I can not understand why Hugo Just Different has a rating so controversial. If you open the custom scoring at the top of the page, you will notice a Gaussian distribution; the majority is concentrated in the middle, with lovers and haters equally distributed. This gem has got an estimated 5. Well, I'm the kind of person who respects other opinions. However, I'm not bent out of shape because people do not respect my opinion. I'm used to it. I see so many people fooled on the name "Just Different" as if it were no different, but seriously I do not feel many colognes like this, and it is different from its own perfume house. I like how they played outside their scents and flankers. So, I think to be quite just different to appreciate this cologne and give it a total of 9 out of 10. Why? Please read if you are interested to know it. Please don't get your undies in a bundle; I'm not defending it, I merely wanted to present a theoretical reflection.
Changing the subject, what do Hugo Just Different and L'Eau Bleue d'Issey Pour Homme have in common? Everything and nothing. In theory, the olfactory notes are pretty different; in practice, some chords are very, but very similar. Both have a resinous, nearly medicinal background tone, perhaps due to fir tree wood in the former and cypress in the latter. From the first notes, Just Different reminds me of the medicinal, resinous, and balsamic accents of L'Eau Bleue d'Issey Pour Homme, which is not bad at all and mostly not so ordinary. These two fragrances are not the same, but they do share some communities. Where they differ is the light apple note and the mild woodiness provided by the cashmeran. Hence, Just Different does not mean Just Unique.
It took me a while to get this, but I think I have now. The classic Hugo's canteen bottle this time comes with a blackish matt glass, which might induce you to think about an obscure and mystical scent, a gem, you don't know what to expect will surprise you in a right way.
Just Different unfolds with a blast of fresh, icy, aromatic, and green notes, and the cooling iced mint is quite dominant in this scent, a feature of many of Hugo Boss's scents that is nice. Although this one is all about mint, you don't need to worry because it won't smell like toothpaste to me or a pack of Brooklyn's chewing gum. It's not a sugary mint. Instead, it's subtle and couched in a smell of greenery. At least not the menthol kind that is present in Caron's Anarchist.
Nonetheless, it could be off-putting for someone. But, mint is not a solid note, there is even a pungent and sour-smelling apple note, which smells exactly like a sour green apple jolly rancher candy. Yeah, the apple is a little bitter. Not the apple as you'd expect to attain from Hugo Boss Bottled series. Maybe it's the kicking in of both basil and mint at the same time that lately distracts you from apple.
Strong mint and apple, almost overwhelmingly so at first, but then it transitions into a curious greyish also blunt accord that reminds me of something a bit earthy and balmy, but there is no dryness. That aroma dominates the heart, with mild and dynamic freesia adding a floral facet, the green basil, and other odorous notes clamouring for attention. And the coriander seeds fortify the middle phase.
The base is built on a labdanum skeleton that fleshes out with soft patchouli and soft woody muskiness undertones from cashmeran and incense that intoxicate your mind. It turns off as a sweeter/spicier but not sickly or cloying like Joop!, A* Men or Le Male fragrances with lower flowery but masculine notes. The patchouli seems to give it a bit more body to an otherwise thin or light cologne, preventing Just Different from becoming another "sporty' fragrance. And then there is a big hint of fir, which can be smelt from the beginning through the end,
Longevity is pretty good, sillage is fair, with excellent projection. Strong, confident, and powerful; it is substantial enough to warrant a positive score. It seems to change the style from informal to more formal, with the musky dry-down. It has the DNA of the original Hugo Man, though it takes a more refined and subtler turn. Lovely little Spring and Fall scent, in my opinion, it is a safe scent to wear at the office. So I can confirm it is a hidden gem as I stated before, and undervalued in my opinion. Still, I am glad the fact it is underrated, so it stays as individual as it is born to be, and surely it is different and immeasurable different.
Stay well; stay healthy.