YSL pour Homme Haute Concentration fragrance notes

  • Head

    • petitgrain, lemon, carnation
  • Heart

    • rosemary, patchouli, tonka bean, herbs
  • Base

    • woods, nutmeg

Where to buy

Latest Reviews of YSL pour Homme Haute Concentration

A classy, clean, herbal and strong fougère for men by YSL which amps up and vastly improves upon the 1970s original in every conceivable way. Lemon and oakmoss are what drive this scent, which can last for well over 14 hours in the right weather (colder) on skin and even longer on clothing.

Its strength is never to its detriment however, as there is nothing, to my ever-developing nose at least, remotely offensive about YSL Pour Homme Concentration. The animalics, cumin and spice are far less prominent than in YSL Pour Homme, especially its first iteration, so in that sense the Concentration has been cleaned up, with longer lasting citrus notes and an exquisitely prolonged herbaceous drydown in the mix.

Very hard to find at a reasonable price nowadays but it will always be a classic for me and whilst I love the original in the bottles with the red cap, it pales in the shadow of the Concentration. Absolutely magnificent and certainly recommended.
9th March 2022
I bought a full bottle of this because I wanted to try it and sell decants. It was expensive. I might have sold one or two decants. No way will I part with any more.

I love this stuff.

The longevity is epic. I can spray this on a shirt and smell it days later. It outlasts anything I've tried, so far.

When you first spray it you get that lemon top note. It dries down to a wonderful fougere and stays there. The only fougere I have tried that I like better is Rive Gauche Pour Homme. But this one is second. Tuscany Per Uomo Forte is probably third.

26th June 2020

A strong, lemony fragrance that is a definite supercharge of the YSL pour Homme original, with a richer perception of spices cradled within.

I owned an older bottle of this about a decade ago, impressed with the enduring performance of the verbena-like character that defines YSLpHHC; it looks just like the photo above, with a non-removable cap.

I would classify this as a fruity chypre with fewer of the requisite notes compared with YSL pour Homme original (typically, chypres have bergamot, labdanum, oak moss, and patchouli to give it the "cypress" sharpness): Original has bergamot, oak moss and patchouli, whereas HHC has patchouli and amalfi lemon as a replacement and no oak moss (nor labdanum).

HHC is a bright, tangy-spicy experience that smells a bit out of date, but not completely so. YSL also made the Jazz / Live Jazz colognes which are close cousins to these two.

If you want a more straight-forward lemony strong sensation with a bit of spice, YSLpHHC is the one to get. If you'd like a more restrained citrus presence, go with YSL pour Homme. If you prefer lemony with spice, Jazz Prestige is for you. And if you want mostly spice, go with Jazz.

24th August 2018
The 1980's was a time for loud, brash, virile, and hyper-masculine scents that one-upped all the macho man juices from the 70's by further marginalizing the "scent of a man" in their composition, but these "powerhouses" weren't all that there was in the decade, as a lot of guys still appreciated a dapper and more confident approach without such boisterous signalling. For this reason, a lot of really nice but conservative scents flew well under the radar during this time, including a series of quietly-issued "Concentrée" and "Haute Concentration" variants of older masculine standbys for the guy who loved his classics but needed them just a bit louder to be heard over the cacophony of oakmoss, civet, castoreum, benzoin, and styrax that was flying about at the time. Most of the major men's chypres of decades past saw uppage in concentration in the 80's, and most were exactly as labelled: a parfum-strength variant that couldn't comfortably be labelled as such because of the conventions of the day. Some were arguably different scents, re-tooled and rebalanced to merely resemble what they were boosting, rather than just being a note-for-note increase, and such was the case here. Nowadays we just see parfum variants of everything, but this wasn't standard practice then. YSL PH HC isn't a totally reinterpretation like Chanel Pour Monsieur Eau de Toilette Concentrée (1989), but in this case, nothing is being "fixed", just strengthened. If you like mid-century men's chypres but wish they lasted longer, this might have been a good option if it hadn't been discontinued, but asking prices for surviving stock sadly make it more of a serious collector's piece now.

