I just checked the review I wrote (as Wyrmiax) when I first tried this. I thought it smelled muddy and sweaty and strange. Now, it's none of those things. No mud, no sweat, and not especially strange. It's like the EDP of L'Eau d'Hiver, but with a sweet skin musk instead of caramel. The heliotrope is less pronounced than it is in Hiver, but it provides a pleasant accent with the violet, making for an unusual musk fragrance.
I love violets and loved this in the store... gorgeous, transparent violets, laundry and a salty skin smell that tempered the sweetness. I liked it enough to make an impulse buy, which I don't usually with perfume. I couldn't stop sniffing it all day. What came out of the bottle I brought home with me, however, smelled like a sweaty armpit that dried out and was then sprayed with cheap perfume on top. I don't know if I got a bad batch or what but I've only worn it a handful of times since buying it and might actually hate it.
With Frederic Malle’s Dans Tes Bras, Maurice Roucel wanted to recreate the scent of warm, salty skin… mission accomplished! Dans Tes Bras means “in your arms” and the name suits it perfectly: it is a very intimate, personal fragrance. To me, it’s like having my soul rubbed on my skin’s surface. For this reason, I don’t see it as a crowd pleaser, but maybe I am wrong here, who knows.
How does it smell like? At first sniff, violets. But not the kind of powdery violets we usually find in perfumes. This violet is metallic, adstringent, almost an alien, but also beautiful in its own weirdness. It’s almost like it grew up in the same kind of soil that would only grow mushrooms. I’m not a garden person, I don’t even know if this is possible. All my life, I’ve only seen violets in vases.
As the scent dries down, the violets become more subdued, but never leave the stage. The cashmeran takes over, though, and this may be a deal breaker for some people: Dans Tes Bras, in the drydown, is a cashmeran overdose disguised as a perfume. The result is a salty skin scent, not exactly sweat-salty, but like clean, sundried skin after a bath in the ocean. Is it beachy? Well, only if you see the island of “Lost” as the perfect place for a tropical resort.
Dans Tes Bras needs to be handled with caution. It has lots of silage and one of the best lasting powers I’ve ever seen. It will also transfer to almost anything you touch and stay there forever (or at least until washing).
The notes include: bergamot, clove, violet, jasmine, sandalwood, patchouli, incense, cashmeran, heliotrope and white musk. I don’t see it fitting in a scent group box, but it wouldn’t be wrong calling it a woody-violet scent, grounded with a lot of musk. It is dry without being powdery, it is a skin scent, but it is “loud” (in terms of silage). Some say it is the most “intellectual” of the Malle’s, I say it is a paradox.
I love this, it fits my skin and personality perfectly. I am 17 years old, I really love to be outside, I'd say that I'm sophisticated but I am not grown up enough to wear many of the perfumes that I like. (Une Fleur De Cassie, Iris Poudre)
On me, this smells like walking in the woods and smelling violets and getting a tiny bit sweaty (not in a body odour way, but salty skin). It smells lovely and natural and melds with my skin. It doesn't have tons of sillage which I like, it's really easy to apply. 2 squirts is the perfect amount. Full bottle worthy for me.
I'm not one for subtle perfume with low sillage. This is, in many ways, an overpriced skin-scent. Sometimes it deserves full marks and at other times it's held back a year. It's not really 'me' -- but I enjoy it.
So I'll be a sport and review the full marks version. Gothic girls will love this if they smell what I smell. I'm talking quiet, bookish, grown-up gothic girls -- not necessarily the goth-next-door. It's much better than Messe de Minuit because, on my skin, DTB has a similar emotional vibe (don't let my language lose you here!) but with more of an interest factor. DTB's more crypt-like, damp and earthy than the Etro. Not projection heavy, it wears close to the skin and in about an hour becomes a charmingly synthetic musky skin scent to which I'm sometimes (sadly) anosmic. Lasting power for a niche perfume is dire -- that usually makes me take a lippie or two off...but...it's Roucel, it's conceptual, intellectual, ephemeral, artificial and natural all at once -- and you can try it and not buy it...so.... The cashmeran-blond-woods-muskiness is obvious in the dry down and, to me, from time to time, more significant than the ever-so-slightly-salted-violet aspect.
