There is a refreshing transparency about Hiris that distinguishes it from other iris scents I know. It is a dry iris with a crisp green accent and a slight bitter edge. It's more rooty and rougher in texture than Iris de Nuit, Iris Poudre, or Bois d'Argent, and much less sweet than Dior Homme. On the other hand, it's far less gritty and aggressive than Maitre Parfumeur et Gantier's Iris Bleu Gris of Serge Lutens’s Iris Silver Mist.
The heart of Hiris is a lovely, soft blend of earthy-yet-clean iris, diaphanous floral notes, and cool cedar. Though Hiris is marketed as a women's scent, remnants of the opening's bitter greens and the snappy cedar note make it just as easy to wear for men. There is a point midway through the development where Hiris becomes noticeably "perfumey," as rose, neroli, and vanilla bloom on the skin. Then, a bit further on, Hiris relaxes into its honeyed cedar and vanilla drydown. Very nice, and a must-try for any fan of iris scents.
This is one of my all time favorites, the one perfume that sent me off on a never ending iris quest. But I always still come back to this one, like the comfort scent that it is.
My favorite time of year to wear Hiris is actually winter. It feels like the perfect match to a morning walk at first light, as the sun is making the frost covered plants and earth sparkle and glitter. The fragrance, at first, is cold and almost sterile, but yet it already hints at the earthiness and connection soon to come.
Just like you expect yourself to do on your walk, Hiris starts to warm up, and also warm up to you - from cold and sterile introduction to a shy sharing of her natural wonders. The warming earthy rooty smell becomes soft powder coated flowers, still fresh from their frost bath. Even warmer is the hint of honey that will sometimes greet you (and sometimes not I have found!). The softess hint of wood completes the nature walk, as the last frost melts.
Hiris is soft to me, and is nearly perfect. It can serve as an introduction to iris, or it could be the end of the iris journey. It won't over power, or powder, you, but will somehow make you pay attention to it's subtle shifts and changes, offering the steady rhythm and hum of iris, iris, iris...whispered.
Hiris by Hermes is a restrained, silent, liquid and sharp iris fragrance to be intended as a tribute to the starring note of iris, the Queen of elegance and subtleness in parfumery, a fragrance with some herbal and sharp floral accents, with botanic and hesperidic supports (carrot, orange?), some rosey spoor, a barely angular and initially metallic trait and an arcane soapy-laundry feel. The sophistication is pure since an almost inexistent artificial sweetness unveils all the natural and silvan nobility of the royal iris. Just an impersonal and unmild rose flanks the protagonist in its mineral transparence. The iris is neither so pungent and laundry as in Infusion d'Iris nor finally powdery and aldehydic as in Iris Poudre Malle, neither deep, dark and leathery as in Cuir d'Iris Parfumerie General (wonderful scent) nor honeyed and nutty as in Dior Homme. This is an iris from the earth in the same vein of Le Labo Iris 39 although not so earthy-rooty and without the utterly algid support of the metallic violet. An arid, opaque and impersonal cedarwood supports the earthy-floral nobitity of the starring flower before the cristal starts to fade towards an honeyed, musky-boise, more compact and linear dry down of elegant sensuality, human heat and womanly molecules. A great fragrance, a magistral work of balance.
15th November, 2011 (last edited: 04th February, 2014)
Hiris is a introverted elegance a well-poised muse
never reveals herself within words nor action just
her scent of Iris, Hiris opens with it's homage the
Iris a flower a symbol of refinedness and modesty
a scent of cool orris earth adds to the sharp coldness
of the fragrance, the coriander subtle enough not to
cloy over the iris but noticeable in it's spicy drydown
diluted amber dries the top note, delicate and elusive
note of Rose opens the middle note softens the sharpness
of the Iris with it's velvet texture a demure beauty
Neroli turns the fragrance a bit citrusy and grounded.
The drydown consists of unsweeted honey makes an organic
and woodsy finish to this almost of a masterpiece of a
scent next dry cedar conjours a feeling of a forest
after the midnight rain fresh and finishes with almond
tree an nutty accord.
Hiris is a class of it's own not Loud gaudy kitschy
it doesn't take bright colorful sequins dolly heads
fake rhinestones on bottle it's a simple dark blue
bottle less is more.
This scent is just OK with me, which is surprising because I loved the new SL Bois de Soie, and I really loved James Heeley's Iris de Nuit. This more closely resembles Iris de Nuit, but is sweeter and heavier, so much so that it tips into the 'not so great' category with me.
There is a facet to this scent that sinks like a rock on my chemistry - it feels off and discordant. I think I would like it more if Cedar was swapped out for Oak Moss, and the honey note exchanged for something dryer . I can usually spot Giacobetti's touch, but not here. I feel like the business team asked her to go against her good sense and add something 'commercial' to this.
Hiris just doens't stand out in the crowded genre.