Columns Addicted: The Worst Thing I Ever Smelled

Addicted: The Worst Thing I Ever Smelled

01/02/16 05:00:50 (262 comments)

by: Dr. Marlen Elliot Harrison

When I was a child my parents strongly influenced my initiation into the world of fragrance. They each had a signature scent and this made regular gift giving a breeze; I always knew just what to buy. While I liked the spicy vanilla of my mother's Shalimar by Guerlain, I was rather indifferent to the citrus musk of my father's Royal Copenhagen. Both of these scents were staples for my parents and they rarely deviated apart from Mom's alternate, Cacharel AnaÏs Anaïs, and Dad's one-time bottle of original Azzaro pour Homme.

One of my favorite Shalimar ads from 1968, "A tribute to the beginning of love."

Mom had regularly received other perfumes but never wore them; into the closet they went to be regifted to some lucky future recipient. There was one exception - a fragrance which somehow never seemed to disappear. I don't know if it was because the person who gave the gift was held in such high esteem or if the fragrance held some kind of special meaning.

Once during home renovations, as we packed my mother's closet, I actually got to take a sniff of this mysterious scent and I have to say this: it was, simply, the worst thing I'd ever smelled (hereafter referred to simply as TWTIES). After sniffing TWTIES, I made a face that looked something like this:

     "This is a perfume?" I asked.

     "What do you mean?" my mother responded.

     "I mean...it's...disgusting."

     I took another sniff as she added, "It's French; it was a gift."

     "It's terrible; the worst thing I've ever smelled," I concluded, and that was that.

I never forgot the aroma - bitter, oily, dry, harsh and reminiscent of a vacuum cleaner belt about to snap from overuse, starting to burn in its weary resistance. Or perhaps it reminded me of the stench of singed hair. Or maybe it recalled the industrial odors of the corner gas station garage.

Out of curioisty and in response to the stunning and passionate reviews of TWTIES here at Fragrantica, I recently considered that perhaps I had approached the aroma with a child's inexperienced nose. Perhaps my more mature and refined sniffer would react differently. Maybe it was time to experience TWTIES again.

So off to Ebay I went in search of a bargain bottle, not a difficult feat since the price is so affordable and the scent is still in production after 55 years! I even opted for the EDP version as it was only a few dollars more than the EDT and so I could examine TWTIES in all its purported glory.

When I received my bottle I was anxious with anticipation. Was I about to release the demon or would I find a mature, retro, leather-focused chypre? I was hoping for something that would evoke images like this:

Or maybe this:

I carefully opened the box and was immediately reminded of the bottle I knew from childhood, though this newer version was no longer octagonal, transparent glass but flat and two-sided.

I sprayed once on the wrist and much to my disappointment discovered the foul stench of yesteryear. "Oh no!" I thought, "this is truly the worst thing I've ever smelled."

There have been fragrances which have crossed my path that I just could not appreciate: often these aromas contained notes of cumin, gaiac wood, oakmoss, vetiver, rosewood or aldehydes. TWTIES contained oakmoss, vetiver AND aldehydes. The horror.

That's a different Marlon in Apocalypse Now.

I offered my arm to my mother, sitting in the other room, either to sadistically torture her or see if she would remember the scent...or both.

     "What is THAT?" she asked with a face of displeasure.

     "Don't you recognize it?" I inquired.

     "It's terrible."

     "Yup."

     "Maybe the worst thing I've smelled."

     "Yup."

     "Blech!"

     "Yup. You used to own this."

     "Never!"

     "You did," I insisted.

     "I never wore that! It's disgusting!" she said angrily.

     "I didn't say you wore it, but you owned it. I think you received it as a gift."

Done. My suspicions were confirmed that all those who praised this monstrosity were no fragrance friends of mine. So bad was the stench that I had to wash my arm in the sink. Sadly, TWTIES just craved my attention and persistently refused to abandon my skin. Stubborn! And that's just what this fragrance's name means.

Tobacco? Leather? Patchouli? Sure - the inside of an old leather handbag once owned by a lipstick-addicted chain smoker. Sandalwood? Amber? Musk? Really? No way!

And so it was - TWTIES was no mere idiosyncracy of a child's nose but a full-fledged stink that I couldn't think of ever wearing. Though some folks suggested that it reminded them of this...

I was immediately reminded of something else entirely:

And now I understand why Mom had kept her bottle all those years; she couldn't bring herself to punish someone by gifting them with TWTIES.

If you follow my articles here at Fragrantica or anywhere else I've written, you'll know that I never write negative reviews of aromas. I made a conscious decision to never spend 500 words waxing poetic about the abominable odors launching at your local perfume counter. I review what I have strong positive reactions to as there is enough enchantment in the fragrance world to keep me writing for the next hundred years. However, I did think many of you could relate to today's anecdote. And so, like experiencing a terrible dish at a restaurant, I'm willing to share so that you, too, might ponder the horror.


Tell me about your fragrant nemesis or what you think TWTIES might be in a comment below: Three commenters will receive a decant of TWTIES direct from my stinky bottle, shipped anywhere in the world, FREE!

 

Images from top top bottom: Etsy.com; Giphy.com; Ernest Procter, "The Interior of a Garage Boulogne," Imperial War Museum; Etsy.com; Travel.India.com; Giphy.com; Wikipedia.org; Fragrantica.com; e-xpressor.com; Giphy.com

Other articles in this series:

Dr. Marlen Elliot Harrison

Executive Editor

Dr. Marlen Elliot Harrison’s journalism in the fragrance industry has appeared in international print and online publications such as PlayboyMen’s JournalMen’s Health and the New York Times. Marlen also works as a writing project coordinator for The Smithsonian’s National Museum of the American Indian and as a professor/faculty supervisor for Southern New Hampshire University’s online graduate programs in Writing and Literature. Learn more about Marlen at www.MarlenHarrison.com.

 

 



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mimissekat
mimissekat

Worst perfumes I've smelled are: Katy Perry Meow and Chanel no.5

And all those old-lady-like perfumes with a lot of spices and florals. Yikes.
I think Estee Lauder has a lot of those smells.

Jan
06
2017
lvcougar702
lvcougar702

My TWTIES are White Diamonds by Elizabeth Taylor, Orchid Soleil by Tom Ford, a lot of Bath and Bodyworks scents because they all seen to have that funky "undersmell"...yuck!

Jan
06
2017
iamoir
iamoir

Real conversations with people when they smell Coco Mademoiselle Chanel on me:
- have you moped the floor again?
- what soap did you use? No offense, it's clean and fresh but it's like detergent.
- honey, don't want to offend you, but better take a bath after cleaning the house .( and I haven't even done any chores). The last one from my partner was what made me dislike it.
I simply cannot wear it. It's not just that I don't like the scent. It's mediocre to okay on a paper strip and I guess it blooms on other people's skins, but it refuses to co-operate with my skin chemistry. Once all the citruses set and the perfume develops, oooooooh the floor cleaning liquid horror unveils itself.

No. Just no.

Jan
05
2017
MissAnnette
MissAnnette

My TWTIES are reformulated Jean Patou Joy and YSL Kouros. Both smell like unflushed toilet in a public restroom on me. I initially thought it is because my nose isn't sophisticated enough to appreciate the beauty of Joy but I had my mom and friends told me the arm where I sprayed Joy smells like (excuse me) piss so I think it's my chemistry that is making Joy smell like urine. :'(

Jan
05
2017
LLB_addict
LLB_addict

At first, the fragrance that jumped into my head after simply reading your subject was Gres Cabotine. I smelled this in 90F heat and was horrified at how horrible it smelled. To this day and with a better trained nose, I still cannot try it again in winter to see the difference. There HAS to be one.

Then my brain jumped to equally horrific Clinique Aromatics......again in deep summer. EQUALLY horrific. And both of them had to be scrubbed and scrubbed and scrubbed to get the stench down to where I couldn't smell them just by moving my arm. However, they were both STILL a skin scent if you put your nose down to the area where sprayed. WTH?!?


However, it was a recent buy that honestly had the worst fragrance (if you can even call it a perfume!) top, heart AND base.....and all three were DIFFERENT horrible smells! That fragrance was IMAGINARY AUTHORS - VIOLET DISGUISE *bleck* Truly - via MY nose - should have been named Violet Disgust. Honestly.......horrible. AND I was not alone in this feeling. And AGAIN.....scrubbing numerous times finally brought it down to where it was bearable. I can't stop shaking my head at how horrific this was. I purchased it from a Google approved site as well....so I know it was not a fraud. All I can say is.....just don't go THERE.

Jan
02
2017
remy.cullen.5
remy.cullen.5

Dior Homme Intense
Tom Ford Noir Extreme
Prada Candy

Jan
02
2017
LadyPilot
LadyPilot

I've had some more TWTIES appear on my personal list recently:

Sarah Jessica Parker "Lovely" - it's a perfume that perfectly matches the picture of the LOVELY donkey above:D Meant to be cute but turns out to be awfully animalic... :-O Beaver's or some other mammal's secretion... No, it's beaver's for sure!

Patchouli Boheme by LM PERFUMES - wet, wooden cellar covered with mould, visited by cats that made it into their toilet plus some patchouli natural oil spillt on the floor... Horror!!!

Jan
02
2017
PerfumeEmpress
PerfumeEmpress

LOL. LoneCamel, welcome to my club (the I Usually Love What Most People Hate & Vice Versa Club; we meet every time a new Eau de Mallrat, or its flanker, is launched).

I read some of the comments here and I can't belive what some people consider TWTIES.

Oh, well. There's no account for taste, and all that.

Jan
02
2017
smellysmellerson
smellysmellerson

Fifth Avenue After 5
Avon Timeless
Chanel No.5
Davidoff Champion
Chopard Enchanted Midnight Spell
Mitsouko
Vanderbilt
Rochas Man
DKNY Energizing Woman(all)
Coty Vanilla Fields
Ralph Lauren Romance

The worst is Timeless which truly makes me feel nauseous. Close second is Fifth Avenue which smells like lemon pledge with a hint of vomit.

Jan
02
2017
corkscrewcurly
corkscrewcurly

I just revisited this article for fun and enjoyed reading the comments. I need to add to my list of TWTIES (and of course, with apologies to anyone who loves them):

Cabochard Gres (which I am sure is the perfume referred to in the above article)
Cabotine Gres
Asja Fendi
Youth Dew Estee Lauder
Ange ou Demon Givenchy
Mitsouko Guerlain
Violette Angel Thierry Mugler
Chanel No. 5

I've got a small full bottle of Youth Dew to swap within the UK - in fact, PM me and I'll send you it for the price of P&P!

Jan
02
2017
marsiesmoon
marsiesmoon

This article is definitely about Cabochard Gres . It used to come in an octagon shaped bottle, just as described here .

Jan
01
2016
JMSG
JMSG

Kerosene Black Vines. Vile. And it's terribly hard to scrub off, too.

Jan
01
2016
antihero
antihero

Thank you for the hilarious article. What fun!

Mine are Paris YSL: I imagine vinegar with a dead fly floating in the bottle.

And Tresor. Just no.

Jan
01
2016
Siv55
Siv55

I'm massively irritated that the author does not reveal what she didn't like. Why is there this bizarre and twisted version of politeness when it comes to hating some scents? These are consumer products being reviewed, you are all ALLOWED TO HATE THEM, they're not kittens or your mate's new boyfriend. Hate away, it won't bother me, even if it's something I like. Tastes differ and nose receptors are genetically different. Just tell us what you didn't like! TRUST ME, SOME OF US WOULD APPRECIATE IT!

Jan
01
2016
akawanis
akawanis

Such a sweetly romantic bottle. Never in a trillion years did I expect such a hyper-sexual, urinous, tentacle-monster to fly out of it.

It was an all-systems shut down. I truly believe Bal a Versailles stunted my growth.

My Mom had received it as a gift as well. And thankfully had the right mind to never wear it. This experience also taught me a lesson about going through my Mom's stuff. :-)

Jan
01
2016
kapted
kapted

Sadly, Chanel 22 is straight up revultion on my skin.

Please don't tell me it is VC&A's First, or Rochas' Madame Rochas...

Jan
01
2016
sugarplumbdolly
sugarplumbdolly

Obsession for Men. Pass me the oxygen mask. It's like wild turkey mixed with dirty motor oil and festering work boots. Never dared to smell the women's version but I'm sure it's foul.
The Tabu my g'ma used to wear and Thierry Mugler Angel also rank right up there. And, this will be unpopular because I know it's well loved but, I gave someone Vera Wang Princess and that chocolately note made her smell like BO. I own other lovely VW fragrances but I can't stand that one. Must be a similar thing as with Angel.

Dec
31
2016
emt1986
emt1986

Haha, I forgot about this until I read patxaran's comment...

When I was a kid, I think age 8 or 9, I bought my mom a bottle of "French Perfume" at a dollar store as a Christmas present. She told me in later years that she had planned to spritz it down the drain a few times every day until it was gone, but that it wound up being ok enough to wear in small amounts.

And, when I was in middle school, another dollar store had a knock-off of Tommy Girl that I actually liked better than the real thing.

Even now I am sure that either one would be miles ahead of Cabochard in my esteem, lol.

Dec
31
2016
babayaga
babayaga

JOOP.
Anais Anais close second.

Dec
31
2016
patxaran
patxaran

TWTIES for me: Blue Grass, Kate Moss Vintage Muse, EA Sunflowers. Oh and that unspeakable stuff my Mum bought at a Poundshop and refuses to stop wearing (sorry!!). I don't even know it's name. I hope they'll go bust and she won't be able to find it ever again... LOL

Dec
31
2016
luxurylover
luxurylover

I remember when I smelled Blue Grass by Elizabeth Arden, it gave me nausea... possibly the worst scent I´ve ever smelled.

Aug
24
2016
juniemoon
juniemoon

Edit: I was actually thinking about ordering a bottle of Cabochard Gres or was it Cabochine di Gres, now I am confused.about which one is the fragrance in question that I was looking at on the site I was perusing. From the comments I am not sure which is the offending smell. Are they very similar?

Should add that oakmoss and marigold is a very vile combination. I blind bought Liz by Liz Claiborne a few weeks ago. Simply putrid! Not according to many of the reviews, however. Smelled like mouldy hay in a dirty barn. Back it went tout suite.

I know Angel has been around for years but I just got around to trying it for the first time a few days ago mostly because of what many of you have said about it here. I just sprayed some in the air and sniffed it as I was too wary to spray it on myself. SO glad I didn't, my God! Cat piss B.O., and strong patchouli I think? So utterly disgusting I leaned forward choking and sneezing for almost five minutes. For the life of me I can't understand how this stuff is so popular. I'm not trying to be a drama queen, it really was that bad. What the hell do they put in it to make it so revolting?

