Parfumerie Generale Bois Naufrage

Can I start off by saying how amazing LuckyScent is? I remember when they first came on the scene, they were purveying a few niche brands; now they are THE source for all scents niche. I want to go to L.A. to live in their warehouse. It makes sense – I’d save a bundle on international shipping charges.

It’s been a long time since I reviewed anything remotely niche, and Bois Naufrage is a damn fine place to start. I haven’t been blown away by much recently, but when I received Lee’s sample bonanza a couple of weeks ago, this one blew me away. I’ve always been into fig, but this is something altogether different.  It is salty, woody, after shave-y, slightly coconutty, musky, mercurial fig; yesterday my 12 year-old cousin told me I smelled like cotton candy. Officially, the notes are (according to LuckyScent): fig tree, ambergris, fleur de sel accord, which is comprised of vetiver, orris, mint, neroli and hedione.

I began a love affair with Parfumerie Generale a few years ago. Coze kicked it off, followed by Aomassi, Intrigant Patchouli, Musc Maori, Cadjmere, Cedre Sandaraque and Bois de Copaiba.  There were a few others I flirted with, but these were my faves. I wore them all consistently and with relish. I was hooked like an ice addict being chased by Dog the Bounty Hunter.

The thing I loved most about all these PG scents was that on my skin, they were totally linear. How they smelled when I first put them on was how they smelled 3 or 4 hours later. Despite their lack of evolution, I found them enchanting; unlike anything I’d ever smelled. I totally dig the fact that Pierre Guillaume made the trek from chemist to perfumer; it is evident in all his compositions, even the ones I’m not so crazy about. And Bois Naufrage manages to be something totally different, while it remains loyal to the alchemy of his previous creations.

The first time I smelled it I was literally speechless; the fig burst out of the sample vial, smelling similar to L’Artisan’s Premier Figuier, but with a slightly less milky quality. This fig is greener, like Marc Jacobs for Men, but it has a salty, oceany (not ozone) quality that differentiates it from any other fig fragrance I’ve ever smelled. On Wednesday, it was totally crisp, green, salty and slightly after shave-y.  Yesterday, it was figgy and milky and musky. No green, no salt. About 3 hours after putting it on, I received the cotton candy compliment from my rambunctious little cousin. She wasn’t far off – it was all sweet and musky and yes, it did smell like cotton candy; cotton candy and fig.

There’s a lot of niche I haven’t smelled in the past couple of years: none of the Byredo scents, nor Boadicea the Victorious, and a whole whack of others. Honestly, I just wasn’t interested. Now, the ground has (literally) shifted and I am interested again.  All it takes is one.

Stay tuned for my foray into Humiecki and Graef. Or, as we at the Posse affectionately like to refer to them, “Humiecki and Daft”.

Since you had a few days to rest your weary brains during our short hiatus, here’s something to think about: Which niche line impresses you? Which one is a total waste of time? You can pick more than one for each.

Disclosure: My sample of Parfumerie Generale Bois Naufrage was ferried across the Pond courtesy of darling handsome Lee.

90 Comments

  1. I have a big time love for PG as well. Aomassai is a favorite for me, and Coze and Querelle and Musc Maori and…

  2. Sticking to the newer players in the field rather than the “heritage” niche lines that have been around for a decade or more: Honoré des Pré’s new collection, which I’ve praised to the skies; I’d say Iunx though it started a while back (I’m only sorry they’re unavailable to anyone who doesn’t make the trek to Paris); Vero Profumo of course… And obviously Parfumerie Générale: not all winners, but a lot of fascinating stuff.

    From what I’ve sampled I’d say Boadicea the Victorious was the line I found most loathsome. There may be a gem or two lost in that sea of intensely unpleasant blends, but there are just so many I can’t be bothered to find out.
    That’s the one whose awfulness struck me most. There are a lot I just couldn’t be bothered with after a cursory exploration. There’s just too much stuff out there!

    • Can niche now be considered “ubiquitous”? I thought about that after I posted the question. I guess it’s a matter of access, which has been an issue for me lately.

      I want to like Boadicea because I think those bottles are amazing. When I finally do get the opportunity to try them, your words will be ringing in my head!

