What are your favourite “back to nature” fragrances?
Which perfumes bring to mind trees, leaves, green stems or grass?
Is there a perfume that transports you to a rural idyll?
Or have you yet to find a green fragrance that appeals to you?
Vintage Vol de Nuit parfum has opened me up to green fragrances and now I want to know more. For me, this classic Guerlain conjures up fresh green shoots in the opening and the deep and complex scent of woodland undergrowth in the base. Now I’m wondering whether I should make an unsniffed purchase of Jacomo’s Silences or vintage Vent Vert by Balmain.
I was already a fan of Trefle Pur by Atelier Cologne because of its unusual clover note, but I’ve recently been spellbound by the ultimate enchanted forest that is Ormonde Woman.
Just like a walk in the country, these fragrances seem to lower my blood pressure and soothe my nerves.
Please share your own favourites. I need more!
My answers are Creed’s original vetiver and Guerlain’s jicky. The first one has very cotton-shirt like feeling, I think. The other one has relaxable feeling. Both of them will match a country side walking.
Two nice choices for a relaxing walk in the country.
It’s good to have a scent with a cotton-shirt like feeling in your collection.
L’Artisan Mechant Loup (woods and fallen leaves) and Chanel Bel Respiro (green green).
Ooh, I really like the green stems and grass of Bel Respiro. I’d own a bottle if money allowed. One day hopefully.
Hi Tara, for me it would have to be Weekend a Deauville, Le Temps D’Une Fete (both by Nicolai) and Chanel’s Bel Respiro. My favourite green fragrances, but not necessarily evoking walks in the countryside, are Chanel no 19, Estee Lauder Private Collection and Guerlain Chamade. Cheers, Madeleine.
Madeleine, I can absolutely imagine those last three being perfect for a stroll in the great outdoors with extra class!
I don’t know Weekend a Deauville so I’ll have to look into that.
Ormonde Woman is one of my choices, the other is Hilde Solianis Tutti Mattis per Colorno, it has notes of hay, grass and wild flowers, like a walk in the country in the autumn.
I love a hay note and they are so rare to come by so I’ll have to check out Tutti Mattis per Colorno.
I suspect the wonderfully striking Ormonde Woman will be a popular pick.
I had the luck to try the upcoming Luberon by Maria Candida Gentile, and it’s the purest and most beautiful walk in the green that I ever experienced. Just like being in a field of aromatic plants.
You make it sound wonderful, Rob. Perfumes that can transport you like that are very special.
I think that all the perfumes by Maria Candida Gentile do that trick. I’d call her an impressionist.
Quite a talent then!
Indeed! And not very known. I think she fits my idea of “exclusivity”.
My favorite category!
Nasomatto – absinth
Nasomatto – hindu grass
Comme des garcons – zagorsk and monocle hinoki
Blk dnm – 2
Cb i hate – Patchouli empire
Not exactly green fragrances but wery forestlike.
I know theres more, let me think about it for a while 🙂
I’m glad we’re talking about your favourite category today, lulllull!
I’ll happily take all green and forest-like fragrances. Come back with more if you think of them.
I first wore Andy Tauer’s ‘Lonestar Memories’ on an autumn day, and it matched it perfectly – it is my memories of autumn – damp woods and russet leaves and wisps of bonfire smoke – a combination of Tennyson’s ‘Tithonus’ –
‘The woods decay, the woods decay and fall,
The vapours weep their burthen to the ground…’
and R L Stevenson’s ‘Autumn Fires’
In the other gardens
And all up the vale,
From the autumn bonfires
See the smoke trail!
Pleasant summer over
And all the summer flowers,
The red fire blazes,
The grey smoke towers.
Sing a song of seasons!
Something bright in all!
Flowers in the summer,
Fires in the fall!
I would so love to smell vintage ‘Vol de Nuit’ and ‘Vent Vert’ !
Thanks so much for sharing such beautiful poetry with us, Maggie.
I love Autumn for all of it’s glorious aromas of fallen leaves, damp earth and bonfires. I can imagine Lonestar Memories fitting beautifully.