Have to say this column is great and these comments are too funny. I love this website. I never miss a day coming here!

Aug
23
2016
mothwings
mothwings

I wish you used the perfume's real name, so I could look it up and see the notes and reviews. Oh well.

Aug
23
2016
dorothea333
dorothea333

... and to MadMadamMimm

Is it Cashmere Mist?
Which I really like by the way :-)

Aug
23
2016
dorothea333
dorothea333

I think the article is about Cabochard Gres :-)

Actually one of the worst perfumes I have smelled, was Cabotine from Gres.

I really thought, I would like it, the notes looked so interesting, and the story about it was so good. I was so excited to try it out, when I got a sample of it...

My good God - it was horrible.

I think, I called it 'pure evil in a bottle' in my review of the fluid.
I was chocked by it, and I washed it off really quickly, I simply couldn't consider letting it develop, it was just too scary.
And I couldn't give away the sample either, as I sometimes do, as I just couldn't put another human being through the same experience.
But to my surprise a lot of people loved it with passion. The reviews in here were very much for it or against it.

I think negative reviews are a good thing. Often we read the reviews on Fragrantica, when we consider blind buying a perfume, and it is certainly not enough to know only about the good experiences of a perfume. Both negative and positive experiences together are like the small coloured pieces in a kaleidoscope, and it is nice to know if a perfume can strongly divide peoples opinions.

(If anyone gets curious and wants try Cabochard it is available in allbeauty dot com (UK) It's 23 to 30 dollars for 100 ml of either edT or edP).

Aug
23
2016
marinatatti
marinatatti

Chanel no 5 is by far the worst perfume for my skin and those around me!

Aug
23
2016
N°0012
N°0012

L'Ombre Dans L'Eau by Diptyque has to be the worst thing I've ever smelled. I love Diptyque but this is the most head-throbbing, sharp, shrill fragrance I've ever encountered. I am rarely sensitive to fragrances but this one rapidly gives me a migraine and induces nausea instantly. To me it reeks of sour urine, rotten cilantro, dying tomato plants, aspartame, and overly ripe berries.

Aug
22
2016
joerodeo92
joerodeo92

Yatagan by Caron: Imagine a spittoon filled to the rim with the spit of 100 dipping rednecks who haven't brushed their teeth since Bush Jr's inaugural address mixed with the lovely odor of rotten celery. Disgusted? Well, that's what you get with Yatagan, folks. The reviews (positive reviews, that is) shocked me considering what my nose told me when I took my first sniff. I had to miss a day of work to recover.

Secretions Magnifiques isn't really supposed to smell good conventionally speaking, so no shock there. Guerlain's Jicky......ugh. Shocked to know that Sean Connery wears it. The lavender and vanilla coalesce to form something akin to vomit on a sidewalk outside of a bar on a Saturday night. Again...no.

Aug
22
2016
corkscrewcurly
corkscrewcurly

Loved reading this article.

TWTIES of mine are listed below; I am not sure I can single one out as being THE WTIES, though!

Cabotine de Gres - ghastly shireking mess
Mitsouko Guerlain - WHY do people rave about this?
Cabochard Gres - YUCK!
Ange ou Demon Givenchy - What were they thinking?
Violette Angel Thierry Mugler - BO in a bottle

I blind buy fragrances based on reviews on Fragrantica and the "people who like this also like..." recommendations. I am disabled and can't access shops easily; if I do go shopping, I get panicky and certainly couldn't spray something on my wrist and then wander off for a couple of hours, giving it a chance to dry down.

Blind buying means I occasionally have a disaster, and Mitsouko was a particularly expensive one.

I am starting to narrow down which notes make a fragrance repulsive to me, so I no longer even contemplate trying ANYTHING with oakmoss in it. I am wary of violets too, as they seem to turn to BO on my skin. I spend a considerable amount of time in the shower every day, ensuring I DON'T smell bad...

Aug
22
2016
juniemoon
juniemoon

Before my female cat got fixed, she would crouch down with her azz in the air and shoot a stream of the foulest rotten musky/ammonia smelling liquid into the air.

Now I am generally a fan of Zara frags. BUT, one day I saw a men's one I hadn't tried before called Zara playa del carmen so of course I was going to check it out. I picked it up and when I pressed the nozzle it shot out in a stream just like my cat had done, and smelled just as pissy and horrific, talk about deja vu! Sheesh! Yuck!

"Honourable" mentions:

Obsession: both men's and women's. Burnt motor oil and cigarette butts is all I get. Horrid.

Gotta agree with Tam - Tommy Hilfiger men's True Star - repulsive. Was at a discount perfumery and they had scads of boxes of this stuff stacked up high at an almost giveaway price and it's still like that months later. Go figure. lol! And anything Beyonce - just so gross and beyond cheap smelling and is gone in five minutes. Stay classy there Beyonce, to put your name on this garbage.

Aug
22
2016
synergypsy
synergypsy

I'd read this article and comments months ago and didn't comment. Because I'm embarrassed to say that many, many fragrances are on my "Oh, yuck" list. That list would be way longer than my "like" or "love" lists combined.

But, thinking about it, I'd have to say that the most hideous fragrance I ever smelled, TWTIES was "Sunflowers".

May
06
2016
Xango
Xango

Also late to the party but hands down, Thierry Mugler's Angel. It's too stuffy, too much, and straight up gives me the worst headache.

Second place goes to Elizabeth Taylor's White Diamonds.

May
06
2016
SuperVixen1108
SuperVixen1108

My worst... Angel by Theirry Mugler turns into armpits on me. Straight up armpits! OMG it's bloody horrendous! And so I was at Bloomingdale's of my best friend just sort of hanging around the fragrance section when a sales lady started talking about how wonderful angel is an out anybody can wear it. At first I politely declined a sample and said it doesn't agree with my body chemistry. But then she pushed and pushed it and finally the only way to make her shut up was to let her spray some of God awful stuff on me. Sure enough right here before her eyes I started to smell like I hadn't had a bath in five days and had no idea what deodorant was. I stunk to high heaven. The couple who were shopping near us moved away I'm pretty sure that the stench hit them as well. As the lady sat there mouth agape and completely mortified I asked if she wanted to sniff me to believe me and then asked if she had an alcohol wipes so I can make myself fit for further human companionship. When informed she did not have any alcohol wipes I decided then and there that the shopping trip is over for the day.

May
06
2016
avagard
avagard

My personal stinkers are:
Dior, Addict
Dior, Hypnotic Poison
Chanel, number 5
Dior, Farenheit
Tom Ford, Black Orchid
Tom Ford, Noir de Noir
Lancome, Tresor
Clinique, Happy, worst thing ever smelled, not even good as an air spray in the bathroom
Issey Miyake, Eau d'Issey ( male and female versions)
Kenzo, Flower
La Perla, J'aime la nuit
And many, many others..
For my nose the most part of the designers' releases either stink of bugs'spray or have a fragrance I would use for the laundry in the washing machine ( I used that way black orchid :-D).I hate many niche releases as well, but being them less widespread in the general audience they're much more bearable and less likely to be smelled in the air. Last night I tried "Message in a bottle" by Mark Buxton and to fall asleep I had to open the windows, really headache inducing..

May
06
2016
Lizka7
Lizka7

My TWITIES are Angel, Flower bomb, Kenzo Jungle, anything Kenzo really, Shalimar, Chanel N5, Casmir.
All allergy inducing, hyperventilation, anddesire to stay away.
Chanel N 5 damage quite a bit of my clothes, because no detergent could wash it out, some staying power here.
Kenzo is asthma provoking line. Welcome to the allergy world!
Osmanthus is borderline TWITIES, sometimes it is good, sometimes it is too much, the same as mimosa to me, and I'don't like most synthetics, this is why I probably like smelling natural oils, and all kinds of spiceis.

May
05
2016
Tam
Tam

I must be the only person in the world who doesn't get a huge blast in the face from Cabochard. On me it dries down to a formal, well spoken headmistress. It is one of my boyfriend's favourite fumes on me. When compared to some of today's sugary sillage monsters... talking of which my TWITIES is Beyonce Heat is all its shapes and forms with True Star coming in a close second (nothing personal against Beyonce - just don't like the fragrances she endorses).

May
05
2016
ameskay
ameskay

My TWTIES is,... Avon Vanilla Soft Musk.

It's just, cat's urine smell on me. It disagreed with my own nose, even. My ex-officemate used to drenched herself with it and made me nauseous, my eyes twitched like crazy as if the scent was sprayed directly into my eyes they burn like mad.

May
04
2016
Floffles
Floffles

Men's most gag worthy:

1. Ducati
2. Grey Flannel
3. Lacoste Booster

Women's most gag worthy:

1. Bvlgari Black (the original which was actually a unisex one. not sure if its still in production...)
2. Ralph Lauren Big Pony #4 Purple
3. Versace Crystal Noir

May
04
2016
shiva-woman
shiva-woman

I had the mis/fortune to have both a past of lovely sandalwoods, Tabu & Estee Lauders--but also--Jean Nate, Giorgio, and Estee's Beautiful (my formative and sexual awakening years were the late 80's). Now, drug-store Jean Nate is not "the worst" though getting there--but Giorgio and Beautiful make me sick to my stomach. I can recognize them in an instant (fortunately, not many wear them very often). Your article made me think of car crashes and the way so often we slowly drive by, hoping for the best, thinking of our own plight, seeing the scene of destruction.

Well, when I think of Giorgio and Beautiful--I now want to revisit that dreadful impact site and inspect the carnage. I just looked up their notes and I "should" like them. If only I could try once again, without heaving. I have other "big 80's" perfumes which I appreciate for their silage, longevity, creativity. Each bottle will last me a few lifetimes. But those two are the WORST: Eyes burning, nose twitching, stomach turning smells.

As I read the responses, I was comforted to see that Angel made the list. So these are my "runners-up" and contenders for "Nearly the worst smell ever": I'm trying...desperatey...to..."like" or even "appreciate"...Angel (because it is/was so groundbreaking and chocolicious). I can't stand Flowerbomb. Bought the whole thing. Sold it on Ebay. Don't miss it...at all. La Vie est Belle is also up there on "pretty disgusting." Clinique's "Happy" is "Horrid." Tressor is "Terrible." There are a whole host of lesser runners-up of fruity-tastic flower berry-bombs out there, but the ones above are my "IT" list.

I will add, however, that some of my old-time favorites (Youth Dew! & Clinique Aromatics) are apparently "gag-worthy" out there. I'm still on the young side of "Youth Dew" (which I was bathing in merrily at 10 years of age), but I love it. I don't reach for it often--but I know it's there. So, to each his/her own. I'm into resins, amber-vanilla-tabac-woods, ouds, deep moody flowers, Serge Lutens, Guerlains and Coco. Still love much of the Estee line (Azuree). Some well-made gourmands float my boat--but in general, the mainstream, mall-fragrances particularly from 2005--2015 have been "gawd-awful. Even the Calone 90's were better than this. Very interesting to read what is TWTIES.

May
04
2016
Sanskilainen
Sanskilainen

I do not have Cabochard Gres but I have other leathers that wake that reaction in others. Lots of fun!
My personal nemesis is Eternity by Calvin Klein. I cannot say what it is that makes me panic but if ever a person gets on the bus or train wearing Eternity I just escape. Horrid!

May
04
2016
Jurg
Jurg

@jillita 'Notable drydown of smegma' - hilarious!

My folks always wore rank perfume / aftershave. My mum always overapplied Cacharel's Lou Lou (of the aforementioned quote above) ahead of an evening out to the point where my sister and I would struggle to breathe for the next 30 minutes.

My father wore Givenchy Gentleman, which, although nice, got mixed up in my mind with his own personal odour(s), so put me off it.

My mum's second husband wears Cacharel pour l'Homme, which I can't stand. It's the quintessential 80s man's scent as far as I can tell, even down to the bad font on the packaging. Alan Partridge maybe wears it too, or holds it in high esteem.

So Cacharel gets two scores against.

May
04
2016
PerfumeEmpress
PerfumeEmpress

The worst thing I ever smelled? Well, there are many candidates, but right off the top of my head I'd say:

L.A.M.B., Gwen Stefani (discontinued; yes, there is a God)

Pink Sugar, Acquolina (candy floss in a bottle).

Lucky No. 6, Liz Claiborne (emetic disguised as perfume; discontinued , TG).

Juicy Couture (Eau de Mallrat at it's worst)

Goodness, those are bad. Actually make me gag. Yuck.

May
03
2016
Jyrhara
Jyrhara

I don't really have a TWTIES but I do have a TMETIEBAR (the most expensive thing I ever bought and regretted). It's Must De Cartier. I bought the vintage parfum because someone said it was pure heaven... and after that I started sampling! That thing is so bitter I can't imagine ever changing my mind about it.
Still trying to find a way to get rid of it :-(

Apr
27
2016
krmarich
krmarich

Mine are Drakkar Noir and Polo. To think that I used to wear them them 30 years ago! I guess the over saturation by the masses ruined them. The originals are not half as bad the current formulations. Stomach turners!!!

Any "fruitcholis" or cashmeran based rubbish induces migraines.

As far as vintages go its Je Reviens. Its bad hairspray mixed with old, stale cosmetics dug up from Mommy Dearest's grave. Who could wear this and enjoy it? I have a small bottle that I would not even gift it away. "NO WIRE HANGERS OR JE REVIENS!!!"

Mar
25
2016
learnincurve
learnincurve

Mine is the reason I found Fragrantia, it was so god awful I felt the need to complain about it somewhere. It is Far Away by Avon.
I don't know how she got hold of it or who gave it to her, but my 12 year old had a bottle and when she sprayed it so I could have a smell, it went all over my keyboard. So now I had this awful awful perfume with massive silage and longevity surrounding me for days until I caved and bought a new keyboard.

I have never really liked vanilla but after this I've become hyper sensitive to it, and just can't stand it as a main note any more. Which is unfortunate because it's the cheap lazy go to in most modern perfumes.

Mar
25
2016
mongibella
mongibella

For me the grossest gross of all grosses is Made in Heaven by Lab on Fire... brrr, rotten milk and urine with radioactive staying power... My coat still stinks of it WEEKS after I accidentally sprayed it in a shop.

