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Fragrances - Estee Lauder - Tom Ford Black Orchid

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rated 3.7(188 reviews)

  • Average Rating: 3.7
  • 59% would buy again
  • Package Quality: 4.1
  • Price: $$$$

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rated 3 of 5 top reviewer on 10/7/2008 12:48:00 PM More reviews by evakser

Age: 36-43 Skin: Combination, Medium, Warm Hair: Brunette, Wavy, Medium Eyes: Brown

I tried this at Nordstrom's today after reading the reviews. It's a love it or hate it fragrance, no sitting on the fence with this one. I sprayed it on and initially, I found it way too sharp - it was almost painful, I smelled my arm and recoiled, thinking I made a mistake trying this scent. I left it alone for a while, sniffed it again later, and found it had lightened a little, but was still too sharp for my taste. After about an hour, I smelled it again and it did mellow into a less pungent smell. It rounded out into a powdery, woodsy, earthy - floral scent. On me, it reminds me of the old perfume, Chantilly, though Black Orchid is stronger and earthier. While this scent is not for me, on someone with the right body chemistry it can be nice. I just smell too much powder for my taste. I will update if the drydown changes my mind about this scent!

3 out of 3 people found this review helpful. Did you? Yes No

rated 5 of 5 on 10/5/2008 4:48:00 PM More reviews by whiterabbit23

Age: 19-24 Skin: Combination, Fair-Medium, Not Sure Hair: Brunette, Other, Other Eyes: Green

My favorite perfume--ever. I don't know what I'd do without it. It lasts all day and, to me, is a very woodsy/mossy magical scent. Not a perfume for everyone, but definitely for me. :)

1 out of 1 people found this review helpful. Did you? Yes No

rated 5 of 5 top reviewer on 10/2/2008 12:47:00 AM More reviews by luckylouie

Age: 44-55 Skin: Combination, Fair-Medium, Not Sure Hair: Brunette, Other, Other Eyes: Brown

Every time I wear this perfume people comment how good it smells on me and ask what I'm wearing. My husband can't keep his hands off me. I agree it's too potent to wear to the office and will be too heavy for many women, but if you can pull off strong fragrances, go for it. On me the floral notes wear off quickly, drying down to a mixture of woods, vanilla and musk. It's incredibly earthy, smelling like the warm fur of a healthy young animal that has been rolling around in the earth and flowers, before rubbing up against the bark of trees. This is a fragrance that is both sophisticated and natural, combining the best of both haute couture perfume and hippie chick essential oils. Incredibly rich smelling without being stuffy or old fashioned. I agree with many other reviewers that it is indeed unique.

9 out of 10 people found this review helpful. Did you? Yes No

rated 5 of 5 on 9/13/2008 10:55:00 PM More reviews by cocopuff72

Age: 30-35 Skin: Combination, Other, Not Sure Hair: Brown, Other, Other Eyes: Green

Black Orchid is a dark, rich delight for the olfactory senses. Every note seperates itself each giving its own magic and bewitchment to finally blend together forming a sultry cloud of enigmatic power to the wearer and those who follow in their path. The very scent of this perfume is pure voodoo weaving its spell leaving you breathless and obsessed with every deep inhale. Black Orchid conjurers up images of select people and places, dark gothic cathedrals on a snowy blanketed street, the smell of deep, earthy incense floating thru the air like wispy, dark shadows. Old, magnificent castles encompassed by thick, foggy mists, dark, corner coffee shops bursting with the scent of earthy chichory and espresso beans on a pitch black rainy night of terrential downpour. I could see strong, mysterious and bold, wildly sexy femme fatales wearing such a fragrance like Bette Davis, Mae West or Sara Bernhardt. Women who already contain a potential magic about them that only a fragrance like Black Orchid could spark a further enhancement of what they already possess. Black Orchid is not for the shy, sweet good girl who does what she's told, its for the wicked and wild, for the woman who doesn't know conformities or rules. This is liquid sex and raw fire in a bottle that will spark magie noire in any woman who dares to spritz even a touch. In a word, charmed, Black Orchid is a very charmed perfume and will go down in history as one of the best of the best.

13 out of 15 people found this review helpful. Did you? Yes No

rated 4 of 5 top reviewer on 9/8/2008 4:31:00 PM More reviews by luloo

Age: Unknown Skin: Combination, Fair, Neutral Hair: Other, Wavy, Medium Eyes: Other

Very unique. I think it goes on a little too strong for my taste, but the dry down is lovely. I don't like the packaging.

