Monday, March 30, 2009

Fragrance Bouquet’s Patchouli Top 10 & Sample Raffle

The patchouli reviews behind us, what better way to round off the series with a top 10 of the Fragrance Bouquet favorites! There are still several patchouli scents I haven’t gotten to smell, such as Keiko Mecheri’s Patchoulissime, Villoresi’s Patchouli and Bois 1920’s Real Patchouli just to name a few, but my extensive explorations in the world of patchouli have managed to show me that it can be any number of things: soft, harsh, herbal, leafy, woody, hippie, sensual... Without further ado, here are my own personal patchouli heroes, my favorite 10.

1. L’Inspiratrice by Divine: The one that started it all still retains its place as number one in my heart, even after so many others tried to dethrone it. This is the most voluptuous, round rendition of patchouli I’ve ever encountered. Ultra-feminine, its raison d'être is to seduce and to make the wearer feel beautiful. Marvelous and absolutely recommended.

2. Intrigant Patchouli by Parfumerie Generale: Patchouli Masterpiece. This ultra-animalic potion is sexy, savage and utterly devastating. This is patchouli like you’ve never smelled before: it simply has no twin. Dare to brave its pungency at least once.

3. Harem by LR: This copycat managed to creep up to third place on my list, due its marvelous sex-appeal and its beautiful development which takes it from poisonously sweet gourmand to purring powdery comfort.

4. Lolita Lempicka by Lolita Lempicka: Another gourmand orchestration around the perfect patchouli note, this Angel inspired gem smells like heaven. A compliment magnet if there ever was one!

5. A Taste of Heaven by By Killian: A beautiful combination of lavender, vanilla sweetness and patchouli with an almost barbaric, animalic twist. Its second-skin drydown is to die for.

6. 1826 by Histoires de Parfums: One of the quietest patchouli scents I’ve ever had the pleasure to smell, 1826 stays close to the skin throughout, but gets progressively warmer to reveal a gently animalic, human scent. Its sweet elements give it a delicious undertone which has me compulsively sniffing my wrist whenever I wear it.

7. Fumerie Turque: Dates and sundried plums, leather, the most glorious sweet tobacco note and slightly urinous honey, all enhanced and infused by gorgeous, gorgeous patchouli. Far more intimidating than its better loved cousin Borneo. I didn’t manage to buy this when it was exported and now I’ll have to trek to Paris for it. Full Bottle Worthy for patch and tobacco lovers. (If you test this, give it a fair chance.. the urinous note can be scary, but it smoothes out down the line.)

8. Patchouly by Etro: A lighter interpretation of true patchouli with a marvelous dusty/powdery aspect. Smells best sprayed on fabric and I especially love it on scarves. Unlike many patch-heavy scents, this will actually perform well in warmer weather.

9. Borneo 1834 by Serge Lutens: Probably the most talked-about patchouli scent among fragrance lovers, Borneo 1834 demonstrates the beauty of the patchouli/cacao combination. It is laced with the same sweet tobacco notes that Fumerie Turque uses in abundance.

10. Neonatura Cocoon by Yves Rocher: This recession-friendly gem is utterly comforting and delicious. It combines patchouli with pure chocolate and infuses both with the dark scent of coffee. Yummy!

Which are your own patchouli heroes? Or is patchouli still a villain for you? When commenting you will be automatically entered in a raffle to win a little patchouli sample-pack from me, containing Borneo, Neonatura Cocoon, A Taste of Heaven & Harem.

Images: Superman & Superwoman Flickr by Boss Tweed


41 comments:

Amanda said...

I have really enjoyed this series, and have added most of them to my next sample order!

Amanda said...

Oh, but please still enter me in the raffle, the samples are just still a wishlist not an actual purchase:)

Anonymous said...

I haven't tried any of these, but I do love Patchoulissime. It's beautiful. Please enter me in the raffle; I'd love to try more patchouli fragrances. Thank you!
Molly

ChantillyLace said...

I would love to try these also! I Love Coromandel and Love Spell. Please enter me in the draw. Thanks!

Deanna said...

I don't really have any patchouli heroes but I love the smell! And I'd love to try a little sample pack :)

Anonymous said...

Loved your patchouli series! I actually bought Patchouli Intriguant unsniffed a year ago based on your review. While it's not at all "pungent" or ulra- animalic on me, I love it very well! So thank you for pointing me in the right direction:)
I also like L'Aromarine Patchouli, it's incredibly dark and smokey. You should try that if you haven't yet.
Thanks and I would love to be in the drawing.
Nika

Ines said...