Mar
25
2016
guest_
guest_

As you will quickly discover in reading this post, I'm a "certain age", which means that I grew up in the era when every adult in America smoked. Both my parents were chain smokers and as a result I have an almost phobic reaction to anything smacking of an ashtray or tobacco smoke. Fast forward 18 years when my first "real" job was as a telephone operator on the old cord boards like you see in B&W movies. (Yes, I'm ancient. I actually LIKE complex, resinous, balsamic "old lady perfumes".) We sat six inches apart for hours on end, unable to even turn around in our chairs. I have two "TWTIES" from that time: Youth Dew and Opium. YD was the bath of choice for one very nice but chain smoking lady who chewed Juicy Fruit gum to cover her festering ashtray breath. It smelled like a tar-covered rotting fruit bowl in Hell sitting next to a hamper full of old mildewed gym clothes.

Opium was the social "screen" of choice for another coworker whose alcoholism sadly killed her. She drank her lunch and carried a vanilla bottle full of the cheapest bourbon she could find in her purse. Combined with Opium's spicy heavy hitting, it was sweetly redolent of concentrated awfulness.

How about some of the mens' fragrance TWTIES? Jade East? Hai Karate? Brut? English Leather?

Mar
25
2016
LoneCamel
LoneCamel

HAHAHA! I find myself skimming through the comments making mental notes of all the heavy oriental monster stuff people hate - because i KNOW I will love them :D I'm no pro but surely TWTIES must be short for and/or an anagram?? Come on, somebody solve the riddle, I am dying to know :) I need to have it LOL

Mar
19
2016
Suzybee
Suzybee

Great article, I really enjoy reading your "ramblings."

This is easy, TWTIES has to be, hands down, Colors de Benetton Men by Benetton.

Last Christmas, my Dad had asked me if I could find another bottle of Benetton Essence of Man. Apparently, out of all his great collection, this is the one he got the most compliments on. Amazing, how the body chemistry marries into specific scents and the fragrance becomes a home run.

After much searching and not willing to spend $180 on ebay for a used bottle, I came upon what I thought might be comparable. What did I know? I've never even owned anything from Benetton except a few sweaters from the 80s.

I found this disgusting bottle at an older department store and no testers anywhere. What's worst, once you buy and open, it's yours for good.

Colors de Benetton Men reminds me of the creepy old man at church that loves to accost women to give them hugs and kisses, leaving the vile stench on your face, and distracting you from the service because all you want to do is go home and scrub the stink this old dog left on your cheek to mark his territory!!! UGH. GROSS. NEVER. AGAIN.

P.S. I doubt I will win, since it's late in the game (haha) but if I should be considered, please send TWTIES to someone else. My nose might curl up and die. lol

Mar
19
2016
Bbjr
Bbjr

I think twties is Bandit, although there are many others. However, Gres Cobochard seems to be getting the overwhelming nod here and I've never smelled that. Hmmm, I'll have to give that a try. Funny how curious I am to smell something repulsive.

Feb
17
2016
Augustarina
Augustarina

For me growing up in the 70s, it was Charlie. I had so many friends and workmates who lathered themselves in it. It's still a puzzle to me how different we all are, and since hating Charlie I have always wondered why we are all wired so differently. It actually makes NO sense to read reviews to see if you're going to like something! Even if that person does love something you love, it still doesn't mean you will like everything they like.

Feb
15
2016
Das Huffer
Das Huffer

Totally must be Cabochard Gres. I'm willing to bet no one in history has actually used an entire bottle. I remember smelling it as a kid, too, and being confused as to why someone would intentionally smell like this. That being said, I'm curious to revisit it now. Lord knows I've given a passing grade for a lot of other "freak" scents. ;)
As far as fragrance nemesis goes: Cinnabar. My mother used to wear it as a winter scent (alternating with White Linen for the warmer months). I recall when it finally god cold enough for her to wear it for the first time I always felt a certain feeling of dismay that there would now be several more months of it to endure. Maybe she just applied too much, but my memory of it would be somewhat akin to being held upside down, and someone pouring ammonia into your nose through a funnel.
...admittedly I'd be curious to re-smell that one now, too. Heh heh!

Feb
15
2016
catpud
catpud

I have never smelt anything so ghastly as 'Obsession' by Calvin klein, both the mens and womens versions.
It smells like old tights, stewed socks, lentil soup (which smells EXACTLY like sweaty armpits, and chopped onions which also emit a very pungent sweaty smell when raw and put in the fridge and taken out later), and rotting slippers when they get that old cabbage-like pong which other shoes don't get, only slippers do.
Oh, and not forgetting the eggy-like stench that you get in gutters and drains..........the white scummy run-off that floats across the pavement and you have to step over it, that's what i get from 'Obsession'

Feb
15
2016
coffeebee
coffeebee

TWTIES...I had to think on this one. I dislike plenty of fragrances, but there are only two that revolt me - Angel and Santal 33.

Angel. So loathed, so loved by many. It smells like a raspberry lollipop swiped through an ashtray, then dunked in acrid fryer grease. It has a sweet-sour dirty scalp smell.

Santal 33. Distinctly reminds me of the cedar chips that custodians used to pile on top of throw up from accidents in the hallways when I was in elementary school. With a side of dill pickle relish.

Feb
15
2016
Q80
Q80

If it's similar to Bandit then it's surely Gres Cabochard although i never smelled that Gres but i have smelled Bandit.

Bandit wasn't that bad although i feel the tuberose with the jasmine are overdose with some leather and tobacco, BUT... the dry down isn't good to be honest as it smells like the white buttery creamy sticky liquid that you can find at the edges of someone's mouth when they wake up first thing in the morning. but if you ask me about the TWTIES then there is a quite fair list..

Although i rarely dislike niche fragrances, but Let's See:

+Montecristo By Masque - smells like a dead sewers fur rat.

+Charogne By ELd'O - Smells like McDonald's public Toilets

+1805 by BeauFort London - smells like rivers fish, sea salt, mold, and steamed seaweed.

+Aziyade & Fougere Bengale by Parfum D'Empire - both smells like armpits of a guy who loves curry.

+Soir de Mer by Antonio Visconti - Smells like a fresh fish

+Dragon Tattoo By Ys-Uzac - smells like a sweaty junkie party girl & her body is full of tattoos, ah and she is in period

+Candour By Humiecki & Graef - smells like someone who filled up his stomach with milk and threw up - in short a milky creamy vomit.

Now the bulky headaches are:
+Black Afgano by Nasomatto - Insomnia at MAX
+Tuscan Leather by Tom Ford
+Tobacco Vanille by Tom Ford
+1 Million by Paco Rabanne - i want to bang my head against the wall from this one
+Invictus by Paco Rabanne
+Aventus by Creed
+Bleu de Chanel by Chanel - specially this one makes me want to vomit even if i don't have too
+Fierce by Abercrombie & Fitch

Now give me that sample :p

Feb
15
2016
stardust808
stardust808

Sunflowers by Elizabeth Arden is TWTIES. Unless I ever have the strange desire to smell like a urine drenched diaper that has been rotting in the sun for a few days this will be a very hard fragrance to top on my list of vile fumes. Just putrid!
How can I leave out Heaven Scent reform?! This time the urine is on filthy panties left in the trash permeating in a public restroom GAG! Another "gem" is Vickie Tiel Siren-rose scented powder used to powder a dirty bottom in an attempt to cover poor hygiene. Just gross.

Jan
31
2016
Scentmad
Scentmad

For me: Lou Lou. Detest it.

Jan
31
2016
miracleborgtech
miracleborgtech

I was one of the lucky winners of a sample of TWTIES! Thank you Dr. Harrison!!!! In solidarity (fist bump explosion!) I was eager to hate it too!

But. . . did I mention I love Bandit? And most leather chypres . . .

Well, this is kind of a friendlier Bandit cousin. Not as strong and sharp, but with a similar aroma to me. The first 10 minutes is a redolent leather surrounded by a soft floral cloud. The top notes are pungent, quickly receding into a soft lipstick/leather purse fragrance, with mild sillage. Hours later there is still a faint, pleasant spicy floral.

Overall it does smell vintage, only because this kind of formula for perfumes isn't designed often these days. You mentioned that you bought the EDP new version. After smelling this, although I would love to smell the vintage EDP, the new formulation is pretty good. My mother tracked me down to find out what I was wearing because she liked it so much.

Bandit, Aramis, et al. and now Cabochard (still need confirmation :)! . . . are all polarizing scents. Hate one, probably hate them all. And your reaction to TWTIES is hilarious to read! We have all had that feeling! I have a similar reaction to many celebrity scents, gasp, choke, sputter!!! And my brother hates anyone to wear Alien! Like the saying "beauty is in the eye of the beholder" - there are many scents beloved by some that are repugnant to others.

Esprit de corps make me want to dislike TWTIES! But all I can do is promise not to wear TWTIES or any of the others within nose range of you! Meanwhile, we all want to read more! We love reading about your experiences! It makes us feel a camaraderie in shared perfume adventures!

Jan
30
2016
Kittykat217
Kittykat217

The perfume of my childhood that I remember hating the smell of was Estee Lauder Private Collection. My Mom loved it, but it always gave me a headache. I wonder if I might like it now. As an adult I can say I dislike Viva La Juicy, it's so sickeningly sweet, I almost feel tat way about Flowerbomb... I detest Clinique Happy as well, for years now. Oh, and Estee Lauder Tuber rose Gardenia, and pleasures.

Jan
25
2016
Allen-at-home
Allen-at-home

Okay, but don't get mad because you asked. :-) Haute Voltige by L'Artisan literally smells like *feces to me (nice version of what I felt like saying).

Jan
25
2016
Melpo
Melpo

Based on the article, yes, I agree with the others who said this must be Cabochard Gres for women. It is French, it is for women, the name means stubborn, it's been around enough time and the listed ingredients would make one expect a leather-tobacco kind of scent. And it is compared to "Bandit".

Jan
25
2016
jedrzejowskia
jedrzejowskia

Haha, wouldn't like a sample since I'd probably hate it too!
Thanks for the fun article and comments.
Mine are:

The Foghorn in your nose: Alien
The Queezy hangover feeling: Volupte, Tresor
The Only Perfume I Can't wear but like on Others: Angel
All Elisabeth Arden scents
Everything that's supposed to smell "clean" and "fresh" but ends up smelling like cheap toilet soap, i.e yucky fresh florals.

Jan
25
2016
miniwidget
miniwidget

I dislike all forms of Shalimar, including vintage extrait which I am inclined to sell on ebay. Smells like bug spray to me. I feel like I am the only one in the world who hates it.

Jan
24
2016
Englishman
Englishman

The worst fragrance I have had in my hands, as of late, is Frederic Malle's Portrait of a Lady.

I had to force my woman not to wash off that foul stench so that I could appraise it over a decent time frame.

Rose and incense are two notes I sincerely detest, and that's Portrait of a Lady in a nutshell.

I do not want to spend time with that lady in the portrait; that lady who has so inconsiderately fumigated herself with a thousand cheap joss sticks.

Jan
24
2016
piahellgren
piahellgren

I couldn´t say which one it is. Gabochard isn´t that vile to me, at all. My worst, I think, are:

3. Sun by Jil Sander - ouch, what a cloying, nasty, clumsy perfume
2. Killer Queen by Katy Perry - I dislike the ones it has taken inspiration from too, but at least they are quality (LVEB, Flowerbomb). Killer Queen smells like sweet barf.
3. Parfum de Peau by Montana - actually above article could VERY well be describing it... It´s just reeking from ashes, sour body, and gasoline

Fun article, by the way!

Jan
18
2016
naomi.scott
naomi.scott

I am going to be very unpopular, but my perfume nemesis is Guerlain's La petite robe noir. It is the only perfume that I truly hate.

The bottle description definitely sounds like Gres Cabochard.

Jan
18
2016
anamalia
anamalia

mine would be lancome - tresor, because my art teacher (life drawing) used to wear it in such generous amounts that it would stink up the whole room (which was during winter, and she insisted on having multiple heaters in the room on high, making it unbearably stuffy), and the idea of the scent mingling around the naked bodies of the old creepy male life model made me nauseous.

Jan
18
2016
june7rose
june7rose

Very entertaining article. Jicky maybe? Almost all the classic old fashioned "narcotic florals" of the 20s-50s are TWTIES for me. I wish I could appreciate them more, but they all smell like something that passed out of an old woman to me.

Jan
17
2016
canadianpetite
canadianpetite

My TWTies: Ivoire de Balmain
No matter what season, time of day or humidity level, this just plain stinks on me. Reminds me of cumin or crushed marigold.

Curious about Cabochard Gres as my sis-in-law mentioned once that she loved this when it was more available. I laughed at your enclosed pic and description on first sniff of your TWTies.

Jan
17
2016
aeriol.chapito
aeriol.chapito

I don't know about the TWTIES , but my fragrance nemesis was,and still is, Oud Malaki by Chopard. I am ok with Oud, but this one manages to smell like pure cattle dung+herbs, on my skin AND from the bottle... I tried to keep it on as long as I could, but it was so revolting I had to wash it off.
:'(

Jan
17
2016
verdigris
verdigris

Tam, you are absolutely brilliant-I had never thought to deploy scent as a deterent to creeps but nature bears it out -skunks use it as defense so why shouldn't humans! Love your post!

Jan
17
2016
Tam
Tam

Yep - I'm going with the flow and think this is Cabochard though personally I love that smelly old lady. She has also managed to successfully repel the unwanted attentions I've been getting from a deviant creep on the bus home in the evening. However, my TWITIES was definitely True Star by Tommy Hilfiger. I had to spray it as it was gifted to me. Something like wet dog and cardboard unless the bottle had turned..

Jan
17
2016
Planet_X
Planet_X

My guess is that its Jolie Madame Balmain. I like it though:)
But simply according descriptions: oily - first of all. Bitter, harsh - yes))
Was it Jolie Madame then?.....

Other things that fit descriptions are Azuree Pure Lauder and Antilope Weil. Again, I love Antilope, yet it gave such migraines I sold it within a month.

P.S. Laughed from images and graphics that framed the article, was naughty to charge mother with guilt though, after sooooo many years... What an emotional scar and impact! lol

Jan
17
2016
militanttihintti
militanttihintti

I'd love to have a bottle of Gabochard! I quite like it.

Jan
16
2016
unregistered
unregistered

I had a vintage mini of Cabochard; I'd thought it had gone off, but apparently there was some original awfulness of which I wasn't aware. Wet tobacco ashes and rancid fat come to mind.

As for other bad scents, context is everything. I'd owned and loved Angel until I had motion sickness on a hot, crowded bus with someone doused in the stuff. It's kind of like food poisoning that way, a bad experience can forever turn you off something you used to enjoy.

However, some I've found awful are that Armani Privè Cuir Amethyste and Balmain Ambre Gris. Speaking of Balmain, I recall another awful vintage mini of Miss Balmain that was just as choking as the Cabochard.

