Homme de Grès fragrance notes

  • Head

    • citrus, basil
  • Heart

    • labdanum, resins, jasmine, lavender
  • Base

    • leather, oakmoss, dry woods

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Latest Reviews of Homme de Grès

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On first spray I get a gorgeous melange of astringent citrus, green notes, and neroli. The strong bergamot note is restrained by the greens creating a balance that I greatly enjoy. The dry-down is still citrusy and herbaceous, but also sandalwoody and mossy.

The opening reminds me of a more herbal Capucci PH. The dry-down is like a more citrusy Loewe PH. This is halfway between a citrus aromatic and a chypre. It would have been considered fresh and contemporary in the late 1960s, but was completely out of place when Grès launched it in the mid-90s. Hats off to Grès for daring to release this when men had already been wearing Cool Water and Eternity for years.

Projection is moderate but longevity is good.

Masculinity Level: Pacino's coked-up detective in Heat. Though we never actually see him take drugs.
13th March 2023
An indifferent masculine of cheap citrus and labdanum,
which - if it says anything at all - speaks of low expectations.
5th August 2022

This fragrance reflects the excellence of Grès house. Homme de Grès is a bitter, herbal, citrusy, mediterranean-styled chypre/fougère. It released this in 1996, and it smells like something from the 1960's, where citrus and citrus with an aromatic point were apparently simple, fresh, discreet, but maintained at all times a great charm. Iy plays in the same league of Capucci Pour Homme with some difference. Both are fresh citrusy, with a lemon blast in the opening and some spices notes after a while, so manly in the final result. But Capucci Pour Homme has smoky/leathery notes that makes it more depth and serious compared to Homme de Grès.

Bright, almost astringent lemon in the opening with freah cut, verdant petitgrain and lemon varbena, paired with herbal basil and rosemary reminding you that this fragrance was born in France. All this aroma holds up quite and lasts until dried..The base is great-very traditional. Woods, moss, amber, and musk. Totally the focus is on the fresh herbs and aromatics, not the base (barbershop, lavender, oakmoss, etc). The strong basil, petitgrain and lemon notes give this a bittet smell. The bitterness tones down after an hour or two, leaving you with a more muted but warm herbal smell. It is not a modern frag. But it is that kind of fragrance easily recognizing by any real man-the scent of the cleanness, the aroma of a vibrant and also peaceful&self-confident virility.
3rd June 2022
Here's another stunning masterpiece that has been sadly discontinued. The citrus is bright, petitgrain verdant and shining, neroli is natural, jasmine nuanced.

While moderately better, I find that it is the olfactory equivalent of the refreshing bitters that are imbibed in the Mediterranean, a treat for the sense, a palate cleanser in a world of excessive fatty sweetness.

Reviewer JFrater (on Fragrantica) makes some great observations at some of the sophisticated elements included in its composition, including pyralone in the sultry base, an aromatic tobacco/leather aromachem, and the inclusion of some animalic tones that become more apparent as it continues to dry down. Lest we mention the generous dose of oakmoss which harmonizes it all ingeniously.

What a knockout. 10/10.
5th March 2022
Homme de Grès (1996) is a simple but satisfying citrus chypre in a style that became popular with men in place of the barbershop fougère (or "fern") sometime in the mid 20th century, up until the fougère became popular again thanks to the success of scents like Brut by Fabergé (1964), Speidel British Sterling (1965), and Avon Wild Country (1967). Some of you may be saying "but the date for Homme de Grès is 1996", and then wondering if implications of that means this scent was out-of-step with the times, and you would be correct in so doing. Homme de Grès is an odd one for sure, a straight-up-and-down citrus chypre (or "of Cyprus") made in a style not common since Yves Saint Laurent created their original Yves Saint Laurent pour Homme (1971) as a bookend of sorts, but it wasn't the only citrus chypre released after the halcyon days had gone, as Italian houses like Armani or Gianfranco Ferré also had masculine citrus chypres into the 80's. What makes Homme de Grès stranger than them is the fact you could still get away with a fairly straightforward chypre in the 80's thanks to the "wild west" nature of the market at the time; but by the mid-90's we were already seeing abstract freshness and a desire for synthetic minimalism take hold, so more aesthetically "natural" styles like this were too stodgy and mature. Still, I can see the logic behind reviving the citrus chypre as a simple yet elegant solution to the public demand for fresher fragrances, since the very nature of a basic chypre with its bright bergamot, crisp oakmoss, and warm labdabum seems almost a perfect fit without the need for fancy molecules or blue dyes. I'm probably giving Grès too much credit though, since the brand was far in decline by the 90's.

