L’Occitane Immortelle de Corse ~ fragrance review

L'Occitane Immortelle de Corse

On paper (literally), L’Occitane's new Immortelle de Corse* fragrance smells an awful lot like real, almost “pure,” immortelle. As I sniffed a blotter spritzed with Immortelle de Corse, I thought: “Nice…simple immortelle,” but when I put Immortelle de Corse on my skin, it smelled completely different, much more interesting and complex.

Immortelle de Corse includes notes of rose, black tea, benzoin, iris, musk and (natural) immortelle. Immortelle de Corse starts off with the scents of maple syrup, honey and black tea leaves (the ‘tea’ is very fresh and floral in character, and it lasts and lasts); there’s also a hay-dried straw aroma that intensifies and becomes a tad musty (pleasantly musty). In mid-development, Immortelle de Corse is “glazed” with a wonderful burnt brown sugar (almost molasses) note. In the extreme dry-down, Immortelle de Corse smells of benzoin ‘ashes’ on buttered toast.

Immortelle de Corse is my favorite perfume from L’Occitane’s Voyage en Méditerranée fragrance collection; it’s unusual, but “pleasant” too. If that sounds like faint praise, it isn’t — I sniffed Immortelle de Corse for the first time on Friday and a full bottle was in my possession by Monday.

L’Occitane Immortelle de Corse ($68 for 75 ml Eau de Parfum) is unisex; it has good lasting power and mild sillage.

* Corsican immortelle (Helichrysum). 

Note: top image [altered] via Wikimedia Commons.

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  1. FragrantWitch says:

    Burnt brown sugar and benzoin ashes? Black tea? Hello, Lo’Occitane, here I come. Thanks for the heads ip, Kevin!

    • Kevin says:

      FragrantW: hope you like it.

  2. BChant says:

    That sounds wonderful. I will need to pay closer attention to this line. From my experience their masculines and unisex perfumes are generally better than the feminines, which tend to be cloying or thin. The Shea line they offer has a wonderful powdery scent, which I wish they would bottle!

    • Kevin says:

      Bchant: the shea hand creams do smell nice.

  3. datura5750 says:

    I had the same experience, and also ended up with a full bottle purchase….way to go L’Occitane!

    • Kevin says:

      Datura: yes, a “hit” (finally…this this is my first full bottle of L’Occitane fragrance)

  4. odonata9 says:

    Hmm, this may be worth a trip to the mall at lunch to sample! Sounds interesting.

    • odonata9 says:

      Just tried it, although today’s unseasonable warm temps made it probably the wrong time to sample. It’s sweet all right, but much more complex than a strip would lead you to, and I’m liking it much more now that I’ve washed my hands once – not as overwhelming. Probably perfect in cool weather. Liked the jasmine and myrtle ones too. And I can’t believe I had never tried their green tea – they have a nice small bottle for $19!

      • Kevin says:

        Odonata: maybe this will end up in a smaller travel size/rollerball too. Not sure.

  5. RuthW says:

    Thanks for the review Kevin, sounds lovely! How would you compare this to AG Sables? I already have a large bottle and wonder if this is worth seeking out – how many immortelle fragrances does a girl need?

    • Kevin says:

      Ruth: I’m a big Sables fan too…but don’t have a bottle at present. The immortelle is present in both of course, but L’Occitane is more foody and has more “phases”…so — different.

  6. Emily says:

    This sounds like it’s worth checking out, but is it as toothachingly sweet as maple syrup, honey, brown-sugar glaze, and molasses would suggest? Or (as I’d gather from the rest of the review) is the “burnt” aspect of the sugary stuff more dominant?

    • Kevin says:

      Emily: the benzoin and especially the TEA save it from pure confection territory.

  7. Lexy says:

    I also think this is my favourite perfume from the line, cuddly vanilla (I do get vanilla with this one) with the familiar sweet burning immortelle. Very cosy and comforting, but not lighthearted and not too girlie. This, on top of their almond shower oil will do the trick for autumn!

    • Kevin says:

      Lexy: this does seem a good layering scent, perhaps with some strong woods/incense

      • Lexy says:

        I bought it yesterday and layered perfectly with my Laura Mercier Creme Brulee body souffle! The burning caramel of the creme brulee along with the burning quality of the immortelle have been as compatible as soul mates! Thank you Kevin!

  8. trigger hippie says:

    Same effect for me, spritzed at 10.30am Saturday – owned a bottle at 4pm Saturday.

    Nothing but compliments since, works very well on this guy.

  9. Merlin says:

    I wish they did smaller bottles!

    • Bonbori says:

      Yikes, I just saw that — it’s big, huh?

