Portrait of a Lady by Editions de Parfums Frédéric Malle
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Top 83 in Women's Perfume
8.2 / 10715 Ratings
Portrait of a Lady is a popular perfume by Editions de Parfums Frédéric Malle for women and was released in 2010. The scent is floral-spicy. Projection and longevity are above-average. It is being marketed by Estēe Lauder Companies. Pronunciation
Scent goes well with Oud Wood (Eau de Parfum)
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Fragrance Notes

Top Notes Top NotesCloveClove RaspberryRaspberry RoseRose BlackcurrantBlackcurrant CinnamonCinnamon
Heart Notes Heart NotesPatchouliPatchouli SandalwoodSandalwood FrankincenseFrankincense
Base Notes Base NotesAmberAmber BenzoinBenzoin MuskMusk

Ratings

Scent

8.2715 Ratings

Longevity

8.8598 Ratings

Sillage

8.4586 Ratings

Bottle

7.9532 Ratings

Value for money

6.6173 Ratings
Submitted by Fran, last update on 23.05.2022.
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Reviews

WildGardener

303 Reviews
WildGardener
WildGardener
   2  
Strong Woman
A version of the rose-violet bouquet, which first appeared a century ago and attained its apogee with Sophia Grojsman’s Paris (1983).
POAL replaced her musk & aroma chemicals with spiced patchouli & amber, giving it a chypre base: where Paris is a pretty punkette in a pink fluffy jumper, POAL is her mother in a tailored suit.

This is not a loud perfume as such, but you can hardy fail to notice when you’re wearing it. This is mainly due to the desiccated violet - iris - raspberry, which overtops the liquid rose and gives a dry impression throughout.

Personally, I find POAL is too much to wear;
it’s the type of thing that’d Wear You given half the chance.
2 Replies
9.5
Scent
10
Longevity
10
Sillage
8
Bottle
8
Pricing
IonutFeidi

18 Reviews
IonutFeidi
IonutFeidi
Helpful Review    3  
A seductive `portrait'
After few years into niche perfumery and having smelled this on several occasions I finally decided to pull the trigger on it. In the past it didn't really catch my interest. Smelled okay, jammy rose but that was basically everything I was perceiving. Few weeks ago I got back to it and wore a sample in the cold weather. It felt like I was smelling a different fragrance. The raspberry was very prominent and delightful, reminded me a little bit of Jubilation 25 Man opening. The incence in it is so beautiful and well blended that you can barely tell it apart from the other notes. It gives the formulation that lovely smokiness that elevates the jammy Rose. The trail this fragrance leaves is to die for. Nonetheless an amazing fragrance by Dominique Ropion. Longevity and projection above avarage 12+ hours.
DalilaB

26 Reviews
DalilaB
DalilaB
   5  
What a lady!
This was the first niche fragrance I bought back when I was still chasing the « one » or the « signature perfume » .
I met one of my best friends on that journey for which I am forever grateful. I told him I am looking for a rose scent! He came with lots of samples all about rose and kept his favourite portrait of a lady for last. I sprayed it on a peace of paper and turned my nose up! This is weird! I don’t know if I like it or not, it is different from the usual rose I go for. It’s got a lot of character, it’s a rose with a little masculine vibe. I learnt after that, that it was the patchouli I was smelling. The more I sprayed it the more I loved it!
It felt like an autumn rose, simply special and elusive. Whenever I wear it I am transported to that beautiful Scottish autumn day sipping hot beverages with my best friend Misan. Cheers
9
Scent
9
Longevity
9
Sillage
10
Bottle
8
Pricing
Lilye
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Lilye
Lilye
Helpful Review    20  
Actually
Actually, I am not so the fan of rose perfumes. Hidden in there somewhere like, the mixture makes it, but usually I always give samples of rose perfumes to my mom. Actually.

Actually, the rose is still my favorite flower, I even wear it as a tattoo. Weird, I know, but the scent of the fresh rose is just a different one for me than in most perfumes. Actually.

And actually I had ordered the bottling for my mom, I like to do that sometimes, like L'eau À la Rose or Crystal Flowers , two of her favorites. Actually.

You can probably already guess how this review ends.

