Perfume Directory

Soul (2015)
by Costume National


Soul information

Year of Launch2015
GenderShared / Unisex
AvailabilityIn Production
Average Rating
(based on 17 votes)

People and companies

HouseCostume National
Parent CompanyBeauty San Spa

About Soul

Soul is a shared / unisex perfume by Costume National. The scent was launched in 2015

Soul fragrance notes

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

Reviews of Soul

I am extremely shocked that "Costume National Soul" is not being talked about much more within the fragrance community? I am also extremely shocked that few have mentioned the huge resemblance to the highly sought after discontinued Yves Saint Laurent fragrance M7 & it's re-edition M7 Oud Absolu.. Soul may not be an exact clone of M7 or M7 Oud Absolu but in my opinion is very similar! I definitely think that Ropion was inspired by M7 in his development of "Soul"!
This juice is ridiculously delicious... Spicy, dark, leathery, a little bit of incense, resinous Amber, and ends with with the leather, vanilla and patchouli....this juice is phenomenal....I feel like it's more on the masculine side of unisex, but I can see why women would like it, because it just smells so damn good... Mysterious, mature, sexy, confident... Not a daytime work scent... A night out scent for sure.
02nd July, 2017
There's a little bit of M7 going on here, a little bit of Scent Intense, but mostly an Interlude vibe in my opinion. If you like that candy smell of Interlude or Roja's Sweetie Aoud, which I do, you will definitely love this! To make things even better, I get a touch of Ellena's Bois Farine that brings it all together in a masterful way that only Ropion, one of my favorite perfumers of all time, could do. Pick some of this up if you get a chance.
25th April, 2017
This new addition to Costume National’s fragrances range represents the unnecessary confirmation that the only good Costume National scents ever made where the early couple of ones composed by Bruyère – 21 and Scent Intense. It almost seems the guys at Costume National share this feeling as well, since Soul smells basically like an unneeded rewriting of Scent Intense crossed with influences from some of those contemporary Middle East cheap brands which are quite invading the market lately – brands like Arabian Oud, Lattafa, Swiss Arabian and countless of similar ones, with their nuclear, and often sweetish spicy-smoky oud and/or leather blends. Soul is for me exactly halfway all of that, and I wonder why they hired some renowned nose like Ropion for such an uninspired, clerical copy-and-paste job. Soul definitely keeps Scent Intense’s peculiar bone structure of powerful, sort of dry and extremely synthetic amber-musk-fruity notes, and boringly crosses it with a smoky praline of vanilla and artificial, sort of medicinal-nutty oud with a dark shade of leathery patchouli and a greyish salty feel of ambergris. The result is basically “Scent Intense Oud & Patchouli” with a whiff of M7’s trademark ambery-medicinal oud.

Is it any good? Well, sort of. If you like Scent Intense, then that’s still way above this, as it smells richer, more quality and more fascinatingly complex, and also kind of more focused; if you don’t care for it, then Soul may be a slightly more peculiar than usual sort of “futuristic”, androgynous, dirty yet sort of “aseptic” take on oud and synthetic leather with an initially stomach-piercing galore of powdery-musky vanilla tinged with a nondescript candy vibe. A powerful sweetish musky candy with a drop of cheap smoky oud & patchouli, and an everlasting artificial and linear drydown... sounds familiar, eh? Nothing that probably some Middle Eastern drugstore brand isn’t already doing for ten dollars a bottle. Not abysmal, but go for Scent Intense anyway.