The opening of Homme de Grès is straight out of the Capucci pour Homme (1967) and Revlon Charlie (1973) playbook; masculine and feminine market unofficial siblings that present much the same idea with a bit of tasteful modulation for their target markets, introducing themselves with a sharp bergamot oil opening, offer something a bit like a dried fruit (juicier in the Revlon), and propelled by green notes. Galbanum is the name of the particular green player in them and so the same proves true here, but basil also joins the opening, adding a deeper bitter quality that travels through to the heart. Labdanum joins a dry indolic jasmine and a lactonic peach note left over from the opening with a bit of benzoin, before lavender seeps in and gives Homme de Grès another unique twist. The lavender makes it straddle chypre and fougère lines a little, but the former wins out as notes of oakmoss, sandalwood, costus, and a bit of isobutyl quinoline that helps add a leathery touch like in Capucci pour homme. Thanks to the huge dose of bitter greens and labdanum, Homme de Grès also crosses paths with the early 80's Yves Saint Laurent pour Homme Haute Concentration (1983) flanker. All told, you get a simple and totally unsweetened academic cypress accord, like the name "chypre" suggests for those unfamiliar with perfume genres, marrying bright herbal citrus with woods and mosses to make a clean but serious scent profile that chooses an obvious masculinity over the usual understatements of the 90's decade. Wear time is good at over 7 hours and pure unfettered chypre exercises feel very summery to me, but wear Homme de Grès anytime you have a hankering for it except in maybe a club or romantic setting.

Homme de Grès was absolutely crushed as expected by stuff like Acqua di Giò pour Homme by Gorgio Armani (1996) and Curve for Men by Liz Claiborne (1996), both scents that foreshadowed the future of the masculine perfume market, and likely the last thing anyone wanted in 1996; it shows by just how much Homme de Grès stayed in the market long after the house pulled the plug on the stuff, only recently being something you'd have to go in the aftermarket and pay a pretty penny to get. Grès perfumer Gérard Anthony also created the legendary Azzaro pour Homme (1978), alongside a few other favorites among vintage fans, so the way this turned out comes to no real surprise knowing who made it. Grès perhaps felt like they owed Anthony some business, as they had very shamelessly aped his work in Azzaro pour Homme with their own Grès Monsieur (1982) a decade before. In short, Homme de Grès is a fragrance that represents the furthest-most extreme of the brand's predilection for conservative masculine scents, as Cabaret de Grès Homme (2004) would be at least partially forward-thinking thanks to perfumer Pierre Bourdon. Most Grès masculine perfumes seem exactly of their time or maybe just a tad behind it anyway, since men's fragrance was never a big draw for the brand; and this being one of the last truly oakmoss-focused masculines in this style before regulation started closing that particular door is nothing if not par for the course with Grès. The fact Homme de Grès is from 1996 and not 1966 or 1946 makes it all the more delightful to me, but I'm weird. Overall a good textbook aromatic citrus, and one that used to be relatively available and cheap, but you know how that goes. Thumbs up.
10th May 2020
Wondering, is Homme de Grès a better fresh leather variant of Eau Sauvage than the actual flanker Eau Sauvage Fraîcheur Cuir itself?

28th May 2019
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