  3. niche loves:
    Parfumerie generale: aomassai, cadjmere, musc maori
    Serge Lutens: clair de musc, muscs koublai khan, chergui, daim blond, vetiver oriental
    I profumi di firenze: talco delicato, ambre del nepal
    By kilian: Love, back to black, pure oud
    profumi del forte: roma imperiale, marconi 3, by night white

    niche not so much love…:
    Boadicea the Victorious
    Etat Libre d’Orange
    montale

    • Montale has been a complete disaster for me. iPdF is a great line; Zenzero and Ambre de Nepal especially.

    • Grr. I really want to try the Profumi del Forte line, too!!

  4. I have a lot of time for Le Labo. With the exception of Ambrette, I seem to like them all, though Patch24, Vanille44 and Rose31 are my favs. MDCI is also another consistent niche brand. And of course SL.

    For PG I have mixed feelings, for example I love to smell Bois Blond but never wear it; I perceive something “unfinished” about his perfumes (although Bois Naufragee sounds very appealing, I love salty scents).

    Zero love for Boadicea, little for ELDO (but have not tired the Tilda Swinton one) and no lemmings in Byredo so far.

    • Not for nothin’ but I think Le Labo Ambrette is just water in a bottle. I’m partial to their Patch and Labdanum as well.

  5. PG has some wonderful scents but they have become too pricey for me – they are *decant only* status. The niche lines that work best for me and that I can afford are Commes des Garcons (the regular line; can’t wait to try the new wood one!), Parfums d’Empire, Les Nereides and Parfums de Nicolai. So far I haven’t been impressed by anything from Keiko Mecheri or Etat Libre d’Orange.

    • Yeah, PG gas gone up significantly in price. 🙁

      I’d love to try the new CdG. I’ve definitely got a “woody” for it!

      :d

  6. Gosh Nava, I wish Bois Naufrage was the hit on me that you got! I wish it was a bit less sweet on me and I got no salt. I love PG and its so hard to find in US so I am left to only test from vials and I think the dabbing just does not do them justice. Bois Blond being the jewel in the crown, in my opinion.

    Ormonde Jayne is my favorite itty bitty niche line. I guess Serge Lutens is almost not niche but that house can do no wrong. Rosarita reminds me that Parfums de Nicolai is best kept secret in beautifully done fragrances. I’ll skip the ones I don’t like because I can admire them for what they are trying to do but they just don’t blow my skirt up.

    • The thing that really surprised me about Bois Naufrage was how much it evolved and how different it smelled on the consecutive days I wore it. No other PG has ever done that on me.

      Serge is now in that “gray” area, but it’s still thrilling to know that the only place to get a bell jar is in the Palais Royale!

  7. Definitely Parfums de Nicolai. I like lots of hers. Liz Zorn. I’ve tried some PG’s recently and like their strength and tenacity, but there are just so many of them! Le Labo, always interesting stuff. And I like ELDO’s rad-ness as a concept, if not for comfort-scenting. Trying to keep up with them all is daunting, so I generally wait until I read something along the lines of “you’ve gotta try this!” before ordering a sample.

    • I’ve been doing the same thing. My access has diminished and sometimes I find it exhausting to keep track of all the newer ones.

      Parfums de Nicolai has some amazing scents. I just haven’t shown them much love in a very long time.

  8. Niche lines I’ve been impressed with: Parfums de Nicolai, F. Malle, Tauer Perfumes (or is that indie, rather than niche?), and Teo Cabanel. I also think the Parfums de Rosine line well-done across the board, but then I like rose.

    I am really annoyed by the exclusive pricing of JAR and By Kilian. Also annoyed by the “we’re so coooool we’re smokin’!” hip artsiness of ELd’O and Le Labo. (That said, I do like Beyond Love very much, and Rossy de Palma Eau de Protection is well-done.) I have not yet, moreover, found a single L’Artisan scent that has really suited me.

    But I’m thinking about packing up my sleeping bag and my travel curling iron, so I can bunk in the LuckyScent warehouse with you, Nava.

    • Great choices.

      JAR really annoys me as well. was not impressed by any of them, but Kilian is a different story. His stuff pushes my buttons for some reason.

  9. :”>

    I have no love for By Killian, Tom Ford, Boadicea, Keiko, Nez a Nez and plenty others. I hate Bond, more for business style than scent, though there are only a couple I admire.

