Leather fragrance notes

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Latest Reviews of Leather

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Stardate 20180930:

The style of leather here is similar to Etro Gomma / K10 / Burberry For Men 1st. I dislike that style of leather.
Avon , fortunately, was stingy with it and so I like this one better than the big three.
The leather is supported by some citrus and moss. The development is not a whole lot but I can wear this leather and not be unhappy. Mild Thumbs up
1st October 2018
There's very few fragrances I can't convince myself to like, but I can't abide the wintergreen in this. There are other notes in this, such as strong oak moss, but the wintergreen (that I would have guessed was spearmint) seems too jarring. It calls too much attention to itself for it not being a good fit with the other notes.
17th April 2018

My bottle is The "Gentleman's Choice" Avon Leather in a rather sedate, (by Avon Kitschy Standards) Square block, Islamic decorated,Faux crystal, Whiskey decanter bottle. Gentle Manly Masculine.
I would say the ZC has pretty much hit all the corners of this box.
This opens with a big, round, blast of Moss and Citrus. At first with a base not unlike that of the Styrax, Birch bloom in Vintage Bel Ami. Next is a wonderful blast of Lipstick, Vaguely Anisic, close to Cuir Cannage and Knize Ten. It collapses pretty quickly to a quiet, pleasantly Gentleman's. Moss and Citrus Savon.
8th March 2018
Avon Leather was the first legitimate fragrance follow-up to Tribute for men (1963), which kicked off the "new" Avon for Men division (replacing what was formerly a single line) a few years back. Avon had since merged their former 1950's line and re-dubbed it "Avon Original", while the youth got the "Blue Blazer" line (1964) and finally an "Island Lime" (1965) after shave was made before finally making another full fragrance line with Avon Leather in 1966. It certainly is one of the darkest, murkiest, and most burly fragrances I have ever smelled from the maker, but that's not to say this is really musky, sharp, or any kind of "strong" as we know it in modern day men's cologne, just very masculine to a fault. It has a soft powdery quality not really found in a lot of other leather fragrances outside maybe English Leather (1949), which I feel this tries to compete with, Since Aramis by Estée Lauder (1965) was a much sharper creature. Not only would something like this be completely unmarketable now, but it must have been a total shock back in the 60's when it hit the Avon catalog because this was the age when barbershop fougères and aromatic citrus chypres stormed into the men's limelight. Not even in the 70's, with all it's heavy aromatic fougères, orientals, and musks would this make a home for itself, because it was still murkier, darker, yet ultimately softer than any of those woodsy moss beasts. Men either wanted gentlemanly restraint or olfactory sexual prowess back then, not something that whipped it's gut out over a giant belt buckle and waited for the waitress to take notice. Granted, this might not be the most masculine fragrance ever created in terms of sheer sexual energy, but it is by far one of the most intently manly scents Avon dared, which is what makes it so amusing. Did I forget to mention it came in a boot-shaped bottle?

The 1960's for Avon was the first time they went all-in with multiple men's lines of fragrances, more than any other US company at that time, and actually went out of the way to mention there was "Avon for Men!" by exclaiming it in every ad and on the boxes of these things (because I guess folks then were used to Avon just being primarily for ladies). Of all the scents from this period I've smelled or purchased, this one is certainly the most love-it-or-hate-it. It's very hard to describe because nothing else really comes close to it You can try picking out notes, or comparing it to pieces of other fragrances but will always fall short. To try and summarize, there is a definite base of something mossy, leathery and tobacco-like in the bottom of this, and the odd wintergreen note in there as well does kinda bend this towards a Pepto Bismol smell but it isn't as bad as that description makes it sound. Riding on top all this darkness is a layer of bergamot, petitgrain and anise. I detect aldehydes here too but not in a huge degree, since this isn't very bright. I usually don't see moss as anything but a base note in a fragrance that isn't centered around it, so to have it project right out front then give way as it fades in favor of the namesake leather, then have that fade in favor of other base notes is very peculiar indeed; it's almost like this scent is an inversion of what a leather chyre usually is, but still manages to be one, if only categorically. When you get right down to it, this goes on leathery, but dries down soft and creamy with leather hints, which is backwards from most leather scents which save the leather note for last and usually come charging in with citrus or honey. If Avon was going for something unequaled, they sure got it, but at the cost of elegance.

Where to wear this for the contemporary fragrance fan... that's even harder to say. It's not romantic AT ALL, and it's so dark and brutish until the soft whimper of an end that it would almost be inappropriate for work or casual use too. Maybe solo evenings at home where nobody has to smell you (and thus judge you), or perhaps in a sawdust-floor bar, pool haul, or country line dancing club where the aesthetic would be appreciated. It doesn't have the "Old American West" vibe in it's construction like Wild Country, but it does scream "Texas" or "Oklahoma" with all the richness and masculinity of it's components. It's also of interesting note that this was among one of Avon's first masculines available in a 3oz spray, but it too was shaped like a boot. I almost want to say there is something of a licorice or anise note in here too, or just the combination of smells that create it, but I could be wrong. At the end of the day, it's such a fragrance both out of time and place then and now, that's it's something you just have to wear out of sheer interest in turning heads, reason be damned. Avon created a niche scent totally by accident here, of that I'm convinced. It's quite quality and will last most of the day even if it doesn't project very heavily, but if you can find a more surly scent in a more overbearingly male package (excluding later gift decanters), my boot's... er... hat's off to you! Thumbs up just for strangeness. Pro Tip: these bottles turn up empty a lot on the aftermarket, and full bottles of the later vehicular decanters also show up, so you can always pour from one into the other if you can't find a full bottle in it's original presentation.
21st September 2017
Leather is more interesting than I would have guessed. Mine is contained in a glass book ("I have many leather-bound books" - Ron Burgundy). When it opens it seems almost as if the top notes aren't getting along with the rest of the fragrance. Immediately I get a lemon and bergamot with some petitgrain and bittersweet moss, and this aspect reminds me of many older scents in the same vein of English Leather, Dunhill, or Chanel Pour Monsieur. Lying underneath that phase and waiting to emerge is a soft, tobacco-leathery note which seems to be paired with, of all things, wintergreen, as well as a light powdery-sweet element separate from the moss (which is now providing a neat sour counterweight) that could be orris or nutmeg. The citrusy parts don't stick for long and most of Leather's run on my skin is the soft-spoken almost-leather, moss, nutmeg/orris, and that odd mint(?). Despite the name this is the only fragrance I can think of that smells similar to Bogner's masterpiece Deep Forest (after the opening wears away) and it is quite pleasant.

The above development is the smell on my skin. If applied to paper there is a much longer run with the top notes trying awkwardly to mingle with the rest, and the effect is like lemon peel having an argument with oakmoss. It's sour and weird and a little funny.
1st February 2014