AMOUAGE Awesome Foursome

Guest Post by Madeleine

Hello Everyone,
This is my first Guest Post for AustralianPerfumeJunkies and I will be back regularly.

AWESOME FOURSOME: A QUARTET OF AMOUAGE

For many years, the beauty of this wondrous Amouage line eluded me, not through a deliberate choice mind you, but because I initially dismissed it as more about marketing than lovely juice (how wrong I was!) and because I was having other adventures in perfume land, it never really registered on my radar. Even an eager SA at Selfridges when I was living in London last year couldn’t tempt me by waving a scented card of Ciel – one of the line’s white florals –under my nose. I was determined to discover things that weren’t available to sniff in Sydney – Balmains, Dior’s La Collection Privée etc – that it barely registered. Thankfully, things didn’t remain the same, Amouage finally came to my nose by virtue of a happy accident. In order to round out a sample order some months ago, at the last minute, I added one of their samples. I haven’t looked back since.

Created in 1983 by the Sultan of Oman, Amouage was to revive the ancient art of Omani perfumery. The house uses the traditional materials of Middle Eastern perfumery, such as frankincense and myrrh, to create traditional Middle Eastern- style scents but with a decidedly French vibe and very luxurious feel.

But what about the reviews?

DIA POUR FEMME

Photo stolen from Fragrantica

Dia was created to be the daytime companion to one of Amouage’s most revered and popular scents, the aldehyde-laden white floral, Gold. While certainly a lot softer and gentler than her bigger sister, Dia is no less sophisticated or elegant. If Gold is all silk ball gowns, diamonds and killer heels, then Dia is all about a refined wool sheath dress, pearls and leather ballet flats.

Dia includes notes of fig, cyclamen, bergamot, tarragon, sage, violet leaves, bush peach blossoms, rose oil, orange flower, peony, orris, white musk, incense, vanilla, heliotrope, cedarwood, sandalwood and gaiac wood.
It opens with a rush of warm fig and herbs before quickly developing into a luscious heady floral bouquet of peony and orange and then settles into soft gauzy woods. Dia’s great beauty is its duality: it manages to be both cool and warm, both chic and comforting at the same time. My only complaint is that it lasts barely two hours on me. Longer lasting and a full bottle would indeed grace my perfume collection.
For more reviews of Dia Pour Femme please see I Smell Therefore I Am and Suzanne’s Perfume Journal

MEMOIR WOMAN

Photo stolen from Fragrantica

The lovechild of YSL Opium and Serge Lutens Arabie is what I first thought upon sniffing Memoir Woman. The perfume is rich and heavy in feel with such a cacophony of notes that it took me a few subsequent wearings to get my head around it.

Memoir Woman features notes of absinth, cardamom, mandarin orange, pink pepper, wormwood, clove, incense, pepper, jasmine, rose, white flowers, musk, french labdanum, oak moss, styrax and leather.
Memoir is classified as chypre but has a decidedly oriental feel due to its heady mix of spices. It opens with a medicinal blast of absinth and pink pepper before the other spices slowly come to the fore, folding over and over in a billowing wave. The richness of spices segues into a warm panorama of rose, frankincense and white flowers.
For me, Memoir Woman is the epitome of Amouage’s heritage and markedly opulent vibe. Wearing this takes me one on of the strongest olfactory journeys ever: I’m wandering round a Middle-Eastern market at twilight all swathed in rich fabrics, kohl rimmed and mysterious.
For more reviews of Memoir Woman please see Now Smell This and Olfactoria’s Travels

HONOUR WOMAN

Photo stolen from Fragrantica

Being a white floral lover, I was pretty sure I’d love Honour Woman and be whacking down the credit card to buy one of those pretty white bottles quick smart.

 It features notes of pepper, rhubarb, coriander, jasmine, tuberose, gardenia, lily of the valley, carnation, vetiver, frankincense, amber, opoponax and leather.
On first whiff, I was a little worried this was going to be an upscale version of a department store fruity floral. Honour Woman opens with a tart rhubarb note but thankfully the presence of pepper and coriander prevent it from becoming too mainstream in vibe. As the fragrance develops, the rhubarb is joined by a creamy soft gardenia note to create a very warm composition before soft incense and amber join the fray. Don’t get me wrong, Honour Woman is well executed and sophisticated like the other Amouages, but I’ve yet to fall completely under its spell.
 For more reviews of Honour Woman please see Olfactoria’s Travels and The Candy Perfume Boy

JUBILATION XXV WOMAN

Photo stolen from Fragrantica

That lucky sample I acquired all those months ago and my overall love of the line is the divine Jubilation 25, created in 2007 to celebrate Amouage’s 25thanniversary. Not only is it aptly named for that occasion, but because it literally had me jumping for joy at first sniff.