Then there's the strange example of the awful scent you grow to love: my example is Womanity. The sprayer on the tester was set to "stream" rather than "spray." A finer application and it was divine.

I enjoy any perfume, even ones I don't like on myself, worn by others as long as they're not trying to cover up for a lack of personal hygiene and if I'm not trapped in a small, enclosed space with many clashing odors going on simultaneously. It's nice to smell something good wafting by.

Jan
12
2016
Bads
Bads

Undoubtedly Gres Cabochard, even before I hit the Bandit pic I had my suspicions. I rather like it! Not as well as Bandit, but it has its charms. No need for a decant, I actually got my wife a bottle of the EDP as a stocking stuffer for Christmas. She seems amenable to it but not super excited by it. She did use it as a room spray one day, we agreed that that might not be the best use for it, hahaha.

Jan
11
2016
mummeli
mummeli

My guess would be Cabochard by Gres! I love that fragrance.

Jan
11
2016
ellebelle84
ellebelle84

Anything with cedar makes me smell like horses- more specifically manure. Patchouli is absolutely disgusting. Hate BBW Japanese Cherry Blossom, Moonlight Path, Madagascar Vanilla (smells like gasoline!). I don't like anything by Elizabeth Taylor. Chanel Number 5 smells terrible as do Aroma Elixir and Youth Dew by Clinique- yuck. Anything dirty, smoky, leather, animalistic, powerhouse floral are all hideous notes to me. I get awful headaches from sharp aldehydes, to strong soap or animal notes, to intense 80s scents ughhhhh.

Jan
11
2016
scentdeman
scentdeman

Okay, admittedly, I did not read every post. But for the love of fragrance, did not one person report as their "worst smell ever" Jungle Gardenia by Tuvache???
You know, the stuff Bob Barker hawked for decades on The Price is Right as a fabulous prize?
I sniffed it once and nearly threw my stomach contents on the spot! The next time, fearful of that vividly-remembered response, I made sure there was nothing in my stomach--and still that urge reared it's ugly head. It's not likely to be TWTIES, since I doubt that it's French, but huweh! It rates a top 3 on the WSE list!

Jan
11
2016
luxurylover
luxurylover

For me, the worst 2 scents I have ever smelled:

Blue Grass by Elizabeth Arden - absolutely revolting, it gives me nausea
Womanity -Thierry Mugler - I ignore what happened to Mr. Mugler with this one...

Jan
11
2016
Jet Adore
Jet Adore

Yep, it's Gres Cabochard. No decant necessary.

Jan
10
2016
calina
calina

I'm surprised no one mentioned Secretion Magnifique aka the smell of death! It's one of those ones that you have a conquer initially before you can enjoy it. I actually do own a bottle and am known to indulge whenever I'm in a daring mood. Certainly not one to buy on a whim.

I do agree with Joop! Homme, Givenchy Pi. These are strong synthetic headache messes through and through.

I would also add Revlon's Fire and Ice (both man and woman), Asja by Fendi, Lou Lou and Eden by Cacharel

Jan
10
2016
Weihan
Weihan

The WORST thing imaginable for the refined nose is anything that smells of CILANTRO - the devil's private weed.

Jan
10
2016
genevieves
genevieves

Mine is definitely L'eau d'Issey...and the worst thing is it lasts forever! I kept smelling vomit on my wrist while trying to sleep.

Jan
10
2016
Betsywoolbright
Betsywoolbright

Definitely Cabochard. The name means "stubborn."

Jan
10
2016
greentoad
greentoad

Definitely Cabochard - based on notes you expected; and comparison with Bandit; 55 years in production is also quite accurate. It's strangely stinking and attractive at the same time. I like it.

Jan
09
2016
reborn
reborn

Well ..there are perfumes which i do not like,or not like a lot,but i will never ever forget my expirience with Lush Lust.Even now,only thinking about it,i am getting sick and i wanna puke.If i want to kill myself one day i will definatelly buy a bottle,i will close my self with it in a room and this will be the end for me.This is a devil in a bottle.I almosyt died in the mall when i tried it.And i couldnt wash it off so many hours.bbbrrrrrr i do not want to think about it...Blalalalalhhhhhhhhhhhh

Jan
09
2016
LadyPilot
LadyPilot

Your description of TWTIES perfectly fits the way "Cabotine" Gres smells. "Bitter, oily, harsh..." I'd say it smells like sweat and urine with some cheap, gone soap, I'd be ashamed to wear it as everybody would probably think I forgot to wash myself or to use a deo, or that I have serious urological problems... Sorry, but after almost a year of having it, testing it, mixing it with a lot of other stuff and giving it the "umpteenth" chance, there's no improvement!!! In fact, it's getting worse with every try! And I've known this scent for over 15 years and ALWAYS I've got that awful impression of it...:( On anybody who'd use it, including myself. It is My TWTIES for sure.

But was "Cabotine" available in your childhood?... :-/

It it's not the one, I'd vote for Bourjois Soir de Paris, also the good old Polish "Pani Walewska" would do;P

Jan
09
2016
danusianusia
danusianusia

Avon Far Away is the worst one for me

Jan
09
2016
SexyJasmine
SexyJasmine

I know I'm late to the party but what a great read! Ok so the worst thing I've ever smelled....so many but I'll narrow it down to a few:

CK One - Calvin Klein (pregnancy ruined this one)
Eternity - Calvin Klein (friend wore waaay too much)
Red Door- Elizabeth Arden (too strong)
Demeters Pipe Tobacco (if you like smelling like an ashtray)

Jan
08
2016
ginawadsworth
ginawadsworth

Wonderful read ....

My personal hates are Sunflowers by Arden and Liberte by Cacharal.

In fact Cacharal and I clash horribly which I find so sad mostly because I fear I am missing out on something wonderful.

My personal favourite perfume is pre-reformulation Aromatics Elixir which is always listed on the "hate it" list.

Just goes to show how personal and subjective perfume really is.

Jan
08
2016
Tara Fiouzi
Tara Fiouzi

For me Chanel No. 5 is the worst I have ever smelled, I don't know why so many people wear it, maybe it makes them feel that they look as good as Marilyn Monroe, who knows!

Jan
08
2016
Marie69
Marie69

Cabochard is my... pig headed ....signature scent. Anyone who has any form of Cabochard, let us trade..One woman´s junk is another woman´s----or man´s...treasure....

Jan
08
2016
veda
veda

Which is it, which is it??
Please dear Marlen tell us!!Oh, and I don't want a decant, I own a bottle with the current formula.

Jan
08
2016
Beach Girl
Beach Girl

Surely it's not Cabochard! Oh darn, it is isn't it? The mule and the beach scene photos just gave it away. That's one of my favorite fragrances ever. Has the correct perfume been revealed yet?

Jan
08
2016
ami.alger
ami.alger

My TWTIES? Honestly? It's J'Adore.

On me, it turns into this insanely strident floral that just won't stop shrieking like a mad wife in the attic. Pretty sure it's a body chemistry thing, as I like plenty of other florals, and I've never recoiled from it on anyone else. Though, I will admit, I've never had the guts to ask for the name of a scent I hate on another person. :D

Jan
07
2016
nettoyant
nettoyant

Madammim's is Chanel 5! Please PM me if you do tell us what it is because I'll forget to stop back here XD

Jan
07
2016
Macassar
Macassar

Joop ! Homme ...two days of headaches for two seconds sniffing it...

Jan
07
2016
Hoolly
Hoolly

I can't stand Chanel No 5.,Avon Far away, Avon Celebre, Etro Messe de Minuit.. And what about Mugler's Womainty? No one has mentioned this strange uncomfortable smell yet!

Jan
07
2016
Correctandcreate
Correctandcreate

Love reading your reviews!

My twties:
White Diamonds by Elizabeth Taylor. Not a fan of aldehydic
Fancy nights by Jessica Simpson. Way too much patchouli
Sexual by Michael Germain. Smells like my kindergarten teacher. I asked her, turns out it is her scent. Like a half melted sucker forgotten about in the sun.
Curious by Britney Spears. Although not offensive, it smells like public washroom soap.
I'm done! phew, got that off my chest.

Jan
06
2016
Eicher
Eicher

Totally agree with themattsky: Avon Far away. Horrible smell. Gives me strong headache.

Jan
06
2016
themattsky
themattsky

My TWTIES is Avon's Far Away. The funny thing is I've smelled it in every single place I've lived. I don't understand its popularity

Jan
06
2016
emt1986
emt1986

Ok, so if you've been struggling to appreciate Cabochard, try putting it on just before sex. It turned weirdly erotic for me once I started getting excited.

Jan
06
2016
drugstore classics
drugstore classics

OH, this is indeed a well written and passionate article! Not entering, as I have already won something recently and because I know and adore the hilariously punchy culprit.... Cabochard! What I want to sample someday is BANDIT, hehe. ;)

How utterly refreshing to read an articulate and passionate article on the negative side. Not that a full diet of negativity is what we need ( as you've indicated yourself, Marlen! ) but only that we all need a break from complete perfume adoration from time to time. I myself often wince at the perfume counter, and this is what started my own perfume journey. The attempt to find beautiful in a sea of ugly!

As for HATED perfume, I think the most horrible things I have ever smelled would be any of the aquatics, certain strident white musks, and ROYAL SECRET. Sadly! I am hoping that I gave this latter, respected classic too quick a dismissal, and I actually live in hope of acquiring another sample someday to test out my theory. :D But at the time it smelled to me of musty talcum powder, sadly mixed with the smell of unsanitary nursing home...... Eau de Revolting. But that was several perfume light years ago. Oh may it not be so now!

Jan
06
2016
Snowflake_007
Snowflake_007

This article literally had me chuckling all the way through. I find it funny how the scents we absolutely adore seem to fade rather quickly (I favour Rose, Jasmine and Tuberose), while TWTIES seem to cling to your skin even after scrubbing it raw.

As a fragrance addict myself, I find myself drawn to many different types of fragrances, but I'm also quite neutral to many, and yes - then there are those that make me want to hack my own arm off just to get away from the stench.

Some of my TWTIES are:
Youth Dew by Estee Lauder
Aromatics Elixir by Clinique (reminds me of burnt bushes)
Green Tea & Cherry Blossom by Elizabeth Arden (it turns into a horrifying cat-pee stench that sticks for hours)
Hypnotic Poison by Dior (instand headache - smells like hangover)

What's good for the goose, is not good for the gander after all, right?

Thanks for a well written article!

Jan
06
2016
KittyCute
KittyCute

Lol. :) Anything older like "Monsieur" or "Crescendo" by Lanvin,,,

Jan
05
2016
Jillita
Jillita

I just wanted to add I LOVED this editorial and all the responses.

I smelled the Cabochard Gres last year and thought I'd died and gone to hell.

(With apologies to those for whom the frag works.)

The worst for me is Cacharel Lou Lou: Ripe plums and violent violet (preponderance of purple notes), plus a nice soupcon of acetone and a notable drydown of smegma.

Thanks for the topic!

Jan
05
2016
Captain-Rol
Captain-Rol

Talking about "Bal a Versailles" by Jean Desprez?!?... Lol Great article. Interesting.

Jan
05
2016
mi55anthr0py
mi55anthr0py

Hilarious article, Dr. Harrison! I don't need a decant of Cabochard (if it's indeed your TWTIES), as I've already sampled it and can't stand it. I'd say that the majority of commercially-available fragrances are gag-worthy for me, unfortunately; some of TWTIES include Ralph Lauren's Polo, ELdO's Secretions Magnifiques, and Robert Piguet's Fracas, though they're by no means the *absolute* worst I've smelled...

OT: I think MadMadamMimm's TWTIES is Chanel No. 5.

Thanks for the fun! :D

Jan
05
2016
jennifer60656
jennifer60656

Every time I go about sniffing the newer celeb-u-swills and designer messes I am frequently frightened - they all seem to smell the same so I can't name any one by name and I walk out of Ulta looking like the world is going to end. Otherwise, TWITIES I have been unfortuante to have met include Lolita Lempicka (the first one - love the bottle though), Secretions Magnifique (chemical warfare - so bad you have to love it), Womanity (Yikes!), Jade East (Sleazy guy you can't seem to get rid of), and oh yes - Acqua di Gio - headache in a bottle. A family friend wears this all the time and it's like an old jar of Noxema that won't settle down - just lasts and lasts, it makes me want to scream! Vile mess!

I really want to know what the TWITIES is in the article! I must smell it!

Jan
05
2016
fubar1963
fubar1963

I wouldn't be surprised if TWTIES was Chanel No 5. Sorry all, but that is some awful smelling stuff. I've never understood the hyperbole over that perfume.

Jan
05
2016
dormir6
dormir6

There is Avon Faraway. It makes me vomit. Literally. I can understand why others love it , but it makes my stomach turn.
And the worst of all is Rihanna Rebelle. It is really a nigthmare. It is a smell of a horror house. Murder of children. Sticky stains of jam and blood on the wooden panel. Dead little babies in used rugs. ( I am sorry ,but this is a vision I can see when I get a sniff of this sadness. Plastic, ruined dolls with one eye, rusty cars. Really terrible. I am scared of this fume!!!!

Jan
05
2016
Silk Flower
Silk Flower

For me, TWTIES is 100% Onda (Vero Profumo). I almost died when I sampled it. It smells like death and sweat and dirty laundry, clogged pipes and greasy plates altogether.

Jan
05
2016
Sharyl
Sharyl

Cabochard! Oh, can I please get some of that stinky bottle of yours! :)

Jan
05
2016
Calandrona
Calandrona

Cabochard, Grès. Yes it is stinky and it does not want to be everybody's darling and I love it! And I am fully aware that most of my favourite fragrances might be love-hate, i.e., loved by a minority including me and hated by many and perceived as plain stinky (Cabochard), musty (Shalimar), funky (Paloma Picasso), elderly lady (Miss Dior, the original one), and because I am stubborn ("cabochard") I don't care what the rest of the world thinks and enjoy the stinky juice. There are about 300 comments before me, so alas, I am probably much too late for one of those decants...?

My TWTIES:
3rd place: Cool Water, what's it called, aquatic, ozonic? Anyway this and any other similar fragrance. I thought this is bad enough, but recently tried...
...2nd place: Spellbound, sickening sweet almost to the point of vomiting.
But the Winner is: Dita von Teese, Erotique. A horrible chemical smell. Not paint thinner or turpentine; no it reminds me of one building at work where they painted and put in new pvc floors, and for months it had that nauseating, very unhealthy, poisonous plastic-glue-paint smell. Not even remotely erotical. Makes me think of a toxic-waste container.