Hmm, I still don't have any patchouli favorites, but from what you wrote I definitely want to try Borneo, Fumerie Turque and Neonatura Cocoon. :)

PinstripedZebra said...

What a completely wacky and so cool picture!

Btw why didn't you link Lolita Lempicka (http://fragrancebouquet.blogspot.com/2008/05/lolita-lempicka-i-love-you-just-way-you.html)? Since you did review it if i remember correctly?

//Z

Jenavira13 said...

Over the hears I have come to respect patchouli, but I wonder often if it is a note I will go look for. Interesting I never get any patchouli from Lolita Lempicka, but I do get vetiver.

waftbyCarol said...

Great series , D.
The long discontinued Gucci No. 1 in the clear bottle
Profumi del Forte Marconi 3 decadent patch and coconut !

Etro Patchouli soon to be added !!

Anonymous said...

You've drug me out of lurkdom with this, Divina! Patchouli has been slowly growing on me, enough so that I'm ready to consider stronger stuff than I've currently tried.

The patchouli in Fumerie Turque is lovely -- not too much. From there, I went to Borneo 1834 and loved the patch-cacao combination. I haven't decided the next step into the depths of patchouli, but the step will be taken.

EileenS

double.bound said...

Loved the series, especially since my experience with patchouli is limited. I do like Taste of Heaven a lot, though.

icequeenaranxta said...

After a very, very bad experience with some incredibly cheap patchouli oil I made the mistake of sniffing on a visit to a New Age shop, I've been too scared to try patchouli. Reading your reviews of various patchouli-based perfumes has reassured me that not all patch sents are the nasal raper that bottle of oil was! I would love to ne entered into the drawing.

Anonymous said...

Next to incense Patchouli is a favorite of mine Love Montales Patchouli Leaves also Fumerie Turque and Cacoon.

Regards,
Nattygold

Karin said...

Oooh! I'm dying to try Borneo. Thanks for offering a raffle, Divina! My fav patchouli scents, well, I admit I'm a longtime Angel fan, but only in moderation and only in certain circumstances. Never in church and never when dining out!!! Ha ha. Much too tenacious. I also love Lolita Lempicka and Flowerbomb, though I don't get much patchouli from either. Coromandel is heaven. But the BEST patchouli scent? When I open up the plastic box that houses all of my Histoires des Parfums samples. Oh my. Wonderful! The paper insert that describes all the scents also smells heavenly. It might be remnants of 1740, but it's probably a combination of all scents swirling up together and wafting deliciously - with patchouli holding everything together.

Chris G said...

What a great series! I love patchouli in MODERATION (too many late '60s memories) and would love to be entered in the draw. Thanks!!

Anonymous said...

I always had a bad impression of patchouli since I associated it with certain types who didn't bathe, but after my entry into the perfume world, I'm beginning to love it! I'd love to be entered in the drawing.

Thanks!
SMY

maitreyi1978 said...

I have the Lolita. I'll be glad to try the others. Please enter me in the draw.

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Divina said...

Amanda, of course :)

Divina said...

Molly, I haven't tried any of Keiko Mecheri's fragrances. Nice to hear Patchoulissime is good! I hope I get to sample them sometime soon, unfortunately I haven't seen them anywhere around here. Will probably end up having to order samples of the whole lot!

Divina said...

ChantillyLace how interesting! I'd never heard of Love Spell, but saw it is by VS after googling. The only one of VS scents I've smelled is Dream Angels Heavenly, which I actually thought was really really nice and feminine. As for Coromandel, it is delicious. Unfortunately it's been too long since I last smelled and did not have a sample at hand so it wasn't part of the series or the top 10. Will need to re-explore it soon. Thank you for reminding me!

Divina said...

Deanna, you're in :)

Divina said...

Oh, Nika, I am so glad the unsniffed purchase worked out!!! Especially when considering PG scents are not exactly wallet-friendly. But it's gorgeous, isn't it? :) Glad you like it!

Divina said...

Ines darling, you're in. Good luck!

Divina said...

Hey Z, sweetie :) Yeah, I didn't link to it cause it wasn't exactly a review, but an article on the flankers and my disapproval of them :P LOL!

Divina said...

