Serge Lutens • Tubéreuse Criminelle • Fragrances
|Would buy this product again.||62%|
Age: 36-43 Skin: Normal, Olive Hair: Brunette Eyes: Hazel
To the exception of Shiseido's mythic Nombre Noir, I can't think of anything that exudes high class and mystery as much as Serge Lutens Tubereuse Criminelle.
Edgy yet extremely stylish, timeless and classy. Think Tilda Swinton in Haider Ackermann.
Age: 44-55 Skin: Combination, Medium, Warm Hair: Black, Curly, Medium Eyes: Brown
I can't match the eloquence of many previous posters here. With the exception of Antica Farmacista's Casablanca le Parfum I'm not too much of a soloflore lover. But...as TC and Carnal Flower are well known as "sexual napalm", I couldn't resist ordering a decant of both. Suffice it to say that my hubby pronounced both fragrances as " too smelly, and not subtle enough." Note: He's normally not to picky about my fragrances. Oh well, back to Cartier's Heure Mysterieuse.
Age: 25-29 Skin: Oily, Fair, Cool Hair: Blond, Straight, Medium Eyes: Hazel
Bleugh...metallic medicine smell. Instand heachache. Not for me!
Age: 36-43 Skin: Normal Hair: Brown Eyes: Hazel
I nevu tawt I'd wuv a tubewose!!
This perfume is a wild one.
First you get what I'd describe as Drano under the thumb of tuberose. This odd refreshing + narcotic combo lasts some time.
Next, after the wintergreen/drano thing burns off, I find myself smelling like some ultrariche milled soap tubereuse. I love soapy fragrances and you cant' do better than that here.
Finally the soap component is off and away and you've got this transparent rather light tuberose that is just clear as a bell.
What fun! Usually I am not up for wearing anything targeted specifically to either gender, but I very much enjoy not being a girl whilst doing this supposedly parfum de femme. It really doesn't strike me as "womanly" and certainly not, as can be the case with T-flower, "matronly"
I love a good linear fragrance that delivers, but here I get 3 in one. Unbeatable. But wait there's one snag. The longevity is not exactly "party hardy" it gets very delicate on me after a not very long while. So...I think I'll just start spraying it less on my skin more on my shirt.
About the drano lol I've smelled wintergreen in high concentrations in other perfumes and been immediately put off. Now I wonder if I ought not to revisit some of them. After all, Drano is a pretty great smelling product. I've always felt people should get over the lemon oil = Pledge problem (although I concede that like most hard core perfumisto/as, I'm not prone to great excitement over wearing citruses...)
SL bottles. It's a drag when you have them lined up in proud formation and they go keeling over like dominos, ain't it? Some vexations are worth putting up with . . . though....
Age: 36-43 Skin: Combination, Olive, Cool Hair: Brown, Curly, Medium Eyes: Brown
Upon application of this fragrance, I learnt that tuberose is not my smell, at all. It had enormous staying power, which is good and bad. Bad because I wanted to be rid of the aroma, but good, because if you like tuberose, you may love Tubereuse Criminelle.
It had easily identifiable layers, and softened after about an hour - much like the opening of petals to reveal the gift of the flower.
I've read that some people get a camphor/methol hit on application, but I didn't (thank god), perhaps because of my skin's chemistry with this perfume.
I'd say worth a try if you love tuberose, but steer clear if not. Spray in-house or purchase a tester first. I think it runs the risk of the user morphing into a wealthy lady from a country estate, spraying her life away for a church service in the summer of 1876.
Age: 44-55 Skin: Sensitive, Fair Hair: Red Eyes: Blue
The opening of this one is original and distinct: like grape jelly and eucalyptus. Medicinal notes that contrast the sticky sweetness of tuberose. But as it dries down, it loses that potency, and becomes more like all the other SL white florals (i.e.: Fleurs d'Oranger, Sarrasins...). Which is why I wouldn't buy it again.
