Category Archives: The Different Company

The Different Company – Un Parfum Des Sens & Bois, Un Parfum De Charmes & Feuilles, De Bachmakov

More generously gifted fragrances from The Different Company here. Hopefully bringing some success after the disappointment of the last reviewed samples :)

Sens & Bois opens with a sprinkling of pepper, a delicate, watery shard of ginger, and a faint whisp of incense. This is mainly an incense fragrance, the pepper and ginger providing a very slight spice, with an almost aquatic like accord smoothing out the edges, like, a huge dose of Iso E Super or something.

There’s a nondescript “floral” aspect to it, that makes the combination a little more delicate (if it needed to be!), and from the very start, Sens & Bois remains close to the skin.

After a short while, the cedar comes forward which is nice enough – dry, slightly sharp, but not let loose to full power because of this smooth aquatic emptiness that rounds out the entire composition.
From here on it remains relatively linear, quiet, almost nondescript. 

Not quite dry, not quite floral, not quite spicy, not quite… well, not very interesting :)

Charms & Feuilles is an ever so slightly more interesting combination of notes. It opens with some muted cooking spices (the green herbaceous kind rather than the spicy kind), of listed marjoram and sage. A cool peppermint freshens it up more so, and underneath, a nice accord of “wet leaves” without any of the interesting soil solidifies it.

A zesty fruit accord is just about detectable, along with the palest of florals yet again. As with Sens & Bois, the fragrance seems rounded out with a big watery, smoothing chemical, to blend the nondescript notes together.

A bitter-ish tea leaf note comes in created a kind of Earl Grey tea accord with a little less bergamot. This may simply come from some lifeless patchouli, which does grow in strength over time.

The fragrance then drags on in a muted, slightly herbaceous style. Cool peppermint still suprisingly shows its face, an un-pleasant jasmine-tea grows a little stronger and plays in the foreground, and the patchouli just about gives Charms & Feuilles some substance.

I actually wasn’t gifted this one, and it was part of the sample pack I ordered of The Different Company scents I WANTED to like.
I thought I’d cram this on the end of this review simply because it’s clogging up my sample set and I may as well write about it.

De Bachmakov is thankfully, one of the most interesting in the otherwise dire lineup of The Different Company. It’s opens with an almost doughy-bready accord, similar to L’Artisan Parfumeur’s beautiful Bois Farine, only this has a slight citric twang to it of bergamot, making it less edible, and a very green accord underneath.

The fragrance is often said to feel “cold” and I can agree with that. It has a very cool feel to it, and I think that’s due to the shisho leaves which I believe has a mint like scent? There’s some other green leaves in here and a dose of cedar wood giving the base some security, much more so than that of the previous two fragrances just reviewed.

Also there is no aquatic style here, it is much more solid. But it still has that translucency. The bergamot actually feels a little too pungent for the other subdued notes and it comes across as a little obtrusive.
A watery jasmine makes it’s appearance again – and I’ve mentioned before how I prefer my jasmine’s richer and more indolic, rather than this pale, un-appetizing jasmine. It instead seems to create a fragrant floral haze over the fragrance, and I don’t really see the point of jasmine used like this.

Anyway – the bready notes stay persistent which I would only have thought would be iris, but listed is a “chalk accord” so I’m guessing this is it, it does feel chalky, but also pale and doughy, and pretty much the only note bulking up the otherwise airy herbaceous greenery.

All in all, this is without a doubt the best of the bunch, but still, looking at the price – it’s just horrendous for what you are getting. Fair enough if you fall in love with this, but nothing about these compositions to me are exciting or even wearable. I wouldn’t give these a second thought if I sprayed them out of a designer bottle in a drug store.
I’m sure I sound like I have it in for The Different Company – I don’t at all. I really wanted to like their fragrances, and I was impressed with their polite customer service. Unfortunately however, I’m not going to lie on this blog.

To me, this is without a doubt my least favourite fragrance house, the scents just do not work for me and I’m completely underwhelmed by them. I have however gave them fair reviews and I hope no one takes anything I’ve said to heart if I’ve slated one of your beloved TDC fragrances – enjoy it! I’m envious that you can appreciate this style of perfumery better than myself :)

The Different Company -
De Bachmakov 90ml $230
Sens & Bois 90ml $215
Charmes & Feuilles 90ml $215

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The Different Company – Osmanthus, Bergamote

I haven’t had that much luck with The Different Company so far. Well, to be honest I’m slightly over-exaggerating. As far as you guys know from my reviews, I have only sampled Sel De Vetiver, which was ok, but nothing that amazed me as it does others. Despite this I ordered some more of their samples in a recent Luckyscent order, these which I have tried, but haven’t yet reviewed.

Anyway, I’m convinced I want to find something from this brand I enjoy. But it’s going to take a learning curve for me to get there. I’ve gathered the “feel” from this brand is “slightly minimalistic, ethereal and transparent”, not the themes I am usually fond of… at all. This seems to be down to the perfumers: Jean-Claude Ellena and his daughter Celine Ellena, who are renowned for having their own distinctive style of modern, translucent perfumery. I’m sure this sounds amateurish and maybe even slightly unfair, I’m following along with what others say, as I haven’t experienced THAT many Ellena fragrances. From what I’ve sniffed personally and understood from others, this is what the fragrances aim for, and flourish at that.

