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Some thoughts on fig leaf

Some thoughts on fig leaf 10 years ago
There is no ugly fragrance note, only poorly made perfumes. Especially with the note fig leaf, I always find that perfumes of that kind really either attract or annoy me. It is all a matter of the context that fig leaf is presented in.

Fig leaf is a very distinct note, extremely green and fresh, and with a strange resemblance to coconut. Often it stands for mediterranean life style since the fig tree grows in southern Europe. The idea is to sit under a roof of those green leaves that shelter you from the sun and provide a subtle freshness.

It is not everybodys darling. Accordingly, there are not many fig leaf perfumes around, but I would like to recommend testing a distinct fig leaf fragrance to anybody. Like it or not, it is remarkable and worth knowing. I would like to share my experience with the fig leaf perfumes that I have come across so far, and I would like to ask you to contribute yours.

Let's start with the „real“ fig leaf perfumes, which I do not like that much:

"Philosykos" by Diptyque
This one is maybe the most popular of that kind. As already the name indicates, this is very straightforward fig leaf. For me, it lacks some contrast. It is simply green, fresh, and a little bit tart. It also lacks elegance, and it can get on my nerves.

"Premier Figuier" by L'Artisan Parfumeur
This is the no. 2 of the straightforward fig leaf fragrances, and it seems also quite popular. It is more discreet than Philosykos. It is softer, less tart, less sportive, and I would say, there is some beauty in it. Still, it is too pure for me, so I'd think about layering. There is also an Extreme version around which I do not know.

"Higo" by CanCarlos
This is fig leaf on speed!
CanCarlos is niche and with Higo, they show the courageousness that only niche brands can afford by leading the fresh character of the fig leaf into the extreme. They combine the fig leaf with very fresh and strong citrusy notes. It is an energy booster for any hot midsummer day.

"Macchia Mediterranea" by Monotherme
Straightforward fig leaf fragrance in the style of Philosykos and Premier Figuier. The good news: Macchia Mediterranea is inexpensive, so you should give it a thought if you do not want to spend the usual price for a rather special perfume that you might not want to wear on a regular basis.

Now, the combined fig leaf fragrances - personally, I think that fig leaf fragrances tend to be bland when focussed on that note, but fig leaf can be gorgeous if set up with the right contrasting note(s):

"Paul Smith London for Men"
My standard office scent several years ago. Discontinued. According to the fragrance notes known to us, there is violet leaf in it, not fig leaf. Yet, I get the impression of fig leaf. It is presented in a very urban style that abandons all impressions of green leafs or meditarrenean countrysides. I get a lot of coconut. It is neither green nor natural, indeed, it is a bit artificial and synthetic. But it is a great fragrance that embodies the discreetness of an urban office scent and the uniqueness of a seldomly used note.

"Salvatore Ferragamo pour Homme"
This is the best of all! It is my idea of an elegant, masculine fig leaf perfume. The elegance is achieved by combining the fig leaf with a darker, equally distinct note – vetiver! The pyramid contains a lot more, but it is this combination that Salatore Ferragamo is built upon. Sadly, it was discontinued and any leftover stock is hard to get.

"Private Line - Richard"
Limited edition perfume for the perfume shop Beauty Affair in Düsseldorf / Germany. Richard is the christian name of the shop owner, and it comes from Micallef. This brand always stands for high quality, and they seem to know that fig leaf needs something else in company. Richard is less robust and fresher than Salvatore Ferragamo. I hesitate to call it a fig leaf / vetiver combo. Instead, the fig leaf is embedded in a melange of different notes that are not easy to recognize. Great perfume for the warmer seasons!

"Marc Jacobs Men"
OK, this is widely available, and I have tested it today. It is not straightforward fig leaf freshness – there are some darker notes in it, especially towards the base – that at least partly bring out the elegance of the fig leaf. Marc Jacobs for Men lacks longevity. It starts with lots of sillage and then fades away within two hours. So, it is difficult to apply correctly, and presumably you should want to re-apply after a while. It is mid-priced, so I guess you have to compromize a little.

"Royal Gold pour Homme" by Charriol
Attractive fig leaf and vetiver combo in the top notes, but the rest is all oriental opulence. This gives it a completely different character to any other fig leaf fragrance that are usually more on the fresh side.

Now it's up to you: Can you complete this list? What is your opinion or experience with fig leaf?
Re: Some thoughts on fig leaf 10 years ago
I think Miller Harris' "Figue Amère" also has fig leaf, even though the official pyramid only shows fig in the heart it has a very green, obviously bitter leafy head.

