Revisiting Dior Homme 2020 & Contemplating this Decade’s Trends

NettyYeti

Basenotes Junkie
Jan 28, 2016
Like many, I was underwhelmed when I first tried Dior’s relaunched Homme in 2020. I touch base with it every now and then, and though it still doesn’t “wow” me, I appreciate it a lot more. I’m interested in hearing everyone’s thoughts on Dior Homme 2020, the influence it has had on mainstream masculine perfumery so far, and the potential it has to influence trends in the future.

A few (hopefully brief) thoughts of my own:

The launch of Dior Homme 2020 feels somewhat like a pivot point in masculine perfumery for a number of reasons. First, because it reworked a groundbreaking and much-loved (in this community, at least) fragrance. Reformulations aside, I can’t think of a more significant, teleological relaunch of a popular pillar fragrance as long as I’ve been in this hobby (which, admittedly, hasn’t been very long). Dior wasn’t coy about the change either (though perhaps I’m misremembering). We’ve since seen YSL relaunch Y edt out of necessity, but I wonder if we will see more of a concerted (and forthright) effort by brands to keep successful (or at least well-known) lines from languishing by tuning them every so often to changing tastes.

More importantly, though, Dior Homme 2020 coincided with a significant cultural zeitgeist. COVID-19 will leave a lasting impact on the world, and part of that impact may be a shift toward more introversion, so to speak: fewer nights out, more working from home, tighter budgets, and increased seclusion and anxiety. Dior Homme 2020 feels tailor-made for this kind of quieter (and perhaps more pensive) world. It’s lasting impact remains to be seen, but I wonder if we’re in the middle of a change in fragrance aesthetics.

There hasn’t been a worthy designer follow-up to Dior Homme 2020, though a couple have tried, from the banal (Calvin Klein Defy) to the irrelevant (Burberry Hero). Consider, though, that it took 5 years for Dior to jump on the Bleu de Chanel bandwagon, and the flurry of subsequent “blue” fragrances was met with no small amount of derision. Though I don’t have much niche experience, it also wouldn’t surprise me to see those houses play with this DNA (Is Malle’s Uncut Gems a contender?). Regardless, I look forward to whatever the rest of the decade will bring. What are your thoughts?
 

Varanis Ridari

The Scented Devil
Basenotes Plus
Oct 17, 2012
Dior Homme 2020 is a step back towards more traditional and conservative masculinity, focusing not on aquatic or gourmand notes, nor stuffing sweetness into a scent to make it more appealing for the opposite sex.

Rather, it's a modern re-working of a "man's man" fragrance from the late 1940's-early 1960's, when sour tangy citruses and dry woods over medicinal florals or urinous musks ruled the day; think Moustache or That Man to get the right idea, and then remove anything animalic to make it palatable to modern noses.

In essence, this stuff is postmodernism like what Tom Ford has pitched since 2006, just with a deceptively contemporary spit-shine placed on it by François Demachy. Of course, it is completely antithetical to the avant-garde genderbender that was Olivier Polge and Hedi Slimane's Dior Homme from 2005-2019, but that's the point.

Demachy is both old enough to remember when people commonly wore stuff like Monsieur de Givenchy, and smart enough to know they'd wear it again if the civet was yanked out in favor of a novel aromachemical like Dior Homme 2020's cashmeran overdose.

He also probably realized that guys who entered "the game" with Sauvage would eventually "outgrow" it too, so Dior Homme 2020 is one possible solution, and the upmarket Dior Sauvage Elixir being the other. I've seen scant competition aside from the aforementioned Burberry Hero above, so I can't say Dior Homme has been influential - yet.

Lastly, Terre d'Hermès has had this more mature men's traditional citrus and woods nü-chypre market cornered since 2006, so Dior probably wanted a shot at it since they already overtook Chanel at their own blue fragrance game. Just a guess.
 

PASCUAL

Basenotes Member
Jun 6, 2011
My new signature, absolutely beautiful. 1000 times better than bdc, which btw has a soury drydown that i cant stand anymore....hoping for an edp or flanker soon
 

speckmann0706

Basenotes Institution
Mar 8, 2017
I have returned to it and feel it is riding the current trends while having its own twist on them. Bleu De Chanel set the trend and this imo is another interpretation fresh mass pleasing and versatile everything that made BDC popular and excellent. I have not wore it quite enough to fully decide but I feel it will fair well in the future and others will try to match it's success and ideas. It stands out and doesn't smell like anything else currently when I first wore it I got strong similarities to Guerlain Homme Eau De Parfum that's about it.
 

d r e

Basenotes Dependent
Dec 24, 2018
I've only briefly tried it on test strips but it mostly just smelled like the woody dry down of Bleu de Chanel. Pretty good, have to test it more though.

