Montale Full Incense

Who doesn’t love incense in fragrance?  Well, lots of people, I suppose, including those for whom it triggers less-than-happy religious associations.  I was spared all that in my innocent Lutheran childhood, where incense at church would have been (like an actual crucifix) a giant, uncomfortable leap away from Luther and lutefisk, in the general direction of the Catholics.  As a child I wanted desperately to be Catholic because in my less-than-perfect understanding of the nuances of various faiths, being Catholic would have guaranteed me four or eight siblings, pierced ears, and a wardrobe of much frillier dresses than my mother would ever tolerate.  But I digress.

For those of us who love our incense, Full Incense by Montale has been greeted with shouts of joy.  Montale isn’t exactly the house o’subtle, and if someone’s really going to blow your perfumed socks off, in terms of sheer volume, Montale’s a good bet.  Their Jasmin Full should come in a dabber bottle.  Anyhoodle, I’ve been toying with Full Incense for awhile, and here’s my review.  According to LuckyScent, the notes are very simple:  cedar, labdanum, patchouli, elemi, and Somali incense.

It’s still January, and will be January for several more months, I’m sure of it, and January’s a fine time to enjoy the cold smell of incense, infused as it often is with the feeling of a cold blast of the outdoors, maybe while cross-country skiing through the woods.  And like any interesting incense, Montale Full Incense sets its own distinctive course.  From its Pine-Sol top through its acrid-ammoniac middle, moving on to the bit that smells like chlorinated pool water, to the drydown that reminds me of peppered dirt, Full Incense is an epic fail on me.  I’ve worked through samples from three different sources, and the results are oddly (almost pleasingly!) consistent.  Naturally enough, since it smells hideous on me (and it’s Montale), it has the half-life of plutonium.

How perverse are the desires of the human heart?  I’ve enjoyed this experience — its consistent awfulness.  Is Full Incense terrible?  Of course not.  It’s probably great stuff.  It’s just terrible on me.  It’s lovely on Louise, for instance.  I laugh and shrug, content to let this one get away.  I’ll stick with the Armani Bois d’Encens or CdG Avignon when I want my “straightest” incense, and Lutens’ Fille en Aiguilles for something a bit more outdoorsy, or Via del Profumo’s Mecca Balsam when it’s time for more sweet resin….

… what about you?

121 Comments

  1. Well damn-now I just have to try it. You got me at peppered dirt.
    I can almost taste it.

    My bucks are on SSS’s Incense Pure, DSH’s Hinoki (not exactly an incense scent, but I burn a lot of Japanese incense, so this is not really a stretch) and just a touch, literally a touch of Kamali’s Incense.

    Montale has never been one of my favorite houses but last night I blasted my cotton sleep shirt with Patchouli Leaves. They can throw all their other stuff into a big black hole as long as they keep making that. Not an iota of chlorinated pool water to be found. :-D

    • Annnnnnnnnndddd …. ANOTHER SNOW DAY here today, no school. Kill.me.now. It’s like half an inch of slush. OTOH it’s supposed to seriously snow later, which means I have to haul my sorry butt to the grocery store. The HORROR. Should have done so yesterday.

      Ya know, of the 3,000,000 extant Montales, people mention Patchouli Leaves a lot.

      • Aha March! We avoided a a snow day here in Falls Church City but I’m sure we’ll get Early Dismissal instead. It just so happens I’ve been wearing White Oud for the last few days, which I got from TPC specifically in a roll-on so I could dab it. Heaven! (Exc. for the grocery store part.)

        • They’re saying 4 – 8 inches now. The grocery store was hideous, but at least it’s over. Our roads are surprisingly bad for a bunch of slush.

          I’m predicting no school tomorrow.

          White Oud – yet another one I’ve not tried.

      • Oh, no, March! Not ANOTHER one! What will they do to make it up, cut into spring break or go longer into summer?

        • We have 5 snow days built into the calendar-and then they waive a few. Worst case scenario-makeup days cutting into spring break, or a few extra days in summer. With zero attendance by students….

        • Home again today. The power keeps cutting in and out but is mostly on, thank God. All our neighbors to the north are out. We’re running a B&B again. Here’s hoping Pepco gets it together.

    • Seconding Incense Pure or for the light, wafting smoke of burning incense, my SOTD, Bois D’Armenie.

