Le Labo Perfume Review – Lys 41 and Le Labo Ylang 49

If it’s summer, the sun is bright, you are sweltering in the shade with your fresh-squeezed lemonade and vodka.  That means it’s big freaking white floral perfume season!

white floral perfume - le labo lys and le labo ylang

Le Labo Lys 41 has notes of lily, jasmine, tuberose absolute, woods, Madagascar vanilla, tiare, musks. What a glorious tuberose fragrance it is. Oh, yeah, it’s lily too.  I think of it as the Hermessence Vanille Galante with more lily and tuberose than vanilla.  It has a soft wispy warmth with the vanilla and musk that tamp down the white florals and keep them from indole overload.  It’s soft and glorious and a delight to wear.  If you’re not fond of the warmer aspects of vanilla fused into a white floral perfume, you might want to steer clear. I think they got the balance exactly right

Le Labo Ylang 49 has notes of ylang ylang, pua noa noa, (gardenia from Tahiti), patchouli, oakmoss, vetiver, sandalwood and benjoin.  Ylang wrapped in a woody incense chypre cloak.  Yup, who knew how perfect this could be.  My former favorite Ylang perfume, the discontinued Lorenzo Villoresi, has now been dislodged, and Le Labo Ylang 49 is in that spot.  Not that I have a lot of choices, but at least all the ylang perfumes I know are pretty darn great.

Le Labo Ylang 49 opens with a definite chypre tang, building an oakmoss/vetiver alcove in the trees, inviting the incense to spread its rich cloak on the ground.  In walks the delicate, earthy, beautiful and slightly feral ylang oozing puffs of gardenia, collapsing into the beautiful alcove in tinkly giggles. Oh, wait, that’s me giggling so happily.

And Le Labo Ylang does make me happy.  It’s moved up on the favorite white floral perfume list to a fairly high-ranking slot – like top 5, mostly because it changes so much and keeps becoming something else as beautiful, but different.  There is nothing straight-forward about it

As Ylang 49 dries down, it changes, loses some of the chypre sharpness, easing into that soft, buttery, luxurious ylang/gardenia. There is no phase of it that I don’t like.  If you really want to curl your toes with white floral-gasm, spray them both on at the same time.  Seriously, it’s heavenly.   Miss Non-Blonde has a review of both of the Le Labo Perfumes, I’m linking her review of Ylang 49

And we’ll do a giveaway of four sample sets of both fragrances to commenters.  White floral, hellyeah or hellno?  Think wearing white floral perfume in summer is goofy or genius?

This is interesting too!

78 Comments

  1. Would love to try these two! I adore white florals and I love them best in the summer. After all, that’s the natural climate of most of those flowers. Some of my best memories of growing up in Louisiana are the rich heady scents that filled the air, from osmanthus in late February to gardenias and magnolias in deep summer. So I’m using more white florals as the temp increases. Lilies and ylang ylang in summer? Genius, definitely.

    • I visited a farm in rural Louisiana a few years ago and spent most evenings sitting on the front porch next to the immense gardenia plant. It must’ve been 6-8 ft. tall and 5 ft. across. Oh my word! The aroma was heavenly.

      • Tell me about it! My mother’s big gardenia bush is off the path from house to home office, and you get unexpected wafts as you walk back and forth. I’ve been trying to duplicate the effect with very small dabs of Velvet Gardenia that burst unexpectedly into my notice as I walk around the house, then subside just as rapidly. Ah, memory…

  2. I am reserved, practical and I love me some white florals. Who would have guessed? Something about Carnal Flower, or better yet Tuberose Criminelle just works for me.

  3. Hellyeah! Orange blossom, tiare, clover, linden. Bring it! Awesome giveaway, please enter me in the draw. Thank you!

  4. Helyeah! I do have to be careful to apply lightly but white florals in the summer are great. It gets really really hot and humid here and not sweating is just not gonna happen. Big white florals mix well with that warm clean sweat scent. I am really dying to try Ylang 49 and hope that when I finally do it lives up to my fantasy. Chypre ylang gardenia- mmmmm.

  5. I have yet to brave a BWF in the heat of summer, but FeralJasmine’s observation about summer being the natural climate for most of ’em makes perfect sense, and has me willling to try!

  6. I would love to try both of these. I love white florals, but usually wear them at home.
    At work, I prefer lighter scents.
    Thanks for the giveaway–they sound fabulous!!