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rated 5 of 5 top reviewer on 9/7/2008 6:17:00 AM More reviews by doree_001

Age: 44-55 Skin: Dry, Fair, Not Sure Hair: Blond, Other, Other Eyes: Hazel

Finally a grown-up perfume, strong, complex, opulent, impressive, 'rich'. Yes, it is heavy, sultry, sexual, but not vulgar and there is nothing 'cheap' in it. I was sure that I would not like it: truffle and chocolate, incense? Khmm... I don't like any of these notes in a perfume, so I was very doubting. After initial spray I said to a saleslady: "This is not for me - too heavy"... Anyway, something completely unexpected happened: I was quite impressed with the fragrance. It is wild: it is warm, hot, complicated, with a weird truffle-chocolate-incense notes and at the same time there is something green and natural in it (lotus wood, fruity notes, blackcurrant, orchid?). After half an hour it settled into a very chic, warm, alluring, sexy, sensual, close to the skin scent on my skin (pleasant and chic sandalwood, vetiver, vanilla drydown)...all those 'weird' notes settled down and I found it a rather pleasant (but at the same time exciting) fragrance to wear.

Verdict? Very interesting fragrance. I appreciate it: After years and years of cheap, synthetic, completely mediocre fragrances finally a gem - bravo for Tom Ford!

I will probably buy it for winter. I'm sure it is great for evenings out, even as a signature fragrance if you wear just 1-2 spritzes. A good-quality fragrance, longlasting, seductive and fine sillage.

Ragarding packaging: I usually like simple and modern bottles/packaging but I would probably make a tad more 'complicated', sumptuous bottle for such an opulent, rich scent.

8 out of 8 people found this review helpful. Did you? Yes No

rated 3 of 5 on 8/4/2008 5:13:00 PM More reviews by autumnrythm

Age: 30-35 Skin: Normal, Fair, Not Sure Hair: Red, Other, Other Eyes: Green

This is heavy stuff. I like it, but I am not sure if I would (or coud) wear it.

First the scent is very smokey (incense & patchuli) but I also get slight notes of something green & airy light - like cucumber. It mellows down and becomes a bit softer on some edges but also gains a soapier note -- still it remaining moody and dramatic.

2 out of 2 people found this review helpful. Did you? Yes No

rated 3 of 5 on 8/4/2008 1:05:00 PM More reviews by evavongeigern

Age: 25-29 Skin: Combination, Fair, Not Sure Hair: Brunette, Other, Other Eyes: Green

Sleek, black and stylized bottle with an unusual and moody juice. Tom Ford's Black Orchid is going to smell different every time you wear it! I personally loved it the first time, so when I took my bottle home I was shocked and dismayed to find that it had a mushroomy or rotting smell that made me nauseated. Despite the fact that my body doesn't like it, I have to say I can see the value in this scent, so I recommend anyone interested to try it a couple of times before you buy it. It's fascinating, complex, and intriguing, bold as Linda Fiorentino in The Last Seduction, dark and moody as Helena Bonham-Carter looks. ;)

1 out of 1 people found this review helpful. Did you? Yes No

rated 5 of 5 on 6/8/2008 8:08:00 PM More reviews by carela13

Age: 30-35 Skin: Sensitive, Medium, Not Sure Hair: Brunette, Other, Other Eyes: Black

Ireverent and seductive. It's all I can say about this one. I love it. . .

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rated 5 of 5 on 6/2/2008 11:38:00 AM More reviews by IncaColaCutie

Age: 25-29 Skin: Normal, Olive, Not Sure Hair: Brunette, Other, Other Eyes: Hazel

I normally do not go for department store fragrances. My taste runs toward quirky and I like fragrances that I can call my own. With that said, I am a very big fan of Tom Ford. I loved his fashion designs and was despondent when he left Gucci. I don't really know why, but his stint at YSL didn't seem to produce the same iconic pieces. But enough about fashion and on to the fragrance!

I was very anxious to try this scent because of my admiration for Ford and because it was billed as an "oriental chypre" and that is the way some of my all time favorite fragrances are categorized.

Let me say to all those who turned away from this scent at first blush: GO EASY WITH THE STUFF. If you splash this all over yourself, I suspect you will choke. It opens with a bang. Used judiciously, it is complex, unique, and just incredibly sexy.

It reminds me of my other favorite non floral floral: Viktor & Rolfs Flowerbomb.

The florals are dark and heady and tempered with lots of sugar. I also pick up some citrus notes and a tiny bit of fam. But what makes this very special is a dark, earthy undertone that I really can't identify. It stops the scent from being sweet and knocks it vaguely off-kilter, but in a good way.
After a time, a smooth, creamy vanilla that I didn't detect at first begins to emerge. But, the fragrance never gets "foody" (for me, a good thing). It goes thru a couple of other incarnations during the course of the day. Unlike some fragrances, it lasts and lasts, is always interesting, and, if I can make it wearable during the summer as well, this may very well be one of my new signature scents. Kudos to Mr. Ford!

3 out of 5 people found this review helpful. Did you? Yes No