On my cold and dry skin Chambre Noire doesn't follow the note-pyramid order.
It opens with sweet plum, accompanied by sandalwood. This stage reminds me of Bois et Fruits by SL for example. My personal taste is definitely not met here.
After a while the papyrus and pepper notes appear, the patchouli and cold incense sit quietly, I'm also getting cloves. Moist and damp papyrus can be very appealing to me (Private Label Jovoy). This one is bland though, it has no charisma.
After several hours the perfume becomes even sweeter, to me it's more ambery than vanilla based. I get even cinnamon and something like cognac.
I was most looking forward to the leather and powdery notes many reviewers are mentioning. On me the leather doesn't become alive, I wouldn't call it leathery. The base is not powdery to my nose, but I can see why it could be described as sweet powder.
To sum it up: loud fruity sandalwood at first, then a rougher papyrus intermezzo that slowly merges into an amber patchouli base. A fruity woody oriental.
The perfume construct is somehow static and quiet, despite the transitions. It reminds me of a shy person, that finally decides to go somewhere out of his comfort zone- but then doesn't know what to do with himself and all he can think of is how to get back home, into the static surrounding he is familliar with. Writing this, I realised it (conceptually) makes sense again, especially after I searched for the inspirational photo- as it did with Lumiere Blanche. It's the Chambre Noire of an introvert, where all the actions are the inner projections, not the outer happening.
Longevity is good again, sillage is relatively low.
I don't understand how people smell anything romantic about this fragrance. All I smell is play-doe and powder. No leather; no vanilla; no incense. I've tested this in several scenarios and every time it was the same outcome. Powder! The people of the opposite sex that smelled it on me recommended that I never wear it again. Not full bottle worthy.
The beginning is beautiful! First few seconds: leather, strong punch of incense surrounded and sweetened by rich amber notes. Second phase..heh... after 2-3 minutes - already going towards the drydown. Fragranced talcum powder – the old-fashioned way, heavily infused with violet strengthen by jasmin. Over the next 2-3 hours the leather will remain far in the background …no incense, no amber but powder, flowers and powder …
Sure, there is some sandalwood, patchouli and even a generous amount of pepper in the background but all remains hidden under a thick layer of powder....
I'm glad Chambre Noir does not last for too long... extremly difficult to wear for someone who does not like violet and powdery scents.
Mmm very seductive. Not a day scent to my mind.
You would either wear this when you were very dressed up. Or not wearing very much at all.
It's all incense and blackberry and musk and another note that I can't quite discern.
It mellows out beautifully.
Definitely one to put on the to buy list.
An interesting, solid scent, nothing too special.
Opens with a slightly odd watery leathery note, soon joined by a dry slightly musty sandalwood accord. I’m not too taken with the top of CN, however at drydown it develops a warming incense (with a slightly ambery direction) that is quite comforting, while the subtle patchouli forms a veil over the whole, softening and filling voids.
There’s an interesting play off between comforting notes contrasted with a slightly murky almost damp presence. It’s not noir, it’s washed out grey greens with earth tones permeating. It’s definitely nice, but it doesn't sing to me. There's something about the damp aspect that doesn't agree with my sensibilities. Solid but doesn't stand out.
Pros: Comforting, interesting.
Cons: Odd watery accord"