      BTW, March, I accidently sprayed this over SDV (after it had been on for a while) and you might like that combo. It gave SDV the smokeyness that you’re looking for.

  2. I’ve kinda given up on Montale. I bought a 20 ml bottle of Black Aoud from TPC, which should last me a thousand years. I had a 1 ml sample which lasted me over a year (I think I used half), so I agree these things are better dabbed.

    Anyway, I don’t know if you are still on the lookout, and this is not really incense, but you said smoke way back. For some reason I was looking at FragranceNet of all places and whaddayaknow? they had Annick Goutal Chine Imperiale 4.1 oz. for $27.99 less a 15% basenotes discount so I snatched it up. After my transaction was complete I checked and they are sold out. I saw it and remembered your review so thought I should grab it. I hope it wasn’t stored on top of the furnace.

    • lol at those giant bottles. I have the same deal with Jasmin Full. I could perfume New York City with that thing.

      Oooh, the Chine! I hope you like it. That’s amazing. I paid a small fortune for it on fleaBay.

  3. I know what you mean about ‘almost pleasingly consistent’ in its awfulness on you. At least you know it’s YOU – so now you can stop trying. Your >-) pal here has stomped down that road a couple of times, most recently with Tom Ford’s Japon Noir, which I was prepared to love with wild abandon – FOUR times = Total Fail.

    I have difficulties with incense – just ain’t mah thang, it seems. Passage d’Enfer is probably the closest I can come to an incense – and that’s ….heck, is that even an incense? 😕

    All those Midnight Messes and 3 Kings from Hell and Yo Ho Ho and a Hookah…..nope! sorry…:(

    xo >-)

    • Oh, you have to copyright those names!!! Or is there an indie perfumer out there who wants to use them?? If I ever start making my own perfumes, I will ask you to name them….;-)

      • Masha, what a great idea! They sound like perfect names for the Smell Bent line. Musette, you should contact the perfumer there. Brent Leonesio, isn’t it? But make sure that you get credit. I’d wear ’em just for the names. Especially Yo Ho Ho and a Hookah-that one just sounds so insanely silly.

    • Girl, once again, you have me spewing my tea! :)
      I need a plastic keyboard cover when reading this blog …

    • I loved PdE for ever and ever amen until that plastic-lily note really started to stick up there and annoy me. :-w Maybe my bottle’s turned.

      Yeah, you should phone up Smell Bent and get that kid to hire you for some names.

    • . . . tears rolling down my cheeks, triggering gagging coughs . . . :d

    • I’d buy something called “Yo Ho Ho and a Hookah” in a heartbeat! ;-) Imagining the bottle ….

  4. Montale Full Incense totally works on me – and it smells -exactly- like the highest quality Omani incense that was burning in the Oman pavilion at the Expo (World’s Fair) in Shanghai back in October (fun exciting trip btw ;)

    Up close -that- incense had a completely different aroma than the older incense that had been hanging in the air for hours at the edges of the building; Montale’s Full Incense actually smells like that and captures the different variations. I was really impressed.

    Granted, there’s a lot of other very loud, very crass Montale stuff I don’t really care for…

    • At the Multicultural Nights at our center, sometimes folk from the Arab States will burn the most lovely frankincense and oud chips. Not to be missed!

    • Well, there you go. I do think the overall reaction to Incense Full has been very positive, and I love your point of reference.

  5. Hello March,

    I just love sentences such as : “It’s January and will stay January for severall more month’s”.

    About Montale, I didn’t try the Full Incense yet but why don’t they consider making very small bottles? The Black Oud I have will last for generations to come and then some. One spritz on a scarf lasts for day’s if not weeks (depending on whether you wash the scarf or not)

    Anyhow, last summer I visited the store in Paris and was snobbed out by a SA who found that testing 2 fragrances was allready a bore. She kept on looking at me wondering if she could get me out as fast as possibly. Which I did. No need to buy any more Montale bottles for me. As Furriner mentioned a 5 ml (1 ml?) decant of their frags is more than sufficient, I’ll order some at the PC if I feel I can’t live without.

    • Montale is certainly a house which would do for some smaller bottles, although I’d say that about almost anyone at this point. Much of their stuff is so strong. Why don’t they do a coffret or a discovery set? A buncho ouds or some such. 😕

          • Dang, and I hear it’s a real posh joint, too…I’ll try Dior, maybe.

