Soul by Costume National
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8.2 / 10     54 RatingsRatingsRatings
Soul is a popular perfume by Costume National for women and men and was released in 2015. The scent is spicy-woody. The longevity is above-average. It is being marketed by Beauty San.

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Fragrance Notes

Top Notes Top NotesBergamot, Cardamom, Pink pepper
Heart Notes Heart NotesGeranium, Leather accord, Oud
Base Notes Base NotesAmbergris, Vanilla bean, Patchouli

Ratings

Scent

8.2 (54 Ratings)

Longevity

8.1 (45 Ratings)

Sillage

7.4 (47 Ratings)

Bottle

7.4 (51 Ratings)
Submitted by Michael, last update on 16.03.2019
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Reviews

ColinM

516 Reviews
ColinM
ColinM
2
Meh...
This new addition to Costume National’s fragrances range represents the unnecessary confirmation that the only good Costume National scents ever made where the early couple of ones composed by Bruyère – 21 and Scent Intense. It almost seems the guys at Costume National share this feeling as well, since Soul smells basically like an unneeded rewriting of Scent Intense crossed with influences from some of those contemporary Middle East cheap brands which are quite invading the market lately – brands like Arabian Oud, Lattafa, Swiss Arabian and countless of similar ones, with their nuclear, and often sweetish spicy-smoky oud and/or leather blends. Soul is for me exactly halfway all of that, and I wonder why they hired some renowned nose like Ropion for such an uninspired, clerical copy-and-paste job. Soul definitely keeps Scent Intense’s peculiar bone structure of powerful, sort of dry and extremely synthetic amber-musk-fruity notes, and boringly crosses it with a smoky praline of vanilla and artificial, sort of medicinal-nutty oud with a dark shade of leathery patchouli and a greyish salty feel of ambergris. The result is basically “Scent Intense Oud & Patchouli” with a whiff of M7’s trademark ambery-medicinal oud.

Is it any good? Well, sort of. If you like Scent Intense, then that’s still way above this, as it smells richer, more quality and more fascinatingly complex, and also kind of more focused; if you don’t care for it, then Soul may be a slightly more peculiar than usual sort of “futuristic”, androgynous, dirty yet sort of “aseptic” take on oud and synthetic leather with an initially stomach-piercing galore of powdery-musky vanilla tinged with a nondescript candy vibe. A powerful sweetish musky candy with a drop of cheap smoky oud & patchouli, and an everlasting artificial and linear drydown... sounds familiar, eh? Nothing that probably some Middle Eastern drugstore brand isn’t already doing for ten dollars a bottle. Not abysmal, but go for Scent Intense anyway.

6-6,5/10
7.5 5.0 7.5 6.0/10
Drseid

670 Reviews
Drseid
Drseid
2
Soulless...
Soul opens with moderately sweet vanilla infused black pepper spice. Moving to the early heart the composition remains moderately sweet as cardamom joins the black pepper to support an emerging synthetic Oud accord that takes on the starring role, with traces of relatively sanitized patchouli and rough leather joining in subtle additional support. During the late dry-down the sweetness fades while remaining in modest fashion as a salty ambergris accord takes control of the composition with the sanitized patchouli remaining in support through the finish. Projection is average to slightly above average and longevity very good at about 10-11 hours on skin.

When I initially heard about Soul I really didn't know what to think. On the one hand, it is by Costume National, a brand that has produced some really great compositions previously, this one composed by my favorite nose Dominique Ropion. On the other hand, the last few Costume National releases were disappointing, and the published notes list looked uninspired. It was time to give the stuff a sniff to see if Ropion could work his magic on a brief that most likely would not have been his first choice... Unfortunately, one of the first things I noticed when Soul was applied on skin is the significant sweetness level. This sweetness comes from the vanilla in the base, but it permeates every aspect of the composition's development and not really in a good way. At least the early relatively sweet vanilla is not powdery, as that would have been the death knell early-on. Countering the unwanted sweetness is a pretty decent implementation of synthetic Oud. This stuff will not fool anyone who has smelled the real thing that it is not a synthetic concoction, but Ropion to his credit utilizes the faux Oud in a way that it blends pretty well into the spices and patchouli, never calling too much attention to itself even though it is the star for most of the composition's development. The most disappointing part of that development, however, comes during the late dry-down as salty and slightly musky ambergris takes over from the faux Oud as star, with the vanilla eschewing some of its sweetness, swapping it for a subtle dry powdery sheen late. All in all Soul does smell good, but somewhat ironically, apart from its note list being unimpressive it comes off as soulless. My guess is Ropion really didn't enjoy composing this one. The bottom line is the $150 per 100ml bottle Soul is lacking precisely that despite still smelling good, earning it a "good" 3 star out of 5 rating and a hesitant recommendation.
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