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          Black Orchid Tom Ford for women

          Black Orchid Tom Ford for women

          main accords

          warm spicy
          earthy
          woody
          sweet
          amber
          patchouli
          chocolate
          floral
          fruity
          balsamic
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          main accords

          warm spicy
          earthy
          woody
          sweet
          amber
          patchouli
          chocolate
          floral
          fruity
          balsamic

          Perfume rating 3.98 out of 5 with 15,576 votes

          Black Orchid by Tom Ford is a Oriental Floral fragrance for women. Black Orchid was launched in 2006. The nose behind this fragrance is Givaudan. Top notes are Truffle, Gardenia, Black Currant, Ylang-Ylang, Jasmine, Bergamot, Mandarin Orange and Amalfi Lemon; middle notes are Orchid, Spices, Gardenia, Fruity Notes, Ylang-Ylang, Jasmine and Lotus; base notes are Mexican chocolate, Patchouli, Vanille, Incense, Amber, Sandalwood, Vetiver and White Musk.

          Black Orchid was created by perfumers?of the fragrance company Givaudan in 2006. It was announced as an oriental chypre. The top notes are French jasmine, black truffle, ylang-ylang, black currant, and effervescent citrus. In the floral-spicy heart, dwells Tom Ford's black orchid, more imaginary?than real, and the base combines woodsy notes (patchouli and sandalwood), dark chocolate, incense, amber, vetiver, vanilla, and balsam.

          Black Orchid is opulent and?classically dark; its fragrance is in line with the best creations of the best perfume houses. A luxurious and sensual fragrance with a rich, dark trace of black orchid and spices, it is modern and timeless. It remains to be said that Black Orchid is long lasting and with a widespread aura.

          "This is not about an ordinary orchid, it's about something a little more strange and rare. I wanted the blackest orchid, and those aren't easy to find." The perfume is luxurious and the product range includes Eau de Parfum in 50 ml (at US$90) and 100 ml (at US$135) bottles, and a limited edition of 5,000 15 ml bottles of Parfum at US$600. The distribution is limited.

          Read about this perfume in other languages: Deutsch, Espa?ol, Fran?ais, Italiano, Русский, Polski, Português, Ελληνικ?, 漢語, Nederlands, Srpski, Roman?, ???????, Укра?нська, Монгол, ?????.

          Perfumer

          Perfume Pyramid

          Top Notes

          Truffle
          Gardenia
          Black Currant
          Ylang-Ylang
          Jasmine
          Bergamot
          Mandarin Orange
          Amalfi Lemon

          Middle Notes

          Orchid
          Spices
          Gardenia
          Fruity Notes
          Ylang-Ylang
          Jasmine
          Lotus

          Base Notes

          Mexican chocolate
          Patchouli
          Vanille
          Incense
          Amber
          Sandalwood
          Vetiver
          White Musk
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          Most Popular Positive Reviews

          MadScentist

          Can you guys -male reviewers -quit saying that "this doesn't belong on a woman" and such things...


          It CLEARLY belongs on a person with strong sense of self and on someone who is confident in her (or his) sexuality. I personally think it's very sensual and would never try to discourage anyone who wants to wear it, male or female.

          My man LOVES this scent on me because it's a good fit for my personality.

          End of rant.

          nopasho

          For the ladies: I'm not a big fan of Tom Ford. I was, when he was still art dirctor at YSL where he launched the amazing M7 frag for men and created the beautiful bottle. In 2005 he left and created his own brand (what else of a self proclaimed egomaniac) called: 'Tom Ford'. Cashing in on his supposed 'sex symbol' status for the ladies, he posed sedutively on a cover of Vanity Fair, where he sat clothed between an totally naked Scarlett Johansen and Keira Knightly. Although he is 100% and now openly gay. Sorry ladies.
          That misleading of people, I don't like with TF. I also don't like the excruciatingly overrated and overpriced 'Private Blends' by the man and his bigger than big ego. Those private blends are medicore frags dressed up in ridiculous expensive prices, so that when you bought one, you have to find it great or you would die of embarassement that you let yourself be fooled byt the TF marketing bulldozer. But I must confess, I find some of the first frags of his own house like 'Black Orchid' (2006) an unabasehdly and shmeless masterpiece on the same level as 'Opium', 'Chanel Coco' the first 'Lolita Lempicka'... I think he is a blown up poser who is capable of making the occasional great frag. 'Genius' I guess. And 'Black Orchid' is fabulous and gorgeous, make no mistake. As is the bottle. Praise where rightfully praise is due.
          How does 'Black Orhcid' tick and smell? It is a complex frag in the 'old school' style of the 'classics' mentioned here. Not 'Less is more', like the minimalist Bernard Ellena's for Hermès like 'Jardin après le Mousson', 'Toit', 'Nil'... but 'More is more'! Black Orchid is also like the Guerlains, the Diors... an intricate work with a symphony of notes. Top: jasmine, gardenia, ylang-ylang, bergamot, lemon, mandarin, blackcurrant, tuber; Middle: Spices, fruity notes, lotus, orchid; a very powerful base: vetiver, sandalwood, patchouli, incense, vanilla, dark chocolate, amber. With that much notes it can go two ways: a cacaphonous mess where all these strong notes fight each other to death or a soul caressing harmony, outerworld beauty and olfactory bliss where all those notes pull together to play a team match and score. To make the symphony sound better and more than all seperate notes together. The sign of a True Great. Black Orchid scores big time.
          You can maybe in the long and lively development sometimes detect some separate notes for a short time like the dark chocolate, the incense, the orchid, the vanilla, the amber... But you are literarlly blown away by this concentrated mass attact of awesome perfume power. Smell and awe. Incense, dark chocolate, orchid, vanilla, amber and gardenia are the most pronounced notes for me.
          This is an gorgeous tsunami of fragrance brilliancy. This fragrances rocks, like 'Chanel 5' rocks and 'Jicky' rocks and 'Joy' rocks. And will always be rocking. This is Timeless Quality. Here not the top notes lead the dance but the formidable base. They let the middle and top exist, but as a compliment to the power of that exceptional strong base. The middle of orchid, spices, and fruity notes, plus the top of flowers enforce and interact with each other and with the base. They deepen the scent and make it more intricate. The result is one of the most intoxicating frags I know. 'Le Baiser du Dragon' by Cartier is the one that really resemble it the most IMHO. If you think 'Hypnotic Poison' makes you dizzy and giddy with pure delirious pleasure, try this magic potion. It is that magic of your first full blown good wet kiss. It is deep, dark, mysterious, earthy, sex in a bottle, unashamedly powerful strong and sensual. I'm a man, but I can imagine this being a 'man magnet'. It is without a doubt a masterpiece. The only masterpiece perfume of his own house to date sadly, apart perhaps from 'Tobacco Vanilla'. When you put this on you feel like Christine Lagarde of the IMF, Scarlett Johanssen, Angelina Jolie, Brad Pitt, Jake and Mary Gyllenhall, Uma Thurman, Penelope Cruz all rolled into one. Glamourous, ageless, unisex, beautiful, eternal beauty. A fragrance for strong personalities, but also a fragrance that in applying makes you feel stronger. And let there be not doubt: totally unisex!
          After a period I didn't use that bottle, I spritzed again a few weeks ago and now I am lost and addicted, hopelessly in love like an alcoholic who starts to drink after a 10 year dry spell. The power of 'Black Orchid' is that awesome. I quiver, I shiver, I sigh, I sniff myself like crazy. Put me for 24 hours in an isolation cell without food and drink, but give me a bottle of 'Black Orchid', I won't hesitate.
          Black Orchid is a masterpiece. Despite the ballooned ego of TF anno 2011.
          So if you like the clasics 'Opium', 'Coco', 'Arpège'... but you also like more modern 'big personality' frags like Narciso, Addict, Midnight and Hypnotic Poison, YSL Cinema, Gaultiers Classique, you'll love 'Black Orchid'. Don't let yourself be persuaded by reviews like mine and other less favorable. Try it and you'll surrender to the magic of Black Orchid. It is a one of a kind tour de force. I don't like Tom Ford since his 'Private Blends', but I love Black Orchid.' To death.

          BlackAmberMoon

          Imagine a dark forest at night, thick with mist, the moon full and bright. A dark haired beauty wearing a deep red velvet dress awaits her lover in a gossamer tent under the trees. Inside the tent, incense burns while the woman enjoys dark chocolate, slowly allowing the bitter sweetness to melt on her tongue. Her lover finally arrives and they make passionate love, their bodies glistening with sweat as they utter eternal love. This is Black Orchid! It's the perfume I've been waiting for all my life...

          aaronstarks73

          An absolute MASTERPIECE! Dark, mysterious, smooth, alluring. When I wear this, I don't walk into a room, I float in supernaturally like Dracula. That's it! This is a scent a vampire would wear when he's out hunting beautiful women. Strong chocolaty scent with florals beneath it (violets?). To put in colors, this scent smells black & purple to me. It's heavy but smooth, never harsh.

          For women, any age can wear this. For men, this is an ADULT fragrance. A confident, secure MAN that knows how to approach and talk to women without coming off as a creep or a dudebro can wear this. This smells like seduction (not sex, learn the difference).

          I feel confident when I wear this because I know this scent will create an awesome scent memory with whoever encounters me. And as a man of color, this fragrances smells like it was made for me.

          Yes, it's "supposed to be" a colder weather fragrance, but I wear this year around...and only at night. It lasts 8+ hours on my skin and it project extremely well. I go 4 sprays at night, 5 sprays if it's a big space or outdoors. Women LOVE it.

          So if you're out to transfix and seduce the opposite sex, Black Orchid needs to be in your collection.

          10/10 Easily Backup Bottle Worthy!

          corvin

          Oh, my. This is really dark, mysterious and abstract. Reminds me of things that are only in fantasy novels. This is a pure representation of dark magic, voodoo, and witchery. Perfectly unisex. To get most of this fragrance, you should wear dark and formal clothes with a little bit of extravagance.