            • I have had great service in the shop-and especially ordering by phone when back in the U.S. The price for the 100 ml bottle (great for splitting) is around 100-110 Euros, with free shipping, and a complementary 20 ml bottle of whatever you like. The number is on the Montale-Paris website, and the best SA (bilingual, efficient) is Celine.

  6. Hah, love that sucker punch halfway through what I thought would be an effusive review. I have yet to dip my toe into Montale, but the descriptions of some of them make me a little wary. Jasmin Full sounds like the kind of scent that would keep me up at night, and anything oud-heavy is almost guaranteed to be scrub city on me. Patchouli Leaves sounds heavenly, though.

    As for incense…I can’t really wear the “straight” stuff like Avignon, much as I love the smell of incense in real life. My favorite incense at the moment is YSL Nu, mostly because the cardamom sweetness and peppery spice keep it from being too literal and churchy. (Thanks for your offhand comment some two years back about YSL Nu being a must-try for incense lovers, btw; I’ve now fallen head over heels, and they’ve just discontinued the bugger. AGGHH.)

    • I’m a total nut for Nu, too! I won’t say how many backup bottles I have…do you like the EdT as well as the EdP? I like them both, but most people love not the EdT….

    • First off — loved the review! I, too, love incense and was getting all excited to read about this scent, when, wham, it didn’t sound so good. I was waiting for someone to mention YSL Nu, which is a real favorite of mine. I have the EdP, and have hear that the EdT is quite different. It lacks the incense and is more floral. Don’t know if that’s true. Has anyone got any info there?

      I once smelled the Armani Bois d’Encens, but before I could get back to re-experience that gem, Saks must have shipped it back to NY. I’ll be watching the comments today for any other incense suggestions. Must go and spray some Nu…… Thanks, Darryl.

      • I need to go look, I promise I will, but I have to get it out of a box. Always happy to hear people yakking about Nu. All you lurking Newbies should be Nu-bies.

        No! Did Saks get rid of the Armanis? ::sob:: I hope ours didn’t.

      • The EdT is more floral, but there’s plenty of that ice-cold-incense effect. I think someone once wrote, back in the early days of perfume bloggery, when mastodons roamed free and smelled good, that it should have been David Bowie’s perfume.

        • That was Robin at NST, and she’s right: Nu is straight-up Bowie. And yes, the EdT is more floral, but I also find it far less spicy and woody, my favorite aspects of the EdP. It’s perhaps more user-friendly, but it’s a bit dull for me.

          • That was not me! It might have been Angie — she reviewed Nu at NST.

    • Well, Darryl, *I* thought it would be an effusive review too! I mean, this looked like a lay-up. How could it not be perfect? Shrug.

      Nu! NU NU NU NU! I totally forgot about that, although I guess I don’t put it in my “pure incense” pile because of that cardamom-sweetness. What a gorgeous scent, and it used to be dirt cheap, maybe not any more? Folks just have to get past that weird purple plastic container.

      • You know, I’m going to stand in my own corner of the room and say that I dig the Nu bottle. I always got a kick out of Tom Ford’s self-consciously “mod” packaging aesthetic, though, including the designs for M7, Gucci Envy, and (much-maligned) Gucci Rush. My particular bottle of Nu leaks a bit, though, which drives me bonkers, but I think the design is cool.

        And yes, it was dirt cheap less than a year ago. A quick perusal of eBay now places it around DK Black Cashmere levels – around $90 or so for a bottle of eau de parfum. The EDT is a little cheaper, but not by much. I’m sorely tempted to hit up the perfume boutique in my area, which has a huge stash of Nu in all shapes and sizes, and get a backup (much as I hate puchasing the same scent twice when there’s so much out there I haven’t sniffed.)

        • No way! I should definitely keep an eye out, then, I think I’ve seen them for cheap around here too.

  7. Pine-Sol, ammonia, chlorine, and peppery dirt? I think I wear this perfume every Monday, which is house-cleaning day! So I must be very chic….

  8. First: hahahahah. Thanks for all the laughs the moment I woke up and reached for my laptop. Great post, March.

    I’ve had good luck with the 3 or 4 Montales I own. Now I’m curious about Full Incense, but yes, I have been warned.

    And I haven’t met an incense I didn’t like. Western or Eastern. One of my favorites is Guerlain Bois d’Armenie. Which doesn’t smell, to me, all that much like Papiers d’Armenie, which I also love. In fact, I think I’m going to dig up my little decant and wear it today.

