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  1. #1

    Default Serge Lutens' Rose de Nuit revisited...

    I feel the need to update my experience of Rose de Nuit. The review is already there, unfortunately, so now my first wearing is immortalized - but hey, that's what the Basenotes forums are for!

    On first application, I didn't use enough, and thus Rose de Nuit vanished in a matter of minutes on me. I'd normally give it up for lost, as I do some quick-fading fragrances, but recently, in the spirit of revisitation, I used up the rest of my sample on my wrist and chest.

    While the sillage is still delicate, this time the result was much more sustained and I got a chance to truly smell it. The longevity is actually not bad at all on this fragrance, averaging around eight hours with moderate sillage, and about twice that smelled near the skin.

    It is interesting to contrast this with Sa Majeste La Rose, Lutens' export rose offering. The two could not be more different in their treatment of the same note. Sa Majeste is naturalistic where De Nuit is abstract, fresh, cool and dewy where De Nuit is warm, dry and leathery. While I often can't figure out their reasoning, the choice of export for Sa Majeste and non-export for De Nuit makes a lot of sense. The former is so extroverted and immediately appealing; the latter is subtle, "difficult" and somewhat old-fashioned. They are polar opposites within the same note.

    Usually classified as a chypre, the bergamot is fairly mild if detectable to my nose in this fragrance, but burns off very quickly. Oak moss, however, practically co-stars with with rose and is noticeable from the top to the bottom of this fragrance, something I greatly appreciate.

    I have the most minuscule sample of vintage Mitsouko parfum that I put a drop of on the opposite wrist to compare Rose De Nuit with a classic chypre directly. The two are different in many ways, but they really do share a certain feel. It's a certain mellow, velvety smoothness that gives them a soft-focus touch.

    Through the heart, however, it's not a Guerlain I'm reminded of - it's a Caron. There's a touch of something smoky and leathery dancing around the mossy rose core; something reminiscent of Tabac Blond's leather note. There is also a hint of incense darkening the blend, making De Nuit's title somewhat more appropriate to my nose.

    The base, however, is lighter. Some of the heaviness subsides and honey unexpectedly emerges to give a cheerful touch to a rather brooding fragrance. By this point, though, De Nuit is quite delicate and soft.

    I still retain an impression that I would prefer this fragrance in a parfum format as I'd like it stronger and more concentrated. At the same time, I recognize the innate heaviness of this fragrance might make it overbearing if turned up to high volume.

    All in all, Rose De Nuit is quite interesting, but I don't love it. I deeply appreciate it on some level, and it's a fragrance I want to try and savor again, but I doubt I'll ever pick up a bottle.

    I feel every fragrance conjures up a personality, and Rose De Nuit comes across as a bit of an elderly high society lady wearing what was the height of fashion fifty years ago. More than a touch of Maleficent to Sa Majeste's Snow White, to be sure...

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Serge Lutens' Rose de Nuit revisited...

    Isn't it weird, Galamb?

    The first hour I had it on my skin (from a sample) I kept saying to myself, 'What is this!?' Is it a floral? A chypre? A leather? It's got a little 'evil' vibe to it (kind of like No. 88 does) but it's not as dandy-fied or English smelling (whatever that means). IMO, it is everything that I wanted Domenico Caraceni to be (I still have not warmed up to DC). Some compare it to Cabochard by Gres (or Aramis, for that matter), but I couldn't smell the connection. I think, like you, a decant of Rose de Nuit would be more than enough for me to keep my interest piqued.

    I also think it's strange that more men here on BN don't talk about RdN, when clearly we discuss SO MANY other rose scents here. Silly, isn't it?
    Last edited by mikeperez23; 17th March 2009 at 08:38 PM.

  3. #3

    Default Re: Serge Lutens' Rose de Nuit revisited...

    Quote Originally Posted by mikeperez23 View Post
    I also think it's strange that more men here on BN don't talk about RdN, when clearly we discuss SO MANY other rose scents here. Silly, isn't it?
    It is odd, especially as a rose leather chypre sounds right up the alley of many Basenoters' fragrance tastes.

  4. #4

    Default Re: Serge Lutens' Rose de Nuit revisited...

    I need to revisit this...it was the very first Lutens I samples, and I absolutely hated it. That was before I knew much (of anything) about perfume, so I like to think my tastes have broadened.

  5. #5

    Default Re: Serge Lutens' Rose de Nuit revisited...

    It is the only Lutens I have a bottle of. I really like it and it is different from all other rose fragrances I have tried.
    "Wonderfully wild, eminently civilized" - Derby by Guerlain

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  6. #6

    Default Re: Serge Lutens' Rose de Nuit revisited...

    I had a fun experiment today comparing the last few drops of various samples of various rose fragrances I have, in this case four - Paestum Rose, Mata Hari, Dark Rose, and Rose de Nuit. I didn't have enough for a full wearing of any of them, so I took a chance to contrast and compare.

    Of the four, Dark Rose was the truest and most natural, Mata Hari the most tenacious, Paestum Rose the driest, and Rose de Nuit the most complex. My favorite was Dark Rose, all in all - it's ephemeral but just so gorgeous I'm getting a bottle anyhow.

    I definitely have a soft spot for Rose de Nuit, though. It's just so... different. It has a whole ugly-beautiful quality to it that intrigues me; it's complex to the point of muddy but somehow pulls it off with smoothness.

