Mugler : Les Exceptions – Chyprissime

Mars and Venus of Cyprus Surprised by Vulcan (1827) by Alexandre Charles Guillemot

Mars and Venus of Cyprus Surprised by Vulcan (1827) by Alexandre Charles Guillemot

Created by : Olivier Polge and Jean-Christophe Hérault

Date : 2014

Genre : Fresh woods

Concentration : eau de parfum

Do you remember the advice teachers gave you when answering a quiz?  Do the easy questions first!  So… let’s get Chyprissime’s genre out of the way right off the bat.  This is not a chypre… not by a long shot.  It’s from the woods genre.  It’s not even chypre-ish!

You know… before I had my own bottle of Chypre by Coty, I had trouble with the chypre genre because the chypre family is so varied, it’s difficult for beginners to pick out.  I used to go by elimination.  When it wasn’t citrus or floral or leather or amber or fougère or wood… then it was a chypre.  But this one pretty well shouted woods to me the minute I sprayed it on my skin and it never waivered.

I’m not going to say much about this one because I didn’t find it very interesting.  Yes, it’s somewhat smoky.  Yes, it borrows a powdery facet (slight mind you) from the chypre genre and, yes there is a menthol or eucalyptus note in there to keep it fresher than fresh… but all-in-all, it’s a somewhat boring, two-dimensional masculine woods scent… nothing to write home about.  There are literally dozens of woods that are more interesting and so I’ll name just a few… Guerlain’s Vetiver, Chanel’s Sycomore, Creed’s Royal Oud and L’Artisan’s Parfumeur’s Premier Figuier.

I’m slightly to blame for this mediocre review because my hopes were probably too high. Buoyed by my review of Supra Floral which gives Chamade a run for its money, I was expecting an old-school, broad-shouldered feminine chypre.  Maybe even a leather chypre! Alas, no!

So… we move on.  Have a nice week everyone.

Addendum (August 10, 2014) : I just smelled Chyprissime on FiveoaksBouquet and I was totally taken aback… spices, patchouli, vetiver, some smoke… definitely a powerhouse and, yes, a chypre on her.  On my skin, it went all woods.  So… test this one.  I’m wondering if quantity might also make a difference in addition to skin type.  I remember now testing it from the store bottle a couple of times but I probably only sprayed once or twice.

Addendum (August 16, 2014) : Because Chyprissime smelled so wonderful on a friend, I decided to go back and retest it twice this past week.   I thought that perhaps I had originally picked up the wrong bottle (you see, the bottles are not identified)… or that maybe there was something there that I didn’t pick up the first time.  It was definitely the right bottle but after two more testings, it still didn’t come off as a chypre on my skin… more of a dark, patchouli-laced smoky wood.  That said, it’s quite wonderful… great longevity and it has a sublime smoldering quality about it that I loved.  So… this is the kind that you really have to try and judge on its merits but just don’t be surprised if you’re not getting the chypre accord either.


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  1. Parfois les commentaires sur quelque chose de médiocre éveillent plus la curiosité qu’une bonne critique…

  2. FiveoaksBouquet

     /  May 21, 2014

    I guess you can’t win them all… The term “chypre” today seems to be a figment of misleading advertising more than anything. I keep waiting for oakmoss substitutes we occasionally hear peeps about to give the impression of a real chypre once more but so far the only modern-day scent I know of that has approximated a chypre smell is Jasmine White Moss with Lauder’s proprietary “white moss mist absolute.” I wonder what Guerlain has used to restore Mitsouko, which is reported to smell authentic.

    • Maybe Guerlain is using the oakmoss substitute from Mane Laboratories. It’s probably expensive and only Guerlain or Chanel can afford it. As for the pear note which Mugler states in his marketing documentation, I am anosmic to it, I suppose, because I’m not getting it. If I want pear I’ll go to Hermès’ Un Jardin sur le Toit or Elizabeth Arden’s recently released Untold.

      This from Wired magazine:

      “Some chemists have risen to the challenge by brewing up what are, in effect, oakmoss knockoffs. One of the best substitutes is made by Mane, a flavor and fragrance manufacturer in the south of France. The man who developed it, Cyrill Rolland, used his lengthy experience working with natural raw materials to imitate the way the scent of oakmoss seems to evolve as you sniff, first evoking wet timber with a slightly bitter undertone of seaweed and then changing to a dry, woody aroma. Rolland has even captured the garden-mulch color of the genuine article. To an untutored nose, Mane’s fake oakmoss smells like the real thing. But the company must convince a more discerning audience: other perfumers, who are the real customers for this product.”

  3. Natalie

     /  May 23, 2014

    My disappointment is beyond. I was soooo hoping for a mindblowing Mugler take on chypre. 😦

    • Well… not on my skin and not to my nose. I’m looking forward to this collection getting better distribution and reading what other bloggers think of them.

  4. FiveoaksBouquet

     /  October 30, 2014

    If a belated comment is permitted, I am wearing Chyprissime today. Totally agreed a chypre it’s not but it does have that brisk citrus sophisticated tone I associate with chypres with a little bit of a powdery note in the drydown. It is both assertive and discreet at the same time, also a quality I associate with certain chypres. It has lasted all day and I can still smell it this evening. Very nice in its own right.

  1. SCOOP! Les Exceptions by Mugler – 5 new fragrances and 5 more coming | The Perfume Chronicles

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