The initial blast is marvelous - a light tuberose, jasmine, rose floral with a strong warm base of sandalwood, vanilla, musk, cardamom and amber. I sampled the vintage edp.
Unfortunately, on me it lasts no more than a half hour before needing re-application. Other than that, it's a very nice floral oriental.
If only the strength of that initial blast had lasted over hours, like the power of Madame Rochas, it might have been higher up in my esteem.
Byzance opens soapy, aldehydic and with a big perfumey blast that characterizes olfactory decade of the 80’s with an obvious wink towards the floral aldehydes of the 20’s. A big tuberose comes through right away with a heady bitter-sweetness and a touch of greens. Underlining base notes of musk and amber make themselves immediately apparent as well. And a spicy yet balsamic warmth of cardamom makes for a slightly exotic opening. It settles into a green yet sweet tuberose for quite some time. The dry down reveals more of the woods as well as vanilla, and sweet berry-like undertones which reminds me of the final dryout of Ivoire. And there is always a sense of sweetness about it – although not as overbearing as the first few moments.
Byzance interestingly has some characteristics of a chypre (perhaps the juxtaposition of potent florals with greens creates that illusion), but it is not. It is a flamboyant, outgoing floriental.
I am still trying ot figure out what is the connection to the name though. It does not smell particularly typical of the region or the religious connotations of the Eastern Church. The bottle design is the only point of reference I can see (the circle being reminiscent of that found inside the basilicas in Turkey). It also reminds me of the bottle design of Soir de Paris.
A sweet, soapy, musky floral. I do not get a lot of vanilla or spice, just a lot of musk and flowers. Perhaps a little smoky or incensy. I like the overall effect, but it's not for me.
17th May, 2009 (last edited: 31st July, 2009)
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Like "takemyhusbandplz" (great name, by the way), I love Byzance's packaging and opening fragrance notes -- but the drydown is musty on me as well. I have a friend on whom this melts down into a scrumptious vanilla/incensy accord, and I was hopeful it would do the same on me. Oh well.
Byzance comes in a pretty little cobalt blue bottle with gold lettering. Oh, how I wish the first stage of Byzance lasted- a perfect combination of citrus, vanilla, musk, and white floral notes of jasmine and lily of the valley. After wearing Byzance for 10 minutes the musk overtakes every other note and to me smells like a musty wet chalkboard. Some types of musk always turn on me I'm afraid. I will give this a neutral because on the right person this would be very elegant and sexy.