Viktor & Rolf Spicebomb EDT Fragrance Review

Viktor Rolf Spicebomb

Mainstream Monday – Sniffing a Popular Perfume

Today I’m going to review a fragrance who’s packaging has probably put more people in detention than anything else: Viktor & Rolf Spicebomb. It seems like every six months there is a story that hits the news regarding someone held by TSA for suspicious goods only to find out it’s a bottle of Spicebomb¹.

I hate the bottle. And I’m not really the demographic for Spicebomb so I’ve never tried it. However, it gets brought up a lot in forums and compared to things both designer and niche. My ignorance no longer benefits me. I pledged that in 2017 that I’m going to try to sniff more of the perfumes that Perfume People *should* know.

Spicebomb opens with bright citrus and citrus-y resins. Speaking in notes, I mainly pickup on a fruity-sweet pink pepper and glimmering, lemon-scented elemi incense. It’s spicy, which I expected from its name. But, it’s not as spicy as I expected. The cinnamon isn’t straight-forward. It’s more like grapefruit sprinkled with warmth from cinnamon and dried Guajillo chilis. It’s also sweet and creamy without smelling like a gourmand. It’s almost like saffron steamed milk and unsmoked cigars stored in a wood cigar box. The dry-down is soft, powdery and sweet. It’s that “modern man” blend of suede, tobacco and a pillow-soft musk. Overall, it’s a dry, warm, spicy, sweet and creamy fragrance that smells like someone that would give really comforting hugs. It smells like a hunky gingerbread man.

When I had David wear this, his skin amped up a lot of benzoin and heliotrope. It was like a powdery, almond-y floral! In his words, he said “This smells like something you wear'”. But the funny thing is it doesn’t smell like something I’d wear because it smells completely different on me. On me, it smelled like something he’d wear! Either “version” is nice though and a million times better than Flowerbomb (or at least how Flowerbomb wears on me). 

Stalag 17

Notes listed include bergamot, grapefruit, elemi, pink pepper, chili, saffron, leather, tobacco and vetiver. Launched in 2012. PERFUMER – Olivier Polge

Give Spicebomb a try if you like woodsy, spicy scents. Or fragrances like Histoires de Parfums 1899 Hemingway, Bvlgari Man in Black, Marc Jacobs Bang and/or Hermès Hermèssence Poivre Samarcande . Spicebomb reminds me of a more masculine version of Lolita Lempicka Si Lolita (which is a surprisingly butch gingerbread fragrance). I actually think that on David, Spicebomb smells a lot like Si Lolita.

Projection and longevity are above average. But, it’s never really “loud”. It’s softer than the name implies.

Viktor & Rolf Spicebomb comes in a few sizes. The 1.7 oz bottle retails for $92 at Nordstrom. Sometimes it can be found at discounters like

Victoria’s Final EauPINIONHunky gingerbread man. It’s a spicy, sweet tobacco crowd pleaser. I actually hate that I like it because of the tacky bottle and its immense popularity. But, hey, I’m only human. This stuff smells great. I’ve also this: I have smelled it on many men and was tempted to ask them what they were wearing but didn’t want to come across like cougar. Now I know. It was Spicebomb.

¹There are so many of these type of stories! It’s such a stupid bottle design.

Want more reviews? Try…

Bois de Jasmin

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*Sample obtained by me. Product pic from Amazon. “Stalag 17” still from

7 thoughts on “Viktor & Rolf Spicebomb EDT Fragrance Review

  1. I spray myself with this from time to time when I’m in the frag section of the local department store. I find it very comforting and cozy, but yeh stupid bottle.

    1. It really exceeds my expectations. I thought it was going to be another cliche masculine of like a spicy black pepper, sharp woods and generic “clean”. Nope, it’s actually really cozy.

      We joked (well only slightly joked, it’s the truth) that this is like the bottle design of white privilege. There’s a long list of people in the US that would probably be shot if they just held this bottle 🙁

  2. I liked this one as well! I think it was the saffron-y note that cinched it for me. I’ve only worn it a couple of times because, as you noticed too, it’s just the slightest bit more masculine on me than I expect from just smelling it on paper, but I really wish I knew a hunky gingerbread man who wore it. So I just spray it into the air once in a while and enjoy the experience that way.
    And you know how I worked around the stupid bottle design? I overpaid and bought the travel spray bottle, which is shaped differently.
    And yes, a million million times better than Flowerbomb gah!

    1. A friend of mine said that the saffron is much more apparent on his skin than the testers at Casa de EauMG. I sprayed it on paper and it’s deliciously spicy (saffron, pink pepper and cardamom?). Anyway, all the variations have been nice.

      Actually, I’m 100% done with using this as a room spray/linen spray. I love how it smells but I don’t want to be stuck with commitment of wearing it. But, D says he’s interesting in buying a bottle for himself so I guess I’ll get to smell it that way.

      YES! I even linked to Nordstrom and didn’t realize it comes in a travel size (until your comment) that isn’t in the grenade bottle. That bottle is actually cute.

      I know Flowerbomb can work for some people but I’m not in that group. It is actually wretched on me. My skin makes it sharp/sour. Flowerbomb hates me.

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