Hermes • Ambre Narguile (Hermesessence series) • Fragrances
|Would buy this product again.||74%|
Age: 30-35 Skin: Other Hair: Other Eyes: Other
In a sea of dreck and the downright mediocre, Ambre Narguile stands out as one of the few modern masterpieces of perfumery. How can a scent be elegant, striking and perhaps a little intimidating, yet as cosy and as comfortable as an old pair of slippers at the same time? Ambre Narguile manages it. Although reports of its strength, longevity and complex array of what to some are quite challenging notes might make one think this a 'difficult' scent to pull off and that you might possibly reek - fear not! Ellena's genius makes AN as sheer as a pair of the best silk stockings. You won't find any of the 'beat you over the head' heft of tobacco, cinnamon, labdanum, musk, vanilla, tonka etc here that you can find in lesser quality scents, AN is so well blended that this scent is as comfortable as a second skin. Does it smell like apple pie? Maybe a little when first sprayed but as the scent progresses there is so much of interest to enjoy that it is difficult to stop sniffing your wrist, just try to avoid doing it in public, which can take some willpower! It is a sheer rhapsody of apples stewed in rum, raisins and honey, with a thread of the finest tobacco weaving through from start to finish, which is always some hours away due to its quality. All the way through, AN is as smooth as the finest cognac. Can you tell I adore this scent?!? Bravo Hermes and bravo Monsieur Ellena for this magnificent elixir!
Age: 25-29 Skin: Combination, Tan, Warm Hair: Brown, Relaxed, Fine Eyes: Brown
I finally understand why this fragrance receives so many great reviews. I first heard about this scent when a YouTube "guru" mentioned it as her favorite scent. Since I have no access to a Hermes store anywhere near where I live, I called Hermes customer service and they kindly sent me two Ambre Narguile samples. Once on my skin I get a sharp fruity scent with tobacco. It first applies like a gourmand but dries down to a lovely warm fruity tobacco. I wouldn't say that this scent transforms or that different notes appear at different times. Basically it goes on strong and then fades into transparency but the notes stay the same for the duration. If you like the scent of a just smoked, fruit laden, fine cigar then you'll adore this scent. It's one of the most unique perfume scents I've ever come across. This one is definitely going to be added onto my wish list. Thankfully, I have enough samples to last me for a while. Highly recommend!
Age: 36-43 Skin: Combination, Fair Hair: Brunette, Straight, Fine Eyes: Brown
A little backstory here: my relationship with perfumes started very early and has changed a lot during the decades. When I started to get “serious” about them, gourmands were already a trend, so I ended up trying most of them, buying a lot and getting bored a few years later. The truth, as awful as it may be, is: I don’t like gourmand scents that much now… I don’t even like to eat sugar, smelling like it sounds non-sense to me.
So, after downsizing and rebuilding my collection (there as still some gourmands I love, but I really don’t reach for them very often), comes Hermes Ambre Narguile. As a self-confessed Jean-Claude Ellena fan, I just had to try it. And, even not loving gourmands that much at the moment, I have to say this one is a beauty (and one of the few ones I can pull off from time to time).
After sampling, I ended up ordering two small bottles as part of the Hermessences gift set, and I think 30ml will be more than enough for me. Maybe one day, if I manage to dry both of them, I change my mind and go for a big bottle, who knows?
If you managed to read my ramblings up to here, now comes the review!!!
Ambre Narguile is, as I said before, a gourmand. But the kind of gourmand that only Jean-Claude Ellena could do: sheer and transparent. Well, maybe not as transparent as the other Hermessences, but still part of the “family”.
Ambre Narguile features notes of: benzoin, labdanum, musk, vanilla, caramel, honey, sugared tonka bean, grilled sesame seeds, cinnamon, rum, coumarine and white orchids. It starts out boozy and sweet, almost reminding me of a freshly baked Apfelstrudel. It doesn’t make my mouth water (as I said, I don’t like sweets that much) but this opening would surely please the hardcore gourmand lovers.
After 30 minutes or so, it gets more interesting (at least for me). The Apfelstrudel finally cooled down, I can still get whiffs of it, but it doesn’t bother my hypoglycemic nose any longer. What I get is a nice blend of non-smoked pipe tobacco and dried fruits. My father used to smoke pipes and he had one which was cherry scented… it almost reminds me of it (here I am, rambling again, please stop me).
As I just said, the drydown is the most interesting part of this fragrance to me, with the pipe tobacco, dried fruits and a very nice amber undertone. Even if you are not a big fan of amber, it still deserves a try.
I see Ambre Narguile as a fall / winter sophisticated unisex scent. It may be too cloying for summer, but that’s just my opinion. The lasting power is very good and the projection, in cool weather, is moderate.
