“ Brand: Yves Rocher / Type: Fragrance / Concentration: Eau de Parfum / Gender: for women „
I love my Yves Rocher products as people have probably already guessed by now, and in particular I adore their range of fragrances. The reason for me is that YR use plant based materials in their products and this definitely comes through as the aromas they emit are 'natural' smelling and not artificial.
I have been a fan of the Secrets d'Essences range for some time now and have bottles (full size and sample sized) of all of the collection except for this - 'Vanille Noire' - until recently that is.
Price, size, packaging & availability ~
This comes in two sizes of 50 ml and 30 ml and though is an Eau de Parfum it comes in spray form.
As usual this is available from www.yves-rocher, by phoning 0870 049 2222, in store or Ebay.
This is available from YR costing £40 for the larger sized 50 ml, and at the moment (Aprill 11') the 30 ml costs £15.60. I wasn't prepared to pay that much for something I hadn't sampled yet but managed to get the 30 ml brand new from Ebay at £6 inclusive of P&P so if interested do look around.
Vanille Noire comes housed in a statuesque upright standing bottle. There is nothing overtly fancy about the design as it is quite basic being cylindrical that veers out towards the neck slightly and topped off with a wide elegant looking lid. The colouring of the glass starts off as a lighter brown which as it works up to the neck becomes deeper and is finished off with a dark chocolate coloured lid. As I said the design is quite plain but the little touches like the difference in colours really gives this a glamorous and very stylish appearance.
The fragrance itself~
This as you may have guessed is a vanilla based fragrance that uses different types of vanilla beans to create something a little more deeper than the *average* vanilla fragrance.
It is made up of 3 different types of vanilla which are:
*Vanilla bourbon absolute
*Tahitian Vanilla Absolute
*Ugandan Vanilla Absolute
To be quite honest I never really realised there were so many different types of vanilla as it's not something I've given much thought to before, but was eager to see what it would be like to actually wear and would it be too overpowering?
I have been of a fan of this range of fragrances for some time since discovering Rose Absolute. Since then I have made a point of trying (and buying) the rest of the Secrets d'Essences parfums as I have been extremely impressed with each one I have sampled. Up to press I have not been disappointed by this range but I wasn't prepared to pay even £15.60 for something that I might not actually be overly keen on so when I found it on Ebay at a fraction of the cost I snapped a bottle up.
The 30 ml is identical to the 50 ml except for it is obviously smaller but operates in the same way; to access the spray you simply remove the large flat lid where the nozzle is housed and proceed to spray (not exactly rocket science).
I spritzed my wrist area a few times to initially test this out as I just had a feeling it would be too strong and didn't want to over do it. I was wrong. Very wrong in fact. What I was met with was a beautiful mixture of vanilla starting with a hit of sweetness thanks to the Tahitian Vanilla. Once the fragrance began to settle the scent became deeper and spicier and this was down to the Ugandan Vanilla. Although the Vanilla bourbon is apparently supposed to give off 'leathery notes' I couldn't really notice these at all so can't comment on them though the other 2 vanilla notes used here were easily recognisable.
On applying this early on in the day (well, around 11am) I found that Vanille Noire was still very noticeable up to 5 hours later, and even though I only applied it once during that first time of using it I was complemented twice on it by mums whilst waiting at the school gates at 3.30pm. I was very pleased that it certainly has staying power as Yves Rocher's downfall with fragrances is that they can be strong initially but fade very rapidly - this I'm pleased to report isn't one of those and a few spritzes seems to suffice for a decent period of hours without the need to top up.
Would I recommend this?~
This is a very lovely parfum but if you are not a fan of vanilla then this is obviously no good for you. I happen to adore anything vanilla, though can find it to be a little bit sickly sweet in large quantities which was my initial worry before trying this. What I do like about it is it isn't just run of the mill as in particular the Ugandan Vanilla gives it a deeper and darker twist which leaves a strong woody scent whilst at the same time not being *too* overpowering.
This is an elegant and classic fragrance that I can't see being aimed at the younger market, perhaps ladies in their 30's upwards would appreciate more (I love it and I'm 35)? This does have a sweetness to it but I think it's more of suited to wearing for evenings rather than daytime plus it's a very warm aroma so is more suited to colder weather so not really suitable for Spring/Summer.
This really surprised me and proved that not all vanilla fragrances are the same and can't be classed in the same generic catagory as this goes to prove. This is a lovely warm fragrance that I am very pleased with but don't think I would pay £40 for it despite it being one of Yves Rocher's 'premium' collections.
I would be prepared to buy this again from Ebay without a doubt or if on offer on their website but not at full price.
