Monday was horseback riding day.  I started lessons about 5-6 months ago, and we had to quit just when it was getting good because the weather was too unpredictable.  We had spent a lot of our time on the intricate dance between rider and horse on the ground, learning how to give and take with the horse, establishing a rhythm, all to make sure you didn’t get your butt tossed out of the saddle during your ride.  My lessons have resumed, and this time ON the horse.  Peggy left me with Valhalla (the horse I was riding) for a bit, and the first thing I did was bury my nose in her neck.  Horsie smell!  Lord, there is nothing else on the face of the earth that smells as comforting and perfect as that smell.  You know who knows that?  Olivia Giacobetti.  I think of Dzing  or horses every time I smell the other.

Olivia has done some other scents too, so let’s sniff.

Iunx L’ether de Iunx is like horsey incense, I swear.  Notes are myrrh, benzoin, rosewood, saffron, maple wood, white sandalwood.  While mostly incense of the softest, most beautifully delicate variety, the slightly sweet saffon and woods seem to combine almost into that soft, sweet leather smell that I associate with horses.  This thing is Grade A gorgeous.  How in the world have I been missing it so long?   If you are a fan of Giacobetti’s work or just incense, L’Ether is one of her scents you have to at least sniff.

Iunx No. 2 Eau Sento is an impossibly soft cedar. It reminds me a lot of the Japanese incense from Shoyeido that I burn.  Not intrusive, just at the perfect pitch of wood and intensity.  I feel like I’ve just curled up into a cedar-lined closet, pulled the doors shut, and can keep the world out for a while.

Iunx Splash Forte, March described it as a great cinnamon mouthwash, and I quote from her post, “To me it smells like cinnamon mouthwash, but really good, French, expensive, high-end cinnamon mouthwash. If you´re thinking cinnamon mouthwash wouldn´t be that refreshing on the skin in the heat of summer, you´d be wrong. It´s a fabulous, weird smell.”  And she’s right. There’s some woods that float around in it as well, maybe a little incense?  It really is weirdly perfect and addictive.  If they ever make a mouthwash that smells like this, I’m buying 100 bottles.

Denyse at Grain de Musc has also reviewed L’Ether and Splash Forte  L’Eau blanche, which is one I haven’t smelled.

Anyone know if these are coming to the U.S.?  For now, I know they are only available at the Hotel Costes in Paris, and just these three at this point.  I can probably do a couple of sample sets for two commenters, if you put a comment in.

Winners of the Evody sample sets from last week are:  Dana and Marko.  Just click on the contact us button over on the left and send me your address, and remind me it’s for the Evody samples! 

  • Flora says:

    Patty, how wonderful! The smell of horses is my very favorite aroma on Earth, and I have adored horses for as long as I can remember, even before I could walk. How well I know the exhilaration of horse and rider communication; even when it’s not going well, it is always exciting, and when it’s working there is nothing like it.

    I must get me some Dzing! one of these days since I live in the city now.

    Please enter me for the Iunx samples, I worship La Giacobetti! 😡

  • ggs says:

    While I’m sure The Perfumed Court will be able to keep us in decants or samples of these, for those hankering for a FB, I propose that a request to an enterprising niche shop owner *might* find us someone willing to negotiate with Hotel Costes for a US outlet.

    Nathan Branch blogged recently about how Luckyscent was able to obtain the fabulously skanky & hard-to-get Party in Manhattan, after Nathan asked about it. (Props to Nathan, who also publishes killer photos of perfume bottles that I want to _frame_.)

    Hmmmm.. Joe Garces spends time in Paris regularly (Robert Piguet) and has imported a boatload of niche perfumes recently to Turtle Bay Spafumerie in NYC. Assignment for the Sniffa Spring Fling attendees–talk up this idea to Joe :d (I have to miss it this year, alas.)

  • Eileen says:

    *Plugs ears and sings “la-la-la-la I can’t hear you” *

    Drat.. didn’t work.. Why do I keep reading Perfume Posse when all you do is make me want unobtainable scents? :o:d The Iunx line sounds like just my thing, with a leather, horsey vibe.. I’ve only spent a little time with horses at summer camp as a young ‘un, but I wish it was more. It is a powerful feeling being on a horse, and the smell is so earthy.

    Please include me in the draw!

  • rachaelg says:

    a horsey-insence sounds right up my alley. please include me in the drawing, and thanks as always for both your generous give-aways and the wonderful reviews, which are both a daily delight and a bonding point for me and my mother. we love your blog!

  • Dawn says:

    I can remember looking at the Iunx website, always meaning to order, but alas, never doing so. There were also body products, too. I would love to be entered for a chance at a sample or two.

  • hollyb says:

    Both sound amazing, please enter me in the drawing!

