Naomi Goodsir Or du Serail Eau de Parfum opens with ripened, fresh fruits that were juicy and crisp with mango and davana as the standouts in the bouquet. There was some booziness that ran through it, but it was short-lived. Sweet tobacco and a honeyed aspect soon emerged, but everything started to blur together after two hours of wear and became difficult to really tease out nuances by the fourth hour. It seemed to live primarily as a honeyed fruit fragrance with a hint of tobacco, then musk, and then woodiness at the end.
Or du Serail Notes
It is inspired by “a rich, voluptuous, and facetted tobacco” and described as a “gourmand and textured perfume, evocative of a golden tobacco” and is an “ambery, woody, musky, and greedy composition.” The brand doesn’t list many notes, but retailers include the following notes:
- top notes: cistus, apple and red fruits, mango, rum, sweet orange, davana, sage
- heart notes: beeswax, coco, geranium, ylang-ylang, Turkish tobacco, amber
- base notes: labdanum, oak tree, cedarwood, musk, vanilla, mate
What does Or du Serail Smell Like?
The orange was the first fruit in what slowly became a well-blended bouquet of fruity notes; a slightly crisp, red apple and the juicy sweetness of mango soon followed with davana diffusing and bringing the fruits together. The davana did such a stellar job of blending fruity notes together without adding sweetness and gave them a great backdrop. There was an undercurrent of boozy rum that gave the bouquet of fruit more body.
Sweet tobacco and a subtle honeyed facet seeped through the boozy bouquet of lush fruit, drenching it with golden syrup, while the tobacco intensified and helped to tamp down the additional sweetness the honeyed facet brought with it. It remained ripened with fruit, honeyed, with the tobacco hitting its greatest strength at the two-hour mark and then dying down by the fourth hour, which was when there was an undercurrent of musk, sort of blurring everything together, with oak tones.
It lasted for five hours until it was a skin-scent and about eight hours before it was quite difficult to detect on my skin. The sillage and projection were light from the beginning.
I’m always fascinated by how a perfume can have so many notes and then they get lost on my skin at times, or you wonder how they end up interacting in the ways that you don’t pick up, because surely they are there, even if not distinctive! This ran a little too sweet for my personal tastes, and if it was my kind of perfume profile, I would have liked to have seen greater longevity to be purchase-worthy.
These are more subjective feelings based on what I like (or don’t like) in a perfume as well as considering the fragrance against other perfumes I own and love.
For testing, I used 1/3 of a 0.7ml sample vial dabbed to the underside and topside of my wrist area. I used an unscented moisturizer prior to applying the scent as I found scent did not hold well here otherwise.
I purchased my sample in February 2022; fragrances are known to be reformulated over their lifetime, so be mindful of when a review was made, e.g. a review from 2010 may not reflect what the same-named perfume smells like in 2022.
Or du Serail is available for $187/50ml.
If possible, I highly recommend trying a fragrance before purchasing a full bottle because fragrance can wear differently just because of skin chemistry. Skin chemistry can effect not just the longevity of a fragrance but also what notes are prominent or hidden.
Or du Serail Samples
We recommend the following retailers for purchasing decanted samples (typically 0.7ml to 2ml in size). This is a fuller list, so individual availability may depend on inventory.