    I’m impressed by more though. At the moment, Different Company for Sel de Vetiver, and Miller Harris for Fleurs de Sel. I’m in a salty weather, probably due to the heat, humidity and me sweating as much as March’s main man…

    • Even through that salty fog of yours, you didn’t care for Bois Naufrage? 😮

      My Bond love seems to be waning. I have my faves, but I haven’t been blown away by the more recent releases.

      • Their Saks Boca Raton is a gorgeous,spicy white floral. I was lucky to be gifted one of those. But I think they only made up about 300 bottles or so, and you had to buy it in Boca.

    • Lee you made me laugh.

      Your comment matches your angry lil’ creature.

      I see your roasting your nuts like I told you but it’s making you too heated!
      I still adore your sweaty , salty self.

      I take it you picked Sel de Vetiver for your choice?

      You smell good bebe!

      • Haven’t bought yet, but already own Sel de Vet. And over-wearing it.

        Actually, been booking holidays today, and I’ve postponed perfume purchase until next week or the week after (as a treat after the end of two very busy work weeks where I’ll travel 2000 miles or so…)

        It’s been in the 90s here today and I’m schwetty.

        • Well have a good trip
          and let us all know what you got on holiday.

          Lucky Lee!

          Go take a cold bath with rosemary/peppermint oil, you’ll feel 20X times more chilled for it.

          It’s a cool 67 here.
          I’m off to go on my run in the forest,
          I miss the heat tremendously!

          Take care and have loads of fun for me! Muuah<3<3<3

    • Leeeee???

      Have you tried Sublime Balkiss? It’s another salty TDC. Crunchy, salty berries, like tonic over ice with …raspberries? (maybe).

      anyway, it’s good.

      xoxoyour pal the >-)

  10. as Mals said about Tauer, if Zorn can be considered niche rather than indie, she is near the top of my Loves list.

    I have great love for many of the Malles and delight in a couple of TDC’s offerings, esp Charmes y Leaves. Parfum d’Empire (some of them) and Vero Kern’s fabulosity.

    Hateys: Byredo – have yet to find one I can stand (although the new one is ‘nice’ but I don’t go to niche for ‘nice’)
    PG – for the Drama alone I am still mad at them. So there.

    Serge. I’m going to hell for that one, I know. But try as I might, I cannot find even one that moves me. Damn shame.

    Fence-sitting: PdNic. Soooo close. I got binked by Temps d’un Fete so I’m a bit leery…everybody else seems to love it so.

    And yes, Luckyscent is incredible – an incredible lineup and such wonderful people. I would use the ‘bowing’ emoticon but I suspect he’s still sleeping.

    xoxo >-)

    • No, sweetie, I’m in the hell line in front of you. I pissed off two EMTs at the old folks home a little while ago when I went to pick up my uncle from his day program. I was parked at the ambulance entrance, which is clearly marked “No Emergency Services” and got the huge stink-eye all the same. 😮

      I’m with you on the Malles, PdE and TDC. Great stuff.

      • Well take some o’ that Serge with you, when you go (I’ll be right behind you, clutching vintage Femme which they’ll have to pry from my cold, dead…oh, wait. Never mind). Anyway, I wish I got what you all get…

        I got stink-eye at my pop’s rehab place, too. I was parking right in front and this guy gave me such a LOOK! Of course, that look changed when my bazillion year old pop comes wheeling out the front door, creaking his way to the car, etc…

        …I mean, c’mon. Why else would an able-bodied woman park in front of the damn door?

        • They didn’t seem to notice my uncle shuffling along with his Cadillac rollator, complete with comfy seat, either. Morons…

    • PdN haven’t worked for me, either. I try and try, and feel slightly unwell every time.

  11. I love some of the Kilians and some of the Nicolais but I can never remember the names. I went to Aedes the other day and yes, I do not get the Artisans.

  12. Hi Nava.
    Almost anything from Andy Tauer and some of the Kilian’s, even though they’re quite spendy. I’m exploring Ormonde Jayne and love Luckyscent. Toronto doesn’t have a lot of niche that I like.
    Take care…

    • Believe it or not, I am waaaay behind in my exploration of the Toronto niche scene. Need to work on that. :d

  13. I like a lot of the Le Labo line, and the Histoire de parfum line is very well done. Maison Francis Kurkdjian (sp?) is also amazing. Not all the scents from these lines work for me, but I think they’re all well-crafted and interesting. A few of L’Artisan are nice, and I’ve been lemming the new Byredo…. I want so much to like Serge Lutens but nothing I’ve tried so far works for me (although I admire his ideas and concepts). Andy Tauer is brilliant – I can’t wear many of his scents as they are strong enough to draw protest from DH, but I love the craft that does into them!