Age: 30-35 Skin: Oily, Olive Hair: Brunette Eyes: Hazel
YUM! the scent of honey. LOVE IT :)
Age: 30-35 Skin: Combination, Fair Hair: Blond Eyes: Blue
I feel like volume is just too high on this.
Starts our very much as others have described it - boozy apple pie. A very gourmand sweet smell with notes of apple, vanilla, raisin and bourbon. Delicious and very young smelling. Quick fades into a strong smokey tobaccoy, incense. Which reads not young. It's a strange disconnect to be honest. I would not recommend buying this on the initial impression as I think after 30 minutes this smells like a completely different perfume then the first 30 seconds.
After an hour this is almost purely smoky luscious incense. I like it. But the sillage and staying power is at maybe a 10, and has a tendency to really overpower people. Even a super light application - this still is A LOT. I can't imagine wearing this in summer... it might cause fainting!
I wish there was a lighter version of this with less sillage..
Age: 36-43 Skin: Other Hair: Other Eyes: Other
I was so scared to try this, as amber can go wonky on me. I finally got a sample of it and was floored by how incredibly delicious it was. Yes, it's a gourmand that manages to evoke the *feeling* of amber, rather than the scent. When I smell this, I can feel a hard piece of sun- warmed, polished amber in my hand. After a very brief interruption by cinnamon which leaves within 5 minutes, I instantly get the honey and caramel notes and they stay with me the entire time with this fragrance. The sesame and rum balance the scent nicely, keeping it from becoming overly sweet and I do catch the barest whiff of floral, must be the orchid.....but I truly mean just a breath. This scent lasts forever and is sophisticated, comforting, sweet, sexy and soft at the same time. Love it.
Age: 30-35 Skin: Combination, Fair Hair: Black Eyes: Brown
I ordered a sample from ebay because of some reviews on youtube, and I'm glad I ordered the small sample ($10) because I don't love it. I kept reading that it smelled like raisins, pastries, cinnamon, cognac, and other food like scents but to me, it has a very strong after shave smell to it. It also reminds of me of some asian oils/balms my mom uses. I definitely can smell the whole the eastern smokes thing. To me, it is definitely unisex. I think it is unique, rich and a lot of people seem to be deeply in love with it, so I recommend trying it, but I personally would not but am glad I tried such an interesting scent. I will update if the scent changes on my body on a different day.
Age: 30-35 Skin: Dry, Fair Hair: Brunette Eyes: Brown
I love, love, love this perfume. But the price is out of the question for this stay-at-home-mom's single income family budget. But how wonderful of Hermes to send a sample upon request.
Yes, I'd be wearing a super fancy expensive perfume while just being at home with the kids, possibly in sweats or jeans. But it makes me feel like a million bucks. It is so delicious and classy! It smells like a fresh baked apple pie and a cedar closet. Like taking your cozy sweater out of the cedar chest after storing it all summer and then wearing it while enjoying all the scents of autumn. Particularly apple pie.
Age: 19-24 Skin: Normal, Medium Hair: Brown Eyes: Blue
Overall this fragrance is best summed up as a gourmand that smells like a cinnamon and fruit pastry. Despite that description it's far more complex and definitely one of my favorites. The amber is this fragrance is more subtle despite the name and each component seems to play a part almost equally. It begins with a strong cinnamon and dried fruit with a background of amber.
This fragrance is more about food and if you like gourmands definitely give this one a try.
Age: 25-29 Skin: Combination, Fair-Medium, Warm Hair: Blond, Wavy, Medium Eyes: Blue
Notes: benzoin, labdanum, musk, vanilla, caramel, honey, sugared tonka bean, grilled sesame seeds, cinnamon, rum, coumarine and white orchids
This fragrance opens with an accord I cannot describe but gourmand. I smell cinnamon, caramel, vanilla and stewed fruit altogether, reminding me very much of home-made Apfelstrudel. Once the whirlwind of gourmand notes has settled, a high-pitched but not unpleasant vanilla note leads the other notes in a linear development that lasts for many hours. As the fragrance progresses, the pastry image fades and it becomes clear that everything was an olfactory illusion made of inedible spices, flowers and resins. This fragrance has excellent projection and - although a true comfort scent and undoubtedly exceedingly pleasant - should be applied sparingly. Lasts more than 4 hours on my skin.
Age: 19-24 Skin: Combination, Fair-Medium Hair: Brown Eyes: Brown
Kind of difficult to put a finger on exactly what I expect from something associated with the great fashion house Hermes. Whatever it is, it's not this. My first thoughts after applying were: Not for me, but I don't all together hate it. About ten minutes later I completely changed my mind: I alltogether hate it.