Age: 36-43 Skin: Oily, Fair, Warm Hair: Red, Wavy, Medium Eyes: Hazel
This is certainly a divisive fragrance, but I'm happy enough to be on my side of the divide because it means I'm not likely to meet another woman wearing it. I LOVE it: I love the opening blast that repulses so many, I love the unfolding of it, and I love its surprisingly whispery drydown. The beginning is wintergreen on me: Sweet, dark, icy. Then the tuberose really unleashes its seductive glory, and I'm reliving tropical nights. Truly unique for a fragrance is that it's cold and hot at the same time.
Age: 44-55 Skin: Combination, Fair-Medium Hair: Brunette Eyes: Brown
Serge Lutens's creations have eluded me so far. Despite spending much of my last trip to Paris visiting his gorgeous jewel of a shop in the Palais Royal and walking around the neighborhood sniffing my arm in search of the ONE, I left empty-handed. I don't remember testing TC, fixed as I was on La Myrrhe- but that's another story.
I believe in serendipity, in the alignment of the moon and stars, in sheer good luck, what have you. And that is exactly what happened when a month ago I began to crave tuberose and went searching for one which would not turn into a monster on my skin (Fracas), make me nauseous (Noix de Tubereuse) or give me a headache (Carnal Flower). During that time I bought fresh tuberoses by the bunch and placed them in my bathroom. Keeping the blossoms locked in a small space occasionally heated by the warm water of baths and showers brought out every facet of this flower, and I began to understand its complexity. Namely, this powerfully mentholated/rubberized side to the scent which is at least as present as the sweet creamy white center typically extracted and highlighted in tuberose perfumes. Carnal Flower is most definitely the closest rendition of a true tubereuse flower, in that sense. Unfortunately, on my skin the green/eucalyptus facet becomes a spike that will not leave me be. It never dulls, never allows the gentler aspects of the blossom through. Eventually I end up with a huge headache and can't wait to scrub it off.
The serendipitous event mentioned above was the simultaneous release of TC for general consumption, coinciding with my tuberose search. Bingo. The much-discussed gasoline/vicks vaporub accord lasts maybe 5 minutes on my skin. Yes, there is a smell of liniment, but it's absolutely not bothersome unless you happen to hate wintergreen. The remainder of the scent is mostly orange blossom on me. A very clean, very grown-up orange blossom without its usual honeyed accord. I love it. Unlike what the reviews and name would lead one to believe, this is actually quite a gentle scent and stays close to my skin. I don't get any of the styrax or vanilla in the drydown, which is strange because my skin usually pulls vanilla to the forefront.
At any rate, this one is joining the collection in a full bottle on its way from Luckyscent. I love to wear it to bed. TC feels very much "me" and is an easy scent to wear. Is it a huge compliment getter? No. It's a bit too weird for that. We all need scents that are there to keep the world at bay (in a good way. Nobody mentioned BO here). One of my dearest friends wears Passage D'Enfer exactly when she is in that mood. I really think Tubereuse Criminelle will become the equivalent scent for me.
Try TC even if you think you hate tuberose or white blossoms in general. And if you do love tuberose, you should definitely give this one a whirl.
Age: 30-35 Skin: Sensitive, Fair-Medium Hair: Brown Eyes: Blue
In general, I suppose I'm not a tuberose kind of gal--Fracas is way too much for me, and Beyond Love is nice and pretty but that's all (certainly not enough to justify the outrageous price tag). Noix de Tubereuse is just a powdery "hmm, whatever." I admit that I haven't yet tried Carnal Flower, which is the other "big one."
But I don't really feel compelled to. This is the tuberose for me. I'm ecstatic that it's briefly available in the export line and I snapped up a bottle ASAP--thinking about going for another one before it's gone again.
