Serge Lutens El Attarine and Dianne Brill

Lee already did a great review on Serge Lutens El Attarine, but I got some different mojo from it, so I just have to comment on my, um, experience.  Am I the only person getting a healthy dose of MKK on the open under the ethereal boisees series?  Yes?  It’s a heady mix, like hot, sweaty sex in the forest.  Is this how moose feel?  I mean, damn, this starts out fierce on me, and it is the open that I completely have fallen in love with  – the perfect blend of naughty and rutting nature.  It’s just charmed the pants off me because it has enough  of all the boisees in there to distract me from that funkiness going on under it, but all of that going on underneath never strays from my mind.  The longer it’s on, the less overtly saucy it gets, but that almost makes it more sensual, not less.  Less is the new more.

Chandler Burr has already reviewed the new Dianne Brill perfume, and he notes from Brill that the smells she was going for were leather, wood, figs, the smell of Cuba, old books, and nutmeg.  Brill herself writes some horrible copy about not wanting to give notes, that you must experience it melting, blah, blah,blah.  If I never have to read another one of these horrible perfume pitches screaming for attention like Lindsey Lohan withing 50 yards of a camera, it won’t be too soon. 

Burr likens it to Ambre Narguile on Nitrous Oxide.  Oh-kay….  On me it has the resemblance of something more traditional on the open, but quickly veers off into some completely new territory, then back to traditional fruity-ish floral, then completely heads down the path of something far more interesting.  I get a little of the ozonic quality that has been mentioned in passing in comments on other blogs at first, but that lasts not at all in any noticeable way.  Once it starts to settle, then that leather shows up, but it’s slightly rubbery, and I mean that in a good way.  Librarian meets rubber pants?  But no Ambre Narguile in sight.  There is a gourmandish aspect to it, even though I can’t quite figure out what note is causing that or if it’s just the combination of notes that twirls it away from fruity floral into rubbery gourmand.  There in the background is something closer to a mainline fruity floral scent, just jacked up –  emulating it, but not, and then giggling when you notice.

  • Disteza says:

    OK, so I finally tried the El Attarine on. Hoo boy, what a horror show. I like ’em skanky, but this just smelled BAD on me. I believe it’s the sandalwood, which almost always curdles on my skin into something inexpressably rank–I get the same effect from Santal de Mysore. Here, however, the cumin chimes in and amps up the BO factor. Then, to add insult, once the funk finally dies down I’m left with nothing–no boisees, no incense, just a trace of something that smells like it was fermenting in the gutters for a season. :((

  • Mary says:

    I ordered a small sample of this from the perfumed court. I LOVE it! Now, where do I buy it? I googe and only come up with that it is a non export? Do I need french friends to get it? Help!

  • March says:

    Yay, I am so excited about the Diane Brill! Seriously, I perversely wanted it to be great, and it is!

    • Patty says:

      did you get it? Isn’t the packaging amazing? I like it a lot more than I thought I would when I first put it on. So happy!

    • March says:

      Nah, I didn’t get it. Just read the reviews. :”> But as I said in my notes today, I loved her back in the day, and I was rooting for her fragrance to be decent. And it sounds like better-than-decent.

      Seriously, the bottle’s good? I mean, in person?

  • Robin says:

    Cracking up at “Librarian meets rubber pants”, but in a good way. I need to try the DB, I guess!

  • Elle says:

    I usually don’t waver on whether or not I like a scent. I definitely change my mind as time passes, but I don’t waver in the moment. However, w/ Attarine I’m wavering. Genuinely can’t say how I feel about it yet. Is it worth forking over $200+ for a full bottle? Not at the momenet. On my skin there is no sweetness whatsoever, no fruits. 🙁 I wish there were. It’s a savory, cumin laced stew in a newly built wood cottage on me. No sex happening in that cottage. I’m hoping that as I retry it over the next few weeks, months, maybe years I’ll get different notes to be dominant – this has happened multiple times, so I’m keeping my fingers crossed. All that said, I still think I may need a decant. Whatever it is, this scent doesn’t bore me and for that alone I can love it.
    I’m starting to get intrigued by the Brill scent. I remember her and her impressive cleavage from my NY clubbing days and just didn’t think I’d want a scent of hers…but maybe I do. 🙂

  • kathleen says:

    Waiting, waiting, waiting for El Att to arrive. Now I’m skeered!. Some musks, not so good on me. D likens them to “bad breath” or “butt”. Two things that I prefer not to smell like. Still, so keen to experience a new fume.

    • Patty says:

      Well, I can’t promise this won’t smell like butt on you. but a lot of people are getting some beautiful woods, so cross your fingers!

