Chloe Nomade by Quentin Bisch for Chloe 2018


Kate Apted


Greetings APJ good people.

Ever have one of those moments when you suddenly become aware of falling head over heels for something, or someone, that really makes no sense? Maybe it is that weird tasting cereal that has ingredients that you usually despise, or that little weekend hideaway in the hills you keep returning to that is far from your beloved beach.

I fell in love with Chloe Nomade. It was only because I was repeatedly typing into in my Facebook perfume group as my Scent of the Day that it dawned on me how often I was wearing it. The glorious Drew bag shaped bottle gives nothing away of how much I have used. It has snuck into my top five list of most loved and is first for most worn.

My very dear friend, Karen, recommended Nomade a year ago. I eventually tried the scent on a card and found it unimpressive. I loved the bottle and the laid back advertising, but the scent underwhelmed me. I am not sure what prompted me to buy a 50ml bottle at the tail end of winter other than a Fragrantica review of it had me return for a closer smell. Freesia caught my eye and I realised I had not tried it on my skin.

Chloe Nomade by Chloe 2018

Quentin Bisch

Chloe Nomade

Having spent pretty much all summer in Nomade, I can tell you that, on me at least, three notes predominate. The journey follows the same route each time and one has to love the notes in order to appreciate the dry, tomboyish dustiness of Nomade. The opening blast is a tart Mirabelle plum. That lasts for about 45 min, which leads to the dry freesia stage of about the same. It dries down to a good two hours of a barely there musk, generic woodiness AND oakmoss. I appreciate this oakmoss is a watered down, 2019 safe version that complies with common standards of our era, but it has me wonder how bloody glorious this scent would be with 1980s oakmoss treatment! It sounds bland, but the dry down is all about the oakmoss, albeit in an office friendly manner. Let us not forget that Chloe, as a brand, won’t push boundaries THAT far!

Finally, Bisch has given us a Chloe perfume that is not a beige interpretation of a rose, a pastel scent to match the waifish, flimsy fashion Chloe gave us in the early 2000s, nor a sweet based fruchouli bomb. Instead, Nomade is exactly what the advertising promotes; a self assured, wind swept beauty with dry tones to highlight its tomboyishness. It was a brave move for Chloe to release something so decidedly girl-next-door who looks stunningly beautiful with the wind blowing her hair around. While the world still gushes over heavily made up celebrities with fake nails that render the wearer almost incapabale of everyday chores, Nomade celebrates the opposite side of that.

Chloe Nomade nomade-chloe-review

Nomade is a fruity-floral chype. A modern chype, if you will. The oakmoss lends a dry quality to the scent and the freesia gives a bitterness that balances out the tart plum, to reveal its sheer sweetness. It is a gateway chypre for the current generation who have never used their mum’s Charlie, or have not had the joy of 80s oakmoss hard hitters. It would be easy to bemoan Nonade as a try-hard chypre, but given the ethical aspirations we seek, Bisch did a magnificent job to reinterpet an equally adored, and despised, perfume ingredient.

Nomade blooms to heavenly levels when worn on a stinking hot day and the wind blows dry and fierce.

Tell me what you think of Nomade, and the idea of modern chypres. How do you feel about current oakmoss scents?

Ciao Bella et Bello,

Kate x

26 thoughts on “Chloe Nomade by Quentin Bisch for Chloe 2018

  1. I really need to try this on skin. I might actually have a sample floating around from a Sephora order but my backlog of samples is large and I get to the mainstream scents last. I love chypres (interesting since early in my perfume journey I just didn’t get them). I read a bunch of the Sephora reviews on Nomade with amusement. Lots of love but also “too masculine” from those who have apparently never experienced oakmoss.

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  2. I’ll need to revisit Nomade. I was impressed by the ad campaign and made a point of sampling while at Nordstrom. I was somewhat disappointed because it didn’t smell as I expected. However; I admit I judged based on the top notes. I didn’t get to the dry down to experience the modern oakmoss. I’ve always enjoyed oakmoss and chypres from the past.
    Thank you for reminding me not to be so quick to dismiss a fragrance!

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  3. I still haven’t tried Nomade but it’s in my plans.
    I’ve come to like modern chypres although it wasn’t easy: I was kinda snobbish as I kept comparing them to vintage creations. Now that perfumers have found the ways to imitating the oakmoss note without using the actual ingredient, like, say, Thierry Wasser who recreated Mitsouko using mastic tree and some solvent, I’ve found myself wearing New York Intense, Sublime Balkiss, gosh, even Miss Dior Originale. Things change, fake oakmoss is better than none 😉

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  4. Heya Kate,
    I really liked Nomade too. Haven’t bought a bottle yet but I think it might become a longstanding pillar fragrance for the company. It’s got that kind of appeal and not so 20tweens that I think it will sink with the decade change as so many others will.
    Maybe it’s heralding the change we will see?
    Portia xx

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I never ever felt the need to reach out for it in department stores which was obviously a mistake…plum, freesia and musks/oakmoss are all notes that I like. Now you really made me curious 🙂
    As a die-hard fan of eighties perfumes I’m in love with oakmoss and miss the real stuff a lot. It gave such depth to old perfumes and this can hardly be acchieved nowadays.

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    • Fully agreed, Neva, but there are noble attempts to try to keep traditional chypres alive. I think that needs to be recognised. And, in a way, modern perfumery has given us offerings we would not dare dream of in the 80s. Think Coromandel, Tauer’s work and the space age vacuum beauty of Oliver and Co.


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