Hi Jen! There are certain Lolita flankers which amplify the main notes of the original, and if you want to have Lolita with amplified patchouli the Midnight flanker is the one to go! There is also one in the caprices de lolita (three of them, one amblifying patch, the other the cherry and the other the anise/licorice). In the original one I get all of the notes at once, surprisingly well blended on one hand, but on the other I get them also jumping out individually from time to time. It's peculiar and beautiful. :) I love it when the cherry clearly shows through, cause it's the best cherry I've smelled in perfume actually.

Divina said...

Aaaawwww Carol, I remember Cucci 1 and Gucci 3! I miss them both!

Divina said...

Eileen so glad you delurked!! Looking forward to seeing more of you now! :)

Divina said...

double.bound, so nice to see another Taste of Heaven fan! The By Killian line doesn't get nearly enough love in my opinion! I still have to review the rest of the line *sighs*. Will get to it soon I hope. It's been hectic lately.

Divina said...

icequeenaranxta I am very glad to hear that! It's really hard to escape that association, but what is comforting is that Patch indeed has many different faces and I do think there is a face for everyone! There are some heavyweights out there (like the very vintage-smelling Nombril Immense by Etat Libre d'Orange) but there are also softer, kinder patch 'fumes out there. Once the switch is made though, it is easier to delve into the world of the heavier ones as well, I've found.

Divina said...

Nattygold, Montal is one of my absolutely favorite lines, but I still haven't smelled Patchouli Leaves. Their selection is VAST (the boutique makes you lose your head, especially since they all look alike, LOL!) and few of them get exported here. Planning another trip to Paris soon, so I look forward to visiting the boutique again and testing Patchouli Leaves. Thanks for the recommendation!

Divina said...

Oh, Karin, what a LOVELY description!! Thank you so much for sharing! Yes, HdP makes great use of patchouli and I like their patchouli perfume also (the one from the trio that was released with Pivoine etc...). I haven't reviewed it, but it reminds me of CdG's Luxe Patchouli. They're both salty!

Divina said...

Chris G thank you so much! :) You are of course in :)

Divina said...

SMY LOL! Yeah, I know what you mean... the smell of patchouli/amber incense mixed with unwashed dreadlocks...aaaarrgh! *chuckles*

Divina said...

maitreyi1978 so good to see you again :) You're in!

Prettywitty504 said...

I'm tickled pink to find this blog, being a patchouli fan since the 70's, when I discovered Clinique Aromatics Elixir and have been wearing it almost daily since. I'm always looking for a fragrance with patchouli notes that isn't overbearing, but isn't too floral or delicate, either. Anyway, I really enjoyed the series and all the comments. If anyone has any recommendations about a new fragrance for me, I'd love to hear your suggestions. I also like Shalimar, but only the perfume, not so much the cologne.

Thanks again; this was a lovely diversion.

Divina said...

Mmmmm, Prettywitty, you have excellent taste! I adore Aromatics Elixir and love Shalimar. Saw your other choices in the Change of Heart post and I think you might be my scent twin, LOL! Okay, you *might* like Agent Provocateur (the original, not the flankers) but I think it is inferior to the ones you already use. BUT, I am willing to bet money you are going to find a love in the Sisley line. Eau du Soir and Soir de Lune should both be up your alley! And have you tried Paloma Picasso? Please do. Both the edt and the edp, both are excellent. Of course the pure perfume is also excellent, but hard to find. *hugs* so glad you found your way here :)

Prettywitty504 said...

! I always wanted a twin...

Isa said...

I know the draw is over but I want to give my opinion anyway :)
I'm not a fan of patchouli. It's a note that I usually dislike (I think I could never love something like Comme des Garçonz Luxe Patchouli).

But happily I have found one patchouli scent which I absolutely love: Nombril Immense by État Libre d'Orange. This is so calm and relaxing. Maybe the reason why I love it is that I don't get any patch in it.

Isa

Divina said...

Hi Isa! I'm glad you did :)

Nombril Immense is wonderful! I pushed my mother to buy it for herself cause it smelled so gorgeous on her and she receives so many compliments on it. I do get a lot of patchouli from it but the overall impression is that of a beautiful vintage perfume. (Do you also find it has a 'vintage' quality?) I think it smells beautiful and I love how it changes depending on whether it is sprayed on skin or clothes. (mmm, my mom's coat smells so good because of it....)

Excellent choice!