I'm not sure what impact it's had on masculine perfumery so far, Burberry Hero is the only recent fragrance that resembles Dior Homme 2020 IMO
 

NettyYeti

Basenotes Junkie
Jan 28, 2016
Lastly, Terre d'Hermès has had this more mature men's traditional citrus and woods nü-chypre market cornered since 2006, so Dior probably wanted a shot at it since they already overtook Chanel at their own blue fragrance game. Just a guess.
Interesting; appreciate the thoughtful reply! I had TdH in mind, as well, when thinking about Dior Homme 2020. Also Jack Black JB and Escentric Molecules’ offerings.

Dior Homme 2020 isn’t groundbreaking, but it just feels different in a way that has me hoping for more. Maybe it’s just wishful thinking, but it feels like that contemporary-conservative aesthetic is becoming more en vogue, if only slightly.
 

Varanis Ridari

The Scented Devil
Basenotes Plus
Oct 17, 2012
Interesting; appreciate the thoughtful reply! I had TdH in mind, as well, when thinking about Dior Homme 2020. Also Jack Black JB and Escentric Molecules’ offerings.

Dior Homme 2020 isn’t groundbreaking, but it just feels different in a way that has me hoping for more. Maybe it’s just wishful thinking, but it feels like that contemporary-conservative aesthetic is becoming more en vogue, if only slightly.
The Bloo Joose Bros need to graduate into something, and it won't be a return to 70's amber fougères or 80's animalics, as Tom Ford already tried those with TF for Men and TF Noir for Men.
 

JyyskNotes

Super Member
Mar 12, 2012
While the new Dior Homme 2020 is a modern crowd pleaser I personally don’t like it at all. If I had to describe my feeling about the scent it would be just MEH. Just another Bleu de Chanel or Sauvage…I may sound extra salty as the Dior Homme Original is my all time favourite fragrance since over a decade and I really don’t understand to this day why they chose to pick the same name for a new fragrance that has zero similarities to the original. All in all I can see DH2020 fly off the shelves very well so I guess they did something right.
 

ScentDane

Super Member
May 17, 2018
I was also initially very underwhelmed with Dior Homme 2020. I thought it was much too mainstream and dull, especially considering Dior Homme original, that I also own and love (coincidentally wearing right now).
However, I have since warmed up to DH2020 tremendously and own a full bottle of it. As has been said above, it's an extremely versatile and safe scent that is still pleasing and inoffensive while still having a masculine expression. It has become my very definition of a dumb reach. This also goes along for the Dior Homme Sport 2021 that I also love for the exact same reasons.
It's not one that I wear every day, but I think it is a solid release, albeit "boring", but sometimes that is what you need and want.
 
Jul 7, 2012
it reworked a groundbreaking and much-loved (in this community, at least) fragrance.

Dior Homme 2020 is not a reworked Dior Homme.

Dior Homme 2020 is an entirely new fragrance with no relation to the previous Dior Homme. They made an entirely new fragrance and re-used the same name.

It's not reworked. It's not a reformulation. It is an entirely new scent.

My issue with the new Dior Homme 2020 is that the base is chemical trash. The opening is... fine. It's not exciting, but it's not bad. It's a nice-enough masculine citrus fragrance. I like it. But once that nice-enough masculine citrus fades, you're left with a monotonous fake patch-fake wood, emphasis on the fake wood, that goes on and on and on. The citrus is fine. The rest is junk.
 

AndyL

Basenotes Plus
Basenotes Plus
Feb 2, 2022
What are your thoughts?

The fragrance is one I own, wear and enjoy. It's an easy and enjoyable reach. Starts out light and bright, settles into a creamy woody musk. Comes off a bit synthetic, but enjoyable nonetheless.

Where it fits into the history of the industry, yesterday and tomorrow, I really can not comment on. Personally between the two, I much prefer DH Original which interestingly enough is not offered in the US market. But they are completely different fragrances so not fair to compare them.
 

