It feels unfair to rate a fragrance badly, because scent perception and interpretation is so subjective...but to me, it was disappointing enough to feel many others too would expect something else entirely from Chanel, and from the various descriptions and ratings of allure.
Mine was a gift...that I gave away after giving it a fair trial.
The cirtus in this bothered me the most, as it is dominant (to me), I don't like citrus to being with, and allure has a "strange" take on it as well. Like someone who previously reviewed it, I also felt it was strongly reminiscent of insecticide- Biokill, Autan, Off, I felt it shared a note with them all. True, it was mostly the opening and middle notes where this was perceptible, so I sprayed it on a clean shirt and hung it outside on a windy night (the bothersome note refused to go away otherwise), curious what it would smell like in the morning. I didn't get the base notes, in the morning it was just a sour lemon scent.
Strangely, when I tried spraying it on paper, it wasn't bad, there was a sweetness and warmth to it, surrounding a floral heart, I would've liked it if it smelled like that on my skin or clothes. But it didn't. I don't know if that's just me, or a "thing" with Allure, but to be on the safe side, I would advise those who are buying at the counter to not rely on a tester strip alone.
The mentions by some reviewers of warmth, vanilla, elegance don't surprise me, due to how mine smelled on paper, but i'm a little irritated that it performed so differently on everything else.
It does have a peculiar synthetic vibe also. I dislike using that description because " that annoying synthetic vibe" is so different in all of the fragrances that sport it, so I know it doesn't tell you much. But I know I recognize it from the nineties, probably smelled it on allure wearers. I am not sure, but I think it is a non stellar result of poorly done rose+sandalwood. "Poorly" done in my own opinion because it takes me intense olfactory gymnastics to recognize it as rose and sandalwood, it's not how they're done in any other perfume I know- but that might be what makes it likeable to those who dislike the usual effect of these notes.
I do not recognize a Chanel "signature" in this, but then, my chanel experience is limited. I think it might make it likeable to those who haven't had luck with other chanels, but I personally can't get over the bugspray, synthetic, sour lemon on rose and sandalwood compost. Consider yourself lucky if it resembles the paper strip smell on you, it's much nicer!
Definitely try before buying. I don't think it's a very safe gift (unless the recipient has specified they like it), it seems to be experienced very differently by different people.