  • Nava says:

    As much as I was regretting not telling friends of mine to pick me up a bottle of El Attarine (they were in Paris for a few days last week) when Lee reviewed it, I am REALLY regretting it now. Thanks Patty! :(( :((

    Do you think Dianne Brill is at all similar to Fifi Chachnil? Ambre Narguile is all “apple pie” on me, but from the sound of it, DB doesn’t sound like it’s in the same ballpark.

    • Patty says:

      Sorry!!! :((

      The Tobaccy parts of Brill remind me a little of Fifi, but that’s about it. Fifi is much more sweet than Brill is.

  • Divalano says:

    Ah, I see it’s fear in the morning today. I’m still avid to try Attarine but the MKK musk thing now has me on high alert. I’m asnomic to musk most of the time. What if it’s high rutting mooses on me & I have no clue? Think about it. Could be really dangerous walking around wafting moose sex & not knowing it.

    Brill. The notes sound appealing but the fruity floral thing gives me pause. Still … she was downtown hipster coolness defined in the 80s, maybe she’s still got it. And back in the day in clubland her aesthetic & my aesthetic weren’t so far apart, so maybe maybe, ya know? I will not be afraid 😉

  • Masha says:

    I think I’m the only one who gets a strong whiskey note from the Brill- it’s just all Old West Saloon on me! Not that that’s a bad thing…depends what one’s up to, I guess. But I don’t play pool.
    EL sounds lovely and I want to try it! Another skanky surprise that I really like is Molinard’s Nirmala- lots of cumin and florals, it really goes NR on me, but again, at the right moments, I think that’s just fine…!:”>

    • Patty says:

      Whiskey from the Brill? Wow. Nope, not even a dribble of whiskey for me. EA is behaving better today, not quite as much of a FF. 🙂 More to the woodsy beautiful side.

      • Masha says:

        It’s funny, I got this sample almost 5 months ago, I wonder if the recipe changed? I tried it on some others, they got whiskey, too. Weird stuff, will have to compare it to what’s out in the stores now.

  • MattS says:

    Okay. The more I read about El Attarine, the more I gotta sniff it. My decant is on its way and I can’t wait. Moose sex? Sold. Naughty, rutting nature? I may swoon.

    The Diane Brill stuff really doesn’t sound bad either. Especially for a celebrity fragrance. And I agree with Louise, the bottle is nifty; the packaging is like a cigar box and who could go wrong with a librarian in rubber pants?:d

  • carmencanada says:

    Patty, I’ve got to agree that El Attarine *is* rather sexual, but to me, not in an MKK way — it’s more the cumin-sandalwood-orange-blossom at the heart of it. It’s a haunting composition: the scent is now imprinted in my olfactory memory! I haven’t bought it yet — I made a certain gentleman smell it and he expressed a desire to buy it for me, which is *much* better, though he hasn’t gotten round to it yet, which is baaaaaaaaad.

    • Patty says:

      Hey! I’m glad it works that way for you too. The MKK/sweaty piece of it is what is most prominent on me. I get the other dirty undertones and the woods, but I’m pretty much mesmerized by the other.

      Well, that gentleman needs to be nicely nudged.

  • Louise says:

    What I already love about El Attarine is that, true to SL form, it is so very different on different skins. Of course that’s true of all perfume, but SL always retains my admiration for this mutability, even if I don’t care for the juice. Serge Noire certainly inspired an incredible range of responses-from sweaty (in a bad way) to divine to poopy. For me-a sad mish mash of nuttin’ special.

    I’ve only had a smidge of wax sample of El Attarine, and got just a bit of animals-gone-wild from that; mostly it was a happy woody spice mix. Love, must have :d/ But I’d love to have a touch of the MKK you get-except MKK is nothing but gentle musk on me 8-|

    Despite the ad copy, the Diane Brill intrigues-leather, woods, figs and old Cuba: ) Certainly worth a sniff, and the bottle is pretty nifty, too.

    • Disteza says:

      Amen sister on the MKK! I get about 3 minutes of something that smells vaguely like new vinyl, and then it’s pretty, only slightly powdery, musk. Maximum duration is only about 5 hours. It makes me want to cry. Cuir Mauresque and Santal de Mysore are waaay skankier on me (thanks to my superhuman cumin-magnification powers), so I’m hoping for something like that from El Attarine.

      • mollypenny says:

        “superhuman cumin” Good one;)
        Patty, I’m worried about the rubber you mention in the CB DB. Not sure I can think of GOOD rubber smell. hmmm. Guess I should try it if only to see if I can smell that. Also, would you say that El Attarine is a fairly masculine scent?

    • Patty says:

      I think that’s what I like about the EA too, it’s going to be completely different on everyone, and I’ve had other days when I put it on that the hot sex notes were greatly reduced. 🙂