          Attractive women in a dark dress wearing BO would disarm me in a second.

          Scent: 10/10
          Performance: 9/10
          Versatility: 5/10

          Signature of vampires, witches, and warlocks.
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          Most Popular Negative Reviews

          Raina

          This is so beautiful and hateful, I don't know where to start. I both love it and resent it.

          This is, in essence, a perfume for perfume lovers only.

          At first spray its very much a unisex kind of scent, very herbal and masculine. You can tell that the prominent chocolate note here is not of the sweet variety, more of the earthy richness of a deep dark chocolate. Then as it settles down something lovely happens. A softness is introduced, gardenia and orchid florals that lend the scent a similar feel to the freshness found in floral aquatics. It gives this a new dimension in what could have been a rather masculine scent (though it would not take much to tip it that way for the men who like to wear this.) Of course this is tempered with an earthy background so as to avoid becoming too fresh or floral.

          The smokey notes in the base notes really come out in the dry down, giving it that sensual close to the skin type of smell, and because of that distinct scent I can understand why some say its sex in a bottle; it just is.

          If it were a woman, I would picture her as a dark haired beauty with a sultry laugh and bewitching eyes. She would wear gowns without the jewels (and not much else) and get away with pretty much anything. She would stroll through lush gardens at night, her laughter trailing in her wake and leaving her lover bewitched and picturing their bodies entwined as he trails after her.

          There is something utterly captivating about this perfume. That being said I really just don't like it. It is very masculine (something I'm beginning to associate with this house) and just not something I can see people smelling on me and complimenting. On the contrary I'm sure the stench would scare them all away. There are just some perfumes that really take a person who can appreciate the nuances of perfumes to enjoy, and this is one of them.

          It could be beautiful, should be beautiful, but I just would never ever wear it. So, sadly, not for me.

          I am rather enchanted by the utter sensuality of this perfume. It is rather strong and so it would take an equally strong woman to wear this.

          feely

          Looks like I am very much in the minority here with this one. Wearing this made me feel so depressed. I was constantly reminded of a wet, rainy cemetary. I did not get any sweetness at all. I usually go for "darker" frags in the colder months, but this one is a no-no for me.
          In fact, I don't think I've ever had such a viceral reaction to a scent before. It was overwhelmingly sad.
          I couldn't get it off fast enough - it lingered forever.
          This isn't dark - it's pitch freaking BLACK.

          Sam_1998

          The defenition of love or hate, Polarizing fragrance.

          The fragrance I hate so much most of the times, I think it's obnoxious, loud, in your face, but sometimes when I smell it on others It mesmerizes me, it's weird
          Black orchid is dirty, gothic, a crazy mix of everything, but it's addictive to smell, definitely for grown men or women with different style.
          I will never wear black orchid nor I want my significant other wear this, But can't deny that it's a unique masterpiece.

          Planet_X

          Hehe. Will use the opportunity to write a negative review, coz on weekend everyone is drunk and can't be bothered!
          So!

          I came to conclusion that Tom Ford is engaged in unclean business with Elizabeth Bathory. For those who unfamiliar with ancient Hungarian history – she killed lots of young girls and bathed in their blood. But I suppose since vampires are immortal and having nothing interesting to do, she decided to step in and created a SCENT, that captured her deeds and actions in one bottle. Here you go, my darling, come to my lovely castle, I will give you wine and chocolate....You go with her and what...Its rotten flesh or lamb liver, its smell of blood from lips bitten in despair, its a damn disaster as it is, without these dried flowers on the grave...I did my calculations...Three and half thousands of people are having it, another three wanting it. I better go buy garlic for next few centuries to come.

          imawallflower

          Voloptuous, fierceful, and as someone said, "decadent". Orchid in all it's darkness. For sure not a every day fragrance... and one spray is JUST enough.

          Become a member of this online perfume community and you will be able to add your own reviews.

          All Reviews By Date

          Old School Tie

          Wow. New website format is just awful. Almost unusable for me. Why is there no way to choose the classic webpage, why are we default forced to have the mobile site?

          ayken

          Okay TF knows how to come up with unique perfumes, and this one here is a game changer. Wish i was introduced to it way before, yet nothing is lost as I am definitely going to get this.
          I am going to keep this simple- first sniff and i was taken into a deep mysterious land, where I could smell the earth tones and make myself feel at home. Yet the scent made me feel so confident and beautiful too.
          On paper it was musky and almost boring, but on my skin it did magic and the sweetness came through and created a powerful combo between the sweet and musky.
          I knew there was something in this that made me feel more connected to it, maybe it is the patchouli or the gardenia in it that overpowerd on my skin, but it sure made me feel nice.
          This is in my opinion better than the velvet orchid one because I lean towards unisex scents and the velvet orchid is more feminine than i expected.
          this perfume is a must really. Haven't smelled anything like this that's on the market currently.
          And this shouldn't be labelled as date night perfume. where it whenever you want really because this is one of those perfumes that is only for you to feel better not to please the crowd yet i would believe it would do both.
          one spray is enough to have it linger on you but if you want others to notice it too then make it 2. really it is so beautiful, almost emotional.

          8 hours later
          and I can still smell it (i sprayed it once) and it is as lovely as before.

          amer hossam

          this amazing perfume
          very powerful
          very unique
          spicy also

          smell 10/10
          longevity 12/10
          silage 10/10

          overall for me its awesome winter night perfume .

          rebecca.carven.mckinnon

          Smells ordinary and not diverse in any way. This might smell different and exciting on someone else, but on me it just smells boring and with very little silage (only lasts about an hour). No detectable difference between the initial spray through to the last base notes. Very disappointed considering I paid a heap for a 30ml bottle.

          tibo.t

          La dernière fois que j'ai porté ?a, c'est un homme qui m'a interpellé : "wow ton eau de toilette sent bon !!!"

          ItsChxse

          smell amazing YUMMY!

          TeachOlfactoryArt

          I’m male. I’m on my 3rd bottle. They’re all beastly strong and last forever. On clothes, it’ll even last through a wash!

          On me, it’s spicy, YlangYlang,, funky dark earthy, and chocolate. Very masculine on me.

          Amazing fragrance, better than TF private blends at 10x the power and 1/5 the price!

          shayz

          @agill24245 you defiantly have a fake bottle
          this staff is very strong a best mode last forever!!! nobody can spray this fragrance before bed an get a nice sleep time

          agill24245

          I get about 4-6 hours out of this depending on how much I spray. I find it so comforting I wear it to bed.

          FreddyK

          I know this fragrance quite well. I bought a dupe called Just Jack Orchid Noir. They are really similar. I like the scent. I think it's unisex and a guy could pull this off.

          Rozalina

          This has the same “texture” as Tom Ford’s Noir Pour Femme- spicy, thick, creamy, very unique. However, Noir is the epitome of “warm spicy” to my nose whereas Black Orchid feels “cold spicy.” The truffle note is strong here and I don’t smell any chocolate at all, only umami. It’s certainly a gourmand in that sense but this is like a savory gourmand while Noir is a sweet gourmand. The words “Cold” and “Gothic” come immediately to mind, which is why this doesn’t feel quite right on my skin although I can appreciate Black Orchid’s beauty.

          rociito.moon

          I think this perfume has been my biggest defeat. The aroma is opulent, powerful, wonderful, perfect. In my opinion, very feminine and elegant. But unfortunately, on my skin it does not have any projection, and the duration is very poor (four hours maximum). Totally imperceptible to third parties, which I consider a tragedy, given that I am fascinated by perfumes that can be felt from afar. My bottle is from 2019; I'm sure I have an original version (not at all cheap) and I haven't tried the previous formulations, so I wouldn't dare say if the problem is the bottle or my skin.

          grapefruit352

          This is very very great fragrance..warm and at the same time, magical and seducing. I would like to get it for wintertime- it will warm me up here on the North.
          The fragrance is not overpowering, long-lasting and absolutely feels no alcohol denat- its just a a pure elixir. I feel really vanilla, orchid, chocolate, incenses- its all very well blended together and creates a soothing and very enjoyable scent. Chocolate typically I do not like in the fragrances, but here it is alright! Reminds me slightly other spicy vanilla warm scents with a hint of flowers like Armani Code or YSL Black Opium.. but this one is deeper and richer fragrance.

          CAR0LINA

          I love how this fragrance takes me on a journey. I smell so many different notes dancing around me as I spray this and go through to the dry down. I smell spice, sweetness, delicate floral and finally the most decadent vanilla. I truly don't want the journey to end. I love Chanel, Flowerbomb, Miss Dior and many fragrances like them but this fragrance is very special to me because it evokes my sense of adventure, anticipation for a big surprise and enjoying the journey along the way. Happy scenting.

          Dabarefootbombshell

          If you bought your Tom Ford Black Orchid on Ebay NIB for 100ml for $45- $60 I don't want to hear your whining about longevity because you my friend bought a fake. End of story. All the glitters isn't god and you really do get what you pay for. I am reading comment on how cheap the bottle is etc. and the real TF Black Orchid is not in a cheap bottle and the cap does not stick. I have been rocking TF Black orchid for 11 years now and I have gotten about 4 bottles, reformulation etc. and this this juice is AMAZING!!! I will always have this scent in my collections. I feel sexy and alluring and even though it's very popular it smells different on each wearer.

          Old School Tie

          My original bottle of this, bought in 2007 I believe and for my wife although more or less stolen by me, was manufactured in the USA. Every subsequent iteration of this I have had gave been lesser in terms of smell and performance - all made in Switzerland. My personal opinion is that the “true” smell of TFBO is how the US offering was and THAT is why all the disappointment. I think I will give the new parfum a go very soon but this month it’s going to be Farrow & Ball paint and a pair of George Cox shoes....so cheer up #mimircks and join me along with several other in buying the new parfum and layering it with the EDP.....no use in crying over spilled milk.

          mimircks

          So much hyped promise in this fragrance, so much disappointment once obtained. THIS is why I stopped buying "must haves." If I have a scent from TF, I "must have" a fragrance - from the expensive TF - that LASTS more than 2 hours! This isn't it. For that reason alone, I will not be on board for the other TF "must haves." Too bad, really. Rose Prick & Lost Cherry sound like scents I would love, but, alas, like a disappointing lover, do not last.