The best way I can describe Ambre Narguile is to say that it walks the line between ugly and pretty....and it walks it like a toddler...who is drunk...on milk that is so far gone it's alcoholic (this doesn't seem possible..). It's really more the line between small domestic animal urine and apple pie. There is obviously amber there, and a pretty heavy gourmand cinnamon/apple combo that would put me off from the beginning. But the real kicker...and this is going to sound pretty abstract...it smells like the smell of a person who (unconciously) lets their environment become their perfume. For example, houses that smell of only laundry and mac and cheese and kitty litter. Well there are those people who just sort of smell like weird coddled spoiled-milk-drinking children (well into their adult years) and you wonder what combination of events lead them to smell like that until you visit their house. It's the smell of a person who just doesn't care and I'm not a fan of those people. I guess in this way, it's too realistic of smell for me....or anyone. It might take a special special person to pull this off. I don't want to meet them. Unless it's Martha Stewart because I could really see that happening.
Sorry to everyone who apparently enjoys smelling of food.
It was disturbing enough that I walked out of my front door, locked it, jumped into my car, started the engine....and was so appalled by the way I smelled that I ran back into the house and doused myself in Kiehl's Musk. Even then, I still smell this absolutely bothersome perfume clawing its way out.
(See all my reviews at swigandtipple.blogspot.com)
Age: 44-55 Skin: Combination, Fair-Medium, Cool Hair: Black, Wavy, Medium Eyes: Green
I have not bought ambre narguile yet because I do not want to buy a bottle of 100 ml. The other alternative is to buy small bottles of 15 ml. Too bad they do not sell smaller bottles of 30 ml or 50 ml. For this reason I gave a 2 for the packaging. But the smell, well that a different story. It is fantastic !
I normally don´t like ambre smells but this it not like anything I have smelled before. I smelled the Ambre eau de toilette Jean Claude Elena made for L´artisan but I did not like that as much. Ambre Narguile go and smell it in a Hermes shop ! Superb !
Age: 19-24 Skin: Dry, Fair, Warm Hair: Brunette, Curly, Medium Eyes: Brown
This review is based on a sample vial, but I went ahead and said I would repurchase this product because I would love to eventually own a full bottle. When I'm not broke. (And it doesn't help that Hermes only offers 3.3 oz. bottles.) Ambre Narguile is described as, "Amber honey with swirls of smoke from the East," and that's EXACTLY what I get, or at least the amber honey most definitely. I'm actually really surprised to read all the reviews that describe this as spicy or gourmand or dessert-ish. I get a lovely, smooth-as-silk amber, with a little bit of sweetness and honey. I don't find this to be a spicy scent and can't think of a single dessert that smells like this. In fact, I put it on and think more floral than food. It's also fairly linear on my skin, which is fine by me because I love it beginning-to-end, and I love the daylong longevity. I do love the scent of amber, but usually I prefer it mixed with other scents, rather than the star player. So, I've sniffed and quite liked L'Artisan Ambre Extreme and Prada L'eau Ambree, but this is the first amber I would really like to have for myself, rather than just appreciate from a distance.
Age: 30-35 Skin: Other Hair: Other Eyes: Other
amazing. i wish it was more affordable.
Age: 44-55 Skin: Oily, Fair Hair: Brown Eyes: Brown
Ambre Narguile is a well-done amber. Although it is an amber, it has a sheer quality. I can't add to anything that hasn't been said. I can see how one can say it does have a spicy apple pie smell. From a distance, it does give off a powdery aura, if you like/dislike that. Even dabbed on my wrist, there is quite a bit of sillage to this one. It is towards the masculine side of the amber spectrum. It personally is not my style of fragrance (I lean towards florals and florientals). In general, I have not been overly fond of the Hermessence series. I feel they are tastefully done. Somehow Jean-Claude Ellena's sheer styles don't suit me; I prefer the richer Guerlain compositions. This gets four stars because my husband liked it. It does draw compliments; I think the gentle sillage is better than the up-close apple pie smell.
