Perfume Reviews

Reviews of Hermèssence Brin de Réglisse by Hermès

Total Reviews: 17
Brin De Reglisse is probably the most blatant example of why I consider several *Hermessences* to be frustrating experiences. The composition is centered around a great bone accord made out of lavender and licorice. The synergy between the two gives birth to something extremely novel, refreshing and modern. On one side the aromatic and sharp-ish qualities of lavender. On the other the dark, bittersweet facets of licorice. Simple, yes, but absolutely perfect. It masterfully avoids the heaviness often associated with licorice fragrances (see Eau Noir), it's never too sweet, never too sharp (see Lolita Lempicka), anything but functional but, in the end, really too thin.

I'm not obsessed with longevity and I obviously wasn't expecting Hermessence to deliver in sillage but on skin this disappears after a couple of hours leaving the wearer with an incredible sense of frustration (unless you literally stick your nose to your wrist). It basically performs like the weakest Eau De Cologne and it should be re-applied constantly just to achieve an almost ghost-like presence. At these prices, this is honestly too much.

Pity because I really love the main accord but beside that, Brin De Reglisse feels more like an expensive joke.

28th October, 2014
Wonderful authentic, dry, rich burst of Lavender in the opening, full of unmistakable quality... followed by a juicy liquorice note. Very well made.

Brin de Réglisse is Jean-Claude Ellena's take on Lavender, and for this he chose Liquorice - another note which has some olfactive similarities to the herb (he also managed a similar choice of combination with Vétiver Tonka). It's dry, almost caramel like quality pairs with the deep lavender to give a very rich, authentic feel... like standing in a lavender field in summer eating liquorice. The hay is also a wonderful choice here, which really evokes the natural and dry, herbal feel of this fragrance.

I also suspect there may be other notes at play here such as immortelle, with a dry, burnt-sugar and herbal feel, or maybe a hint of vanilla and orange blossom. Either way, Brin de Réglisse has one of the best lavender and liquorice notes in any perfume I've tried. It's transparent, as is Ellena's style. But, much like Vétiver Tonka, although I do like the combination... there are better interpretations of lavender and liquorice in other perfumes out there. Dior's Eau Noire comes to mind, which smells much more authentic than this (it's also a lavender liquorice combo). Overall I do really like this one, I just wished it gave me a little more.
03rd July, 2014
Genre: Floral

Brin de Réglisse goes on with a really lovely savory-salty accord of black licorice and lavender. Contrary to my expectations, it does not then settle into the sharp, synthetic woody accord that anchors so many of Jean-Claude Elléna’s previous scents. Happily, this means that after twenty minutes it doesn’t wind up smelling exactly like Un Jardin sur la Nil, Un Jardin en Méditerranée, or Terre d’Hermès. Sadly, it also means that after twenty minutes Brin de Réglisse winds up smelling like nothing at all.

15th June, 2014
Advertisement — Reviews continue below

Quiet lavender meets fleeting licorice

An innovative and attractive combination of savory and aromatic elements, Brin de Réglisse juxtaposes a grassy hay-like lavender base with dynamic top notes of black licorice. Despite the name, the main ingredient here is the lavender which has been modified to become very clean and smooth, containing none of lavender’s distinct herbal or medicinal aspects. Although beautiful as a stylized representation of the natural note, the lavender in Brin de Réglisse has been so excessively tamed and civilized that most of its character is gone, making it too anonymous and transparent to create a truly lasting impression, especially as it meets little constructive opposition from its licorice counterpart. While delicious and very natural-smelling, the licorice note is present, literally, for only a few minutes and dissolves far too quickly, leaving the lavender alone and overly docile with its natural teeth and claws removed.

While Brin de Réglisse is undeniably elegant and conceptually intriguing, it is also too soft-spoken and insubstantial, especially as a very expensive and exclusive Hermèssence fragrance. It performs like an eau de cologne and would be far more at home in the excellent (and significantly cheaper) Hermès cologne selection, relaunched in a pale violet bottle and renamed "Eau de Lavande Stylisée". Given its unsatisfactory performance and unjustifiable price point for what it is, I have to rate Brin de Réglisse below four stars. While I enjoy the fragrance and find it both very pleasant and easy to wear, I’m slightly bothered with the way it whimsically tries to trade character and substance for intangible hints, suggestions, and mannerism.