    Quote Originally Posted by sofresh View Post
    I need to revisit this...it was the very first Lutens I samples, and I absolutely hated it. That was before I knew much (of anything) about perfume, so I like to think my tastes have broadened.
    This is definitely a fragrance that needs a few tries to get into. I'm lucky enough to have encountered it once I'd gotten to the point of reconsidering fragrances a few times before liking or disliking them or else I never would have "discovered" this intriguing creation.

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Serge Lutens' Rose de Nuit revisited...

    Quote Originally Posted by Galamb_Borong View Post
    Of the four, Dark Rose was the truest and most natural, Mata Hari the most tenacious, Paestum Rose the driest, and Rose de Nuit the most complex. My favorite was Dark Rose, all in all - it's ephemeral but just so gorgeous I'm getting a bottle anyhow.
    So Dark Rose is good enough to push Paestum Rose off of your Wish List Galamb? Wow. I can't wait til I get my sample of it.

  8. #8

    Default Re: Serge Lutens' Rose de Nuit revisited...

    if you liked Dark Rose, then Montale Oudh Damascus would be rght up your alley.

  9. #9

    Default Re: Serge Lutens' Rose de Nuit revisited...

    I think there would be more discussion on rose de nuit if it was easily available, and it is not. A bloody shame because I prefer it above the other one too. I was thinking of purchasing another Lutens and very interested in any rose scents since I seem to be on a rose kick and after smelling rose de nuit I just can't justify buying the other one since I find it rather ' meh' .
    But once you get locked into a serious perfume collection, the tendency is to push it as far as you can.

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    Default Re: Serge Lutens' Rose de Nuit revisited...

    Oh man, another Lutens I haven't tried. I just found I really like Sa Maj. It's such a, well majestic, faithful rendition of rose. It's just too linear, I suppose. It might get dull after a while. But it is good. I wonder, does Nuit overcome that linear problem? I also love Paestum & Damascus. I haven't tried Dark Rose. Black Aoud of course is a must & not at all like #88 which I also love.

  11. #11

    Default Re: Serge Lutens' Rose de Nuit revisited...

    Hmm.. after this great reveiw I may have to revisit this fragrance also
    Last edited by lightgreen22; 19th March 2009 at 05:35 PM.

  12. #12
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    Default Re: Serge Lutens' Rose de Nuit revisited...

    Quote Originally Posted by kumquat View Post
    Oh man, another Lutens I haven't tried. I just found I really like Sa Maj. It's such a, well majestic, faithful rendition of rose. It's just too linear, I suppose. It might get dull after a while. But it is good. I wonder, does Nuit overcome that linear problem? I also love Paestum & Damascus. I haven't tried Dark Rose. Black Aoud of course is a must & not at all like #88 which I also love.
    Rose de Nuit is much more complex than SMLR. It is not in the least boring. Very topsy-turvy kind of rose chypre. Think Cabaret by Gres meets Comme des Garcons.
    Last edited by mikeperez23; 19th March 2009 at 05:40 PM.

  13. #13

    Default Re: Serge Lutens' Rose de Nuit revisited...

    Quote Originally Posted by mikeperez23 View Post
    So Dark Rose is good enough to push Paestum Rose off of your Wish List Galamb? Wow. I can't wait til I get my sample of it.
    They are very different rose fragrances... Paestum Rose is a strong, clear rose founded on cedar, incense and myrrh; Dark Rose is a transparent oud-rose fragrance that's like a watercolor compared to Montale's oil-paint, if that analogy makes sense. While Paestum Rose has better longevity and sillage, Dark Rose appeals to me a lot more than any rose fragrance I've smelled to date, even ones I love like Sa Majeste, No. 88 and Paestum.

    Quote Originally Posted by jenson View Post
    if you liked Dark Rose, then Montale Oudh Damascus would be rght up your alley.
    Thanks for the heads up! I've tried Montale's Auod Roses Petals side by side with Dark Rose and there is definitely a similarity in smell, but I found that Montale less smooth and interesting than Dark Rose.

    I must say, before investing in a bottle of Dark Rose I am ordering more Montale samples to try and see if there's one by them better ( going on an oud rose jag and not trying some Montales is almost a crime ). For example, I've never gotten around to trying Black Oud, which is such a hit around here.

    Quote Originally Posted by kumquat View Post
    Oh man, another Lutens I haven't tried. I just found I really like Sa Maj. It's such a, well majestic, faithful rendition of rose. It's just too linear, I suppose. It might get dull after a while. But it is good. I wonder, does Nuit overcome that linear problem? I also love Paestum & Damascus. I haven't tried Dark Rose. Black Aoud of course is a must & not at all like #88 which I also love.
    Honestly I can't say Rose de Nuit is like any of those, but given you like such diverse rose fragrances I'd definitely recommend giving it a try!

    I feel the same way about Sa Majeste - gorgeous, but so linear it's hard for me to justify a bottle. I can't help but think that the times I need to spend twelve hours smelling like a rose garden are few and far between.

    Rose de Nuit is not at all linear, going through several phases, but also not in the least natural smelling. It's not a cheaply synthetic rose, but one very curiously distorted into something un-floral. To retreat into metaphor, Sa Majeste is a photograph of a nude; Rose de Nuit is Picasso's Les Demoiselles d'Avignon.

  14. #14
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    Default Re: Serge Lutens' Rose de Nuit revisited...

    GB, What a great art metaphor! If SMLR is, say a classic Weston nude photograph, Rose de Nuit is Picasso's Les Demoiselles D'Avignon. I absolutely must try this now!
    Last edited by kumquat; 19th March 2009 at 07:10 PM.

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