    • I think I’m going to dig up my little bag of Papiers d’Armenie, thanks for the reminder! I love that smell. Snowed in again today, sort of. (slushed in?) And don’t consider me a warning on the Montale, everyone else likes it.

    • Bois d’Armenie smells like toasted marshmallows to me. Nothing exotic about it!

  9. I like a few Montales, but I’m with Furriner — I’ve kind of given up trying new ones, they all seem to be saying the same thing. I love incense, but Incense Full sounds like maybe more incense than I need.

    • I never got very far into the Montales to start with — I mean, they have more ouds than anyone could want, and that’s just the ouds!

      DK Incense is prob. more incense than I need. This was just so weird on me, R!

  10. It’s clearly going to be January forever. Today’s bit o’snow and school closure just prove it. Yay for me, sorry for moms with kidlets stuck home ; (

    Somehow I missed smelling how very bad this incense smelled on you. Prolly because I was alternating huffing my wrist and shoving it up your schnozz. Sorry!

    I do love it, and have a bottle winging, or rather perhaps backstroking from Paris (where the heck is it?) For my free 20 ml, I chose Black Oud-I need that sucker punch of dark rose right about now.

    There are very few incense that I *think* don’t work on me. Mecca can get too sweet-but it works nicely with the Montale for some dryness. The CdGs are just OK. NK is great-with adherence to prescribed low doses. Black Cashmere is HG material. And on and on. The only troubles I get into are too much myrhh-awdward note on me.

    Oh, and MdM-I really don’t get mold-mostly warm rosy/vanillic smoke. MMM.

    Great post, March!

    • Just got back from the grocery store. That was a barrel of fun. Are we really getting 4 – 8 inches? Ugh.

      The bottle’s winging its way on Air France, with a baguette tucked under its arm.

      Messy Minute. I finally got some more. It still smells like mold on me. 🙂

  11. Hi March, great post today, as usual. I, too, love me some incense, but this sounds like it could be a bit too much. I haven’t explored Montale much at all (not being big on oud)
    but might have to go play in some Patchouli Leaves.
    I’m with you all the way on the lovely Bois d’Encens and the sharp, balsamy goodness of the Serge Fille, and also like DK Black Cashmere and Chaos (is it really incensey though
    or just more zen?).

    • You know what I love about this post? Everyone listing out the old incense favorites. It’s like a warm, snuggly blanket.

  12. I love it when you and Louise have such completely different experiences with a scent. I never know which side I’ll wind up on. Gotta try this one.

    I have varied reactions to incense, but in general, I like incense mixed with a few warm/sweet notes-vanilla, amber, opop etc, and in blended incense fragrances, like Silver Factory. Dry, austere fragrances can be nice on certain days, but I tend to tire of them after a few hours. I’ve noticed that pretty much all incense smells great on my son-dry, warm, blended with other notes-doesn’t matter.

    • Clarifying: what I meant when I said “blended”, Silver Factory isn’t a simple incense with just a few other obvious notes like amber, wood or resins. There’s a lot going on in there, including floral and citrus notes.

      • It’s definitely an incense perfume, though. I really love that one.

      • Hm. Then I’m going to predict a similar fail with this one, although I could be wrong. “Warm” it is not.

  13. Oh, March! You had me at “…my less-than-perfect understanding of the nuances of various faiths…”! Great post and thanks for the first real lol of the day!

      • OOh, I never felt the desire to be Catholic when I was growing up. We were Episcopalian, so we had all of the ritual with none of the guilt… /:)

  14. Incense is touchy for me. I was raised Catholic but without the pierced ears, multiple siblings, and frilly dresses. One Sunday we were a bit late getting to High Mass and were in the 2nd row. The incense was overpowering and I ended up puking in the pew. Father and (my) father were not happy.

    So, I approach incense with great caution. Think I’ll stick with the Pine Sol on Mondays.

    • See, this is just the sad sort of story that makes me glad I didn’t smell incense as a kid, although … didn’t every kid who went to church regularly throw up in there at least once? I sure did.

  15. I like the Montale Black Aoud, and I do like strong perfumes, so you left me wondering about this one. But you sure didn’t make it sound attractive.

    Interesting that you grew up in a Lutheran church without a crucifix. My church has one prominently displayed. No incense, though.