*Also to point out this small 30 ml size is ideal for keeping in my bag as it's small and the glass is very thick and sturdy.
The other Secrets d'Essences range include:
Also available is a plethora of matching toiletries.
Not always a wise buying choice decider when it comes to fragrances but my initail attarction for this product was because of the bottle, especially as a 30ml bottle set me back £22.99. First off I must say that if you do not like the smell of vanilla then this is not the perfume for you as it combines a number of different vanilla essences in the key notes of the fragrance and while it is not overly sickly sweet as some cheaper scents can be it is still not for those who are not keen on vanilla in their perfume.
It does boast an attractive bottle, and certainly a lot more attractive than other Yves Rocher products that I have seen on the shelves. The colour of the bottle slowly gets darker as it gravitates towards the top from a very pale brown through some golden autumnal shades to a rich dark chocolate colour, combined with the tapered bottle which gets slightt more slender towards the bottom and a nice smooth design it is an attractive design topped off with a rounded top.
In order to off set some of the inherent sweetness of the vanilla cedarwood is used to act as a balancing agent and it does help prevent this product from being too sickly sweet. I find it to be a rather refreshing sweet scent which is rather pleasant. It is not an overly dressy scent so can be worn as a day time scent and it does last quite a long time when it is applied although it does struggle to cope with a whole day without needing a top up.
Overall this is worth giving a try however I'm not sure it warrants the £20 plus price tag.
I like Yves Rocher Perfumes and like how they smell and they are on offer quite often as well, which is great.
You can buy this range online, or we used to get a catalogue through every now and again. When we were in Belgium there is Yves Rocher shops dotted all over the place. Pretty popular over there I would say.
I like the look of this bottle. It looks simple but it looks quite expensive as well. It is a brown colour but it goes from a darker brown and gets lighter when it goes down to the bottle of the bottle. The writing is in gold writing and although it is quite small writing it looks nice and against the brown it stands out more than what you think.
After looking online for the price of this as i've had my current bottle for quite a while I see that this is available in 50ml, and apparently the normal retail price of this is £40. I've never seen it for sale at that price, and although it is currently on offer for £20, I only paid £12 for my bottle. I know this is a brand name, but I never think of it as a brand in the same way as a designer brand but the price seems to reflect that this is a big designer brand.
So how is this scent described? On the website it says "This creation is based on the three most attractive qualities of vanilla, which unveil a treasure trove of nuances and subtleties on your skin: the sensual, leathery notes of Vanilla Bourbon Absolute, sweet and floral Tahitian Vanilla Absolute and Ugandan Vanilla Absolute with its spicy, woody character." All sounds nice.
This is pretty sweet and a kind of Musky scent to it. This is mostly vanilla, which I would have expected from this anyway. The Woody note in here breaks this up from being too Sweet and that bit floral. There isn't much else to say about this scent, but it is surprisingly light and not too sickly.
This Perfume lasts a good lenght of time. Although the initial scent wears off about after an hour which is the stronger part, this settles to a warm sweet scent which lingers for hours after.
I would recommend this scent if you like your Perfumes sweet with a dash of musk and a warm kind of scent.
The reason I bought this particular perfume was based upon the fact that a friend had raved about how good it was and also the fact that it was quite heavily discounted and a 30ml bottle cost me under £15 so I thought that I had got a bargain, however after using it for the past week I have decided that it is a rather average perfume and although I liked the vanilla esscence that it has it lacks anything really original and as a scent it failed to really grab my attention.
The bottle is quite attractive, nice clean lines in the design of the bottle which has a graded colour scheme moving from a very light brown up to a dark chocolate colour as you reach the top of the bottle and the rounded top.
It is quite a sweet scent, then again I guess I would expect that to be the case as it contains vanilla however you can also sense some cedarwood in it which is meant to act as a counter balance to the sweetness of the vanilla but for me this did not really seem to work to any great effect. The problem is that there is a lack of strength to the vanilla , it was a sort of medium sweet smell to it and while it is not an unpleasant smell it is a little bland overall and this was a little disappointing. I think that if you are too heavy handed when applying this then you run the risk of smelling rather cheap and tacky, used in moderation it is not bad but for me it will not result in a repeat purchase.
Overall I will only give this two stars as even at the discounted price it is a scent that I would only very caustiously recommend.
~ INTRODUCTION ~
In 2010 Yves Rocher introduces the fifth addition to its Secrets d'Essence range which I own three of in a form of a miniature Voile d'Ambre (2005), Rose Absolue (2006), Iris Noir (2007) so I was glad to receive a sample of Vanille Noire while shopping in an Yves Rocher outlet recently.
