Perfume Reviews

Reviews of Midnight in Paris by Van Cleef & Arpels

Total Reviews: 68
We BN'ers love it, but apparently others don't since its discontinued. This is a review on the EDP.

There really isn't much to say, except that this is one the most perfect men's fragrances ever. Make sure you like the note of iris though. Iris can come off smelling "makeupy" and that's what it does here.

This is a blend of 2 already outstanding masterpieces: Bvlgari Black, and Dior Homme. Superbly blended, with a smooth creamy finish. Long lasting, projects enough to turn heads, and sophisticated. This is a confident mature man's fragrance. If you see the EDP, snatch it up, because prices will just keep getting higher.

I just can't express how well blended this is. Along with one of the best dry downs I've ever smelled. It kills everything in performance too.
03rd November, 2017
I've always liked the Van Cleef & Arpels fragrance line and I got really excited reading all of the positive reviews here for 'Midnight in Paris'; so much so that I sought out a bottle of the eau de toilette for my personal collection. The fragrance notes listed above come across as a win, WIN! What could go wrong with this fragrance; especially accompanied with such a great bottle?

Well....I do not get any of these listed notes except for incense. I also detect: Lavender, Black Pepper, Licorice, and a very heavy dose of Vanilla. To me it seems to be missing something? Perhaps a dash of Sandalwood and a splash of Juniper might help? Overall it's a nice scent, but not a great scent. Vaguely familiar as since this has been overdone for years (*see Zut de Schiaparelli). Did VCA approach Oliver Polge and ask for a formula that was ready for the market immediately, because they have this amazing bottle that's waiting? It seems like that's the case, and the fragrance here is an afterthought compared to the packaging.
07th February, 2017
I got it for the bottle, I kept it for the fragrance!
17th November, 2016
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Pleasant and powdery, with good longevity and projection at an excellent price. If you enjoy a sweet, leathery powder scent, this will probably be something you reach for often if its in your wardrobe. Sample if possible before buying, might be too much powder for some. I feel like its missing some smokey tobacco notes or else I would wear this more often. Pretty safe and versatile for most occasions.
17th August, 2016
I read all the reviews and the notes in MIP and I thought it would like the frag. Yes, it was a blind buy. When I first sprayed it on my skin, it was really powdery. Then to my surprise it gave me a headache.

I recently purchased another frag with one note similar to MIP (leather). I thought the note (leather) in the frag would be like smelling a worn-in leather coat. To my nose it smells like very strong, slightly sweet baby powder.

The bottle is really nice! It starts out blue at the top and fades to a orange/ yellow at the bottom; with star constellations on the back.

I would recommend getting a sample and testing it first to see how it reacts to your skin. For me MIP is not a frag I would recommend to others to purchase.
07th August, 2016 (last edited: 14th August, 2016)
ad_scott Show all reviews
United Kingdom
The opening is fresh: lemon, then bergamot and rosemary, then it adjusts to a mild, fruity green tea. 5 minutes later things start to get interesting as the opening notes synthesize with a kind of muted smoky-rubbery note resulting in a harmonious mid. When the dry down initiates, the brightness fades and the darker tones dominate (very well done as it feels like being in Paris around midnight at a bar with a glass of Bourbon.) There's a delicate boozy element at play. Moments later, I experience only the leather, tonka and incense notes which somehow forge a faint vanilla/almond/coffee aroma. I admire this scent, it is smooth, creamy, delicious and comforting. It's a fragrance for the autumn and winter. Sillage and longevity are full-bodied yet mild - stays close to the skin. Bottle is also very nice. All in all a very good fragrance.
22nd April, 2016

Complex and well elaborated fragrance, pleasant to the nose, but still, very sweet and artificial. It is very soothing in the beginning and leaves the dry down to something slithly uncomfortable.
09th April, 2016
A slightly odd experience, this one - starts off for me rather undistinguished with none of the citrus described elsewhere. It opens with and retains the fresh powdery sensation of talc or similar. After a while, something akin to a touch of leather breaks through and brings the journey some coherence. Far from being unpleasant, but I'm not sure what function owning this would fulfil for me.
19th March, 2016
BLUF: Powdery leather is right (to echo a previous reviewer) and it’s awesome! Smoky, rubbery, and powdery. One of the few powdery frags I like, plus the value is phenomenal. Will stay on clothes for weeks. *Review is of EdT

I’m a huge fan of this one. I typically get below average longevity and sillage from most fragrances, but this one is great for me on both fronts.

