360° For Men (Perry Ellis)

Here's another oldie that still manages to hold its own in the pantheon of almost-forgotten nineties masculines, a spicy chypre in the hybridized fashion of Cool Water, Kenzo, and Eternity for Men, the original 360° by Perry Ellis. I personally dislike this fragrance because it smells like Windex to me, but I can understand why others enjoy it. There's something very fizzy and pleasant about how its herbal elements play off each other. Many guys feel there's an evolution in how it dries down, although I don't get much of that - it smells rather false and flat to me. It simply smells of alcohol and something spicy-sweet: the synthetic equivalent of raw maple sap, overlaid with a heinously under-wrought accord of juniper and lavender. What annoys me the most about 360° is the knowledge that if it were balanced, fine-tuned, and composed with top-notch materials, it would smell divine, like a true classic.

There isn't much to state about its progression. It opens smelling like Windex, but in five or ten seconds manages to resemble juniper, lavender, thin citrus (presumably lemon and/or lime), and a duskier cardamom note. The cardamom pulls up as the other notes recede, and is joined by a pissy-smelling sage note, with a sweet white musk upholding everything. There's that vague "fresh-floral" feeling to the drydown that Fragrantica says is freesia, but I'm thinking it is simply geraniol and linalool duking it out in there. Some people would suggest pineapple, but if it's pineapple then it's sucky pineapple, with none of that note's acid twang or buttery (butyric) edge. Nonetheless, the sweetness deepens with time, broadening into a monotonous woody-musky heart with a masculine edging of sage and the memory of juniper, and provides an amenable warmth to a cheap chypre. 360° Blue, and even Aqua Velva, are vastly better than this.

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