          Sighofwinter

          24 year old male here...
          This perfume is just ...wow. It's so dark, genderless, alluring, sexy as all hell and drives me mad.
          I wear it at night alot, just one spray of a 2020 batch lasts around 18 hours on my skin, with 2-3 hours of solid strong projection, and then settles to a nice 2-3 feet bubble for around 6 hours then a gorgeous skin scent able to smell around 5-10cm away. It goes into some sort of dark vanilla chocolate on me, and don't listen to people who say "oh wear this perfume in summer, but no in winter" or vice versa. I wear this perfume year round and it pleases everyone around me.

          Scentflower

          This perfume is not for everyone. Like most Tom Ford perfumes you either love them or hate them. I 90% love this perfume. Its very unique, I honestly don't know if there's even a dupe for it. It's unisex, I can really see it on any gender. Its masculine being a strong, heavy, spicy powerful fragrance. It has a little sweetness in the note of vanilla that give it a sweet touch women would like it. Don't forget it is a spicy heavy perfume so if you don't like spice you won't like this.

          On initial spray I really get the sweet spice, I love it! My problem is at the absolute end of wearing it, like 7+hours the scent gets a little stale smelling on me. Almost a little body odor like. It comes to the point I think about washing it off and switching perfumes. This is at the 7+ hour mark. Normally I'd respray my perfume to freshen it up. However this perfume is so strong your not going to want to respray. I'll save this perfume for a night out or a special occasion where maybe I won't be wearing it all day and I still have all the notes that I love present.

          Amna Al-Rubayee

          Oh my! What should I say about this gem? This is everything that I want my winter signature to be. As a newbie, all that I can tell that it's earthy at the opening before a few spices and lots of florals begin to appear after a few minutes with tasty chocolate and warm amber in the dry down.
          It's not the safest blind-buy but it is for me because I love very potent, risky, and unique scents.
          the projection & longevity are insane!

          Rating:
          Longevity:10/10
          Sillage:10/10
          Age: For mature women. I don't think that this is likable or suitable for the young crowd
          Seasons: fall/winter
          Gender: Unisex but feminine leaning
          Reflection: Reflects the image of the modern mature woman with a strong personality
          Repurchase? Of course, since it's cooler days stable unless it's reformulated to a worse version

          EauDeNoir

          I bought a sample, I enjoyed it but I probably won't buy the full bottle. I'm glad I got to try it, It develops slowly over repeated wears and over the few weeks that I wore it I always picked up on something different. My favourite was when I wore it to a BBQ, it mixed with the smell of wood smoke and bourbon really well. Initially I found it too sweet and mature, it is the scent that I would expect a powerful and serious person to wear. It's wonderful stuff, but I'll enjoy smelling it on other people from now on.

          jellisunc

          This is a weird one. I originally tried it years ago as a free sample from an order. I heard good things so was excited to try it out. Upon the initial spray I hated it and immediately scrubbed it off, but it wouln't go away! I threw the sample out and never looked back, until a few months ago.

          I got an incredible deal on ebay (50ml for under $30 that was slightly used) so I decided to try it again knowing my nose had matured. Now I love this and just about every other Tom Ford I have had the opportunity to get my nose on.

          The initial spray is quite strong and overbearing, very floral. But then it slowly dries down into a beautiful vanilla based scent that is dark and decadent. Truly one of the best fragrances I have ever got my nose on, a masterpiece.

          This thing will easily last 12 hours and you will still smell it the next day after a shower. Sillage and projection fills a room like no other. People recommend this for cooler months, which I think is ideal, but I have been rocking it this summer with 1 spray and I still love it.

          I think this is perfectly unisex as it smells amazing on both my wife and me.

          Overall - 10/10 for me. This is daring and alluring, but beautiful while being dark and heavy. Get your nose on this and give it some time, you will fall in love.

          sarah kind

          Nothing smells overtly masculine about this fragrance, but it would be very sexy on a man. As a woman, I can see this being unisex. My scent association may not be like most. This makes me think of tropical humid nights if I image this on a woman. Maybe because I keep getting an image of a nice gift shop from this smell. The only times I actually went to gift shops was when I was little while going to the beach. That’s why I feel clueless when people associate tuberose and gardenia with summer time. I’ve never worn sun tan lotion and the tropical areas I’ve been to are never filled with blossoming flowers while I’m there. I could also feel this way because I only sprayed only a little and it’s super humid and hot outside.

          t3nlikescookies

          Male here. This is probably my favorite oriental perfume. So unique, complex and unmistakeable, dark and sensual. Personally I'd say it's a bit feminine leaning. I very much enjoy wearing it but it is definitely not for everyone which is perfectly fine. Somehow I don't want everyone around me smelling like Black Orchid.
          I get a lot of mushroom in the opening and then predominantly floral notes. Around 6-8 hours later it's just pure vanilla.
          Overall Black Orchid is a legendary masterpiece. It smells like nothing else I know, I suggest you do not blind buy.

          sabbathjoey

          I bought this for my fiancé. I think it’s the sexiest fragrance out there!

          from greece with love

          i am a man and for me this is the sexiest female scent i ve ever smelled

          mesmer000

          So strange and addicting in a confusing way. A gender bender for sure. Smells exactly like how I would imagine a black orchid to smell.

          Fava Beans

          I have a young family, and clubbing is over for me, so I have no use for a full bottle of this. I still picked up a jumbo decant, just to smell it now and again. I really enjoy it.

          Incredibly distinctive. This is going to be the Shalimar or the Youth Dew for a certain generation. The one the kids of the far future will associate with Abu Dylan or Nana Kayla.

          In terms of describing it? I'm struggling. Did you ever want to become romantically involved with a mushroom risotto? Kind of like that? Plus velvety flowers and some kind of insane deconstructed chocolate fruitcake at a Michelin starred restaurant?

          Yeah - I stink at describing. Just go grab a sample. You'll know right away whether it's for you.

          savage

          Well...I couldn't stop smelling this enchanting aroma from the vial of my tester, however, it didn't develop well on my skin. The opening was fine and spicy and floral enough, but the drydown (the part of a fragrance to which I look forward the most) was a one-dimensional, lackluster vanilla. Not even French vanilla. Like, generic, imitation, fat-free, sugar-free, plain old "vanilla". I could detect nothing else. I feel so ripped off. :'(

          vanillaOrpatchouli

          It took me months to realize this... But I'm pretty sure this was inspired by angel. The patchouli, the dark chocolate + some natural smelling notes unlike angel which is a synthetic mess compared to this

          Mc1995

          Such an amazing unique fragrance. Modern day Shalimar to me. A scent so genderless and interesting. Multifaceted. Leans feminine and also leans masculine. Full of notes so well blended. Incredible longevity, really performs. And gives off a beautiful trail of scent.

          salomè22

          This is the modern day Chanel No.5 in my opinion, it literally encompasses everything that is Tom Ford, decadence, sluttiness, modernIty. I’ve had my 50ml bottle since I was a junior in high school, and it performs just as good as the first time I sprayed it. This also garners compliments, a lot of compliments. On my skin it opens balmy, with a decayed sweet accord that I can’t identify, but it’s earthy and slightly spicy. The florals start to kick in, it’s still strong but the florals give it a fresh sweetness, this is my favorite stage because I get little whiffs of rose, & a sharp dirty smell, like sweat. Once it completely dries down, it’s still so beautiful, but not as sharp, more soft, musky, very faint wood. Overall it’s a glorious fragrance, It’s also very beautiful in summer, despite it being so strong, if done lightly it blossoms beautifully. If I could see someone wearing this it would probably be Marlene Dietrich, it’s completely androgynous fragrance. Performance is really good, I get 8 hours on skin, and I could smell it on clothes days later. It’s so strong though, If you get headaches easily, stay away.

          empathyboy

          This perfume has a lot of hype and my partner loves it but whenever I walk into the room after it has been applied, I always get hit with the sensation that every single Yankee Candle that was ever invented have all been burning at once. I find the notes too loud, too muddy, too synthetic and just too much.

          Wacaz

          MALE HERE
          From like to love.
          Tried it in summers, applied on cloths, it was projecting so well that it was cloying. Smelled good.
          Now in pre-fall days, applied it on skin and it was great. Projection and longevity decreased but smell improved. It's so delicious that you like to drink it. Rich, luxurious and gourmand.
          I don't enjoy sweet fragrances much, or those who have feminish touch, but this one is an exception. I would surely wear it.
          Waiting for winters to enjoy it even more. ??

          GinCatsBooks

          Opulent, enveloping and full on. Black Orchid is the height of luxury to me, its a scent that I have always been aware of but was never quite sure weather it was overly hyped, until I actually tried it on my skin in the winter last year, that, dear reader, was when everything changed.

          In the bottle, BO smells good, but to my nose, nothing special, the magic is when its applied to skin; I get a somewhat fruity, lactonic floral with smokey, earthy facets that pulls it all together.

          The opening is quite harsh, there is a lot of citrus, patchouli and also something quite bitter which I'm assuming is the dark chocolate note, thankfully the harshness quickly subsides to reveal a wonderfully rich, creamy gardenia with some fruity undertones and a bit of jasmine, as the day wears on, the incense, truffle and patchouli start to emerge and round the entire composition off.

          Longevity is beastly, I could safely wear this at 8:30am and go straight through to 10pm, shower and still smell it on my skin, silage is strong, one spray on my wrist left a strong cloud behind me.

          Considering I tend to prefer lighter scents, think along the lines of Diptyque Philosykos, Jo Malone Wood Sage and Sea Salt, etc, I really LOVE Black Orchid, it'll be out in the cooler weather alongside Dark Amber and Ginger Lily, Botanical Essence No 15, Narciso Rodriguez For Her and English Oak and Hazelnut, delicious stuff!