Before I give the bottlings to my mom, I always treat myself to a sample sniff. Portrait of a Lady so, my first associations with it are ladies from the time Baroque, sitting still to be painted. Portrait of a Lady just.
And so I sprayed me the good piece on.

Actually, now would come the part where I think to myself, "Yes, typical rose perfume, just right for Mom".
But it didn't come.

Portrait of a Lady is for me just not the normal classic rose fragrance, but much more. An adult rose that was broken off and once beautifully bathed in incense and breaded with pepper, clove and patchouli. Adult and mysterious, floral but with a certain punch.

Actually, a rose scent nonetheless.
Actually.

2 Replies
9.5
Scent
10
Longevity
8
Sillage
10
Bottle
10
Pricing
SinLaurent
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SinLaurent
SinLaurent
Helpful Review    20  
Rebirth in the wrong age
There are stories about some people remembering their past lives. I don't believe it. I know I don't. Whereas, know is a strong word, but I intend to know what I'm talking about when I talk about perfumes and my life.

First of all, you may not get along with this lady. I may look very different from her, but we are a spitting image on the inside. If you're planning on hitting the clubs with us and dancing the night away with "Alien" until 9am, then we're sorry to disappoint you. We're also not going to be the kind of women that guys talk about after the weekend about how the night was with us and how black opium felt on our skin. We're also not the kind of women who recklessly explore the world alone with a backpack and occasionally spray up the courage with "Black Afghano."

Why we're so boring?

Because we have seen all this before.

Portrait of a Lady can already count off all her fingers on one hand to show how many decades she has behind her. She wears her pearl necklace around her neck, inherited from her grandmother, and drinks the same black tea every morning at exactly 9 o'clock. With the same light pastry. One may hand her new confectionery, new delicacies from the world's best pastry shop, but she will refuse. Because she has already found what she likes (some call her "dull", "boring" and "stuffy" for this reason). For her birthday she gets her favorite roses from her husband, he can not make a mistake, because the lady has always had the same taste. Something about her seems as if she's been wintering together with her clothes in the closet and just crawled out five minutes ago. Still quickly patting herself over her clothes, something about it reminds me of chalk dust.... Yes, wet chalk.

She doesn't wear herself out or rage. She stays but does not force herself on, she leaves a trace but only certain she will be remembered. That one calls her prude, is equal to her. She has seen the world through different eyes, and this time she knows that she has no reason to hurry to discover herself. She is already at the end, even though it may only be the beginning.
4 Replies
10
Scent
10
Longevity
10
Sillage
10
Bottle
10
Pricing
FilipMurray

15 Reviews
FilipMurray
FilipMurray
   3  
Masterpiece!
Everything about France and Paris is magical... just like Frederic Malle.

This fragrance is all about luxury, magic and quality.

Rose, incense, raspberry and patchouli. A little bit of musk. Cinnamon and cloves are very quiet in the the background. I believe that the scent is creamy from sandalwood.
Raspberry makes it unique compared to other perfumes with rose note... it's a note that knocked me off my feet.

Do not blind buy this! It's a unisex fragrance, but I can understand why someone consider it as a feminine.

Performance is just amazing. Longevity and sillage are insane with 6 sprays. Over 8 hours with a strong aura. Skin scent for another 12 hours. Beast mode for fall and winter.

I will definitely always have this gem in my collection, it is just perfect.

it's a 10+, Mr. Dominique - thank you!
9
Scent
8
Longevity
9
Sillage
8
Bottle
8
Pricing
MrLawman

38 Reviews
MrLawman
MrLawman
   1  
A portrait that can be understood in many ways
Portrait of a Lady is an miracle from a technical perspective.

Every museum visitor knows that the challenge with each portrait is to recall the meaning of the painter. We face the same challenge with POAL. Sometimes it smells dominant earhty patchoul or rosy- musky and sometimes smells church like incense or animalic.