I tried to find out who created Yves Saint Laurent Pour Homme Haute Concentration, but it is undocumented. Perhaps Raymond Challian returned and reworked his own formula for the original, because they seem awfully close, but alas I cannot verify. The important thing is that Haute Concentration smells 95% like the original Yves Saint Laurent Pour Homme except in parts of the middle and the very end. It's the slightest of enhancements, like the popular "restomods" found in care culture that increase performance while preserving the stock cosmetics. Those who haven't sniffed the original Yves Saint Laurent Pour Homme are actually encouraged to get a taste of that first, as it's lemony opening, gentle herbs heart, dry woods, and moss base that uses your own sweat as the animalic X factor is quite the genius stroke for it's genre. Haute Concentration removes the guesswork that relying on the wearer's skin chemistry brings and replaces it with a louder top, beefier middle, and resonating base that ensures more consistent performance at the cost of artistry. Petitgrain joins the "lemon pledge" salvo of the original YSL PH, while coumarin and patchouli join the original herbal ensemble as well. The oakmoss and sandalwood base is further augmented by nutmeg. The base is ironically the least tampered-with part of the scent, but has affected the greatest change in the wear as this dries down rather nutty with more noticeable labdanum instead of with the dry woods and buttery moss one might otherwise expect.

Wearing Yves Saint Laurent Pour Homme Haute Concentration is like wearing a version of the original YSL PH that's been regularly hitting the gym: it's newfound strength can power through most situations where before it could not, but the added swagger has altered it's personality, and it's no longer as sauve and approachable like the consummate gentleman it once was. Big biceps and a tighter-fitting shirt might do it for some, but you can never truly relax around somebody presenting themselves that way, which is why I still prefer the original. Yves Saint Laurent Pour Homme Haute Concentration doesn't let you control the "X factor" by turning up the heat; it's all or nothing, take it or leave it. The petitgrain in the top does inch it closer to the original's rival of Chanel Pour Monsieur Eau de Toilette (1955), and Versace would travel similar but more oriental vibes with l'Homme (1984) the following year, creating a spinoff genre that I won't detail here. Additionally, Douro Eau de Portugal/Lords by Penhaligon's (1985) shares a similar labdanum focus in the drydown. For those who own the original, this is extra-curricular, and for those who own neither, the original is the better entry point. I quite like Yves Saint Laurent Pour Homme Haute Concentration, but I'm also the kind of guy that enjoys speed metal, so subtlety is sometimes lost on me.
12th April 2018
This is a review of the first reformulated version in the black cap and glass bottle before it was discontinued. Same as the photo above.

At the start you can smell soft sour lemon mixed in with rosemary. Soon petagrain can be smelled within this fresh herbal mix. The scent is very unique and smells so natural. It's like the creators left the lab and decided to create the scent at the local botanical gardens. lol

The lemon soon disappears and is overtaken with the rosemary and woods with soft spices. It is very nice, fresh green and as time goes by it becomes drier and musky in the basenotes. Now here is where things get interesting although it's not listed in the note breakdown, I can smell castoreum. This is a animalic note that smells leathery, smoky and musky. Mixed in with rosemary and light woods and spices makes the scent very sensual at this final stage.

The scent projects well for the first few hours and then stays closer to you. Longevity is four or so hours but it does linger on your shirt/clothes a lot longer and can still be smelled.

All in all a very lovely natural smelling fragrance with top notch ingredients.

One thing to note is there are two versions, the original from 1983 in a black bottle which is very rare. It also smells a bit different as well as longevity and projection been a lot stronger. And then there is this one with the black cap and clear bottle which I believe was a post 2005 reformulation. So this explains the disparity in the reviews.
9th March 2018
I am tired, very tired of the "******" (self-censored) fragrances that all smell alike or those fragrance houses that fail to have a strong identity. I neither buy or support those houses. Either make a man's scent or a woman's scent: life is too short for sameness.

On initial spray, I smell a mature lemon note and then the magical dry-down of refined woods.

I wish this scent was easier to obtain from reputable sources. A very fine fragrance of the masculine identity.
25th December 2017
An oakmoss-rich, packed full of light herbs, citrus and luscious woods, YSL Pour Homme Haute Concentration is perhaps one of the longest-lasting designer scents of all time.

It's been well over 30 years since this gem came out and in my opinion was way ahead of its time. Chanel had Pour Monsieur, Dior had Eau Sauvage, Givenchy had Monsieur de Givenchy, so the bar was set quite high for YSL to compete with. But they came out with this!

Of all the 'homme' or 'monsieur' fragrances this one cuts above them all in my opinion. Fresh yet slightly dirty, smooth yet herbaceous, strong but not overpowering and very long lasting, Haute Concentration oozes quality and class.