I’ve been on the search for Green Scents for a long time now, and my vote goes for Bel Respiro. Strangely, Ormond Woman is anything but green for me, so the search continues…
Aah, I wonder if you are one of those people who gets mostly amber from Ormonde Woman. I get a smoky pine forest.
If Bel Respiro doesn’t go on my To Buy List by the end of today it will be a miracle.
Ormond Woman is rather a black scent for me than green – I get spices, then the florals and then wood, but wood as in cut wood and not the living ones in the forest.
BTW, I like the hay note as well… (P. de Nicolai’s Kiss me Tender).
I can totally relate to Ormonde Woman being more black than green. It doesn’t have that freshness of a lot of green perfumes (to put it mildly!). More like a smouldering forest.
I’ll make a note of Kiss Me Tender, thanks.
I get mostly amber from Ormonde Woman, after the first lovely 5-10 minutes. Sigh.
Wow, 5 to 10 minutes then straight to amber? Too bad that enchanted forest doesn’t last longer.
My favorite “walk in the forest” scent for fall is Tom Ford’s Moss Breches, it is my Barbour jacket perfume. 😉 Also great in my opinion are Ormonde Woman, SSS Forest Walk, Guerlain Sous le Vent and the new Mito by Vero Kern. Dior Granville and Chanel Bel Respiro are great in warmer weather and so is PG Bois Blonde. For a walk through winter woods I love Andy Tauer’s Incense Extreme or Incense Rose.
Great question, thank you, Tara!
So, so many great perfumes, B!
Moss Breches sounds wonderful. Too bad it’s been discontinued, right? As for Forest Walk – of course! Mito is a beautiful green and I need to dig out my sample of Granville. I’d forgotten about the summer meadows of PG’s Bois Blond.
Incense Extreme is great and that reminds me Armani’s Bois d’Encens is another great outdoor incense
I quite like a bit of green so Nikki de Saint Phalle, Salamanca (Olympic Orchids) and Impromptu (Roxana Illuminated) and The Hermes Jardin crew are also yummy green garden walks.
Thanks for a mention of the Jardin series, Portia. Very fitting!
hi Tara, for me Sisley Eau de Campagne reminds me the fresh cut grass. Furthermore, Tuberose criminal by Serge Lutens, like a flowery garden in south Spain, Andalousie to be more exact.
Lilly of the Valley by Penhaligon’s the same, as well as its violet fragrance. Green Tea by Bulgari, a soft green tea smell, transports me to India smells about tea.
Les Scales by Dior, the lemon, limes, bergamots, come to my mind fruit trees in Italy as well.
Hope that helps, much love, Silvia.
Thanks for all your green favourites, Silvia.
You’ve reminded me of Eau de Campagne which I love. A great, light, cut grass perfume for summer.
Another great monday question sweetheart!
For walking in the country I would say Duel from Annick Goutal, as it smells of wheat and hay.
For a visit in the forest another Annick Goutal – Nuit Etoilee or Sonoma Scent Studio Forest Walk
I’m glad you’re enjoying today’s question, lucasai.
I need to try Nuit Etoilee, not least because of that gorgeous blue bottle!
Definitely. It is really nice.
How funny, you just replied to my comment at the moment I hit “press” button for my todays post.
Synchronicity abounds in Perfumeland!
Yaay! Drop by my blog when you have time 🙂 You’re all cordially invited.
I would have to agree wih a few others on Ormonde Woman, I have Jacomo silences and Vent Vert if you would like me to send you some to try?
Ormonde Woman is every aspect of the forest bottled, isn’t it?
I’d love to try some Silences and Vent Vert, please! I’m trying very hard to resist those pesky unsniffed purchases.
I agree with the votes for Ormonde Woman (it really does smell like an enchanted forest) and Bel Respiro (which is pure snapped stems, but not in a good way).
I would also add Heeley’s L’Amandiere: the opening actually brought tears to my eyes as it transported me immediately to summer picnics sitting on top of hay bales as a child, unfortunately the dry down was horrible plastic on me. Plus PG Bois Bond, which has a similar opening but then completely vanishes on me. I would love to find some more wearable options in this category so what a perfect Monday question – thank you Tara!
