Sometimes, the house of Diptyque, to me, seems to always be an afterthought. I have a ot of their perfumes in my wardrobe but never wear them. Still, I like almost every release they have – they may not always be the most exciting or unique releases but they are always solid releases.
Their new offering, Orpheon, is just as good. I like its back story – the scent is inspired by a Parisian Bar of the same name, which sits at the corner of 34 Boulevard Saint-Germaine and rue de Pantoieis, which is not far from the Paris Diptyuque store. The founders of Diptyque used to frequent that bar and wanted to pay tribute to it.
And you know what? The perfume is a great representation of it. It starts with a juniper berry blast (perhaps a drink of choice) then settles to a cedar-y powdery middle. I imagine myself at the bar, intermingling with sophisticated Parisians with their scents, women and their powdered foundations, and it’s all so chic and classy. And you know the best thing about Orpheon? It smells like a real perfume. You carry it with you, it has personality and it has flair. It’s really wonderful and unique and I want a full bottle now.
When I was a kid, I used to use this Chinese Sandalwood soap named Maxim, and whenever I did, it always felt so luxurious – it smelled so different than my regular soap that I would savor the soap and use it till the last wax drop. So ever since then, I have always liked the scent of sandalwood, even if I didn’t know what sandalwood was. So of course, I have a couple of sandalwood perfumes. I was opening up my stash of scents from storage and chanced upon Tam Dao, which is the Diptyque contribution to the sandalwood note. I have this old huge bottle from years ago – I got it from the Diptyque Sample Sale and is (i Think) the 8 oz version. It’s massive, and now and again I wonder if it has gotten bad.
I wonder now. The sandalwood is still very potent, and there is that inimitable cedar mix in there, but the one thing I noticed is that it sprayed very warm. I have to see if a ‘fresh’ one will have the same effect on me, but that was my first impression. I need to keep on using this now while it is still serviceable.
I have been fascinated with perfume since I was a teenager in the 80s, and of course, I didn’t know then what I knew now – I was wearing a lot of the fougeres from the Men’s Department – your Aramis, your Drakkar Noir. To this day, when I smell those scents, I get instantly brought back to the me of those days, though I really do nto have any of those scents (I’d kill for vintage Aramis, though)
Diptyque’s new ‘Eau de Minthe’ reminds me of those perfumes, and right now I don’t knwo if that is a good or bad thing. I am wearing it now, and it wears like a classic fougere – herbaceous and aromatic. I smell the greenery right away, with that mint on top (and patchouli in the background) and amber woody heart that is not uncommon with a lot of men’s colognes. This is the second wearing for me and I am surprised I like it much better than the first time I wore it (My Uber driver gave me compliment as soon as I got in his car) but I don’t know – am I warming up to this because I haven’t really worn anything similar in a while? It also seems so un-Diptyque. It skews quite masculine, though I would say the quality is there (massive sillage, wort-it longevity) So two wearings in, I am still kind of resisting it, though my nose says go for it. Fraghead problems, I know.
I was trying to figure out what the flower is on Diptyque’s ‘Fleur de peau’ when I first spritzed it, when I realized it was iris – the paper-y kind (I always joke it smells like a library) and as I processed the perfume, I asked myself, do I need another iris scent? I mean, does the world need another iris scent?
Apparently I do, because I liked Fleur de Peau…a lot. It is light and airy but gives a very potent impression – the iris is joined by some sweet rose, and angelica, and some ambrette – it all blends very gauzy, as if you were wearing a veil. It all comes done to a musk base, but a clean one. Normally, I am not a fan of these clean white musks, but here there is enough of the flowers to make it work/ Perhaps I am getting older, as I probably would have thought this a ‘safe’ scent maybe ten years ago. But this is Diptyque, and you can really smell the quality of the perfume. This stays close to my skin, and I wish it projected more, but don’t get me wrong, I would be happy to wear this every day. This perfume marks the house’s 50th anniversary of its first perfume, and it’s a silent beauty.
I love the house of Diptyque. They may not have the most groundbreaking scents (though at one point, they were the niche of all niche brands) but their scents are always reliable, well-made, and, above all, they smell wonderful on me. Whenever I wear any of them, I get tons of compliments. And I am always excited whenever they launch new scents, like Tempo.
At first smell, you would think that this is just your run-of-the-mill patchouli, made to smell ‘glamorous.’ And I have to admit in the beginning, I thought the same. But like a lot of perfumes from this house, there is a lot of depths in their scents and you find there is more to them than meets the nose. There’s a boat load of bergamot in the top here that gives it freshness, and then there’s sage and even hints violet leaf and rose to round up the patchouli’s dirtiness. I have worn my sample for three days now (imagine me, using a vial for three days?) and it’s masculine without showing too much machismo, perfect for daywear and the office. It’s safe enough to wear with mixed company but you can still feel you are wearing something beautiful. I want a bottle.
Every year around the Holidays, Diptyque releases a fragrance based on a good harvest from their personal gardens called ‘Essences Insesee.’ Lat year, it was a a wondrous jasmine, and for this year, it is from a particular wonderful batch of Rose de Mai from Grasse. Rose de Mai is a big and juicy rose, and it is quite rich anf pungent.
I was lucky enough to be gifted this for Christmas and I just cannot get enough of this perfume. First of all, look at the beautiful bottle. I am a sucker for poofy spray, and look at the poof on this year’s version – fun and glamorous! Signed by Francis pellegrin, Rose de Mai is a fun rose – it sparkles but not too boozy, it’s not a sedate English rose, and it has none of the spice and darkness of other roses. This is a bright smelling juice, a pick me up, and it has honey and some berries to give it weight and volume. It’s a very happy scent – perfect for those dull and gray days. This is a wonderful scent, and one of my favorite acquisitions from this year.
Perhaps you will ask me – another rose scent? Don’t you have enough? I think the real perfume lover in me comes out when I have scents with the same central notes – identifying the nuances and differences on each one scintillates me, and just enhances my love and passion for perfume more. So who cares if this is my nth rose sscent? Give me a thousand more and I will enjoy all of them!
Do you like tobacco note, but think it may be too rough, too manly? Well, Diptyque’s Volutes is the probably the perfume for you. The other day, I was wearing Tom Ford’s Tobacco Vanille and I was again admiring its richness and depth, and as I wear Volupte tonight, my initial reaction is that this is no match for Tom Ford’s masterpiece. But as Volupte lingers on my skin, I begin to admire it for its softer virtues. About an hour after I put it on, the tobacco is faint, happy to be in the background btu still exerting its presence. What is more appealing for me is the iris note that takes center stage. It’s pretty. That’s the only way I could describe it – its a half-bloom unobnoxious note that’s timid and shy, but has presence. And the tobacco gives it weight. As a house, Diptyque seems to be more mainstream than niche nowadays, akin to say, Tocca. They make pretty, interesting but safe and some say uninspired scents. Volutes seems to have been made with a target market in mind: those seeking for unobtrusive perfumes that can claim “edgy” notes like tobacco. It;s not that I won’t wear this, but it seems if you want mid-range perfumes with tobacco notes, you get better choices in the market (Spicebomb or Burburry London men, for example) Diptyque Volutes i in the higher end of the spectrum, but less imaginative.