          P.S I'm breaking all rules and currently am wearing this during a super hot day in the UK, light application, not cloying or stuffy, just utterly divine!

          OhOk

          I can only stand this in the summer when the heat diffuse the potency of this scent. This reminds of a bubble gum used to love as a child but not as sweet. It's a fine scent overall , sometimes a little too strong. I have never had a very positive reaction, it's ok borderine kinda bad... in my humble opinion. I think Mr.Ford may have tried too much with this one...kind of like his movie he directed

          Adaneth

          I have a free sample of this. It's laying on my perfume tray and I'm not even touching it. It smells good, but definitely doesn't match my personality. Definitely not a signature perfume as you can't wear it everyday. Seems more appropriate for nights, or fall months.

          Nothing special or mind blowing. Though it smells good, it's not attractive to me as a perfume.

          celestiaI

          Insane longevity!
          For me it was headache inducing, but it does smell really luxurious, I don't like the smell much but couldn't deny that.

          Farangismua

          This perfume is sooo bougee and rich! It screams bouuuuggggeeeee!!!! You need just one spritz and it will smell everywhere! It comes of very strong but once blended it will smell like a Lady Boss. All those notes literally come together and make this perfume so special. Id recommend it as a night time. Winter

          danygurl06

          I really thought I was going to hate this based on the reviews. This smells sexy. Don’t hate me but to my nose BO has a note in it that smells like a Hollister or Abrocrombie & Fitch male cologne. I haven’t even been into one of those store is years, but I recognize that type of smell. This would be the grown up version though. This is the sexy male model with some age on him and in a nice suit.

          Nothing smells overtly masculine about this fragrance, but it would be very sexy on a man. As a woman, I can see this being unisex. My scent association may not be like most. This makes me think of tropical humid nights if I image this on a woman. Maybe because I keep getting an image of a nice gift shop from this smell. The only times I actually went to gift shops was when I was little while going to the beach. That’s why I feel clueless when people associate tuberose and gardenia with summer time. I’ve never worn sun tan lotion and the tropical areas I’ve been to are never filled with blossoming flowers while I’m there. I could also feel this way because I only sprayed only a little and it’s super humid and hot outside.

          Over all, I’m happy that I tried this out. I don’t know if this is full body worthy for me. I see this more so on my male friend who usually smells delicious in sweet fragrances. I’m seriously questioning if my decant is real because this is not polarizing at all to me.

          Edit: I forgot to include that the info written above only applies to the dry down. The initial top notes smell like someone sprayed a bunch of different And slightly conflicting fragrances at a southern boutique. Even then, it doesn’t smell gross. Just wait for the dry down and then it smells great.

          Also, what gives it the masculine edge is the patchouli. Patchouli smells like the stereotypical men’s cologne note on my skin.

          Nourhan

          What I noticed about this perfume is that people either love it or hate it. I absolutely ADORE it. I feel like a seductive lady whenever i wear it, and ready to take over the world

          Tweez

          I bought this as a blind buy, which is risky, I know, but seduced by the fact that chocolate was quite high on people’s radars and jasmine wasn’t. I am not a lover of jasmine.I have been wearing it now for about an hour and I’m sad to say I’m not sure about it, I was expecting more of a gourmand fragrance ( I love Angel for example) but I can smell noticeable jasmine and smokiness. I almost smell curry sometimes,, which must be the spice, though didn’t quite think it would be curry. I am going to give it a while longer, but really not sure and a bit disappointed. I was hoping for more floral, spiced chocolate. I don’t recommend this as a blind buy.

          Evlizabeth

          I like how it dries down but the opening is a bit strange

          sahar1912

          be aware!!!
          From what I've read the newer Black Orchid seems to have been reformulated and no longer as potent as the older release.

          smellsbells

          seeking a bottle to swap...pm me in usa. thanx love this fragrance

          retroguncounty

          This is what a hot bisexual vampire would wear to seduce you and your friend

          acl17

          MALE OVER HERE

          I can see why some would describe as more of a feminine scent and the comments are probably further proof.

          Personally I love the scent in fact its in my favourites from what I own. It has got me a lot of compliments but I tend to wear it in formal settings where I'm dressed up in shirts/suits or dinners/balls.

          I also feel like this is super attractive on girls ??

          But yeah just wanted to comment for any males in doubt of wearing it believe me you can pull it off.

          Longevity 11/10 (12hrs)
          Projection 8/10
          Scent 9/10

          Overall 9/10

          elizurofsinai

          I have been trying basically every popular fragrance I can get my hands on.. I am usually disappointed, because I am super picky.
          This has been one of the very few fragrances that’s worth all the hype!
          This is very unique. It smells like quality. I’m so glad I finally found a scent worthy of the praise!
          It has so many different smells, but they work so well together. they are balanced, but still varied enough that you can smell them all, and it isn’t just a jumbled mess thrown together.

          A definite Love!!!

          brightflashes

          Ok! I tried it. No matter how deep this goes (and it goes deep), I cannot stop smelling the vanilla and it's giving me a headache.

          Some will love it; apparently a LOT love it.

          To me, it smells like the collective smell of 10 grandfathers in the same room.

          Not a fan.

          smellalicious

          This opened with a quick blast of after-shave, but immediately hinted at the promise of things to come. So instead of rushing to the sink to wash it off, I let it develop. While it definitely leans masculine to my nose, there's a layer of dark, spicy, seductive floral that comes though, making it uni-sex in the right setting. For example, this isn't an office perfume, but would be a good night on the town. Not bar hopping, but expensive, dressed-up, got dropped-off by a limo type of night. Nothing light or girly about this, and I envision someone wearing this when they need to feel in charge, confident, and about to own the night. I don't see this being a signature scent, more of a special occasion scent, and while I'll periodically use the deluxe sample I have, there's no full bottle in my future. Too many other scents out there that I love, and this one just doesn't make the cut for me.

          yukitanonton

          I often wear colder weather perfume in daylight here in hot humid Jakarta weather, but not this one. As much as I love the scent of BO, this needs specific kind of situation when I want to wear it. Hot humid day it is not. It is choking and super long lasting, I sold my bottle 3 years ago. But i miss the scent and ordered a 10ml decant, seems enough and can last at least one year with those 10 ml. Definitely for colder environment. Scent 5/5, versatility 1/5

          ariej2010

          I was curious about Tom Ford parfumes, I smelled Lost Cherry and it was not me. I ordered a sample of Velvet Orchid but on my skin it was not flattering and gave me the ugliest migraines I have ever experienced, but my mother loved it!
          I read carefully the notes and review for Black Orchid, people did not liked it so I decided to get the 100 mL bottle and I loved it. It smelled like my mother's kitchen when she baked her spices and molasses cake!!.
          It also reminds me of the aroma of the perfect Chai Tea!

          Balletflowers

          I really like this. It’s not my typical go to & I think my nose is evolving lol. It’s strong, masculine, spicy. The prominent notes here are definitely patchouli & incense, so if you don’t like that steer clear. As the scent settles after 15mins or so, you get the warm hints of amber, vetiver, sandalwood & then the floral notes emerge, orchid being dominant. Personally, I find it very masculine, so much so that my brothers are hooked now & want a bottle. I like to warm it up a notch by adding Kayali Vanilla 28 & it becomes perfect & addicting together. My friend came over the other day, it was warm, she wanted to try this, we were standing in the open garage, she spritz 3 sprays on her chest, it filled the entire house all the way upstairs, mind you all the windows were open too. The scent stayed in the house for several hours even when she left! This is a beast mode fragrance that will fill a whole house & last until you scrub it off. You definitely get what you pay for! However with all that said, this is definitely not a safe blind buy, it’s an acquired taste. Try a free sample from Sephora & test it out. I will say that I believe most men will love it for themselves so it may be a safe buy for them.

          hollymichaelm

          This is my kind of perfume in so many ways - A big, medicinal, borderline obnoxious first impression with a sexy, earthy, deep dry down.

          This is a night-time perfume and best suits somewhat synthetic environments (think high-rise bars, goth clubs, black tie events). I have smelt this on women during the day and it smells ALL WRONG. I've worn this to work and it's mad me feel sick.

          This is a sexy and confident scent. It needs a dark and/ or sexy environment to absorb its vibe. This is not flirty or friendly - it's sexy, confident and high-end. Cara Delevingne is the perfect embodiment of this scent.

          I love it - wish I'd bought a smaller bottle because I don't have enough opportunities to wear it.

          Ghaith Shakaroun

          As I first tried it in the store, I felt something Woody or pine-like at first...could be spiced up sandalwood. But the magic emerges slowly as it is acomplex fragrance that although the earthiness of the truffle and patchouli is dominating yet chocolate and fruits whisper calmly in the back ground, along with the other notes till a dark, poisonous breath of air slaps you in the face.
          It's like you walked into a garden of poisoned, dark colored plantations that you have never seen before. Dark, mysterious,and sensual earthiness that is too strong for you but very addictive to the brain, before the senses.
          This is how a woman should smell. My second encounter with this sexy beast was when a woman rode on the bus wearing it; my heart almost jumped out of my chest, beating. Not everyone liked it, some even complained of its harshness but I quickly turned to her and said "Black Orchid, it's for few women"
          Definitely for the Alpha female with special style of clothes and bold character.
          It's timeless, unique, and too sexy for a man even though I know men that wear it since it is very bold and rough.
          I imagine only lone she-wolf type of women wearing this, definitely, not for playful nice girls...this is pure evil in a bottle.

          SenpaiHannah

          I’ve had this perfume for 3 years now and it still hasn’t ran out. A little goes a long way and the scent lasted at least 24 hours on me. Super long lasting. Not a scent for everyone though. Makes me smell like a rich cougar.

          AlexandraShort

          To me, this is unisex. I’m female but I cannot stand any female fragrances so far except this. I’m pleased with this scent! Not overly feminine as I like it :)

          smellsbells

          I haved heard this has been reformulated??

