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  1. #1

    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Louisville, KY

    Default Vetivers and Ambers

    I noticed on another thread that rentboy recently bought both LV and MPG's Vetivers. One of my partner's staple fragrances in Creed's OV and when I tried it on myself, I noticed that it didn't do much for me, so I thought that vetivers weren't my thing. Then I tried LV's Vetiver and it was a whole different ballgame! I loved it - so dark and earthy. I'd read a lot about MPG's RdV, so I got a sample of it and decided that the LV was the one for me to purchase, and now it's my favorite thing in my wardrobe. My question is, since all of these smell so different, I'm not sure what vetiver itself actually smells like. Can someone describe it? Also, what is your favorite vetiver?

    On to amber - I recently tried a sample of SL Ambre Sultan and I've ordered a sample of MPG's Ambre Precieux to see which one I shoudl purchase, but it hasn't arrived yet. Are there any other ambers in this league I should try before I buy one of those two? What is your favorite amber?

  2. #2

    Default Re: Vetivers and Ambers

    Quote Originally Posted by Tonyprince View Post
    My question is, since all of these smell so different, I'm not sure what vetiver itself actually smells like. Can someone describe it? Also, what is your favorite vetiver?
    What is your favorite amber?
    Wikipedia describes the smell of vetiver as: deep, sweet, woody, smoky, earthy, amber, balsamic. Yes, it can be many of those things, depending on where the vetiver is from, of course. It is a bit of a chameleon. My two favorites are Annick Goutal's and Etro's, which celebrate vetiver's rawness. Lalique's Encre Noir blends vetiver quite nicely.
    I also love amber based fragrances, Voile de Ambre by Yves Rocher is quite lovely and an amazing deal. Ambre Extreme by L'Artisan is wonderful, but my absolute favorite is Blue Amber by Montale. I have a new one by Guerlain, the reformulated Volie de Nuit/Evasion, which has a sweet amber that is almost kept in check by a moss note. Serge Lutens is the amber lover's house, for sure.
    Last edited by Kevin Guyer; 14th October 2007 at 03:16 PM.

  3. #3

    Default Re: Vetivers and Ambers

    RdV is very dark and earthy, too -- you really ought to try it sometime. I only sold mine to rentboy because I already have Vetiver Extraordinaire in my wardrobe AND Guerlain's old Vetiver and really wasn't using RdV as much as a result.

    Of the ambers out there, Ambre Sultan is decidedly the sexiest. But for sweet, wearable amber? You can't beat Montale's Blue Amber. The least wearable amber, IMHO? Prada pour Homme. Beautifully blended, yes, but SO sweet that diabetics and hypoglycemics must stay away from it. Really more appropriate for a woman than a man, IMHO.
    Last edited by tvlampboy; 14th October 2007 at 03:58 PM.

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  4. #4
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    mikeperez23's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Miami, FL

    Default Re: Vetivers and Ambers

    The smell of vetiver is wildly different in many fragrances - mostly due to skin chemistry, the kind of vetiver used, natural vs. synthetic, climate, concentration or percentage of oil, blah blah blah. Keep exploring the vetiver world - there are as many shades of vetiver as there are shades of green. I would imagine that even if you went to a health food store or essential oil store and bought vetiver oil and smelled it, the smell might vary from brand to brand. A few vetiver classics are: Guerlain Vetiver (with a healthy dose of tobacco), Vetiver Tonka by Hermes (vetiver sweetened with burnt sugar accords), Vettiveru by Comme des Garcons (the vetiver-light a whisper of vetiver) and Vetiver Extraordinaire by Frederic Malle (the best use of Haitian vetiver IMO).