Jan
05
2016
Nil3
Nil3

No, I believe that madam mim 's TWTIES is unfortunately my beloved Narciso . The milky white bottle . I sent her a private message , she still hasn't answered . Me and my friend spent 30 minutes guessing last night . Was lots of fun .

But I think , I think I nailed it . I'm waiting ......;)


edit: didnt nail it AT ALL!!!!!

It was Chanel no.5.

Jan
05
2016
Asinya
Asinya

Worst scent ever?
Tom Ford - Black Orchid. No competition.

Unwashed balls dipped in Piña Colada. It's truly monstrous. I have no other words - nor is it, to my mind, worthy of them.

Jan
05
2016
logicmuppet
logicmuppet

TWTIES: Perry Ellis 360o

It's lovely for about 5 seconds, and then turns into a moldy dishrag. It's one of the few that I can't even tolerate on other people. Things like the infamous Cabochard play nice on me, but for some reason that Perry Ellis one is just "ugh."

Jan
05
2016
prettywhitestars
prettywhitestars

Loved this article! It made me laugh so much, and goes to show that even the most experienced noses have their pet perfume hates. Just when you thought perfume equality existed...

The following perfumes rate highly on my 'monstrous and migraine-inducing' scale:

- YSL's Rive Gauche
- Clinique's Aromatics Elixir
- Robert Piguet's Bandit

Apologies to anyone who loves these, but for me they induce hate and horror. Whenever I smell these, I imagine old rich women, the wrinkles on their faces heavy with powder, layers and layers of unwashed wool and furs heaving with the scents of old petals and decaying wooden logs. Run away! Run away!

Jan
05
2016
meissie1982
meissie1982

I own a bottle of Cabochard by Gres and oh I hate it, on my skin and in the bottle/cap. I just can't do it...
The smell to my nose is like licking a wet ashtray.

Coolwater by Davidoff is also a big NO for me, whenever I smell it on a person I feel sick. To my nose it's like a cheap airfreshner.

Jan
05
2016
YunitaArien
YunitaArien

Juicy couture peace love juicy. Disgusting

Jan
05
2016
Sveltekittie
Sveltekittie

TWTIES, hands down Thierry Mugler's Womanity. Makes me nauseous almost instantly. The most stomach churning concoction I've ever encountered. If I smell this on anyone, I am running, not walking, in the opposite direction. Absolutely foul.

Jan
05
2016
Vivavoice
Vivavoice

Thanks for my first belly laugh of the 2016 Marlen. Your horror filled review had me rolling and spluttering. So funny! As I read the responses many think its Cabochard. Well as co-incidence would have it, just before new year, I went to ebay and ordered a slightly used Cabochard as part of my current vintage 'fume fascination.

It was a steal price wise. Plus, a cute 3ml bottle of its purported baby sister Cabotine, was part of the deal. Its in the post as I write and I am almost panting with anticipation because both were blind bought. My faith is great, but I think my intuition is better. Will update when I have sniffed.

This is my first post on this fabulous site. If you never hear from me again it might be because Marlen was right after all. I love how polarising some smells can be. Thanks for the passion people! x

Jan
04
2016
wesleyhclark
wesleyhclark

Joop! pour homme

Jan
04
2016
odie
odie

Uggh, I consider Cabochard "Gres" one of TWTIES, hmm, in that hexagonal bottle filled with the bitter liquid, hatched full of boasting plots of leather or what is it, tarragon? More like a strained boiled potion of grass. No tropical coconut here, just an odd plasticky green helpless stinker forcing me to hold down a total gag....I must say I felt myself shake inwardly when I smelled it.

Thank God for a sampler, otherwise I would have cried in horror if I blind bought this blot in perfume history. Shall it be in my olfactory arsenal, never. I am no full of nonsense perfume addict that boasts of sniffing something that really isn't there. I am still young in my perfume experience but this evil liquid takes the barf crown....totally.

Jan
04
2016
lanachristine
lanachristine

So funny that some have mentioned Tabu. It is definitely one of TWTIES! But my grandma wears it to this day and I can't imagine her wearing anything else.

Jan
04
2016
Senzadite
Senzadite

I have a few...

Avon´s Imari (Can´t stand it)

Armand Dupree (A very popular cologne for women in México)

And im very sorry for the people that worship this but:

Chanel No. 5 is a nightmare for me.

Jan
04
2016
SoheePark
SoheePark

It's still haunting my dreams, it gives me nightmares. My sister used to spray the toilet when it smelled like poo but it only made it worse. (Yes it smella worse than poo)
That perfume is: Lancome Tresor (the original )

Jan
04
2016
La DameDeNoir
La DameDeNoir

Let's me think...I think the worst thing I have ever smelled, was a perfume extract called Peau d'Espagne (Spanish Leather), by Gal, a Spanish classic perfumist house, now dissapeared. It came as a part of a limited edition (which is not here in the Fragrantica database), consisting in a beautiful vintage, Art Nouveau style box which contained three scents: Violeta (Violet), Muguet (Lilly of the Valley) and Peau d'Espagne. While the Violet and the Lilly of the Valley were fine (as many other Gal perfumes), the Spanish Leather was something really horrid. Something that I cannot describe. Stinky. Some sort of dirty water, long time infused with sweat and dead animals. It was really strong, although, curiously enough, not so disgusting smelled right from the bottle. Well, perhaps it would become better when it will dry, I thought. Terrible mistake,I put some drops on, and I had to go direct to the shower.

A real pity, because I really wanted to like it, it was a limited edition of a vintage perfume, and, as I say, the boxes and bottles were lovely.


Varón Dandy (originaly made by Parera, another classic Spanish brand) is another firm candidate for the title of Worst Perfume Ever. Perhaps it was gorgeous when it was launched for the first time in the 30's, but today is something very cheap, strong and synthetic. The classic smell of the Retired Men Club. Hideous. Decrepit. Rancid. The male version of the Bette Davies character in the film What happened to Baby Jane.

White Musk from The Body Shop is another perfume that I cannot bear, I cannot understand the huge success of this thing. Worst smelling and cheapest musk perfume ever. A mixture of burnt plastic and dirty cowshed.


And most of the designer perfumes of our days: the entire Nina Ricci range (but L'air du temps), the entire range of Lolita Lempicka (pity, the flacons are gorgeous), the entire range of Paco Rabanne, all the perfumes of Marc Jacobs, Lancôme La Vie Est Belle, almost all the perfumes from Thierry Mugler...

Jan
04
2016
OTA Mom
OTA Mom

My fragrance nemesis, hands down... years ago, I once had a friend who decided her fortune lay in selling lots of Mary Kay cosmetics, mostly to her friends. She conned me into a blind buy of MK "Journey", which we both considered apropos, as I was embarking on a car trip with extended family across the country. I doused myself in this stink-fest on the morning of our departure, then was kicked out of the car by my aunt after she had a gag reaction to the fragrance, which was actually quite awful after the top notes wore off, and had everyone complaining. I spent an hour in a disgusting truck stop bathroom in Arkansas, trying to scrub it off my skin. MK actually refunded my money, to their credit, but now I never apply fragrance before travel. Still living it down.

Jan
04
2016
Angela Agiannidou
Angela Agiannidou

There is another stinker: lattaffa Raghba.

Jan
04
2016
verdigris
verdigris

Forgot to add that my earliest olfactory maiming was the result of overexposure to English Leather. Seems like every male person back in the day wore this stuff to choking excess...or maybe it was just that powerful. To this very moment I have trouble with heavy leather scents although actual leather registers in the pleasant zone to my nose. Must have been the rest of what was/is (God, I hope this stuff isn't still around) in there.
This article and the responses to it have been so funny that I will hate to see them go away. Not sure what that means...maybe my humor just runs to dark or maybe we feel freer poking fun at things we don't like... but whatever the case, more please! I wouldn't doubt that this funny article set some sort of a record for responses. Great job Dr. Marlen and Fragranticans!

Jan
04
2016
ms. m
ms. m

Thank you for this hilarious article and for feeling safe enough with this community to share what was clearly a traumatic experience for you. I can offer no speculation regarding your olfactory nemesis, as I find myself stricken with second-hand PTSD from reading your review and must now seek therapy. :)

My own TWTIES was Havana Vanille by L'Artisan, beloved by many (clearly a deal with the Devil). It contains the kind of rotting corpse smell that brings nightmares of death and dismemberment. The bottle was my first blind buy, and I had a difficult time getting rid of it. Like the subject of that old Phil Harris song, The Thing, it frightened and revulsed everyone I offered it to. I eventually managed to swap it away, but I still get queasy just thinking about it.

Jan
04
2016
Nil3
Nil3

Until now it's Cerutti 1881,Dolce Vita by Dior AND Ralph by Ralph Lauren for women . They all have that 'sting' .

Jan
04
2016
milkyway
milkyway

I cant imagine what can it be...will you please disclose it?..very curious now =)

Jan
04
2016
gypsy parfumista
gypsy parfumista

55 years later? Those notes, that flaçon, and such associations? French?? MY first thought was (even before reading any member replies) was also indeed Cabochard de GRES. A few other crossed my mind Habanita was one; until the hexagonal bottle was revealed...

Excellent article, as always, Dr. Marlen!!

TWTIES, as far as fragrances go, is (I believe) a FiFi award winner for luxury men's brand limited doors. It was the premiere scent for this creative giant with an equally provocative ad campaign. Each and every successive fragrant vision, including the eau de perfume version of TWTIES, enthralled and enraptured me delivering on longevity, quality and sillage and my collection raw s my wallet winces and my credit cards whined. This inaugural eew de toilette; despite mad popularity across the fragrant online fellowship, still reeks to me of dank & rotten wood glistening with a thick veneer of lemon furniture polish!!

Please DO enter me in the decant draw. I have a vintage bottle (late 80s or early 90's) of EDT and a 50th anniversary edition c. 2010 and would love to see how your bottle (late aughties I'm guessing) compares funk to funk, stank to stank.

So glad Addicted is back!!

WEAK STOMACH SPOILER: gross and nasty details blow

TWTIES, as far as worst EVER, was when I worked on a honeydipper truck. Honeydipper is the perfect example of a euphemism. It is a big loud nasty truck with hoses that drain septic tanks, slaughterhouse tanks and portable toilets at events. My first morning our first call at 7 am was an abattoir tank in mid-August full of 2,400 gallons (9600 litres) of blood. Now not just blood, mind you, but clots the size of melons bobbed up and down in a fetid maroon sea. As every so often pieces of fat, iridescent with unknown slime, collided with wafts of death as they rise in metallic vapors so intense they tighten the throat. I have an iron stomach, always hate and still do. IF there had bee anything in my stomach, even Java, that morning I would have projectile vomited. Seeing various stages of the common blowfly, from squirming maggot through hairy pupa to oversized aggressive adult, surviving and thriving on these excessive byproducts of human gluttony made me reconsider being a carnivore. Six months later, I went back to school and burned my old work clothes.

Just suffice it to say, many hate on Secretions Magnifiquè by ELdO, citing its unpleasant metallic (yes, even morguelike) blood accord. SM is IMHO a work of art... but smells NOTHING like blood, other than the metallic edge orris adds and more like wild abandon and hot sex in a flowerbed by a temperate seacoast, than a morgue or abattoir.

Jan
03
2015
Mary-Jayne
Mary-Jayne

I think your TWTIES is Cabochard.

My TWTIES (in the perfume world of course, because the real world holds some really bad smells. The kind that will haunt you, that will whisper a ghost up your nostrils suddenly out of the blue when least expected, the things that can never be unsmelled) would be:

* Piguet Bandit - which was acrid on me, oh god it was bad, I am an ex smoker, and it smelled like that awful smell when you empty the ashtray and get a bit of stale ash on your sleeve or something, mixed with some dreadful chemically treated
"pleather" (fake leather), mixed with stale sweat, oh I won't go on, it'll be someones signature and they'll get upset but it was so so bad on me.

* Paloma Picasso Paloma Picasso - smelled like, um, well, like a heavily used vagina on a hot day, wearing polyester pants. Smoking a cigarette. In an 1980's Ford Escort.

* Nicolai Maharanih (I think, or maharajah.) - much like PPPP above, except this overworked, overheated and overdue for a wash ladygarden was having a glass of orange juice with its cigarette.

* Lancome La Vie Est Belle - Makes me feel physically sick. as do many of the other smell alikes in the genre. This one in particular though, I was unsure initially. But then I wore it a few times and each time was sick or almost sick. so, no. not for me. sadly it and its kin are ubiquitous in certain demographics and thus can be hard to avoid at times.

But the absolute WTIES was HdP Ambrarem. Absolutely hideous, dear god I am shuddering at the very thought of it. No no and no again.

sorry guys, hope no one is offended, it is just my opinion of things I tried on me. I know things smell different to and on different people. I am sure at least one person will have said one of my favourites is their TWTIES. So may comments to read through! Mwah!

Jan
03
2015
MadMadamMimm
MadMadamMimm

I daren't say the name of my own TWTIES, but I'm sure you will guess it if I mention that it is perhaps the most iconic perfume of the 20th and perhaps any century. It is in every Sephora, Ulta, and department store in the world. While I sniff it every time I go to one, I have never been able to bring myself to actually put it on my own skin, as the smells we hate are the ones that cling most resolutely to our skin. This perfume smells, in the bottle, like used panties one has tried to "refresh" with baby powder to get another day out of them. My understanding from reviews is that when worn, it simply smells like an elegant lady in a cashmere sweater (in unclean underpants, perhaps?).

But the truth is, I could still fall in love with it. I hated Shalimar until I finally tried it on my skin, and now I love it. And here is the weird thing about perfume...so far, I have actually never hated a perfume that someone else was wearing, even ones that I hate on myself.

If you have guessed the identity of TWTIES, and you are offended, please don't be. I am a Fracas woman, and PLENTY of people hate my perfume. To each their own. :)

Jan
03
2015
ChrisInBrooklyn
ChrisInBrooklyn

I'm sure this is Cabochard, of which you speak, and my vintage mini is super divine!!! I can't comment on the recent formulations, and as a fragrance with such a long history and likely various owners of Parfums Gres over the years, the consistency of the formula and quality are, I'm sure, dubious to put it mildly... BTW my TWTIES: is the repulsive 'Red Door' by E. Arden, the lamentable Liz Claiborne and sinister Sonia Rykiel MAN (green bottle)... :-)

Jan
03
2015
hellovascent
hellovascent

Oh, I completely forgot to mention D & S Durga's Burning Barbershop. And I love their Indian Childhood.