    • I agree about the craft. If we don’t love them, we’re usually in agreement about their structure.

    • I’ve only smelled the FMK Lumiere Noire pour femme, but that is gorgeous stuff, and extremely sexy in my opinion.

  14. The word “niche” continues to make me giggle. It always makes me think of Monty Python and the Holy Grail: “We are the knights who say….NICHE!”). I am partial to a number of lines, PG among them. Querelle is one of my very favourites anywhere and I am really digging the deliciously disturbing Papyrus de Ciane and snuggly Coze. Other indies I love are Andy Tauer (Orris. Sigh), Le Labo for Poivre 23, Vetiver 46 and Aldehyde 44, Delrae, Montale’s Aouds (have not like what I have smelled from the rest of the line), de Nicolai, IPdF. I like a lot of Serge but find him too ubiquitous now to include here.

    Big meh to Keiko Mecheri, Byredo, ELDO, L’Artisan (why do they all smell sort of the same to me?), Ava Luxe and all the natural lines I have tried so far.

    NICHE!

    • =)) Forgot about that Monty Python line!

      I’m not a big fan of a lot of the niche naturals, but Ava Luxe in her heyday turned out some real beauties.

    • I don’t think I’ll ever hear ni again, only niche ;)

  15. Hi Nava. Really enjoying your post — it’s made me want to explore PG, which I have sadly, but unintentionally, overlooked. I, too, love Luckyscent — especially their broad sampling program. If I like the first sample of something I get from them, I often go back and order 1 or 2 more of it and decant them into a small spray vial, so I can test the juice sprayed as well as dabbed. It sets me back $15 or so, but I really know then if something is FBW for me.
    I second Maggiecat above in liking many of Maison Francis Kurkdjian’s scents. I also am a fan of PdN (especially her Odalisque and Sacrebleu) and I adore several of the Serges (Fleurs de Citronnier, Daim Blond, Chergui and tentatively, Fumerie Turque). I am really grooving on L’Artisan’s quirky Nuit de Tubereuse, but except for Havana Vanille, nothing else from that house has blown me away.
    When I’m employed again, I’m looking forward to sampling full-throttle! Thanks again and have a great weekend. And happy 4th of July weekend to those Posse-ers here in the States.

    • Yes, LuckyScent does have one of the best sample programs. I’m sure that it’s a huge factor in their success. Especially since all the prices have skyrocketed.

      Have a great weekend and enjoy the 4th. **==

  16. Loves:
    SL
    Tauer
    POTL (are they niche??)

    Not loves (can’t hate on a niche line):
    Bond
    Malle (I know, I know, but I just don’t get them)
    L’Artisan (I tried reallyyyyy hard with this line but nope)
    SIP

    • I still consider POTL niche. for what it’s worth…:d

      L’Artisan was my first niche. I think I’ll always have a soft spot for them. SIPs are waaaay too floral for me, but I know they get a lot of love.

  17. The only thing wrong with Luckyscent is that there is only one Scentbar, in LA. When I want there, I wanted to stay, drink coffee, and hang out with the nice people. I could easily get carried away and spend my retiorement there. I begged them to open a store in Oakland– I kow exactly where, too, near the fabulous Blue Bottle coffee bar. Then, I would only have to walk a short distance to satisfy two major cravings. Niche is fun, but I am at the point where I am inspired to seek out the smaller lines, and am loving the local,California -based lines which are out there. Ineke’s Field Notes is so beautiful– not summery, but it was a wonder all through the late spring. Can’t wait for G–. And the personal contact when you order something from Ineke’s website is so cheering and kind. Roxana Villa’s perfumes are little treasures– the solid samples are lasting a long time. And Roxana also is gracious and generous in her communication. A local Oakland business called Juniper Tree has a line of very nice fragrances– I bought a big spritzing bottle of something called Pink Martini– it’s a refreshing, gentle grapefruity soda with a twist sort of thing. Less than $20. And, she (the woman who owns Juniper Tree, name escapes me)sells perfumery supplies online, so if you want to try to put together your own blends, you can buy a nice kit, for a fraction of the price of some of the other folks out there. And there is scrappy little Body Time–

