Caron 3ème Homme merges two of my interests – perfume and film noir. And not just any perfume, 80’s masculines, a “genre” that I adore. Caron 3ème Homme is inspired by The Third Man, a late 1940’s British film noir by Carol Reed. This film is one that some say “epitomizes” the genre and it has a strong cast with Orson Welles and Alida Valli. If you haven’t seen it, watch it.
This fragrance opens with a blast of licorice lemon. It’s a balance of warm and cool with anise and lavender. This top sparkles like champagne and burns off rather quickly because of the aldehydes. And then I’m left with a jasmine fougère. It’s like “fern indoles” with a spiced carnation. I find it interesting because the heart of this fragrance is mainly floral but I would never consider Le 3ème Homme a feminine fragrance. The fougère-ness is obviously masculine and the raunchy indoles make it unique. The base is a traditional masculine warm tonka-musk and woods, slightly smoky and irresistible.
Without getting too involved with the movie, The Third Man, I do want to say that I see this fragrance as the Orsen Welles character in the movie. He was a man in hiding. Le 3ème Homme starts off as strong, showy, powerful fragrance and then it mellows out… like a man in the shadows. You know he is there but at the same time you aren’t certain. The heart of this fragrance is polished. It contains a million notes and it’s difficult to recognize. All of these notes also play with people’s perceptions. I see the heart as floral but not feminine. Others see it as spicy or feminine and sometimes sweet. Is this character good or bad? Who is this man? What is this fragrance? And then Le 3ème Homme has a traditional masculine base. This fragrance twists and turns and it all works out wonderfully.
Notes listed include lavender, rosemary, anise, bergamot, geranium, jasmine, rose, carnation, amber, musk, moss, cedarwood, patchouli, tonka and vanilla.
I think Le 3ème Homme is a great “work” scent for men. That is if you spray lightly! Remember this a mid-80’s masculine! It’s polished but approachable and inoffensive but not boring. Try this if you want a traditional fragrance that isn’t too popular. Show this Caron some love.
One of the great things about Le 3ème Homme is that you can find huge bottles of this stuff for dirt cheap on discount sites like Fragrancenet, Perfume.com, and Perfume Worldwide. It is very common to find a 4.2 oz bottle for under $30. You can smell great for cheap.
Victoria’s Final EauPINION – A dapper but not dandy blend of lavender, licorice, and “fern indoles” over a traditional masculine base. I think all men need this in their fragrance wardrobe. Even if all men won’t agree with me.
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