A cheaper alternative manages to best its progenitor.
I’ve made no secret of thinking that YSL’s popular Tuxedo scent is vastly overrated.
It’s eye-wateringly expensive for a blend that underperforms and is, to my nose, unbalanced.
I wasn’t a big fan of the composition itself, and as such I didn’t go hunting for cheaper alternatives.
However, when I was told that Rochas’ Moustache did everything that Tuxedo could do (and more) at a third of the price, it piqued my interest.
While thinking Tuxedo‘s profile wasn’t worth its price, the price of Moustache is a field I could see the composition playing in.
So I had a try.
And I was pleasantly surprised.
Author’s note: I tried the eau de parfum version.
The initial spray of Moustache reveals a character that does seem almost identical to Tuxedo at a glance.
However, where Tuxedo overwhelms me with a sickly sweetness and pepperiness within thirty seconds, I found the blend of Moustache to be much more pleasantly tempered.
The idea is the same, and the character is indeed a near splitting image DNA-wise, however I could wear this scent without suffering.
I did enjoy the later stages of Tuxedo‘s evolution, however I couldn’t justify my olfactory system suffering for hours just to enjoy the lovely dried down ending.
Moustache made the journey much easier.
I love the bottle, too.
It’s built like a tank, and would deal some damage if you dropped it on yourself.
The deco styling is very appealing to me.
I’d almost be tempted to buy a bottle just to look at it on the shelf.
I’m a sucker for old-world charm.
It’s quite an interesting exercise to compare the two different note list citations of these two remarkably similar fragrances.
These are shown below:
Violet, Bergamot, Coriander seed
Rose, Lily of the Valley, Black Pepper
Ambergris, Patchouli, Bourbon Vanilla
Pink pepper, Mandarin
Benzoin, Vanilla, Patchouli
From this, we can extrapolate what works better for me in the Moustache blend compared to that of Tuxedo.
The usage of pink pepper is much better to my nose than the black pepper, which I found particularly unpleasant in Tuxedo.
Also, using pepper in the top rather than the heart allows for a punch of spice rather than the ongoing barrage of peppery spice I experienced with the YSL offering.
I also liked the use of the woody element cedar with the Moustache blend, dialling back the characteristic uppercut of florals in Tuxedo; which, combined with the black pepper, were my main gripes.
The simplicity of the rose and cedar heart in Moustache is refreshing.
In fact, the relative simplicity used to achieve the same character is perhaps the reason I prefer Moustache so.
The one element where I think Tuxedo slightly wins out is in the base.
The ambergris gave it a much more buttery smoothness, where the benzoin in Moustache is a little less characterful.
However, that’s no saving grace for Tuxedo.
I got very good performance from Moustache, with eight to nine hours.
Projection was also a strong suit for this fragrance. Spray with caution.
Blend Quality: 1/1
I really can’t fault the execution of the blend.
It’s a laudable job to beat a much higher priced scent at its own game, with a third of the price.
The deco styling really does it for me here.
Personal Smell Score: .8/1
The overall character still isn’t a total love for me, but this one is a far sight better than its competitor.
Total score: 4.2/5 A-
What Would I Wear This With?
Like with Tuxedo, Moustache is well suited to a tailored outfit.
Cooler weather fits are preferable, due to the character of the scent.
It’s a cosy scent so knitwear will do well in particular.
I wouldn’t pair it with black tie.
It’s too loud.
It’s undoubtably clear to me that Moustache is the one to buy if you want to have the scent profile.
Not only is it much better value for money, but it does the job better.
While I wouldn’t buy it myself, I wouldn’t tell anybody else not to buy it.
If you do; wear it well, and wear it in good health.