Vetiver Extraordinaire by Dominique Ropion for Frederic Malle 2002

Hi there Frag Family,

Do you ever read blog posts and think about the sly sexism of fragrance? We are taught through advertising images, sales people and our general community to think of certain things as Masculine or Feminine. I know this discussion goes on quite a bit but today’s fragrance is one that is sold towards the masculine side of the tracks and for many people that is right and proper. To me though it’s another way that we are manipulated to conform, which is not something I’m completely down with so I am asking all you lovely ladies to take a moment next time you are at the counter or sample site to have a go at this fragrance. With an open mind and a keen nose so you too can enjoy a fragrance that I think is worthy of your attention.

Vetiver Extraordinaire by Dominique Ropion for Frederic Malle 2002

Vetiver Extraordinaire Frederic Malle FragranticaPhoto Stolen Fragrantica

Fragrantica gives these featured accords:
Top: Bergamot, bitter orange
Heart: Pink pepper, cloves, vetiver
Base: Sandalwood, cedar, oakmoss, myrhh, musk

Well, straight off the spritz the fun, wet, citrus is so intense that I feel almost as if I have spritzed a cologne, that instant burst of feel good refreshment that orange is known throughout the aromatherapy world grabs me a whisks me to my happy place. I think the pink pepper and clove come in pretty quickly to add a zingy spicy whirl and the whole experience is very foody, but not in a bakery way. There are all foods that we eat and it comes through here for the initial 5 minute rush of fireworks before the composition is grounded by the slightly salty, grassy, wet earthy addition of vetiver. Though this aspect arrives it is never dank or dark, there is a light breeziness to Vetiver Extraordinaire, a more interesting and nuanced take than Guerlain’s Vetiver with a much longer lifespan and speaking of lifespan L’Artisan’s Coeur de Vetiver Sacre, while having a sensational story also isn’t much of a longevity monster either.

Vetiver Extraordinaire Malle Vetiver Nursery TreesForTheFuture FlickrPhoto Stolen Flickr

Vetiver Extraordinaire grabs what I feel is the essence of vetiver, an amazing plant originally from India but now grown and used all over the world for such important stuff as fighting soil erosion, cleaning polluted water of deadly metals and detergents and stabilising hills as well as as a crop. Few people talk about the saltiness of vetiver, I wonder if I am the only person who gets that particular correlation? I find something very clean seaside air in Vetiver Extraordinaire that wants to wrap me up and fly me away.

In dry down I find Vetiver Extraordinaire a very clean wood, slightly herbal. I can’t put my fingers on exactly what happens here but it remains fresh, without the many poor connotations that that has come to include in modern fragrance writing. Clean in a very nice human way, no I’m not making sense and can’t explain it any better, sorry.

Vetiver Extraordinaire Malle gangsters & mole itterbiirmalin DeviantArtPhoto Stolen DeviantArt

Vetiver Extraordinaire is both interesting and long lasting. I get more than 5 hours fragrant to my nose, longer in cool weather or the evening and a second spritz an hour or so later will add hours to that. Projection is very good for the first 30 minutes and then it comes close, by the end it is a mere whisper of fresh skin overlaying your personal fragrance. Ladies should take this fragrance and wear the freaking hell out of it, wonderful for everyone.

Further reading: What Men Should Smell Like and Perfume Shrine
Aedes de Venustas had $280/100ml
Surrender To Chance have samples starting at $7/ml

What gender boundaries do you cross already? Do you like to mix it up and play with scent image? Did you try Vetiver Extraordinaire by Frederic Malle or any other vetivers that caught your fancy?
Do leave a comment, we love to read your thoughts too,
Portia xx

8 thoughts on “Vetiver Extraordinaire by Dominique Ropion for Frederic Malle 2002

  1. Yes. I will try this in London at the end of the month. I am gonna hit the FM counter anyway. Dries and Eau de Magnolia. Need. 😉


    • WOW! I love Dries and can’t wait to try Magnolia. I should go hit the Malle counter myself but I’m not sure the budget could stand it this month.
      How lucky are you? London again.
      Well Jel.
      Have a great time.
      Portia xx


  2. I like vetiver and wouldn’t hesitate to try anything with this note. Haven’t tried this particular perfume, but I should.


    • Hi MaryK,
      I love vetiver too. Vetiver Extraordinaire is so wearable and lovely, a great take on the note.
      Portia xx


    • Fair enough, and what a beautiful love it is Nymphomaniac. I too swoon for CHANEL No 19. It is one of the best and has stood the test of time.
      Portia x


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