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Friday, January 02, 2009

LesNez Manoumalia: Perfume Review

By Tom

Has if really been two years since LesNez released their last perfumes? These days that's something like the run of the original Beetle. Perfume houses, even some niche ones seem duty-bound to release something on schedule, no matter how variations-on-a-theme or unfinished or just terribly "meh" they might be.

Luckily, LesNez is not that sort of company.

Created by perfumer Sandrine Videault, Manoumalia opens with a rush of clean, dry vetiver. If it had stopped there I would have been very happy. But what came after made me go "Squeee!": the sharp, clean vetiver was slowly joined by tiare flower and subsequently by amber. The gardenia-like tiare and resinous, glottal amber warm the scent like morning sun. Sandalwood and Ylang Ylang ground it, completing the whole south-seas effect. Reading this you might think that this could be way over the top and perhaps in lesser hands it could be; Ms. Videault cleverly keeps the sillage relatively on the down low and quite sly, and the scent is as apt to give off a whiff of that bracing vetiver as it is the delicious tiare. It manages to be gorgeous but office-friendly, sexy-as-hell yet discrete; it's a trip to the tropics
just in time for the dreariest part of Winter.

This one is scheduled for release in January, and it's to be hoped it will be at Luckyscent at about the same time. I have no idea about the price point, but if they can keep it in the $80- $90 dollar range I will be very happy.



Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi Tom, your description of Manoumalia made me very curious and reminded me of another tropical scent, Ormonde Jayne Frangipani. How would you say they compare?

4:46 AM EST  
Blogger Dusan said...

Seems 2009 has begun promisingly ~ great review, Tommyboy, but you've just made it harder for me to sit still until mid-January, which is when my sample is supposed to arrive.
And 'glottal' is such a perfect descriptor, I know exactly what you mean by that and plan to use it every chance I get! :)
Happy New Year, everybody!

6:28 AM EST  
Blogger Kelley said...

Tom, happy new year!!!

I wrote for a free sample of this weeks ago but still no luck! This sounds very interesting to me as I love the notes. Have a great year!

9:56 AM EST  
Blogger ScentScelf said...

Oh, ho...vetiver appearing again...timing is so good, as I have just learned to appreciate it. White flowers, amber....verrry interesting. I'll be able to hold on to my horses until my own sample arrives (good luck, Dusan!), but your review does mean the stopper will come off quickly and I'll take it for a couple of rides, no matter what the first impression is.

I, too, appreciate that when creating a scent, somebody waits until it is right.

9:59 AM EST  
Blogger Ducks said...

Oh, I am dying to smell this one. Sounds amazing.

Happy New Year!

11:23 AM EST  
Blogger tmp00 said...


I haven't tried that one, now I'm going to have to!

12:01 PM EST  
Blogger tmp00 said...



I love that word too! So onamatapoeic!

12:04 PM EST  
Blogger tmp00 said...


Where's you been?

We want to read what you think of this one too!

12:04 PM EST  
Blogger tmp00 said...


I'm sure your samp will get there soon. I was told mine would be mid-Jan as well!

12:05 PM EST  
Blogger tmp00 said...

Ducks- it is pretty amazing. A white flower I'd wear myself!

12:06 PM EST  
Blogger Alyssa said...

Can't wait for my sample to arrive!

I've been enjoying my white flowers lately--a surprise for me, but somehow perfect in the cold.

2:34 PM EST  
Blogger tmp00 said...


I think you'll like this. It's not over the top but has a nice fresh beachy/jungle vibe to it.

2:50 PM EST  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ohhh, now I'm holding off on ordering something else. My sample is supposed to arrive by mid-January, and this sounds lovely. I can't imagine they'd go over the top, and while I'm not a white-flower fan, I'm a giant vetiver AND glottal-stop amber fiend! [Dances off in direction of orange trees.]

10:45 PM EST  
Blogger Flora said...

Hoo boy, the lemming express just left the station! Positively mouth-watering description, and if vetiver and white flowers don't say "me" then nothing does.

1:11 AM EST  
Blogger tmp00 said...


I'd love to read how you found it!

1:20 AM EST  
Blogger tmp00 said...


did you send away for a sample?

1:21 AM EST  
Blogger Flora said...

No, I did not know about this one until just now! I have never tried anything from this house, looks like I need to fix that.

6:50 PM EST  
Blogger March said...

Tom, fun reading your contrasting reviews with Marina! I am not the queen of the tropics but this sounds like a must-try.

9:56 AM EST  

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