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  1. #1
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    mikeperez23's Avatar
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    Default Hermessence: Brin de Reglisse by Hermes - a mini review

    Before I review the newest Hermessence: Brin de Reglisse by Hermes I want to start out by talking about longevity.

    Yes, the other L word. It sure does come up a lot here on the threads of Basenotes, doesn't it. Longevity, that is, the amount of time a fragrance lasts on our skin can inspire such passionate, emotional responses from many of us. There's more than half a dozen theories floating around about how to 'extend' longevity to our fragrances (applying body lotion beforehand; layering with body products) as well as reasons that we say a particular scent does or does not have longevity (the scents composition; climate; number of sprays; etc). Here's my take on longevity: Yes, I wish some of the scents I love lasted longer. I also have found that certain houses (Jo Malone, L'Artisan Parfumeur - to name a few) are saddled with numerous scents that have low longevity.

    However, I've never let longevity bother me from buying a scent. Honestly I wear 3-4 scents throughout the hours in a day - if a scent fades in 5-6 hours that's just fine with me because I'll be happily reapplying another scent around that time anyway. I've also found that certain times of the day (right before bed, for instance) I like a scent that fades quickly, so that I'm not being bombarded with smells in my sleep.

    But (and here we come to the 'review' part of my thread) Brin de Reglisse, a lavender/licorice scent that is part of the Hermessence Series of boutique exclusive scents by Hermes sadly suffers from extremely low longevity. You fans of Jean Claude Ellena (the perfumer) know that a few of JCE's fragrances (specifically Bigarade Concentree and L'Eau d'Hiver by Frederic Malle) are known for their minimalist style. However BdR is not just minimal it's shockingly low in longevity.

    The scent: I LOVE IT. The lavender (reputed to have been dissected by JCE 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 gourmandy (like Yohji Homme) and not anise-oriented (well...like 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 confectionary note that reminded me of white chocolate (not a note in BdR?). It strikes that yin/yang between the dry herbal note and that sweet candy note - like only JCE can. 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 then...it 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.
    Last edited by mikeperez23; 31st December 2007 at 09:27 PM.

  2. #2

    Default Re: Hermessence: Brin de Reglisse by Hermes - a mini review

    Wow! Finally Mike put his review on Brin de Reglisse out!
    LoL...
    Thanks for your comprehensive review. Generally I considered Hermessence members as potential purchases, even think about buying them blindly. Specially because I like warm lavender, this one was important for me.
    But as far as I wear "luxury priced" ones for ceremonies, formal parties or that kind of dressings, the lasting power and silage are important factors. So I think the Hermessence wont work for me.

  3. #3

    Default Re: Hermessence: Brin de Reglisse by Hermes - a mini review

    Thanks Mike for the nice review!
    Said that I luv both Bigarrade concentré (bitter orange is probably my fav citrus with bergamot second) and Eau d'hiver and have no longevity issues with them (they pretty last on me more than 5-6 hours) I do find lavender quite critical to like on me, and I must confess this candied liquorice makes me suspicious about it.... can you compare it with the candied liquorice in Lutens Arabie (which I dislike)?
    Again Celery over white chocolate? Maybe they're just prejudices... I will give ti a test as soon as I can. Maybe I'm wrong, but seems something I'm not going to enjoy and if truly it has longevity issues this definitely runs it out of my interest, specially for that price.

  4. #4

    Default Re: Hermessence: Brin de Reglisse by Hermes - a mini review

    great review of the new Hermes product. I'll make sure to get a small sample.

    On the opposite side of the coin from L'Artisan's etc. There are some Creeds that need to be forced to go away. I think the ones with Ambergris in the base. Whale urp. Who knew!

  5. #5

    Default Re: Hermessence: Brin de Reglisse by Hermes - a mini review

    Great writeup, Mike !


    I really loved this- for the entire several minutes it lasted on my skin.
    The initial blast is spectacular.
    But unfortunately, it is terribly expensive for something that won't hang around for at least an hour.
    It's an awful shame.
    So lovely- too brief.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Hermessence: Brin de Reglisse by Hermes - a mini review

    Quote Originally Posted by Magnifiscent View Post
    I do find lavender quite critical to like on me, and I must confess this candied liquorice makes me suspicious about it.... can you compare it with the candied liquorice in Lutens Arabie (which I dislike)?
    It is not syrupy and/or honeyed like Arabie. It's sweetness is slightly dry, crisp and aromatic. Fans of licorice who can get past the longevity issues will love this scent.

    Quote Originally Posted by fredricktoo View Post
    On the opposite side of the coin from L'Artisan's etc. There are some Creeds that need to be forced to go away.
    I agree. Not just Creed though - two that come to mind immediately are Black Orchid by Tom Ford and Incense by Norma Kamali...they're positively 'Energizer Bunny' in their longevity.
    Last edited by mikeperez23; 11th December 2007 at 02:50 PM.

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Hermessence: Brin de Reglisse by Hermes - a mini review

    I stumbled upon a short article on Jean Claude Ellena and Brin de Reglisse in DEPARTURES magazine January/February 2008 issue that I thought I'd post below for all you Jean Claude Ellena groupies [like me]:


  8. #8

    Default Re: Hermessence: Brin de Reglisse by Hermes - a mini review

    Any comparasion with Terre d'Hermès

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Hermessence: Brin de Reglisse by Hermes - a mini review

    Quote Originally Posted by smadnaniqbal View Post
    Any comparasion with Terre d'Hermès
    No, not at all.

    I actually wore a few sprays of Terre de Hermes today, and I was out in the sun all day (it's about 80 here in Miami) and while TdH is flinty, sparkly, slightly citrusy and then earthy - the Brin de Religlisse is vegetal, crisp gourmand and slightly confectionary.

    Two entirely different animals.

  10. #10

    Default Re: Hermessence: Brin de Reglisse by Hermes - a mini review

    Any other opinions on this as of late?
    Is the juice worth the squeeze?

  11. #11
    hednic's Avatar
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    Default Re: Hermessence: Brin de Reglisse by Hermes - a mini review

    One of my preferred licorice scents.

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