I am a huge fan of Orris. However, it often wears too cool or flat for me in a soliflore composition. Therefore, I rarely wear it alone, or have to find it in blended perfumes (Misia is a current favorite). In blends, I sniff endlessly in search of the Orris, never satisfied that I am getting enough.
Irisss is the exception. Orris is right there, the entire time. This is not so much a "perfume", but a performance, a perfect interpretation of Orris. While Oriss is by far the predominant note, and this perfume has the "feel" of a soliflore, it most certainly is not. Xerjoff has meticulously selected supporting notes, used in homeopathic quantities. In minute amounts, Jasmine and Rose add a palatable sweetness, Violet supports the powder, and Carrot Seed gives lift. Vetiver enhances the earthy quality of the Orris, and Musk adds a skin feel that Orris lacks on its own. I can't even detect the other stated notes. Doesn't matter, they are behind the scenes doing what they should- supporting the undeniable and perfect star of this show: Orris.
Yes, the price is absurd, but perfection doesn't come cheap
A very kind friend sent me a sample of Irisss to test when she found out that I still hadn’t been able to track down a sample. She felt that no iris quest would be complete without smelling it, and having smelled it, I agree completely. For an iris lover, this is compulsory sniffing. The price, however, means that it is outside the realms of the possible for most of us mortals, so smelling it might just be a recipe for self-inflicted heartbreak.
Irisss is by far the best pure iris fragrance I have ever smelled, and I feel depressed even writing that, not because it isn’t true but because I’d hate to admit that price might actually correlate to quality when it comes to matters of pure iris root. It matches the iris in Iris Silver Mist for its stunning, crystal-cut purity, but paces well ahead of the Serge Lutens in terms of sheer naturalness and beauty. Irisss is like ISM with all the sinister, synthetic elements removed, and is therefore both less of an artistic statement and much, much easier to wear on a regular basis.
It is very difficult to describe the progression of Irisss, so I won’t try apart from saying that it reads very much like what I’d imagine a tincture of dried iris roots might smell like in isolation – cold, rooty, creamy, buttery – a distillation of the color of freshly-fallen snow or a pail of cream from a cow in an alpine meadow.
I care not a jot for the other notes – don’t care, won’t care – and it seems like they are merely window dressing for that incredible iris butter anyway. There is a bright snap of bergamot up top and a vaguely musky, powdery, almost vanillic dry down that feels luxurious but not intrusive. The very definition of “liquid good taste” as Chandler Burr once referred to iris.
Oh, to be so fondly embraced! I wish it weren’t so (due to its completely unreasonable price), but to wear Irisss is to feel loved. I surrender.
Xerjoff have pulled something almost immaculate out of the hat.
To me this is iris perfected, the buttery, creamy, powdery, soapy, utterly luxurious gorgeousness of it played up, and the rooty and earthy elements given a backseat (despite additional bolstering by a carrot seed note). The supporting notes are handled with a deftness bordering on magic. Just a hint of bergamot to give freshness and a slight tang, so there’s no fear of this turning into a marshmallow. A soft, rounded, airy, floral accord, that accents the iris butter’s creamy beauty without distracting. Similarly the woody notes are barely there, providing hidden scaffolding.
Irisss wears light, light, light, but is there, there, there. It sets me afloat.
It drops off a bit by the 4-5 hour mark and loses some definition, resembling a subdued relative of Teint de Neige.
This is a review based on my full wear of the Attar version of Irisss yesterday. I applied three drops of the Attar on my wrist at around 5pm yesterday and I could still smell the soft musky balsamic deep dry down of the fragrance when I got up at 7am this morning. The fragrance opened with prominent scent of the powdery carrot seeds mixed with rich buttery earthy note of the Iris roots. The scent was quite heavy but not over bearing to my nose. It was actually very comforting and I could not keep my wrist off of my nose for the entire time.
After about 45 minutes of initial application, faint floral notes started to emerge but the buttery warm Iris note remained the most prominent. Although the scent remained basically the same for another four hours, the floral and buttery earthy Iris notes just kept on rotating back and forth making the scent very complex and fascinating.
I could not detect any of the warm Bergamot note until after the Iris note finally began to soften in the fifth hour. After another couple hours, the fragrance became slightly balsamic and musky and lingered on my skin until the next morning.
I am not sure whether the Attar is made to smell the same as the EDP as I really could not detect any incense, Jasmine, Rose or Cedar notes as indicated in the notes description here. IMHO, Irisss Attar is absolutely gorgeous and although it might be leaning a bit towards the feminine side, it is still very wearable for men who look for true elegant and luxurious scents.
This is my dream perfume. If I was rich, I'd buy it by the barrel, and bathe in it. The earthy/carrotty initial blast soon warms into a creamy, pure, perfect orris. For some reason, it evokes speakeasies and flappers to me. I have no idea why. There is a kind of retro vibe for me...somewhat innocent, but trying naughty on for size. Since I haven't won the lottery yet, I only have decants...and those I am nursing along like a baby. Between this, and Iris Silver Mist...I am in orris heaven. Quite simply, amazing.