TC, like everyone says, opens with an unpleasant blast, though not as awful as I was led to believe. There's definitely menthol and camphor, and, yes, the faint odor of gasoline (though it's far from overpowering). It really doesn't take long to dry down: 10 minutes on me, max. Then I get an absolutely beautiful white floral. It's not hot or cloying like Fracas, and it's far more interesting than Beyond Love or Noix, perhaps because the menthol fades into a faint wintergreen. This gives the tuberose an edge that never really goes away.
Tubereuse Criminelle should definitely appeal to real lovers of tuberose, since the flower is unmistakeably in there. It's also great for unbelievers like me, as well as anyone else who appreciates unusual fragrances. Get it while you can!
Age: 19-24 Skin: Combination Hair: Brown, Medium Eyes: Brown
Tuberose normally makes me nauseous, but the menthol sharpens it here and makes it much more palatable. There's a slightly buttery, musky note that I wish was more amplified, and I think buying a menthol scent in general is a difficult decision. Nevertheless, this is SL's most interesting white floral.
Age: 36-43 Skin: Normal, Fair-Medium Hair: Brown Eyes: Hazel
Unexpected, soothing, wonderful, fleeting, fragile, addicting… That’s my Tubéreuse Criminelle. Your mileage may vary.
All white flowers have what I call the “Dorian Gray issue”: a sweet, angelic, innocent beauty concealing a portrait of filthy facets – bestial, animalic, bloody, shitty, rubbery… or, as in the particular case at hand, mentholated.
While Dorian Gray hid, and eventually destroyed, his foul portrait, Tubéreuse Criminelle unapologetically parades the medicinal and mentholated facets of tuberose absolute: the fragrance opens on an icy green puff of minty liniments and a bit of gasoline for lift.
It is a cold, medicinal smell that evolves slowly, allowing the tuberose flower to unfurl sweet white petal after petal. It’s like looking at those slow motion movies that reveal the progression of natural phenomena at an unusual reduced pace.
I love medicinal smells: I find them relaxing - so I find Tubéreuse Criminelle’s sinister opening quite pleasant, with a cooling, focusing quality to it (No rubber, no blood, just a oddly comforting ointment vibe). The opening does not read as perfume to me, but I actually enjoy smelling like body salve + tuberose for while.
Christopher Sheldrake, the nose behind this 1999 Serge Lutens exclusive fragrance, once stated: “the only criminal thing about Tubéreuse Criminelle is the opening”. Whether smelling like body salve is an actual crime against perfumery or not, the tuberose flower that emerges from the initial stage is surprisingly clean, and beautiful, and mildly sweet. Kept cold by the green mentholated undercurrent, it is not particularly creamy, but feels soft and welcoming, delicate even, and heart-breakingly pretty. The flowers fade away as gradually as they came, leaving you desperate for more. Like in “A la nuit”, another favorite Serge Lutens of mine, the “decrescendo” in the volume of the fragrance is quite dramatic (too much, if you ask me. Not to mention the cruel lack of a real base). But I’m addicted; I apply five or six dabs to bring out the fabulous floral heart, and passionately love Tubéreuse Criminelle with all its faults, its strangeness and its compelling beauty.
It is not your usual perfume, and it does not smell like one.
Age: 56 & Over Skin: Normal, Fair, Warm Hair: Brunette, Wavy, Fine Eyes: Brown
A desert island scent..the ethereal blast of camphor-liniment (its actually the thing we used to rub on our joints to psyche up for athletics) completely knocks you out of orbit...only to reassure with the most lovely of earthy heavenly sweet tuberose...this alien creature is high art of the most sublime...it has been created, and can not be uncreated...
I have to revisit this review, I have been put into the invidious position of having to choose between this monument and Mitsouko as being the last and only frag I could ever smell. I have thought in the last few years of studying perfume that they played on words with this, created soon after Angel came out...and regarding the athletics liniment...I used to be a bit of a jock in my teenage years, and the first inhalation of this just whacked me back to an athletics track, marked with lime, the cold winter winds wafting the odour of liniment and the forbidden beauty of muscular boys and everything that meant.