    Amber? I will always compare all ambers I smell to Ambre Sultan, which is my very favorite fragrance. But I agree with Ruggles, the Montale line has gotten high marks with their Blue Amber. I would also try Lavender and Amber by Jo Malone (if you like lavender) - very refreshing stuff. A more 'unisex' amber scent I love (but some men think it's too feminine...only you can decide for yourself) is Youth Dew Amber Nude by Estee Lauder (Tom Ford).
    Last edited by mikeperez23; 14th October 2007 at 04:05 PM.
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  5. #5

    Default Re: Vetivers and Ambers

    MPGs amber offer is my favorite, but also check out l'Artisans l'Eau d'Ambre. A nice and well behaved amber, but equally good.

  6. #6

    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Louisville, KY

    Default Re: Vetivers and Ambers

    Thanks for all of the advice so far! It looks like I need to add Montale's Blue Amber to my list of things to get a sample of before I make my amber purchase. I don't like too much sweetness in a fragrance, so it sounds like that stipulation may limit the appeal of some ambers.

  7. #7
    Mattybumpkin's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Upstate NY, outside Albany

    Default Re: Vetivers and Ambers

    Agatha Brown's Conquest is a very nice amber scent.
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  8. #8

    Default Re: Vetivers and Ambers

    Natural vetiver oil smells like a clump of sod: dirty and rooty, with a grassy undertone that comes out more in dilution. Some vetivers have a bit of a burnt or smoky note as well.

    I don't think you'll really see a lot of variation in natural vetiver, but when it comes to vetiver fragrances which have all sorts of other stuff mixed into them and might not actually use real vetiver at all.. yeah, they could smell like just about anything.

  9. #9

    Default Re: Vetivers and Ambers

    as you can probably tell, Vetiver has turned out to be one of my favorite notes. If you look at my wardrobe, you'll see a lot of vetiver-based frags, and a lot of other frags with vetiver as a prominent note It's a very versatile note, brings a lot of earthiness into a fragrance, and really provides a (pardon the pun) root to almost every accord.

    there are several really great threads on this board about vetiver, one of the first i recall upon joining was a terrific thread wherein wicozani has a "battle of the vetivers"

    it got me intrigued and then started my voyage into all things vetiver.

    I also really like Montale's Vetiver des Sables, but at this point I think I'm probably set with the Vetivers... at least for now

  10. #10
    DOCPSYCHO's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Napoleon, Ohio

    Smile Re: Vetivers and Ambers

    I have tried all kinds of Vetivers and they are just not my cup of tea. Too Grassy I guess
    although others on this board might not describe them this way but thats my nose so to speak. I like L'artisans L'eau d' amber, it seems a darker amber to me than Ambre Precieux. I will have to re try blue amber again. Thanks to Vijay I should recieve a sample this week with my purchase of Patchouli Leaves. Try a sample of l'eau d' Empires Ambre Russe. That is a nice one as well. I am not sure but I believe KL homme has amber and some patchouli in it although I have not checked the scent profile.

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  11. #11

    Default Re: Vetivers and Ambers

    I have to agree that LV Vetiver is a great vetiver - a truly unique and masterful fragrance. It is earthy and rooty vetiver that has a dry smoke tonkan basenote that compliments the vetiver earthiness really well. Other vetiver formulas that are very good - but go in more traditional directions for vetiver fragrance than LV Vetiver does: Sel d' Vetiver by Different Co.(salty and bright), Encre Noir by Lalique (dark,mysterious), Vettiveru by CdG (light, pure & vegetal), Vetiver Extraordinaire by Ed. Fr. Malle (raw, deep), and Mugler Cologne (green + fresh).

    My favorite amber is probably Tauer's Lu Air Desert Morocain - tempers the amber with spice and woods.

  12. #12

    Default Re: Vetivers and Ambers

    here's another good link about vetiver:


  13. #13

    Default Re: Vetivers and Ambers

    I'll take any vetiver as long as it smells more on the clean side and not bitter and earthy. Paul Smith Story is a great vetiver based scent complimented by citrus and a green rose.

    As for amber, it doesn't get more simple and sensual as Profumum's Amber. For a cleaner amber it's Prada or Armani Atttitude. For a full amber it's always instant love with L'Occitane's Ambre for me.

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