Renato

Basenotes Institution
Oct 21, 2002
Not sure about your thoughts on a new period of introversion. I live in the most lockdown city in the world (Melbourne, Australia) where the government went nuts and yet, as of today, all Covid restrictions are lifted - no masks, no mandates, no compulsory isolation - like it never happened. Older people might wisely not be going out much, but young and middle aged people aren't worrying about Covid.

On the other hand, it depends where one lives. My brother is currently over in Italy and tells me that there is a greater general fear mode there than here.

I agree with you - I didn't think that CK Defy was impressive. But I'm far more impressed with the EDP version.
Regards,
Renato
 

Varanis Ridari

The Scented Devil
Basenotes Plus
Oct 17, 2012
Not sure about your thoughts on a new period of introversion. I live in the most lockdown city in the world (Melbourne, Australia) where the government went nuts and yet, as of today, all Covid restrictions are lifted - no masks, no mandates, no compulsory isolation - like it never happened. Older people might wisely not be going out much, but young and middle aged people aren't worrying about Covid.

On the other hand, it depends where one lives. My brother is currently over in Italy and tells me that there is a greater general fear mode there than here.

I agree with you - I didn't think that CK Defy was impressive. But I'm far more impressed with the EDP version.
Regards,
Renato
I like the EdP version of Defy as well.
 

Zenwannabee

Super Member
Sep 15, 2009
I also was underwhelmed at first by Dior 2020–but then I had to consciously withhold judgment as I’m such a fan of the original DH and DHI. Fast forward nearly two years after buying a bottle and I like it. Works great for office and evening, and like Sauvage, ironically, others seem to appreciate it more than I do. It still doesn’t have my heart like DH or DHI, and the use of all the new aromachemicals always is that extra caution to go easy on the trigger. Not sure if this is a harbinger of any future trend—and it’s interesting to compare this with, say, Hermes’ H24 and to see where the trends are pointing, or if they’re pointing in any one direction.
 

Toxicon

Basenotes Dependent
May 29, 2021
I went in hoping for a versatile, modern masculine I could wear to work; I know the backstory and had set expectations accordingly, but I wound up hating it anyway. Both times I wore it, a complete and total scrubber. I couldn't even bring myself to finish the sample. I'm not sure what's going on under the hood, but there's this obnoxiously loud sour musk note that dominates from the opening spray, and it lasts forever. It feels like bergamot mixed with some some kind of synthetic musk, filtered through the lens of a sour warheads candy; right before the headache kicks in, it feels like it's peeling the flesh from my sinuses. I've only seen a few other reviews describe a similar reaction, so either there's a toxic batch floating around, or a few of us have a note sensitivity to whatever they're overdosing here. Otherwise, about 12 hours later when that top note finally dries down, it does remind me of a slightly blue take on Terre d'Hermes. I could see why people would like that (so long as they can't smell what I smell up top).

Though the offending notes are different, I had a similar reaction to Bois Imperial and Gucci Guilty Absolute. All three interesting in their own right, but completely unwearable scrubbers due to something nasty in the opening. C'est la vie.
 
Aug 16, 2022
...I'm not sure what's going on under the hood, but there's this obnoxiously loud sour musk note that dominates from the opening spray, and it lasts forever. It feels like bergamot mixed with some some kind of synthetic musk, filtered through the lens of a sour warheads candy...
I sampled it and it reminded me very clearly of my grandparents' house from decades ago. I don't know why. My judgment of its appeal was "fine but not worth buying", but in retrospect I like that it was interesting.
 

NettyYeti

Basenotes Junkie
Jan 28, 2016
I also was underwhelmed at first by Dior 2020–but then I had to consciously withhold judgment as I’m such a fan of the original DH and DHI. Fast forward nearly two years after buying a bottle and I like it. Works great for office and evening, and like Sauvage, ironically, others seem to appreciate it more than I do. It still doesn’t have my heart like DH or DHI, and the use of all the new aromachemicals always is that extra caution to go easy on the trigger. Not sure if this is a harbinger of any future trend—and it’s interesting to compare this with, say, Hermes’ H24 and to see where the trends are pointing, or if they’re pointing in any one direction.
I agree that H24 is another interesting comparison. It also doesn’t wow me, but I appreciate that Christine Nagel maintained some of the “transparency” that Jean-Claude Ellena used with Hermès.

