Back To The Future – Review: Robert Piguet Futur

I always had a healthy respect for Robert Piguet perfumes.

That involved mainly to stay away from them. I had a traumatic encounter with Fracas once, that seemed to have scarred me for life. And out of a kind of clan liability I avoided all of Fracas’ siblings too. No Bandit for me, and no Futur.

I am on my way exploring the Green facet right now, so of course Futur popped up left and right. I also comes highly recommended by Marina, so it was time to break the Piguet embargo. It was unjustified anyway. Maybe even Fracas and I can be friends one day. Okay, that is probably taking it too far 😉

Futur was first released in the 1960ies, in 2009 in was re-released in a reworked form created by Aurèlien Guichard, notes include bergamot, neroli, violet, jasmine, ylang ylang, vetiver, cedar, and patchouli.

First of all,  Futur is not necessarily what I expected, namely a massively green fragrance, but that doesn’t mean I don’t like it.

It is an old-fashioned perfume in the best sense of the word.

Futur’s initial blast is indeed green, very much so, like crushed stems and leaves, and I love it. The crispness and pungency of galbanum (not listed, but I seem to smell it) paired with bergamot is bracing, almost bitter but entirely lovely. It goes away so fast, though!

I was hoping for a green-all-the-way perfume, but that is not what Futur is, soon it takes a turn towards floral, a classic bouquet of jasmine, rose and a hefty dose (at least to my nose) of ylang-ylang take over the stage, nothing soft about those flowers too, at this stage Futur is almost too loud for me, but the attention seeking flowers get sleepy after a while and retire.

In the base some green reappears in a more somber variant with vetiver and cedar, still heavily tinged with ylang-ylang, but the character has entirely changed.

The crisp, almost haughty and unapologetically radically green beginning, that I love so much, is irrevocably gone, replaced with a more enigmatic base, no longer exuberant, but more murky and almost pensive in character and also very sweet (at least on me, but I tend to amplify sweetness.)

Color wise in my head, this perfume turns from bright green, to almost hot pink in the heart to a greenish brown in the drydown. Very interesting, very unexpected, but not the green I was hoping for.

In my disappointment I am in all likelihood not doing Futur justice, for it is really good. A very classical and elegant, very old-school and traditional perfume with an edge that keeps it interesting. It is just not green all the way.

It is hardly the fault of a perfume when it doesn’t fulfill my expectations, is it?

I like Futur and it will be worn. Like every fragrance it takes a certain mood to come to life for me. I will seek it out on days when I feel an inner need to assert myself, to show strength, to demonstrate power, that would make Futur the ideal companion.

As for my desire for greener pastures though, the search continues…

Picture source: Image of Dior dress from the 1960ies via, some rights reserved, thank you!

About Olfactoria

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15 Responses to Back To The Future – Review: Robert Piguet Futur

  1. Interesting that you’re a bit wary of Piguet perfumes. I feel the same. But you’ve made me think that I should re-investigate some of the samples that I have stashed away.

    Great review.

  2. Marina says:

    It develops on you in such an interesting way, but if doesn’t quite hit the spot, then on to pastures greener indeed 🙂 How about the classic Private Collection or, for a different green, Silences?

  3. Tara says:

    Lovely review and photo as always.

    I had the same experience with Bandit. I thought I loved leathers generally but turned out I only love birch tar. I must admit I find harsh, green, galbanum-type perfumes really intimidating! They are like stern matriarchs to me, but I am sensitive to anything rather bitter. Futur doesn’t sound so scary though, so will check it out when I make my planned trip to Liberty – along with about a million other things 🙂

    • Olfactoria says:

      Oh, can I go with you to Liberty, please? I love that store, it is so impressive from the outside and so quirky on the inside. Have fun on you sniffing tour!
      I love green, maybe I am a stern matriarch…;)

      • Tara says:

        You seem the opposite of a stern matriarch so I’m sure I’ve labelled greens unfairfly from my limited exposure. Looking forward to exploring this facet and educating myself through your reviews.

        I have a strong feeling it’s going to be a very expensive trip to Liberty, that’s for sure!

  4. Victoria says:

    I am not a fan of Futur at all, mostly because it feels to me that the reinterpretation neither captures the spirit of the original nor offers much in the way of novelty. It is neither here nor there for me. Plus, another total dealbreaker–whenever I wore it, people remarked that it smelled old-fashioned, whereas even my vintage Carons (which are even more old-fashioned by today’s tastes) never elicited such a reaction, only compliments.

    • Olfactoria says:

      I didn’t have the chance to compare the original and the reformulated versions. How is the reformulation lacking in your opinion?
      I got the “you smell like my grandmother” judgment too when wearing Futur, but since it came from my husband, it is something I am used to 😉

      • Victoria says:

        The original is more leathery and yet greener too. But it is not so much that the reformulation is lacking. You know, the more I think about it, the more I am convinced that the original may not be the most classical of the line. It just does not have the timeless quality of Fracas or Bandit. I am used to the vintage aesthetic, but even to me, Futur seems old fashioned.

        • Olfactoria says:

          Well, I feel vindicated now, my first thought was “old-fashioned”, but I am too inexperienced to put that in as broad a context as you are able to. I will explore Bandit next, I found a vintage one on ebay, I hope it is fine. We will see…:)

  5. Tarleisio says:

    Robert Piguet is not a line I’ve ever tried, per se, although I do recall one of my mother’s friends wearing Fracas, and I couldn’t get away fast enough! But for something green, something the uncompromising Germaine Cellier could have created, for instance, something to put a little – or a lot – of titanium in your spine, you’d expect a bit more, I suppose.

    Uargh. Add another to the list of Must Try Before The Year Is Too Much Older…;)

  6. Pingback: Greeeeeeen! – Review: Robert Piguet Futur | Olfactoria's Travels

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