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Group: Chypre fruity
I bought Mauboussin Eau de Parfum online based on recommendations and raving reviews from fellow online perfumistas I always take notice of as most of my fragrances are blind buys and this way I've discovered many beautiful olfactory creations I wouldn't have otherwise.
French jeweller Mauboussin clearly know their stuff. The stunningly cut, pyramid-shaped bottle sits on an ever so slightly curved base. The top of the pyramid houses the metallic atomiser that you can press down and spray. It's also topped with a bead of crystal. The bottle is thick-walled, heavy and luxurious and the bright orange juice contained in it is reflected through the iridescent glass giving the object an inner glow. I don't think I've ever seen a more stunning, contemporary perfume bottle before. Five stars for the original and special bottle that looks like a gem itself and complements the fragrance perfectly.
Top notes: mandarin, plum, bergamot
A dark, but soft and complex, sweet and sour plum note opens up the composition that is quite busy though never becomes overwhelming as the notes are well-balanced. The mixture of sweet and spicy patchouli and amber already escaping from the base notes and flying around the juicy and fruity cocktail that's meant to be the main player here actually transforms Mauboussin into a unique spicy fruity oriental fragrance I've never encountered this way before.
Heart notes: jasmine, rose, peach, ylang-ylang
It's hard to pinpoint the transition and the time the perfume starts showing its heart due to the com-plexity of the composition. I'd say between 15 minutes and half and hour Mauboussin has definitely become softer and more rounded as well as a smoother, creamier and a more balanced oriental. I don't detect any particular floral note listed though it's no surprise. In predominantly spicy and oriental fragrances the florals only serve as a balancing out part and are not meant to develop fully.
At this stage I would describe the fragrance as juicy and fruity, smooth and creamy from the fruits and floral notes as well as dark, ambery and resinous from the base notes having a ratio of about 50% - 50% at this point. I'm mostly picking up some moist, foody prune-note which I love and a generous dose of labdanum. Labdanum is a resin extracted from rock rose and is one of the three ingredients that constitute vegetal amber now used extensively in perfumery instead of grey amber.
Labdanum has a dark, warm, ripe, fruity, prune-like and resinous odour profile reminiscent of myrrh but without the predominantly bitter and and smoky aspects characteristic of the latter. Originally I thought there was myrrh among the ingredients however it isn't listed. The heart of Mauboussin was like a warm and sweet spicy plum compote dipped in labdanum resin that had a bittersweet edge just enough to keep it from being too sweet. It stayed put for an impressive 6 - 8 hours on my skin and had moderate sillage that would get attention but never became annoying as it blended gorgeously in with the skin.
Base notes: amber, patchouli, vanilla, benzoin, cedar
For the drydown, imagine a dark, sweet, honey-laced plum pudding and creamy custard that has a spicy, resinous and clove-like core and which still tastes light and transparent and not at all sicken-ing or cloying. This was Mauboussin until most of it faded out after about 9 hours when it finally settled into a soft, ambery vanilla with hints of spice and woods. It was now a skin scent and stayed on for another 3 hours approximately.
There's something about jewellers that makes them stand out with their fragrances commissioned for them compared to the most often run-of-the-mill, unimaginative or downright cheap and synthetic fragrances most fashion houses end up with. Having found some pretty stunning Cartier creations (Panthère, Must, Le Baiser du Dragon) with a mostly classic appeal as well as Cashmere, Wish, Madness from Swiss jeweller house Chopard that are designed for a younger but equally sophiscated crowd, Mauboussin definitely strikes a similar chord with me but actually taking it one step further by combining the best of both worlds that is quality French perfumery with a contemporary, gourmand take.
I recommend Maboussin if you like modern, sweet and spicy orientals like C'est La Fête Patchouli or a fruitier, softer version of Obsession as they both have a sweet, spicy structure built around an oriental core. In personality and complexity it also reminds me of the bold and spicy Gucci Eau de Parfum. I've already got numerous comliments using Mauboussin, it seems to appeal to all genders and ages.
Mauboussin is best worn in cold seasons or for a night out. It's a distinctive, rich, sweet and dark fragrance that's also transparent, versatile and sophisticated but ultimately young at heart and doesn't take itself too seriously. To sum up, a modern gem.
PRICE AND AVAILABILITY
Available from online perfume discounters as well as eBay and Amazon. Average prices are ranging from £21.68 / 30ml, £27.10 / 50ml and £33.88 / 100ml Eau de Parfum
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