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Thread: Saffron

  1. #1

    Default Saffron

    Hi all.

    I've not posted on this forum before, so I hope I'm posting in the right place...

    I've recently picked up several of the Explosion d'Emotions series by Duchaufour for L'Artisan Parfumeur. Skin On Skin and Onde Sensuelle are both listed as containing saffron. To my novice nose, both have something of a plasticky, suedey smell to them, which is especially strong in Skin On Skin where the plastic is right at the front and persists through the heart; in Onde Sensuelle it's below a very dominant grapefruit topnote. On me, Skin On Skin smells like a cheap shoe shop - you know, the kind that sell synthetic vinyl shoes and bags all mixed in with genuine leather and suede, a kind of vinyl and solvent and glue smell. Is this the saffron? I also have Amour Nocturne from the same range and all 3 frags have something in common (some kind of creamy suede quality), but SOS and OS both have this additional plastic thing going on.
    If this is indeed the influence of the saffron, can anyone tell me whether they experience the same kind of plastic in these fragrances? Perhaps I am just really sensitive to it because I've only found a couple of people reporting it in the directory, either here or on Fragrantica or NST. If you could recommend a couple of frags where the saffron is less strident, then I'll definitely give them a sample and work out whether it's a note I really need to sample extensively before buying.

    “Art is a lie that tells the truth” - Pablo Picasso
    Currently wearing: L'Heure Bleue by Guerlain

  2. #2

    Default Re: Saffron

    I would recommend trying L'Artisan Safran Troublant if you can. I own this and agree with several reviewers who describe it as a delicate, gentle saffron.

    I think one of the only other scents I own that has saffron is Costume 21, but there is a LOT going on with that one. I don't know if it would be a good one for helping you analyze saffron specifically.

    I guess my new SOTD also has saffron: Santal Carmin. Shows you how observant I am.
    Last edited by tang; 13th March 2017 at 03:10 PM.
    Sniff and let sniff.

  3. #3

    Default Re: Saffron

    Hi Miss Hesta, welcome. Saffron shouldn't smell like plastic. It's a difficult scent to describe, but is sweet and delicate. If you have a store near you that sells really fresh spices the easiest reference would be to smell some. It's commonly used to provide colour and flavour to mild food items, such as rice and sweetened breads. I'm not sure what is causing the plasticky note that you describe, but there many be other more knowledgeable Basenoters who can provide some insight here.

  4. #4

    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Washington, DC

    Default Re: Saffron

    I don't know those two perfumes, so I don't know what material is responsible for the effect. There is an aromachemical called, I believe, safranal, or something like that, that has facets of saffron and suede/leather. I don't perceive it as plasticky, but it's certainly leathery. It is very evident in a perfume called Tom of Finland, where it's paired with stronger leather, as well as in the sweeter Bulgari Omnia (the original yellow one, not the flankers). Perhaps you are oversensitive to this material. Or else, it's really not the saffron reconstruction per se, but other materials that are used in those perfumes.

    For a smooth rendition of saffron, I also recommend the cited Safran Troublant. This is smooth and supermilky, highlighting the soft facets of the material.


  5. #5

    Default Re: Saffron

    Quote Originally Posted by cacio View Post
    There is an aromachemical called, I believe, safranal, or something like that, that has facets of saffron and suede/leather. I don't perceive it as plasticky, but it's certainly leathery.

    I have a feeling that safranal (and a possible sensitivity to it) will be the culprit. There's a milky-suede quality to all 3 of the Explosion d'Emotions frags which I have and as I said, they're very much variations on a common theme. I have a strong feeling you've hit the nail on the head! I'll see if there's any kicking around in the lab at uni for me to have a sniff of. I'll get hold of a sample of Tom of Finland, too. Lellabelle and tang - I'll give the Safran Troublant a go as well, and also see if I can get a sniff of the real stuff; must say, I don't recall the small amounts I've had in the kitchen to have had a memorable fragrance.
    Thanks all - I'll report back in due course.
    “Art is a lie that tells the truth” - Pablo Picasso
    Currently wearing: L'Heure Bleue by Guerlain

  6. #6
    Super Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2013

    Default Re: Saffron

    I don't get any plasticky facets from saffron.

  7. #7

    Default Re: Saffron

    I think that Calligraphy Saffron by Aramis is an incredible fragrance, especially for the money. This could easily be considered niche and command a much higher pricetag. The marigold note is simply stunning and the composition has a tempered middle eastern feel. It has a slight dash of oud, but this is my no means an "oud-centric" fragrance. The oud in this scent adds depth and character but by no means takes center-stage.

    It has been discontinued but is still readily available through online retailers. If you're looking for a warm, luxurious fragrance with honeyed floral feel and a well done saffron note, I think you'd really enjoy this.
    I have found the paradox, that if you love until it hurts, there can be no more hurt, only more love.

    Mother Teresa
    Currently wearing: Gris Clair by Serge Lutens

  8. #8
    hednic's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Reside in McLean, Va. Manhattan NYC, Manuel Antonio Costa Rica & Búzios Brasil

    Default Re: Saffron

    Quote Originally Posted by Ekscentra View Post
    I don't get any plasticky facets from saffron.
    Nor do I. One of my favorite saffron scents is Indian Saffron by Montale.
    Remember that while it is perfectly acceptable to criticize the content of a post - criticizing the poster is not.
    Mean spirited, nasty, snide, sarcastic, hateful, and rude individuals on Basenotes don't warrant or deserve my or other Basenoters' acknowledgement or respect.

  9. #9

    Default Re: Saffron

    Safranal smells like mold or damp cellar to me but if you use it highly diluted or in tiny quantities it does smell like saffron but kind of missing the sweetness. From what I read there is another chemical, lanierone, also responsible for the scent of real saffron.
    I used safranal in the tiniest quantity I could (less than 3/100 of a g) in a 2g trial and it took over completely and gave the blend a strong scent of saffron for the first hour or so.

  10. #10

    Default Re: Saffron

    Make a 10.0% or even 1.0% solution, and experiment with that.

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