Perfume Directory

Individuel (2003)
by Montblanc


Individuel information

Year of Launch2003
AvailabilityIn Production
Average Rating
(based on 458 votes)

People and companies

PerfumerPierre Bourdon
SupplierFragrance Resources
PackagingFranzrudolf Lehnert
Parent CompanyInter Parfums
Parent Company at launchProcter & Gamble > P&G Prestige Beaute

About Individuel

Individuel is a masculine fragrance by Montblanc. The scent was launched in 2003 and the fragrance was created by perfumer Pierre Bourdon. The bottle was designed by Franzrudolf Lehnert

Individuel fragrance notes

Reviews of Individuel

Montblanc Individuel (2003) is a love or hate kind of fragrance with a tumultuous history full of controversy, conspiracy theories, and hype from influencers that literally brought it back from the dead once after it had been discontinued, only to slowly see it fade from memory again until threats of discontinuation made it relevant once more. For these reasons and more, this scent gets a lot of talk, and I can imagine will only get more talk if and when it does dry up again in the market as it has done several times, especially since one of those times will likely be its last. The big deal about this stuff, and the main reason anyone still talks about it so many years after it's initial release on the market (in which it tanked), is that Montblanc Individuel was notoriously copied almost note-for-note by Creed with the release of Creed original Santal (2005), a scent I personally loathe not only for this reason, but for literally being a sandalwood fragrance with no discernible sandalwood. More like scandalwood, am I right guys? Anyway, the Creed was richer, sweeter, and a tad more natural-smelling, mixing in some elements from Joop! Homme by Parfums Joop! (1989), to which this is often compared as well. It's true, you have to be okay with the general theme of the classic monster that is Joop! Homme to really appreciate Individuel, but I believe this scent is continued development of the ideas in Joop! Homme, plus a whole bunch of other kitchen sink stuff that most mainstream guys in the early 2000's just weren't into anymore. Either way, you've smelled this before and know right away if you like it or not, so there's no gray areas or learning to like the stuff in time like with some other things. Montblanc also wouldn't have a fragrance of theirs receive any talk after this until Montblanc Legend (2011) came along almost a decade later.

Montblanc Individuel was bashed together by master perfumer Pierre Bourdon, the legendary nose behind some of the biggest hitters in the male fragrance market, including several early Creed scents he co-penned along with his friend and fellow Roure Bertrand Dupont graduate Olivier Creed when the latter asked for help in modernizing the house which had up until then only peddled mostly classic French perfumery. Individuel opens up with a fairly strong cinnamon, sweetened with pineapple, various citruses, and made masculine with lavender, mint, and juniper. Some liken this opening to the smell of Red Hots candy, but honestly that is more the trick Original Santal tries to pull since it strives to be more "extra" in every way. Avon Frikton for Men (2000) is a better example of the kind of cinnamon found in Individuel, and it's nice. The heart is rather floral and some would say feminine by conventional standards, with orange blossom, jasmine, and rosy geranium, plus a few gourmand twists of cocoa, raspberry, and vanilla. Only some violet leaf dries things up enough to move Individuel away from this perceived femininity, and a host of spices like coriander, cardamom, and nutmeg join the mostly-oriental base of amber, patchouli, oakmoss, musk, and javanol pulling duty as sandalwood. The ultimate effect here is like a drier, more complex, and refined take on Joop! Homme, dialing back the gauche and adding some artistry. Wear time is really good at 10+ hours and performance is more than enough for cold days. Best use for me with Individuel is clubbing or romantic evenings if under-sprayed, or really just any time you want to cut the air. Montblanc Individuel is nothing if not a statement fragrance, but because of its complexity and blending, can be different things to different people depending on what stage of the dry down you encounter it on a person, which is something the upscale Creed take on this can't claim with its paired-down design.

Montblanc were struggling to make a name for themselves in perfume at the time Individuel dropped onto shelves, with the mild-smelling debut Montblanc Présence (2001) having gone over like a lead balloon. Individuel swung the pendulum to the opposite end, as Bourdon basically took the DNA of the bombastic genderbending powerhouse Joop! Homme and infused it with both gourmand, oriental, and barbershop tones to make something with slightly more maturity, more gravitas, but with all the bizarre gender-fluidity intact. Considering the "metrosexual" fashion movement was just starting to ramp up, one might figure this a hit, but it wasn't so. Some say Bourdon's ties to Olivier Creed and the fact he took much of the aromachemical wizardry he wrought in Creed Green Irish Tweed (1985) over to Davidoff Cool Water (1988) meant he owned him one, since he unknowingly invented the aquatic genre and caused a huge paradigm shift in masculine perfumery in the process, thus forking over his recipe to Creed for modification into Original Santal. This of course had the effect of screwing over Montblanc, as Creed was slowly climbing the hype hill in the men's fragrance world even before Creed Aventus (2010) came along to blow the doors open, which is where tales of Montblanc getting revenge against Creed by making Montblanc Explorer (2019) originate. The truth is that comparisons to the later Original Santal are actually what saved Individuel from obscurity, causing Montblanc to re-issue the fragrance after YouTube reviewers brought light to the stuff. I like Individuel but it isn't an every day wear, which may be why 75ml bottles are the largest size, and when it's gone from the world once again, I can learn to live without it. I won't say scramble to get some before it's too late, but you do need to sample Individuel if you haven't smelled it, because it's quite memorable. Just please, don't pay Creed prices for it. Thumbs up.
22nd February, 2021
Blunt, synthetic, youthful (albeit in a very "of its time" kinda way), this Bourdon creation took the fruity-fresh 90s fragrance into the sweet gourmand direction that was gaining steam at the time.
07th August, 2020
Very disappointing attempt at a fresh clean scent. Literally smells like you've rubbed yourself with a dryer sheet. Has sweet and feminine notes. Very powdery and synthetic smelling. Not for me. Thankfully it was cheap and has weak longevity on my skin. Really awful stuff.
09th June, 2020
This is disappointing. Just another synthetic powder bomb like many others before it. It's maybe a bit nicer than say One Million, but it's just not something I'd wear. A sickening sweetness that muddles all the notes together. Screams "hey look at me". Maybe give it a go if you need a clubbing scent, but that's not me.
25th July, 2019
As others have noted, Individuel is sweet and fruity, youthful, somewhat feminine. It's not unpleasant, but it is artificial and a little boring, as one might expect given the price. I can't really imagine myself wearing this one.
09th July, 2019
If you wear this, you will smell fresh and a bit spicy.It's artificial smelling up close.

This fragrance is for young men - in highschool you should wear this when you dress somewhat nicely. Wear it to work as well.

It will do well in any weather as long as it's not blazing hot.

The projection is alright for me. It lasts a super long time in my experience. I can smell it on my shirts the next day most of the time.

I really like this fragrance, it breaks expectations for the price.

10th March, 2019

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