18th October, 2013
Honestly, this just smells strange to me. It's a very traditional lavender-heavy fougere like Pour Un Homme, complete with the poopy tonka and vanilla and everything, but overlaid with a strong salty licorice note.

The end result is just odd. You can smell the lavender and you can smell the licorice, but they create a strange synergy that really does just smell weird. It's salty and kind of bready, but a weird dried brown bread smell like melba toast. There's sort of a liqueur vibe to it, but it's so herbal and dry that it never really smells like a drink.

Honestly, I don't really like the smell. But it's sure an interesting idea and something I haven't experienced elsewhere, so points for creativity earn a neutral rating instead of a thumbs down.
24th April, 2013
I must disclose that I love licorice and always have since I was a little boy.
This makes Brin de Reglisse easy for me to like because it is very close to the way a stick of licorice smells.
It is light, with the lavender merging with the collective notes to provide the illusion of Bassets Spanish style hard licorice. The type I used to buy from a local corner shop 35 years ago.
It is not sweet or cloying, it is masculine and formal. Inoffensive and subtle.
It is not anything like Lolita Lempicka's offerings, which are stronger and smell synthetic in comparison.
So if you like the way licorice used to smell and are partial to very well made scent then I recommend you try Brin de Reglisse. Spray part of it on clothes to extend the drydown.
I spray once for each side of the neck with part of each spray landing on my shirt collar. Perfect. I don't ever want to run out of it.
15th February, 2013
Starts with a blast of licorice. Then I detect lavender with herbal accents. The licorice fades and what remains feels rather austere. Nothing I would wear myself, but may merit consideration for licorice-lavender lovers.
26th January, 2012
bokaba Show all reviews
United States
Brin de Réglisse is quite nice but still largely disappointing. I think it lives up to its name as a "strand of licorice" quite well. I'd prefer a stronger lavender component and more emphasis on a fougere structure featuring some of the other interesting notes like hay, vanilla, leather, and orange blossom. All I get is a big blast of licorice--don't get me wrong, it is a blast of perfect licorice if you will, but it never goes beyond that demarcation. I must commend Hermes though for not venturing into the super-sweet realm as so many fated anise and licorice fragrances often do. I'd suggest trying it first as it is hard to find and commands a pretty penny at Hermes boutiques worldwide.
28th April, 2011
From the Hermessence line, Brin de Reglisse is one that sounds the most compact and simple. But this one works because that the simplicity here is centered around too biggest notes, lavender and anis. If Caron Pour Un Homme works like a dance of lavender and vanilla, this one changes lavender`s pair and put it to be conducted by the spicy and dark aroma of anis. The note gets very close of something which is dark-sugary and bitter at the same time, and it works very well combined with the aromatic aroma of lavender, that stripped down of the caramelic and medicinal tones provides a more herbal, green aspect to the note. One curiosity about Brin de Reglisse is that, before the launching, Hermes used a similar formula to give Hermes George V to person which were invited to the reopening of their french George V Store. George V is the opposite twin of Brin de Reglisse, with the lavender more in focus than the anise and showing a more fresh aroma, almost tea-like, with a discreet caramelic note. Both interesting fragrances, but in the end i prefer George V for the relaxed aura it exhales.
21st January, 2011
Notes: lavender, licorice, orange blossom, hay, incense, vanilla, leather.
A disappointment for two reasons: the short duration of the interesting notes, and the wimpy conclusion of the scent. The scent boasts “designer” lavender molecules, and they are very good. They are dry, aromatic, dusty, even a bit dusky – exactly what I like in lavender. The licorice is creamy and yet dark, attractive without any particular sweetness. POOF! These notes vanish abruptly. One is left with a toasty-nutty hay smell which morphs into a soft, slightly sweet leather scent. I guess leather is the signature Hermes element but there’s really nothing else here. And that little scent lingers for a while. With a hint of vanilla it is almost gourmand. I’ll give it a neutral rating for the interesting opening.
08th December, 2010