To my shame I must admit I know none of the others yet so I might be wrong.
10 years ago
Just coming back from the Global Arts of Perfumery, I can extend my experience on fig leaf perfumes.

"L'Arbre de la Connaissance",
a new fragrance by Jovoy, is built around the fig leaf. Fron the brief impression I got of a paper strip test, it has a certain juicy-fruity character and it should be interestant to give it a closer look.

"Puro Fico", by Officina delle Essenze is a very straightforward fig leaf fragrance. According to the "Puro" line of this brand, their perfumes focus on one single note. Obviously, it is brand new as it is not yet to be found on their website.
10 years ago
Nice post. I own Profumum Dambrosia which is another very good interpretation of fig.
10 years ago
Ever tried Click on the Link diterraneo_Fico_di_Amalfi?
On Me opens with an note of orange the pungent scent of grapefruit dries down
to an zesty accord of Lemon Fig is the predominate note in this scent how to
describe it it's pretty complex to me
in my senses it's semi-sweet with an earthy accord' but unfortunitly it does'nt last long and the grape fruit and lemon makes it smell like a bit wood polish but an interesting scent.

Ever Tried this one Apicius?
10 years ago
No, not yet. Thx fot the recommendation, Lola82
10 years ago
10 years ago
I have the Marc Jacobs Fig splash, which appears to be (according to other reviewers) similar to Marc Jacobs Man, although the former for some reason is marketed to women. There's a strong cypress component which makes the composition seem pretty masculine to me. But it's a refreshing fig leaf cologne for sure, and I recommend it for summertime since it can be splashed with reckless abandon--it comes in a 10oz bottle!!!!

It is now discontinued but available at some discounters for very little money...

10 years ago
"Philosykos" by Diptyque is my favorite. Pure unadulterated fig.
10 years ago
Indeed fig leaf is a love or hate note for many. I personally enjoy it very much, it gives freshness and a beautiful leafy aroma to green perfumes. My favorite so far is "Ninfeo Mio", it's a gorgeous perfume, very natural smelling and it is my guess that it's the combo of fig leaf and amalfi lemon that I respond to the most.

Also tried "Premier Figuier" but didn't do much for me (although I appreciate its beauty).
10 years ago
You know, I surprisingly enjoyed "Fig Leaf". I just wished it lasted longer.
10 years ago
"Wild Fig & Cassis" by Jo Malone is a good affordable cologne and great for people that are afraid of perfume. I don't mean that in a bad way.
8 years ago
Fairly recent discoveries of mine are Fleur de Figuier by Chabaud, a slightly edgy green and woody rendition, and "23 Janvier 1984" by Pozzo di Borgo, a refined composition featuring fig and vetiver.
8 years ago
I second the Chabaud. It is one of the best renditions of a fig tree that I have come across.
8 years ago
There is also Wilde from Jardins d'Ecrivains. I can only compare it to Ninfeo Mio, since I don't know all these others. Wilde is relatively fresh and light. It has a bit of milky/metallic oddness. I used to love Ninfeo Mio, but now I am not a big fan of either one. They both seem irritatingly sweet, and they both project unnaturally, reminding me of some kind of chemical spill.
8 years ago
Two interesting fragrances:

Fig Tree Sonoma Scent Studio
Pi Neo Tropical Paradise - it is a limited edition.
8 years ago
My husband wears and loves Premier Fig Extreme.
4 years ago
I like fig-leaf: I find it a very attractive & distinguished note, with its tobaccoleafiness but sweeter. Instances of it that I would adduce are ~Rosabotanica~ by Balenciaga, ~Sine Die~ by Laurent Mazzone, & ~Noble Fig~ by Ferrari. In all three of these it was actually primarily the fig-leaf note that inclined me towards the whichever 'fume in the first place, before I had learned that it ^was^ that.
2 years ago
there's the Guess 1981 Indigo and Zegna Milan
NISHANE 1 year ago


1 year ago

Fig Tea by Nicolai Parfumeur Createur - is a warm yet refreshing fig - osmanthus tea, with a hint of spices and herbs. Fig note is quite prominent here.

9 months ago

In general, I am fond of fig note, disregarding whether it comes from fruit, leaf, or tree. Noble FigNoble Fig , Armani Privé - Figuier EdenArmani Privé - Figuier Eden , and Guess 1981 Indigo for MenGuess 1981 Indigo for Men are just some take on that accord. Enjoy.

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