Getting To Know Dawn – Review: DSH Scent Of Hope And More

By Michael

Not too long ago I read that Dawn Spencer Hurwitz was recreating Jacques Fath’s Iris Gris and I was hugely excited. So off I rushed in an iris perfume loving fragrance geeky dash to get samples.

Little did I know that her new “Scent of Hope” would introduce me to two other of her wonderful fragrances.

Scent of Hope


“Inspired by one client’s devotion to the fabled Iris Gris de Fath perfume, the Scent of Hope is an iris soliflore fragrance at its most voluptuous and luxurious with decadent peach in the top and the kiss of animalics in the drydown.”

Scent of Hope contains notes of:
Aldehydes, Ambrette Seed, Bergamot, Carnation, Civet, Grandiflorum Jasmine, Green Oakmoss, Ionone, Lemon, Muguet / Lily of the Valley, Musk, Mysore Sandalwood, Orris, Orris Concrete, Peach, Vetiver co2, Violet, Violet Leaf Absolute and Virginia Cedar.

Scent of Hope is the fragrance that piqued my curiosity about DSH Perfumes and it didn’t disappoint although, surprisingly, it is not my favourite.

It opens with a hefty dose of iris and an even heftier dose of peach.
The fatty peachy aldehydes provide Scent of Hope with a smooth buttery feel.

This is all underpinned by some floral and woody notes that are quite soft.

Like the original, Scent of Hope smells surprisingly modern.

This is a safe bet for an iris fan but it doesn’t dislodge my personal favourites, Iris Silver Mist and Irisss.
The fact that these two even come to mind is testament to the fantastic job Dawn has done in trying to recreate THE classic.

This is mandatory sampling for iris fans.

In addition to being a lovely fragrance 30% of  Scent of Hope’s sales will be donated to Denver-based, Sense of Security, an organization dedicated to helping those coping with breast cancer afford their treatment and living expenses. What a wonderful show of support for a very worthy cause.


dsh viridian

“Organic. Sultry. Enchanted. An abstract green scent that speaks of dark woods and deep forest floors. The greenest green perfume we make… a sharp green-woody-conifer-herbal design that is deep and cool at the same time.”

Well I didn’t get any greenery at all but I certainly do love this fragrance.

Viridian contains the following notes:
Aloe, Angelica, Artemisia, Australian Sandalwood, Bergamot, Brazilian Vetiver, Celery Seed, Chrysanthemum Absolute, East Indian Patchouli, Galbanum, Oakmoss, Myrrh Gum, Orris Root and Violet Leaf Absolute.

My favourite experience of perfumery is when I encounter truly evocative scents and Viridian is one of the best.
It takes me straight to a golden sandy beach.
The smell of hot sand and sun cream hit me straight away.
Later there are some metallic violets, incense and iris.
Hot stones then join me on this imaginary beach and the sun cream turns into sexy hot skin.

I don’t get anything green despite the name and my experience of this fragrance is so very different to the other reviews I’ve read. Strange. Either this just smells very different on my skin or the sample had the wrong label. I hope it was the former because I love Viridian and want to add it to my collection.

A “beach” fragrance without the obligatory lactonic white floral and vanilla/coconut combo? Sign me up.

Cuir et Champignon


“A rich leather perfume flavoured with the distinct aroma of white button and dark woodland mushrooms.”

Cuir et Champignon contains notes of:
Bergamot, Castoreum, Cepes (Mushroom Absolute), Civet, Clary Sage, Clove Bud, Galbanum, Gardenia, Guaiacwood, Hiba Cedarwood, Honey, Indonesian Vetiver, Leather, Neroli, Orris, Peru Balsam, Sandalwood, Tobacco Absolute, Tuberose Absolute and Wild Chamomile.

Cuir et Champignon is my second favourite of the group.
Being a leather fragrance lover I probably should have expected to enjoy Cuir et Champignon but who would have guessed that a mushroomy leather could work so well.

The opening is very camphorous with a strong iodine like aroma.
The closest smell I can liken to this is the nose of a very peaty whisky minus any alcohol or booze.
This is followed by an old dusty wood smell mixed with strong medicinal birch.
After a few hours Cuir et Champignon softens considerably with the iodine and birch notes lingering on.
Finally a dark mushroom leathery drydown takes over. Lovely.