  7. Oh hellyeah most definitely. Summer heat lets them bloom in a whole new way…like 2 perfumes in one.

  8. I generally don’t like BWF anytime of the year…but I can see Carnal Flower working in the heat, if applied with a light hand. Thanks for the draw.

  9. Oooh, dying to smell these. I almost bought the Poivre when I was at Harrods, but because of the high price tag I walked away. But I’m dying to find something new and exciting for summer! Merci for the draw (and I live in the U.S., in case it matters!).

  10. I would say that summer is the only time that I can wear white florals. I’ve been hearing great things about this one and would love to sample. Thanks for the chance!

  11. I wouldn’t wear Manoumalia in ANY weather, lol, but Lys Mediterr- would work any time of the year. I love Donna Karen Gold but would be hesitant to wear it when its very hot. Can I choose hellmaybe?

    • Donna Karan Gold has been fine on me when I’ve been sweaty, but I discovered just last Sunday that it turns a bit sour when I’m out in the sun.

  12. I was fascinated in a recent blind-sniff with non-perfume-nerds how nose-wrinkly they found white florals (which I have always had a taste for). As for me, I’m very psyched about the new LeLabos after I accidentally fell for Fleurd’Oranger against my will…

  13. Oh hells to the yes! I’m a BWF girl to begin with, and Le Lebo makes it all the better! Would love to win this draw. MIGHT make me mourn my Aldehyde 44 a little less…ok, not likely but I’d love to try these! Thanks!

  14. Love Le Labo (mostly) and happy to try anything, particularly if it stretches beyond my comfort zone, which some vanillas have. I haven’t played much in the big white floral playground, but I’d love a dabble.

  15. If you found the right white floral it could be great choise for the summer.First I would think about neroli scent but I was surprised that SSS Jour Ensoleille worked for me in the summer heat.May be because of the chypre structure the white folwers accord doesn’t become overwhelming.That makes me very curious about Ylang 49.Thanks for the review!

  16. I think it depends on the white floral. For me some work and some don’t. Always willing to try new ones to see whether they work or not. Been dying to try these two new LeLabo’s along with L’Artisan Caligna and Diptyque Eau Moheli.

  17. I wore Songes this past summer here in Sydney, but I think it would suit any weather. I’d love to try the new Le Labo, especially the ylang!

  18. Sultry! As long as I don’t wilt in the heat, why not bloom? Please enter me in the draw – would love to try these…

  19. Love big white florals, clutching my bottle of Songes and hoping we might, just might have a a day warm enough to really appreciate it. Would love to try the Le Labo it sounds wonderful!

  20. Yes, yes, yes to white florals in summer. I have been wearing Carnal Flower for the past few days. Please enter me in the drawing.

  21. I think so-going to give it a gentle try-maybe not today having a root canal, ahhhh-any suggestions?

  22. I am just beginning to find what works for me so I would love to try a BWF. Thanks for the draw!

  23. BWF’s are usually pretty potent so they are near and dear to me. Hellyeah. I love blooming in the heat.

  24. Please enter me! I love white florals, they áre my bag’, as one might say. These two both sound fabulous and are on my ‘to try’ list. Thus far my favorite white florals have been Songes, Fracas, and Jasmin et Cigarette.

  25. White florals scare the bejeezus out of me but like a fascinating piece of art that I don’t quite understand, I keep finding myself drawn back to them. Ylang is the easiest for me to wear so the new Le Labo is already on my “must try” list. I think summer is the perfect time for them, they’re just so BIG!

    • I’m with you there, Lynn Marie. My memories of growing up in the Deep South include ladies wearing lush white florals in summer, and how intensely feminine they smelled. I do recall that one woman in our circle wore Jungle Gardenia, the original one, and it was wonderful. I’ve never smelled it since leaving home, and would love to if the original were still around.

      • Hi, lady — just letting you know that Surrender to Chance carries Jungle Gardenia. I thought I remembered seeing it there a while back and when I read your comment, I went back and checked and there it is.

        • Thanks so much, Anne, I had just thought of that possibility myself, and there it was. Have to order some on payday, and also the Jardenia,which I’ve never smelled. I think I’m probably up to it; those of us who grew up in steamy climates are used to flowering and decay going on at the same time!

