Serge Lutens in the Barneys Catalog

There is a short interview with Serge Lutens in the latest catalog from Barneys. Among other things, he links Santal Blanc to the smell of fresh bread from the bakeries in Lille where he was born, and when asked what fragrance he is wearing now, he replies:

I don't often wear them but my favorites remain "Sa Majesté de Rose", "Amber Sultan" et "Clair de Musc". I constantly create new compositions and take note of their chemical reaction on my own skin.

I can only assume these are his favorites from the export collection only.

Nobody asked, but my favorites from Serge Lutens: Tubereuse Criminelle, Iris Silver Mist, Douce Amere, Santal Blanc, and Fleurs de Citronnier. There are at least 5 others that I wear occasionally. I still have not tried the new Miel de Bois, but it seems to be more popular on Basenotes than Makeupalley, so I assume it has a masculine slant.

Huge thanks to Annie for sending the article to me!

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  1. Anonymous says:

    Clair de Musc is one of my favorites too. I consider it very femine, so I'm wondering if any guys will now be checking this one out too, since it's one of SL's faves.

  2. Anonymous says:

    Morning V! Good point. I know SL does not like to categorize his fragrances as masculine or feminine, but I should think Sa Majeste de Rose would be rather hard for a man to pull off. I am waiting for a decant of Clair de Musc and will be interested to try it! Have you tried Miel de Bois, and what did you think?

  3. Anonymous says:

    I saw that article and it cheered me, because Ambre Sultan and Sa Majeste la Rose were my favorite to wear of the ones I've tried, which leads me to believe I ought to try Clair de Musc. (I love, love, love Fleurs d'Oranger, but it's simply too much to wear every day.) Miel de Bois was sort of nasty, though, in my opinion. Miguel at Aedes confessed to me he wasn't fond of it in the least, so it's not a universal winner among fragrance-obsessed men.

  4. Anonymous says:

    I think a super-masculine dandy would have a ball wearing Sa Majeste. Men used to wear rosewater back in the day, after all. Don't English men still?

  5. Anonymous says:

    Nasty, really? That is a shame, the name sounds so nice. I am looking forward to trying Clair de Musc, but as with Miel de Bois, the reviews are wildly divergent. I am not counting on loving it.

    Sa Majeste is gorgeous. I wish I owned it.

  6. Anonymous says:

    True enough! If the basenotes forum search function wasn't broken, I would check it out.

  7. Anonymous says:

    tania – – here in turkey everyone, men included, use rosewater and lemon cologne on their hands. men smell rosy in a not the least bit feminine way. don't know about their english counterparts…

  8. Anonymous says:

    Sorry for the late response; I did try Miel de Bois, I didn't care for it and I passed it along to a male friend. It seems it might work better on a man. I wish I had written down my impression, I just remember I didn't like it.

  9. Anonymous says:

    Miel de Bois smelled like a dirty baby's diaper on me. Very repulsive. It's the only Lutens I was really put off by. The rest I either like or am neutral about.

  10. Anonymous says:

    It really does seem to inspire dislike in many women. A few of the men on basenotes seem to like it, but they're not really raving about it over there either.

  11. Anonymous says:

    Wow, actually repulsive! I think I was put off by one other, it might have been the Musc Koublai Khan (sp?), but I wouldn't go so far as to call it repulsive.

  12. Anonymous says:

    I had higher expectations from Miel de Bois, maybe a more pronounced wood would have done the trick. To me it was like walking through the wood section in a hardware store while eating a Bit-O-Honey. Maybe it smells very different in colder weather – I'm not giving up on it yet but every time I wear it – that's exactly what I get!

  13. Anonymous says:

    Miel de Bois just sounds so lovely, though, doesn't it? Now we need someone else to do a wood-honey scent.

  14. Anonymous says:

    I actually loved Miel de Bois the other day at Barneys — but I only sniffed it on paper which probably doesn't count! Am waiting for a decant. (If it's as masculine as everyone says, I probably won't love it, but maybe I'll try layering it with something jasminey.) I do love honey notes – maybe the only food scent I don't dislike. There's an amazing Miel shampoo by Terax that I use as a hair and body wash because it smells so divine – intoxicating without being too sweet, and almost licorice-like.

  15. Anonymous says:

    I only tried it on skin once. It is a very unusual scent and I need to try it again, but it wasn't love at first sniff.

  16. Anonymous says:

    ps – update: i realized i hate miel de bois. in fact i hate all the SL bois scents! and i don't like to use the word hate lightly…

  17. Anonymous says:

    You are not alone, at least on the Miel de Bois. It does seem to be widely hated. I love several of the woods, but not the really sweet ones, starting with Feminite de Bois, which seems to be everyone's favorites. Ah well, there is a whole sequence of fragrances that you don't need to buy :-)

  18. Anonymous says:

    I got a sample of Serge Lutens Arabie and Douce Amere today. I'm waiting for my nose to recover from Arabie (one whiff gave me a headache, the dry down is considerably better than the first encounter, but just think, I'd have to suffer for 45 minutes to get it down to something tolerable, I'm just not cut out for the orientals) before gingerly peeling back the stopper for Douce Amere. Will report back on it tomorrow.

  19. Anonymous says:

    I love Douce Amere…will be curious to hear your impressions. Arabie sounded so unlikely to appeal to me that I've never even tried it.

  20. Anonymous says:

    Well, it is extremely interesting. I'm not exactly sure how I feel about it, but I grow to like it more and more as time wears on. The first whiff is sweet and powdery and smells like a wild flower from my childhood which I don't see anymore. When I press my nose right up to my wrists, the fragrance is too forceful and, as Emperor Joseph II to Mozart — too many notes. I was ready to dismiss it, but the day wears on and once in a while, at my desk, I would pause to take in something very different, very nice, and more than anything, impossible to place or describe in terms of something else.

    I find that I'm not constantly sniffing my wrists, like I do with The Pour Un Ete, or Truly. I like it much better when the scent wafts. This is new for me, usually when I really love something, I'm constantly sniffing my wrists until the scent wears away.

  21. Anonymous says:

    Perhaps it will grow on you, but perhaps not…many people don't like it!

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