Perfume Reviews

Negative Reviews of Rien by Etat Libre d'Orange

Total Reviews: 10
First smell of Rien and I for a moment thought I would like it. Out of the bottle and onto the skin, a different story unfolded. Based on the notes listed, this one should be right up my alley...however it took a different turn.

While sitting on the sofa after wearing Rien for about an husband asked me if the cat peed in the room or if the cat box needed to be cleaned. I said he hadn't and I had just emptied and refilled the litter box with fresh litter earlier that morning. He left the room and walked in again and asked if one of the boys had accidentally peed in the room or hid their wet clothing (as one not quite totally toilet trained child of our is apt to do - hide the accidental incidents). After looking around the room for the potential source, he stated it was me and didn't realize it until he got close to me. I thought it might have been my clothing or who else know.

Yes, I smelled like pee thanks to Rien. I figured I might as well ride out the storm and see where the fragrance would take me. After a few hours the urine smell did finally diminish and instead was taken over know how around mid-January when you finally decide to take down the once-live Christmas tree and it still has the faint tree sap residue with a slight tinge of mildew...that where Rien decided to leave itself for the remainder of the ride.

Strangely other Etat fragrances I've quite like, not passionately, but admire them for their qualities even if they aren't for me, such as Fat Electrician. Most of the Etat range I've tested has short longevity on my skin, but not Rien....Rien defends it's territory, sinks its teeth into my skin and refuses to let go. I'll give it kudos at least for that as it is the only admirable quality about it.
22nd April, 2017
As a fan of leather fragrances I feel this one is animalic in all the wrong ways. And though I enjoy animalic leathers like Cuir d'arabie and leather oud, this one is animalic in the sense of stale cat urine, that sharp, sweaty, "grey" smell that is quite unlike human urine. Those unfamiliar with the smell would never guess it's origins and it makes me wonder whether the perfumer has spent any time in close proximity to cats. Unfortunately my wife knows the smell too well and was horrified by this fragrance. Of course there is more going on than this central accord, but in the end this is all that attired to me. Glad I sampled first.
19th May, 2016
Tony T Show all reviews
United States
very distinct and charesmatic, just not for me. smells of leather and oakmoss is very overwhelming. a definate powerhouse with great longevity but not modern.the aldehydes and patchouli remain as dark as can be.i just sold my decant on ebay after testing once again. not a very likable scent for the under 40 crowd. maybe a good scent to wear to a funeral or something dark and gloomy.
06th May, 2013
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Very odd.
The opening is dry, but really strange. Hint of pepper but mainly a piercing, industrial note like glue, solvent or hot light bulbs. A woody-spice note in an quirky mutant, sci-fi vein. Hot plastic, volatile glue... really not my scene.
09th December, 2012
It's a real scrubber for me, I'm afraid. A nasty mix of cracked Styrax and Birch Tar. If you want to smell like a cold, unraked fireplace this one is for you. Unfortunately it is very strong and very long lasting.
07th March, 2012
Elzéard Show all reviews
United Kingdom
One spray on my wrist was far too much. In fact, it gave me a headache. To me it seemed like a much less refined Knize Ten (which I must say is brilliant). Twice the volume, but no control or balance. Smelling this on my wrist gave a similar feeling to glancing at an incredibly bright light, after just waking up with tired and sensitve eyes.
27th December, 2011
Throwing. Up.

This one was painful. Seeing the look on my face, my girlfriend asked who died and, before I could tell her about the untimely passing of my nasal passages, well, I won't disgust you with the rest. But I didn't like it much. Pretend your chemistry professor invited you over for dinner but accidentally transposed pot and beaker, and that dinner's surprise guest was the local mortician. Yeah, it smells like that. All aldehyde and embalming fluid and industrial disgust, with not a redeeming feature to be found. I'd be remiss if I didn't mention that it develops, but in this case the development is like crawling from the primordial ooze of its laboratory beginnings to the bottom of someone's shoe in the locker room.
27th February, 2011 (last edited: 14th April, 2011)
Ugh. Talk all you want about leather, styrax, cedar, incense, and rose, but the net effect is of a toddler's diaper saturated with pee and having needed changing for several hours...perhaps with a slightly woody edge. This is the most explicitly urinous fragrance I have tried.

I'm afraid I can't speak to the drydown as I couldn't make it past the 20 minute mark.
23rd January, 2010
I must be missing something here. Something I'm just incapable of sensing, surely? All I get is this weird, completely synthetic smelling approximation of leather. Like an overbearing, fake "new car" smell or the way pleather jackets would smell if they could. There is absolutely no sweetness, no incense, no spices, nothing else to my nose. Just fake leather overdone to the maximum. After 30 minutes I wanted this to just go away. My wife said it was nice and reviewers I trust often give it glowing reviews so I can only assume I'm missing all the nice aspects of this fragrance. As it is, it isn't unbearable but it just seems utterly pointless. A huge disappointment for me. Thumbs Down just because I would never wear this again.
26th August, 2009
Rien, aka "Dorian Gray" is the last scent in my Etat Libre d'Orange Smell-A-Thon and I am getting weary of their nonsensical marketing material. Here is an extract from their description of "Rien": "Rien is a second skin perfume, a perfume that clings to the body and perseveres in the mind. Like venial sin on the verge of becoming mortal, irresistable and resolutely pervasive". Whatever.

In case you are wondering what this smells like in plain English, and despite the laundry list of official notes below, Rien smells like loose body powder for ladies, ie. the kind that comes with a powder puff. I sniffed it all the way to the end and the whole time it smelled like uninteresting body powder that Estee Lauder might have produced in the 1950's. I could tell that they added aldehydes to try and give it a sense of luxuriousness but that was overpowered by the strong smell of powder.

Similar to Dorian Gray but far outclassing it in terms of complexity and beauty is Le Labo's Aldehyde 44 and Chanel No. 5.

Here are the notes, courtesy of The Perfumed Court: incense, rose, leather, iris, ciste, foam chene, styrax pyrogene, patchouli, amber, cumin, black pepper and aldehydes.
28th July, 2008