The synthetic and the natural are comfortable together, taking turns. Sometimes I smell it and think 'modern, artificial, almost ozonic (yes, I said the dreaded 'O' word) intellectual' and at other times (usually the first 15-30 minutes) I think 'naturally aged, end-stage decay, sweet, cerebral'. So either way, it's clever. It's a puzzler. That's one of the main reasons I can't give it anything less than full marks: it keeps me guessing, wondering whether I did the right thing in wearing it, trying to catch each stage of the change, thinking: is it hormones? is it perception, is it anosmia (sometimes a huge issue, I suspect it's the cashmeran) -- that makes this fragrance so hard to pin down? Has Roucel pulled a fast one on me because he knows I like his work? Is this a creation experiment gone horribly wrong...but on the second take, has an incredibly beautiful face? Does DTB want to be human, does she really? Does she need to be defined?
The rest of the review discusses more associations, not so much with other scents but with random things: characters, films, mental images and so on.
First time I smelled it, it smelled of mildew and violets. Brilliant! The cashmeran was in the backgorund and all I got was the surreal image of violets growing in a crypt, covered in a fungal caul. I almost saw the salt-dusted violets shimmer with life under a shroud of fungus. Beautiful. Very 'life vs. death'. It wasn't decay so much as 'a taking over'. But then I considered 'the decay aspect' -- it's more like the aftermath of the ripe, rotten period of decay, when all that remains is a musty shadow of the original organism. Peter Greenaway's wonderful time-lapse shots of decomposition from A Zed and Two Noughts flashed in my mind. Magic!
Then the scent develops. After the stealth-fungus, something amazing happens: the violets rise from the stone floor of the crypt, break through a carpet of mould and stretch up into the dark. For me it's a fragrance with two vivid, visually antithetical notes struggling for supremacy. I didn't put my money on the violets, but they win, eventually driving the mould underfoot. A perfect dirty-pretty dance.
This is Marla in Fight Club smoking a cigarette. Wearing a second-hand, one dollar bridesmaid's dress. Talking about Christmas trees and sex crime victims on the roadside. Dan Tes Bras is something you might find down the rabbit hole...if you took a wrong turn.
And with a shrug, Marla said, "Slide..."
It isn't overtly floral but it's a bit too sweet for me and it smells slightly soapy, which is one of my least favorite perfume notes. It is soft and elegant, sophisticated. There is nothing cheap or brash about this scent, it just isn't the right one for me.
Dans tes Bras is a very strange fragrance. I can barely describe it, so please bear with me. The opening is a burst of earthy, pungent violets. It is not a crowd-pleaser, so I usually let it settle before I go out. The drydown is heavenly and mysterious and unusual. The quality of this scent is evident in the drydown, which brings in a soft skin-like musk that never veers into cheap white musk territory. Slightly salty and woody, the violets always remain prominent. The strangest part of Dans Tes Bras is its texture, which I can only describe as waxy yet soft, like the residue of a scented candle you were just holding.
This is a scent that I would never have thought to try on my own, but thanks to the aggressive spritzes of an SA, I discovered Dans Tes Bras. While I thought it was too strange at first, a few hours later, I was entraced by the scent wafting up from my wrist, and I'm very glad I sought it out again.
Having just purchased a bottle of Musc Ravageur, I was given a sample of Dans Tes Bras.
Which I found to be tepid and all over the place. The copy is beautifully written and evocative of cafes and tea-shops. I do wish the perfume came close to emulating the warmth of the advertising copy but instead we have a perfume that is lacklustre and charmless. The inital notes are acrid and smell vaguely of chemicals and it didn't get better in the middle and base notes. I couldn't wait to scrub my wrists.
Marcel Roucel concocted THIS? Much sniffing couldn't detect the many accords listed in the chart. All I found was insipidity.
By what irony do the perfumes you don't care for linger on in a way than the ones you really like - seldom do?
For me, Dans Tes Bras is a rare clunker in the Frederic Malle line up. But with all perfumes, I try to remember that much of it is skin chemistry and subjectivity. Each to his or her own...
I don't know that much about perfumes as far as the fancy lingo I just know that I like this. I got this as a sample and it is sexy. I can detect bergamont which is one of my favorite notes. This exudes pure sex. DH loved it as well. I don't detect any floral notes just spicy, sexy fabulousness. LOVE IT!!!!
Eww, at first application smelled like florally animal pee. The first minute was tough! Softened with the dry down. Salty and pungent- like a closed room after a night of wild sex. A bit metallic. As it wore, it was more & more pleasant and even sexy right close to the body. But ultimately, not for me due to the parts I don't like.