    And I love “It’s still January, and will be January for several more months”… Sure feels that way here in Maine! We aren’t having any snow, but it’s 7 degrees right now.

    • We had plenty of crosses — just no crucifix as in Jesus-nailed-to-it. I married an Episcopalian, which is one dry martini away from the full guitar-strumming Catholic, as far as I can tell.

      Maine has had some vicious, cold weather. But as I’ve said before, Mainiacs have pointed out to me that unlike the rest of us, they’re dressed and ready for it.

      • Laughing about “one dry martini away from the full guitar-strumming Catholic.” Growing up in a Catholic family, I always wanted to be Episcopalian, because they were known as “Catholics who knew how to have fun.” Sounded pretty good to me. The Catholicism is probably why I like CdG Avignon so well. Smells like a cathedral to me.

        But my favorite incense is PdE Wazamba. There’s Balsam fir and tart fruit in there with the incense, but it’s not “Christmassy” in the least. In fact, I wear it all year.

      • I heard an Episcopal priest once say the only difference between the Catholic Church and Episcopal Church were the bells and the smells!

        • They actually use the “smells and bells” phrase at our church if they’re going to do the incense, which isn’t a regular part of the routine.

  16. You know, my first incense was Diptyque Trois. I was early in the curve, I was naive…I felt like somebody crumbled an incense cone in my nose.

    I tried it last week. Still cone head.

    As a result, I am Very Leery of anything marked incense. I tried Mecca Balsam thinking that would help smooth out any dry just the facts problems, but no, too sweet. Bois d’Armenie is nice, but the incense is a hint of something from the next room; I feel like I am cheating. However, “cheating” with incense seems to be the way to go for me; right now I am kinda digging Coeur de Vetiver Sacre, which is about incense and hints of sweet (and pickles, if you listen to Marina) as vetiver. Don’t know if I *like* it, but am having fun.

    The closest to “honest” incense I like is Nu. I like Black Cashmere, too, but again…it is so smoothed out on me, it seems like cheating.

    • Look, here I am, finally. We got clocked — that horrible sleety stuff followed by snow, branches and trees down everywhere. I’ve been a-shoveling. Our power’s still on (fingers crossed.) It’s time for some blogging.

      • Yeesh…glad the power’s still on for you. I guess I can handle being pre-emptied for a major snowstorm. ;). Stay warm, and stay safe.

        Hey, I think I’m an incense gentle kind of person. I’m glad Trois does it for someone…I hope to huff it on you sometime. I’ll bet you rock it; I still remember how you could “sport” Yatagan. I cede to your More Major wearability, which I love all the more when you then toss your love for things like Cinema in the mix.

        Would this be a good time to mention I forgot Gap Om?

  17. Love me some incenses. The CdGs, especially Kyoto & Jaisalmer. DK Incense. L’Air du Desert Marocain. Recently discovered the Mecca Balsam – holy moley, that’s good stuff. Basically, if it has frankincense in it, I’m down. I lurrrrrrve me some frank.

    BTW – raised Catholic, one sister, no piercings in ears (or anywhere else), and my mother never met a sailor collar she didn’t like. Go figure.

    • We had different flavors of Catholic here as well, but I didn’t sort that out until I was much older.

      Desert Marocain! That belongs on the list.

  18. January for months to come. Yes. Just gimme some Incense Pure and I’ll call it a day. The CdG series has morphed on me into something too synthetic, save for probably Avignon. Who knows. I’ll just add some skank to it all like I do everything and it’ll all be fine.

    • Ohnoes! The CdG series. I never did fall in love with one of them (Oarzawhatzit?) but I love the line and am glad it’s still available.

  19. I love any perfumes with incense. In the privacy of my home I will wear Norma Kamali’s Incense since I don’t want to scare anybody!

    • I love Kamali Incense but wore it once and woke up in the middle of the night with a racing heart because the fire alarm was about to go off…….wasn’t it? No fire after all, just NK incense. CdG Kyoto for me.

    • There are a lot of hardcore NK Incense fans on here, have no fear. I like NK Ceremony better, it’s a little … less, and my decant will still last me forever.

  20. No snow here March! It always sounds so romantic to me and I don’t want to visulalise words like slush or ice.
    I love Tauer’s Incense Extreme in the summer and have almost finished my decant which may mean I am allowed to contemplate a bottle. Can also appreciate Bois d’Encens.
    Mecca Balsam is a horrible embalming fluid to me – just cannot put it on skin.
    Strangely I never think of L’air du Desert Marocain as incense – I always think dry herbal amber and love it

    • Marocain qualifies as incense in my book. And it was horrible, heavy slush followed by snow, and a huge pain to shovel. Literal pain. I’ve taken an advil and some Icy Hot.

