Féminité du bois

(2009)
Féminité du bois by Serge Lutens
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7.5 / 10     305 RatingsRatingsRatings
Féminité du bois is a popular perfume by Serge Lutens for women and was released in 2009. The scent is woody-spicy. It is still in production.

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Fragrance Notes

Beeswax, Clove, Honey, Cardamom, Musk, Orange blossom, Peach, Plum, Rose, Vanilla, Violet, Ylang-ylang, Cedar, Cinnamon

Ratings

Scent

7.5 (305 Ratings)

Longevity

7.3 (207 Ratings)

Sillage

6.2 (189 Ratings)

Bottle

7.5 (190 Ratings)
Submitted by Kankuro, last update on 07.05.2017

Interesting Facts

This fragrance is a re-release of the 1992 launched Féminité du Bois by Shiseido.

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Reviews

Sillage 5.0/10
Longevity 7.5/10
Scent 7.0/10
Helpful Review    3 Awards
More Shiseido than Serge
Serge Lutens FEMINITE DU BOIS is striking in its subtlety. I suppose that makes sense since it was originally launched by Shiseido. The composition seems very simple to me: basically powdered cedar and violet with just a touch of oriental spice. I was even reminded a bit of my memory of Creed LOVE IN BLACK by the combination of cedar and violet. There is also some overlap with CERRUTI 1881. I like it.

Perhaps this version has been tamed in reformulation, but I'm not sure that I understand why precisely this linear, straightforwardly pleasant perfume is so famous. Yes, it's nice. But iconic? Really?
1 Replies
jtd
Very helpful Review    5 Awards
linear evolution
Evolution over time is highly valued in perfumery. Headnotes, heartnotes, basenotes. “Linear” is often derogatory. A linear fragrance or one that does not demonstrate substantial change over time is considered either lacking or a failure. The traditional categories, fougere, chypre, oriental (could we please get a better word for this?) are all defined by their changes over time. A good, proper perfume must demonstrate development yet consistency from start to finish.

FdB is a definitively linear fragrance. It demonstrates strengths that a typical ‘evolving’ perfume generally does not have. The experience of FdB is that it all comes at you at once. It’s not an onslaught. It’s just that all the elements seem to have a similar intensity so that you can smell the fruit, the wood, the violet-floral in equal measure. All the set pieces are in place and the development is that of a fugue, where you notice different elements at different times. It’s a great fragrance for contemplation in this sense. The ongoing juxtaposition of the pieces makes you reconsider the perfume again and again as you wear it. And like a fugue, the composition, the geometry of the component parts, remains the same, but the whole piece gets shifted up or down over time so that perspective becomes the variable, not time.

To me, the fear of this approach is that you could wind up with a rather cold, impassive perfume. You might contemplate perspective, but it’s not exactly a thrill-ride. But FdB avoids these problems by having a beautiful harmonic intensity. It just keeps coming around the corner at you. I appreciate why people use the term radiant to describe FdB.

FdB is purportedly one of the perfumes made with a very high percentage of iso-E Super. It is neither the perfume with the highest amount, nor the first to use it in such high percentage. But it was an early adopter of the molecules use in fine fragrance and created a new style if not genre. FdB and other ‘new linears’ of its era seem not so much a change in style as a categorical shift in approach. The notion of how a perfume works is fundamentally different here than in, say, the category-defining Mitsouko with its archetypal top, middle and base.

There certainly are bad linear fragrances. But then again there are equally bad perfumes that demonstrate an ugly evolution over time. FdB reminds me that ‘linear’ alone doesn’t connote ‘bad’, it’s just a more recent form in the tradition of classical perfumery.
1 Replies
Scent 9.0/10
Very helpful Review    9 Awards
Autumn leaves
There is something decadent in this perfume. And when i say decadent i dont refer to a roman-like orgy, or a triple chocolate cake... i dont mean self-indulgent, i am not doing any moral judgement. I refer to the decadence in a more biological sense. The decay of nature, the fallen leaves, the over-ripe frit, and autumn, the season of decay by excelence.

Now, my nose is not trained enough so i can notice every note listed, roughly we have a woody violet fragance, that is also fruity; but please, dont think in this inoffensive fruity florals so popular today. It is fruity a la Lutens. You know what i mean.

The first 20 minutes the clove is more noticeable, balmy and cool, and it transforms into a fragant cedar and stays more woody. Also there is a metamorphosis in the sweeter notes... the waxy overripe peach and plum mingles with the violet... and in the drydown is mostly violet. But not a candied, prim violet. There is nothing playful or , dont get me wrong, young, in Feminite de Bois, is a grown up, mysterious, gentle fragance. Seductive and day-dreamy, a bit melancholic. It makes me think in the Enya of Watermark.

Sillage is very good for not being a loud fragance at all, longevity is excelent. It is a violet fragance a man could wear, if he wouldnt mind having a perfume called "Feminité"... i am certainly wearing it, but, i am way too confident for not being scared of even openly florals... and FdB is not one.

At the Serge Lutens shop in Paris i was told "Bois et Fruits" and "Bois de Violette" are flankers of "Feminité du Bois", and are worthy a smell.
3 Replies

Statements

Hermesh 7 months ago
Femininity applies here perhaps not primarily to the wood (as the title suggests), but rather to the (initially very noticeable) spices.
Bottle 7.0
Sillage 6.0
Longevity 6.0
Scent 7.0

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