  26. Yes, yes, yes to the BWF in summer! It’s as though the heat makes them reveal facets that are hidden by colder weather. Thank you for the draw. 🙂

  27. These both sound really yummy. As to the weather, I’ve always been of the opinion that my personal weather inside, how I’m feeling, has more to do with my perfume choices than the weather outside. But for sure some flowers just bloom in the heat.

  28. White florals, yay! I’d love to try the 41 & the 49 since I’ve never tried ANY Le Labo at all. I think summer is a fine time for the big white floral since that is when these types of flowers bloom their little heads off. The heat helps them release their inviting fragrances, and the wonderful aromas take some of the pain out of sweltering in the wretched heat. Thanks for the draw.

  29. I love giant white florals, and I love them the most in summertime! What better time to feel so extravagant, so carefree, so swaying-in-a-hammock-on-a-pristine-beach-in-the-South-Pacific?! I get a little woozy just thinking about it. Now let me go get my Fracas fix….

  30. I love big white florals in the summer time. It seems like the most natural time to wear them, provided you don’t apply with too heavy a hand. I love wearing Amoureuse in the summer, but I have to apply just a drop, because that one is an especially big heavy hitter.

  31. Genius definitely! What’s wrong with Malle’s Carnal flower or SL Fleurs d’Orangers? I can wear them anytime. Thanks for the draw.

  32. Put me in the helMaybe category too. I love some of them but not all. What makes it called a Big White Floral anyway? Are the flowers that big, are they all white, or is it just the perception of a big scent?

    I love gardenias, and magnolias and jasmine, but sometimes the sheer “bigness” of the perfume is too much for me. Fracas is tough for me to take (I keep trying) but Petite Fracas was an eye opener for me when I tried it. Carnal Flower is lovely and I own and adore Sweet Redemption (is orange blossom technically a white floral?). I think it’s maybe the tuberose that throws me.

  33. It really depends on the big white floral and the day in summer for me. If it is tuberose dominant, forget about it. I can’t stand Fracas in the dead of winter let alone in the middle of a heatwave. A La Nuit can be just fine in the summer but the creamy aspect can overwhelm.

  34. Hellsyeah!! I looove white florals— and I love le labo. I’m dying to try these especially after the comparison with iris 39.

  35. Please don’t enter me in your fab draw – I’ve ordered samples from STC (I just couldn’t wait for these!) and it wouldn’t be fair if I won.

    I love Carnal Flower in the heat, it really opens up a different facet, almost freshens it. Songes however, is definitely a Winter only scent for me, which is a good thing with our weather! Our Summer was on a Saturday this year, which was nice, it’s normally on a Monday 🙂

  36. The only BWF I currently wear is Fracas and I do enjoy it more in the summer when the intense floral scent seems most appropriate. I would love to be entered ito the drawing but will be away on vacation (YAY) without access to email/internet from tomorrow until July 3.

  37. I just read reviews of these somewhere else recently and they sound better and better. After cowering in fear from white florals for years, I’ve been gingerly dipping my toe in the pool for the last few months and what can I say, I am slowly falling in love with a few. Thanks for the giveaway opportunity! I am looking forward to trying my new white floral samples (thanks, fairy godmothers) in the heat of summer.

  38. DNEM, of course…but I just had to stop in and say you are singin’ MY SONG, baby! I am the Quing of wearing the biggest, whitest florals in the biggest heat EVAH! 95F? Time to bust out Carnal Flower and Fracas!

  39. I’d love to try these…they both sound amazing. I’ve been wearing a lot of white florals this summer and I can’t keep myself away from the Carnal Flower!

  40. If dear Musette is Quing of the BWF, I’m one of her ladies-in-waiting. (Actually, how awesome would that be? Rilly rilly awesome, I’m thinkin’.) Carnal Flowah, Amoureuse, DK Gold, Cristina Bertrand #3, any one of the gazillion tuberosey samples I have lying around here… Oh, yeah, Sand & Sable, this is the time for that.

    I had dismissed these because a) they’re Le Labos, and LL generally just kind of annoys me and b) I don’t really need anything new and c) I have been into the leather lately. BUT. I keep hearing good things about them, and I adore my BWFs, I do, so yeah. Helzyeh. Please enter me, please.

    Incidentally? Memoir Woman is an enormous white floral with leather and chypre and weird herbals, and I am addicted to it now.