Age: 19-24 Skin: Combination, Fair-Medium, Neutral Hair: Blond, Kinky, Medium Eyes: Green
To me this smells just like apple pie that has been baking in the oven, it's a really mouth-watering, foody scent. I get cinnamon, vanilla, apples, pastry and sugar from this fragrance, just like a dessert. My only problem is that it's not really foody-sexy, more just foody-foody; I can imagine that people will probably think there is an actual pie stand somewhere nearby if I were to wear it (great silage). Think: I smell like a cinnamon apple strudel. So in that sense, this scent turns out not to be about sex, but food. It screams "eat me" but without any sexual connotations. It is so well blended that I struggle to pick out individual notes, so for me the overall impression is a very linear apple pie. People talk about the leathery, smoky, tobacco note but I can't pick that out. The best way to describe it in words is succulent, delectable, rich, warm, opulent and luxurious. It also has great lating power. I think it would be best suited to use in winter due to it's cozy, comforting nature - I can imagine wearing this snuggled up under a soft blanket watching a movie. I can somehow also imagine this on a man, which surprises me because I always thought foody = feminine. Perhaps somewhat worryingly, I can also imagine this as a room fragrance - I would love to open my door to this lovely scent pervading my house, (kitchen, bedroom, bathroom...) as it honestly does smell just like a cake baking in the oven, which is very homely and nostalgic for me. The bottom line is, while I would love my kitchen to exude this warm, cozy, yummy smell could I say the same about myself? I'm not too sure.
Age: 19-24 Skin: Normal, Medium Hair: Brunette Eyes: Blue
Ohhhhh Myyyyyy Goddddddd!!!! Now I understand why so many people love Ambre Narguile... Let me just say that I adore anything from the Hermessence series. I didnt think I would love this... I'm just not a huge fan of amber... it's too much for me. Believe me, even on the coldest winter day I tried to wear Ambre Sultan by Serge Lutens... no matter how much I tried to love it, I couldn't. It just wasn't me... I tried Ambre Narguile only because I received a sample of it from a wonderful swapper. First, I smell a trail of oriental spices and then an accord of... "vanilla ice cream over warm, cinnamon apple pie" kicks in. This note is so true and so darn delicious I cannot stop smelling my wrist. But the funny part is that there is a touch of yessss, AMBER all the way in the background... This amber is so intoxicating, narcotic almost... I cannot tell You how MUCH I love Ambre Narguile. Just the way I love Vetiver Tonka and I have never been crazy about vetiver either... If I could, I would drink Ambre Narguile straight out of a bottle... agh I don't want to poison myself:)
Age: 30-35 Skin: Acne-prone, Medium, Warm Hair: Black, Straight, Medium Eyes: Brown
I am loving Ambre Narguile - it's woody-ambre with a slight fruity-apple like note underneath. Wearing this in cold weather and it's putting me in such a good mood. The fruity note is delicious and is a nice contrast to the dry woody ambre. Cozy, comforting, and I want to get me some more.
Age: 30-35 Skin: Combination, Fair Hair: Brown Eyes: Hazel
The biggest issue I have with this scent is the price. Like their handmade bags, it's tres cher. It does come in a large 100ml bottle, so I'm sure there is value to the dollar, but I can't really justify spening that much money on something that might evaporate before I've had a chance to use it.
Unlike many other Hermes fragrances, this is only* available through select boutiques. I happen to live near one, but if you aren't one of the fortunate few, you're SOL.
The scent itself is amazing. It's definitely on the masculine end of the scale, so if you are looking for a flirty floral, you won't find it here. What you will get is a sweet, spicy, and rich sent that reminds me of the warmth one feels when drinking a good scotch. (Gosh, that sounds more pretentious than I meant.) Lots of honey too. Mmm.
My final complaint is the bottle. You don't need to be a marketing genius to know that in the world of perfume, the bottle is a big part of the draw. The entire Hermessence series looks bland bland bland.
Even if you are willing to shell out the extra $300 to get the leather-bound version, it's still just a plain rectangle with a lid. I want something sexier, like the Cadena shaped Caleche, or at least attache a cadena charm!
If you are broke like me, but can get yourself to a store, they do offer generous samples that can satisfy your yen for a long time, or until you win a lottery.
Age: 30-35 Skin: Normal, Fair Hair: Blond Eyes: Blue
I put Ambre Narguile on this morning, and a coworker came into the room and said "Woo, it smells like powder in here!" I was like "Wow, is it me?" and proferred my wrist for her to sniff. "Yes that's it...it smells different close up though," she said.
I was surpised that she got "powder" from Ambre Narguile, because what I get from it is a cinnamony, flaky pastry - one that is still a slightly soft and doughy in the middle. The amber in this is noticeable, but tweaked in a very pleasant way. The spicy/medicinal amber that is so common in many ambery niche fragrances is mercifully absent in Ambre Narguile; here it is gourmandized to be doughy and comforting. I do get a little tobacco (narguile = tobacco water-pipe), but I have to kind of "reach" for it with my scent imagination when I sniff.
One last thing. I agree with Luca Turin that this scent smells like a nod to Serge Lutens. There is a certain twist of ingredients here that's reminiscent of something common throughout SL's Chergui, Muscs Koublai Khan, etc. Interesting...and very yummy stuff.