 Jubilation 25 features notes of tarragon, lemon, ylang ylang, rock rose, frankincense, davana, labdanum ciste, patchouli, amber, vetiver, musk and, myrrh.
It is such an impressive chypre produced at a time when pretty much everything in this genre is dead and buried. The beauty of the scent is that it manages to combine all the classic elements of chypres past, paying homage to their memories in a thoroughly modern way. It opens with a beautiful rich accord of tarragon, lemon and ylang ylang before segueing to a symphonic rose note that’s achingly bright. The herbal rose goodness wafts and whispers before the composition moves seamlessly to a classic woody and herbal chypre drydown.
Like all good chypres, Jubilation 25 made me sit a little straighter, pull my shoulders back and hold my head higher. Even when sampling in my PJs over a coffee or after a long day’s work over a glass of wine, I am suddenly terribly chic and sophisticated. Jubilation 25 makes me feel like the woman I aspire to be.
For more reviews of Jubilation 25 please see Now Smell This and Perfume Shrine

Thank you so much for reading, I hope you’ve enjoyed my thoughts on four of the Amouage line.

What Amouage scents have you tried? Have your experiences been similar or different to mine? I’d love to read what your thoughts are.
M XOX

18 comments on “AMOUAGE Awesome Foursome

  1. saffyishere says:

    hello Madeline,your first review was wonderful and informative.I have tried Dia,Honour woman and Epic woman….all winners,but to my wallet this line says NO.However,i keep reading lovely things regarding the newest,Beloved and my heart says YES and RIGHT NOW.

    • Madeleine says:

      Hi saffyishere,

      Many thanks for your kind words! Yes, Amouage is definitely up there in terms of prices. I too am very very keen to try Beloved, it sounds gorgeous!!

      M x

  2. YAY!! Madeleine is in the house! Awesome job. Congratulations Princess,
    Portia xx

  3. masha7 says:

    I really love Amouage- high quality, thoughtful perfumes with good backstories, I could happily wear any of them. My favorites, though, are Lyric Woman and Honour Woman. Feminine but complicated, easy to wear, yet so elegant! Bravo to Christopher Chong!

    • Madeleine says:

      Hi Masha,

      They are! It was difficult to just review 4. I so agree as regards ‘feminine but complicated, easy to wear, yeat so elegant!’ It is very heartening to have a line like this around. Bravo indeed! M

  4. TimeaZsofia says:

    Dear Madeline! Your review is just fantastic, I really love it. Go further!

  5. Lucy says:

    Hello Madeleine – i am interested in trying some of these – the way you describe the different scents really helps me to understand more about perfume – perhaps i will start to enjoy it more rather than thinking its ‘something I should really like’ all the best as the guest reviewer! LouLou

  6. Suzy Q says:

    I had the same early impressions of the Amouage line as you had. Recently I revisited my sample vials and–holy smokes–I was blown away. Memoir Woman, Ubar, Lyric, Gold, Dia–I like them all. But Ubar and Memoir are my favorites. The quality of the ingredients raises these perfumes to a high level. Last week 5 ml of Memoir came my way as the result of a swap. Wow! You are so right about all the notes–it’s hard to tell what’s what, especially when you spray. I love it, but it’s too big to wear in the summer.

    • Madeleine says:

      Hi Suzy Q,

      Yes, they are pretty mind blowing. Ubar was another one I was going to review, I just think it is another gorgeous chypre, but I felt I covered that ground with Jubilation 25. Yes, Memoir is more of a winter scent to my mind as well, it would just be a little cloying in the heat. Enjoy sampling it! M x

  7. Undina says:

    Welcome, Madeline! Great start!

    Amouage was my very first niche perfume house that I smelled by choice and since then (not that long – just a couple of years ago) it became one of my most favorite brands.

    I absolutely love Ubar (and own both a FB of the current formulation and a decant of the original one). I like Gold and have a decant of it. I tried most of the rest (pre-2012 launch). My favorites are Dia, Lyric, Epic, Opus I and Opus III. Honour Woman isn’t for me since I do not like tuberose. I had a really tiny dab sample of Memoir Woman so I need to test it more. The same goes for Jubilation 25 but I’ve got a bigger sample already so I plan to test it as well soon.

    I know that Amouage perfumes are expensive but I think they offer a really great quality for that price. So I think there will be at least a couple more Amouage bottles in my collection eventually.

    • Madeleine says:

      Thanks Undina! Yes, Amouage is one of my favourite lines too, given the number of them I like. The only other line where I like more than one or two is Frederic Malle.

      They are exceptional quality, and yes, when you compare them to say, Parfums MDCI, Malles etc, they are not that expensive. Ubar is divine, how do you find the two different versions?

  8. Dionne says:

    Welcome to blogging, Madeleine! Great first post. 🙂

    I still haven’t smelled any of the Amouages except the Opus IV that Dee sent. It’s not that I’m avoiding them, per se, but….. OK, maybe I am avoiding them just a titsch. I’m worried I’ll fall head over heels for the entire line and bankrupt myself. Someday I’ll get there, really.

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