I don’t get any lemon or citrus on top, at least not in the typical hesperidic format. The opening is a blast of powdery leather. The leather slowly mellows out and you’re left with a very sensual, warm, sweet tonka/powder that I personally love. MiP is another one that I like to wear an hour or so before bed.

Even if you’re opposed to powdery fragrances, get it anyway for the bottle. One of the coolest bottle designs IMO. I bought it blind for that reason, turns out I love the juice too.
04th March, 2016
BoxPred Show all reviews
United Kingdom
Firstly, the bottle is fantastic, probably the finest in my collection and when you consider the quality of what is inside you can get this for an absolute steal.

Secondly, like many I consider MiP a unisex fragrance. It starts off feminine and then dries down into something more masculine which I much prefer. I enjoy wearing it but sometimes have found myself feeling as though it is a bit too feminine on me. Having said that, I often like to run things by my wife as we seem to have quite opposite noses and she certainly judges this to be masculine. It smells very nice but it doesn't excite me as much as some others that I own. I am still not convinced that It matches its name because to me it is lighter and quite floral, not something deep and dark although I will say that It has a certain mysterious quality in the dry down when I get the leathery note coming through. It does offer some uniqueness within my collection and for that I am satisfied. MiP gives me average projection and good longevity.

Overall this is a definite thumbs up. I don't really like to focus on price but for me the fact that you can own this for so little makes it a no brainer.

02nd March, 2016
My Lady ordered this because it is really inexpensive and the bottle is cool. Neither of us thought for a moment it is actually a men's fragrance beforehand. Either way, she tried and enjoyed it, as did I the next day. I would say MiP is decidedly unisex, as evidenced by the fact that it is very nearly the same fragrance as Hermes' 'feminine' release, l'Ambre des Merveilles, right down to the vanilla-incense-leather ending and terrific performance, and l'Ambre came out two years later to decent fanfare. So, where was the love for this smoky gem? I think it's great for anyone at all who is looking for a good smoldering amber.
08th January, 2016
This one is dead in the middle for me... It would be a thumbs down if the dry down didn't cover for the opening. Not sure what it is that I don't like... I like all of the listed elements of the opening but in this combination or formulation it's not working for me. After an hour or so the scent does become smoother and enjoyable.
08th December, 2015
This does smell like Bulgari Black but sweeter. I love all of my Van Cleef scents.
12th November, 2015
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Absolutely love MiP, complex and long lasting with a quality well above the modest price tag.

I'm not someone who's fussy about the right fragrance for the right occasion but for me this is certainly an evening/cooler weather fragrance.

Mysterious and bold... I will certainly replace the bottle once finished.
19th October, 2015
Even seeing numerous prior descriptions didn't prepare me exactly for Midnight in Paris (EDT), but "powdery leather" probably is the best quick-reference descriptor that could be applied to it. In that respect, MIP scores high on uniqueness, since such a boldly unisex take on a men's fragrance usually is in more of a floral direction. The tonka adds some sweetness to an otherwise pungent composition but the powderiness is all-consuming to me. Not even the leather aspect really holds a candle to the styrax/benzoin/incense trio that I believe to be mainly responsible for the powdery vibe, though the note list is considerable longer (I don't get much citrus here, though listed).

I don't love it; I kind of like it, yet some hours in, I remain so puzzled by it that I'm not sure under what circumstances I would wear it. Surely it's preferable for cold weather, but at night? Formal? Date? I don't believe it's flattering enough on me to wear for formal occasions so this would probably remain an odd option to wear casually in cold-weather days or nights. Projection is very strong and longevity is very good, especially at the price (this came to $23 for 100ml on FragranceNet).

Perhaps the EDP takes a different direction but I admit I'm not eager to try it after experiencing the EDT. It's just not my preferred genre of fragrance--perhaps if it were a little sweeter it would come off as more balanced and less offensive. Very interesting and unique composition, though, as far as I'm concerned.