A true creation of art that would be the first acquisition of a fragrance museum.
10
Scent
10
Longevity
10
Sillage
10
Bottle
6
Pricing
PMRP12

36 Reviews
PMRP12
PMRP12
Helpful Review    3  
Spicy rose incense.
Fantastic fresh rose opening—dewy, green, and spicy—that becomes increasingly woody, ambery, musky, and smoky over time. Perfectly unisex on paper, yet different skin will emphasize various facets (mine amps up the spice and incense, where my wife’s focuses on the rose and fruit). Pure and clean, with none of the overly jammy, saccharine, or bitter notes common to many rose fragrances. A balanced, but drastically sweeping shift from light and fresh (rose and spice) to dark and sultry (resins and wood). I haven’t truly smelled anything quite like this, but recall very loose similarities with Déclaration D’Un Soir—just less sweet and with more natural rose and development. Wife and I are splitting a bottle. A deftly composed and dynamic rose and incense masterpiece. Must try!
9.5
Scent
4
Longevity
4
Sillage
8
Bottle
4
Pricing
MissD

1 Review
MissD
MissD
   1  
Lovely scent, but doesn´t last
This could possible be THE perfume that I have been searching for. Bought a 50 ml bottle and love the opening, but the dry down is very weak and moldy patchouli. Please don´t get me wrong, I absolutely love patchouli , but in this dry down it becomes old and bitter and I cannot detect any rose. I get hardly any sillage and the lasting power is poor. I sprayed it on two hours ago (three sprays) and it´s completely gone. First I thought I might have gotten a bad batch (bought it from a store), but then I got a few samples and all were the same. No projection, no lasting power and bitter dry down. I just wish the fragrance would last, its my absolute favorite perfume in the entire world - but the dry down is just so bad I cannot justify buying another bottle. Might need to give Tiziana Terenzis Porpora a try and see if that has a nice projection and dry down. So sad, but oh well.. my search continues.
1 Reply
6
Scent
9
Longevity
8
Sillage
8
Bottle
6
Pricing
Ptsau

65 Reviews
Ptsau
Ptsau
   1  
Nice but not my cup of tea!
I tried a 2ml sample for 2 full wears. Lucky I did that because I only ‘like’ it, not ‘love’ it. After it dries down, I think it just smells like my Oud Satin Mood (I have a full bottle of it) but in a very mature and feminine way. I don’t like feminine and mature scents but I have to admit it has great performance and quality. Just not my thing and it costs more than most of Frederick Malle perfumes. I love Frederick Malle and its Musc Ravageur and Carnal Flower (I have a 100ml bottles of them). I think they do worth my money. They have more unique scents, smell younger and more unisex.
Show all reviews 21

Statements

InbnkInbnk 5 months ago
10
Scent
9
Longevity
9
Sillage
8
Bottle
Classy rose with powerful smoky. Elegant gorgious masterpiece. POAL is one of the most favorite in my little collection. Worth it.
BertolucciKBertolucciK 6 months ago
9
Scent
8
Longevity
8
Sillage
9
Bottle
Spicy and jammy sweet rose in the opening. Then, a deep ripe rose, slightly smoky, with an earthy patchouli. Ambery and woodsy in the base.
Simo975gSimo975g 7 months ago
10
Scent
10
Longevity
10
Sillage
8
Bottle
The opulence of the dramatic rose is offset by the darkness of patchouli, spices and incense. A gothic masterpiece.
BejanoirBejanoir 7 months ago
10
Scent
9
Longevity
10
Sillage
10
Bottle
It took me years to understand, and then it hit me! It's sooo beautiful. When you get there, you'll experience it's magic.
T3lk4T3lk4 10 months ago
Very powerful scent, strong and imposing, never smelt anything quite like it.
MariaSMariaS 1 year ago
8.5
Scent
A dirty smokey animalic rose...It's a portrait of a lady so powerful, respected and imposing who doesn't need any man in her life.
BoBoChampBoBoChamp 2 years ago
8
Scent
9
Longevity
8
Sillage
Initially spicy-fruity, this slightly smoky, spicy-earthy floral fragrance settles to a dusty resinous-woody base. 100% Unisex!
SharleezeSharleeze 2 years ago
This is an absolute masterpiece created by a genius. It think it will be Chanel N°5 of the 21st century.
PioPio 3 years ago
8.5
Scent
8
Longevity
8
Sillage
8
Bottle
Lovely scent. Can't go wrong with this one.

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