Perfume Directory

Bel Ami Vetiver (2013)
by Hermès


Bel Ami Vetiver information

Year of Launch2013
AvailabilityIn Production
Average Rating
(based on 102 votes)

People and companies

PerfumerJean-Claude Ellena

About Bel Ami Vetiver

Bel Ami Vetiver is a masculine fragrance by Hermès. The scent was launched in 2013 and the fragrance was created by perfumer Jean-Claude Ellena

Bel Ami Vetiver fragrance notes

  1. Top Notes
  2. Heart Notes
  3. Base notes

Reviews of Bel Ami Vetiver

By all accounts, Jean-Claude Ellena has pulled off a very simple trick in designing Bel Ami Vetiver. In an attempt to update the original Bel Ami to give it a more contemporary feel, the patchouli base note is replaced with the eponymous vetiver wood. As far as I am concerned, it works like a dream. There is the same glow of a small handful of notes brought together with care and craft. In actual fact BAV doesn't develop much and has at best average performance - those things we normally look for as criteria in judging a fragrance - but for me it's a bit like Puskas' left foot. When the one trick it pulls is this good, you don't end up wishing for anything else. Leather, smoky vetiver, and a touch of citrus in one elegant, understated, and highly sophisticated package. In my book, this has got all the makings of a modern classic. Now, I wonder how Guerlain feel about putting some vetiver in L'Instant pour homme?
02nd February, 2017
Is this a nice quality scent? Yes. Is it the end all be all scent? No. That's the issue I have with this juice. I suppose I expected to much. The longevity and projection IMO are lacking. I find that it does smell of quality construction just doesn't have enough umph to get it over the top. For a leather scent, it is nice... if you can find it in your price range, then go for it. Enjoy!

Update: After a few more wearings I would say this is an exceptional leathery scent. Longevity is in the 6 to 7 hour range for me with 2 sprays. FULL BOTTLE WORTHY!
12th January, 2017 (last edited: 06th February, 2017)
Smells a lot like the 2nd version of Bel Ami. Nice idea, but I think a stronger vetiver note should have been added. Just to similar to the 2nd version IMO. Overall a nice fragrance indeed but if you own the original, I don't feel the need to own the vetiver version. 7.5/10
11th May, 2016

Like the original Bel Ami, Bel Ami Vetiver is leather heavy. To my nose that means that I don’t smell the citrus in the opening and I don’t smell the vetiver – all I smell is leather. It’s a decent leather and I’m sure that true leather lovers will enjoy this scent. I can tell that it is a scent that is constructed beautifully and has excellent quality components. But to me it is rather boring.
07th February, 2016
Lots of leather, amber and sandalwood to my nose. After it settles it reminds me of entering a Hermes Boutique with all its handbags, fine clothing and plush carpeting. I don't get much of the citrus opening and there is not much Vetiver either. The Vetiver seems to be a token effort to capitalise on vetiver's popularity at the time of release. There is a dash of Vetiver but this is not a Vetiver fragrance by any stretch of the imagination.

Excellent performance, subtle but sufficient development. This one grew on me and became one of my favourites on after a full year of ownership. The great fragrances can do this. Their uniqueness shocks and the unfamiliarity is initially uninviting, but once you become comfortable with what to expect it is a very comforting and luxurious scent.
02nd February, 2016
So finally I was able to try this flanker of the glorious Bel Ami. I never cared to approach the current version of this timeless masterpiece, I only know and love the vintage one (not a matter of snobbery; I just like that, and don’t want to cope with disappointments), but the reviews for this Vetiver take were quite good and generally positive, so I was quite sure it would have been a good fragrance. And it totally is, in fact. What I like about Hermès scents, besides their nearly-consistent high quality over the years, is that the name often reflects the content with sharp, no-frills precision (something you wouldn’t take for granted with other brands); and in this case, in fact, you can safely expect Bel Ami with a deeper, richer presence of vetiver. So imagine that smooth, elegant, youthful suede-floral chypre wrapped in smoke with a sort of Oriental, “organic” added value provided by a tremendously pleasant note of fresh, earthy, sweet-salty and totally good quality Haitian vetiver supported by some subtle dusty and exotic sweetness – an accord which reminds me a bit of Vetiver Tonka (and this means also Pal Zileri Viaggio d’Africa). A vetiver accord which will be the true, and nearly only star of the drydown – extremely discreet, but really pleasant.

Bel Ami Vetiver carries and develops Hermès’ trademark sense of understated “luxury” : it feels bright, refined, smoky but somehow clean, feeling natural but also “bourgeois” - not exactly aristocratic, just more of an upper-class distinguished, quiet yet practical elegance. An impeccable suede-vetiver blend on the smooth-fresh side, lasting decently long and projecting just fine (quite discreetly, as most of current Hermès fragrances). Slightly overpriced, but totally bottle worthy if you can get some discount. The only “cons” I would mention are basically two: first, that for some reasons, Bel Ami Vetiver smells a bit restrained, even dangerously tending towards “boring” after a while, and surely not that “unique” if you care about it (and I mean both per se, and if compared to Bel Ami); and second, well... I can’t help it: if you really love perfumes, for the same money of a 100 ml bottle of this, you can probably get a 50 ml bottle of vintage Bel Ami. Half the size, but all considered, double the joy. Nonetheless I don’t really want to play the “vintage nazi” card, since this is not even Bel Ami but a new, specific different version of it. So judging the fragrance per se, my opinion is that for nowadays’s depressing market, Bel Ami Vetiver is a solid win.

22nd September, 2015

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