      • Merlin says:

        I haven’t yet tried this one but I do like their Eau de Baux. And I can definitely see myself liking this too – but a 75ml is a BIG commitment! (Both come in 75mls)

        • Merlin says:

          Mind you, the dollar price is what a small perfume would usually cost anyway. Here, the 75ml will probably cost more like $106 – which is why I haven’t bought the eau de Baux…

          • Kevin says:

            Merlin: that is a lot, but what I said was: “it smells better than so many similarly priced perfumes…why not?” But I’ve had a dry year for purchases.

          • Merlin says:

            Kevin – no need to justify purchases to me – I just keep spending money on unecessary smaller things and then cant afford the bigger ones! And I have bought in that price range before – and not always wisely!

        • Marjorie Rose says:

          I can’t say how many times I’ve *almost* bought Eau des Baux. It will happen some day, I expect! This one does sound nice, too.

          And I don’t have an immortelle fragrance yet. *blinks big blue eyes in an innocent way*

  10. KRL says:

    Kevin – how would you compare this to SL’s JdP, which to my nose is very immortelle-centric. Do you think this would work for women?

    • Kevin says:

      KRL: I like this better than the SL…and a woman could wear this easily.

  11. Alyssa says:

    Oooh. Good for them! Must sniff.

  12. Bonbori says:

    Yum. What else is good at L’Occitane?

    • odonata9 says:

      I really like the Eau de Baux – it’s in the for men section, but would be great on either. If I could get the hubby to wear scent, this is what it would be.

    • Joe says:

      I’m a man and don’t (or didn’t a few years back when I sampled) like their men’s scents so much. I do like the Green Tea and the Mimosa scent. Labdanum of Seville was’t bad, if that’s still in production. I actually liked the Pivoine Flora. Another favorite, L’Eau d’Iparie (a sweetish myrrh & incense), has been discontinued, I think.

    • Bonbori says:

      Thanks — I’ll look for these.

  13. MelissaJane says:

    Kevin, I bought this on impulse one day and put it up for swap when I brought it home. A few days later, I tried it again and immediately removed it from my swaplist! It turns into a lovely honey for me, very tenacious and long lasting. The NYC store only had a couple of bottles. When L’occitane says “Limited”, they really mean it!

    • Kevin says:

      Melissa: weird…this was stacked high here in Seattle!

  14. Bee says:

    oh, this was on my “to test eventually” list, thanks to you Kevin and to all above commenters it has now moved up to the “to test asap” category, nice having things to to forward to!

    • Bee says:

      ops to look forward to…

  15. Morgan says:

    I love this one too! I agree with the review, I almost bought it a few days after trying it because I enjoyed it so much. It would make an ideal signature perfume, because its lovely scent would permeate into all your clothes and jackets. But for me changing scents all the time and showering infrequently (lol) the extreme tenacity (took 2 days to come off me) is a concern. But maybe something I can learn to manage

  16. SmokeyToes says:

    I love honey and black tea notes in fragrances, I’ll have to try this one. I used to wear their honeysuckle/green tea perfume oil but it’s long discontinued. Mild sillage is a plus as I work around scent sensitive folks.

  17. sunsetsong says:

    Intrigued and will give this a spray next time I am in town. I like the Neroli in this Voyages range which is an oriental. To the back of the perfume shelf I will go….

  18. Joe says:

    Doggone it. I debated going to L’Occitane last night to get a free small tube of hand cream (yesterday was the last day of the offer), but I felt lazy and I couldn’t think of anything there that I was dying to smell and the mini-cream didn’t seem worth the walk. I’d have gone if I had heard about this before.

    Sounds worth a try. Immortelle is something I enjoy, but it can be tricky and turn cloying on me. I’m eager to try it after your review; I like the way you describe the progression.

    I also need to re-test the Mimosa, which I liked very much last time I sampled it in-store. Did you ever try that one, Kevin? I do wish L’Occitane would do more scents in those little 20ml bottles that a few of their scents come in — or even 30ml or 50ml sizes. I’d own more of them.

    • Kevin says:

      Joe: for some reason the Mimosa is never out in my L’Occitane…and I love the scent of mimosa.

  19. debbie says:

    Please excuse my ignorance but what exactly is Immortelle? I have a couple of perfumes that have it in the listed notes but I have no idea what it is. Flower? Resin? Wood?

    • Joe says:

      It’s a flower sometimes listed as Everlasting Flower or helichrysum (click link at the end of the article for further info). It tends to have a slightly maple-syrup scent (in perfume… no idea what the flower itself is like).

      • debbie says:

        Thank you- i used to have everlasting daisy, growing at a previous house, but it didnt have a fragrance, so it must be something else.

  20. March says:

    Oh, this sounds fabulous, and to think it’s at L’Occitane as opposed to some obscure boutique. I love immortelle. Must sniff.

  21. Robin says:

    I was not at all excited about this since I don’t even love immortelle, but this really is the best thing L’Occitane has done in recent memory. Very impressed — this is a perfect winter comfort scent.

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