EDIT: After having read this article and all the comments I bought a vintage coffret (probably from the seventies) including a soap, an extrait and an EdC of Cabochard. Even though the headnotes are off, this is a truly intriguing scent.

The one Cabochard EdC I already own which I called not so bad is a reformulation I bought for a song. This doesn't compare to the spicy and full blown original, which is simply wonderful.

Of course, when you think smelling like something very sweet you can eat is sexy, you won't be happy with Cabochard.

Jan
03
2015
hellovascent
hellovascent

Now it took me some time to realize that this was a riddle. My worst experiences were all smoky scents, like Calé Fragranze d'Autore's Preludio d'Oriente which made me smell like an ashtray full of cigarette stubs.
The other one was something by Liquides Imaginaires: after application I smelled like smoked ham. Taking into account that I am just another Shalimar aficionada and that I do have difficulties with leather chypres, I must say that Cabochard is not that bad.

Jan
03
2015
curlykitty8
curlykitty8

Why is everyone hating on Cabochard? Have you perhaps smelled some horribly old and tainted version or a sad reformulation?
I remember it as a lovely chypre, of course, emblematic of its time and genre.
Now if I really want to be sick and induce a migraine ridden with nausea and suicidal thoughts, Vanderbilt will do it for me.
A tincture of all the worst combined notes ever, rasping and horrific. The 80's had some big, shoulder padded fragrances but this was beyond strong, it was poison...and I don't mean Dior.
I would add that it has always mystified me how Bandit or Habanita ever reached iconic status. Perhaps those Flappers overdid the bathtub gin and filterless Lucky Strikes!

Jan
03
2015
Makaveli8
Makaveli8

This article reminds me of my journey to attempt to like and find that missing "something" of my TWTIES.

As a very young boy, I started to appreciate the effects that a fragrance had in me and others around me so I began to discover the world of fragrances. My mother used to wear Dolce Vita by Christian Dior, and I loved that vanilla-cinnamon trail that hovered around our house, hence my love for sweet fragrances. Everytime she went to any fragrance store to buy another bottle or smell something new, I followed her and, there, one beautiful day, I tried something that always stood in the most apreciated fragrances list, something that I found to be the most disgusting perfume ever, something that ruined my day as it somehow glued itself to my hand for the entire day! Against all odds, I didn't like one of the most famous perfumes in the world... Recently, after some years of discovering notes and a lot of perfume smelling, I thought I could, once again, try some of those perfumes I disliked as kid and start to appreciate them. And I was right for all of them, but one. Yes, my TWTIES made me "argh" one more time. Curiously it also contains oakmoss, vetiver and aldehydes.
My TWTIES is Chanel Nº5, and I think I'll never grow to like it.

Also, as a lover of Shalimar by Guerlain, I find your story to be just like mine and I'm very curious to find out what your TWTIES is.

Jan
03
2015
Kateri81
Kateri81

The worst for me is Dior's Fahrenheit since I was 9. I remember much later, when I used to work in Hilton Prague, there was a bellboy who wore it. And who's ever been in this hotel, knows that there is a giant lobby. And I swear I could smell him the very second he entered it.

Jan
03
2015
rebzgravsten
rebzgravsten

My fragrant nemesis is not a scent I have the name of, unfortunately (if I had, then I could avoid it t all costs!). It's a scent I've only smelled in two places so far, the first time at an old job where one of the ladies I worked with used to top up her scent in the afternoons. It smells like (pardon my language) when you drank what feels like all the alcohol in the world the night before, wake up either very hung over or probably still drunk, and take a disgusting hangover dump.
It smells exactly like that, but with some red currant thrown in aswell. Horrible!

Jan
03
2015
Synthaesthetic
Synthaesthetic

Angela Agiannidou - I really wanted to like Full Incense and I hope I can some day. I believe it must be great on others. But I just put some on again, and nope. I'll keep trying. Even my all-time favourite Vol de Nuit took time to love.

But then I like Drakkar Noir and I'm coming around to Charlie, so there's no accounting for my taste. ;)

Jan
03
2015
Angela Agiannidou
Angela Agiannidou

"........just wait and see what I will do to your nose....". Oh I do like a macho man.... Another stinker:'Giorgio Beverly hills', divine on mum, stunk no end on me...

Jan
03
2015
Angela Agiannidou
Angela Agiannidou

Synthaesthetic watch it! FULL MONTALE is my all time favourite!!!!!! (along ELIXIR, AVIGNON, CARDINAL....,)yeah man
...

Jan
03
2015
Thomaso7
Thomaso7

@filomena1941 - I can't believe you would say White Shoulders is a nasty smell, it's pure flowers and lilacs, it does have a sour floral later on though, but it is floral all the way. Tea rose is more rough I agree, but sweet too.
anyways, it;s funny cause I got someone White Shoulders recently because they noticed it when we went to TJ Maxx, it was apparently a perfume my grandmother used - and I did remember the smell from some days a long time ago.
I read it came from 1943 and some celebrities from the time wore it.
-white shoulders, lol. watch the movie "all that heaven allows" from 1958 for some cool shots of 1950's style dresses and outfits. from the early color films era.

Jan
03
2015
phurstclass
phurstclass

If it has been selling for 55 years it must have appeal to a lot of people. I prefer these older scents to the many expensive candy-floss concoctions of today.

Jan
03
2015
Synthaesthetic
Synthaesthetic

For me, the worst is Demeter's Cosmopolitan Cocktail. They sent me a full bottle free with a big order. Tried it on and almost threw up instantly. I *hate* the smell of alcohol, but at least if I throw up from drinking it, I got to have some fun first. It's unfortunate that they wasted a bottle on me. As soon as I can pawn it off on some poor acquaintance, I will.

The one I've tried on purpose that went most horribly wrong is Montale's Full Incense. I love incense, but I think the addition of elemi turned it to straight up stale floor wax. I'm going to hang on to it and try again some day, though--when I first tried Femme Rochas PdT, it was TWTIES, the cloves like railroad spikes driven into my skull, nauseating like mulled wine concentrate. Less than a year later, it's in my top five and I *love* oakmoss. I had a similar experience with (current, all synthetic) Paloma Picasso. Our tastes can do a 180, as we well know, so I'm always willing to give something another shot.

Unless it's Cosmopolitan Cocktail.

Jan
03
2015
perfumecritic
perfumecritic

I've had such a great time reading your responses ;-) Thank you for the comments and anecdotes. A few of you correctly guessed my nemesis and I was surprised to read that fragrances like Light Blue and Coco Mademoiselle were offensive to some. Just goes to show how one man's trash is another man's treasure. Much more to come in future ADDICTED articles.

Jan
03
2015
*sophi*
*sophi*

I will add only that: "someone's dream, is another one's nightmare..."
My Nemesis was a perfume(now discontinued) that as much i disliked it on me ,it was super when worn by my sister :)...
Gres cabochard is one of those scents which keeps me company some of those sleepless nights!
Kind Regards,

Jan
03
2015
Katieg
Katieg

I forgot! The one bottle I'm even ashamed to fish out of the drawer and look at. I'm so ashamed I bought it. Kate Moss 'Vintage Muse'! Surely contains cat pee? As well as Cacheral's 'Eden' original 'Poison' which I first smelled on a bus and thought was bubble gum and the zinc plaster smell of 'Anais Anais'. Ma Griffe is my masterpiece you guys!

Jan
03
2015
Angela Agiannidou
Angela Agiannidou

LOL, lam sure Miguel even Secretions Magnifiques smells nice on you. @ filomena, I am so hurt I need therapy! Tabu is my signature!!!!! Weegee, bang goes another of Miguels favourites.....his coworkers must suffer enormously...There are another 2 mega ponger TWTIES: Olympic Orchids 'the main act'(smells like Rome after Nero lit a bonfire...and I speak as an Incense lover...)and Aviance Night Musk (musty hair spray anyone...?)

Jan
03
2015
Filomena1941
Filomena1941

TWTIES is a three-way tie between White Shoulders, Tabu and Tea Rose.

Jan
03
2015
weegee
weegee

My vote goes to Carven's Ma Griffe. There are a few other fragrances loved by many that I cannot abide but this one sucked the air right out of the room so I found your vacuum cleaner reference spot-on for this horrendous juice. And, as if oak moss, styrax and vetiver weren't bitter enough, the mix includes ASAFOETIDA, the most bitter of the bitter, the stinkiest of the stinky - yes, the limburger cheese of the fragrance universe.

I imagine the perfumer was having an argument with Madame Carven over payment or creative control, perhaps under contract to produce something/anything by a particular date because Ma Griffe smells to me like revenge. Revenge perfume... yup. Truly this is TWTIES.

Jan
03
2015
Casey
Casey

The worst fragrance to me was Fleur D'eau by Rochas.
At first I thought I had received a perfume that had
turned bad..but the next bottle was the same!
Awful..

Jan
03
2015
ParfumAmour
ParfumAmour

If it is cabochard gres I would like to smell it.

My worst ever scent is Grasse by Milton Lloyd, a copycat of Aromatics Elixir, and it stinks of burnt rubber, never smelled any fragrance so bad in my whole life.

Jan
03
2015
Walking Unicorn
Walking Unicorn

I think TWTIES is Balmain's Jolie Madame, octagonal bottle that's now flat and its French. BTW, love that smell attack to your mom with a stink bomb. I totally would have done that too. My TWTIES is Serge Lutens Iris Silver Mist and Lush's Bad Breath of God.

Jan
03
2015
Cybernoir
Cybernoir

so your worst is cabochard gres. mine is the perfumer's workshop tea rose. and please, don't send me a sample!

Jan
03
2015
9-na
9-na

Thank you for the article, doctor Harrison. A nice read, with a thought and humour in it. TWTIES? Sounds important. I'd love to try it, the notes sound good to me. My own TWTIES isn't a scent with a name, really, but some of the aldehydes I rather disliked as a child still aren't that appealing to my nose, even though I love many a scent with aldehydes.

Jan
03
2015
Tontosgirluk
Tontosgirluk

Brilliant review of TWTIES. My best guess would be kiku although it was in a round bottle it smelt to me like burning plastic and lurking dead things. Only smelt it once, never forgotten and never again. yeaw. Ps I once threw a bottle of byzance away, awful vanilla throat burning yuck, I can't believe how much it is worth now!

Jan
03
2015
deepyb
deepyb

Even though I had to laugh because of your TWTIES article, I'm about to cry now: ... it's Cabochard?! No, it can't be Cabochard! Cabochard has been on my wishlist forever! And you know why? Because of MY childhood memories!
So Marlen, please tell us that you've made a mistake or that it was just a joke and that you actually really like Cabochard!

Jan
03
2015
sygrid29
sygrid29

the worst that i ever smelled contains mostly zesty citrus based perfumes and the infamous dior Fahrenheit. there something about it that i can't stand even to nowadays.

Jan
03
2015
sirop de Liège
sirop de Liège

I can relate to everything that's written here! When I was younger a new perfume was launched, Byzance by Rochas, to me it was the most horrible perfume I had ever smelled! Just like you I was thinking it was because at the time I was not as much into perfume as now. Last year my aunt had to go to a nursing home and my niece who was going trough the wardrobes found... yes! a bottle of Byzance with just a tiny bit of perfume left! She gave it to me and it was exactly as I remembered it and I still hated it. My niece didn't like it either but kept it as a reminder.
Just shows, some scents people write amazing reviews about, and you dislike them so much you start to think there's something wrong with you!
Oakmoss and vetyver are also on my 'dislike' list, so is patchouli but recently I ran into one I was surprised to discover I did like.

Jan
03
2015
Sagez
Sagez

Lancome Magie Noir was really quite a nasty surprise for me - smelled like I had stepped in something in a barn. I guess my chemistry didn't mix too well with this - but I have read a review that the tester I tried might have been off.

Jan
03
2015
alchimia72
alchimia72

I think it was a bottle of Cabochard. There are different version of bottles. One was octogonal. And it contains all the notes you listed. It was a fragrance very difficult to like and to wear.. I put it in my wish List only for the purpose of collection. But the notes are so far away what I like and what I am. Anyway I have Cabotine edp and Cabaret and they are simply delicious, so the brand can't be slaughtered. :). I came across similar emotions you felt when I smelled Maroussia and a fragrance by Roberto Cavalli. Sorry for the lovers.

Jan
03
2015
Lilah Veil
Lilah Veil

Haha! Great read with yet unnamed offender. Oddly, at this time in my life if I began naming frags I find gross my list would be too long, though I'll risk being the offender starting off the top with Balenciaga Rumba, Ungaro Diva and Fendi "OFFendi". Also, any big white or yellow floral with tuberose smells like a funeral home with clogged plumbing (to me). Key words in parenthesis.

I'm glad to see this. As one who has no problem writing negative reviews and finds reading them mischievously entertaining, even hilarious as some people try to describe off-putting smells, I find negative reviews greatly helpful for blind purchasing. Opinion from others who haven't made a certain scent their raving signature are helpful. I've never understood the hurt feelings of some whose wonderful experience with a scent was not my own. Just because someone else may love a scent, or their mother or grandmother wore it but it did not fare well for me does not mean I dislike them or their dearly beloved wearers personally. Those two things are not synonymous.

There are many frags I loathe, would never wear and cannot enjoy on others. There are some I loathe but find beautiful on people with the skin or style for those frags. Nevertheless, I can still appreciate the overall execution of any scent made with quality ingredients, well rounded with intriguing qualities.

I have no signature as I easily tend to grow aversion to any scent of over exposure, much like eating the same food too often. I am thinking of one right now that smells like celery, burnt beans, rubber and doo-doo with hint of rose. Even thinking of it turns my stomach and awakens olfactory recall enough to cause nasal hair fry and nausea. I won't name it due to my graphic description. It may be someone's sig and I don't want to hurt a feeling, though they hurt every one I have when they wear it near me. I'll live, just as they will when I write an honest, unfavorable review using nicer descriptions.
I'm sure I've worn someone's TWTIES too. ;)

Jan
02
2015
annagrig1980
annagrig1980

Great article!
Is it Cabochard Gres or Loulou?
My TWTIES is fantacy nights. Just hate it! A terrible combination of an old lady's perfume with ash and garage odour.

Jan
02
2015
perrfumefreak
perrfumefreak

Is this LouLou Cacharel? I don't actually know what it smells like but , depending on how you count and what you consider an actual " side" , but its the only perfume I know of that was in a octagonal/ hexagonal bottle, but in more recent years changed to a two sided bottle.

