Dunhill Signature Wide

Released way back in 2003, Dunhill Signature was the brand’s new eponymous fragrance that is also sometimes referred to as “Dunhill For Men”, “Dunhill Man”, or even “Dunhill Brown”. However, it shouldn’t be confused with the iconic 1934 Dunhill For Men that is still in production today!

In this review, you will discover what we shall refer to as Dunhill Signature with a focus on the following topics:

Use the links to jump ahead or scroll on to read more.

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Overview

  • Brand: Dunhill
  • Fragrance: Dunhill / Brown / Signature / For Men
  • Concentration: Eau de Toilette
  • Release Year: 2003
  • Batch: 2013
  • Olfactive Fragrance Family: Woody Floral Musk
  • Related Fragrances: Aramis, Tabac Original
  • Price On Amazon: $35 for 75 ml [Buy Now]

Unfortunately, Dunhill Signature’s name is a somewhat grey area. We’ve cross-checked a number of sources, which each describe the same fragrance but give it a different name. So far, we’ve found simply “Dunhill”, “Dunhill Brown”, “Dunhill Signature”, and “Dunhill for Men”.

Although production appears to have ceased since its release in 2003, Dunhill Signature is still easy to find. Its nose was Michel Almairac, a renowned creator whose iconic accomplishments include Joop! Homme and Christian Dior’s Fahrenheit. Today, he is celebrated for his Mercedes, Porsche and Bentley creations.

Dunhill Signature Sky Background

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Dunhill Signature 2003 Composition

After a somewhat overwhelming head, Dunhill Signature features a soft and sweet yet overtly gourmand bouquet. While some suggest that this is an oriental woody, its notes indicate a character closer to a Woody Floral Musk.

Dunhill Signature in Hand

Head Notes

  • Lavender
  • Lemon
  • Geranium

Signature begins with a shaky start due to a sharp and toe-curling head that consists of lavender, lemon, and eventually some geranium. The resulting accord is overly strong, heady, and frustratingly cloying. However, it’s short-lived before almost immediately transitioning to the heart.

Heart Notes

  • Orris Root
  • Cedar Wood
  • Rose

Once the head has quickly evaporated, Signature reveals a pleasant note of orris root. Its sweet and soft aromas are reminiscent of fresh laundry, which is extended by a hint of cedar wood.

Meanwhile, a touch of rose adds a floral hint to the overall accord. At this stage, the fragrance has become pleasantly inoffensive with a slightly powdery vintage soap property.

Base Notes

  • Tonka Bean
  • Oak Moss
  • Ambergris

As the fragrance transitions towards the base, its powdery character increases. While still a generally soapy fragrance, it develops a more gourmand accord, which consists of a rich tonka bean note.

As this happens, fresh oak moss adds and earthy aromatic aroma that contrasts against a leathery ambergris musk.

Signatures’s Life-Cycle, Wake & Strength

As noted above, the opening wasn’t a particularly pleasant experience yet this fortunately faded with remarkable haste. Following that, the heart to base transition was surprisingly subtle and slow to truly reveal itself.

In terms of performance, the fragrance has a limited sillage, which provides little trail for the wearer. Similarly, the projection is concentrated and generally quite mild. As for the longevity, Signature gives an average performance that fades into a skin scent before lunchtime if it’s applied first thing in the morning.

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What People Think Of Dunhill Signature

Dunhill Signature Close-UpLike many Dunhill fragrances, Signature tends to be a divided fragrance. Nevertheless, it is generally regarded as a pleasant and inoffensive perfume. Indeed, its powdery and musky properties seem to resonate with certain people.

Still, most people admitted that they found it pretty generic and lacking in character. Generally, it appeared to be more appreciated by men than women. Although women didn’t find it unpleasant, they didn’t quite find it particularly attractive either.

Furthermore, there seemed to be a general consensus that this fragrance was quite retro in character and not what you would expect in 2003. While some people enjoy this vintage vibe, it doesn’t sit well with everyone and some even consider it quite dated.

When To Wear Dunhill Signature

Dunhill Signature DetailFirstly, Signature’s gourmand and powdery properties make this an ideal autumn or winter fragrance. Thanks to the use of soft and sweet notes, it settles well in both seasons. By mid-spring, the fragrance may start to feel out of place and it isn’t quite compatible with summer.

While Signature can be worn throughout the day, it has a character that is more appropriate for the evening without being a nighttime fragrance. Indeed, it would be an interesting choice for a dinner out but there are probably better options if you’re looking for a dating fragrance.

In terms of the age best suited for wearing this fragrance, the retro connotations would render it more appropriate for men who are at least in their thirties and up. In fact, it could be happily worn by men in their forties or fifties.

As for the occasion, this is an overall casual fragrance. However, its inoffensive properties make it a better choice of the office. That said, it’s a good weekend fragrance for when lounging about too.

Finally, this a moderately masculine fragrance. By that we mean that it’s not overbearing with heavy musks nor is it faint with a more unisex or feminine feel to it.

Presentation and Value For Money

Dunhill Signature AtomiserDunhill Signature was one of the first bottles to use this particular automobile-inspired bottle design. However, it would occasionally be used again for future fragrances over the next few years. Indeed, its design is original, recognisable and relatively ergonomic when you get used to it.

It can be comfortably held in the palm. Make sure, though, that the atomiser is near the fingers rather than the thumb or its impossible to press the atomiser! Speaking of which, the atomiser works well and provides a thick, short-ranged spray.

Unfortunately, I seem to have misplaced the packaging so I won’t be able to comment on that as accurately as I’d like. As I recall, it has a somewhat retro brown box that isn’t too different to Tabac Original.

Finally, the value for money seems to be quite worthwhile. Although this isn’t exactly an earth-shattering fragrance, it’s far from expensive. In fact, it can be picked up for around $35 online if you know where to look. Therefore, it’s a decent option to have on-hand if you’re on a relatively tight budget.

Closing Thoughts

Even when it was released over 15 years ago, it appears that Dunhill Signature was already a retro fragrance! While it may not appeal to everyone, it does set it apart as an original and surprising fragrance to add to a collection.

Indeed, it’s a fragrance that is strongly reminiscent of creations like Tabac Original as mentioned above. However, it’s more powdery and offers a modern gourmand experience too.

Dunhill Signature may not be a must-have fragrance but it’s also not a bad purchase either. Given its low price point and pleasant aromas, it’s a good option to add to your rotation.

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Dunhill Signature 2003
Reviewed by Charles-Philippe, on .
"An inoffensive powdery fragrance for men. While not a particularly world-changing fragrance, Dunhill Signature is still a pleasant and easygoing fragrance for a tight budget."
Rating: 4.0 ★★★★

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