Roxana Illuminated Perfumes Figure 5: Bois

boisIt is not exactly a state secret that I am a big fan of Los Angeles based perfumer Roxana Villa and her perfume line. She specialized in botanicals and tries to use local ingredients, including ones from her own garden and beehives at her cozy mid-century house in the hills above Malibu (where a couple of years ago Portia and I spent a lovely afternoon playing in her lab, laughing and having a complete and total blast mixing things up.) I’ve always said that there is nobody who can capture the feel of the wilds of Southern California than Roxana, and Figure 5: Bois is one of those. From her website:

Figure 5: Bois is like a weathered and warm embrace from the undergrowth of a mystic forest. The notes are warm and earthy primarily of wood with tobacco, leather and smoke. Typically masculine, although worn by both men and women.

I don’t get a whole lot of leather in this and the tobacco is just hinted at, what I get most is a delicious smoky wood that’s like a fantasy of a cabin in the hills where a cozy fire burns in the stone hearth and in the distance the Pacific glistens under the full moon.

Like most natural scents, the lasting power isn’t as long as commercial scents that contain god-knows-what to keep it going for weeks at a time. Roxana does have a brilliant solution to that though, she sells a solid version of a lot of her scents that can act as a “fixative” and making the scents last longer.

Of course, having a more fleeting scent means that you get to reapply, and in the case of Figure 5: Bois, that’s a fate I would more than look forward to.

Figure 5: Bois is available on her website in different sizes and concentrations. She offered and shipped the samples I used for this review. Image credit: her website.


Obviously I wrote this and set it up to post before the events in Charleston. I have to say that I am so saddened that this sort of thing has happened, yet again. I don’t pray, but I know, like you that the nation is keeping the victims of this senseless violence in their thoughts and and that the shooter is brought to the swiftest and most harsh judgement.

  • Roxana says:

    Tom, how I adore you and what a glorious afternoon that was, I kept that memory so well treasured. Thank you so much for writing this little piece, its so much fun to read your words and know that the fragrance is being savored.

    As far as Charleston, I am so distressed by this news. I just recently read that as the Great Year moves out of the Iron Age and into the Golden Age (2025), which is known in our culture as The Age of Aquarius, things might heat up a bit with humans operating from their lower chakras. I absolutely cannot wait for the Golden Age, although we’ll probably be savoring it in another lifetime.

  • tammy says:

    I am fortunate enough to have a solid perfume of Roxanne’s called Aurora, and I love it. Her fragrances are always so rich and luxurious. Sadly, I waited too long to get the purple honeybee locket.

    As to guns and the USA, we already have strict gun laws. Indeed, the states with the strictest gun laws have by far the most gun violence. There are 55 million gun owners in this country, including myself, and we all wish we had been in the church with those sweet people that night. The outcome would have been far different.

    The deeper question is how are we raising the type of monsters who can mow down an 87 year old woman without batting an eye? Not to mention kill 9 people over the color of their skin.

    The Swiss are armed to the teeth, but somehow their citizens manage to not go around shooting up schools and old people in churches (with one notable exception)

  • Portia says:

    One of my oft remembered moments from our time in LA! Roxana, what a sweety and how incredible was it to spend time in her lab laughing and concocting? Can’t wait to try the new one.
    As to the USA and guns, please get them to enforce stricter gun laws. These terrible events can be lessened in frequency. How many beautiful Americans must die?
    Portia xx