Perfume Reviews

Positive Reviews of Sauvage Elixir by Christian Dior

Total Reviews: 4
Nuclear Sauvage
Without the radiation
Reveals core beauty.
16th September, 2021
Dior Sauvage Elixir (2021) continues the oneupmanship Dior has locked themselves into with Chanel ever since it unleashed Dior Sauvage (2015) as their answer to Bleu de Chanel (2010). I can imagine most people reading this review are probably tired of this high school rivalry (I know I am), as it has done nothing but beget richer and sweeter versions of Dior Sauvage that lose the plot of the divisive original more and more with each successive entry. Dior Sauvage Eau de Parfum 2018) took the edge off of the original while still retaining much of its character, offering the compromise for those not happy with the olfactive white noise for the wearer that the original created. Dior Sauvage Parfum (2019) tossed in a ton of sweet tonka and called itself a fougère (more like nü-gère). Here with Dior Sauvage Elixir, house perfumer and Dior creative director François Demachy "strips" the elements of Sauvage down to the core naturals which the synthetics surround in the original, then builds up a new fragrance with more naturals, more than what is typically used in a designer fragrance anymore (but about what you can expect from a vintage 80's designer). In essence, this brings back the "quality" vintage fans miss from designers of yore, by having a much larger materials budget; but still tries to deliver the "Sauvage" experience through this time-warped lens of denser and more-lucid materials. The result? Dior Sauvage if it was made in 1982 like Drakkar Noir by Guy Laroche (1982), just with a nasty price tag of $155 for 2oz. I'll repeat this several times in the review, because it's a big part of how this scent will rank for many, because Dior is seriously running up against value propositions from houses like Parfums de Marly or Creed with this one.

For a designer that costs more per ounce than some niche fragrances do, this stuff had better be good. Well, it's good; maybe not $155 good for many people, but this is Sauvage done in the era Dior Fahrenheit (1988). Ironically, this process creates a less-challenging Sauvage, as without the overcharged ambroxan and norlimbanol providing the weapons-grade buzz of the original, we get a pleasant masculine experience that nobody in their right mind could complain about. Yeah, this is a tad more mature than OG Sauvage, but that makes it all the more likeable for the usual gatekeepers and tastemakers of the online male fragrance hubris hulabaloo landscape. SmellyGent1975 and IFRAhater65 can sleep easy knowing that this is Dior Sauvage "done proper", just with a gross premium. The opening is darker with grapefruit substituting for bergamot essence, and cardamom giving a heavy handed nod to spicy old fougère openings. Nutmeg and cinnamon wrap the heart of lavender (not lavandin) with touches of metallic geranium giving link to the eau de toilette. The base is mostly tonka, patchouli, vetiver, New Caledonia sandalwood, all wrapped in a smoky licorice twist that will remind some of Lolita Lempicka crossed with smokier juices of old like Jacomo de Jacomo (1980). You won't be entirely free from aromachemicals here though, as there are still plenty buzzing around, they just sit well below intolerable levels for most and have to be here in order for this to register as Sauvage; at least to some degree. If you didn't mind ionones in Fahrenheit, I think you snobs will live with a little bit of chemicals here too. Wear time is all day, but projection is obviously close with such high concentrations as an "elixir", which is basically extrait de parfum.

In the end, haters are gonna hate, but if one of the big deal-breakers for Sauvage was more style related than substance related, you may come around to Sauvage Elixir, given you can handle the price. For me, the $155 for 2oz is the biggest no-no, and I have far too many things I'd consider getting first (like backups, vintages, or new discount luxury niche fragrances), in and around that price before I'd consider picking up Dior Sauvage Elixir. However, for someone with different priorities in this hobby than me, or just flat-out enough disposable income for it to be an inconsequential purchase, Dior Sauvage Elixir is a lovely pickup. In the end, what we see is a darker, denser, more (comparatively) natural Sauvage, made on an older-style fragrance template, but still beholden to modern materials availability and IFRA regulations. If that sounds interesting to you, and worth the stiff admission price, then go for it. Dior Sauvage is something like an IPA to beer lovers, whereas the Elixir is more like a super dark porter or stout, with the middle-concentrations being sweeter and smoother like lagers or wheat beers. It's all still Sauvage, but now comes in many flavors and strengths, but most importantly: Sauvage now comes in more variety and "quality" ranges than Bleu de Chanel. Before we go letting Demachy pat himself on the back, we still need to realize that scents like Elixir need not cost $155 for about half of what we can get for $100 elsewhere, and we let them shift the quality/price Overton window by not protesting with our buying dollars when they started this nonsense in the 1990's. All that aside, this is a fine little dark and stormy nü-gère, with the namesake wild streak still intact. Thumbs up
01st September, 2021
I'll second everything Jack Hunter has said in his review below this one.

This stuff is very well blended and is, at least according to my nose, composed of high quality ingredients. I would particularly call out the lavender, which has a big, 1980s Fougere quality that makes this scent smell elegant and well suited for mature, elegant folks. But the scent also works for me, and no one has ever mistaken me for elegant. The rich, smooth sandalwood also deserves praise for the way it smells and for how it acts as a bridge from the heart to the base of the fragrance. I am comfortable with the price/value relationship here, but some folks will doubtless feel this scent is too expensive for a mainstream designer release. I am looking forward to cooler days because I think this scent will really shine in cool to cold conditions. Recommended.
01st September, 2021
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Dior has hit the ball right out of the park with this one. It smells fantastic, really classy and sexy!

I get a dash of grapefruit in the opening and then a super smooth dose of milky chocolatey cardamom. There is a hint of sweetness and then the lavender does something special to this scent. Especially when it mixes with the nutmeg, you get that roasty woody vibe.

The scent is quite complex and after the first few hours it really opens up from the heavy cardamom which moves into the background. The lavender with grapefruit and woods, licorice, cinnamon move into the front seat all mixed together as one.

The first two hours the projection and sillage is amazing on me a real room filler. Then it settles down to within arms length but is very noticeable. The longevity is 12 hours plus into the next day on my skin.

The smell is just wonderful and you can pick apart the notes even though they are mixed together. The sandalwood in this is really good and almost creamy. The scent seems to go through many transitions on the skin. And it smells really classy and seductive. All in all I'm impressed, a stellar release from Dior.

27th August, 2021