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Generally the vast majority of fragrances that I wear are ones designed for men. The Hermes Voyage D'Hermes Eau De Toilette spray is a unisex fragrance and I bought the 100ml refillable spray for just over £60. You will probably think straight away that the price is far too expensive for your pocket, as there are so many good quality fragrances out there for less than half this price, but the proof of the pudding is in the testing, will it prove to be worth the extra price tag?
Initially I fully expected the Hermes brand to bring the unisex eau de toilette through my rigorous testing, but I know from past experience that this can prove fatal, so I gave it a fair chance with my close scrutiny and wore it as I would most other fragrances at first - on a night out with the lads. My first impressions of the scent were certainly muted, as the words 'energetic' and 'refined' didn't immediately spring to mind. I did feel somewhat flat after my initial testing, but as with most fragrances it is best to just go for it and wear it out and about and take the feedback on the chin from your friends.
I would definitely say there is no real sign of masculinity within the scent, but then this is a unisex fragrance. this is my problem with unisex fragrances, they aren't aimed at either of the sexes, and are generally cast aside by myself after a weak effort to take them to heart. The scent does give me an impression that is is slightly fruity, and with top notes suggested as sandalwood and cedar it should (but doesn't) give me any real confidence to continue wearing it on a night out.
Another real problem with unisex fragrances from my point of view is that they don't mean anything in terms of your personality. A fragrances should tell a lot about a person, and the type of person wearing this fragrance right now would be one of no real purpose or meaning in their life - the kind of person that can't really make a strong decision. That is what unisex fragrances are to me, avoiding the question and not making a choice between a modern scent and a more sophisticated aroma. This is the opinion of a male, but I can't imagine it would appeal any more to women than it does to myself. With such a steep price tag I can't say anything really positive about this product! The bottle design isn't anything really outstanding or eye catching, and if I had another £60+ to spend I would much prefer to buy 2 or 3 better suited fragrances.
Group: Woody Musk
Since the lovely unisex the Un Jardin... perfume series I own and love two of I'm always on a lookout for new Hermès fragrance offerings created by their resident perfumer Jean-Claude Ellena so it was with great joy to be handed a sample of Voyage d'Hermes in a department store on my recent trip to London.
The 'voyage' theme is not new in terms of olfactory expression at the house of Hermès, however, it's the first time the house has released a packaging and size specifically for travel. The clear bottle comes in a metallic cover that slides over like a mobile phone to reveal the spray top and body. It's certainly stylish, high-end and obviously comes with a higher price tag too.
Top notes: citruses
Voyage d'Hermes starts out fresh and zingy and a little bit sharp due to the citrusy mixture that has a green, aromatic touch to it reminiscent of bergamot or Earl Grey tea. In a few minutes a sweeter but deeper, woodsy accord develops that's sort of out of place and doesn't go well with the citrusy greens. The composition doesn't feel natural and there's an unmistakeably synthetic feel about it, that is warm but empty, sparkling but somehow 'off' like when you mix fresh green grass with sugar.
Heart notes: woods
It didn't take long to realise that the sweet, warm and woodsy accord was a synthetic aromachemical, Iso E Super that's used in many modern fragrances due to its warm, sweet, and woodsy odour profile. It was quite full-on in about 15 minutes while the citruses kept going but to a lesser extent. The composition was anything but natural though and also developed a soapy facet with a certain bitterness, like shaving cream.
Whilst the smell of shaving cream isn't that bad on a man, given that Voyage d'Hermès is meant to be shared, I started really worrying about its unisex credentials and the fact that I was wearing it on a dinner out with friends to test it! It didn't give off much projection and the shaving cream note was only noticeable up close, the accord was composed of mainly a bittersweet lemony and woodsy accord with a light hint of some squeaky clean, watery musk lurking in the background and that ever present lemony freshness that accompanied the heart for the next 3 - 4 hours or so.
Base notes: musk
With the musk fully developing and still a hint of lemony, aromatic woodiness, I started getting the impression of wearing Un Jardin Sur le Nil or Un Jardin Après la Mousson's drydown but unusually stripped of their their spices and the aromatics, the altogether interesting, elegant, complex and refined structure of these two. The scent was detectable after 6 - 8 hours of wear however; at the end the only note remaining was the clean and light white musk which made the drydown quite linear, empty and boring.
All in all, I'm disappointed. It looks like Mr Ellena didn't create anything original but took the citrus - woods - musk bare bones of Un Jardin... and put in on the market as Voyage d'Hermès. After the great classics, Hermessence and Un Jardin series, I again, expected something unusual, natural and beautiful only to be smacked with a re-used, bland and unsophisticated, synthetic creation in the face.
Whilst this would not smell bad on a guy and I understand it was created to be a refreshing, clean, woodsy, musky cologne to share, the whole recycled idea irritates me and I think Hermès fans and Ellena devotees deserve better than this. I certainly wouldn't recommend this to be worn by ladies as I didn't find it feminine at all and this coming from someone that loves a fragrance that's well-made, original and creative regardless of gender.
I don't want to be too harsh and may be entirely missing the point or notes here I'm supposed to be getting but Voyage d'Hermès actually reminds me of being one brilliant specimen for the recent anti-perfume trend: make a perfume that doesn't smell of perfume or just smells of, well, nothing in particular. Like the emperor's new clothes. Or shaving cream.
PRICE AND AVAILABILITY
Voyage d'Hermès can be bought at Hermès consessions in department stores the mere 35ml Eau de Toilette Natural spray will set you back £53.00. Tthe 100 ml Eau de Toilette costs £76.00.
Thanks for reading.
©powered by lillybee also posted on ciao.co.uk
Hermes Voyage D'Hermes EDT 100ml Gift Set contains: Eau De Toilette 100ml / Perfumed Body Lotion 30ml / All-Over Shower Gel 30ml;