Diptyque Do Son ~ perfume review


Do Son was released by Diptyque this year, and is their first new fragrance for women since 2003's Jardin Clos. Like Tam Dao, it was inspired by the childhood memories of Yves Coueslant, one of Diptyque's founders, who...

...grew up in Haiphong, a vast harbour in northern Indochina where his father, a lawyer in love with China, was established. His mother, hardly bearing the heat and damp monsoon weather, used to rest for hours in the fresh and quiet half-light of her sitting room. She loved the bitter sweet fragrance of tuberoses and the great department store in town where she used to buy whatever was fashionable from Paris. (via Diptyque website)

The fragrance notes are tuberose, orange tree leaves, rose, benzoin, iris, and white musk.

Do Son opens sharp and sweet, and perhaps a little heady, but settles rapidly into something surprisingly light and dewy for a tuberose-based perfume. There is a distinct touch of green, and the rose and iris diffuse the intensity of the tuberose without calling attention to themselves.

Diptyque Do Son fragrance

The result is rather like tuberose petals submerged in water. It is more fresh than sultry, and probably more suited to spring than fall. It wouldn't knock out you out on a hot summer day, and you could easily wear it to the office. I have no idea who composed Do Son, but the combination of weightless transparency and watery coolness gives it the feel of an Olivia Giacobetti scent. Whoever made it, it is a lovely fragrance, and I am putting it on my shopping list for next spring.

An aside: has anyone else noticed how many light, spring-like perfumes are being released this fall? Perhaps the whole idea of seasonal fragrance is out of fashion.

Diptyque Do Son is an Eau de Toilette, and the lasting power is average at best. It is available in 50 and 100 ml bottles; for stores, see the listing for Diptyque under Perfume Houses.

Tomorrow: Kenzo Flower Oriental

Other tuberose fragrances to consider: Frederic Malle Carnal Flower, Piguet Fracas & Serge Lutens Tubereuse Criminelle, a few more tuberose fragrances.

Note: top image is Tuberose by cbcastro at flickr; some rights reserved.

Update: Diptyque Do Son was developed by perfumer Fabrice Pellegrin, who also created Diptyque Eau de Lierre.

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  1. Anonymous says:

    Do Son is dewy, light and fresh on everyone but me! *pouts* I got heady, sultry, and, to make matters worse, aquatic. I hate my skin chemistry.

  2. Anonymous says:

    I remember trying this with you and damnit and eeks, it's another tuberose scent :(. Nobody loves me.

  3. Anonymous says:

    Hey L, Daniella Andrier loves you!

  4. Anonymous says:


    And you know, I can actually appreciate and wear Fracas…I guess I don't mind heady that much. It is that “marine” thing that is going on in Do Son, on my skin, that puts me off Do Son.

  5. Anonymous says:

    There is nothing surprising about releasing a scent right before the holiday shopping season. ;)

  6. Anonymous says:

    “Tuberose petals submerged in water” (with none of ozonic/marine connotations) is probably the best way to describe it. I, a tuberose lover, really enjoy it.

  7. Anonymous says:

    True enough, T!

  8. Anonymous says:

    V, I love tuberose & I love Diptyque, so no surprise that I'll be buying it.

  9. Anonymous says:

    Great review R! Yes I did notice a trend of summer perfumes being released in autumn too.

    About Do Don -very nice perfume and your description that V quoted above is just perfect.

    I am not getting a bottle of this – maybe next year.


  10. Anonymous says:

    Nice review, Robin. I will look for this one. I, too, have noticed here in Germany, many spring smelling scents being released and displayed. I still wear my fragrances seasonally, with the exception of occasionally wearing a light fragrance in the winter (sometimes I want to pretend it is warm outside).

  11. Anonymous says:

    I wonder if it's anything to do with global warming? :-D This October / November have been so mild in the UK, and the summer so mediocre, having seasons in perfume seems almost pointless!

  12. Anonymous says:

    Am going to purchase unsniffed, today. Thanks for reminding me! Tuberose forever!

  13. Anonymous says:

    ps – I often wear Fracas, full strength parfum, in the humid heat of summer in New York, and it somehow comforts me rather than knocking me out.

  14. Anonymous says:

    Thank you, R, you have once again started me lusting after a new scent to try ;-)

    Anything tuberose, and I'm there…hope I can get past the synthetics.

  15. Anonymous says:

    Yes, N, next year…and of course, want to smell the new FM tuberose before I buy anything!

  16. Anonymous says:

    LOL — maybe that is it, N!

  17. Anonymous says:

    Wow, I love Fracas, A, but can't take it in the heat. Hope you like Do Son if you're taking the plunge!

  18. Anonymous says:

    A, so nice to see you! Diptyque actually claims not to use synthetics. From beautyhabit: “All the Diptyque fragrances are natural, whether they are woodsy, spicy, green, floral or fruity. It is Diptyque's proudest accomplish-ment to have never used a synthetic fragrance in developing its products.”

    Not sure how that can be though…they do use musk, and it can't be natural, right?

  19. Anonymous says:

    Robin: my crop of tuberose, tuberoses?, was a bust this year. I love the freshly cut flowers or I just bring an entire pot of them into the house. I don't wear tuberose scents because the tuberose is so feminine, and the strong tuberose oil puts me into a stupor like the pauvre mere in the Diptyque copy you quoted. HA! But this may be a room spray for me…. Your words about “tuberose petals submerged in water” did it…a beautiful image.