I have the first edition bottle, with the large YSL letters on the bottle and the box. But despair not! Vintage is not the only way to go these days. The regular YSL Pour Homme in the La Collection square bottles is remarkably similar to the vintage and now long-discontinued Haute Concentration.

I'll never be without a bottle of this as it is just too classy to skip over. A thumbs up and an easy 5/5 for me.
19th October 2017
Designed as a more intense version of its older brother, my unremarkable nose finds nothing noticeably stronger with HC or dramatically different between the two. HC carries more of a spicy, soapy carnation note (remindful a bit of Versace L'Homme) and its masculine edge is not quite as sharp... but the closest thing to HC is YSL pH and vice versa.

Sure it's a good lemon/herbal masculine on its own merits, but every time I wear it I have wandering thoughts as to why I just didn't spray YSL pH instead.

My bottle of YSL pH HC is one of the non-detachable black cap versions, post-2005.
18th September 2016
this comes from an era when you did not need niche perfumery to enjoy a blast of pure happiness!
13th November 2012
Dare I say - brilliant! YSL Pour Homme's original bottling came out in 1971 while this entirely different composition arrived in 1983, a full dozen years later. For fans of the genre, familiarity with the classic bottles is essential to understand this composition. It shrinks the note pyramid of YSL Pour Homme, and is not stronger (both are Eau de Toilette) - but it shows us how aromatic compounds can be deeper and more focused. A huge blast of lemon opens this scent but is immediately blended with petit grain. The depth of citrus here is phenomenal - it will last the entire wearing...up to 10+ hours and stay on clothing for several days! The carnation in the top, while just a light nuance in the traditional YSL Pour Homme bottling is much more prevalent here. A key note that brings this together, which I believe is missing from the scent pyramid above is verbena (or lemon verbena) that blends brilliantly with the rosemary and sage to give us the herbal heart. I get a great earthiness in this from the deep patchouli - possibly the best use of patchouli in a citrus fragrance! The wood here is important, but blended well - cedar, sandalwood and a nice, slightly-dirty/bitter vetiver accord that is rounded out by the nutmeg offering a dustiness into the base notes. I love this texture...the depth is stunning!

Some people say this is a very strong scent. While it may awaken your olfactory senses - it is aromatically rich and a different scent than its older brother. This is, to me, one of the best Haute Concentrations of an Aromatic Citrus ever produced - because it does what many attempt to do...it decreases the number of notes from the original and, yet, makes the composition deeper and richer (than 'standard' formulation).

A modern classic - to be worn with swagger, confidence and honesty. This is a scent with confidence in just a light to moderate application. While I find myself torn on which is better, I reach for the YSL Pour Homme standard bottling to feel cleaner and more gentlemanly (and for a single key note in Vintage, Oakmoss) - this is one I wear when I want to be noticed. I adore both.

This is pure excellence in a bottle! YSL Pour Homme Haute Concentration is a scent that stays within the lines of the genre, yet goes at least one (or two) levels richer in olfactory depth than almost any other scent out there in the realm of Aromatic/"Dirty" Citruses - awesome. Profound and to be respected!

Only for those who adore what an aromatic citrus can offer when it turned up to FULL volume. This is much like feedback on a tube amplifier - noisy to some; beautiful (and harmonically-perfect) to others. Cheers! Near perfection...
27th June 2012
I tried to like this, I really did...
A blind buy (not my wisest move) given all the love here for it. And there is an element to the frag that I like; the classic harsh/dry lemon smell is nice, kinda reminds me of an element of Monsieur de Givenchy.
However that one element is wrapped up in a smell which I can only describe as being like sweat mixed with urine.
Not pleasant.
Perhaps it's my skin, perhaps it's my nose, but it just does nothing for me and will now sadly languish at the back of my wardrobe.
18th February 2012
This is a very dry straightforward chypre with a fresh resinous lemon top, similar to Homme de Grés, cousins with the Monsieurs of Givenchy and Chanel. How much different modern masculine perfumes would be had these tasteful, natural-smelling, refined French masterpieces become the model for men's scents instead of Cool Water? If Axe body sprays and every second shower gel smelled like this the world would be a better place indeed. Perfect for day or evening and every level of formality, these are my go-to fragrances when I want to smell great but not draw attention to myself. I urge other men to do the same. True tastefulness is in scarce supply these days. Bring on the Monsieurs!
19th January 2012