          Tomh222

          This smells like black licorice

          Sighofwinter

          I'm a 23year old man and I have no clue why this is marketed for women, this is beautifully unisex. It smells totally different on either gender, for me it smells so luxury, relaxing, dark, alluring and just delicious. I am wearing this evrry day in New Zealand in the winter currently (also tobacco vanille). My friends 2017 bottle lasts upwards of 24hours on me, and my late 2019 lasts about 16. Beastly.

          antihero

          I have had no response in Forum, sorry to ask here.
          Has anybody noticed a difference in Black Orchid?
          Has it been reformulated?

          Thank you.

          The box is different as is the perfume, very thin and an initial alcohol blast.

          I am worried.

          jacksparrow_1700

          There is something about this fragrance that's almost medicinal/menthol-y. After reading the notes I do get chocolate and truffle. It's definitely sweet but I can understand how it's unisex. Also it lasts forever! I had a card sprayed with Black Orchid in my purse and it was still strong days later, I haven't tried it on my skin yet but it seems like it it's one of those scents that transfers easily through touch. It might be too mature/dark for me but I do like it.

          aldinatic

          It's a cloudy/rainy day and I'm layering this with pink sugar-for a better mood, it works! interesting chocolate/patchouli/ orchid perfume.

          RachelSeun

          I can see how Black Orchid works well for both men and women. To my nose, Black Orchid is an amazing body of work which is spicy, loud, piercing and bitter from the opening to the dry down. It demands your attention from just one spray alone, inviting you on a journey into its dark and strange world. Whether you love it or you hate it, Black Orchid is unforgettable and commanding, smoky and rich and would make a very bold statement if you ever chose to wear this as your signature scent. A room filling fragrance that works amazing for those special occasions.

          4trl0ver

          I finally purchased a 50 ml bottle, and today i mustered enough courage to spray 1 spray om my forearm because I knew i was gonna be home all the day, here's my experience:

          ---1 hour mark (heavy heavy projection)---

          started heavy on mixed sweet sweet notes of caramel, vanilla, truffle, patchuli, dried fruits a little bit of spices, these completely overshadow the citruses, or at least my nose can't pick any up

          ---rest of the perfumes life---
          The above went on for 1 hour or so, where after that all my nose picks up is the sweet truffle and caramel, unfortunately on my skin

          It is possible that my skin drank it all, because after 3 hours it became calmed and close to skin scent. Again to my nose
          -----------------------------------------------------------
          Disclaimer
          I have not smelled Mexican chocolate, might be the caramel like scent I'm picking up. this was tried at home, I don't know how other's noses pick this up.
          To my nose this is quite pleasing and sophisticated, I don't pick any of the bodily odor or sweat as others have mentioned >>>
          -----------------------------------------------------------

          Projection
          Heavy projection for as long at possibly 3-4 hours ( as other have mentioned)

          Scent
          Serious on the attention grabbing, I could get whiffs of it from my forearm and it smells unique, unlike any other perfume I have in my collection.People
          pleasing? no data yet.
          But I did quite enjoyed every whiff.

          Longevity
          On my skin 1 spray on forearm can still smell a bit of the sweet caramel and truffle, 11 hours have passed as I am writing this.

          Final Verdicts
          Scent:9/10 beautiful scent
          Longevity: 9.5/10 long lasting
          Projection: 8/10 very good projection
          uniqueness: 9.5/10 very unique experience
          Versatility: 5/10 Not a dumb reach only special occasion

          Blind buy? For me it was a good experience but for many it might not be if you want a scent you want to use everyday, this may not serve that purpose, but its a scent that you can use once in a while if you want to dress up and make heads turn your way as you pass.

          Kitty9

          imagine In the evening, I was walking to Nightclub Full of beautiful girls mixed with Beautiful gay man and hot lesbians.this fragrance smell just like Mixed,It's everything.I like the bitter sweetness.and The smell of headaches I just love it..

          Marivictory

          Got a full bottle in hopes of having an earthy, spicy, chocolatey, and bewitching fragrance. I agree that this resembles the scent of certain stores like H&M like the wafting scent that is almost oily but also clean and almost incense like. It is hard to explain but it definitely reminds me of that.

          This is a great warm unisex scent. I have tested it on paper and on clothing and it lasts hours and projects at arm's length well. I am acidic and I noticed it does not last as long on my skin.

          If you are the type to buy the EDP hoping it lasts well because nothing usually lasts long on your skin - I am quite sad to say on my skin this only lasted an hour. It is summer here so maybe that is a big factor. If you do live in a cold climate I am sure this is best for that.

          Overall this is a great fragrance from Tom Ford just not for the warm weather - unfortunately but of course I like it so much on my clothes I might just keep spraying it anyway.

          There is also this cloying creaminess and fruity note that I cannot tell what it is exactly because it blends with the chocolate earthy and other thick notes.

          piyux

          Except for the patchouli, Tom Ford Black Orchid opens with a combination and strong projection of multiple notes that seem to group among themselves rather than being identified as isolated tones. The green patchouli gives the fragrance an earthy, fresh green leaves, old-school and mature vibe. Closely are the sweet tones that come up like chocolate, and fruits mixed with vanilla; the floral tones are side by side with the sweet accords, led by a prominent orchid, which is opulent and rich. The incense and white musk are not as noticeable as these initial accords, they seem to assist in boosting and enhancing the projection of other notes. As the fragrance begins to dry-down, the initial sharpness of the patchouli subsides a bit under the mild powdery effect of the white musk, but remains prominent; the sandalwood adds a soft woody accord; the floral tones move one step up and the fruity accords recede one step, the patchouli still maintains the most prominent position closely followed by the chocolate, floral and fruity accords. The vetiver joins the patchouli adding its green accord. As Tom Ford Black Orchid approaches its full dry-down, the initial strong projection subsides and becomes moderate. Once Tom Ford Black Orchid has reached its full dry-down, it can be summarized as a strong to moderate, green and earthy patchouli, chocolate, floral (mostly orchid), and fruity fragrance with very soft woody accords. The fragrance feels bold, classy, delectable, earthy, elegant, exotic, expensive, slightly more feminine than masculine, delectable, floral, formal, gourmand, herbaceous, high-quality, imposing, mature, nicely-blended, slightly old-school, refined, rich, sweet, and very pleasant.

          BATCH REVIEWED: 2020
          WOW RATING: 10/10. The notes in this fragrance are very strong and impressive.
          DISLIKE RATING: 4/10. The green, earthy patchouli gives the fragrance an old-school and classy vibe that some people will find unpleasant and evocative of old fragrances.
          UNIQUENESS: 9/10. The notes in Tom Ford Black Orchid are nicely blended.
          MASS APPEAL: 2/10. Although the gourmand and fruity notes are very mass-appeal, the green patchouli is strong and comes above all other accords.
          PROJECTION: 4/10. Very good, about 4 feet around the wearer.
          SILLAGE: 6/10. Excellent, about 6 feet behind the wearer.
          APPLICATION: Two to four atomizations. More could make the fragrance offensive or invasive.
          LONGEVITY: 5/10. Very good, with about three hours of good projection.
          SEASONS: Fall and winter. Also, colder nights and climate-controlled environments.
          OCCASIONS: Formal events, outdoor gatherings, casual, holidays, romantic, dating, clubbing.
          VERSATILITY: 5/10. Moderate.
          GENDER: Unisex with a slight tilt to the feminine side. The green patchouli which is dominant in this fragrance is known to be unisex, as such this fragrance can be considered unisex. However, the orchid and other floral accords follow closely creating a slight tilt to the feminine side.
          AGES: 30 and above. This is a fragrance ideal for mature wearers.
          RECOMMENDATION: Tom Ford Black Orchid is an exquisite and very refined fragrance that presents itself as the ideal fragrance for a very formal occasion. It can be found discounted for under $90 which provides a great cost/value ratio. This is a great buy for females and a good one for mature males that appreciate the tones in this fragrance.
          BLIND-BUY: No. The patchouli is known for giving fragrances an old-school vibe. The floral tones are also very noticeable. Sample it first.
          SIMILAR: The following examples of fragrances in the same genre. They share some similarities. Acqua Di Parma Men Colonia Essenza EDP features patchouli, strong musk, lemon and flowers, another fragrance advertised as masculine that feels more feminine; Chanel Les Exclusifs Coromandel EDP is a balsamic, woody, spicy and strong green, patchouli, and musky fragrance; Frederic Malle Portrait of a Lady features patchouli, roses, and woods; Jovoy Paris Psychedelique EDP contains amber, balsamic, patchouli, and spicy notes; Parfums De Marly Lippizan features citrus, strong patchouli, earthy, spicy, and powdery accords; Parfums De Marly Nisean features woody, spicy, softer patchouli, and ambery tones; Roja Parfums Scandal Cologne Parfum is a woody, spicy, citrus, strong patchouli, and floral fragrance; Tiziana Terenzi – Ursa is a woody, leather, patchouli, spicy and nutty fragrance; Tom Ford Noir De Noir features earthy, roses, patchouli, woody and spicy notes; Xerjoff Casamorati 1888 brings spicy, floral patchouli, and woody accords.
          SUMMARY: A strong to moderate, green and earthy patchouli, chocolate, floral (mostly orchid) and fruity fragrance with very soft woody accords that feel bold, classy, delectable, earthy, elegant, exotic, expensive, slightly more feminine than masculine, delectable, floral, formal, gourmand, herbaceous, high-quality, imposing, mature, nicely-blended, slightly old-school, refined, rich, sweet, and very pleasant.

          ben805

          Black Orchid is exotic and alluring, the earthy truffle and mushroom type notes add a lot of personality to the floral background, most definitely unisex. I only wish my 2019 bottle has better performance though, projection and sillage are average, only about 6hr longevity. I could go about 5 to 6 sprays easily on this one without choking anyone out.