  • Magpie says:

    Oh, horses ::happy sigh::. One of my coworkers always asks after my horse bc he says it never fails to make me smile (and apparently he likes to see my smile, which is another issue entirely). I did not start riding till a few years ago, when I was very much a grownup–those of you who think you can’t, yes you can! You can! You just have to find the right instructor, which is hard, but not impossible. Do it!!


    Cheerleading over. I’d love to be entered into the drawing. Horsie/stable smells are the best!

  • Melissa says:

    I rode for a number of years as a kid and like others, I still love the smell of horses and barns. I remember waiting until the very last minute before dinnertime to wash the last faint scents of horse sweat and hay from my hands and arms. I would love to ride again, but I have a fear of falling as an adult. Kids bounce. Adults don’t!

    I recently received a small decant of Eau Sento, which I found to be beautiful, though a bit cold. I would like very much to try the others, so please enter me in the drawing.

  • annunziata says:

    The mention of horses inspires me to de-lurk after happily reading the posts here for many months. Congratulations on your lessons. I’ve returned to dressage after a very long illness, and it’s been a great joy in my life! Hope to be showing at first level fairly soon. Angela at NST suggested Bal a Versailles and Vie de Chateau for riding, and now I will also be trying the IUNX L’ether which sounds absolutely perfect. Of course, I need to spend more money…I don’t know why none of my passions in life are inexpensive 😕

  • Kate says:

    These sound lovely, and you describe them so well. Please count me in for the drawing!

  • Jane says:

    These sound right up my alley. Thanks so much for entering me in the draw, especially since I may not get to try them otherwise. thanks as always for your generosity Patty.

  • carole says:


    I had a pony when I was small. I was taught to always look after his feet, and one of the things I loved most after a ride was to carefully remove all dirt and debris from his complex little hooves. I even loved that smell, of horse hoof mixed with wet barn and dung and oats. May I be included in the draw, too?
    Hope your lesson progress well!

  • Pantera Lilly says:

    I love horses, but I don’t ride. I would love to be in the draw, thanks!

  • tmp00 says:

    Horsey incense? Yum!

  • Amy H says:

    Your descriptions sound fabulous — I would love to try IUNX! God knows I may never make it to Paris . Please count me in the draw.

  • rappleyea says:

    Since this is coming to you from central Ky. and the heart of the Thoroughbred industry, you know you’re preaching to the choir re horses. Congratulations on your lessons. As the old saying goes, there’s nothing so good for the inside of a man (or woman!) as the outside of a horse.

    And combine their wonderful smell with the aroma in the fall of tobacco drying in the barns and it is heaven.

    These fumes sound wonderful as well; please include me in the draw.

  • March the Impressed says:

    Good for you for riding a horse!

  • Samantha Lowry says:

    Those sound so good and I’d love to be entered…especially since apparently they’re so hard to get otherwise, thanks!!


  • amanda says:

    L’ether sounds wonderful. Please enter me for the sample set drawing.

  • sara says:

    I have never ridden a horse! Thanks for the vicarious experience! I would love to enter the drawing. Thanks!! Sara

  • loledinburgh5 says:

    Hi there!
    This is my first post in this wonderful blog and I agree with you:Dzing !and horses!Olivia Giacobetti is a genius and I love both the already mentioned Dzing! and Passage D’Enfer not forgeting the airy En Passant.Please count me in the drawing and thanks for this blog to you and March,I am enjoying and learning a lot xx.Lole.

  • NancyN says:

    For the stunning beauty of it all, I love to look at Belgians. The reality was a Shetland pony when we were kids. And I ususally rode the blind horse, Beauty, at the farm when my family went to ride Champ. Love the stable smell. please enter me in the drawing.

  • sweetlife says:

    Oooh, yes, please include me in this draw. These sound perfect for that transitional moment from winter to spring.

    And congratulations on your horse riding classes, my god, that sounds just perfect. Getting back on the horse and all that, plus the sheer sensual pleasure of it…

  • karin says:

    We had a horse when I was a teenager – mostly for my mom’s enjoyment cause she’s a horse lover. But I just couldn’t get into it then. Since I hit my 40’s, though, I’ve had a desire to ride. No idea why! Haven’t done it yet, though. Maybe I need to look into some local stables…

    Patty, not to be greedy, but did you announce the Vanille Galante draw winners? Didn’t see it anywhere. No need to include me in the lunx draw. Thanks! 🙂

  • Olfacta says:

    I rode as a kid, taking lessons for several years (from ages 10 to 13)preceded by two years of horse-craziness. It was the best thing I ever did as a — what do they call them now? Tween. It’s a cliche, the horse/girl thing, but I think that learning to control all that power with a slight touch of hands or heels (I rode English)teaches a young girl something she will never learn from books. And that smell! Leather tack; the smell of saddle soap, horse sweat, even manure. I still swoon when I walk through a stable. And of course there is nothing on earth more beautiful than a finely bred horse like the one you picture. Maybe this is why I like the classic leather scents so much…hmmm.

