Product Review: Viktor & Rolf Spicebomb Fragrance

viktor & rolf spicebomb 01

Name: Spicebomb
Brand: Viktor & Rolf
Size: 1.7oz
Price: $75.00

What I liked:
– cozy and sophisticated tobacco ambery scent
– suitable for any occasion
– although not feminine, could be worn by women too
– good sillage and staying power

What I didn’t like:
– not particularly adventurous
– packaging looks tacky in real life

Flowerbomb is such a big success that it was only a matter of time before Victor & Rolf came up with a masculine version. Frankly, I’m surprised it took them this long (Flowerbomb was released in 2005). An explosion of sweet flowers for men would hardly do, so the designer duo opted for its masculine equivalent: spices.

Spicebomb has a couple of things in common with its sister. First of all, the packaging. They both resemble a hand granade, but while the pink bottle of Flowerbomb looks edgy and rock chic, the dark one that houses Spicebomb looks quite tacky. Some people also find it in bad taste. I’m not offended by it, I just think it looks horrible. But it’s juice inside that really matters, right?

viktor & rolf spicebomb 02

Just like Flowerbomb is supposed to be an explosion of flowers but smells like candy instead, the spiciness of Spicebomb is so toned down that you can smell it only in its top notes. Instead, it is more of an ambery tobacco scent. I wasn’t expecting to like it as I hate Flowerbomb, but it’s lovely and very well-done. I’m thinking of buying a bottle for the boyfriend for Christmas so that I can nick it (well, he’s always nicking my bath stuff), as it smells great on women too.

When I first sprayed Spicebomb on, my nose was hit by a loud whiff of clove. Clove is not listed in the official notes, and no other review I’ve read mentions it, but that doesn’t mean my nose was playing tricks on me. Your body chemistry can affect the way perfume smells on you, accentuating or bringing out different facets on different people. I can only tell you how it smells on me, but you may experience something different.

In any case, the strong and spicy aroma of clove dissipates within a couple of minutes, leaving the stage to a cool and sharp citrusy accord sprinkled with fruity pink pepper and sweet cinnamon. It’s warm, suave and sweet, but not in a candied or feminine way. Soon, this accord vanishes too. Tobacco, too impatience to wait till the base notes to make an entrance, is joined by amber.

viktor & rolf spicebomb 03

The pipe tobacco here has a certain sweetness to it. It’s pervasive, but not very pungent and smokey. On the contrary, it’s quite mild and pleasant. It’s slightly peppered at first, and accentuated by little dabs of saffron and elemi that give it an interesting vibe.They also prevent the amber from becoming too sweet, making sure the scent always remains on the masculine end of the spectrum.

Tobacco and amber still remain at the center of the stage during the drydown too. But now, their sweetness is tamed by smokey leather and dark, metallic vetiver. Spicebomb is a cozy and cuddly, elegant and sophisticated scent that can be worn both for casual and business occasions. It’s not particularly adventurous or original, but very well-executed and easy to enjoy.

Although the sillage is good, it’s not explosive. I wouldn’t recommend using more than one light spritz, but the blast of spices, tobacco and amber is not as loud as the name implies. The staying power, while great, is not outstanding either. I get about 8 hours of wear, which is not bad at all, but well, I expected more from a scent like this, you know?

Available at: amazon and nordstrom

Viktor & Rolf Spicebomb is a warm, cozy and sophisticated ambery tobacco scent with a spicy touch. Although it has good sillage, it’s not as explosive as the name implies. Staying power is great too.

Rating: 4/5

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    • beautifulwithbrains says

      Icaria, this is a really nice scent indeed and could easily be worn by women too.

      I’m glad you like Flowerbomb. Sadly, it doesn’t agree with my body chemistry and smells awful on me.

  1. Janessa says

    I quite like Spicebomb and I loved Flowerbomb when I first smelled it and had no knowledge of fragrances whatsoever. Needless to say, that was before I found your blog!
    Now I still do like Flowerbomb very much, but I prefer to layer it with other more unique scents so I get some more depth to it.

    • beautifulwithbrains says

      Janessa, I’m glad you like Flowerbomb and have found ways to give it more depth. On me, it just doesn’t work. Spicebomb, on the other hand, is a lot more interesting.

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