Tam Dao (2003)
    by Diptyque




    Average Rating: 4

    Based on 485 ratings
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    Tam Dao Fragrance notes

    Sandalwood

    Tam Dao information

    Tam Dao is a unisex fragrance by Diptyque. The scent was launched in 2003

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    $90.00
    50ml EdT
    $129.99
    75ml EdP
    $119.00
    100ml EdT
    $95.19
    75ml EdP
    $111.77*
    100ml EdT
    (*converted from GBP 75.00)

    Reviews of Tam Dao


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    Showing 1 to 6 of 101 reviews.

    misterjohn's avatar

    United States United States

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    Thanks to me friends in the sample selling world, I've now taken a small dip into the world of niche and my main conclusion is that, by and large, the emperor has no clothes. This fragrance offers the space note profile: sandalwood. Nothing else. That could be fine. I can imagine a fragrance with just the note vetiver that explores the many faces of that note. But not here. The opening is sawdust, which is kind of cool and interested. Followed by...some slightly varied wood scents and more sawdust...followed up by more sawdust. You get my drift.

    In my view, perfumery, at its best, is an art form telling a story in scent. There is no story here. There is little art. This is closer to a photograph, and not a very interesting one. The only thing to appreciate is the verisimilitude of the representation. The wood in this fragrance smells like, well, just like wood. In fact, remarkably like wood and sawdust. That verisimilitude is, apparently, the achievement. But I want art, not verisimilitude from fragrance. If I really wanted verisimilitude, I could stuff my clothes with hamster bedding. I'd smell EXACTLY like pine or cedar (depending on the bedding). But I'm looking for more. It's like a Demeter scent except with longevity.

    This is my second one-note nice, and I'm starting to get the impression that, despite the hefty price tag and the laudatory remarks from folks that need to justify having forked over hundreds of dollars for the authentic smell of sandalwood, that the emperor has no clothes! I understand this is not the case with Frederic Malle and other such scents, but an awful lot of this stuff seems like form without substance. I'll take honest designer scents that attempt to tell a story, like Aramis Tuscany, over this any day.

    06th February, 2015

    ClassicFan's avatar

    Canada Canada

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    Goa sandalwood, rosewood, cypress, ambergris

    Surprisingly this is much lighter than I expected compared to Santal Noble. It's a nice fresh scent that doesn't overdo the smoky aspects of Sandalwood. Ambergris is definitely one of my favorite basenotes. It makes everything more like the outdoors and fresh. The tangy cypress adds another aspect I like. This is my favorite sandalwood I've tried so far. It's not perfect though. The sillage and longevity aren't as good as others for the price but scent, while it lasts, is truely wonderful.

    10th December, 2014

    paloma54's avatar



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    I was astounded to smell the phony synthetic sandalwood note which pioneered in Samsara, I believe, and which gags me invariably anytime I'm within a mile of it. So many perfume fans I knew had given it rave reviews. Frankly, I was surprised to find such a synthetic note in a Diptyque fragrance. Big pass here. Because I dislike this note so much, I was unable to smell any of the rest of the fragrance.

    09th August, 2014

    Way Off Scenter's avatar

    United States United States

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    Genre: Woods

    This is supposed to be Diptyque's great essay on sandalwood. Forget the sandalwood. Tam Dao starts out dry and reserved, with a touch of spice and a whole dump truck load of cedar.

    And that's it. Bone dry cedar and sharp spices on a bed of desiccated powder. Pure, simple...wait that's a soap commercial isn't it? Tam Dao is dry wood stripped down to its essence, with none of the potentially distracting notes that soften the edges of scents like Santal Noble or Santal Imperial. It smells like a carpenter’s shop, filled with sawdust. It's also utterly, unfailingly linear, just as many other Diptyque scents. Tam Dao is the Zen of cedar. The bare essentials. The unclouded vision. It's quite the achievement, yet it somehow fails to inspire me.

    05th July, 2014

    Colin Maillard's avatar

    Italy Italy

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    The opening of Tam Dao is nice and quite bold, you smell a lot of sandalwood and cedar, so basically a woody, sweet and slightly creamy accord (thanks to the sandal note) really aromatic and dense, refreshed by some floral notes - I guess white flowers - and with some short-lived citrus notes, on the floral-sweet-aromatic side, like neroli or orange leaves. All over this you also feel a greenish breeze, a bit plastic but crunchy and pleasant, which I don't know what may be due to exactly, it smells like Iso E plus green notes. Anyway: basically Cèdre by Lutens, less syrupy and more greenish. To be honest Tam Dao smells as much pleasant as plain to me: it's all a bit boringly glossy, polished, restrained as if all note were perfectly finished with a synthetic trim. It smells, say, a bit "grey" overall, despite the attempt at recreating a naturalistic type of perfume – assuming that is intended. Plus it has basically no evolution so after a while it becomes (more) boring, especially once you start to smell better the synthetic aftertaste some notes leave. Quite a "meh" for me.

    6/10

    06th May, 2014 (Last Edited: 14th October, 2014)

    2nosedtwin's avatar

    Netherlands Netherlands

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    Diptyque - Tam Dao
    This smells like when you are at a petrol-station on the highway, filling off your car with gasoline. That terpenic, sweet smell that makes you a bit high while you are leaning against your car, thinking of nothing… Tam Dao captures that same meditative feeling when you spray it. I don’t know if this is due to the cedarwood alone, cause that must be one hell of a cederwood!- its very spiced and raw-edged. As the counteract, and central theme, Tam Dao is all about sandelwood(oil) which it contains for about 17%- which is a real heavy dose. On my skin it is gone after ca. 1,5 hours which is much too short, also because I like this perfume. I guess this no sandelwood from Mysore but more one of Australia or Haiti, which are lighter and have less tenacity. But its a very nice, attractive sandelwood that isn’t too dominant. I think this functions better as a perfume to scent the blankets of my bedroom. On the fabric, the tone it sings last longer so it lingers through the room more, which is nice. Its a very natural smelling perfume with a high content of non-synthetic ingredients. In my bottle the cedar- and sandelwood pushes itself up and creeps out of the bottle from underneath the spray cap, making the top of the bottle all sticky- which is a natural behavior of essential oils. This is why I like Tam Dao even more, it really walks a walk of its own. Very nice- thumbs up.

    28th April, 2014

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