          From what I've read the newer BO seems to have been reformulated and no longer as potent as the older release. Maremma from Tiziana Terenzi is almost a clone of the BO but without the truffle note, it's less earthy and with better performance. When I'm in the mood for some truffle/mushroom funk I'll wear the BO instead of Maremma, something about that type of odor is quite delicious and addicting, it's the same reason why I'd prefer the PDM Layton Exclusif over the Layton because of the dirty smelling funk.

          You can find the BO from most discounters, it's a must-have in my collection for sure.

          Texasgirl123

          I absolutely ADORE TF Black Orchid, but my husband does not. It is one of my favorites and this makes me so sad as it gives him a headache. I have a 3.4 oz bottle that has about 2/3 left if anyone wants to swap. I will cry to see it go, but I can't wear it around him....sigh!

          ky4r4

          Fortunately I order just a sample of this during the lock down and not the full bottle. It is awful. If has a very strong and pungent note that destroys the composition. It is very strong and acid, the most similar thing that comes in my mind is cat urine.Terrible. Wonderful duration and sillage however.

          forêt

          I got one of those nice travel sprays of this so I can really play with it for a while before I have to get a big bottle- because it is an instant love for me! I can see how someone picked up a cucumber smell but only because they mentioned it. It’s floral but also reminds me of some kind of dark berries.. Very interesting scent.

          cristina.magandi

          I expected so much from this due to the positive reviews so I was really disappointed when it didn't work for me.

          The opening is so harsh. It's like I'm spraying a very potent men's cologne. I was aware that this is very potent, I just wasn't expecting it to smell like it does.

          The drydown turned out to be a different scent than the opening but still very manly for me.

          HUBBY SAID I SMELL LIKE A GRANDPA ??????

          e.nikander

          Do not blind buy! As many has said, this is dependent on your skin chemistry and can go "mmm nice!", or "help!"

          I got the chance to buy an almost full 100ml bottle for a great price and thought: "I love dark spicy scents, this will surely work for me, nothing has turned completely bad on my skin before". Well.. When I sprayed this on my skin, it was like I got demons in my sinuses. Some unholy reaction turned this to moldy cucumbers, wet mushrooms and the cheapest most chemical cologne imaginable. The only fragrance I have had to get off quick, because I was becoming sick. It was becoming Axe from hell.. Very sad, because it sure was nice on paper.

          I gave it to a family member who wears it often and it smells warm and spicy on him, really nice.

          Projection/longevity is excellent!

          TheNazMan

          First of all, this is a masterpiece. I know this perfume is down the middle for a lot of people, I'm on the love side. The age old question of is this a woman's or a man's fragrance is that it simply is both. I'm a man and this smells fantastic on me, and I would also like to smell this on a woman, the definition of unisex.

          This smells like mystery in a bottle, sweet but dark, light but heavy. Very very sensual. A lot of people say don't wear this to the office or to work I can understand that. But if you got light it should be ok, as with all fragrances in the office.

          As mentioned, this is a very sensual fragrance so it best suits these situations, and it will work if you want people to feel attracted to you. Really though, don't wear this in a tracksuit or shorts, you need to respect it and it will respect you, dress right for it and have the confidence it has, and it will be your little magic potion.

          Qabalah4Kidz

          I'm still early on in my fragrance obsession but this ties Guerlain's Vetiver as my number 1 favorite of all time...so far. Both give me a very emotional reaction. Not anything sad but just strange imagery that I can't really account for.

          Black Orchid feels dangerous in a feminine way that I feel Noir by Tom Ford feels dangerous in a masculine way. It doesn't make me feel sad but it has a sadness to it. When I hate the world I drench myself in this and subject myself to the awful people we have to share this planet with. It feels very austere and serious yet incredibly sexual. This seems like Virgo's perfume. Sensual yet irritated.

          The opening is absolutely ridiculous. On my skin it's a loud, beautifully blended mix of chocolate, florals (ylang-ylang in particular, my god),vanilla and every once in a while something kind of odd (is it the truffle?). I used to get a "pickled" impression from this that I no longer get. I can't explain that. I really can't explain much. This is dark and mysterious but not heavy to my nose. The only time that would be inappropriate to wear this would be in the middle of the day in 100 degree weather. Otherwise, I personally feel this fragrance's profile lends itself well to being worn just about whenever. A little heat actually seems to stimulate some of the character.

          Once it dries down it seems to mute itself into a quieter version of how it started. It kicks and screams itself into exhaustion. The florals recede and I'm left with a nice chocolatey and vanillic base. On my skin, it lasts about ~9 hours from start to finish. I don't get the insane projection I hear a lot of people talk about. I did buy it in 2020 though and I've always heard that Black Orchid was most abrasive when it first dropped and that it has since become milder due to reformulations. Then again, I'm truly a hermit. So maybe it does project and I just don't have people to confirm this but I don't, unfortunately, get a lot of random whiffs from this. I have to search them out. Which is fine because, again, I'm a hermit and that's what we do. Oh, what the glory days of original Black Orchid must've been. I truly am envious of all who got to experience that, as I am truly envious of all those who will inevitably discover this for the first time.

          The branding and image of Tom Ford almost makes me nauseous but they gave us this, so I'll shut up and be thankful.

          Skipcon

          Dark, gourmand, cloying.

          Baring in mind I'm a guy- seems like a lot of guys are going for this one, and to be honest, I suggest going for this as a male. It smells oriental, and it's strong for sure. In terms of Tom Ford, this isn't going to be as strong and a powerhouse as some of the private blend lines, but it's still strong. You can get strong blasts of that truffle note in this, and the chocolate is very norticable in the dry down. Other people are going to like this.

          Longevity- 8/10
          Sillage- 7/10
          Uniqueness- 8/10
          Rating-8/10

          mintelope

          This is one of my favorite perfumes and my second favorite Tom Ford scent next to Tobacco Oud. To me it smells like heavy, dusty, velvet curtains the conceal a speakeasy bar serving up old Fashioneds and Manhattans. I love this scent. I can't think of anything quite like it. Some people might find the dusty curtain accord heavy and cloying, but I find it to be a nice blended cloak of comfort and mystery.

          If anyone has an unloved bottle, feel free to message me. :)

          danielng01

          There are three perfumes I had from Tom Ford as Ombre Leather, Orchid Soleil and this Black Orchid as my three combo of sensual consciousness.

          I love finding a scent that can evaporate me as much as sexy, confident yet it can flatter me secretly lustful. Black Orchid can do this. I always spray this to my silk scarf (wrap around my neck) and the side neck whenever on a date or mingle with my hubby, I tend to be "accidentally" lean my neck so they can sniff this magic. They always get struck then confessed how inviting I am.

          Want to be a sex bomb at night? One spray of Black Orchid on your chest and one spray of Orchid Soleil on your wrist. See the magic how people turn their heads to you.

          The performance is quite great, it lasts almost 6 - 7 hours on my skin and more on my clothes. The silage is simply amazing.

          Longevity: 4/5
          Projection: 4/5
          Uniqueness: 4/5

          samantham-123

          About...7 or 8 years ago i bought a 50ml bottle of this blind because id read all these rave reviews calling this a luxurious, amazing masterpiece.
          I was so excited when I opened it up and sprayed it on my wrist.. but that quickly turned to disappointment when I was repulsed by the smell of it. It was pungent and thick, all I got was rotten mushrooms.
          Back then my favourite fragrances were Armani code and the now discontinued 2012 version of miss dior Cherie. I liked sweet fresh airy scents and this was anything but. I've always been a believer in
          "if u like it wear it" not all perfumes have to be understood or analysed, and if u have to force yourself to like it then it's not worth it. But this was the exception to that rule for me; I just didn't understand what this scent was about. At the naive age of 22 I was thrown by the vibe this scent gives; it's thick, heavy and not at all fresh. It needs confidence from the wearer or it'll wear you, and that's never a good look. Fast forward 8 years and at 30, maybe I'm finally somewhat the Tom ford woman? Lol
          I don't get a sophisticated power vibe from this; it's dark, but in a sinful way. It's sleeping naked on black satin sheets, drinking grey goose on the rocks with a cigarette, it's leather and lace underneath that little black dress.

          It's hard for people to describe how it smells because it's different on each persons body chemistry. On me, the opening still leaves a lot to be desired, it's got that masculine woody pungent smell, like everything in a perfume shop blending in the air all at once. It's like it's trying to tick every olfactory box to me: spicy, sweet, citrus, smokey and woody all at once.
          But once it settles down it's a lot smoother, it's slightly sweet, in a syrupy dark berry way with smokey incense and thick rich woody notes.
          It's one that ill be wearing on a dressed up night out or during the day in winter

          RottigrlNYC

          I purchased a bottle of this back in 2008 and I loved it. I own quite a few of Tom
          fords perfumes so I don’t reach for Black Orchid much anymore. I have noticed that the newer reformulations are nowhere near as nice as the vintage, the newer version smells awful and gives me a stomach ache. It also much weaker, thankfully it didn’t last long on my wrist, maybe a couple hrs. Don’t know what they changed in it but it’s now repulsive to my nose. When I run out, I won’t be repurchasing.

          Cosmicwitch

          I bought a big bottle of this after reading so many good reviews. Unfortunately I wasn't a fan, it's too masculine for my taste. I prefer more sensual,floral and feminine notes.
          The scent is too overpowering powdery, woodsy and spicy not for me.

          FragrantMama

          What can I say about this masterpiece that hasn't already been mentioned? I still remember the day I first smelled this beauty. I closed my eyes and sniffed. I instantly pictured a rare flower blooming deep in the amazon rain forest. Something untouched and beautiful and wild. It smelled earthy, musky and sensual. As the fragrance unfolded I was memorized at its rich complexity. Is this a perfume for every day use? Perhaps not. Is this a perfume that is safe for work? Probably not. But if you have a fancy date and want to feel sexy and wanton and powerful than this is absolutely the right perfume. Every time I wear this my husband can't keep his hands off of me. I will always have this perfume in my collection as I believe it is one of the most unique and beautiful scents ever made. It is 100% love for me.

          mustination

          Complex, Controversial, Jaw-dropping, Chocolaty, Sensual, Dark Flowers, Sweeeet, Extremely Daring, A magnificent release from the house of Tom Ford. This is the only fragrance from the signature collection that can easily be put on the private blend with a flick of fingers.

