As mentioned earlier, I’ll be reviewing fragrances for the Fandomentals, with a new fragrance every week. Some weeks will feature niche fragrances, some designer fragrances, and I’ll provide my raw and unfiltered opinion. While I will be discussing notes to an extent, I’m not going to over-focus on them and throw up videos that are 15 minutes long of me snorting my wrists and pretending I’m picking up every single note. I want this series to be accessible to anyone reading it, no matter what your knowledge/experience is with fragrances.
I also want to preface that I am in no means implying with any of my reviews that niche fragrances are just so much better than designer fragrances, or that any fragrance is too “mainstream”. Let’s be real folks, the likelihood of the average person walking around and smelling a fragrance and then recognizing it from a random passerby is very slim. There’s no such thing as too mainstream unless you want to count the “sprayed on too much Axe deodorant” folks.
To kick things off, I’m starting out with a fragrance that wound up changing my mind on “florals”. For the longest time, I’d associated florals with the cheaply made incense sticks hanging out in the pseudo new age stores that invariably pop up at malls before just as quickly going out of business, or by the eye-watering scents that some women choose to bathe in instead of applying lightly before going out.
But I liked some of the other notes listed and figured I’d give it a try, and here we are.
Juliette Has a Gun was founded in 2006 by Romano Ricci, and caters to feminine fragrances. He describes Gentlewoman as a “men’s cologne dedicated to women”. Gentlewoman was launched in 2015, with a more androgynous style in mind and let me tell you, especially wlw. That idea you have in your head of that queer, boss bitch power femme in the perfectly tailored suit, impeccably styled, has her life together and can command the attention of the room? That woman smells like this.
People who hate florals, meet your new friend neroli, an essential oil produced from bitter orange tree blossom. It’s luscious.
The notes listed for Gentlewoman are as follows:
Top: Neroli, bergamot
Heart: Coumarin, almond, orange blossom
Base: Ambroxan, musks
Neroli is absolutely the star of the show here, no question. It’s gonna stick with you for most of the wear time. Yes, the ambroxan adds some brightness, and the almond smooths everything out to a nice blend, but seriously, this the neroli feature. That said, this comes out pretty strong so you don’t want to go overboard with this. It’s an Eau de Cologne, but it performs like an Eau de Parfum. A spritz on the wrists, over the hair, across your torso, that’s ALL you need. Projection is pretty steady and the sillage lingers just long enough as you walk away. The longevity for this, I’ve found is around 5-6 hours, providing you aren’t preparing to go hard in the gym or roll in the poop covered glass beads, otherwise known as sand, on the beach.
You can find Gentlewoman on Sephora, but it’s at least $20 cheaper on Amazon, which you can find here.
Overall verdict? If you’re anywhere on the wlw spectrum I highly, highly suggest y’all nab yourselves at least a sample of this and get to sniffing.