Jan
02
2015
titanium84
titanium84

Iceberg Twice!
Once in my life

Jan
02
2015
Thomaso7
Thomaso7

is this Caleche by Hermes?? did a quick search based on it coming out 55 years ago, so 2016-55= 1961. It sounds interesting as the smelly interperetation of carriage rides - (Hermes was into horse saddles I think at the start)
anyways, but based on you finding bargains, I think most Hermes are not bargain scents.
anyways, maybe you will say what it is later.
for me the worst perfume scent was Jovan Sex Appeal. I got it based on the name, as basically the first cheapest scent I got in younger times. I could not believe it was appealing after using it, so spicy and rough like dried grinded orange peals and mace shoved up your nose. I still got a half bottle of it from 20 years ago, use it sometimes casually since I can handle it now, but it is def. a cheapy.
oh, another ugggg smell for me is Aqua di Gio. just donlt like that one, the odd herby watery smell.

Jan
02
2015
TheTomFordEnthusiast
TheTomFordEnthusiast

Tom Ford's Amber Absolute... Old formulation or new, I just can't take it.

Jan
02
2015
halesgordo
halesgordo

TWTIES? Everyone is guessing Cabochard Gres and I am super curious to find out. I don't have a fragrance that appalls me, but I do have some awful scent memories associated with Joop. Lol. Wonderful article with great descriptions. Thanks.

Jan
02
2015
hermesman
hermesman

My enemy is L'eau D'issey Pour Homme.I can't even go near that stuff. My nose starts burning and head throbbing.Just thinking about it makes my eyes water.Good luck everyone on the stinky prize.

Jan
02
2015
miracleborgtech
miracleborgtech

Hahahahahahahaha! Great article! Please let us know what it is! I have never smelled Cabochard Gres as suggested by more experienced perfumistas, but from the notes it looks similar to Bandit (one of my all time favorites). My TWITIES is Lucien Lelong TAILSPIN. I got a vintage bottle as a present, and when I sniffed it was like the worst wet cement basement wall odor . . . maybe just a spoiled bottle, I hope! Can't believe anyone would want to smell like what is in that bottle! And like your mom, I kept the bottle because I wouldn't give it to someone else out of respect. LOL!

Jan
02
2015
PurpleIris49
PurpleIris49

Fiori d'Ambra by Profumum Roma gets my vote. Thanks for a good chuckle Marlen!

Jan
02
2015
matty64
matty64

My mom has a bottle of Pheromone by MM, for some reason this scent goes straight into my sinus cavities and reeks holy terror! Honestly, I cant be within an arms lenth of this putrid concoction.

Jan
02
2015
SorceressOfTheDark
SorceressOfTheDark

Hi Marlen, Very amusing article. I believe the perfume you're speaking of is Cabochard Gres. Do you really believe it's all that bad? I've always wanted to try it, it's one of the vintages I've never acquired yet. I love the older bottles with the little bow design. I have no idea whether I would enjoy it, but like you, I always try to find the good in perfumes. Here's to TWTIES. My personal TWTIES is Clinique Aromatics Elixir. I tried it decades ago, couldn't stomach it, and re-tried it recently. Still the same. Even with reformulation standards, it hasn't been weakened enough....

Jan
02
2015
yoginimeg
yoginimeg

I would love to try this! My own personal nemeses are Light Blue and Coco Mademoiselle: I don't mind smelling either on someone else, but they turn into wretched messes on my skin.

Jan
02
2015
hernie
hernie

Everything from Avon...Can`t believe that mark still exists. It`s a nightmare, really

Jan
02
2015
ROLDAN
ROLDAN

Elizabeth Taylor "Diamonds" or anything from this line. .. Pure migrane elixirs. Just can't stand it. .. Oh boy! One of my co-workers used it, thank God we didn't work at the same room.

Jan
02
2015
matillyrose
matillyrose

I would have to go with Gres Cabochard, I also have had a bottle in my drawer for years and will probably be found by my boys once I am long gone. I simply refuse to re gift to anyone...

Jan
02
2015
Hija
Hija

It must be Gres Cabochard. In fact I love it...
Kind regards

Jan
02
2015
angel6
angel6

I have smell bad perfumes but the winner has to be Tabu by Dana. It's torture for me. I think for what I read here maybe Secretions Mgnifique would beat it.

Jan
02
2015
c3c
c3c

Ok so I'm in for self torture!
I'll remember to test it on tissue or something so I don't suffer "that horrible scent you can't scrub off." Been there done that, more than once. I've tested Bandit, don't recall much beyond not enjoying it so it would be an adventure! Interesting that there's something about someone being permanently scarred by a scent makes you want to try it. Like a bottle of wine I once opened and told my dad just how bad it was. Unbelievably, cork not properly sealed, kind of bad. He argued with me valiantly about it. Then he tried it. It takes a lot to get my dad to agree once he's decided on something, but his expression was enough. And yet, you just have to try don't you. I must know what this mystery scent is! And if I don't recognize the name I'm going to want to try it because I went and read this! So yes please, I'll take one.

Jan
02
2015
NataliaChudo
NataliaChudo

It has to be Womanity for me...

Jan
02
2015
tar6
tar6

Im a beginner
The worst thing was dsquared potion

Jan
02
2015
pablOSO
pablOSO

A story for you Marlen:

I live in Mexico . here , almost everybody makes a pot of beans at least twice a week. we boiled them with onion and garlic and some salt. when the beans are done we use them as a side dish or to eat them alone with salsa or cheese.

anyway , as we make a big pot ,there are always leftovers , so we put our beans in big tupperwares for us to store. we might eat more beans the next day!

sometimes we forget about the beans in the fridge , so they spoil inside the tupperware and when we open them again , a foul smell will come out . so we have to throw them away and make a new pot!

anyway...i had never smelled something that reminds me of those rotten beans in the fridge until the day i took a sniff of a really popular and best seller fragance ...

PARIS HILTON for women

i swear to god , and i swear on my abuela's grave that is the most horrid smell i have ever come across..

to me is EAU DE ROTTEN BEANS.

Jan
02
2015
megenz
megenz

If it smells like the back of my throat tastes upon waking with my mouth open after a big night of cheap coffee liqueur, dancing, singing and a regretful social cigarette then I'm not sure I need the decant :-|

Jan
02
2015
GrandmaGaga
GrandmaGaga

What a coincidence! Last night I was sifting through a box of samples I have been gifted and came upon a rather generously-sized decant of Cabochard...I applied a drop to my left inner wrist and sniffed...rather than re- writing my review I invite you to read in the review section what I wrote last night. The strange thing is that after posting I scrolled down and read several other reviews for Cabochard and happened upon another I had written the day I received the decant in the mail...what a difference! I don't know if the difference is temperature related but last night Miss Cabochard decided to be sweet...
Oh, my TWTIES is Aromatics Elixer....pure Vitamin B capsule!

Jan
02
2015
anita thompson.monroe
anita thompson.monroe

I believed a famous fragrance reviewer and bought a bottle of Bandit..It made me physically ill. I put it outside on the porch until I found someone who wanted to
take it. There was a similar reaction to Dzing. It's a mistake to take advice from a reviewer without checking it out with a sample.

Jan
02
2015
fazalcheema
fazalcheema

please tell which is that TWTIES, i cant contain my curiosity. As far as I am concerned, there certainly have been fragrances that I hated at first sniff and cannot picture myself wearing it but the one that come to mind include RIEN and Secretions Magnifique even though ELDO is one of the brands I like and I love their Jasmin et cigarette.

Jan
02
2015
Casamir
Casamir

Hmmm TWTIES...
Yes I'll agree Secretions Magnifique makes me wretch, but I don't feel right saying that's the worst. I'm sure it was purposely created to be that, so I think that has to keep it out of the running.
For me, TWTIES is either Cool Water (smells like very cheap "unscented" deodorant), or even worse - Velvet Vetiver. I love vetiver fragrances, but Velvet Vetiver isn't one - to me it smells like a horrible mash-up of dill pickles, lemons and rotting coconut. (blech)

Jan
02
2015
Katieg
Katieg

TWTIES? Lenteric's 'Tweed', Dior's original 'Poison' 'Anais Anais' (smells like the sticky bit on sticking plaster.

Jan
02
2015
bibibling
bibibling

This has to be TFTIEROF (the funnies thing I ever read on Fragrantica!)

Jan
02
2015
Beach Girl
Beach Girl

I'm going to guess Joy, simply because it's one of the worst I ever smelled. It's certainly not Cabochard! :-) I am very curious though.

Jan
02
2015
The Shalimar woman
The Shalimar woman

I have never tried Cabochard, but I would like to!
The worst thing I ever smelled? Most of the recent perfume releases....

Jan
02
2015
migueldematos
migueldematos

I am speechless Marlen. I will make sure I wear it the first time we meet hhahahahaahhaah :). by the way you will only understand it if you smell vintage earlier versions. And current edp is the worst version of all. Now really Marlen just wait and see what I will do to your nose. Desecrating my favourite... Shame on you :) let me grqb my pure parfum in your honour!

Jan
02
2015
Fragrant Desert
Fragrant Desert

TWTIES? Halston Z-14. I would always try again and sniff my bottle as a teen. UUGGGG. Nice bottle, really want to like it because Halston. Nice bottle. UUGGGG. Recently wanted to do same and see if my sense of scent has matured to appreciate Z-14. Nah. Still don't have the courage for that - only to get stuck with the nice bottle Again!

Jan
02
2015
tittertat
tittertat

I don't know anything about Cabochard but I really want to smell it now! I also am curious if Cabotine is as bad as they say...
For me there are a few fragrances I simply hate( on anyone!) but the worst I can think of are Zmitsouko( oak moss horror and crazy cat lady) and Angel ( if sweaty Johnny Depp were 500 lbs and took a bath in soda syrup and caramel frosting).

Jan
02
2015
Angela Agiannidou
Angela Agiannidou

@funky tomo, and to think it has seven lives(like cats...), there will be no end of it.

Jan
02
2015
Nenalata
Nenalata

I have my dislikes, but none of them compare to the sheer horror that is Secretions Magnifiques.

Jan
02
2015
mystica
mystica

I'd be happy to receive a decant of Cabochard which I've never tried and is on my wishlist :)

Jan
02
2015
hhalfred
hhalfred

TWTIES are :
Poison from CD
Paris from YSL
Jardins de Bagatelle from Guerlain !
Headache guaranteed ! everytime !

Jan
02
2015
majagk
majagk

# Carnation
as for Carillon pour un Ange, my first impression was similar. but being huge fan of tauer, and after reading all reviews, i gave it the few more shots, and now i am feeling completely opposite ... noses... strange organs...

Jan
02
2015
Angela Agiannidou
Angela Agiannidou

LOL, nero77 is right, I hope dear Miguel doesn't read this!
I have Cabochard and it is fine, but I have the edt , my money is on Aromatics Elixir, what a stench! Not all fumes work on all people, some less than others
My TWTIES is Chantilly and Catalyst, smelt like old, stale burnt kebab! ( nice picture of 'mad man Don Draper though....))

Jan
02
2015
Celcey
Celcey

When I was in middle school, I wore Charlie ( like many young girls).
As an adult I came across a bottle of Charlie white and decided to buy it , figuring that this would be close enough to be a walk down memory lane.
It is TWTIES as a perfume. straight up peppered pencil shavings and it was SUPER STRONG!
I thought I might have had a bad bottle, but there are too man similar reviews posted on this site.
Stay away from Revlon's Charlie White !

Jan
02
2015
Cochlea
Cochlea

Thank you for this article, I just had to giggle at the pics.
Cabochard is French for stubborn, headstrong, I know it is Gres Cabochard! Unfortunally I have never sniffed it but would like the chance to try. Thank you.


NebelGeist: Is it Manifesto by Yves Saint Laurent?

Jan
02
2015
danceforjoy
danceforjoy

TWTIES - Hm. I have smelled some really bad ones, but I think most stuff will work on somebody. On me, Pink Sugar was laughably awful. And L'Artisan Parfumeur's Oeillet Sauvage woke me from a nap with a gag reflex. But Marlen, I think I may know what you are describing on here, and I am a bit embarrassed to say that it is something I actually like, and no one on here has yet mentioned - Madame Rochas, maybe?

Anyway, I would happily accept a decant of whatever-it-is. This was a very entertaining review, thanks.

Jan
02
2015
lemonzest
lemonzest

Well, I like Cabochard. It works on me, but I have a clinically slow metabolism with a normal body temp of 97.6, which could be part of how scent chemicals react (or more accurately the diffusion rate of the chemicals).
Whatever.
TWTIES is GIVENCHY'S PI. Even with an advanced degree in British Literature, I struggle for words to express how obnoxious this scent is to me. It smells like furniture polish and synthetic cough syrup flavoring run through a Ninja blender and microwaved for three hours on the popcorn setting.
I like almost everything; like Browning's last duchess, I love whatever I sniff and my sniffs go everywhere (horrible paraphrasing). But Pi is TWTIES, 3.14159 times worse than anything else, squared.

Jan
02
2015
MetalMan
MetalMan

I hope this comment isn't too vulgar - my TWTIES is Secretions Magnifique...it's simply too much to bear. I tried to find anything redeemable in it and gave it 8+ hours before showering it off, but nothing good came of that horrific endeavor. To me, the "human" essences in that fume smell something quite like that note in vomit or excrement that illicits the gag reflex...as you can imagine, every time I leaned in to sniff SM I gagged...lovely...

Jan
02
2015
SadieBluesLady
SadieBluesLady

Until I read this article, I had no clue that an earlier bottle style for Cabochard had 8 sides! For some reason I could not get the image of another octagonal bottle from 1960 out of my head even though the notes were no match.

My own experience with Cabochard was apparently unlike yours in that I started with a newer bottle and disliked it intensely but came to love the scent in a vintage edition.

So, thank you but no, I have no interest in again smelling the current version even if I were to win a sample. The chances of me winning anything have been slim to none for most of my life, so that is really no actual concern.

Jan
02
2015
RubyBirdy
RubyBirdy

I'm wearing Bandit today and I feared that was what you were talking about, but then I knew from the clue that it had to be Cabochard :)

I can understand not liking Bandit. I love it, but the key is the dosage: just a tiny bit will do!

Other than Secretions Magnifiques, which is a given, my personal worst is probably Jasmine et Cigarette by ELdO - smells like an ashtray in a skanky club, no thank you! Moon Dust byMiN also made me automatically recoil from how bad it smelled. I got a seriously nasty vibe off several of the Montale ouds, but I guess I just don't like oud.

Jan
02
2015
veda
veda

I think it is Cabochard...my worst is Magie Noire by Lancome the vintage one...

Jan
02
2015
Bebe70
Bebe70

Poison and Opium.

