This is one of those fragrances where I hate the opening but love the late dry down, making me happy I keep stuff around rather than scrubbing at the first sign of displeasure. Intimus by Navitus Parfums (2019) is part of the launch collection curated by Steven from Redolessence, a popular YouTube reviewer-cum-influencer who typically has little to say negatively about most fragrance he discusses, and instead tries to just objectively break down everything. There’s a bit of merit in that, but it lends no insight into what he truly enjoys in a fragrance, so seeing these Navitus Parfums scents at least gives us a bit of an answer, even if creativity is capped somewhat by the evident “built for cost” nature of the line (in spite of the price tag). With Intimus, we have a bit of a mixed bag categorically, but this is generally a sweet fragrance.
The opening is very much like a Jean-Paul Gaultier Ultra Mâle (2015) or adjacent style, which is an instant groan for me, hence resisting the temptation to scrub. The bubblegum ethyl maltol sweetness and fruit accords mixed with pink pepper overload me fast, but after about ten minutes, something more enjoyable emerges with sort of gourmand semi-oriental fougère hybrid, seeing muguet and geranium mix with some candied amber and vanilla in the heart. The base is where things get really interesting, as a (rectified) oakmoss sets up with patchouli and for once in the entire line thus far a woody cedar note that actually smells like wood. This strange mature turn near the end pulls its own ass out of the fire for sure, remaining mildly sweet but cozy and aromatic for the day-long duration. Sillage closes in after 30 minutes, which is also when that hellish opening dies. Best use is fall through spring, in casual settings.
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again that $130+ for 50ml of extrait is still a poor deal when perceived materials quality and blending is this poor, effectively being barely above the modern designer standard. Considering designer parfum concentrations are about the same price for double the juice, Navitus is only for the Redolessence fans looking to support their hero (by way of a SPIFF or commission I’m sure), because you can do way better for the money. That said, I like the smell Intimus ultimately comes but am not particularly happy about the journey there, so I wouldn’t get this at any price but can see some using “ends justify the means” logic and dealing with it. Christian Carbonnel was allowed to play with fire here and for that I give props from an artistic perspective, but feel indifferent about wearing an overpriced modern clubber with middling quality and 80’s fougère underpinnings. Neutral.