    Also, everywhere I go I hear people wanting scents for HOLIDAYS…no doubt in tropical climes during the cold months. Maybe the “holiday market”, plus the Christmas shopping season, explains the light scents coming out in fall/winter? Today I'm wearing my heavy cloak of Ambre Sultan. K

  20. Anonymous says:

    Ack, another lovely scent relegated to room spray status, LOL! Ah well, your house will smell nice. There really isn't a tuberose for men, is there? I know there is a male version of Fracas (isn't there?) but don't even know what is in it.

    Good point about winter vacations, maybe that is it.

  21. Anonymous says:

    Very interesting, R! What a polished description there–born into a noble family: an established lawyer father and a mother, a real lady whose skin won't bear the sun or suffer getting wet. I even thought it was interesting how tuberoses were described as smelling bittersweet–I don't think I would have thought of that word myself, but maybe they are a little bitter and I just never noticed. To me, they're hypersweet but creamy and lush, my favorite note in perfume. From the sound of the note description, I picture a soft tuberose, perhaps a bit powdery, and honestly, I was intrigued until seeing “white musk”. I'd love to smell it though; it sounds fresh and lovely.

  22. Anonymous says:

    S, One of these days I need to smell a fresh cut tuberose. In the meantime, I am clueless….I recognize the note in perfumery, but that of course means nothing.

  23. Anonymous says:

    I would also describe real tuberose flowers as smelling bittersweet, much greener than the perfume version. They are heady, yes, but more medicinal than gardenias and jasmine, with a slightly darker smell. If I were to associate a color with the flower smell, it would be jade green, but for the perfume smell it would be magenta…

  24. Anonymous says:

    Next time I come across the flower I will tune in and listen–I don't remember at all as I have not sufficiently been nature girl (except I've always had a fascination with rocks). This word they chose to sell Do Son with, “bittersweet”, says “very green” or “sticky-planty” and “unsweet”, plus all the noble imagery says “polite frag”–not sure I'll run out to sniff as I want my tuberose to say “bombshell” like Tubereuse Criminelle. I'm sure there's an audience for it, though.

  25. Anonymous says:

    Are you familiar with SL Tubereuse Criminelle? I wonder if you'd say the tuberose in it is close to what you know. I love your descriptions and color correlations, and bluegardenia, your name (could be a perfume–is it?). ;-) I've smelled various tuberose oils and they sort of vary, yet they must all share the same basic bittersweet characteristic that the flower possesses.

  26. Anonymous says:

    S, Do Son is definitely not a bombshell scent — nothing like either Fracas or TC. Sounds like you need the new Carnal Flowers from Frederic Malle! I'll probably need it too :-)

  27. Anonymous says:

    R, most musks are synthetic in mainstream perfumes. Many in the know (not me, I have no experience with Diptyque) say they are not all-natural.)

    We natural perfumers use ambrette seed for a musky note, and I love it, it is intriguing, deep, warm, yes, seductive.

    Oh, and you must get yourself to a florist shop and ask them to special order a few stalks of tuberose for you! I know they carry them at the Reading Terminal market (call and ask if they're available.)

    They will perfume a room for days. There is a place in hawaii that will send you a flat of 100 minimum (.10each, but the shipping is high) blossoms via overnight air.


    Your nose will love you for it. Plus, a bonus — they will overpower the smell of fried Taylor's Pork Roll.

  28. Anonymous says:

    A, Will work on the tuberose…although having 100 of them airlifted straight to me from Hawaii is probably not in my budget for this month!

    I would not have pegged Diptqyue for an all-natural line either, but what do I know…

  29. Anonymous says:

    I would say SL TC is a baroque version of true tuberose. The opening medicinal notes are especially exaggerated, which I think is brilliant and have never seen done before. The drydown is somewhat more perfumey and complex than the flower. But I do love Criminelle! I am also anxiously awaiting FM Carnal Flower…

  30. Anonymous says:

    ps – as far as I know Blue Gardenia is a song and a movie, but not yet a perfume!

  31. Anonymous says:

    I highly recommend Paradise Flowers! Every time I've ordered from them the flowers have been exquisite and lasted long, and indeed do perfume a room for days. I'm not sure I'd want 100 stems though, it would be incredibly overpowering! As far as I know they used to sell tuberoses in bunches of 10 or 20 as well?

  32. Anonymous says:

    You guys are tempting me…

  33. Anonymous says:

    I just now tried Do Son for the first time and I absolutley love it. I don't smell anything marine in here, I just smell tuberose. This smells exactly like tuberose flowers to me. It is wonderful!!!

  34. Anonymous says:

    So glad you like Do Son! It is a great scent, and perfect for spring — which can't come soon enough :-)

  35. Anonymous says:

    When I was very small, my mother took me to a Buddhist temple. The chief monk carried a stem of what I now know to be tuberose, and he dipped it in an urn of water and sprinkled it over the heads of the children lined up in the front. Sounds Catholic, I know. This is the EXACT smell in the Do Son bottle, not one iota more or less. I don't smell the rose, the iris, or the orange leaves or anything else, just that smell I associate with that one temple visit. I don't think I can actually wear this fragrance, for one I'm not a tuberose person. For another, the zen of the fragrance would be somehow “corrupted” by real flesh and skin. I'm working with a piece of kleenex sprayed with Do Son draped over my desk lamp. This is the first fragrance I ever bought at full-size, and NOT to wear. Heh, I even broke my 4-at-a-time rule. I now have five bottles.

    I've been looking for the scent for a long long time. The first time I opened the tester it was like: Ding! Found it!

  36. Anonymous says:

    What a great story! Can you wear it on your clothes? And I wonder if Diptyque has a tuberose candle with the same scent? They often do.

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