          1 Spray for your own pleasure at home <3
          2 Sprays when you are going to go outside :*
          3 Sprays when you want to choke people ;)

          *No need to give points for this fragrance because it blows every category out of the water.

          ItalianFrags

          The opening is something else. Can't remember a fragrance that smelled quite like that. If y’all see reviews on YouTube of reactions to how terrible it smells - its because the opening is really nauseating, really overpowering (and I like strong scents).
          The point that matters is this scent is another TF classic. Absolutely fantastic fragrance for fall and winter (you can pull it of in spring as well). Really dark and sweet on the drydown, and it got that wow factor y’all are looking for.
          Don’t blind buy it, some really adore this stuff and some hate it. For me it’s a top 5 in my collection.

          HarryCoates1

          This fragrance, like the other Tom Fords I own (Oud Wood and Tuscan leather), completely changed my perspective on how a man can smell. While the other two are ultra masculine in an almost anti-fresh way, this is sweet and chocolatey fragrance is essentially feminine. But it is unisex in the sense that it brings out a man’s feminine side in a very masculine way, if that makes any sense at all. For me if I wear this I will spray it on an hour before leaving the house as honestly I find the opening, as much as I love it too ‘rotten-fruit’ like to be smelled in public like that. Again, not a bad thing, the skanky ‘truffle’ note is wonderfully artistic and actually pleasant in my opinion, but obviously not crowd pleasing.

          An hour in is where it becomes unisex; an incensey, chocolatey, fantastical patchouli is how I would describe the warm ‘glow’ that emanates from your skin when wearing this. It’s hard to describe, perhaps it is feminine but I don’t really care as it’s just pleasant. Very pleasant, and artistic, I actually deliberately avoid wearing it as it’s addictive. Definitely for cold weather, at least in my case as sweet fragrances don’t generally do it for me. But this fragrance is more than that, it has multiple dimensions and in my opinion perfectly symbolises ‘duality’ in a fragrance, the light and dark in a way that isn’t the generic masculine ‘citrus and woods’ (though it does contain those).

          This, like many other Tom Fords, is a mind blower for those who aren’t used to it, especially as a man. It’s not an aftershave, it challenges you and those around you, it’s very much a fragrance. It’s also very dependent on skin chemistry, it can smell different each time you wear it so it’s risky, and I believe that enhances its appeal.

          Like Tuscan Leather, I give this a 9 due to it’s difficulty to pull off, but if you are brave enough to wear it then don’t expect compliments. At least verbal ones, as like Tuscan leather I find it draws people closer to you, like a people magnet. Only works if you spray lightly.

          9/10 would recommend for confident people of any gender, completely unisex

          slpfrsly_

          Personally, this isn't even close to a unisex fragrance. It's definitely not masculine.

          This is an interesting, challenging, daring and dark feminine fragrance - no doubt about that in my mind. It's way too sweet and floral to be anything but a feminine fragrance - but, undoubtedly, this is a 'wild child' fragrance. This absolutely isn't demure, tasteful femininity: it's balshy, aggressive, alluring...but irrefutably feminine. Those traits aren't just masculine ones. This is powerful femininity.

          I sampled this as a man so in many ways my review ends before it begins. But...

          ...I quite like this - would enjoy this on a woman, but not love it. Probably. It's hard to tell when smelling as I am - wearing this myself. I'll tell you the impression I get from this: a woman in early 30s to late 40s, perhaps has refused to settle down and conform, a bit of a wild streak. Very much appreciates sensory fulfillment - good food and drink, travel and novelty, socialising and meeting people. Perhaps even slightly hedonistic...but not in a sloppy way. Self assurance that comes from a good level of self reliance and independence - and subsequently enjoys the fruits of society. This is her 'going out' fragrance - or for situations where she's happy to be seen and heard (and smelled!). It's definitely a leather jacket kind of scent in the truest sense - both a shield and an invitation.


          I can't really add much more. My knowledge of womens' fragrances is quite poor - no girls I've been close to for any length of time have really been in to anything other than very mainstream, high street brands - so I have nothing to compare and contrast with really. I like that this is floral but also spicy, sweet, and a bit dirty as well. I get how this could be called a bit masculine because it's potent stuff - but, to me, this is a unique kind of femininity that is in no way masculine in the way it might relate to maleness.

          Sillage is crazy, projection is initially very good (can be cloying), but it goes from a beastly, headachey perfume to quite soft in a short space of time. Longevity overall is very good but, again, it ties into projection issues. Generally speaking it performs very well though.

          I would definitely recommend women sample this - it could very easily be a 'love' or a signature scent for some. For men, if you can pull this off - fair play to you. No judgement whatsoever; if a man loves this that is really cool - but for any men reading this thinking it might be truly unisex based on reviews/suggestions, I strongly, strongly recommend looking elsewhere unless you're a big fan of florals (I am not) or, at the very least, sampling first.

          As ever, though, this is only a personal opinion. Don't let it put you off finding out for yourself!

          *original review posted Mar 27 2019*

          Austrian_in_Denmark

          BLACK ORCHID - OH MY GOD!
          I should write the whole review in capitals, because this is larger than life.
          Dark, earthy, flowery, contradictory, overwhelming, and very, very bewitching. This is a cult perfume for a reason.

          Unfortunately, since it is so suggestive, it does not exactly fit all occasions. To me it is a very private perfume. If I wear it in the outer world, then mostly in the evenings: for going to a big party, the opera or a fancy bar or restaurant.

          As much as I love it, I have to admit that this is a perfume that can bother people. I say this because I once sprayed it generously before going to a party, and then my partner's daughter had an accident, and we spent five hours in the fully packed waiting room of the emergency unit at a Copenhagen hospital.
          I wonder how many people got a Black Orchid trauma on top of their existing injuries...

          Atomikbomb_

          Some of these reviews are leaving me facepalming hard.

          25-45? Outgoing? Only for brooding people? Gothic personality? Only for men? Only for women?...GMAFB. I'm normally not as frank as I'd like to be on here, but this time I'll be brutal; it's time for people to shut up with their limited parameters. This fragrance is both notorious and historic, and will belongs in the ultimate hall of fame. To impose an ideal demographic of wearers to something so beautiful is criminal, and it bothers me. If YOU have the guts to wear BO, can dig the strange depth and the dichotomy of cacophony and harmony, don't mind a noticable (and probably not always appreciated fragrance) then you ARE the type of person to wear BO. Male, female, 12 years old, 127 years old, introverted, extroverted...whatever.

          This is actual bottled artwork, and I'm thankful to have finally given a decant a solid use lately (as opposed to spraying it years apart in the store, or having exposure to it through others). I'm on the verge of purchasing it right freaking now; but I know I need to wait (but that check from Trump Daddy is so tempting...). I know the mature and responsible decision would be to gauge this in a few more situations and weathers to see how it performs. I already have many heavy/weird frags, but I cannot help but desire this as well.

          Ok, so notes:
          After a few days in it, I get massive ylang ylang, rich unsweetened cocoa powder, vanilla, patchouli and some kind of wood predominantly. There's white florals, and I can't discern what they are, but I rated jasmine&gardenia as both "noticeable". There seems to be no citrus at all. I do however get a ghost note of licorice in the opening which subsides after 15 minutes. It could be the result of other delightful, delicious darknesses blending...but it registers as licorice to me. It's one of the fragrances that really almost showcases what the wearer is about; because there are so many facets to this, that it seems like it would be nearly impossible to find anyone who smells this in an identical way as oneself.

          Occasionally this *WHOOFS* up into my nose (2 sprays is as much as I dare use) in a really jarring way when I move. I'm not going to lie, there are times where it's a bit much. I wouldn't always be in the mood for this. I do love it, and if I don't purchase a full bottle, I'm sure I'll always have a decant or two from some reputable people.

          Truly excellent, truly creative, and truly masterful.

          TeachOlfactoryArt

          Tom Ford’s first and best. Only Noir de Noir pre-2015 can compete. This is an extremely rich floral spicy oriental, totally unique, with massive longevity and silage.

          I’m male, I love it, so do the women who compliment it.

          Bold, all season, all weather for me, I just adjust the trigger.

          Rare blend where as soon as one picks notes, they fold back into the composition. It changes hour by hour.

          Marycalderon27

          I think this is the best designer fragrance ever created. It is to me at least. Loved at first sniff and just grew from there. It's so unique and I really don't think many people in my area are rocking Black Orchid. I'm sure a lot do, but it's way more unique than, say, La Vie Est Belle. I adore that perfume but everyone wears it. Black Orchid is very recognizable for a couple reasons, its Black Orchid. Nothing smells quite like it. Its just unmistakably unique. Also, if you overspray this beasty babe, your sillage is choking the whole room. It really does project and it projects far. I also wouldn't love BO on a man. It's always been such an aphrodisiac mystery woman scent. I would like to smell it on a man, however. I may be wrong. Black Orchid is my signature. Year round. It's a night time fragrance for spring and summer, and a day time frag for fall and winter. Get ur nose on this sexy juice

          CagoDomo

          This is one of the rare occasions that I liked a scent more at first sniff than I did the more I wore it...
          And in my opinion, it smells a little more palatable out of the atomizer and/or from a distance...

          Black Orchid has this weird effect where it changes, or at least your nose changes how it perceives it...There's so much going on, so much craftsmanship-no 2 wearings are the same. Ok, that's a little extreme...

          But the first time I smelled it- I got this thick chocolate, honey and spices vibe. There's also almost a fermented/red wine smell to it as well. It's vaguely fruity, overwhelmingly floral, earthy, sultry and mature. It's opulent and austere but unique and addictive...

