Friday, November 11, 2016

My Favorite Autumn Scent: Parfumerie Generale L'Oiseau de Nuit

When people find out I love perfume they often inevitably ask, "What is your favorite perfume?" I hate that question and it always leaves me tongue tied. It's like asking, "Which of your three children do you love the most?" How can I possibly limit my perfume love to only one when there are so many out there to explore? But there is one fragrance that I have adored since it was first introduced in 2009, and if you really pressed me I could at least commit this much: Parfumerie Generale L'Oiseau de Nuit is my favorite autumn perfume. Probably. Almost certainly.

The very talented and fragrantly prolific Pierre Guillaume introduced this perfume to his limited edition line of fragrance but here's hoping it never goes away. There is a gourmand note in the opening, like burnt caramel or something golden and syrupy. It is slightly sweet but not the candy curdled sweetness found in so many gourmand perfumes. It is more an opulent richness with bergamot providing a golden light. The davana note adds to the boozy feel of this scent. The first hour it is truly an elixir of warmth and luxuriance and I am tipsy with delight.

Now for the really good stuff. Benzoin and labdanum are two of my most loved fragrance notes and they take center stage in L'Oiseau de Nuit. Benzoin makes this perfume feel like it has amber as an ingredient, but it's a slightly lighter more transparent amber note than the real thing. Benzoin  also adds a sweetness which doesn't feel like a full on gourmand, a unique juggling act. Ladanum is a sticky resin that also adds to the amber accord feel. At the beginning of this perfume's wear it is like a gorgeous golden elixir, slightly sweet and rich. Then the amber notes began to take over and it becomes the most oppulent cashmere blanket of scent. On the Parfumerie Generale website L'Oiseau de Nuit is termed an ambery leather perfume, but Guillaume kept the leather touch light. It adds a very slight animalic note and tones down the more gourmand aspect, but I never really sense a strong leather presence. The longer I wear it the darker the scent becomes, perhaps referencing the night bird in its name.

This is the perfect fall comfort scent for me. It evolves from its bright and showy opening to a darker denser fragrance. For all the drama of its opening it eventually becomes a fairly close to the skin scent which one could be comfortable wearing in any situation. L'Oiseau de Nuit would be equally at home as a male or female scent. If you love banzoin, labdanum, or amber this is a must try.

This beautiful collage can be yours from Imagine Studio, Etsy. Scent from my personal collection.


Undina said...

I had a very limited exposure to Parfumerie Generale (none of the stores around here cares the brand), but most of those that I've tried were rather nice and L'Oiseau de Nuit from your description sounds like a perfect autumn perfume.

Cynthia said...

Undina, They seem to have a lot of fragrances and I've only tried a handful. I am very hesitant to "over recommend" but this one really speaks to me. Thanks for reading!