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Monday, October 24, 2005

Perfume Review. Daim Brun: Armani Privé Ambre Soie by Giorgio Armani

Armani Privé line of fragrances was the result of Armani’s (very understandable) desire to own a scent nobody else was wearing; it was meant to be a private collection of fragrances to be worn by Armani and his close friends. Price was no object; Armani wanted only the finest, purest ingredients, as natural as possible. The perfumes were to be complex compositions, a unisex “haute couture” line. All his life Armani has enjoyed traveling to the East, exploring Tunisia and Morocco, so of course he required a touch of the exotic in his new exclusive scents. Armani Privé line was meant to stimulate memories, evoke past times and faraway places. Eventually Armani was persuaded to start selling his Privé scents, but exclusively in Armani boutiques and selected stores. The line right now consists of four scents, Ambre Soie, Bois d'Encens, Eau de Jade, and Pierre de Lune; according to people in the know, a fifth scent, Armani Privé Amethyst, is about to be released in the UK.

Ambre Soie, allegedly inspired by the sensual feel of silk (soie) and the exotic markets of the East and North Africa, was the Privé scent I wanted to try the most. An amber scent in another très exclusif collection, Ambre Narguile by Hermes, is one of my absolute favorites. In anticipation of something perhaps even more wonderful, I sprayed on some Ambre Soie…It starts rich and dark and surprisingly similar to Serge Lutens Daim Blond, a sweet, warm scent that evokes suede. Whatever that note is, it vanishes within seconds and now it is a very sweet amber scent, almost chewy caramel-like in its sweetness. Cinnamon is quite apparent here, adding yet more warmth to the composition.

This might sound strange coming from someone who enjoys Ambre Narguile, definitely a sweet scent, but Ambre Soie is a tad too sweet at this point even for my taste. When the drydown comes, the inexplicable suede note appears again, this time accompanied by a darkly elegant patchouli accord. Again, I am reminded of Daim Blond and also of Poivre Samarcade by Hermes, both suede-based scents. I am unable to find anything silk-like in Ambre Soie; this is a much richer, heavier, more substantial fragrance than one that would evoke that smooth, lustrous material. On my skin and to my nose, Ambre Soie is sumptuous dark brown suede.

This is a beautiful, rich scent, however, since it reminds me so much of the two of my favorites, one of which I already own, I don’t think I will be buying a bottle of Ambre Soie. This is not a bad thing, taking into account that Privé Eaux de Parfum retail for $185 for 1.7 oz. If you can find them, that is. As far as I know, Armani Privé line of fragrance is carried by Saks; at the moment though, only Bois d'Encens and Pierre de Lune come up when you search the site.

* A “group portrait” of Armani Privé scents are from The photo of Ambre Soie is from



Blogger Marina said...

Thank you, Vikochka! I liked it too, but, just like you, I find it not rich enough. It isn't sheer on me, it is rather "opaque", but it still is not quite rich enough.

8:46 AM EDT  
Blogger Marina said...

Thank you dear N!

Have you tried the other 3 Privé scents? If yes, which is your favorite? I've heard good thigns about Bois d'Encens...

8:48 AM EDT  
Blogger NowSmellThis said...

Perfect review. I liked it but didn't love it. The Eau de Jade was a huge disappointment, and I've yet to try the other 2.

11:14 AM EDT  
Blogger Marina said...

Thank you R! I've yet to try the other 3, I am looking forward to trying Bois d'Encens, but I kind of now that I won't like the other two.

2:03 PM EDT  
Blogger Marina said...

Thank you V! I will keep that in mind when I get my greedy little hands on the other 3 samples :-)

2:40 PM EDT  
Blogger Bela said...

Lovely review! I got a chance to sniff the Armani Privé scents a few months ago in Harrods. They didn't strike me as different enough (I mean different from other existing scents) to warrant the huge price, but they were pleasant. I think my favourite was Bois d'Encens.

2:04 PM EDT  
Blogger Marina said...

Thank you Bela! That is what I thought too, a pleasant, quality scent, but not as outstanding as the price would made us think.

2:06 PM EDT  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you, Vikochka! I liked it too, but, just like you, I find it not rich enough. It isn't sheer on me, it is rather "opaque

5:05 AM EDT  
Anonymous Maria said...

Thank you, Vikochka! I liked it too, but, just like you, I find it not rich enough. It isn't sheer on me, it is rather "opaque

5:06 AM EDT  

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