Liam's Top 3 Frederic Malle Roses 2015


Post by Liam


The ultimate flower, a total chameleon of the fragrant spectrum. A rose’s nuances are broad and all-encompassing from woody notes, citrusy overtones, herbal impressions, and delectable fruity tinges whilst lending itself so easily to dank agarwood oriental creations, rich gourmands, and powdery scents with a focus on makeup or femininity. No wonder the Editions de Parfums lineup from Frederic Malle has several rose fragrances!

Frederic Malle Roses Daniele Barucco FlickrPhoto Stolen Flickr

Liam’s Top 3 Frederic Malle Roses 2015

Lipstick Rose Frederic Malle FragranticaPhoto Stolen Fragrantica

Lipstick Rose by Ralf Schwieger for Frederic Malle 2000

The risk of smelling like a grandmother always scared me, however Ralf Schwieger turns the smell of lipstick into a sexy medley of intricate notes that firmly plays with the lipstick impression.

Here, the waxy aspects of lipstick are fully heightened. Sweet musks with an almost edible trail form the lingering base, which twirl around a duotone heart of rose and violet. The lipstick impression here is crisp, vanilla-hued and candy-like … And despite my gender this makes me want to source some lipstick and wear it, to experience the sensation of glamour and magnetic attraction without the prominent flounce found in larger floral bouquets. This is a respectable rose fragrance, with a subtle amount of glam found through the raspberry and its rich trail. The projection is subtle on the skin, but the lingering sillage is prominent – truly like a goodbye kiss.

For me, the vintage inspiration is most captivating and I am instantly reminded of times I snuck into my grandmother’s room and scuffled around her makeup drawers with an innocuous curiosity.

Une Rose Frederic Malle FragranticaPhoto Stolen Fragrantica

Une Rose by Edouard Flechier for Frederic Malle 2003

In this fragrance, the olfactory portrait of a rose flower is extended to feature everything. Imagine the anatomy of a rose – The bright red petals and the stamen, the green leaves, stem and thorns. Each fundamental feature of the rose utilised. Une Rose opens like a green and vegetal rose; particularly a dark shard of green with heavy and dense overtones. Une Rose, meaning ‘one rose’ or ‘a rose’, is a soliflore fragrance in the least soliflore way possible. One is hit smack bang with a wet rose pulled out of the ground, roots and all. Dank with the impression of earth, truffle, and petrichor in the background, Une Rose gives rose an exciting treatment combining it with a taut backbone of strong black Perigord truffle.

Une Rose melts and projects off the skin, with the truffle base at the origin of this sensuous rose. To link the carnal smell of skin and the vegetal nature of the flower, I detect an undercurrent of vetiver and patchouli adding a woody and lush edge, with the erotic severity of animalic castoreum. Dig deeper, and a warm and spicy red wine note can be found – adding to the deepness of Une Rose.

Wear it and own it. Une Rose is an intellectually composed fragrance that causes tremors when worn and projects sternly.

Portrait of a Lady Frederic Malle FragranticaPhoto Stolen Fragrantica

Portrait of a Lady by Dominique Ropion for Frederic Malle 2010

Portrait of a Lady has excited a perfume audience in a way that seldom occurs. Here the magic happens – in which natural compliments are explored and any richness is cut to give delicacy. What happens here also is overloading done to the extreme – with Malle claiming that the Turkish rose absolute and patchouli absolute here is the most used ever in perfume history, about 50%. To add to this lavish composition, orientalism is favoured with a symphony of ingredients added – oud, incense, pepper, and clove, appealing to those who love the drama of perfume, with evident transitions of rose that intensifies and perpetually changes on the skin.

This is a spicy turkish delight, with emphasis placed on the word ‘delight’. It is viscous, and screams opulence at the highest level possible with a penetrating angular projection – it is loud but never deafening.

Surrender To Chance has samples of all three fragrances

What’s your favourite rose? How would you describe it in 3 words?
Liam x

16 thoughts on “Liam's Top 3 Frederic Malle Roses 2015

  1. I like my roses complex and a lil moody. Agent Provocateur, Knowing, RL Glamourous are a few favorites. I also thoroughly appreciate Lipstick Rose, Paris, Grand Amour and the vibrant, feminine joy they communicate.

    I’ve tried a few Malle fragrances (Lipstick Rose, Dans Tes Bras, En Passant) I enjoy them all. In the near future I aim to seek out Iris Poudre, Portrait of a Lady and L’Eau D’Hiver.


  2. hey mate,
    Rose is one of my favourite notes. Three lovely choices here. When I need a rose fix my first thoughts are Lipstick Rose, Parfum Sacre, Ballets Rouges and Mohur. There are many others in my collection but these are the staples.
    Portia xx


  3. Hi Liam,
    My all time favorite rose in three word: La Rose Jaqueminot. Thank you for these thoughtful and beautifully written reviews.
    Azar xx


  4. hi liam,
    love all 3 of these roses…planning on buying une rose for my 40th bday in april : )
    wondering if anyone has read the frederic malle book.i am considering getting it, but it is pricey, and i am not sure if it is worth it.
    thanks : )


  5. I don’t like rose soliflores or perfumes with rose as a prominent note. I try them from time to time, and indeed own samples of Lipstick Rose and POAL. And various others including Une Rose Chypre, Eau Suave, Diva, Tocade, Knowing, Parfum Sacre, Rose 31 … I wore the heck out of Paris and Paloma Picasso back in the day. But I don’t love any of them.

    The odd thing is that I love reading about rose fragrances, not wearing them. I think must be because they are so varied,and people write about them so passionately. I never miss one of Jessica’s posts on NST.

    So – thank you! This was a lovely read.


  6. What a beautiful collection of reviews, Liam! Each and every word was so beautifully placed and left me longing to experience each fragrance again. Rose is one of my favourite notes and it’s so funny that these three fragrances are all in my top 10. If I could explain my favourite rose, Nahema, in three words it would be Crimson Technicolor Lightshow.


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