Perfume Directory

Bal d'Afrique (2009)
by Byredo


Bal d'Afrique information

Year of Launch2009
AvailabilityIn Production
Average Rating
(based on 134 votes)

People and companies

PerfumerJerome Epinette

About Bal d'Afrique

Bal d'Afrique is a feminine perfume by Byredo. The scent was launched in 2009 and the fragrance was created by perfumer Jerome Epinette

Bal d'Afrique fragrance notes

Reviews of Bal d'Afrique

Not bad but smells like a watered-down version of Vetiver Tonka and even less like Vetiver Fatal to me, with Vetiver Fatal being among the best vetiver scents I've tried. But they all do share similarities. Very airy and light. Seems more unisex than feminine to me.

Very soft projection but does last all day.
26th October, 2017
I keep trying to write about Byredo’s Bal d’Afrique but it’s hard because it keeps coming out more as an apology for liking it than an actual review.

Anything that seems to receive universal approval fills me with suspicion and the desire to avoid it at all costs. Ugg boots sure look comfortable but I’d gnaw my leg off with a dull incisor rather than put one on. The very notion that so many women fantasize about George Clooney makes him as attractive to me as a used tissue. I very nearly un-coupled my husband when he bought our son a fidget spinner.

In a brand full of crowd-pleasing fragrances, Bal D’Afrique is probably the most crowd-pleasing-est of them all. People love this fragrance.

And damn it, I love this fragrance too. It’s kind of hard not to. I like to think of it as a sparkly, sunlit version of Vetiver Tonka, made all giggly with forest fruit, violets, and lemon. It is one of those perfumes that seems to be all things to all people. Some describe it as musky, cedary violets, some as a creamy lemon scent, and some as a fruity, nutty vetiver. And truth be told, it’s all of those things, and more.

Nothing about Bal D’Afrique stands out and that feels like a deliberate decision. Nudged more firmly in one direction or another, it could easily have been pegged as a vetiver fragrance, a woody violet, a fruity floral, even a foodie amber. But Bal D’Afrique contains a touch of everything and doesn’t press down too hard on one particular note, so it ends up playing like a low-key medley of tunes you hear in a cocktail lounge – wonderfully pleasing but sparkling at a low enough wattage so as not to distract from conversation.

Bal D’Afrique sparkles as hard as a glass of champagne and twirls around on its heels like a five-year old. It’s sweet and tangy and bright and creamy. It’s a veritable piñata of aromas – poke it with a stick and no matter what comes out, you know it comes wrapped in bright paper and will make even the crustiest bugger smile.

Because Bal D’Afrique is so popular, I struggle to respect it, but Basenotes statistics don’t lie: I have used this scent far more than any other this summer, using up an entire travel spray of it over the course of about 4 weeks. It has a strange, amorphous quality to it that doesn’t pin it to any one mood or occasion, instead flowing easily in and around my other perfumes, filling up the gaps with its easy-going personality.

Now that I don’t have any left, I miss it. I find myself thinking about it at off hours of the day. It’s probably just a passing infatuation, so I’ll try to wait it out. Trouble is, despite me thinking, meh, this isn’t really that unique, I can’t think of a single perfume that could take its place.

29th August, 2017
Sweet, unfussy, middleweight fruity-floral; clearly of good quality, well put-together, original and definintely unisex, decent performance.

Bright and luscious opening of bergamot and blackcurrant - sweet, but not overpoweringly so, rich and mouth-wateringly juicy in texture. The violet-jasmine heart retains a citrus edge and dries down with a velvety musk to a gorgeous creamy wood and vetiver base, still finishing slightly sweet.

I found this fragrance to be just as much about texture as scent. At the risk of spewing purple nonsense, it feels somehow precise, but unfettered - simple, I guess, despite a relatively complex pyramid; it feels straightforward. Are Byredo Scandi? It feels Scandi. EDIT - turns out they kind of are, so I'll leave that there as it might make sense to someone!

I really like the composition - like a good piece of music, there's space in it for the notes to sing. It's the first Byredo I've experienced and I'm impressed by it. I've ordered a larger decant already - I'm pretty sure there'll be a FB of this in my cupboard before much longer.
03rd April, 2017 (last edited: 17th April, 2017)
Seated Woman In Violet Stockings - EGON SCHIELE
26th October, 2016
For the life of me, I can't see why this is labeled a warm weather option OR feminine. This is unisex in my opinion. Warm weather with this....better suited for the fall. The notes here are Bergamot,Lemon,Violet and Black amber with some Vetiver. That gives this a warm and toasty projection almost like a caramel apple. That sounds like something you'd enjoy in the fall to me.

As with any Byredo product- it's top notch. This isn't like what you'll find anywhere else. It's unique.

I could rant and rave, but in the end once you smell it you're going to get it. Case closed.
17th October, 2016
This is indeed a very nice scent and reminds me of Oliver Peoples,it shares a lot with Bal d’Afrique and some notes are amped up in Oliver Peoples so both are slightly different and like them both a lot.So if you like this one you will like Oliver Peoples for sure....
26th July, 2016

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