    I’d love to enter the drawing, thanks!

  • Sue says:

    *Sigh* Why must perfumers play this exlusivity game? At least the new Le Labo is a regular release.

    On a related note, Patty, have you tried the Memo scents? They’re exclusive to France but sound really lovely and have gorgeous bottles. I’m espcially enthralled by Siwa’s notes: aldehydes, cinnamon, popcorn and vanilla!

  • Kate says:

    count me in. however when I think of “horsey” I think of those intense top notes of Serge Lutens Muscs Koublai Khan. :-&

  • Connie says:

    What a beautiful horse! Were it not for my crippling fear of falling off and breaking both legs or worse I would love to learn horseback riding… very brave woman, you are.^:)^

    The scents sound wonderful, please include me, thanks!

  • Francesca says:

    I had the same question as Musette–is that Valhalla in the picture? Gorgeous creature, lovely photo.

    My first time ever on a horse was a 10-km ride as a sidetrip on a yoga retreat in Costa Rica. What was I thinking????? I managed not to fall off.

    I like Giacobetti’s work, too, so I’d love to give the Iunxes a sniff.

  • elizablue says:

    These sound amazing! Every one sounds delectable, and I am a whore for incense and woods scents…you make me want to go smell these in paris! Please count me in! Merci, ma chere!

  • Jan V says:

    Horseback riding is something I’ve not done unless you count the occasional “sitting atop a horse” which of course, doesn’t really count! They are magnificent though and really learning to interact with them must be very rewarding. I’m guessing that your funk is a thing of the past!! Good riddance.

    Isn’t it amazing how wonderful our animal friends’ scents are? Whether horse, dog or cat, they smell so fresh and so wild too. I’d love to try out those Iunx samples too, they sound great. I’d love a chance in the drawing.

  • Zazie says:

    Giacobetti, of course…

  • Zazie says:

    Hi Patty!
    I love Olivia Giavobetti’s work… Intersting, delicate, and supremely wearable is the way I envision most of her fragrances. I would love to try the three Iunx – the first two in particular (“mouthwash” is somewhat a scary epithet for a perfume 😉 !)
    …so please enter me in the draw.

  • carmencanada says:

    Patty, I find the IUNX remarquable but they’re all a little ethereal (i.e. fleshless) to me, like super-sophisticated ambient scents rather than skin scents.
    As far as I know, there is no intention at all of exporting the line. They don’t even ship. It’s the Hotel Costes boutique or nothing.

  • Musette says:

    Is that your horse in the photo? I am taking hitch classes, come spring. My Percherons need a new driver – why not me?! Yeah, right. Nothing says 😮 like putting 6 Percherons to the trot.

    Also, nothing says 😡 like the smell of a healthy, happy draft horse!

    would love to be in the drawing – haven’t smelled any of these!


  • zeram1 says:

    Sounds lovely, and I’d love to be in the drawing as well.

  • Violetnoir says:

    Please count me in!


  • Natalie says:

    These sound amazing, and I would love to be entered in the drawing. And good for you for learning something new — I was going to suggest taking up a new hobby in your malaise post, but you beat me to it by a nose!

  • Jarvis says:

    Hello, Patty! I love the IUNX scents. L’Ether reminds me of Passage D’Enfer, but with rose. I’m not sure I got “leather” or “horsey,” but I will have to go back and check. Eau Sento, which I love, reminds me of CdG Zagorsk. Has a similar cold, crisp smell to it, like a mountain forest. L’Eau Blanche was lovely, ethereal, lots of iris. Splash Forte, alas, did not work for me (perhaps it was the cinnamon mouthwash that did me in). And I think the candles are amazing (I wish I had brought an extra suitcase, in order to be able to transport the whole line back home with me from Paris).

    As far as I know, they are exclusive to the Costes store in Paris for the foreseeable future.

  • Elle says:

    I love Splash Forte! L’Ether sounds wonderful and don’t think I’ve ever sniffed it. Is it one of the more fleeting IUNX scents?
    I have always absolutely adored the idea of horseback riding. Everything about it appeals to me…until I get down to the reality of it when I realize that each time I ride, I find myself completely awed by how powerful the gorgeous creature I’m sitting on is and am also taken aback by how incredibly high up off the ground I feel. Then there’s the awkward fact that I can’t shake my fear of being thrown and galloping fast scares me to death. And horses inevitably sense this. Not a happy thing to have your horse happily know she is in complete alpha position. 🙁 I am a total woos. Anyway, I’m glad you’re taking lessons and hope you continue to post about them!

    • March says:

      Hon. Scent twin. L’Ether is SO GORGEOUS. I had totally forgotten the IUNXen had returned to us. I think I have a review of it on here somewhere from a million years ago. It’s light but doesn’t disappear right away. Not as light as the Eaux….

      • Elle says:

        Just ordered a sample! Good to know it’s not as light as some of them. Sounds stunning!