  41. Here in the Deepish South, it’s hard to imagine (for me anyway) wearing anything that isn’t crisp and full of citrus or vetiver during the day. But at night all florals make sense. I wish I could find a gardenia that comes close to the real thing, though, which is blooming now.

  42. I love white opulent, heady flowers pretty much all year around. I also enjoy. though not as often, soft whispers of white petals. I am loving right now, in the heady category, Velvet Gardenia, and in the soft as a feather, Liliana by Tocca. I am dying to try these new le labo. They sound just perfect! Thanks for the giveaway.

    • Cheers for Velvet Gardenia! I can’t believe it was d/c’d but then I seldom run across someone else who likes it, which is probably the reason.

  43. I really like my Maxim’s Pour Homme in the summer. I love the idea of white elegant flowers in a man’s cologne. Thanks for the giveaway. Ylang Ylang sounds perfect.

  44. BWFs are genius, definitely…winter, spring summer & fall. Never tried Le Labo, but would love to, esp the chypre!

  45. I just have been given a sample of Le Labo’s Iris 39 from a wonderful posse fragrant fairy godmother (pokeypoodle, thanks so much!), and I love it! I had never tried a Le Labo fragrance before, but if they are anything like Iris 39, count me in. I’d love to try these new fragrances. Thanks for the draw.

  46. I can do white florals in the summer. I like how they bloom in humid weather. I haven’t tried a lot from Le Labo but I think I need to remedy that and try these two. They both sound interesting. Thanks for the draw!

  47. white florals, hellyeah! and summer is the perfect time for them! Just bought me some Olene to wear this summer.

  48. hellyeah white florals always-my favorite is carnal flower.thanks for the draw.

  49. IMHO white florals are best in the summer heat. Sitting outside in the warm evening wafting something fabulous. Thanks for a fabulous draw.

  50. Having grown up in the Deep South, I’ve always adored big white florals on the stem/vine/bush/tree, but so far I’ve been cautious about putting BWF perfumes on my skin in the summer heat. Time to change that!! My very first Le Labo sample, Iris 39, is on it’s way and I’m very excited about it. Would love to be entered in the draw for these, too — thanks!

  51. I love white florals! I’ve been looking for just the right one. Would love to sample this.

  52. White florals are my go to all year round. I am really looking forward to trying both of these!

  53. Oh, hellyeah. All the big white florals I’m so “meh” about the rest of the year are GREAT the second it hits 80F or so. I’m looking forward to trying both of these eventually, but am having a really hard time *not* just going out to snag a sample of the Ylang rightthisverynow.

    Thanks for the draw!

  54. White florals are a Hellyeah for me if they have more than 4 floral different notes! 😉 Some white floral can be great and some can be really boring but that is also a personal taste issue. 😀

  55. Ooh, please enter me in the drawing. I love everything I’ve tried from
    Le Labo. I love big white flowers any time of year, but maybe that’s because we barely get seasons here in San Francisco.

  56. I would love to be entered into the drawing! LeLabo is hit or miss for me but I always like to try them. White florals are a maybe for me in summer, just depends on the scent!

  57. That’s a big YES to white florals. Thanks for the drawing.

  58. White florals anytime – yeah! The Ylang sounds amazing – I’m going to have to try it soon!

  59. I have mixed feelings about white florals – sometimes I love them, sometimes there is too much indole for my liking. I never see them as boring though. And white florals in summer – genius. I’d like to be entered into the drawing, please!

  60. Hell yeah white florals in the summer! Back when I had no budget for fragrance purchases, I would pluck jasmine and gardenia to pin in my hair and feel uplifted by the scent released all day. Now and then, when I visit my dad’s garden in the summer, I still do!

  61. Lemonade and vodka – sounds divine and so do these perfumes! Please enter me in the draw!

  62. I’ve just discovered this blog, giving me another excuse to fritter away my time on perfume blogs and sites! I was looking at Le Le Labo Ylang and thinking that sounds ideal for the warmer weather, as you say this weather does bring out a craving for white florals, but I’ve having to economise for a few months for a house move, so I sought a cheaper white floral in Cartier’s Baiser Vole, which is really impressive for a mainstream perfume, yet not quite right (a touch of clean shampoo, salicylates maybe, which only disappears in really hot weather, and I’m in Scotland!) But I LOVE the bottle

  63. Tried Le Labo 49 and liked it . Very interesting fragrance. Not very heavy,bright and lush.

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