Bodyguard – Review: Tom Ford Private Blend Tobacco Vanille

Tobacco Vanille is another one perfect for cold weather. Like an additional layer of clothing, Tobacco Vanille manages to make me feel warm, cozy, toasty and snug, no matter what temperature. But that is not all, this perfume has additional benefits…

Tobacco Vanille includes notes of tobacco leaf, spices, tonka bean, tobacco flower, vanilla, cocoa, dry fruits and wood sap.

I expected Tobacco Vanille to be a lot less sweet. But sweet it is! I get a strong honey note, an aspect of the tobacco leaf that my skin seems to enhance, and the fruity notes are also quite prominent on me, to the point of reminding me of several Lutens perfumes (Chergui for the tobacco and Feminité du Bois for the fruitiness and even a slight inkling of Miel de Bois in the beginning) or Hermès Ambre Narguilé. The first hour is mostly vanilla-honey dessert for me, not bad, but I prefer the more woody, smokier facet coming later.

The balance of tobacco and vanilla is pretty good, no one is taking precedence, both are there in equal measure, making Tobacco Vanille a true pleasure for lovers of both and possibly winning over skeptics of one or the other.

I think I might love Tobacco Vanille even more if it were a bit less sweet, but when it is cold outside this is no problem. I can’t imagine wearing it in summer though.

In classic Tom Fordian fashion, Tobacco Vanille is strong. It has good projection and it lasts for the duration (that is until you shower it off again). Sometimes I like that in a perfume, this trustworthiness, you know it’ll be there for you whenever you need it throughout the day.

Tobacco Vanille is like a good bodyguard, always present, a force to reckon with, but blends in the background, only to lunge forward when needed.

I couldn’t feel more safe.

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42 Responses to Bodyguard – Review: Tom Ford Private Blend Tobacco Vanille

  1. civava says:

    I hope there is not too much honey otherwise it has just everything else I like.

  2. This one of those fragrances that I wish I could love and your review makes me wish this even more! Alas to say I just cannot get on with it, it goes sour and cloying on my skin :(

    I like the imagery of TV being a bodyguard here. Mess with Birgit and her TV will knock you out, it certainly has the power to do so!

  3. GeM says:

    I think honey is a very challenging note. My natural inclination is to put honey everywhere on to the food. I love it!, so I tend to be particularly interested in that note in fragrances. However I have to admit that sometimes can be dreamy, other times a nightmare.
    If this is a reminder of any Serge Lutens —> deserves all attention, that’s for sure (even if conjures Miel de Bois which sadly is a honey I don’t like).
    However I predict worthy to me is the first hour… . and then, as usually, ‘Adéu’… :(
    Why is it so hard to find a fragrance’s drydown that I like?? same old same old!

  4. vanessa says:

    I loved the image of Tobacco Vanille lunging forward when needed. Best not accidentally spritz this on son No 2, as he has a tendency to lunge forward when *not needed*. : – ) Stunt man in the making, for sure.

  5. Melina says:

    i love your review! the analogy with a bodyguard, that is there for you 24/7, is amazing :)
    happy new year and thanks for your always enlightening blog!!

  6. deeHowe says:

    I really, really like Tobacco Vanille! It’s been on my full-bottle list since this last February, when I first tested it with M in Houston. He really likes it too, and wants s bottle. His promised birthday bottle got delayed, and then other bottles got prioritized… Luckily, he’s quite content with his little collection as is, so there’s no pressure! :)

    That honey note is so lovely. I actually found TV to be less sweet over all than By Kilian Back to Black, but that might just be the way it reads on my skin.

    I too love the image of TV as a body guard: reliable but unobtrusive!

  7. Julie says:

    I bought Ari’s bottle of TF Tobaaco Vanille when she was raising money to buy her kitty a Roomba vacuum cleaner. I love it! Perfect for a cold winter’s day but I too can’t see wearing it in the summer. Excellent longevity and moderate sillage, this is one scent where I really enjoy the honey note. Thanks for the great review!

  8. Aaron says:

    Currently draining a decant of this and I love it. I’d hyped this up in my mind so much that I was slightly disappointed if anything upon first trying, but I still liked it. Wearing it more regularly now, it’s really grown on me and I love how both the tobacco and the vanilla come and go through it’s duration. Overall I get a lovely spiced gingerbread vibe.

  9. Natalie says:

    I like this one as well, and I agree with your bodyguard analogy (for strength and force, maybe not so much for blending in the background! :) ).

  10. Tatiana says:

    TV is one of my favorites. It’s not overly sweet on my skin. My college aged daughter loves it too. I keep filling up a travel atomizer of it for her. I think I wil have to gift her with a fb. It has very little sweetness, if at all on her skin. Funny how the same perfume can have variations depending on who’s wearing it.

    • Olfactoria says:

      That astounds me every time, how profound skin chemistry influences a perfume’s smell. It is not always a question of perception as I thought in the beginning, skin is important…

  11. Warum says:

    This is a lovely review! I cannot wear TV because I cannot brush off the association with chai latte. That is all that I can think of when I put it on my skin. Too literal, no room for interpretation…

  12. Tara says:

    After reading your review I MUST try this again. I only sprayed it briefly while at a department store (not the best way to test) and I think I had too much of a fixed idea of what it would smell like.

    There’s a lot to be said for a perfume like this that can stay the distance. I’m so tired of perfumes that disappear in no time, which is especially unhelpful during winter.

    • Olfactoria says:

      It does not fit the idea one gets when thinking about tobacco and vanilla, at least to my nose, so I see what you mean.
      With Tom Ford you mostly get your money’s worth when it comes to staying power.

  13. lady jane grey says:

    Was love for the first sight – it’s my staple, especially when wearing a smart pantsuit…

  14. lady jane grey says:

    Oh, that power woman is sick (flu) since the very first day of her Xmas break – no champagne, but peppermint tea (ddähhh?)

    • Olfactoria says:

      Oh no! I’m so sorry to hear that!
      Niki would approve of your choice of beverage though, nothing better than a cup of good dääähhh! :D
      Be well soon! I look forward to meeting up with you again next year!

  15. Undina says:

    Birgit, I’m catching up on my reading after a short vacation trip, so I’m sorry to come so late to the party. But I wanted to thank you for the PERFECT analogy for one of my favorite perfumes – now I’ll always have that association when I wear it. I bought a decant of it and I think it’ll last me for a while but this is one of the scents without which I do not see my collection.

    • Olfactoria says:

      Hi Undina, welcome back! I hope you had a relaxing trip!
      I’m very pleased that a fan of this perfume thinks my analogy is fitting, and I’m glad to know you are so well protected. :)

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