The neon green bottle lends cognitive dissonance to this rather smoldering tobacco and tea scent. Perhaps a muted hunter green would have been more appropriate. The design is really cool, though.
This one is shockingly enjoyable despite the price, and the dry-down somehow reminds me of that sweet, agrestic, coumarinic aroma of walking through a meadow on a Spring day here in the Northeast. For that alone, I am hooked.
This one took me by surprise. A blind buy, I was purchasing a few designer fragrances from an online discounter and I decided to add a cheapie to the cart just to round the price up and get something extra for fun. Aura for Men caught my eye due to the distinctive bottle so I took it. I didn't have high expectations for it, but it turned out to be a gem. Aura for Men is a very nice aromatic green fragrance. It has a woody and musk opening and as it begins to dry down some nice spice notes come to the fore and I detect the green tea and ginger here. As Aura for men dries on the skin it settles with warm, musky, tonka notes with tobacco and hint of spice in the background. A nice warm, confident, masculine scent, not too bold, not particularly unique or amazing but very much a decent, peasant scent. Aura for Men is great value, it lasts about 4 or 5 hours and projects moderately well and it is around $12 or less for a 40mL bottle. A good fragrance for a young man, as a school scent during autumn, Aura for Men could be a reasonable budget signature scent for everyday use, office, school, college etc. Cheap and synthetic yes, but a nice scent and good performance to price ratio, 3.5/5.
Generic-ish, green, spicy fragrance for men. Has bits of Gucci Envy, but not a carbon copy. Overall, pretty good, and for the price, it's hard to top. Plus the bottle looks cool.
I've had a love hate relationship with this, over the past 10 years, buying and selling it, giving it away. I just bought it again, and really miss it. This time I think I'll hold on to it, and just won't wear it unless I'm really in the mood. It's just one of the scents that can rub me the wrong way sometimes.
Jacomo Aura opens with an intense blast of lemony lavender riding a wave of icy-spicy synthetic ginger, with a green juniper undertone. A bit of floral violet(?) emerges a few minutes in. The lemon and ginger notes persist into a floral, green-tea heart, which rests on a semisweet, creamy, soapy base. Here the tension between the sharp green floral note and the creamy, soapy undertone is well balanced. After about two hours, the heart transitions into a semisweet vanillic amber base, underpinned by cedar and sandalwood, with notes of nutmeg and cinnamon and traces of the piercing green ginger from the opening and hints of the tea. Projection is excellent from the topnotes to the heart in the first 12 hours, but lower, fading to skin scent, in the drydown. Longevity is good at 5+ hours.
I'm surprised more reviews don't mention the floral notes, which I'm apparently quite sensitive to, but aren't mentioned in the official notes. I can only guess the "sage" listed in the notes means clary sage and this has been created with linalool, also present in lavender. The florals don't make this fragrance feminine–the green notes and piercing ginger keep it unisex. But since I don't like florals generally, I would like this scent better without them. Although I won't be wearing it, this is a well composed fragrance and excellent value, so it still gets a thumbs up. Yes, the bottle is cool too, and the neon green communicates something of the piercing intensity of the ginger-green opening, even if it fades to something much more conventional and well behaved.
Aura is an intriguing, obscure scent that was part of a brief resurgence of "green" fragrances which tried to take what was conveyed by the aromatic chypres and fougères of decades past and "modernize" them with lighter, brighter, and sometimes sweeter accords. Gucci Envy for Men (1998) is perhaps the earliest and most famous of this set, achieving mythic status because Tom Ford was involved with Gucci/YSL at the time and it (like many Gucci/YSL fragrances from the period) became discontinued when he left as creative director to start his own house, despite whatever their sales were prior. However, almost one after another came Calvin Klein's Contradiction for Men (1999), then Aura for Men by Jacomo (2000), both of which follow similar lines as Gucci Envy but are overlooked probably because everyone is too busy hunting unicorns. Contradiction was definitely the sweeter sibling, while Envy the spiciest with more ginger, and Aura tries to compromise these two dynamics by resting somewhere in the middle. All of them had rather bizarre packaging with both Envy and Contradiction featuring oversized caps, while Aura went a step further with a cap-less suspended bottle within a plexiglass frame; real avant-garde stuff here. Jacomo has always marched to the beat of it's own drum both with novel packaging and contributing something out of left field to a popular or emerging style, which is what they did with 1980's blackened moss classic Jacomo de Jacomo, and is no less the case here.
Aura makes it's claim to this brief resurgence in green men's fragrance by revisiting the ginger/tobacco/woods power trio of the lauded and lusted for Gucci Envy for Men but mixes in some of the sweet artifice of Contradiction for Men's creative direction, with a bit of that "fake pine" I mention in my sentimental starry-eyed review for it. Maybe that's why Aura continues to play in the shadow of the colossus that is Gucci Envy: it's similar enough to invoke yearning for the greater scent, but too different and obscure to be much liked on it's own by those who owned the Gucci prior to discovering it back in the day. Jacomo fans know to expect the bizzare however, so audience reception is relative. Aura opens with "green lemon", which is the label's name for it's generic citron note, coupled with sage, sweet juniper, salvia (which high school kids used to try smoking back then), and ginger. The "faux pine" comes in the middle rather than the opening like with Contradiction for men, but the tobacco leaf keeps it from dominating and an interesting matcha green tea note hangs around with coumarin before settling on the resinous base. Sandalwood and cedar fight for space here like they once did in a few standout 70's and 80's aromatics, before musk, amber, and patchouli sweeten and return the scent to it's green beginning on skin. It's another "Pacific Northwest Winner" for those in the Oregon/Washington area, since it's design perfectly matches the cool, verdant surrounds. People perhaps worried about the tobacco need fear not, as it is mixed down very well and not prominent like it is with scents like Versace The Dreamer (1996). Suggested use is spring/fall daytime casual or office and performance is average all around.
Aura is a good attempt at a modern-for-Y2K aromatic, but it's clear compromise between bold herbs and spices with 90's chemical lightness makes it feel too niche for the current mainstream millenial but too synthetic for the niche guys and too bland for the vintage hounds wearing "real" aromatic fougères from the days of yore, whereas Gucci Guilty's unrepentant exercise of traditional grace with modern style in the face of the ozonic glut helped it earn it's stripes even before it became legendary discontinued unobtanium via overzealous collectors/scalpers. I'd say for the person that misses Guilty, this is a reasonable substitute as it is cut from similar cloth and still produced, but should be checked out by anyone into this style, as it's a neat little aromatic B-side to the 90's freshness movement even all on it's own. Aura is still a fun green masculine that sits in it's own corner of the world with a smile on it's face, irrespective of any fashion sense and has a similar (albeit smaller) cult following as the debut Jacomo masculine because again, being left-of-center is the designer's hallmark. Lest I forget, the glass-suspended-by-plastic art project that is this thing's bottle is almost worth the paltry asking price alone: everyone who sees it is going to ask you about it. Don't expect miracles here, but for the price of a gourmet cheeseburger, you can have a leafy, slightly sweet, slightly earthy bottle of backwoods sunshine nobody has heard of that will be right at home during spring weather. There's just a lot to say about this wacky wonder juice, but not all of it praise. Thumbs up.