Another fragrance along similar lines that I don’t love but captures my attention is Hermetica’s Source1.
 

NettyYeti

Basenotes Junkie
Jan 28, 2016
…right before the headache kicks in, it feels like it's peeling the flesh from my sinuses…
I can relate with some of your experience. I loved TdH at first sniff, but it’s sometimes a difficult wear for me. DH2020 likewise isn’t something I enjoy wearing (though my sinuses are thankfully still intact), but the overall style is appealing. It’s a compliment-getter without being obnoxious. That said, I can see how, despite being fairly benign, it’s somewhat polarizing.
 

augustya

Basenotes Junkie
Oct 4, 2014
Like many, I was underwhelmed when I first tried Dior’s relaunched Homme in 2020. I touch base with it every now and then, and though it still doesn’t “wow” me, I appreciate it a lot more. I’m interested in hearing everyone’s thoughts on Dior Homme 2020, the influence it has had on mainstream masculine perfumery so far, and the potential it has to influence trends in the future.

A few (hopefully brief) thoughts of my own:

The launch of Dior Homme 2020 feels somewhat like a pivot point in masculine perfumery for a number of reasons. First, because it reworked a groundbreaking and much-loved (in this community, at least) fragrance. Reformulations aside, I can’t think of a more significant, teleological relaunch of a popular pillar fragrance as long as I’ve been in this hobby (which, admittedly, hasn’t been very long). Dior wasn’t coy about the change either (though perhaps I’m misremembering). We’ve since seen YSL relaunch Y edt out of necessity, but I wonder if we will see more of a concerted (and forthright) effort by brands to keep successful (or at least well-known) lines from languishing by tuning them every so often to changing tastes.

More importantly, though, Dior Homme 2020 coincided with a significant cultural zeitgeist. COVID-19 will leave a lasting impact on the world, and part of that impact may be a shift toward more introversion, so to speak: fewer nights out, more working from home, tighter budgets, and increased seclusion and anxiety. Dior Homme 2020 feels tailor-made for this kind of quieter (and perhaps more pensive) world. It’s lasting impact remains to be seen, but I wonder if we’re in the middle of a change in fragrance aesthetics.

There hasn’t been a worthy designer follow-up to Dior Homme 2020, though a couple have tried, from the banal (Calvin Klein Defy) to the irrelevant (Burberry Hero). Consider, though, that it took 5 years for Dior to jump on the Bleu de Chanel bandwagon, and the flurry of subsequent “blue” fragrances was met with no small amount of derision. Though I don’t have much niche experience, it also wouldn’t surprise me to see those houses play with this DNA (Is Malle’s Uncut Gems a contender?). Regardless, I look forward to whatever the rest of the decade will bring. What are your thoughts?

You have a Nose Fatigue !! Dior Homme 2020 is the Best Dior Homme that Dior has ever Created. Thank God we got rid of that Repulsive, Headache giving Lipstick/Makeup Box Smell. This one smells So clean, Fresh and Very Likable ! Who is regretting about the earlier Dior Homme other than you.
 

augustya

Basenotes Junkie
Oct 4, 2014
I also was underwhelmed at first by Dior 2020–but then I had to consciously withhold judgment as I’m such a fan of the original DH and DHI. Fast forward nearly two years after buying a bottle and I like it. Works great for office and evening, and like Sauvage, ironically, others seem to appreciate it more than I do. It still doesn’t have my heart like DH or DHI, and the use of all the new aromachemicals always is that extra caution to go easy on the trigger. Not sure if this is a harbinger of any future trend—and it’s interesting to compare this with, say, Hermes’ H24 and to see where the trends are pointing, or if they’re pointing in any one direction.

I second that. Others seem to like and enjoy it more than the person wearing does. It is very Mass Pleasing, Likable scent. I have so many people ask me, you smell very Fresh and Clean what are you wearing ?
 
Jul 17, 2016
I know I'm late to the party with this response but I love the new Dior Homme. I strongly dislike how most frags handle iris, or at least how they smell on my skin. Iris normally goes full lipstick/makeup on my skin, I know people make of point of saying "Fragrance X Iris doesn't smell like makeup" but on me most of them end up in that area. There are exceptions but they are so random that I can't work out a pattern. For instance, Givenchy Intense is fine, the others in the line aren't. I full accept that this is my nose and not the products themselves.
So with the fragrance being reworked I absolutely love the new Dior Homme.