Alex, that’s really too bad about the drydown of L’Amandiere. What a shame after such a moving opening. Same with Bois Blond. I hope other people’s answers today give you some more options to try.
Heeley is one of my newest finds and I love L’Amandiere from the very beginning to the end. It’s a Chameleon scent on me : some days it’s green – and on others it’s sweet lilac.
I think I’ve only tried the leather Heeley.
Chameleon perfumes are great because you never know what you’re going to get (as long as you like it!).
What about Norne by Slumberhouse? Dark, resinous, deep green norwegian forest. Hemlock, pine…and the base is amazing!
Oh I don’t know that one but it does sounds like a sister of Ormonde Woman. Thanks for the heads-up.
For green, grassy and/or forestry delights, I love Aftelier’s Secret Garden, Parfums de Nicolai LeTempts D’Une Fete, and SSS Forest Walk. I would also cast a vote for Lauder’s Private Collection Jasmine White Moss, Florascent’s Vetiver, and Strange Invisible’s Musc Botanique.
Le Temps D’Une Fete and Forest Walk are popular countryside ‘fumes and rightly so, but I’m glad you’ve picked some more less obvious ones too. Though naturals don’t seem to work for me, I do like the sound of Secret Garden.
I should also add SSS’s Nostalgie, which I’ve been wearing all day. Quite mossy and dusty. Almost too deep and green velvet for the warm day we’ve had.
Your vote for Nostalgie is noted! It sounds beautiful, whatever the weather.
My favourites of this category would be:
Hermes – Jardin en Mediterranee (summer in the woods),
Lorenzo Villoresi – Yerbamate (feeling of spring and young grass with a hint of herbal spices in the air),
Montale – Patchouli Leaves (smell of damp leaves in an autumn forest)
Serge Lutens – Silver Iris Mist (forest in a rainy day)
Ellia, I love your list because it captures many aspects of this category of perfume. ISM is a great call. I can imagine coming across that rooty, murky, scent in the depths of a forest during autumn.
Yeah, that’s one of my favourite categories… especially when I’m in melancholic mood (that in autumn happens to be every second day) I really like to wear that kind of fragrances – close to nature… closer to my inner-self 🙂
Ellia, I can totally relate! I get very melancholic in autumn. I think it’s to do with the ethereal quality of the light (or something!). Isn’t it when the veil between our world and the next is supposedly at its thinnest? I think close to nature fragrances are perfect for that feeling too.
Chanel Bel Respiro is the first fragrance that comes to mind — and here are a few others: Coty Chypre (smells like a meadow to me), Etro Palais Jamais (green woods with a campfire), and La Via del Profumo Hindu Kush (a hike on a mountain). Vero Kern Mito and Deneuve by Catherine Deneuve both smell like beautiful gardens. And Nina’s suggestion of Lorenzo Villoresi’s Yerbamate is perfect … it reminds me of being in Bar Harbor, Maine, and after a walk on one of the old carriage paths through the woods, you come to a clearing where there is a restaurant seemingly in the middle of nowhere where they serve tea and popovers on the lawn. I think that’s going to be my scent of the day now, if I can locate my sample. 🙂
Suzanne, you’ve come up with so many wonderful perfumes which reflect so many aspects of what we think of as “green”.
I love the yerbamate note and your description of walking through Bar Harbor is incredibly enticing. I’d love to have popovers on the lawn with you and I don’t even know what they are!
Tara, that would be so much fun! Popovers are made with a batter that is very much like Yorkshire pudding — they sort of look like a muffin but are much puffier and quite airy.
Oh, and in my comment above I referenced Nina as being the one who mentioned Yerbamate, when the credit for that one actually goes to Ellia. Ack … I’m all mixed up today. 🙂
Don’t worry about it, Suzanne. It is Monday after all!
Ooh popovers sound lovely. I am partial to a Yorkshire pudding…
I was commenting to insist that you really must get Silences, and then I saw that a kind friend is going to send you some. It is such an eerie, contemplative green, hope you love it.
I absolutely adore, adore, Le Temps d’une Fete. Reminds me of being in a little glade, late afternoon, green grass and green moss under the trees and green leaves and sunshine shafting down through the leaves… it has been reformulated this year, though, and has lost some of that golden sunshine quality. It’s much lighter.
