Hors La Monde Shiloh ~ perfume review

Hors La Monde Shiloh fragrance

Hors Là Monde recently launched their second fragrance, Shiloh, after winning a protracted legal battle with actress Angelina Jolie over the rights to the name. Shiloh has any number of meanings, but only one of them matters to Jolie, apparently. I don't know if the legal costs were outrageous, but it is hard to imagine a more fortuitous gift publicity-wise: Shiloh (the perfume) got way more attention in the mainstream press (and on the celebrity gossip blogs) than your average niche fragrance launch could ever hope to achieve.

The Shiloh fragrance was developed by Michel Roudnitska, and is described as...

...the treasure brought home after years of traveling. Mysterious, bewitching and refined, Shiloh is the result of a fusion of delicate scents, precious woods, a hint of Rose from Esphahan, and a touch of patchouli oil...

Additional notes include lemon, bergamot, herbs, rose, Virginia cedar, sandalwood, incense, oakmoss, musk, patchouli and vanilla.

Shiloh opens on a sweet and tart verbena-like mixture of lemon and greenery, floating over dark woods and what smells to my nose like maybe just a bit more than "a touch" of patchouli. It warms slowly on the skin, and hints of the lemony opening linger on to brighten the floral notes in the heart, highlighted by a sheer, rosewater-ish rose. The base is beautifully earthy but polished smooth, and none of the notes really stand out to me other than dark woods and patchouli. It has a subtly spiced finish and just the right hint of sweetness.

The first time I wore Shiloh, it was a hot, sticky summer day, and since some of Michel Roudnitska's fragrances are rather heavy affairs (Delrae Amoureuse!), I took the precaution of dabbing on a little drop rather than spraying with abandon. I needn't have bothered. The founder of Hors Là Monde, Symine Salimpour, reportedly told Roudnitska that she wanted Shiloh to "present the idea of fragility and strength" (via The Washington Post) and the finished product comes remarkably close to that ideal. It has a satisfying depth but doesn't feel at all overbearing, even in the heat. Still, it is probably more of a fall-winter scent than a summer one.

I didn't fall in love with Shiloh on that first try, but by the third outing, I was hooked. It has a dusky, quietly seductive quality that I find enormously attractive. Highly recommended, and could easily be worn by either sex.

Hors Là Monde Shiloh is an Eau de Parfum, and the lasting power is good. It is available in 50 ml for $128. For buying information, see the listing for Hors Là Monde under Perfume Houses.

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  1. Anonymous says:

    It grew on me with a couple of wearings too. Love the spices there. Would be a perfect Indian Summer scent,

  2. Anonymous says:

    Sigh. A sample is on its way. It was the word 'dusky' that did it.

  3. Anonymous says:

    It must be a sleeper sort of scent — have yet to see anyone fall in love w/ it at first sniff…

  4. Anonymous says:

    I hope you'll like it! It is very different than other MR scents, to my nose anyway. But someone on MUA that tried it thought it was like Bois de Paradis minus the berries & cinnamon, so perhaps I am wrong.

  5. Anonymous says:

    All I *get* in Paradis is the berries and cinnamon! This sounds lovely, though…

  6. Anonymous says:

    This sounds lovely! I'm on a M Roudnitska kick right now, wearing BdP (deep and abiding love!) and having sniffed and been very interested by Ellie at the weekend. Is it just me or does that bottle look like a square Delrae bottle? Anyway, a better price point than Ellie and I look forward to trying it.

  7. Anonymous says:

    Well, me too, which is probably why I can't envision the similarity, and of course I can't find my darned BdP sample at the moment…

  8. Anonymous says:

    WAY better price point than Ellie, yes, although I do like Ellie too. Can't decide on the bottles — all squarish bottles kind of look the same, don't they?

  9. Anonymous says:

    Don't know what's up with the fight over the name, Shiloh will always be THAT BEAGLE PUPPY to me. :) OK, no, just kidding. It's a major Civil War battle with crushing loss on each side. Thomas Harris also referenced it in his “Silence of the Lamb”, and it's never been a romantic name for me. On the theme of books & movies, KK was OK in “Bend It', but her goofy buckteeth and single-expression ruined P&P for me.

  10. Anonymous says:

    I think of the Civil War, personally — never saw the dog movie.

    P&P just wasn't P&P-ish to me. Didn't like the set decorations, didn't like the script, didn't like whatshisface as Darcy, didn't like the all-wrong relationship between Mr & Mrs Benett, didn't like anything at all. Thought KK did Elizabeth all wrong, but blame it on the script & direction. Bah.

  11. Anonymous says:

    Well then you must check out the A&E Pride&Prejudice Mini-series, with the MANLY Colin Firth as Mr. Darcy. The tone is spot-on, and the actress who plays Lizzie “gets” her modern spirit.


    I did not care either for the recent “Becoming Jane”, a constructed romance based on Austen's life and why she wrote her heroines the way she did. Another strange preference: I did not care at all for Gwyneth's “Emma”, but I LOVED Alicia's Cher in “Clueless”. And then there's “Sense & Sensibility” with Emma and Kate which nobody cared for, apparently. No, I don't read Austen much, really. :)

  12. Anonymous says:

    Huh? This smelled mainstream and completely uninteresting on me.

    Maybe I got the other Shiloh scent…


  13. Anonymous says:

    Oh, I'm a Janeite. Own both the Firth/Ehle P&P, and the earlier, still good but not quite so good BBC version with actors I've never heard of & whose names I've forgotten (In fact, own the box set of earlier Austen miniseries, which covers all of them, even Northanger Abbey). Also own the KK version of P&P, even though it makes me angry. Refuse to even consider seeing Becoming Jane, which looks absurd. Loved Gwyneth's Emma though, and the Emma Thompson S&S, even though ET is too old for the part and Hugh Grant is ALL wrong for his part. There!

  14. Anonymous says:

    Errm, heh, have you tried out the Random Namer in your link? My heavens! Nothing guarantees a beating in school like the Random Namer: Orwynn Trowbridge, Blake Joiner, Montayne Lachlan. So *this* is what the writers of Dynasty used to construct their characters!

  15. Anonymous says:

    Shiloh is a bizarre name choice to me, especially with the Civil War connotations, so I won't be sniffing it. Family history on both Union and Confederate sides….

  16. Anonymous says:

    I believe SS chose it because it means “gift” in Hebrew.

  17. Anonymous says:

    But ET did do the brilliant screenplay for S&S, she was involved in real life with the villian she pined for, the chemistry all-round was exceptional, and then there was the perfect Alan Rickman, who to my mind can do no wrong. . .

  18. Anonymous says:

    Alan Rickman was perfect!

  19. Anonymous says:

    I finally tried this. I love it!!! I'm ordering a bottle!!!

  20. Anonymous says:

    Isn't it nice? I'd like a bottle myself.

  21. Anonymous says:

    I Am hooked on Shiloh . It has great silage , ad creates a warm rosy, musky aura. Very beautiful. A perfet scenbt for cool weather. Very niche , I love it . By the way, my wearing Shiloh has inspired 5 women to buy it !

  22. Anonymous says:

    Agree it's lovely — and I'm *still* wanting a bottle. Spent way too much $$ this year though.

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