“Modernism. Minimalism. Urban chic. An abstract masculine design with notes of brushed steel, glass, concrete and motor oil.”

Metropolis contains notes of:
Aldehydes, Ambergris, Atlas Cedarwood, Australian Sandalwood, Bergamot, Black Leather, Brown Oakmoss, Castoreum, Chinese Geranium, East Indian Patchouli, Gallica Rose Otto, Leather, Musk, Petitgrain, concrete and motor oil.

Well there’s a big long notes list and a fabulous description but Metropolis didn’t pan out well on my skin.
It starts with fizzy woods and a touch of leather.
This is closely followed by some green notes, bergamot, aldehydes and geranium.
Brushed steel, concrete and motor oil? I wish I got all of that.
Very quickly Metropolis moves close to the skin and there it remains a very soft skin scent.

Twelfth Night

“A dense and foresty oakmoss rich design that is also a mildly spiced, conifer-woody.”

Twelfth Night contains notes of:
Brown Oakmoss, East Indian Patchouli, Frankincense (Olibanum), Juniper Berry, Laurel Leaf, Myrrh Gum, Patchouli and Spicy and Woody Notes.

On me this was a big patchouli bomb supported by some woody notes and a touch of rose-like notes.
Not much in the way of moss and quite simple.
I think this in one for the hard core natural fragrance and head shop patchouli fans.
Seek out Twelfth Night if either of the above is you!


“An elegant yet full-bodied woody/resinous/conifer design.”

Michelangelo contains notes of:
Ambergris, Atlas Cedarwood, Bergamot, Brazilian Vetiver, Brown Oakmoss, Clary Sage, Frankincense (Olibanum), Himalayan Cedar, Incense, Labdanum, Laurel Leaf, Lemon, Moroccan Rose Absolute, Myrrh Gum, Origanum, Palma Rosa, Peru Balsam, Pine Needle, Spice and Woody Notes and Tobacco Absolute.

The opening of Michelangelo smells very alcoholic to me, something akin to de-sweetened rum.
It then settles down to notes of laurel and lemon/bergamot over a soft resinous mossy base.
A fairly prominent pine note runs through the fragrance alongside some tobacco and vetiver.

Then, over time, Michelangelo dries down to a grassy and woody skin scent.
Unfortunately I’m neither a fan of particularly green nor wholly natural smelling fragrances so this one just isn’t for me.

Again, natural fragrance fans should check this out.

I want to say a big thank you to Dawn for sharing some of her creations with me.
I didn’t love all of them, probably because I struggle with all natural perfumes. Let’s be honest though, when do any of us love everything we try from a perfume house?

The fact that Viridian (here is Olfactoria’s take on the fragrance) and Cuir et Champignon are going straight to the top of my shopping list is convincing enough for me that everyone can find perfumes to love in the DSH line.

Are there fragrances in the DSH Perfumes line that you love?

Do you enjoy all natural fragrances?

Tell me about it below.


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8 Responses to Getting To Know Dawn – Review: DSH Scent Of Hope And More

  1. cookie queen says:

    Never tried any. xxx

  2. Sandra says:

    Those that I have tried were nice but like you I have not ventured much into the all natural perfume world. Perhaps I should… I have read about Scent of Hope and am now quite curious.

  3. Tara says:

    Really enjoyed this. I’ve wanted to blind buy Scent of Hope since reading Asali’s review on Sounds of Scent. Did you get to try the original Iris Gris at the Osmotheque?

    Too funny about Viridian. I wonder if it was a mis-labelled sample or if it really is that different on you. I want to try Celadon as I’m yet to find a green that I truly love.

    Natural perfumes haven’t worked on me to date but I haven’t given up on them. I think DSH Perfumes may be the answer.

    • Michael says:

      I did try the original at the Osmotheque and it was amazing! It was simultaneously better than I could have expected and reassuring to know I could live without it.
      I know what you mean regarding naturals. I’d be very interested in your thoughts when you try some of the DSH line.

  4. Pingback: DSH Perfumes Scent of Hope Extrait Review | EauMG

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