Serge Lutens Vitriol d’oeillet

Serge Lutens Vitriol d’oeillet translates loosely as “angry carnation”.  I suppose one could look at it that way, in the way that one could indeed refer to a chihuahua as “barking fiercely”.  I’s a matter of perspective.  If you’re a small rodent it might be terrifying; to a doberman it must seem like comic over-reaching.

Coming from a house known for olfactory fireworks that have sent people running, the name seems the latter.  Especially since on me the scent is nice.  Just nice.  It’s carnation all right, starting with a dainty burst of pepper then adding in ylang-ylang.  It doesn’t do very much the progression is fairly linear to the slightly woody finish and it’s not there for more than a few hours on my skin.  If you’d handed it to me in another bottle I’d never think it was a Lutens at all, certainly not one that’s “a burst of fragrant spikes” that’s “fraught with anger”. Serge Lutens Vitriol d’oeillet the Lutens for people who don’t like Lutens, and I’ll pass.

$140 at Aedes and LuckyScent, shortly to be at Barneys as well.  I received my sample from Luckyscent.  Serge Lutens Vitriol d’oeillet sample also available at Surrender to Chance

  • Sherri M. says:

    It is interesting and well executed. I don’t think SL has lost his “edginess” with this one–not at all! This is certainly not “nice” the way vintage Bellodgia, Etro Dianthus and the DSH carnation are.

    In small sprays it is soft, but beware: sprayed from the bottle I got the full effect the ad copy describes: “carnation with teeth”, “carnation in leather”, and clove which is nice but also (my own note) lots of pepper (did I get the batch with the unmixed clump of pepper?…lol).

    All this smells good–compelling, elegant, warm but aloof–but unfortunately as I’ve posted before majorly messed with my allergies (read migraine and red eyes baaaad). Like many Chanels and Hermes, this is one I can only admire from a distance.

  • nozknoz says:

    I have a commercial spray sample. I sort of like it (a carnation leather!) and think it would be GREAT on the right persons, e.g., a dandyish English guy or well-dressed French guy. No one I actually know, unfortunately!

    I plan to acquire a decant and see how it actually wears, but it is entirely the WRONG kind of thing for une femme d’un certain age. :-(

  • Teri says:

    I am of the firm belief that the Serge Lutens making fragrances today is the ‘pod’ Serge. ‘Pod’ Serge emerged shortly before the creation of that tepid cologne thing and has been with us ever since.

    Seriously, after sniffing this scent, if I were a carnation, I’d be angry, too.

    Did any of us ever foresee a couple of years ago that we’d be discussing a Serge scent and calling it ‘nice’? The phrase ‘damning with faint praise’ comes to mind.

  • Homura says:

    Gyaaah. Tom, this review makes me sad. I haven’t really liked a Lutens (export) since Fille en Aiguilles. Please tell me De Profundis is outstanding! I don’t want this to be happening to Lutens.

  • Joanna says:

    I just got done reading A Discovery Of Witches, (For lack of a better description it’s a thinking adult’s Twilight.) In it the very sexy vampire is often described as smelling like carnations, (When he doesn’t smell like cloves.) It has made me want to find some sort of wonderful carnation scent and force my husband to wear it. While nothing I’ve read so far makes me think Vd’o is going to be my kind of scent I’m going to have to sample it, (On my husband) merely because you mention chihuahuas. We had a chihuahua once…for a few months. She loved me dearly but drew blood on everyone else. My husband hated her. When she bit the children I rehomed her but I still respect her for being the most fearsome 3lbs I’ve ever met.

    • jen says:

      Hang on, I quit reading after the book review and reserved it at the library! And I love carnation and clove.

      • Joanna says:

        jen the book is fantastic! Can’t wait for the sequel. Scent is a reoccuring theme throughout the story. Diorissimo is mentioned and even though it’s not something I’d otherwise wear it made me want a bottle for my collection just so I can pick it up and smell this story.

        • Francesca says:

          I’m glad to hear you enjoyed the book! I designed the interior. The author is an absolutely lovely woman, too. Can’t wait for the next one, either, after that ending!

          • Joanna says:

            Francesca I’m giddy to be talking to someone associated with the book! Will you be designing the interior on the next one as well?
            I can tell you that I loved it so much that although I originally purchased it as an ebook I had to go buy it in hardcover because I needed to have it in my actually for real library and not just my virtual bookshelf.
            I can’t imagine Deborah Harkness as being anything other than brilliant and warm and lovely. I’ve been fascinated with alchemical illustrations since I was little which is what initally drew me to the book but I’m absolutely enamored with the story. Such beautiful allegory.
            Sorry Tom, your review had nothing to do with vampires, alchemy or Diorissimo. It all started with a carnation. :)

          • Francesca says:

            I certainly hope I will be! And I want Eric Bana to play Matthew.

          • Joanna says:

            I was picturing Clive Owen as Matthew. I hope Gerard Butler is Hammish even if he doesn’t quite match the character description in the book. I would pay to watch Gerard Butler tie his shoes.