    • Well, when it comes to a business like LuckyScent, one and done is probably their best bet. Generates more buzz, ya know? :d

  18. Oh, Nava-such a tough qvestion. I’m a fangirl of many nicheys.

    I like PG alot-but not many like me ; ( I adore Crime Exotique, though, and Bois de Copaiba, when I want rich scents. And I do believe I’d like the Naufrage-salt scents are really making me sing just now. I am especially liking Profumum’s Acqua de Sale and Hilde Solianni’s Saaliiisssiimo. And two fine niche lines those two are-I have favs in both lines.

    I am still very fond of several Neil Morris scents-especially Vapor, Midnight Tryst, and Dark Season. Andy Tauer and Vero Vern are nobility, IMO, even when the scent doesn’t work on me.

    SL goes without saying, but I’ll say it again. I grew to love Filles and Foureau, and am eager for his new leathery fall release. Le Labo rarely fails me, and when it does, I get over it quickly.

    Can I mention a vintage house that is not really niche?….I love, love all my Lanvins.

    On the “meh” list are Bond (‘cept Silver Factory on my son), KM, OJ, ELDO.

    Happy Weekend all!

    • I know, but we need to be able to answer (most of) the tough questions!

      Have a good weekend.

  19. I don’t love every L’Artisan, but some of them are in my all-time top ten, PLUS they introduced me to Duchaufour. ^:)^ Does Annick Goutal count? The quality of femininity of those scents is exceptional, and her unisex Vetiver is the best, to my nose. Of course, there will always be a special place in my heart for Andy Tauer. After all, he’s just one guy and yet he did L’Air, which might be my desert island scent, and two wonderful roses. I don’t love Kilian’s packaging – not only because of the added expense but because I just don’t like shiny black – however, he strikes an elegant balance with extravagant materials such as tuberose and oud that I adore. Also appreciate FM, PdN, FM and SL, of course. Haven’t made up my mind about CdG and ELdO yet: they are playful and original, and I enjoy sampling, but no FBs so far.

    Love Via del Profumo’s Balsamo della Mecca, but haven’t sampled anything else from that line yet, though I certainly shall. Also want to explore Honore des Pres further.

    One line that really resonates with me and that has not been mentioned (I think) is Diptyque. Some of theirs are among my top ten – delicious, original and natural-smelling.

    So many niche (and mainstream) releases, so little nose time!

    • Personally, I think Dyptique should have stuck with just candles. Everything of theirs I’ve ever tried on my skin disappears after 30 seconds. And I love so many of them! :((

    • How frustrating! Skin is really different from person to person, I guess. The Diptyques that I love – L’Ombre dans L’Eau, Olene, and Virgilio – seem to be quite persistent on me. And I find them quite strong – I wonder if they could be overloading your nose?

  20. I have to judge my favs and hates based on how they perform on me, so while the perfumes themselves may not be bad, on me they are less than wearable.

    Am usually impressed by: SL, Strange Invisible Perfumes, Miller et Bertaux, Parfums d’Empire, Vero Kern, Les Nez, Amouage, Roxana Villa

    Am usually underwhelmed (or otherwise emotionally scarred) by: Mona d’Orio, Andy Tauer, ELdO, PdN, Neil Morris, Micallef.

    • I don’t blame you. You got some high prices faves there!

  21. Loves: Parfums de Nicolai. So many favorites here: Sacrebleu, Maharanih, Le Temps d’une Fete, Eau Exotique, Eau d’ete. Parfum d’Empire (Ambre Russe and Osmanthus Interdite in particular), Tauer and Sonoma Scent Studios, though they may be more indie than niche. Each has at least one that’s a “desert island” scent for me.

    Not so much: Bond: never found anything I like there, and I don’t care for a number of things they’ve done as a business. Uncle Serge: everything I’ve tried has turned incredibly, sickeningly sweet on me. **ducks and runs**

    Looking at everyone’s comments, there are so many I still have to try!

    • To each his or her own. That’s what makes it so much fun!

