The family here is the one of Quorum and Kouros, the glorious, "heavy", uncompromising masculine powerhouses, here however with a slightly less raw and savage personality, more sharp and refined, and with a slightly bolder floral side comprising lavender and other "soapy" notes. In a way, you can also smell the roots of the future Bel Ami, above all for a similar soft, slightly soapy and rich leather note. However Jules is surely rawer, mossier, more herbal than Bel Ami – closer to the abovementioned powerhouses. A "brown", young scent, dirty but classy, roaring but effortlessly restrained. A good, even great scent, although perhaps not that great enough to justify the increasing crazy prices it sells for nowadays (mostly because of the close similarity with other fragrances... in other words, if you already own Quorum or Kouros, you won't really miss Jules).
Edit: I got a bottle as a gift. I was kidding about the "not-that-great-enough", that was just because I couldn't afford it. It's FANTASTIC!
24th July, 2014 (last edited: 22nd January, 2015)
The galbanum note makes it unique and very uncommon. You can also easily smell the black pepper which rather smells like fresh pepper and not the dried one.
I gave a neutral mark because of the cedar wood note. It can smell like an old wooden furniture which people and myself included can associate with a ''grandpa smell'.
It has nothing in common with Kouros or Bel Ami. I already used two bottles of Jules and three bottles of Kouros to know that. Jules is much more dryish I would say it's a green woody fragrance. Without the cedar wood note I wouldn't hesitate to give a thumbs up.
The notes in the pyramid here in basenotes are totally wrong.
I get mostly a strong Moss and Artemisia in a Fir background. notes of Carnation, Rose and Jasmine give a faint flowery accord to the heart and I get some whiffs of leather and woods late in the drydown, bul Artemisia and Moss totally dominate this perfume from start to finish.
What does “vintage” mean in perfumery? It doesn’t have the same meaning as wine, where the noun ‘vintage’ refers to a specific year. We use ‘vintage’ as an adjective to connote quality and a timeframe. The time implied is somewhere in the past. Anywhere in the past, as long as it isn’t still current. The intimation, aside from connoisseurship is, is that the better/best version of a perfume is no longer made. The current model is defective.
One force that presses the issue is restriction/reformulation. The chypre genre has become vintage by extinction due to the restricted use of oakmoss. Any given chypre becomes vintage the day after the fatal reformulation. The coumarin that allows for the the fougère genre is restricted. Has the genre gone the way of the chypre? Obsolescence as a result of die back?
So is the fougère necessarily vintage?
Fuck if I know, but have you ever smelled Dior Jules? It's spectacular. It reminds me why I grew up loving the smell of Paco Rabanne pour Homme and easily fell in with Yves Saint Laurent Kouros as a young man. The fougère reaches out for you. It reminds you why the term inspiration carries multiple meanings. It is optimistic by nature.
Jules takes advantage of everything the genre offers. It is gregarious. It is broad. It is handsome. It hits the balance point between cleanliness and funk that makes you want to throw your arms around your fellow humans and smell them. It has the soapiness/muskiness balance that makes the genre so agile, but adds a bouquet garni and a smile.
So here's the question: does Jules still exist? I have a decant from a friend who bought it in Paris a few years ago. It's unavailable in the USA where I live. I believe it always has been. Is it "vintage"? Has it gone the way of the chypre and the passenger pigeon?
The chypre was bled to death over time. Is the same happening to the fougère?
Dior’s Jules belongs to a fragrance group that I like to think of as BFFFs: Big, Fat, F#%&ing Fougères. These include scents like Kouros, Havana, Lauder for Men, and Pascal Morabito’s Or Black. They’re all titanic, spicy, animalic scents that somehow manage to be at once savage and sophisticated, and I love them!
To my mind, Jules occupies the middle ground among these giants. It does not flirt as dangerously with the reek of wild animals as Kouros does; it does not strive for Havana’s spicy exoticism; nor does it breathe the same dark, threatening smoke as Lauder for Men and Or Black. Jules is also a bit sweeter and brighter in its drydown than the rest of them.
For all these reasons, Jules doesn’t compel me quite as much as the others. On the other hand, I can see how this same relative “neutrality” could make Jules the most appealing of the lot for many wearers. In any case, its quality is unassailable, and if you share my taste for monster fougères, you ought to give Jules a try!