    • tammy says:

      Okay, I don’t think it has a chihuahua connection, but Lorenzo Villoresi Garafano would be rather fetching on a sexy vampire, or ones husband, I would think, and I’d be happy to send you my sample.

      • Joanna says:

        Omg that’s awesome! Thank you! The vamp in the story is tall muscular and French and my husband is average height, barrel chested and Scotch-Irish. But with the right cologne and if I close my eyes… lol

        • tammy says:

          Well, I have a fair amount of Scots-Irish in my own veins, and God knows the unkind could call me barrel chested as well, so this is perfect!!

          tlschuster AT msn DOT com; if you send me your address, I’ll get it in the mail later this week.

      • Tom says:

        gonna have to try that..

  • maggiecat says:

    I like carnations but wasn’t impressed with the copy for this one – until i read the review. AWESOME lady, and since my husband and I ride Harleys AND go to the symphony AND are active in our church AND I’m a passionate perfumista, I think I might like it just fine!

  • Musette says:

    If I’m feeling a bit dianthus I go for Caron Bellodgia or Poivre. This Serge sounds a bit Sound and Fury to me.

    xo >-)

    ps. I have Rottweilers. They are mystified by Chihuahuas and, I think, a bit scared (because they know they can’t kill them without getting in a LOT of trouble, so they have to sit there and TAKE all that :-@

  • Carla says:

    Oh, I guess De Profundis is a chrysanthemum and not a carnation, but I’m not sure I’d know the difference. It was a spicy masculine floral. Very beautiful for a short time only.

  • Mrs.Honey says:

    I sampled V D’O from a bottle at the Sephora on the Champs Elysee and had the same not lasting problem. Of course, we were on a whirlwind tour of Paris and my husband frog marched me around the city, so perhaps that had something to do with the not lasting. I was given a sample at the Palais Royal. It lasts a bit longer and I like it. I do get a bit of stewed fruit and a dry-down not dissimilar to Daim Blond.

  • Carla says:

    I got back from Paris yesterday. I visited the Lutens shop at the Palais Royal on Sep 1, the day De Profundis arrived!! I was so excited. I knew it was out in Sep, but wasn’t sure it would be there on the 1st. For one hour, it was a very pretty, well-blended spicy carnation, rather more masculine than feminine. Then it disappeared. I do wish Lutens would mail the exclusives to the US, and I wish they could be sprayed. I don’t like how the SA’s at his shop just brush a tiny bit on your wrist with a blotter. For ten minutes I hesitated, mostly for the idea of being one of the first to own De Profundis, then I saved myself 120 euros.

  • Ann says:

    Good morning, everyone. I tried this in a dab sample vial and kind of liked it, for all of the 35 minutes it lasted. Maybe I’ll try it sprayed, just to see. I’ve not smelled a carnation-based perfume before, so I really have nothing with which to compare this.

  • Ari says:

    I am not even a small rodent and I find chihuahuas terrifying. I blame Paris Hilton.
    I visited the Serge Lutens boutique in Paris a week ago, and this was not there yet. With all the tepid reviews, I doubt I’ll go out of my way to hunt it down.

    • Tom says:

      I’d love to hear about De Profundis..

      • DJ says:

        I tried De Profundis on Thursday afternoon at the Paris boutique. I loved the idea–chrysanthamum. On me, though, on the dry down, it smelled…like soap and linden leaves or something. Really pleasant soap. I had that on one arm and Borneo on the other, lol

        I like Vitriol and have a bottle. In my little world, it is an easy one to wear. I love many of Lutens frangrances, but on others; my skin doesn’t like them. I have tried almost all of them and the only ones I have are Vitriol and Boxeuse (but other people, because of me, have purchased MKK, for instance).

  • dinazad says:

    Oh, I don’t know…… My first impression of Vitriol was definitely “nice”, but then it started to wildly oscillate between elegant and screechy, office-compatible and olfactory steam-roller, nice and scrubber. It’s like finding out that the well-dressed middle-aged lady who makes coffee in the office works as a Cyndi-Lauperesque singer on a cruise ship during her vacation. She’s also a be-bikini-ed snake charmer at a variety club every other weekend. When she isn’t volunteering at a retirement home or feeding homeless cats.

  • Winifreida says:

    Oh yes, the “THUNK” days of Lutens are clearly over….it reminds me of the big thunk when I discovered Mitsouko back in about 1978 and was then doomed forever to make forays to the (very small) Guerlain counter in Sydney Downunder, thinking that at last every ‘fume I found was going to be amazing…anyway that’s in the past…and ‘something’ made me go online and discover perfume blogs, probably too much leisure upon retirement, and it was thunk thunk thunk as I discovered things like Criminy and ISM! The culture of perfume is clearly entering the arid zone again. But for some reason I really enjoy a blast of Bas de Soie, whereas the Vitriol is just ‘naice’….probably does smell wild and different to the average department store spritzer.