      I hope Patricia de Nicolai knows how happy she makes us.

  22. Hey, PP it’s great to have you back up and running!

    Since my world is niche scents, I pretty much spend most of my time sniffin’ them out.

    Lines can be unpredictable – just when you are about to write off Etat Libre d’Orange they come out with the not-to-be-missed Tilda Swinton’s Like This and they are back in the game.

    But that’s the fun of it all, isn’t it?

  23. For me, niche loves include Delrae, TDC, MDCI (except for the godawful peach scrubber), Le Labo and the late lamented Gobin-Daude. I also think Micallef and Divine have a surprising number of hits among the misses and are underrated. And if I didn’t think Liz Zorn and Sonoma Scent were too small to be officially niche, they would be in there. I don’t hate all the Boadiceas. Some of them are interesting ideas and a couple are even wearable. But I do hate Montale, Neil Morris (sorry, I’m sure he’s lovely but I find his scents suffocating) and Bond. Particularly Bond. How can such a massive and expensive line not have more than one fragrance (Silver Factory) I can even tolerate? I also hate Tom Ford but I can’t decide whether he counts as niche. But then bear in mind I only like 2 or 3 Serges and decide whether my opinion is valid!

    • Everyone’s opinion is valid! The peach MDCI is the only one I like!

  24. Oh!!! (Gasp)

    Well I do love Montale, they were my gateway into hell.
    ( I mean niche)
    I started big and it was all downhill from there.

    I also dig a few others, Teo Cabanel is a amazing favorite and feels honest to me, PG is also great along with many mentioned here, M.Micallef , Amouage, DelRae but mostly I adore smaller, sweeter lines, V&SPP, S.S.S, Tauer, and Soivohle.

    They all bring something to the table,
    take my money and help me smell beautiful.

      • hahaha! Ok well they can come with me.<3<3<3

        But Nava I really only love three out of a zillion of them and that's –
        Aoud Queen Roses, White Aoud and Vanilla Absolu.

        Be well and Montaleless :)

        ~T

  25. Hi Nava

    So many favorites in so many lines, it’s easier to talk about the lines that are fails! But some consistent loves:

    Delrae
    TDC
    Le Labo
    PdN
    Malle

    As much as I want to hate By Kilian, I grudgingly love Beyond Love and I like Pure Oud quite a bit.

    Serge, Amouage and L’Artisan-many loves, but are they really niche?

    As for consistent fails:

    Byredo
    ELdO
    Boadicea the not-so-Victimless
    Anything floral by Micallef (following an unfortunate traumatic decanting episode)

    And on the “I admire but can’t wear” list:
    PG, for coming up with the most interesting scents that induce either headaches or a quick run to the kitchen sink to scrub. Followed by a bout of self-questioning. (“Why the heck can’t I wear that?”)

    • Those Kilians are wonderful. Amouage scents are also wonderful, but so not me.

      So many people have raved about Montale, but none of them work for me. I feel about them the way you do about PG. 🙁

  26. I really liked several of those Humiecki & Daft ones, even though I wasn’t moved to buy them. I guess Annick Goutal hardly qualifies as “niche” to most people, but I’d be happy to receive a gift of almost any bottle they have. Niche stuff that hasn’t done it for me? Eh, too long a list. 🙂

    • Yeah, those Humiecki & Dafts are pretty good. Stay tuned…

  27. My favorite is LesNez-I really admire that the only have a small number of perfumes-quality over quantity
    I have a full bottle of Manoumalia and hoping to get Let Me Play the Lion nex month
    Wish i can buy the amazing turtle vetiver :(
    the sample I had was divine
    Underwhelmed slightly by Ormonde Jayne had really high hopes for some reason although I do own a bottle of Taif and quite like Tolu – the rest just smelled the same and not very keen on Iso drydown
    From a very few PG samples Ive tried I love Fellanila and hope
    to get a decant or bottle one day
    BdN sounds like something I can fall in love with !
    xxxx

    • I really wanted to love Les Nez Absinthe, but it went all celery on me. I find the Ormonde Jayne scents really overwhelming; they’re beautiful, but just not what I’d normally wear.

  28. I haven’t sampled much niche, but Twill Rose from Parfums de Rosine and Putain de Palaces both really thrilled me. I love anything that shows the creators took a risk, even if the result isn’t so much wearable perfume as olfactory art (though I found both wearable in this case).

