man.aubusson Intense (Aubusson)

Not a man.

I first heard about this scent while reading the now defunct Pour Monsieur blog, which has an interesting review of it. His opinion is similar to my own, in that we both experienced intense disappointment upon blind sampling man.aubusson Intense. Where we diverge is in the long view - he grew to like it, while I still hate it. To me, this scent is the epitome of crap. It is intensely derivative, intensely boring, intensely synthetic, intensely sweet, and all around intense in the most negative sense of the word. I'll save you the trouble of going through what I did here and just say that you ought to avoid wasting six dollars on a large bottle of this stuff. It ain't worth it.

How does it smell, exactly? Very similar to two Joop! fragrances I already own, namely Joop! Jump (at the start) and Joop! Homme Wild (at the finish), with an oddly screechy and nauseatingly sweet apple note hinging them together. It smells more like the latter scent than the former, but there's definitely a sweetened Cool Water thing going on in the first ten minutes, very much like Jump. I can almost abide the fragrance for those first few minutes, but Jump is just a better scent, and hell, Cool Water is better than both of them. Besides, when something is this blatantly derivative, it's tempting to revisit its predecessors, where all the real love is.

And I'll be honest, since purchasing it a year ago, I haven't worn Wild. I really enjoy it when I spritz it on my wrist, but have yet to find a day where I'm inclined to actually give it a full wearing. It's too sweet and boisterous for work, and I can't help but feel a bit too old for it, despite not believing in age limits for fragrance. But at least Wild smells competently made - man Intense smells shoddy, like a chemist mixed a few sweet and vaguely fruity materials in a vial and called it a perfume. No thanks. I'll stick with the beautiful original Aubusson for Men.

If Justin Bieber fits your idea of manliness, this one's for you.


  1. A very thought provoking post, as ever. I do detect some of that vintage exclusivity and snobbery in the blog world, and we will never know how half of this rare old gear really smells. I hadn't thought of the difference between connoisseur and enthusiast, but I do agree with the connotations you mention, also the point about a person being able to be a connoisseur of a single bottle. I think some vintage perfumes seem to be in reasonable nick, but I wouldn't kid myself they are 'the same' as 40 years ago when they were truly boxfresh.

    1. Hi Vanessa, for some reason this comment appeared under this post instead of my "vintage mentality" post. You bring up a good point, which is that it's near impossible to measure how much a vintage has changed from its original state if you've never smelled the template fresh. I for one will not hazard any serious guesses on this blog!


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