Patchouli 24 by Le Labo

Hi there Posse. Recently I was reminiscing with a perfume buddy about Patchouli 24 because they were wafting it. I had plowed through a decant in the early years of my perfumemista life. My memories are so good, dark, mysterious, expensive smelling journeys and adventures conjured by the dozen. Though I’d not bought a bottle it was one of those fragrances that I often thought about fondly. It regularly comes up on the FB pages as peoples SOTD, and a couple of my friends wear it beautifully, which keeps it fresh in my mind. So I decided to revisit this dark beauty and bought a large decant at Surrender To Chance.

Ann accidentally layered some Le Labo earlier this year with very pleasing results.

Patchouli 24 by Le Labo 2006

Patchouli 24 by Le Labo

Parfumo gives these featured accords:
Top: Patchouli
Heart: Birch, Styrax
Base: Vanilla

Woo Hoo! The decant has arrived. I’m diving in with four hefty blasts to my chest. SO EXCITED to have Patchouli 24 again. Can’t wait to

Dark, resinous, head shop patchouli, BarBQ smoke and bacon crackling, some soft green herbaceousness like basil or coriander seeds, birch and musks. The first sniff is all of this and some other, really strange scent part that is attacking me almost like a perfumed buzz saw to the head. O M G!

GAH! I can’t lie. On me this smells like Satan’s arsehole next day after a night on the piss and a very hot curry. WHAT HAPPENED! Patchouli 24 used to smell freaking amazing on me. WAH WAH WAH!

I went and bathed. It’s mostly gone, except the bits that were awful, yes, they are still pumping away. Not hugely but enough to drive me a little bit crazy.

LAYERING: Jessica Simpson Fancy Nights. I figured the patchouli rich, vanilla sweetness would pare down the awful. It has, to the extent that I can live and breath another day. Thank you Jessica, with all my heart.

OK, just so you know that sample was 100% fine. It’s my smell or chemistry that has stopped working with Patchouli 24. I tried a mates bottle on me and exactly the same reaction. Sad face.

Sorry, that was a rubbish review.

Have you ever revisited something you thought you’d love but OMG nope? Like, ALL THE NOPEs.
Portia xx


P.S. I may have exaggerated this noxious perfume event for shits and gigs but only very slightly.

  • SpringPansy says:

    Hi Portia, I’ve had this happen to me as well. But I like the weirdness of LL Patchouli 24, despite often not liking styrax/patchouli. You might like Cartier La Treizieme Heure. A classier, smoother version. “La Treizieme Heure XIII is the final fragrance of the collection – a dangerous and incredibly seductive moment! It incorporates notes of leather, mate, birch, bergamot, patchouli and vanilla.”

    • Portia says:

      Hey SpringPansy,
      I do love La Treizieme Heure XIII. It’s amazing. I also love patchouli and styrax as separate notes. There’s something else in the Le Labo mix that attacked my nose, not quite sure what.
      Portia xx

  • Pam says:

    Loved the review! You made my day. Sometimes it’s better to just remember as it was.

  • Musette says:

    LOLOLOL!!!! That was actually one of the funniest reviews I’ve ever read! We’ve all had those, Portia – mine… mine was also a LeLabo – my beloved Aldehyde 44. Sample was perfection personified. Next thing… oh… this pissypisspants note…. and once lodged in my olfactory memory, I couldn’t get it out! I thought it was me – or that sample – but every bottle/sample I tried had the same effect. It was BRUTAL.


  • SamanthaL says:

    LOL!! I just can’t wear Patchouli 24..I’ve tried but it’s just too much. The Le Labo that I love is Vanille 44 and I scored a bottle years ago on Ebay that was somewhat reasonable but I won’t pay full price for it..lovely but not worth it, not when I have so many amazing vanillas already. I used to absolutely adore The Unicorn Spell…the green bean/violet weirdness was super enjoyable but now it just grates on my nerves!

    • Portia says:

      Hi there SamanthaL,
      That Unicorn Spell was such a huge hype beast, I remember everyone going batshit crazy for it. I’m pretty sure I never got my nose on it but can’t remember why.
      Portia xx

  • SonomaVelvet says:

    Oh my Portia, I got a great good chuckle reading that. So good. I love hearing about reactions and relationships so much, love or hate or great story, always enjoyable.
    I certainly have had perfumes change on me both ways, gone from no way to hubba hubba and also a few experiences the other way. I think the most disappointing one recently was MoonBloom. Over the years since it came out I savoured 2 decants and loved them and plotted and saved and finally pulled the trigger and bought a bottle. It must have been at least 3 years or maybe even 4 since I had last sampled it before I bought it but when I tore off the packaging and opened the box in the car outside of the post office and sprayed away and waited for bliss…. I ended up with Wha???
    I don’t hate it, it’s certainly not like ‘Satan’s arsehole next day after a night on the piss and a very hot curry’ giggle. It’s just sort of flat and meh for me now. I remember it making me swoon, but it’s not the scent that I remember in my head. I keep trying once and a while but, nope.