    I refuse to even try anything from Bond, due to their shabby behavior. I find bullying and tantrums unappealing, and refuse to gratify either.

    • I agree with you Madea- mean people suck.

      But so do Bond scents. :P

    • Yeah, Bond has pissed off their fair share.

      I agree about taking risks. It’s always an eye-opener when someone proclaims a a mainstream scent doesn’t smell “mainstream”. Unfortunately those are the ones that wind up in the graveyard way before their time. I guess that’s why we have niche. 🙂

  29. The Naufrage sounds wonderful! I love salt. My favorite niche houses are L’Artisan, PG, TDC, Malle, Micallef, and Stephanie de Saint-Aignan, I don’t connect, so far, with many fragrances from Goutal, Tauer, Bond, or Lutens.

    • I wonder if this reflects the climate where you are, Haunani? I’m realizing that most of the scents I like from Tauer, Lutens and even Goutal are best in the winter or late fall.

      • That could be, Nozknoz, though I think I just tend to prefer a lighter touch with fragrance.

  30. Oooo fun post!!!!

    Loves: Annick Goutal, Divine, Parfums de Nicolai, Malle, OJ, SL and L’Artisan of course. However, I do still have a full bell jar of Muscs Koublai Khan that I trying so hard to love but it makes me sick to my stomach every time I unstop the bottle, and I can’t stand the SL Fleurs d’Oranger which I know gets a lot of love; at the same time my hands down favorite of all time is SL Datura Noir, so I guess it evens out. =)

    Hates: Bond (though I have a serious soft spot for the sickeningly sweet fungoodtimes in Coney Island), CB I hate Perfumes, Caron (guess I’m 3rd in line for Hell), Jo Malone, and Byredo. Meh.

    • I’m not a huge fan of Caron, either. Louise will tell you – we once did a straight up trade of Tabac Blond for DK Chaos.

      I adore Coney Island, and can take or leave Jo Malone. So, I think you’re way down in the queue for hell. :d

      • Awwwww– I’m having my own little “leave Britney alone!” moment on behalf of my dear old Carons. Nocturnes for summer nights, En Avion, Tabac Blond, Parfum Sacre–they are all lovley to me, and competetively priced with the niche brands– actually less expensive than lot of stuff out there. Is Caron cosidered nich? If it is, I’ll give them a little love– they need it, poor Carons. :x

  31. I’m glad to see that I’m not alone in my seething Bond hatred – I would normally just think “meh” and move on if several of their scents hadn’t made me want to saw my arm off to get them away from me. And, stupid me, I kept trying – thinking that surely there must be [i]one[/i] in there that I would like.

    Kilian makes me mad just in principal, but I do love Back to Black and Rose Oud. I just refuse to pay for the packaging and stick to decants and travel refills. Tom Ford probably doesn’t count as niche, but he annoys the crap out of me too – like he cares, right?

    Le Labo is a consistent love – I’m wearing Iris 39 right now and Fleur d’Oranger 27 is a desert island scent for me. I quite like Aldehydes 44 and Rose 31 as well. The only one that I’ve tried that is iffy is Patch 24 – and it’s really a matter of the right weather and a light hand and then I love it. The city exclusive do burn my britches though.

    Other lines that I love are Annick Goutal and Amouage for sheer consistent excellent. I’ll even forgive Amouage for Eau de Ciel – yuck. And Malle – even stuff that I can’t wear, I find interesting and well-done.

    • If I had my choice of which fragrance house to be pissed at, it would be JAR. So much hoi polloi b.s. I can’t stand it. Bond does get under my skin, but I can’t help but love those bottles.

      • I’d probably forgive Bond for many things if all of their scents weren’t either “meh” or “OMG GET IT OFF ME” on me. And I always forget about JAR and their refusal to even have testers – mostly, in my head, they don’t exist.

  32. Gosh, what a question. I don’t have too much else to add here but I can shout out my own favorites. While Chanel isn’t niche, I do have to say I enjoy quite a few of their Exclusifs (wearing BdI right now), and Malle is probably up there with the best. Love Amouage as well. Some hardly seem to qualify anymore as niche due to their sheer volume, like the Bond’s and the L’Artisans, maybe even SL (which I don’t like, so welcome to hell), but they still are not quite available. I will say I haven’t been the biggest fan of the Bond line (and I hear they’re kinda mean), but lo and behold I bought my first last week in a mad fit of desire, so go figure.