  21. My earliest memories of being in church are all about incense, candles, and mystical prayers in Latin. Although I no longer embrace Catholicism, those memories have colored my spiritual experiences, as I’ve moved on to explore the many parallel truths of eastern and western religions. For me, incense always stirs a sense of peace and spirituality.

    As for incense fragrances, I am forever moved by DK Black Cashmere, as well as Andy Tauer’s Incense Rose and L’Air du Desert Marocain. I haven’t sampled newer incense scents, because these few are my profoundly comforting winter loves. And yet, reading so much comment about newer incense scents, perhaps that is something I need to do. Thanks for the post, March!

    PS; 3 siblings, no piercings, and navy blue uniforms with saddle shoes. And yes! Sailor collars!

  22. Another Nu fan here. I love it and am on the hunt fr backup bottles. Also love Avignon and Messe de Minuit, particularly the former layered with Lubin Idole. Another gave is Fire of Isis from AromaSanctum, frankincense yum! I must try SSS Incense Pure as I am a big fan of her Winter Woods. Also on the list is the NK Incense – sounds as if a 1ml sample would more than do it!

    I think I will skip the Montale as Pine-Sol puts me right off- fake pine like that makes me think of that pine-scented sawdust they put on vomit when you are in school. No thank you!

    • Well, don’t take my word on the Montale. As I said, it’s getting a lot of love elsewhere. And the Incense Pure is lovely. I’m going to try Avignon layered with Idole, that sounds great.

  23. A delightful post, as usual. I need all these laughs and whoops-snow is falling at a most alarming rate, it passed the ‘romantic, isn’t that beautiful stage’ and…can’t anyone stop this? I’ve forgotten what grass looks like. No, not that kind.
    I’m wearing CdG Kyoto, my favorite of the CdG series which I received in the swap. I also have Montale White Musk, it’s so-so and Louban is extremely strange. I love AT’s concept of incense. They bring me to a different realm, I ‘experience’ his scents when I wear them.
    I remember going to Catholic church services with my cousin when I was very young and being of the Luther camp it’s very different-especially seen through a child’s eyes. The lingering smell of strange incense, lots of candles, strange bowls of water people patted on their forehead when entering/leaving the church, Latin mutterings. I always thought it was a little scary.

    • Yes, I know exactly what you mean. I found the whole thing very exotic as a child. In fact I was in Madrid one Easter as a kid and went to mass. I still remember it.

  24. Don’t own any incense scents at the moment, but there are 2 I’ve sampled that I really enjoyed – DK Black Cashmere and Pacifica Tibetan Mountain Temple. have to do some side by sides to see which I prefer, but the Pacifica sure is cheaper!

    I’ve only tried one Montale – Vanille Absolu as it was mentioned here or elsewhere recently as a fave vanilla. It’s a nice vanilla, but nothing I need to own since I already have plenty. Their page on luckyscent certainly is overwhelming!

    • That Pacifica is a really good incense, I like a number of things from their line. The price is excellent for the quality. They show up on here pretty regularly. I use their Mediterranean Fig soap in the bathroom and any number of people have asked me what it is, they like it so much.

  25. Had to pipe up for Annick Goutale Ambre Fetiche – Intense incense at first but a great sillage that you just can’t get enough of. For some reason I wear it with AG Musc Nomade – sweet, musky kind of anchors the heady incense.

    I feel your snow day pain, March. And you know they’ll have off tomorrow too. ARghhhhh!!!!!!!

    • Gah, at least our power’s still on, I hope yours is too! We did a lot of shoveling. I’m betting on no school tomorrow. They’ll let it melt until Monday.

      • Bing lied. IT LIED! I swear! I checked this am and they said you guys had sunshine and clear.

        🙁 not, huh?

        xo >-)

  26. ah the flying slush has finally turned to snow–favorite incense frags are Nu, Wazamba, Zagorsk, Japan Noir, and Amir. stay warm and let’s hope tomorrow’s a snow day too!

    • Ooooh yes! Love Nu EDP! Best winter fragrance EVER. Well, that and PG Coze.