Magie Noire is a windy wet autumn night for me. Quite green and blustery. Coty Chypre is Elemental Green Power, WHOA MAMA. Kenzo Parfum d’Ete – the smooth laydown leaf bottle, not the older, muguet-heavy, veined frosted upright leaf bottle – is very quietly green and grassy-flowery.
With your description of Silences as an eerie, contemplative green, I’m sure I’ll love it.
I had that smooth lay-down bottle of Kenzo Parfum d’Ete in my pre-perfumista days and I loved it. It’s been a long time since I tried Magie Noire. I remember it as a rather dark and tempestuous. I’ve never had the pleasure of experiencing the classic that is Coty Chypre but “whoa mama” says it all!
Creature by Kerosene – pure, untamed nature! The opening is almost like inhaling pure chlorophyll. To me it’s the most authentic smell of meadows and forest, I’ve smelled yet. Apart from the real thing, obviously.
Thanks for the scoop on Creature, Safran. You can’t get much more green than pure chlorophyll!
Pure, untamed nature is a great thing to find in a perfume.
I am another Bel Respiro lover, but mostly for spring and summer. For Fall and Winter I really find Sycomore to be the Chanel I love for a cozy outdoors in the woods feeling. I had a chance to smell JM’s Oud and Bergamot the other day and found it strangely similar to to Sycomore. Dying to try SSS’s Forest Walk.
Yesss, agree with you, SonomaVelvet 🙂 How could I forget my beloved Sycomore? I adore this one too…
I agree about associating Bel Respiro with spring and summer. I guess it’s because it has that new green shoots feel about it. Sycomore is a wonderfully sophisticated choice for autumn/winter. I remember Suzanne once saying that she likes to be “wrapped up in vetiver” and I love that idea.
I bet you will love Forest Walk when you get to try it. It has a lot of fans.
Well, for a walk in the country on summer, I’d Ô by Lancôme and OJ Woman.
For a walk in the forest or a field on winter: Winter woods by SSS!
Winter Woods, perfect! SSS make so many perfumes that would be great for rambling in the countryside.
I can totally see O de Lancome for summer but I was surprised by OJ Woman as that’s such a dark autumn/winter scent to me, but I’m glad it works for you
+1 on Mito by Vero Profumo
Also definitely worth a mention is Bosque by Humiecki and Graef. It is basically wild grasses and the scent of summer sun – with a bizarre spermy salty undertone :’) It’s fantastic!
I need to re-test Mito. My expectations were ridiculously high and I was hoping for something as knock-your-socks-off distinctive as her sisters.
Thanks for introducing me to Bosque. It doesn’t sound a million miles away from Mugler Cologne, which is no bad thing.
Mugler cologne has too much transparency – and is literally as it’s name suggests – a cologne.
Bosque is dense, with a salty milky quality in the base, it is hugely unique – infact the whole house is definitely worth exploring but this was the standout for me 🙂
OK thanks for the info, one to watch!
MdO Amyitis, love the mossy note…
Kaia, I just love a mossy note too. Wish you could find it more often.
My first thought was Vacances by Patou for a more summery walk, and I agree with the other commenters who mentioned Bel Respiro and Nuit Etoilee. If it was a country lane, maybe Eau de Camille which is evocative of hedges, and for a foggy walk in a more autumnal wood I would go with Angeliques sous la Pluie. For a ramble in the garrigue of Provence, Sous le Vent that Birgit mentioned would be spot on.
Vanessa, I loved your picks for all sorts of country walks.
Yes, Vacances, I’ve heard a lot about that one. Thanks also for mentioning Angeliques sous la Pluie, which I love.
I don’t know Eau de Camille but a perfume that is evocative of hedges can only be a good thing!
Some fragrances not yet mentioned: Vetiver pour Elle, which says “spring” to me, Philosykos, which is a sunny California day, and Heure Exquise, which is a beautiful flower garden.
Thanks for some lovely choices, Nina.
Vetiver pour Elle is a vetiver perfume I think I would really like.
Philosykos and Heure Exquise are lovely perfumes to wear on a summer’s day walk.