          My bad experience was as follows:
          I wore it to bed one night(and frankly over applied) and ever since then, all I can smell is the tuberose and white florals. Like a grandma in church...I had to wash my sheets to get the smell out, this stuff is beastly...

          So while I can't say I don't like Black Orchid, I would say it's definitely not for everyone. If you're considering blind buying it(especially if you're a man)based off of the reviewers saying it's a masterpiece, do NOT do it. While it is certainly a masterpiece and a hall of famer, this is not a blind buy fragrance and honestly- not a fragrance for the newcomers..

          All that being said, it's a famous fragrance for a reason. There's really not much else like it and it is an absolute nuclear bomb- which can be a good thing or a bad thing depending on the situation. Like I said, some days I like it, some days I hate it but I always respect it. The bottle is timeless and it's relatively affordable. If you're a collector, what are we even talking about? You already have it. But if you're considering it for a signature scent or a new buy, test it out first

          Sharkbait1245

          Don't get me wrong, this is a lovely scent, and I realize that this is technically unisex, but I believe that this is much more suited for a mature woman. I first smelled this on my co-worker (we worked at a 5-Star hotel) and it smelled awesome on him, but when I got some for myself, I decided that this smelled too much like what my grandmother used to wear for church. I still enjoy this fragrance, it's just not for me.

          Iaespinozad

          I have been waiting for years to have this perfume. Until I bought two 30ml bottles. I tell you about my experience.

          One of the few fragrances for which I have received compliments.

          Dark, deep, elegant, rich, opulent. All that and more is BLACK ORCHID. Earthy, dusty, chocolatey. The indispensable fruits: the citrus fruits that are hardly felt, the ripe fruits, the currants. Those magnificent flowers, the jasmine - the ylang-ylang, take center stage. Then the beloved chocolate, truffle and vanilla. The earthy and imposing Patchouli, I love everything about this fragrance.

          A decadent masterpiece, an olfactory wonder, is genderless, just admirers.

          Lervin HR

          Simply exquisite. Tom Ford are niche or designer fragrances? is arguable, but this Black Orchid in perfumery is at the highest level in terms of originality, quality and aroma; it is seductive, mysterious, exotic, magical, dark and at the same time elegant, sophisticated, classy, pure glamor. It can be unisex, but in both cases a bold, daring, dominant personality is required; Definitely a femme fatale perfume. An olfactive work of art.

          Scent: 9.6
          Originality: 10
          Versatility: 7.5 (night)
          Climate: autumn and winter
          Occasions: Gala events and romantic date
          Age: between 25 to 45
          Quality: 10
          Price: 8
          Sillage: 9
          Longevity: 9
          Design (bottle): 9
          Total rating: 9.6

          Main notes I smell: chocolate, patchouli
          Emotions / Feeling: Femme fatale

          mawreeeo

          This was a love at first sniff for me and it deepened with wear. It was actually my first full bottle purchases.

          Tom Ford's Black Orchid is like an illusive chameleon. The mystery that this juice carries is beyond words. When I first wore it I tried time and time again to pin down the individual notes, but was left in awe as it changed periodically, much like a chameleon changing colors avoiding to be seen. You start with a deep, vibrant pop of floral but almost as if each individual note is immediately made heavy and dark, as if the chameleon were to be showing its eccentric colors wanting to be seen but immediately darkening to produce the effect of luring you in. This floral pop is contrasted by a deep earthy punch of truffle, spices, chocolate and radiates an almost "tyrian purple aura". It is hypnotizing. The beauty in this is that it becomes alive as you wear it. Through the opening to the complete dry down this chameleon changes and morphs its colors and aura emitting bursts of sweetneess, florals, earthy tones and this delicate balance of dark & light, earthy & fresh. The more I have worn it the more I have learned that this fragrance has a mind of its own, and I love it for that. It changes and evolves and constantly keeps me intrigued. I have gathered tons of compliments for its uniqueness. It also lasts Forever! Two sprays of this and I can smell it for hours with great projection and sillage. It smells incredible on clothes afterwards too, an almost incensy/sweet floral.

          Definitely give this one a go, the notes almost seem to contrast but are so elegantly blended that they sing in disastrous harmony. This one is a signature scent for sure. If you are looking for something that will give you a "vibe" or a certain mysteriousness to you, check this out.

          ClashDaddy

          Tom Ford Black Orchid is one of the most complex and interesting fragrances that I have had the good fortune to own and used for a limited time. Stunning bottle design that reeks of decadent luxury, this fragrance is unisex and suitable to be worn by outgoing, confident personalities.

          The opening is magical, its scent develops literally like a flower in bloom, with flurry of chocolate, fruits and orchid (?) greeting one's nose at first blush. I detected a hint of mint and vetiver as well towards the dry down, which pleasantly surprised me. The gradual transition of notes, one replacing the other, is one of the most enjoyable fragrance experiences I have had to date.

          Alas, the dry down. And with it, my moment of olfactory delight came to a rude and sudden halt. I don't know if it was the amber, the truffle or the musk - or the combination of all three, that gave me a numbing headache and had me walking in circles as I tried to dispel the unpleasant sensation. It eventually dissipated (after 10-12 minutes) and finally I could smell the warm and rich vanilla base note.

          I tried it again several times, hoping for a different outcome. No cigar. Sadly, as much as i loved the opening scent and base, having to run the gauntlet of that migraine inducing dry down was a bridge too far - and with a heavy heart I decided to sell my precious bottle to a more worthy individual who had worn this fragrance before and absolutely loved it. However I am not giving up on this BO line, maybe i will have better luck with its sister incarnations.

          For the right person, this would be a 10/10.

          8/10 for me due to the migraine inducing dry down.

          Lulushka

          Black Orchid and I have had a complex push-pull relationship since the first time I smelled it. My initial reaction was basically, “Gross! Next, please,” and I put away the decant I got from a subscription service and moved on. I returned to it periodically, mostly because smelling it it was such a kitchen-sink kind of experience, and it was fun to try and pick out its individual notes, but I could never imagine myself wearing it.

          There was also the fact that, being kind of a snob, lots of people were wearing it, and despite its complexity and weirdness, its omnipresence made me categorize it as too basic to be worth spending the time I thought it would take to understand it. Eventually I passed on my decant to my sister-in-law, who (bless her heart) is a total label ho (and I use that term with affection and irony, so I hope nobody is offended), and Tom Ford’s name in itself made Black Orchid appealing to her.

          So, years roll by, and I smell/wear/buy lots of expensive, exclusive, and difficult perfumes. I get over some of my hangups about designer vs niche, and I start to get palate fatigue. Eventually, I bought another decant, and this time something clicked. I wasn’t really interested in exploring different notes or particular styles anymore—it was more about finding perfumes that felt satisfying, comfortable, and complete, and Black Orchid did that for me. I don’t think my tastes changed, but my attitude certainly did, and that removed whatever blocks I had put in my own way. I’m glad I got over whatever it was, because I fell for Black Orchid to the point where I consider it a signature—one of many, but certainly a desert island perfume, and one of the first bottles I would buy if my house burned down and I had to start my collection again from scratch.

          The key that unlocked Black Orchid for me wasn’t the chocolate, or the truffle, or the vanilla, the patchouli, or the alleged orchid (a fantasy note that I’ve always found to be kind of gimmicky): they’re all in there, singing in a fascinating kind of disharmony that reminds me of Bartók concertos and Jackson Pollack paintings—things that shouldn’t be beautiful, but pull you into their dark space until you’re so disoriented that you realize you love experiencing them, even though they scare you. But what hooked me was its vetiver. I love vetiver pretty much wherever I can find it, from Guerlain’s classic powdery treatment to Goutal’s gnarly salty version, to Bois 1920’s fantastic Vetiver Ambrato, to the warm chestnut/vetiver combo in Hermès’ exquisite Vetiver Tonka, to Chanel’s elegant Sycamore, to TDC’s delicate Sel de Vetiver. Out of all of these, Black Orchid’s vetiver is closest in spirit to Hermès’, with its juxtaposition of something edible with something crisp and grassy—it’s not delicious or even edible, and in fact it smells kind of poisonous, but I don’t really feel comfortable in perfume that smells like food.

          Here, the treatment of vetiver is even further removed from nature, polished to a finish that feels glossy in texture. It’s bizarre and counterintuitive, but it works a treat. The chocolate note is woody (if you’ve ever smelled cacao beans roasting, or even some varieties of coffee, you’ll know what I mean)—but that’s polished up, too, so it’s like experiencing all these smells you find in plants and food under a surface of high-quality Perspex or even glass. The tangle of florals are integrated in a similarly shiny treatment of sandalwood, and the overall effect is like looking at a very dark, almost black surface with a subtle but psychedelic iridescent surface, buffed to a shine that still feels like layers of black paint so deep that you could dip your fingers into it. I know i’m using a lot of visual similes and metaphors here, but this stuff is really hard for me to describe any other way, because it doesn’t smell like anything except itself.

          And that’s why I finally fell in love with Black Orchid. It’s both fresh and dank, clean and dirty, and somehow strange and uncannily familiar at the same time. I’ve been wearing it for years now, and I haven’t even come close to understanding it. There are very few perfumes out there that don’t bear any relationship with other, older (or newer) perfumes, but I haven’t come across anything like Black Orchid (yet, anyway—it looks like I need to chase down VC&A’s Oud, since lots of people say it’s similar, which has to be worth checking out). It has a sense of completeness that I only find in the great classics—the Guerlain and Chanel masterpieces that seem to exist in their own universes, worlds apart from the very crowded pack of offerings out there that are all striving to carve out their own little places. It’s colossal, absolutely inimitable, and the dictionary definition of jolie-laid.

          Every time I wear Black Orchid, I feel unsettled and still completely comfortable. I’ve come to love several of the Tom Ford non-prive offerings—White Patchouli’s ambrette-laced update of the classic rose chypres, and Sahara Noir’s O