    • Wow, Nu is all over here today. I wish I weren’t wearing so many other things, I’d throw some on.

      • I am going to make it my SOTE 🙂 A delightful fabuloso gifted me with a snootful and I haven’t really ‘snooted’ it yet

        xoxoxo>-)

  27. Well, I’m perplexed, March. I’ll start by saying I am head over heals for Full Incense. I can’t imagine where Pine-Sol or any reference to pine or chlorine come into the mix but for me it’s incense which is deep, dark, peppery, smoky, and almost ambery sweet which makes it different than any other I’ve tried. I’ve heard it reminds some of Avignon but where Avignon is stony, smoky gray, Full Incense, in my mind’s eye, is a deep amber brown. I love the half life of plutonium part though! haha! :)

    • I think your experience with the Montale is the usual one, not mine, which I tried (and maybe failed?) to make clear in the post. People are loving it. And I love your color-description.

  28. oddly enough, i now turn to sl ambre sultan for my incense fix. it is intensely resinous and incensey on me when i first spray it on, and i love it for that. it eventually gets to the amber, but i get more incense out of it than amber, so it rocks, as far as i am concerned. other incenses – paestum rose (cold, wet), AP strip (dusty, dry), and avignon for the obvious reasons.

    not sure i want to try the montale now… you and i match more than miss in our perfume choices.

  29. No childhood incense associations here, unless you count pretending to smoke joss sticks at the age of ten with my best friend, Teri, on the street corner.

    I have a sample of this and think it is ok — but just that. I don’t really reach for it. Or for any number of other incense frags I could easily have mistaken this one for. Even though incense as a descriptor always makes my heart leap a little bit (as do leather, aoud, hay, coffee and hyacinth), I am finding increasingly that straight incense perfumes are, well, a tad dull. Give me incense mixed perversely with leather and iris like Andy Tauer’s extraordinary Orris, or woody, contemplative incenses like Hindu Kush (wish it lasted longer) or cutting through some over-the-top florals like Chanel 22.

    Though i do find a light incense great for layering (I love Kamali Ceremony dabbed over Divine by Divine).

  30. Oh, um. I don’t think I’ve found my favourite incense yet. Although I love CdG Ouarzazate, oh, so much, and M/Mink too, with a passion, neither of them is what I’d call a straight incense. Bois d’Encens is utterly gorgeous and I would love to have some, but I can’t get over the price point – I just paid far less than that for something like 7 fl.oz. of vintage Bandit EdT, and I don’t love BdE nearly as much as that.

    Messe de Minuit has a special place in my heart, and I will probably always feel a need to have it around, but I rarely wear it.

    Black Cashmere is lovely, I should get some of that, and try the Norma Kamali. This Montale sounds intriguing, too..

    • I would definitely try Ceremony for a lighter, soothing incense. NK Incense was horrible to me — wet sawdust, very loud. If the idea of Black Cashmere intrigues you, you might want to sample YSL Nu in the EDP form (the EDT doesn’t quite cut it, in my opinion). It is widely available on the web.

    • Seconding the NK Ceremony, which I think is outstanding, rather than the straight Incense, which is big big big!

      • I don’t think I’ve ever found anything too big, possibly barring Angel on some days; so the idea of that huge NK Incense intrigues me. Transparent isn’t my cup of tea, I’d rather apply one careful spray and stink to high heaven. Nu and Ceremony both sound fantastic, though!

  31. Incense Full was a dead ringer on me for Micallef’s Shanaan, so no need to purchase – already own and love Shanaan. I am a huge incense fan. Favorites are Andy Tauer Incense Extreme, SSS Incense Pure, AG Encens Flamboyant, and the whole CdG incense series.

    NK Incense however was a near-death experience… had to scrub vigorously after 15 minutes, it sucked all the air out of the room.

  32. Late to the party–love the post and the comments. I have been wandering around with Montale samples, which are so potent, they are like a sapphire martini for me–love it but rarely indulge. I am a snuffaluppaguss when it comes to incense– I have a designated piggy bank for Amouage Opus 2–which, to me, is such a wonderful incense I almost feel elevated to another plane every time I use my precioussss samples. In the lovely swap you facilitated several weeks ago, a generous person included a sample of Cathedral (DSH? or Neil Morris? not sure)in my goody bag, and I have drained it dry. Think I will go light a cone of frankincense for bedtime–:)>-

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