I like many green perfumes (or, at least, those that I qualify as green) but I do not associate them with “back to nature” or “rural idyll” – probably because I do not value those things. I’m very urbanistic. My favorite green perfumes: Chanel No 19 and Vert pour Madame.
I think some green perfumes, like Chanel 19, have something about them which makes them better suited to a day in the city than a country walk.
I am so excited to try Vert pour Madame!
I must, of course, mention Vent Vert both original and new formulations. Bamboo by Yves Rocher, Vetivert by Guerlain, Tom Ford, Hove. Annick Goutal’s Garden Meo (I forget the actual name but I think you will know!)
Hi Nina, I’m looking forward to trying Vent Vert. I’m glad to hear you are happy with the newer formulations.
I guess you’re thinking of Ninféo Mio by Annick Goutal, which is a green perfume that got a lot of love when it came out, I recall.
Ormonde Jayne’s Ormonde Woman is the perfume equivalent of a walk in the most verdent forest after spring rain…but possibly even better! it must be the black hemlock & violet that do it, but it is unique & really a genius creation of Linda Pilkington!
Ormonde Woman is totally unique and you describe it wonderfully. Very few perfumes are so original and distinctive that they stand above the rest, but this is one of them.
Mito and OJ Woman for me! Need to try most of the others mentioned here; off I go to my spreadsheet.
I’m glad you’ve found some perfumes to try from this week’s question. Ormonde Woman and Mito have certainly been popular picks and rightly so.
Probably my all-time favorite back to nature perfume is Vetiver Tonka. I also like Ormonde Woman. And I agree with you about No. 19. It is more city than country for me.
Natalie, I so want to try Vetiver Tonka because you and Undina love it so much. I will get a sample next time I’m in Selfridges. Although I have “issues” with vetiver, I have high hopes for this one.
No 19 has a somewhat steely character to me which makes it urban.
I have three different kinds of forest smells, actually.
1)Bel Respiro is the urban forest in spring; lots of fresh cut grass and new pale green leaves.
2)SSS’s Incense Pure does an amazing job of capturing the pine forests in the Rockies close to me – I told Laurie once that if she lived further north she could easily rename IP “Kananaskis.”
3) And the most surprising for me was smelling Philosykos for the first time earlier this year, because despite the fact I’ve never had the occasion to visit regions where fig trees grow, I KNEW that smell. For some reason, Philosykos on my skin smells exactly like the forests of Northern Alberta where I grew up. One sniff and I’m camping; it’s almost uncanny.
Three wonderful foresty perfumes with such great associations, Dionne.
How lovely that Incense Pure happens to capture the pine forests near where you live. How cool to live by the Rockies! And what a lovely surprise it must have been to try Philosykos for the first time and be transported to the camping trips of your youth.
I SO want a bottle of Bel Respiro for next spring. I just feel guilty because I own 3 Exclusifs already…
I say go for it, Tara, and no guilt whatsoever. Would it help to know that I own four? And that doesn’t count the bottle of Sycomore I want to get for The Engineer.
You know Dionne, that does help. Thanks!
Besides , if they’re great perfumes it shouldn’t really matter if they’re from the same range. It’s going on the list 🙂
“Green” is my absolute favourite fragrance category. A few of my top choices are:
Editions de Parfums Vetiver Extraordinaire
Penhaligon’s English Fern
Trumper’s Wild Fern
And many more. There are also quite a few on my sample list that I want to try at some point.
Hi James, nice to see you have two classically English brands on your list with Trumpers and Penhaligon’s!
Vetivers are very sophisicated, I hope to find a vetiver perfume to love myself one day.
Mugler Cologne is great, not least because you can get a big bottle of it for not much money.
I’m a fan of all things British, so I had to include a couple of English brands in my list. They came to mind first, anyway 🙂 I haven’t owned a full bottle of Mugler Cologne, but I have gone through many sample vials. I really should invest in a big bottle.
I tried Guerlain’s Vetiver early on in my exploration of fragrances, and it is one that took a few wearings to figure out what I was smelling. But I fell for it in a big way. And it’s one of the few fragrances that I insist on vintage bottles.