    On the topic of quantity, it’s not that I don’t want to bother with some, but many lines just put out so much these days that it’s impossible to keep up, so I just get intimidated and don’t even go there. Montale is like that. Love my Black Aoud, but yikes! Tsunami of Montales! And Goutals all seem to be full of butterflies and bows, so I can saunter away as a male of the species. I just wish they’d all scale it back a bit and give us less to be overwhelmed by. I think something like this was discussed on Grain de Musc last week.

    I am curious about The Different Comany, more Tauers, ELDO (just bought Like This in another mad fit of desire), more PG (love love love my Intrigant Patchouli), PdN, and the rest of the Malle line I haven’t smelled yet.

    • Is it an oxymoron to be “overwhelmed by niche”? When I asked the question, I guess I really wasn’t thinking about how many there actually are. Good point, Jared. 🙂

      • Ha! Yeah, great point! In theory we shouldn’t be overwhelmed by niche! I guess it begs the question as to what is considered niche these days if we can be overwhelmed by it!

  33. :)Happy Fourth of July!

    I’m new to niche perfume, and so glad to have discovered Luckyscent. I had written off department store perfumes years ago due to husband’s allergies. I could only use Lady Primrose (an excellent line btw, though I’m sorry, Joe, I’m afraid it too is “girly” or “womanly” perhaps, much along the style of AG but focusing more on bath, body and home beautification; available in every lil’ boutique in the state of Texas and Neiman Marcus, not super expensive). Anyway, what I’ve found is dh not only tolerates, but loves many niche lines. I also adore and appreciate the Perfumed Court!

    Thus far, niche lines that are consistently great: PdN, PG, Montale, Penhaligons (little bit of old lady in me loves them I suppose) and, if they count as niche lines Annick Goutal and Guerlain’s Trunkshow fragrances (they are expensive and hard to find after all :-) and L’Artisan.

    So far no luck with Malle. With the exception of Un Lys, Serge is difficult. He reminds me of a genius child who is bored and constantly acting up in school. And I totally agree: the Bonds don’t even receive my admiration, except for packaging, without which they would have long been gone IMHO.

    Consistently love: PdN, PG (adding Bois Naufrage to my list right now), Parfums MDCI, Amouage,

    • Ha! I like your Serge analogy Sherri.

      I’m no chemist, but I lean towards the theory that the higher quality ingredients in niche fragrances aren’t as apt to trigger allergies as department store and mass market scents. In my own experiences with the fragrance-allergic, I’ve never gotten complaints about my niche scents, only department store. Coincidence? I have no idea.

  34. I love this review, Nava — it makes me want to try this one so much. It sounds like a perfect answer to “how do I reconcile salt and sweet” in my perfumes, because one or the other always seems to be on my skin.

    • If Bois Naufrage fails you, go for Lindt Fleur de Sel dark chocolate. That’s never let me down! :d

  35. I love Serge, just about anything in the line. I also love Montale but I can’t WEAR the damn Oud stuff in public, so I don’t have any of them. :((

    I love all the Frederic Malle scents I have tried so far but I need to smell more of them. I love some of the By Killians. especially Beyond Love, but Cruel Intentions made me want to scrub my arm with Ajax and then pour bleach on it.

    I adore all things Amouage and most of the Annick Goutals.

    Bond No. 9 is dead to me for their underhanded tactics and public temper tantrums; I don’t care how good or bad their stuff is, since I will never buy it. That said, I liked their Saks Fifth Avenue For Her, and I still have some of my sample left. The line is over-hyped anyway, they are not masterpieces. The bottles are fabulous, too bad all the juice in them is a rip-off of somebody else’s idea.

    Also over-hyped: Xeryoff. Silly name, pallid perfumes.

    Of course I adore everything by Andy Tauer, and I am a big fan of DSH Perfumes, but those are more indie than niche, as others have pointed out. Where is the line drawn, anyway? :-?

  36. What a great article! It really makes me want to go out right now and try it all! As for the comments, you too are all so helpful as well! I cant even begin to decide which Bond Scent is my favorite! I love ALL of them!

Comments are closed.