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Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Perfume Review: Diptyque Eau de Lierre

The smell of ivy is dear to the hearts of the founders of Diptyque. It reminds Yves Coueslant of his house in Normandy, with its view of the sea and the lavish garden with ivy creeping over a wall neat the pond. For Christiane Gautrot, the scent is full of memories of the countryside around Paris and of her family house, La Ferté-Alais, “with its old walls overgrown with ivy running around the garden all the way down to the small canal”. (From Several years ago, Diptyque produced ivy scented candle, and the new Diptyque Eau de Toilette, Eau de Lierre is also centered around ivy.

For a scent based on a note so special for the creators of Diptyque, Eau de Lierre is disappointingly rather ordinary. Sure, it is a pleasantly sharp, slightly bitter green fragrance, but it is rather “weak”, oomph-less and “pale”. Its greenness is just generalized greenness of non-specific trees and leaves. It does not evoke a luxurious, shadowy garden with ivy creeping over the walls nor does it make me think of sunlit, brightly green countryside of a happy childhood. The fragrance doesn’t have enough forcefulness, enough “soul” to evoke anything in particular. It starts with an unexciting verdant note that may be or may not be ivy leaves; despite the fact that the list of notes promises pepper and geranium, the spiciness of one and the bright sharpness of the other are lacking to my nose. After staying agreeably “green” on my skin and not changing much for the better or for the worse, Eau de Lierre dissipates into an even more boring and borderline-aquatic drydown. The Diptyque line of fragrances boast some wonderfully unique, truly interesting scents like Virgilio, L’Ombre Dans L’Eau, Tam Dao, Philosykos, to name a few; unfortunately Eau de Lierre is not nearly as remarkable.

Eau de Lierre is available at Aedes, $60.00 for 1.7oz

* The image is from


Anonymous Anonymous said...

I agree. It also reminded me a little of Andree Putman Preparation perfume minus the driftwood note. Have you tried it?

12:21 AM EDT  
Blogger tmp00 said...

hmm. I have not sniffed this one, but your description makes me not especially want to.

I don't remember ivy (and there's some in my yard) smelling of much. Some vague green with the smell of dirt. Which I would not mind in a scent- there's a world of possibilties there.

Where's l'Artisan when you need them?

12:41 AM EDT  
Blogger Victoria said...

I found it quite peppery in the opening then it softens up to soft and plesant, but not FBW.

1:46 AM EDT  
Blogger lilybp said...

Completely agree; this did nothing for me.
Now, the PG Iris and Aomassai--that's a different story: loved them!

8:20 AM EDT  
Blogger Marina said...

I have tried it and from I remember it was a much more elegant, well-executed composition. I actually thought I wanted a bottle, haven't got to buying it yet

9:08 AM EDT  
Blogger Marina said...

I think L'Artisan could pull it off. Something dark-green and dirty...uhummm

9:09 AM EDT  
Blogger Marina said...

I was looking forward to pepper and of course got none. hrmph.

9:10 AM EDT  
Blogger Marina said...

I am trying to think whether there is a green scent in Parfumerie Generale's line...Yuzu Ab Irato is kind of green, but not *that* green. I think they could do it. Lierre Venenum or Intrigant Lierre :-)

9:11 AM EDT  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dislike weak scents and your description of it as having a "borderline aquatic drydown" kills it on the spot for me. There aren't enough words in the most complete Thesaurus to describe how vehemently I dislike aquatic. The only scent w/ an ivy note that I find interesting is Agatha Brown's Jade, but ivy is just a bit player in that scent.

10:36 AM EDT  
Blogger Marina said...

Is that Agatha Jade Emperor or Empress? I have samples of both and have never gotten to trying them, but I will now.

12:47 PM EDT  
Blogger Marina said...

I think Virgilio is so interesting. not an everyday kind of scent for me, but still very nice. Is that your favorite Diptyque scent?

12:48 PM EDT  
Blogger Marina said...

If Giacobetti made it, I have a feeling that, although it might have been light :-), it would have been more interesting.

12:49 PM EDT  
Blogger priscilla said...

I've only tried four of the Diptyque scents, and while so far Philosykos is my favorite, I enjoyed Eau de Lierre. I found it refreshing, if not remarkable.

12:58 PM EDT  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Only the Empress has the ivy note. Cait just said today in her blog that she's a Top Notes Queen. I'm a Base Notes Queen and the ivy is well gone by that stage, which is my favorite part of Empress. Emperor is nice, but I regret having bought it unsniffed. Love the color of the juice for both, though.

1:02 PM EDT  
Blogger NowSmellThis said...

Yep. For once, we agree, entirely.

2:39 PM EDT  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Got to try it a couple of weeks ago, and it dried down to a near-twin of Eau de Cartier on my skin. Pleasant, but as you say, not remarkable.

3:50 PM EDT  
Blogger Marina said...

if someone gave this to me as a present, I would have worn it. It is certainly pleasant. But it did not make me want to actually order it.

4:54 PM EDT  
Blogger Marina said...

I notice that I usually enjoy the base notes the most too. Perhaps because often they are the darkest/richest/warmest part of a scent.

4:55 PM EDT  
Blogger Marina said...

I would highly recommend the lovely sandalwoody Tam Dao and the wonderful green rose, L'Ombre dans L'Eau Also, you might enjoy Do Son, a tubereuse scent that is not buttery!

4:56 PM EDT  
Blogger Marina said...

I am happy we agree! :-)

4:56 PM EDT  
Blogger Marina said...

I should re-try Eau de Cartier. I have absolutely no memory of it. :-(

4:57 PM EDT  
Blogger marchlion said...

What everyone else said. I was bored speechless. Even the stuff they make that I HATE is interesting. This one was just dull, and I hope it's not the start of a more "broad appeal" trend.

10:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Marina said...

Oh gosh, I hope it's not!

10:03 PM EDT  
Blogger GreatSheElephant said...

I actually rather loved the Eau de Lierre and will buy it. But not till I'm done with my GD Sous le Buis. I find it very very similar (if perhaps a little more watery) and the staying power is superior. Maybe my second favourite Diptyque after Philosykos

4:50 PM EDT  
Blogger Marina said...

I am so glad it worked for you! Sous le Buis, really? I should re-try them side by side. I remember liking S le B quite a lot.

4:52 PM EDT  

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