The notes in the opening of Brin de Réglisse form an unusual and interesting accord. The lavender is much more herbal than floral, which is the way I prefer lavender, and the licorice fits well with this particular lavender note because they are augmented with a salty note that adds more interest. I’m not highly enamored of the accord and I think I would tire of it if I smelled it for more than a few hours, but I do find it interesting and unique. Nothing more seems to happen with this fragrance besides this salty herbal accord. Then, it is gone in a all too quickly. It’s an ok scent, but the terrible longevity is unacceptable.
28th November, 2010
I get a very strong black licorice note in the opening accompanied by a boatload of herbs and some pepper. The lavender kicks in after some of the herbs diminish, which isn't for a good hour or so. Although it seems very strong when you smell it up on the skin, it actually didn't project very much for me, especially when comparing to others from this line. The dry down is more or less the same as Paprika Brasil's only less enjoyable and more dull. I do get anywhere from 6-8 hours longevity, however it's very very dull for more than half of those hours. This one is just so&so to me, I might buy it if it were 90% off :D
21st August, 2010
Other than celery and lavender, there's really not much going on around this creation except smelling like money for the first 30 minutes. And when I say money, I do not mean smelling like a rich person but literallly smelling like any legal tender it doesn't matter what denomination or what currency. One can test this by spraying the cologne on one's wrist and then pulling out money from your pocket...then compare the smell. The lavender note is mild and not perfumey which is a plus but this is way too pricey for something that doesn't last more than 2 hours. You will get the same effect with a dash of Johnson's baby powder.
17th May, 2010
Advertisement — Reviews continue below

Brin de Reglisse, a lavender/licorice scent that is part of the Hermessence Series of boutique exclusive scents by Hermes sadly suffers from shockingly low longevity.

The scent: I LOVE IT.

The lavender (reputed to have been dissected by the perfumer Jean Claude Ellena into an entirely different molecule minus a few notes) is fantastic and extremely vegetal. For those who do not like the smell of celery - steer clear of BdR, because you can smell this almost immediately upon application (I found it extremely comfortable). The flat and starchy lavender then highlights the oncoming licorice notes just right. The black licorice is not gourmand (like Yohji Homme) and not anise-oriented ( many mens fragrances...the new Diesel comes to mind immediately) but licorice in all its pastel, chewy aroma.

In the middle notes I detected a slight confectionery note that reminded me of white chocolate. It strikes that yin/yang between the dry herbal note and that sweet candy note. I got absolutely no orange blossom. I think I might have smelled the hay note, but my nose is sometimes anosmic to hay so I can't be certain. And disappeared in about 1 hour. The next time I wore it I intentionally over applied - I think I sprayed it 20 times (no kidding). It lasted about 2 hours. Then, in the same fashion, it completely disappeared from my skin. I tried it at night, at the end of the day. Same thing.

I would like to look past this and recommend this scent - but based upon the price (Hermessence scents are luxury priced) and the fact that other more affordable Hermes scents (Kelly Caleche, for instance) aren't burdened by such issues, I cannot.
03rd October, 2008
I knew something was special about this on on my skin so I tried it a few times. I found that I liked it more and more.
First application: dry lavender. didn't go anywhere, set it aside to tyr again
Second application: dry lavender and citrus with licorice, something seems to be creeping up
Third application: a licorice note that transcends the dry lavender note into a green herbal puff of dry and spicy vanilla that is pleasant and lingers making this a lavender gourmand
30th September, 2008
If you believe in heaven, this is the key....
16th May, 2008
Brin de Réglisse is not necessarily a dry lavender as seems to be the consensus in most media mentioning the scent. Rather, it plays up the richness of lavender, which can be more easily found with the absolute or concrete distillation: herbaceous yet sweet, green yet smooth – Brin de Réglisse renders a velvety gourmand lavender, likened to a lavender-flavoured chocolate. The licorice note, apparent right from the start is reminiscent of tarragon, with it’s off-beat, awkwardly green sweetness, which seamlessly complements the lavender paste. It is further deepened by deep cocoa and dark coumarin sweetness with a gourmand intensity that is more vanillic than hay-like. And than, after less than two hours of wear, it practically disappears… So unfortunately, while I find the concept of Brin de Réglisse just as surprising and original as Vetiver Tonka (a vetiver that stands out among the over-populated crowd of scents of that theme), Vetiver Tonka remains my favourite Hermèssence for both its originality and lasting power.
12th November, 2007