My question is: Why is it called Dior Homme? It's clearly a different fragrance from the original Dior Homme, to the point that if someone bought it and expected the original they would probably be upset over the change. And if people dislike the original they most likely aren't going to give the new one a try because the name is the same.
I completely get the concept of brand recognition, flankers and using an established name in an attempt to get people to try a product unrelated to the original ie Gucci Guilty and Gucci Guilty Absolute, and I understand that can backfire when the flanker is nothing like the original. Once again, Gucci Guilty Absolute.
But why not a somewhat new name, like Dior Homme Reborn/Resurrection/Metamorphosis etc? Let people know it's a change and you're going to be going in a new direction. Just my two cents.
I'm glad I saw this thread, I'm in the process of selling almost all of my wardrobe and rebuilding and Dior Homme 2020 is exactly what I need for a work fragrance for all seasons.
 

augustya

Basenotes Junkie
Oct 4, 2014
I know I'm late to the party with this response but I love the new Dior Homme. I strongly dislike how most frags handle iris, or at least how they smell on my skin. Iris normally goes full lipstick/makeup on my skin, I know people make of point of saying "Fragrance X Iris doesn't smell like makeup" but on me most of them end up in that area. There are exceptions but they are so random that I can't work out a pattern. For instance, Givenchy Intense is fine, the others in the line aren't. I full accept that this is my nose and not the products themselves.
So with the fragrance being reworked I absolutely love the new Dior Homme.

My question is: Why is it called Dior Homme? It's clearly a different fragrance from the original Dior Homme, to the point that if someone bought it and expected the original they would probably be upset over the change. And if people dislike the original they most likely aren't going to give the new one a try because the name is the same.
I completely get the concept of brand recognition, flankers and using an established name in an attempt to get people to try a product unrelated to the original ie Gucci Guilty and Gucci Guilty Absolute, and I understand that can backfire when the flanker is nothing like the original. Once again, Gucci Guilty Absolute.
But why not a somewhat new name, like Dior Homme Reborn/Resurrection/Metamorphosis etc? Let people know it's a change and you're going to be going in a new direction. Just my two cents.
I'm glad I saw this thread, I'm in the process of selling almost all of my wardrobe and rebuilding and Dior Homme 2020 is exactly what I need for a work fragrance for all seasons.
Dior Homme 2020 is Wow !!
 
Aug 16, 2022
My question is: Why is it called Dior Homme? It's clearly a different fragrance from the original Dior Homme, to the point that if someone bought it and expected the original they would probably be upset over the change. And if people dislike the original they most likely aren't going to give the new one a try because the name is the same.
It only makes sense to me if it had abysmal sales, and they wanted to change it but retain the flagship name. You can only have one "[brand] for [sex]". I don't know how it's working out financially, but it's definitely confusing and it might have been better if they changed the bottle more and put something like "New for 2020" on the box for a year.
 

NettyYeti

Basenotes Junkie
Jan 28, 2016
I have a test strip at my desk from over a week ago that’s still going strong. It’s not a heavy projector, but that drydown lasts, and it’s my favorite part of the fragrance. After the 2010’s explosion of Bleu de Chanel and Invictus copycats and wanna-be’s, I could live with this kind of fragrance as a new trend. It’s growing on me more than the Bleu trend ever did, at least. I hope H24 is a harbinger of more to come in this style (even if I’m also not ga-ga over that one).
 

Foamywax

Basenotes Dependent
May 2, 2013
Does anybody remember the hatred that was shown for DH 2020 two years ago? "Awful". "Boring". "Trash". Haha
Now it's considered chic and very stylish. I bought a bottle last January because there was a mix up at the store and the bottle of fahrenheit I ordered wasn't there so it was either this or Higher. I chose DH 2020 blindly.
I haven't worn it in a while but when I do I get compliments. I love the sort of sweet lemony note that comes out discreetly over the woods. Now the woods...well it's obviously full of iso e super although the Dior website says it has real cedar hand chiseled at the Dior lab. Who knows for sure? I get Soo noseblind to iso e super most of the time so I'm sure others enjoy this more than me. I do like it. Very dry and chic
 

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