Background into Ard Al Zaafaran
Ard Al Zaafaran is a Dubai based manufacturer of some very affordable fragrances. Prices vary depending on location, but you can usually pick up their fragrances for very cheap online on Amazon or eBay. This house is gaining popularity within the fragrance scene as the quality and longevity of their scents is not at all reflected in their price. They do make some popular ‘clones’ (such as this one) that are very much respected for offering a similar scent profile for a much lower price proposition than the ‘original’ scent.
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For a fragrance that can be had for under £20 here in the UK, the presentation and bottle is pleasantly surprising. The box has some very clear Arabic, ornamental styling. Whether you’re a fan of the black and gold or not, the bottle feels weighty and sturdy and the spray the mist produces is adequate.
The fragrance even comes with a 50 ml deodorant that had a similar scent to the fragrance (but a bit more on the dark chocolaty side). I won’t go into the deodorant on this review but will say it’s a welcome touch that definitely projects in the initial spay but doesn’t last very long.
Now for the smell | Fragrance Notes
Top notes: Jasmine, Gardenia, Blackcurrant, Lemon, Bergamot, Mandarin, Tuber
Heart notes: Orchid, Spicy notes, Fruity notes,
Lotus Base notes: Vetiver, Patchouli, Sandalwood, Incense, Amber, Chocolate, Vanille
Top notes: Dark chocolate, Mandarin Orange, Bergamot
Mid notes: Spicy notes, Fruity notes, Gardenia,
This fragrance has been known in the community as a copy of Tom Ford Black Orchid, leaning slightly more on the masculine side in my opinion due to the different direction using more bergamot. I can say this does smell similar, incredible quality for it’s price but Black Orchid does smell richer, more expensive and does last longer too.
It’s dark chocolate, spicy sweetness is pure lust, and one that will be appreciated. You will smell different, more mature, and interesting with this.
We all know how important Black Orchid (BO) is in Tom Ford’s lineup and how amazing a creation it is, which is why I praise Oud 24 Hours. For the mere price of usually under £15, you get an incredible smelling fragrance, regardless of being a clone. You could buy this and claim to others you are wearing the more expensive Black Orchid if you wanted, you really need to be accustomed to the way BO develops and smells from start to finish, or have both fragrances side-by-side to tell the difference.
Longevity & Projection
I’ve worn this fragrance quite a few times just at home for testing and have worn it on a couple occasions in the office. My spray routine which consists of 3 sprays, 2 behind each ear and 1 to the back of the neck was enough. I wouldn’t go overboard with this one, 3 sprays max. This fragrance will last and can fill a room from initial spray.
Projection wise, sprayed on my skin and clothing even from a distance for the first 2 hours people will definitely be able to smell you. I found after 2 hours someone sitting next to you say next to your desk or on a bus would still be able to get a good whiff. After 6 hours this becomes a skin scent. I am extremely pleased with this one’s performance.
This fragrance is not for everyone (just like the original Tom Ford Black Orchid), you have to be a confident individual who is not afraid of standing out, and I would say this should be worn dressed up.
One for the colder temperatures and could work in the office (if you are extremely confident) and a definite pick on a date. Although again to me Oud 24 Hours is slightly more masculine (emphasis on the slightly) than Black Orchid, you do have to be wary of some people thinking this is a fragrance suitable for a mature woman. I say it’s completely unisex and for people who are looking for a more artistic, mature scent. Great on the wallet and will last a long while due to its potency.
The Cologne Guy verdict
Price: Between £13 to £20