With 35 positive reviews, 6 neutral reviews and 1 negative review on basenotes.. all for the princely sum of £5, I was really made up. I mean, you just don’t get those good deals anywhere. The fragrance: Guy Laroche Horizon- a very different take on the marine genre of fragrances. Safe to say most people who smell this instantly fall in love with it. Even divine creations like Dior Homme Eau De Parfum Intense are not that universally loved.
Packaging & Presentation
My bottle arrived on a Monday morning, albeit rather unexpectedly. When you spend £5 on a bottle with free delivery included, it’s not something that stays on your mind and fills you with anticipation.. neither do you expect it to arrive on the next working day (I’d ordered it the previous Friday). After ripping through the packaging, the first thing that caught my attention was the presentation. This REALLY was a 19 year old fragrance. The box had archaic looking designs which were probably concocted on a 16 bit computer and then there was THAT bottle. Wow, where do I begin? It’s immensely ugly. There’s inexplicable engraving on it which I can only assume to be sea weed? I really have no idea. Then there’s the fact that the plastic cap is difficult to remove! Not a good start!
I suppose all that would be forgivable had the fragrance been any good.. right? I mean; 35 positive reviews, 6 neutral reviews and 1 negative review. You just can’t make those numbers up. This stuff HAD to be special.. right? Let’s see what happened next.
Guy Laroche Horizon Fragrance Review
The first spray confirmed my worst fears. YUCK! Patchouli? Seriously? How do you make a marine fragrance and then add a big dose of patchouli? Yes, of course, I appreciate that there are no definite rules when it comes to creating a fragrance but some things you just don’t do. You don’t see people squirting a big dollop of ketchup on a chocolate bar. When on God’s earth has that ever worked well? And speaking of the marine note, why is it so strong and why is it so harsh? The marine note in horizon is so unrefined that it literally smells like toilet cleaner since it so resembles bleach. I can sort of understand this as the scent was created in 1993. The influence of the 80′s whereby stronger meant better was so very apparent here. I doubt the perfumer exercised any restraint!
I have smelt a lot of fragrances in my time and aside from Polo Green, very few have ever actually disgusted me. This did. Yuck, yuck yuck. It smells extremely dated. Everything in it is just so harsh. Never have I EVER wished a fragrance had poor sillage and longevity until I sprayed Horizon cologne. Except that it doesn’t. It keeps going and going… and going.
It’s progression is fairly linear though it must be said that as it calms down, it becomes soapy and somewhat bearable. The problem is, bearable just doesn’t cut it and in my eyes, the patchouli makes the already harsh marine note seem heavier. To my nose it really is disgusting and I couldn’t wash it off quickly enough. YUCK.
Disclaimer: I don’t hate patchouli at all. It’s just that this is a marine scent and a heavy, earthy note like patchouli seems out of place in here. Some of my favorite scents i.e. L’Instant de Guerlain Pour Homme Eau Extreme, Chanel Antaeus & Dior Homme Eau De Parfum Intense have a healthy dose of the stuff. Note: they are all ‘powerhouses’.. in other words.. not ‘fresh’!
Maybe I’m just young and I can’t appreciate a good classic? Except that isn’t true as Chanel Antaeus is one of my favorite fragrances of all time. Horizon is just terrible and for the first time, I strongly disagree with the well informed guys at basenotes. This stuff is recommended when someone is looking for a ‘marine’ fragrance with good longevity. I can’t help but feel for anyone unfortunate enough to take on this advice. Boy were they in for a nasty surprise!
Want a marine fragrance with good longevity? Well…if you MUST know.. there’s a few DOZEN to choose from: L’Eau D’Issey, Nautica Voyage, Halston Unbound, Bvlgari Aqva & Aqva Marine, Azzaro Chrome, Azzaro Chrome Legend (can be harsh at times.. overly intense for a fresh scent).. and those are the ones I can name off the top of my head. There are lots more. All these are much more refined, better blended and smell way better than this bottle of olfactory poison. Granted they cost a lot more.. but what did you expect? You really do get what you pay for.
Where to buy Guy Laroche Horizon in the UK
Ebay – £9.99 + £2.99 delivery (50ml)
Where to buy Guy Laroche Horizon in the US
Amazon (affiliate link):
Guy Laroche Horizon Review Verdict:
Longevity: 8/10 (Unfortunately for you, it doesn’t quit)
Scent: 0/10 (Seaweed and patchouli really don’t go well together. Smells bleach like, harsh and too much like the ocean for it to actually be a nice fragrance. I hate it.)
Uniqueness: 9/10 ( The marine accord is instantly recognizable but nothing smells like it. That’s not always a good thing)
Value for money: 6/10 (It may be cheap but that doesn’t mean it’s money well spent. Damien Hirst sold his crystal skulls for around $100 million and now Tate Modern has replicas going for around £40,000. Yes, cheap – comparatively.. but it’s really not money well spent. Let’s face it.)
Let’s score this baby up so I can wash it off my wrist! Altogether, it scores an average of 5.75. Not a terrible score and it’s actually higher than Yves Saint Laurent L’Homme. Don’t be fooled as the scoring system only tells you half the story. While L’homme lacks any real character, it is in a different class altogether and Horizon couldn’t hold a candle to it. I’d stay well away.
For once I have a fragrance I actually detest. I’ll keep it around and give it a proper wearing but i’m not holding my breath. Maybe I might need to when I wear this. The same house that brought us the incredible classic Drakkar Noir somehow managed to give us this. All I can say is WOW…Google+