~ THE PACKAGING ~
Just like its predecessors, the fragrance is contained in a simple-looking, gradually shaded cylindri-cal bottle that slightly widens at the top. The colour varies from light brown to dark chocolate remi-niscent of vanilla essence.The cap is a round disk-shaped plastic that matches the minimalistic but rounded and classic 'apothecary' look. The outer packaging is a plain white one in line with the rest of the line.
~ THE FRAGRANCE ~
Top notes: mandarin orange
Vanille Noire starts out fresh and light with accompanied by a subtle veil of woodiness that adds some structure to the top notes but it isn't dominant and stays in the background. The accord is surprisingly soft and refreshing while at the same time having an oriental vibe to it. Overall, I'd describe the opening as soft and woody with a little bit of zesty feeling going on that complements it nicely.
Heart notes: mimosa, cedarwood
About 20 minutes later, the fragrance turns mellower and more powdery without becoming heavy or dense. It's light and soft now and is accentuated with a transparent and warm cedarwood note that's quickly becoming the main theme here. There's actually very little spiciness going on which surprised me given the fragrance's name and the heavy presence of vanilla.
I appreciate how cedar is used to offset the sweetness of vanilla, maybe a bit too much actually! I understand however how cloying and oversweet vanilla could turn out to be and entirely ruin a sophisticated fragrance and why it should be used with a light hand. The vanilla seeping through from the base notes wasn't at all cloying or sticky; it was light, moderately sweet as well as linear I'm afraid as in it didn't show its many facets I get in real vanilla essences when they are used in perfumery.
To sum up, the sillage which projected well for about 4 hours and would be picked up by others composed of a transparent, casual but alluring, somewhat sweet and powdery vanillary and dominantly cedarwoody accord that was simple but intriguing nevertheless.
Base notes: Bourbon vanilla, Tahitian vanilla, Ugandan vanilla extracts
While I enjoyed the niceness of cedarwood and the way it played with and toned down the vanilla, it didn't stop my craving for a lovely, rich, dark and sumptuous vanilla note these notes suggested. Yves Rocher's Vanilla Noire was moderately sweet, natural, lightly spiced and reminiscent of my Bourbon vanilla essence I bought in Réunion Island, together with a zing of some darker, spicy toffee aroma which may have come from the other extracts.
Vanille Noire didn't have any of the sugary sweet, cheap, empty or fake-smelling baking vanilla note sometimes found in cheap shower gels or food products. On the other hand, it lacked depth and complexity for me, as if the perfumer were too precious about their vanilla essences and didn't put enough of them in Vanilla Noire so that others can appreciate it too.
Despite its lightness, Vanille Noire stayed put all day so at least 8 - 9 hours and blended in well with the skin nicely, after all, I love orientals as they suit my skin best. I consider it a nice achievement considering how light and sheer the actual composition is, this is always a sign of great, quality raw materials.
~ CONCLUSION ~
Vanilla is a theme in perfumery that's been done countless of times since perfumery began. All aspects of the vanilla bean, let it be creamy, dark, fruity, floral, leathery, smoky or spicy, you name it, it's been done on its own or built in with other accords. There are only a few mass-produced varieties of vanilla, the second most expensive natural raw material in the world after Mysore sandalwood.
The Bourbon variety of vanilla from Madagascar, Comoros and Reunion Island is renowned for its creamy aspect with a hay-like overtone. Tahitian vanilla is mainly fruity and floral, Ugandan vanilla is spicy and woody and Mexican beans are considered to be the smoothest, richest and spiciest of all.
I feel let down by all the hype and mouth-watering descriptions surrounding this scent that is surprisingly so not smelling of that rich, complex, woody and leathery black vanilla its name suggests. I'm only giving it three starts because of the natural ingredients used; otherwise I only would have given two. For me the dominance of cedarwood did't quite meet my expectations.
However, I can imagine Vanille Noire being offered as a gift or worn by many who like affordable, natural and not overly sweet-smelling, versatile, subtle, modern oriental woody vanilla fragrances that will get noticed and possibly complimented on.
~ PRICE AND AVAILABILITY ~
In general Yves Rocher isn't too expensive a brand considering they're using predominantly natural ingredients in their products, however their more upmarket Secrets d'Essences fragrances can be pricey.
Yves Rocher currently has a launch offer of 40% off on Vanille Noire at http://www.yves-rocher.co.uk/ and in Yves Rocher outlets. The 30ml Eau de Parfum costs a reasonable £14.50 or £20.90 for the 50ml bottle.
Thanks for reading.
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