7 out of 10
07th October, 2015
Germ in a bottle!!
I am not experienced picking up notes, but can sense the citrus in the opening and leather in the middle phase..

Longevity is good, I get 7-8 hours, it projects the first few hours moderately..
Once I sprayed this fragrance in the morning and it lasted the usual 8 hours, and at about 9pm I entered the bathroom for a hot shower and from no where I started smelling it again..

Smelling this fragrance I feel the notes are pretty soft, no obvious dominance.. It might do better with strong dominant note..
Smell 9/10
Longevity 7
Projection 5
Overall 9/10 because I love this fragrance so much..
17th July, 2015

A man's scent for the ladies to enjoy.MIDNIGHT in PARIS EDP will intoxicate even the most discriminant females sense of smell, she'll definitely remember you long after you're finished with your date.It is not an ovepowering scent,just enough to get the female hormones raging.a man wearing the fragrance shows that he knows what he wants in life,and knows exactly how to get it. Warm,Romantic,Magnetic,Smoky,Sweet and Charming.

The fresh and sweet scent of amalfi lemon,bergamot and rosemary over leathery notes and inviting benzoin,tonka bean, incense and something like vanilla for an edgy and sophisticated perfume who it has the ability to mix with female chemistry and blend superbly with the flowery notes.This EDP might be the perfect scent for a cold winter gives you feel great during parties.the bottle looks cute. anyway a great scent for a cheap price.try it,you will not be disappointed.


Longevity?Very Good on my skin(EDP).

29th May, 2015
I cannot fathom how anyone would think this smells like 'lemon bug spray'. Boggles my mind, truly.

This is one of the most pleasant smelling colognes I've laid nose on. Not everyone might enjoy the smell of a woman's makeup bag, but I do and I have no problem smelling like that all day every day.

Soft, warm, sweet, powdery, gives off that vanilla essence due to the tonka bean I guess. Comforting and relaxed. Just perfect.

Also, the best projection of my entire collection so far. I bought most of my collection due to good reviews but none of them project very well at all. I can smell this one on my arms while sitting at my desk or driving hours after applying it.
28th March, 2015 (last edited: 02nd April, 2015)
I have to agree with all those reviewers that consider MiP VC&A somewhat feminine. As it dries down it becomes more leathery and masculine but there is a persisting sweetness that prevents it to become fully masculine.
But it is a nice scent regardless
27th March, 2015
Bought a 4.2 oz of this one for under $30 shipped. And with rumors of discontinuation floating around for a fragrance this good, I have to say: If you like powdery men's orientals, buy this. NOW.

Personally, I think this fragrance is a true masculine sister scent to Guerlain's legendary Shalimar. (Habit Rouge just never cut it for me.) The vanillic musky incense drydown, the citrus at the top, and the leather all give it a Shalimar vibe without some of the more feminine aspects of Shalimar. Some similarities to Bvlgari Black are apparent in the topnotes, but without the screechy rubber that makes the Bvlgari only wearable if you're in the automotive or auto part manufacturing professions.

Note: this review is for the EdT. And with longevity and sillage as good as it is, I see no reason to buy the EdP.
27th March, 2015
Someone said this is a combo of Dior Homme Intense and Armani Code both are great scents but this scent is Just plain bad...
25th March, 2015 (last edited: 12th July, 2015)
Midnight in Paris falls within that category of scents which start just wrong, but then become more than remarkable. I mean, most of the times it’s rather the contrary – scents which are good and rich at first, then easily lose the magic soon. The first minutes here are a blast of almost nauseating sweet and kind of “bread-ish” Oriental notes comprising powdery resins, almond, something like hay, a generic “clean-smoky” synthetic wood (I guess the “incense” note) and something musky-floral, with rubbery suede lying underneath. I also get the “tea” especially on the drydown, which is quite similar to the tea in Gucci pour Homme II or Tea for Two by L’Artisan. Also if you know Equistrius by Parfum d’Empire, Midnight reminded me that a bit (I guess because of hay, suede and powdery notes). But at the beginning, all of that is quite loud, quite more on the sweeter-edible side, and overall not exactly the most elegant smell around. Still, as minutes pass Midnight in Paris tames down and “tilts back” to a more pleasant balance, becoming more and more enjoyable and finally reaching a truly remarkable drydown. At this final stage – which luckily arrives quite soon – the blend focuses on a really sophisticated sort of velvety, rubbery suede-woody base with a sprinkle of Oriental powdery-gourmand notes – just a sprinkle, now. A couple of key nuances make this quite distinctive and really pleasant: suede, hay and powder (I call it “powder” but actually think more of almond and tonka; it just smells really dusty, slightly floral and kind of “feminine” as if there was some orris - precisely like powder, shortly). Classy, really “velvety”, warm and cozy, basically a sort of hybrid between Bulgari Black and Dior Homme; sweeter and brighter than Black, but darker, drier and more “grey” than the Dior’s. Give it a chance!

