Saturday, April 30, 2016

Episode 58: Tom Ford NOIR (or, This was for Men?)

Howdy howdy howdy. I'm back with my first review from the Sephora Favorites Cologne Sampler. This is the scent I chose to redeem my Scent Certificate for, in fact, this scent was the entire reason I purchased the set. Tom Ford Noir is a scent that I was originally introduced to at a Tom Ford counter in Saks Fifth Avenue. The associate had me try Tom Ford Noir pour Femme, and while I liked it, I wasn't thrilled about how many different notes were vying for my attention. She then offered to show me the Tom For Noir - she did not mention it was marked for men. I fell in love, thinking it was a woman's scent! It smelled musky and woody while staying just slightly fresh - just the way I love my scents. I put it right on my "to buy" list. So when I saw it in the sampler set, I was both surprised (that it was considered a men's scent) and excited (Sephora Samplers are a wonderful way to get a bargain on some pricey perfumes). So without further ado, here it is.

Tom Ford Noir eau de Parfum

The scent was launched in 2012 as an answer to some of his more popular mass market women's scents. It was designed to capture the essence of the Tom Ford man, the "refined, urbane sophisticate who the world gets to see, and the intriguingly sensuous, private man they don’t." (Sephora.com) It comes in a sleek black flacon, in consistency with Tom Ford's elegant, minimalist design aesthetic.

The top notes of Noir are Italian bergamot, verbena, caraway, baie rose (pink pepper), violet flower. The mid notes are black pepper, nutmeg, Tuscan Iris resin, Egyptian Geranium, Bulgarian Rose, Clary Sage, and the base notes are opoponax, amber, Indonesian patchouli, vetiver, civet, vanilla. If you are curious about opoponax, I talk about it some here. There are a lot of notes that jump out as being quite in keeping with my fragrance style - bergamot, pink pepper, amber, vanilla. There are also some notes that would make one concerned about the strength and sillage of this fragrance. Black pepper, patchouli and civet can be tricky to wear. 

Image via Sephora.com
On my skin, the first few minutes of Tom Ford Noir are probably the most difficult to get through, and that is saying something, considering how much I liked it on first sniff! Violet is incredibly tricky with my chemistry, and in Noir it has a slightly musty scent that actually ends up working well with the rich, tangy verbena. As the mid notes come out, they play for a good time - much longer than mids usually last on my skin, a virtue I attribute to the spicy black pepper and the Iris resin, which supports the other florals in a rich, warm lustre. As it dries down, usually around the 45 minute mark, the opoponax, amber and vanilla are strongest on my skin, becoming a sweet, lovely musk just the way I like. Very rare for male colognes, Noir comes in eau de Parfum (a separate eau de Toilette was made available, but I cannot say if this is still on the market) and as a mass market scent, it's price point is very much on point for a scent of this calibre.

Rating: ♦♦♦♦ - Noir is not a scent that is going to be for ever man, or every woman, but that is the nature of Tom Ford fragrances. a 50mL EDP is $95 USD and a 100mL EDP is $135 USD, making them very competitive in the luxury, mass market fragrance world. Although marketed towards men, the scent is delightfully unisex, one of the few fragrances I have tried that truly does not make me lean one way or another. I highly recommend Tom Ford Noir for a man who prefers a lighter touch - something strong yet understated. I would also say it is just right for a woman who wants something boldly musky but without giving up any softness. Buy it here.

So, as I mentioned in my Sampler post, the Cologne Sampler was only $65 USD - and this would have retailed for $95! An awesome savings of $35 buckeroos. If you buy from Sephora (not sponsored), Beauty Insiders will earn 3x points on any fragrance purchase until May 8th, 2016. That was enough to sell me! Now, go back to that Sampler Post I linked above and vote on what you want me to review next! Otherwise, it will be my choice, and I am leaning towards Prada and Bvlgari. So let your voice be heard, and pleasant journeys~


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