So, as mentioned, I’m not the biggest fan of this style of perfumery but I hope to discover and understand it more so, and the very kind people of The Different Company have helped me do that by sending a batch of fragrance samples for me to try. So, I’m starting with these two soliflores in hope they may be an easy place for me to start…

I haven’t smelt osmanthus in a fragrance before, not centre stage at least, but if this is an accurate representation, it is nice.
Osmanthus opens with a very clean, soapy white floral note, with a sprinkling of pollen.

There’s a bright citrus bergamot/orange up top, and I get a boat load of Geraniol. Now, I feel like I’m trying to be a right show-off by naming aroma-chemicals – but after attending the perfumery course in April, I studied a whole load of aroma-chemicals as homework prior to the course. Osmanthus instantly reminded me of one of these chemicals – Geraniol.

I described Geraniol as – “…subtle sushi like smell initially. Green, leafy, increases in strength as time goes on. A green rose blossoms out and is almost salty/ozonic – an aquatic rose”. I smell this in Osmanthus, and the fragrance to me is more about rose than osmanthus (I think. Maybe if I had sniffed pure osmanthus I’d have a greater understanding of it).

A clean white musk sits underneath this, along with a grassy note reminiscent more of dried/meadow grass than fresh-cut. It’s fresh, clean, denser then I thought it would be but definitely light. Osmanthus is pleasant and safe – a combination of green rose, white flowering osmanthus, grass and musk…

Bergamote starts with a fresh scratching of orange peel, like the smell on your fingers once you peel one. It’s not actually as juicy and edible as it sounds, due to a floral note which comes in really quickly – a white orange blossom.

A very fine grate of ginger spices up the orange, and the combination smells a little bit like a delicately flavoured cough drop. Oranges, lemons, ginger and the fragrant floral of orange blossom, and this is how it remains throughout the drydown.

At the base, an almost non-descript green woodiness supports the citrus (which lasts for a good while for such a cologne-type fragrance), and that’s all. If you like this sort of thing, then yes, it’s a nice quality straightforward citrus. But for me, I’d much rather pay less and get some Tauer Orange Star – the juiciest most delicious orange opening and complicated drydown.

Bergamote is a straightforward citrus fragrance of nice quality.

Honestly, I’m not impressed at all :(
I was expecting something different from a house named The Different Company, but these are about as safe and plain as they get. Light, simple, and un-inspiring, which is a real shame! I hope I have more success with the rest of the line, I’d like to thoroughly understand the point of fragrances like this, but I’ve tried to give them a fair review – these would normally be a sniff and dismiss.

Osmanthus 90ml EDT The Different Company – $210 thedifferentcompany.com
Bergamote 90ml EDT The Different Company – $215 the different company.com

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Sel De Vetiver – The Different Company & Sombre Negra – YOSH

Vetiver! Wow, a few months ago I’d have never thought I’d be ordering vetiver samples…

To be honest, so far (having briefly tried the vetiver samples in one go) I realise I should have stuck to my guns… vetiver is not for me. But, I will keep trying! I must be missing something.

I will start with The Different Company’s Sel De Vetiver which came highly recommended to me from a nose I respect on the Basenotes forum. This isn’t my favourite vetiver – I’ll call it a vetiver solifore – solifore  that I’ve sampled, but it’s not boring either. It is also the first time I’ve tried a fragrance from The Different Company.

Sel De Vetiver opens fresh, cool and green. There is a fennel/green anise type of note that I can’t quite put my finger on. That seems to be the dominant scent at first. I guess the rest of unidentifiable smell must be the vetiver…

If you’ve read many of my previous posts, you’ll know that I don’t know much about green notes and vetiver as a dominant note, with these recent vetiver explorations I’m trying to actually discover what this stuff smells like!

So this fragrance… from first spray it remains very linear, a green, fennel like accord with some green vetiver underneath. It’s slightly salty and very fresh. It reminds me slightly of Skarb by Humiecki and Graef which I have previously reviewed, although Skarb is more melon and water, I guess I mean it has a similar feel, and a similar aquatic accord. A slightly herbal note creeps in also, similar to that I pick up in Comme Des Garcons’ Skai.

Although I find the fennel note interesting, it’s nothing I would want to wear, and I also don’t enjoy the vetiver in this. I guess if you don’t enjoy the vetiver in a vetiver soliflore, there’s not much point carrying on…

I’m very confused by this. Sombre Negra came highly recommended to me by a few forum members after I asked about fragrances with dominant “mushroom” accords.
A list of notes claimed “patchouli, davana, teak, tobacco, mushroom…” amongst other things, sounded fantastic so I ordered a sample from LuckyScent.

After first sniff, none of this came out! Then I saw the list of notes given on LuckyScent: “vetiver, black pepper, clove, cumin, nutmeg…” amongst others. Well, apart from cumin I like none of them notes… DAMN! Should have looked first.

I’m not too sure what the story behind this is. It’s in a different bottle now? With a whole new list of notes? What a bummer! So it says on LuckyScent that the guy who made this decided to reinvent it as the first was dark and edgy (why that’s a bad thing I don’t know) and make it brighter etc.
I didn’t read this before I ordered my sample, and I know the people who recommended this to me didn’t mean this version.

So this review is on the current “M:001 Sombre Negra”:

Sombre Negra – smoke, cloves and vetiver. Crap!

The Different Company Sel de Vetiver 50ml EDT – $135 Luckyscent
YOSH Sombre Negra 50ml – $130 Luckyscent

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