I have to admit, when first approached about sampling and reviewing collegiate-inspired fragrances, my response was, “Smells from my college days are associated with books, coffee, pizza, basketballs, footballs, eucalyptus & ocean air…then, beer, locker room/gym socks & frou-frou drinks. Naturally, I am curious to see how THAT would translate into a bottled version!”
Initially, I expected to sample fun, trendy scents more appropriate for kids half my age. Yes, I said it, half my age! You know what I mean: sweet, fruity & bordering obnoxious candy smells. I was pleasantly surprised to find that these fragrances are more alumni status than freshman coed. They are not basic, simple smells, rather they are complex sophisticated, elegant notes blended with very deliberate, concise detail. University alumni can be proud of these representations! I graduated from Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles, so I clearly have not been swayed in my review. These are my own honest opinions for which no monetary compensation was provided in exchange. Perfumes have been provided for the review and giveaway. We are giving away full-sized bottles 1.7 oz (retail value $39.95).
Masik has created cologne for men & perfume for women capturing collegiate nostalgia for nineteen universities around the United States. I have been given all women’s perfume to evaluate.
OLE MISS | University of Mississippi
TOP · Sparkling Bergamot, Lemon Zest, Ruby Raspberry
MIDDLE · Rich Black Currant, Crushed Tonka Beans, Sweet Blueberry
BASE · Amber Woods, Patchouli, Sandalwood, Vanilla
Ole Miss is a fruity combination, smelling both the red raspberry & rich black currant immediately. What lingers is the blend of earthy patchouli, sandalwood and vanilla notes. Bergamot inspires happiness so you are left with a fresh, cheery impression.
VT | Virginia Tech
TOP · Crisp Marine Air, Orange Valencia, Kaffir Lime, Golden Apple
MIDDLE · Succulent Tamarind, Jasmine Petals, Marigold, Muguet, Touch of violet leaf
BASE · Exotic Rosewood, Amber Woods, Skin Musk, Fresh Cut Wood
VT immediately hits you with a splash of golden apple and fragrant citrus scents follow. There is a definite presence of that clean, marine air scent reminiscent of coastal cities. Tamarind sweetens just a touch, there are hints at the pretty marigold and jasmine presence and the woodsy base evens it out beautifully.
NC State | North Carolina State
TOP · Red Granadilla Fruit, Crushed Kiwi, Key Lime Zest, Cherry Nectar
MIDDLE · Red Rosella Petals, Exotic Passionflower, Star Jasmine
BASE · Smooth Sandalwood, Sun-bleached Woods, Sensual Musk
NC State has that beachy vibe to it. Cherry nectar is the most noticeable to me with a lime accent to balance it, but after letting it settle for a bit, the kiwi is what emerges. I am not familiar with granadilla fruit, but sweet and exotic comes to mind which compliments the heavier floral scent and hint of musk giving it a more rounded fragrance. The sensual musk is lovely and sandalwood is indeed smooth and subtle.
UNC | University of North Carolina
TOP · Lychee Champagne Accord, Fizzy Mandarin, Crisp Green Apple
MIDDLE · Lush Jasmine, Muguet, Rose Bouquet, Baby Violet
BASE · Sheer Vanilla, Indonesian Patchouli, Amber Woods, Musk
UNC has the crisp green apple and the sweetness of lychee, definitely the rose and baby violet create a fuller floral body to it, but the heaviness of the patchouli and musk give it an evening feel. A slower paced, romantic, sultry feel that evokes thoughts of an moonlit stroll.
Clemson | Clemson University
TOP · Juicy Guava, Frozen Melon, Passionfruit Nectar, Sparkling Nectarine
MIDDLE · Red Mango, Lush Dragon Fruit, Coconut Water, Sugared Orange Blossom
BASE · Sensual Skin Musk, Exotic Tonka Bean, Blonde Woods
Clemson smells like an entire fruit basket. I could distinctly experience the juiciness of the guava and the sparkle of the nectarine alongside of the exotic mix of dragon fruit, and passionfruit. The melon was particularly surprising. It is not an artificial melon scent, but a true, pure aroma as if you are inhaling a lush tropical garden. Mango and orange blossom completed the gorgeous bouquet perfectly.
I thoroughly enjoyed this sampling experience! It was like a taste test for my nose! Uncovering the specific ‘flavors’ from each was a fun. I am one of those dreaded migraine sufferers so I am extremely particular about what smells bombard me on a constant basis. I am thrilled to share: Each of these collegiate-inspired perfumes is an absolute delight. Even the stronger fragrances I thought would be annoying or trigger a headache because it was too intense ended up opening up beautifully and really made me think of how elegant and brilliant these creations are. I felt emotions captured in a bottle. We all know how powerful a role smell plays in instantly sparking nostalgia. I love that so many elements of a campus are considered to make a unique impression. I could personally make use of each of these. I thought I had a clear cut favorite (Clemson), but it really depends on your mood or the occasion to determine which scent you would want. I am completely impressed and look forward to working with Masik in the future.
THE MASIK FRAGRANCE FORMULATION PROCESS
Masik Collegiate Fragrances partners with each university in our collection to create a different men’s cologne and women’s perfume. These signature scents are inspired by unique elements such as the school colors, campus style, flowers and trees, traditions and location. We pitch our perfumers a ‘fragrance brief’ that outlines these school specific elements along with pictures of the university campus, sporting events, students and alumni. Once we formulate scent options for the school, the universities conduct smell sessions to determine which fragrances they like best – these scents then become the official men’s and women’s fragrance for each school.
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Visit Masik Collegiate Fragrances online at Masik.com to read more about Katie Masik, the chemical engineer (working in the field of energy) fascinated with the science behind sense of smell linked to emotion and memory who turned her passion into a lifelong dream realized. What an inspiring story!
HOW TO ENTER THE GIVEAWAY
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Comment below for a chance to take home one of the scents featured in my review! Please tell me which collegiate fragrance you would love to win. If you could capture memories in a signature fragrance, what scents would you include & what makes them memorable for you?!