14th November, 2015
A dirty caramellous spicy mélange whose diabolisms is really hard to cope with. This Dominique Ropion's woody-oriental (appointed in a sort of Serge Lutens' style) is rich of precious woods, tobacco-vanille, old-leather aroma and oriental spices overall kind of "arabesque" and seasoned, a juice teleporting the wearer in the coziest/classiest of aristocratic "cultured" heavily woody/leathery ambiences. Costume National Soul is an almost visceral take on resinous amber, an hellish "taste" capturing helplessly your senses and their all at once submissive self-control. This main synthetic note appears in here sugary-resinous (caramellous spices, woodsy resins, honey), more than barely smokey (actually more properly oriented towards tobacco, a smoky-sugary take on amber/tobacco), vaguely boozy (kind of exotic rum-infused), minimally leathery (velvet vanillic leather), notable in smooth sandalwood presence and rooty bold. The main accord of dark amber, patchouli and fur-like leather is close to the Costume National Scent Intense's dominant chord (in its deep dry down), both the juices are indeed definitely darkly glamour and velvet-chic but, while the latter is misty, dandy and enigmatic, Soul smells more rounded, rural, "cozy atmosphere eliciting" and kind of seasoned, actually like something such of more intellectual and "cozy-ambience unfolding". Scent Intense is more earthy, mastered by dark patchouli, more floral-suede "infused", a less sweet noir-urban aroma basically more balanced by a mitigating crisp tea-note, on the contrary Soul is more burnt sugary-spicy and fruity (kind of peachy/plummy honeyed-resinous).
Both introduce this sort of dirty "sweated", ostensibly organic, salty-ammoniacal amber-resin which is in Scent Intense anyway tempered by a liquid tea note, kind of "well trimmed-metrosexual" while appearing in here wilder, more soulful and "drinkable". Both the aforementioned Costume National's creations are resinous (slightly incensey and smokey) takes on sticky synthetic amber but while Soul smells finally more properly resinous (and dense) Scent Intense (despite leather is not listed in its recipe unlike what we get in Soul) smells basically more leathery (or better fur's aroma-conjuring while Soul is finally just a tad traditionally leathery-vanillic), more crispy and floral-lush (a rosey in aroma mother pearl of hibiscus). Scents as Idole de Lubin Eau de Parfum (the exotic spiciness), Serge Lutens Arabie (the fruity-spicy-resinous opulent orientalism), Ysl M7 Oud Absolu (the resinous-mossy take on dark patchouli), Miller Harris La Fumee (its rounded-seasoned sticky fruitiness) and the substantially diverse Roja Dove Fetish Pour Homme (with its luxurious take on animalic-leathery amber) jump partially on mind each of them for several individual characteristics. Soul opens with a gorgeous blast of glorious bergamot, rum-conjuring wet/honeyed spice and resins. Cardamom, joined to hesperides and dry pepper, provides a sort of fluidy-simil boozy initial atmosphere extremely exotic, smoky tropical and kind of latin. Late top stage and central more massive core are really capturing for their almost gourmandish and sweet (spices, vanilla, dried fruits) warm-sweet-honeyed qualities. CN Soul's dry down is simply hyper sexy, warm, spicy, salty-ambery, tobacco-veined, candied-resinous (incensey-oudhish-vanillic) and charismatic. Amber is in this phase drier, sticky and dirty-salty, this is actually a quality (never a shortcoming) in my humble olfactory vocabulary. Finally leather emerges ones amber goes taming down its stickiness (late trail) and a softer leather-vanilla chord peeps out through the clouds. If you are looking for something draging, stimulating senses, intellectually erotic and intensely penetrating you will not go wrong with this mixture, ideal for histrionic sensualists probably more arrogantly daring than apologetically soulful.
16th October, 2015 (last edited: 20th November, 2015)
drseid Show all reviews
United States
Soul opens with moderately sweet vanilla infused black pepper spice. Moving to the early heart the composition remains moderately sweet as cardamom joins the black pepper to support an emerging synthetic Oud accord that takes on the starring role, with traces of relatively sanitized patchouli and rough leather joining in subtle additional support. During the late dry-down the sweetness fades while remaining in modest fashion as a salty ambergris accord takes control of the composition with the sanitized patchouli remaining in support through the finish. Projection is average to slightly above average and longevity very good at about 10-11 hours on skin.

When I initially heard about Soul I really didn't know what to think. On the one hand, it is by Costume National, a brand that has produced some really great compositions previously, this one composed by my favorite nose Dominique Ropion. On the other hand, the last few Costume National releases were disappointing, and the published notes list looked uninspired. It was time to give the stuff a sniff to see if Ropion could work his magic on a brief that most likely would not have been his first choice... Unfortunately, one of the first things I noticed when Soul was applied on skin is the significant sweetness level. This sweetness comes from the vanilla in the base, but it permeates every aspect of the composition's development and not really in a good way. At least the early relatively sweet vanilla is not powdery, as that would have been the death knell early-on. Countering the unwanted sweetness is a pretty decent implementation of synthetic Oud. This stuff will not fool anyone who has smelled the real thing that it is not a synthetic concoction, but Ropion to his credit utilizes the faux Oud in a way that it blends pretty well into the spices and patchouli, never calling too much attention to itself even though it is the star for most of the composition's development. The most disappointing part of that development, however, comes during the late dry-down as salty and slightly musky ambergris takes over from the faux Oud as star, with the vanilla eschewing some of its sweetness, swapping it for a subtle dry powdery sheen late. All in all Soul does smell good, but somewhat ironically, apart from its note list being unimpressive it comes off as soulless. My guess is Ropion really didn't enjoy composing this one. The bottom line is the $150 per 100ml bottle Soul is lacking precisely that despite still smelling good, earning it a "good" 3 star out of 5 rating and a hesitant recommendation.
30th June, 2015

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