    • Portia says:

      OH NO SV! That is a big bummer. Moon Bloom is lovely. I wonder if it’s you or the perfume that’s changed? Also, maybe it was suffering transport trauma, maybe give it some time to resettle?
      Portia xx

  • Jessica M says:

    I’ve never found a Le Labo that I love…but my mother wears Iris and it smells great on her!

    I recently revisited Alexander McQueen’s MyQueen, which I remembered loving when I sniffed it in Sephora before it was discontinued. WRONG. It was nothing like my memory, not at all. Oh well!

    • Portia says:

      Hey JessicaM,
      So cool that your Mum wears Iris.
      MyQueen is a very strange beauty. Smelling it on its own, as apposed to with the melange of fragrance in a Sephora is a completely different barrel of fish.
      Portia xx

  • March says:

    I’ve never really found “my” Le Labo (don’t take my perfumista card away) although Santal is probably closest. I dunno, they just don’t do that magical thing on me. I’ve been reorganizing my perfumes (aren’t we ALWAYS?! lol) and I spritzed on some KenzoAmour. Yeesh. One of us has changed.

    • Portia says:

      Hey March,
      Yeah, I think if they weren’t so aspiration ally priced we’d probably give them more leeway. For that kind of money I really want perfection and to be yearning for it.
      I do love their Rose 31 and Perfume Posse’s very own Thomas Pease had a hand in the notes list for the LA Exclusive, so I’m partial to that one too.

      Rearranging the perfumes is one of the great joys of the hobby. Bringing new ones forward, packing others away. LOVE IT!
      Portia xx

  • Teresa says:

    My most remembered NOPE was Caron’s Yatagan. From the notes and rave reviews I read, I thought I would love it. On me it smelled like, as one reviewer described it, salty pickled cucumbers with some dead animal thrown in. I can’t remember disliking a scent so intensely. My first thought was, Must unload immediately.

  • Cinnamon says:

    Really like this one. Got excited and put it on. No go. Too warm and humid. It needs cooler, dryer weather. It’s just too leathery at the moment — too animalic.

  • Melanie says:

    Hey Portia, i have a few decants of this one. The initial spray can be pretty rough (smacks you in the face) and i need to feel really brave to wear it. I do find though it has something that keeps drawing me back in for another spray.
    Something i used to love ages ago was Lolita Lempicka – tried it a while ago and couldn’t see why i would like it at all.
    You know i sometimes have the same experience with wine – where i will drink something and love it – rave about it then drink it again and go – what was all the fuss about?

    • Portia says:

      Ah, interesting Melanie,
      yes, smack in the face is a perfect description.
      OH NO! That must be a serious bummer. Lolita Lempicka EdP is one of my long time stable of loves. I’d be devo.
      Wine! So many parallels. We drink one red around here a lot. The Wirra Wirra Church Block. It’s Jin’s favourite and we alll buy him cases of it for birthdays and Xmas because he seriously needs nothing else. It would be a real downer if he one day started to not love it.
      Portia xx

  • cookie queen says:

    I am not a Le Labo expert, nor owner, but I tell you one thing, those perfumes have changed. I tried three I know in Munich recently, and the over enthusiastic SA gave me samples (and a load of shampoo and conditioner too). It is not necessarily all on you, they are not what they once were. Double check that with a LL fan please. I don’t know about something actually going bad on me, but Malle’s Iris Poudre? I sometimes love it and will wear no other, and other times I think it is so awful I have to scrub it off. xxx

    • Portia says:

      AHHHH! Val, you may have hit the nail on the head. It’s nearly 10 years since I was sniffing this in the USA.
      Thanks, that makes perfect sense.
      Portia xx

  • Amy says:

    I was going to say never to this extent, because I know you would never exaggerate! But I have had some solid likes, even loves, go south on me. One is Carner Barcelona Cuirs. I used to love it and now, eek. No thank you. Saved the partial bottle I have to try again another time, but it may find a new home sometime soon.

    • Portia says:

      Isn’t it a bummer Amy?
      Yeah, if you loved it enough to buy a bottle then give it some more goes definitely.
      Portia x