WTD, Episode 4.1: Neroli Portofino and Jasmin Rouge by Tom Ford

Lemon treeNeroli Portofino by Tom Ford – created in 2007, one of the original scents of Private Blend collection, it was re-launched in 2011 as a part of the Neroli Portofino bath & body collection. When I tried Neroli Portofino for the first time it developed unpleasantly on my skin. I put it aside and didn’t want to test it again. In my recent tests of a new sample for this episode (the things we do in the name of science!) I’ve never had the same unpleasant results again. I’m curious if Tom Ford has reformulated Neroli Portofino for the 2011 re-release.

In the opening I get an extreme burst of a juicy citrus. I know that it’s coming and still feel surprised every time. I enjoy that opening very much. When Neroli Portofino starts calming down the juiciness goes away. I do not smell any sweetness and I don’t register any floral notes (though I remember reading that other reviewers did). All I’m left with is a dry citrus scent – still strong but less prominent and less interesting.

I wore Neroli Portofino side by side with Neroli by Annick Goutal first and then with Grand Néroli by Atelier Cologne. Neroli Portofino is much dryer than both above mentioned perfumes. Neroli Portofino is more poised and tidy compared to Grand Néroli and feels dirtier than Neroli (I think I recognize this signature Tom Ford’s “dirtiness” in at least several perfumes in this line but I’m not sure I can explain properly now what exactly I smell). Neroli Portofino, though being unisex, in my opinion is the most masculine out of three perfumes I compared and it stays on my skin for 6-8 hours which is much longer than either of the other two scents.

I wouldn’t mind wearing Neroli Portofino in summer from time to time if I had it in my collection but I do not like it enough to justify a full bottle purchase at Private Blend’s price. Or maybe I’m just not the biggest fan of this genre.

For real reviews read EauMG and Bois de Jasmine

JasmineJasmin Rouge by Tom Ford – one of the two latest 2011 new releases in the Private Blend collection. I regret to admit it to myself but I do not like jasmine. It’s great in small doses, as a part of the usual floral bouquet, but as a leading note in a perfume it wears me off the same way tuberose does. I can appreciate its beauty, I just cannot wear it. Ironically, I like both the smell and the taste of jasmine tea but I cannot drink it.

In older days I used to just dismiss perfumes I didn’t like on the first sniff. Now I spend some time even with those perfumes I do not think will work out for me. And with both tuberose- and jasmine-heavy perfumes (good ones) it’s always the same story: I apply it, I sniff it, I think: “Not bad, it’s a very nice scent;” I keep smelling it and confirming my initial thoughts and then I would ask myself if I want to own it and wear, beyond just testing. And the answer is always a determined NO.

Jasmin Rouge played out exactly by that scenario: I got tired of it before it subsided into the less intense floral mix. It won’t be joining my collection even if a bottle falls from the sky.

For real reviews for Jasmin Rouge read Olfactoria’s Travel and Bois de Jasmine

As always, feel free to give a link to your blog’s post(s) related to the topic.

Images: my own

See all episodes:
Weeklong Test Drives, Season 4: Tom Ford
WTD, Episode 4.2: In the Search for the Perfect Violet
WTD, Episode 4.3: Noir de Noir, Oud Wood and Arabian Wood by Tom Ford

WTD, Episode 1.5: Neroli by Annick Goutal


Orrange blossom
Photo: Ellen Levy Finch

Neroli – created in 2003, notes include Orange blossom absolute, neroli essence, petitgrain Paraguay essence, cypress essence, cedar essence. I think it’s a nice, non-offensive perfume that plays very safely on all the notes it’s made of. I cannot find a reason not to like it. But by the same token I cannot find a reason to love it. I wouldn’t mind wearing it in summer if I just happen to get a bottle but I do not plan on actively seeking it.

Sillage: light (3 out of 5); tenacity: fair (3 hours).

See all episodes:

Weeklong Test Drives, Season 1: Annick Goutal
WTD, Episode 1.1: Eau d’Hadrien by Annick Goutal
WTD, Episode 1.2: Grand Amor by Annick Goutal
WTD, Episode 1.3: Le Mimosa by Annick Goutal
WTD, Episode 1.4: Heure Exquise by Annick Goutal
WTD, Episode 1.6: Petite Cherie by Annick Goutal
WTD, Episode 1.7: Songes by Annick Goutal