Jan
02
2015
maio2012
maio2012

Are you out of your mind? Rethink this you have propposed!

Jan
02
2015
emt1986
emt1986

Cabochard! I don't care to win one of the decants as I already have it. It's definitely not TWTIES... It reminds me quite a bit of one of my favorites, Halston Classic, but I am a bit disappointed with it as I don't get the leather until way, way into the drydown, just before it disappears. TWTIES? Charlie Gold when the violet takes over, or that time in Kohls when some teenage girl went nuts with the Pink Sugar tester. This was a really funny, cheeky read, though... I agree, more of these!

Jan
02
2015
verdigris
verdigris

This was so entertaining I think we might have to plead with you to do more in this vein!
Like so many others I think this must be Cabochard- and if so I thank you sincerely for removing any conceivable temptation I may have had about blind buying it. Don't feel bad about that; yes it may have removed a transaction from the 'fragile economic recovery' but I guarantee that if I had purchased it, and actually sniffed it, then when I set it afire and tossed it in the arroyo it would have burned down half of New Mexico...
Seriously, IMHO negative reviews are a public service and if they can make me laugh- really laugh, as this did- they are elevated to preventive medicine and I appreciate every single one of them. Thanks for the cackles.

Jan
02
2015
aspirina
aspirina

Oh Sweetheart, I don't want to be the lucky winner of your decants..hahahaha..but I wonder if what you are talking about is Gres Cabochard!
Yeah..It sounds awfull, powerfull, leatherish mossy war weapon, hindgut scent in a bottle!
I love your articles Dr. Marlen, but this time I won't get sad if as usual I don't win!
:-)

Jan
02
2015
rp6969
rp6969

Cabochard

Jan
02
2015
Carnation
Carnation

I would have to say that it's a three way tie for first place: Etat Libre d'Orange Encens et Bubblegum (Incense and bubblegum? I think not. More like burnt rubber and rancid wax.),Thierry Mugler Angel and a real close winner for the top spot, Tauer Perfumes Carillon pour un Ange (Ever been next to a city sanitation truck in traffic? You'd roll your window up asap too!)

Jan
02
2015
purpleturtle
purpleturtle

Too funny! My reaction to Angel.

Jan
02
2015
juji
juji

What IS it??!! lol!

Jan
02
2015
nettoyant
nettoyant

For me, TWTIES is Balmain Jolie Madame and oh look, it's also similar to Bandit. I tried the current formula, it smelled like a dirty greasy floor :s I worked at McDonalds as a teen and this smell made me nauseous, no fail. I kept testing it and would smh every time. I think it's a case of some of us being really sensitive to some scents. Where others get rich complex leather others get grease or bitter or harsh. I adore aldehydes but when they are mixed with civet or musky plants like oak moss, I just don't enjoy the result. JM doesn't have aldehydes (that they are copping to lol) though.

I don't think it's skin chemistry at all, it's just that we are all different! Like, some get soap and vileness when they taste cilantro others gets meh...peppery parsley.

Jan
02
2015
Tiwalii
Tiwalii

You are probably talking about Cabochard...

The worst I've ever smelled, well so far anyway, is Vetiver des Sables by Montale. *shivers* :/

Jan
02
2015
caitrun
caitrun

My TWTIES are Eternity by Calvin Klein and Chloe Narcissus.. I just CANNOT tolerate these aromas. Funny enough I adore TM Angel which I see is a lot of people's TWTIES. To each his/her own I suppose!

Jan
02
2015
pablOSO
pablOSO

jejejejeje

ohh come on! cabochard is not that bad!

to me it reminds me of my mother... i think it depends on the wearer and his-her memories...


to me , one of the worst perfumes i have ever sniffed was

KELLY CALECHE by HERMEs

that thing is just wrong..smells like rotten vegetables or saddle soap..

Jan
02
2015
flowers-in-the-springtime
flowers-in-the-springtime

Mine are
Cacherel Eden
Clinique Aromatics
Lanolin Arpege
Robert Piguet Bandit

Jan
02
2015
AngieGCarp
AngieGCarp

Cabochard edt is not bad!!! It's definitely an acquired taste but not the worst eva!!!

Jan
02
2015
_Lashes_
_Lashes_

Mine are Angel and Polo Ralph Lauren (green bottle). Everytime I go into a fragrance store I test Angel because on paper I should love it, but every time I smell it I just get Stale urine. Polo makes me nauseous and physically sick if I don't get away from it quick enough.

Jan
02
2015
emily7
emily7

Funny story!

My personal TWTIES is Je Reviens by Worth.
It's not WORTH, it's THE WORST!
Je Reviens, please don't come back.. EVER.

Jan
02
2015
nero77
nero77

Marlen I know what it is!

CABOCHARD!

Btw I like Cabochard, but have only tried the Eau de Toilette, would love to try this one.

Don't let Miguel read this article!

Jan
02
2015
Florista
Florista

My personal TWTIES is of much more recent, niche origin: Ladamo by O'driu. Top notes that are supposed to be mossy, earthy smell straight up like a concentrated bullion cube. Beef broth, salt, dehydrated onion and celery? Horrid.

Jan
02
2015
smile4thecamera
smile4thecamera

Great story! Sounds like Lanvin My Sin to me. My second guess is Narcisse Noir. The perfume that smells positively awful to me now is White Linen. OMG...

Jan
02
2015
Evenblondernow
Evenblondernow

My personal TWTIES is Angel. I understand everything on paper. I understand and commend the the effort...but good lord almighty...this stuff STINKS!! Then there is "Lady Million". My Mom sent me a bottle a few years ago for Christmas. I sprayed it, thought, "hmm, not too bad"...and ran to the bathroom to vomit. I have, in 35+ years of wearing+experimenting with scent, never had a reaction like that. I sold it the next day!

Jan
02
2015
PerfumeWhore
PerfumeWhore

Wow! Great story!! Would love to smell your TWTIES:)))

Jan
02
2015
smellagent
smellagent

won't try to guess what twties is could be lot's of scents. I love how one persons poison is another persons pleasure. I try to respect that in my reviews of perfumes too. MY nemesis is le feu d'issey. To me it smells like burnt electrical cords with sour milk and roses. I still have several factory samples that I will be swapping or giving away. I have already swapped some with a person who loves le feu d'issey and that made me feel better. We all find different things to fall in love with and to hate. I think this site celebrates both.

Jan
02
2015
umayka
umayka

for me TWTIES is Tom Ford - Black Orchid unfortunately. some people seem to enjoy it greatly, but I just can't. maybe my nose is not sophisticated enough to appreciate its beauty...

Jan
02
2015
rufflesbows
rufflesbows

Great article! So fun to read about your TWTIES. I have never smelled this fragrance and I don't think i ever want to!

Jan
02
2015
ntabassum92
ntabassum92

My nemesis is Nebras by Al-Rehab (and anything that smells like it! Boudour, La Panthere a bit...) ugghh the sickly sweet floral/fruity notes just turn in my stomach and I can't get away fast enough. Worst of all, these fragrances never seem to dry down on my skin...

I have no idea what your mystery fragrance, but please tell us soon, I can't wait to find out!

Jan
02
2015
ESWenchi
ESWenchi

Is Cabocahrd Gres really this bad?... I used to own one and think it's quite ok- even a bit fresh,,,

Jan
02
2015
Raidersteveo
Raidersteveo

As others have already indicated the culprit most assuredly is Cabochard with which I concur quite confidently.

As for my bad perfume experiences, the most regrettable purchase was Giorgio Red for Men. I'd say the vast majority of fragrances have a least some pleasantness about them whether or not I would actually wear them. But Red on the other hand, to my nose, does not contain even the slightest pleasantness. It is putrid. Similar to Marlen's experience with Cabochard, all I get from this is a burnt vacuum cleaner belt or some harsh animal secretion. I think a perfectly apt description of my take on Red comes from the movie "Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy" where someone exclaims "Ooo, it smells like a turd covered in burnt hair!"

Thank you Marlen for this fantastic article and I especially like the mystery of guessing the perfume you are describing. I think you need to do more articles along these same lines where we are forced to guess the mystery perfume.

By the way, I'm not a candidate for the Cabochard as I'm afraid I would have no use for it.

Jan
02
2015
interdite
interdite

I have the same strong association with LVEB. Everything about it is wrong to me, pure poison to my senses. I wrote a review on its page and it is kind of funny because I also stated that I would not write a negative review of it but I did. Because my dislike of it is so strong that it stirs intense emotions/physical reactions. I feel as if Lancome had bottled all the chemicals and synthetics that have been proven to cause allergies, cancer or hormonal disruption and made sure the juice was as potent and lethal as possible and then colored it a pretty shade of pink.

I feel quite the same about Coco Mademoiselle and Flowerbomb. Strangely enough, I love all Muglers!


I wonder at first if it could be Coty Imprevu, but the bottle description does not match. I know many people dislike it! But as the other reviewers said, yes, Cabochard. I always thought I was the only one who cannot appreciate it. hahah I do not hate it, far from it. But it's a hard one for me.

I just went and read Miguel's "the 7 lives of Cabochard" again. Funny how different tastes are.

Jan
02
2015
Dayno
Dayno

Very much enjoyed the read Marlen!

One fragrance that provoked a similar feeling for me, was Bijan for men... no surprise then, that it has 2 of the dreaded notes you mention: oakmoss and vetiver!

As others have mentioned, my guess would be that TWTIES is Cabochard by Gres.

Jan
02
2015
[email protected]@r
C@nn@r

I have a couple TWTies for sure! Is this cabochard gres?? I actually remember reading about this long before I read this article, based on the notes....seems like a man's cologne!
Kouros, A*men, givenchy homme, zero plus-masculine, 1 million, tom ford tobacco oud, and lush breath of god are all TWTIES to me!! That's a long list, but I have more, for some reason I dislike more perfumes, it seems, then i actually like??

Jan
02
2015
Readysniffer1
Readysniffer1

My fragrance nemesis is Boucheron de Boucheron. It's just so full of tuberose and civet. And it's in the same category of some of my loves. I get physically ill when I wear it.

Jan
02
2015
Readysniffer1
Readysniffer1

You've got to be kidding! Cabochard is the bomb, baby. But, fun article. But, dude, I've got 3 bottles of vintage and enough perfume to last me till doomsday. I think I'm set.

Jan
02
2015
ComfyCat
ComfyCat

I enjoyed your little horror story of bottled evil very much, Marlen! From the adjective "stubborn" I take it would probably be Cabochard, but please: No sample for me, I'm unvoluntarily smelling enough fragrant nemesis incarnations each day already:
Chanel Coco Mademoiselle, La Vie est Belle, just to name the two I encounter the most, they are usually absolutely oversprayed one would wish for a fragrance police to come and wrap the perpetrator in a 100%frag-sealing foil or something.

Jan
02
2015
ChypreAnn
ChypreAnn

I think NebelGeîst is talking about La Vie Est Belle.

Jan
02
2015
NebraskaLovesScent
NebraskaLovesScent

Marlon, I had a very similar experience with Antilope by Weil. Oh, the horror!

Like the others, I'm going to guess it's Cabochard Gres, though I admit, I liked that fragrance at one time. Had a 2007/2008-ish vintage that was pleasant, though I ultimately found myself not reaching for it very often and swapped it away.

Jan
02
2015
Arlene-Beatrix
Arlene-Beatrix

I received a really bad fragrance as a Xmas gift and I simply threw it away immediately, I mean, when I returned home so no one could see it in my bin. Ha ha it would be a true punishment to use it and I also couldn't imagine giving it to anyone... just like the author wrote in his article.
All in all, we have fragrances, but fragrances don't have us, no matter what brand they are.
However, sometimes I have a feeling that some people use fragrances or clothes that they don't like, just because they think they cannot have what they truly like.
Actually, due to my unpleasant parents, I spent most of my life out of my comfort zone, even when I had my own place. It's not easy to walk free when you were used to 'cage of mind', I can tell you that! But it is essential to try to be free. To enjoy your comfort zone.

Jan
02
2015
FunkyTomo
FunkyTomo

I too cant work out NeibleGeist's "vanilla horror". First thought of Angel but its not a new release is it....hmmm....flankers only just appearing,v popular with young women. Could it be Lancome La Vie Ist Belle?

Jan
02
2015
FunkyTomo
FunkyTomo

Other awful scents......Tweed. Tramp. Pagan. Avon Prowl.

Just sprayed on Avon Prowl now. Foul as i remembered!!! Nasty cheap plastic doll smell mixed with the most inferior synthetic musk . Awful!!!

Jan
02
2015
Sleepalm
Sleepalm

I couldn't resist the challenge. I love a good mystery. By way of google I'd say TWTIES is cabochard gres. I kinda want to smell it now out of awful curiosity. I just took a second look at the entry for it and a lot of people say it smells like aramis. This is intriguing indeed.

Jan
02
2015
majagk
majagk

hmmm, cabochard has all three: aldehydes, oakmoss and vetiver, that is true.
and the 55 years in production also match... but it can not be so bad, can it? i do not remember. i know that my mother got mini bottle in early eigthies and that my friend and I spend it, spill it, by playing, then we refilled it with water, and she never asked... would like to be reminded, lol...silly, right now i am wearing ambre cabochard...



#nebelgeist - what is that vanilla horror?!

Jan
02
2015
NebelGeîst
NebelGeîst

What fragrance was it? Cabochard by Grès?

I can't remember a perfume of my childhood that made me feel this way, but there is a recent one I just can not stand and that becomes more and more popular, very much to my own displeasure (not to say dread). It's a terribly synthetic vanilla that many say has rather moderate sillage, but I can smell it in the tram from one end to the other.. Mostly the younger ladies tend to overspray while one sprizz is far more than enough. I'm close to call it my Nemesis, even closer as I've seen with my hair stand on end the first flankers popping up.
Terrible, aweful, emetic. I'm waking up at night with sweaty sheets and a silent scream getting stuck in my throat because of the faint suspicion this ... smell ... might have found its way into my dreams (the last save haven I can imagine).

But it gets so much love, even here on this site...
Can you guess which one I mean?

Jan
02
2015
FunkyTomo
FunkyTomo

Without a doubt ....It has to be Cabochard by Gres.
Ive no wish to sample it again as I found it to be as bad as Marlen describes.

Indstrial garages and about- to-snap - hoover - belts = Yep.

Bandit is much more tolerable to my nose

Jan
02
2015
themattsky
themattsky

Such a great read! I'm curious to know what TWTIES is! I have absolutely no idea.

Jan
02
2015
vmarshmellow
vmarshmellow

I think it is Cabochard Gres.

Jan
02
2015

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