Age: 25-29 Skin: Sensitive, Fair-Medium, Cool Hair: Black, Wavy, Medium Eyes: Brown
If the brief for Tubéreuse Criminelle had been "revision Fracas for contemporary tastes", Serge Lutens could not have done better, for here the classic has been clarified into its essentials. The notorious chemical top, often likened to menthol or gasoline, is for me part and parcel with the humid and waxy tuberose heart, as true to life as if one were entering a thicket of night-blooming tuberoses next to a busy superhighway. The harsh chemical opening soon fades into a residue of green frost (as well as, I swear, an earthy hint of patchouli), allowing the indolic opulence of white flowers to take center stage, but these are not the orchestral arrangements of Fracas: tuberose first with a creamy dose of jasmine for support, softened further vanilla-and-banana-cream sweetness and feral musk, growing increasingly silken and yielding in the drydown—indeed, very sexy. For all its naturalistic glory, Tubéreuse Criminelle is not as accurate a soliflore as Frédéric Malle's Carnal Flower, which employs a combination of living headspace technology with an unprecedented 70% natural tuberose extract, much more smiling and solar, shot through with a fresh streak of green sweetness. For obvious reasons, Tubéreuse Criminelle is often compared to its contemporary (Carnal Flower) and predecessor (Fracas), but substantially altered in mood, a sinister opacity rather heedless of Austen's scathing little aside that "imbecility in females is a great enhancement of their personal charms" (Northhanger Abbey). Fracas is a dizzy, sweet, and SEX-SEX-sexy blonde—it reminds me always of Marilyn Monroe, in spite of the No.-5 connection, she did wear Fracas—while Tubéreuse Criminelle is a badass brunette not a whit less indecently voluptuous. I always think of that scene where a very young Castorp approaches his grandfather's casket, piled with tuberoses, and reflects that in spite of the pomp and ceremony he was still dead, not as grand as he seemed in life.
Age: 30-35 Skin: Very Oily, Fair, Cool Hair: Blond, Straight, Fine Eyes: Blue
Last summer, while on vacation, I made a pilgrimage to the Salons du Palais Royal boutique to choose and buy one of the exclusives. I tried 3 on smelling strips: Miel de Bois, Un Lys, and Tubéreuse Criminelle. I quickly ruled out Miel de Bois, and tried Un Lys on one arm, and TC on the other. The sales associate told me to take a walk around the Palais Royal to allow the fragrances time to develop. I did. To me, Un Lys was pretty ho-hum, but on the other arm something insane was happening. Everything you've heard about the initial blast is true. I personally don't smell blood, rubber or gasoline, but there is a distinct wintergreen/root beer candy smell that is just too out there. But I couldn't stop smelling! After about 10 minutes the wintergreen slowly fades out. What's left behind is a breathtakingly realistic tuberose and orange blossom, so real that it's confusing to look down and see an arm instead of flowers. I do get a faint whiff of indoles, but it's quite faint, and I think it adds to the realism. Some people don't like white flower scents. I do. When they're done well, they're good for the soul. This one is done particularly well. Needless to say, I bought it and enjoy it frequently.
Age: 30-35 Skin: Combination, Fair-Medium Hair: Red Eyes: Hazel
If I wanted to buy a floral perfume nowadays, I think this would be it. It has a wintergreen / vicks opening but once it dries, it settles to a bright, clean and clear prologue that slightly reminds me of the sparkling opening of my perhaps no.1 serge lutens - and my only full purchase- La Myrrhe -that one sunnier and more cheerful with fennel. The heart is a clear and elegant flower receiving a lovely, harmonious support from orange blossom and jasmine. Nevertheless, they do not struggle for the center stage at all. I'm not very fond of floral fragrances and cannot handle too many flowers at the same time. On me, Tubereuse Criminelle is not like that at all. It is serene, peaceful and very very elegant while managing to be intimate and amicable at the same time. I have come across such clarity in Van Cleef's new floral offerings, but Tubereuse Criminelle blends with my skin better.