24th March, 2015 (last edited: 22nd April, 2015)
Soak a sugar cube in good bourbon, wrap it in a cloud of cotton balls sprinkled with baby powder, and this is what I get when I wear this out at night to dinner with my woman in the winter.
11th March, 2015
I've not read every single review yet, but has nobody mentioned the similarity to Lolita Lempicka Au Masculin? Which I guess is liquorice and vanilla, in essence. Maybe a bit of smoke.

I don't have a super-sensitive sense of smell, so I am probably not picking up any small differences that others may find.

I need to do a more precise side-by-side comparison, but I think LL just wins by a nose - no pun intended.

As for Bulgari Black comparisons, my BB spray mech jammed (the twiest and spray thing) so I can't remember tat oen too well.

The vanilla - or should I say tonka? - means it lasts a good while and 'clings' to clothes, so bear in mind.
07th March, 2015
Many have compared Midnight in Paris to Bulgari Black, which is one of my all time favourites.

I can see the resemblance, but for those of you who dislike the smoky rubber notes of Black, you'll probably prefer the softer, more rounded feel of Midnight in Paris. I find the drydown slightly more masculine and detect a hint of tobacco (not cigarettes, more like loose tobacco in a pouch). It's sweet though, with a warm tonka, and overall it seems to rest somewhere between Bulgari Black and Chergui, slightly sweeter than Chergui I'd say.

I like Black for evening in winter, but Midnight in Paris is a comfortable wear on winter days too. I've spent a few evenings in Paris in winter and this could indeed be the scent of a back street lined with cosy, traditional restaurants. It's a perfume well suited to low key artsy evening events, or maybe sitting around with friends at one of those hookah cafes! Warm, snuggly on a woolen scarf.

Great on men or women - whoever likes warm vanilla leather perfumes
12th February, 2015
This review is of the EdT.
I am really impressed with the quality of fragrances from the house of Van Cleef and Arpels. Midnight in Paris is their latest release for men, and is a great release to boot. I detect some citrus with hints of chocolate, and a very smooth leather note. Perfect for a date, perfect on evening outs and for dinners. I can imagine one wearing this in the daytime as well, but not in summer. Perfect for evenings and nights in all seasons. I can also very well imagine this on a woman. The performance of the EdT is very good on my skin.
A great fragrance. I can hardly wait to try the EdT.
30th January, 2015
(EDT) Elegant and sophisticated! Midnight In Paris is a true masterpiece by Olivier Polge. I can smell the leather, benzoin and incense. It is sweet, powdery and very pleasant. Perfect for the office and daytime wear. I also own the EDP and I use this one for night time.
17th December, 2014
Marais Show all reviews
United Kingdom
Legend has it that MiP was created when Olivier Polge dropped a teabag into a flacon of Shalimar. Whatever the truth of that apocryphal tale, it sticks in the memory because it gives a reasonable approximation of the smell. Excellent longevity from 3 sprays of the EdT.
11th November, 2014
Now when I first bought MIP I really liked the scent, however now it gives of a very strange smell I can't describe and it is actually quite off putting. to me it just smells stale and to powdery. I find it funny how I can turn on it like that but i on first spray I never smelt what I smell now. It's weird and instead of the scent growing on me, it has done the complete opposite.
05th August, 2014
Really disappointing. I had heard so many good things about this fragrance but im pretty deflated. I shall give it a few tries but im not impressed.
17th April, 2014