Age: 44-55 Skin: Oily, Fair Hair: Brown Eyes: Brown
This one definitely gets a "5" for quality, beauty and most definitely originality. Like most tuberoses, it is a diva and not everyone's cup of tea, but it is not nearly as scary as some of the reviews suggested. It opens, admittedly, on a strange menthol note, closed followed by a bite of wintergreen (don't overspray). I understand what others mean by "gasoline" note but I wouldn't describe it as such. In a few moments, the white lady tuberose arrives. And an elegant white lady she is! This reminds me of a couture fragrance. Elegant, supremely feminine and demanding an audience. It's not quite the vamp that Fracas is, though. This one is more cool elegance than buttery sensuality. I love it; it has just one more test to pass: will or will it not set off dh's allergies as many big white florals do? I will keep you posted...;
Age: 36-43 Skin: Combination, Fair-Medium Hair: Brunette Eyes: Brown
Peppermint and mothball white flowers. Smells like medicine. Nasty. I had to scrub this. The clove and styrax make it smell like Tiger Balm, but with the unfortunate addition of mothball jasmine. Argh.
Age: 19-24 Skin: Sensitive, Medium, Warm Hair: Black, Straight, Fine Eyes: Black
I like controversial, difficult scents, so I have been eyeing this one for a long time. I finally caved and ordered it, expecting a huge camphorous, menthol opening and was a little underwhelmed. I didn't get the dreaded gasoline and rubber notes either, if anything it is just minty, refreshing and dries down to a beautiful, cool and wearable tuberose after an hour or so. I don't know how real tuberose smells like, but this one smells less synthetic and overpowering like the others I have tried (Carnal Flower, Tubereuse Indiana, Poison, Carolina Herrera). I admire this scent but I don't like wearing it. I have since swapped my bottle away but kept a small decant, just in case I change my mind.
Age: 25-29 Skin: Dry, Fair, Warm Hair: Brown, Straight, Fine Eyes: Blue
Amazing... so the beginning notes are quite unlikeable, but have some faint nostalgia for me...
the smell is of an old-lady's house, slight dank mothball odor... quickly turning into a rich, sweet tuberose, underscored by orange blossom and blooming jasmine...
I do agree with perfumesmellingthing's blog review by Tom in that it is a tuberose held in 'bondage', the after smell is a faint leather, like the lingering aroma of a leather jacket.
Quite perfect, and it is my favorite tuberose I've smelled to this day!!! I do love AbdesSalaam Attar's Tuberosa as a very, very close second, and to give the latter more merit, it is perfectly pure and preserved, the freshest of the original tuberose scents, however the mintiness at the beginning seems to last a long time, and the tuberose is a faint, wispy breeze, albeit a totally gorgeously, beautiful one.
I would have to say the beauty of tubereuse criminelle is much more mysterious, perfect for a weird girl like myself, who likes weird for the sake of weird, just because it's interesting. I'm IN LOVE.....
Age: Unknown Skin: Sensitive, Fair, Cool Hair: Other, Straight, Fine Eyes: Hazel
I’m not sure what’s criminal about this unless it’s the menthol - perhaps Lutens had unhappy associations with bad girls who smoked Kools? When I first got a sample I found it fascinating, and subsequently did the jumping through hoops routine that one must to get a bottle, since it’s a Paris exclusive. I was disappointed that the menthol opening (sometimes also described as ‘gasoline’, ‘asphalt’, and ’mothballs’, just so you know what you’re in for here) disappeared quickly but with subsequent wearings I’ve learned to follow the menthol as it develops into tuberose; it’s not really gone, it’s just morphing into crispness, making the tuberose aloof instead of cloying. I don’t wear it out and about much but it’s one of my favorite bedtime scents; I find its coolness comforting. Hubby says I smell like a trucker, of diesel and road tar, but I don’t mind and what does he know of truckers anyway?