L'Artisan Fragrances Timbuktu EDT

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85 reviews

45% would repurchase

Package Quality: 3.8

Price: $$$

Package Quality: 3.8

Price: $$$


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on 8/19/2016 10:34:00 PM

Age: 44-55

Skin: Combination, Olive, Neutral

Hair: Brown, Curly, Medium

Eyes: Brown

Notes: green mango, pink pepper berries, cardamom, karo karounde flower, smokey incense of papyrus wood, patchouli, myrrh, vetiver (from luckyscent.com)

I am not fond of the fenugreek opening notes that are reminiscent of Parfum d'Empire Fougere Bengal, ie, an edible curry. However, after the opening accord settles down, I must admit that Timbuktu is one of the best woody-incense fougeres I have experienced. The herbal accord is understated, only a tad medicinal and primarily aromatic, with a freshness that contributes a tinge of brightness without making me feel as though my nostrils have been scrubbed by a wire brush (as many contemporary fougeres have a tendency to do). The woody notes are difficult to place, and have a sweet creaminess not unlike sandalwood. The incense notes add a luxurious richness without being heavy or cloying. Wood, incense, smoky green vetiver and some soapiness define the drydown, although the herbal accord still lingers in faded form. Overall, Timbuktu is an amazingly well-crafted composition, and I would not hesitate to recommend this to anybody who is looking for a balanced, modern interpretation of a classic fougere.

on 8/4/2016 10:37:00 AM

Age: 36-43

Skin: Normal, Fair, Warm

Hair: Brunette, Wavy, Fine

Eyes: Brown

This is impossibly lovely. Opens with clean bright woods and a soapy top note. Mellows down to show off some creamy pine, cedar, darker woods, and a hint of incense. Very good longevity, perfect amount of sillage, it just wafts in and out and never overpowers. I've been sampling a lot of perfume lately and was beginning to wonder how long I'd have to go before finding something that was both beautiful AND interesting, and here it is. An absolute joy.

3 of 3 people found this helpful.

on 5/17/2013 1:48:00 PM

Age: 30-35

Skin: Combination, Fair-Medium, Not Sure

Hair: Red, Other, Other

Eyes: Hazel

I have had a 15 ml. bottle for some time, but I have been able to appreciate Timbuktu’s real beauty only very recently. At first, I thought it was short-lived on my body, with a strange flowery opening leading to a soapy heart and then fading.

Then I started noticing its mysterious and addictive smoke, an incense note of its own. Usually incense is a rather difficult note for me; I have come across it mostly in orientals and it usually says indoors and demure atmospheres to me.

Here, on the contrary, it has this incredible vastness, a very different kind of mystique. Very airy, interestingly clean, endless. Accompanied with a deep, deep sandalwood. Incredibly serene and detached on colder days, like looking at the world from the sky. Things are in slow motion, time is suspended, worries of everyday life somehow disappearing. This is a strange feeling of serenity I associate with skydiving and floating in the air.

Nevertheless, this feeling does not come without a paradox in Timbuktu. Sometimes, in addition to leather undertones, there is a dirt note from the patchouli that's very prominent on my skin. And sometimes a very noticeable campfire note. Both of them are satisfactory olfactory experiences, though not necessarily pleasant in an everyday sense. I feel very conscious of myself when I notice these on my body if I'm outside. Still, they have taught me to derive pleasure from things that I would easily hush aside some time ago. They disappear when it's cold.

Timbuktu is a strictly colder weather fragrance for me with good sillage and lasting power, but I prefer wearing it closer to my skin and reapplying if necessary. It goes surprisingly well with the chaotic city I live in as well as the inner peace I work to nurture.

5 of 5 people found this helpful.

Age: 44-55

Skin: Other, Other, Neutral

Hair: Other, Other, Other

Eyes: Other

In a nutshell:
Timbuktu smells like old money. Old money on vacation at a resort in a hot, dry climate.

5 of 8 people found this helpful.

on 6/23/2013 11:29:00 PM

Age: Unknown

Skin: Acne-prone, Fair, Warm

Hair: Brunette, Straight, Medium

Eyes: Brown

I tried to like this but I just couldn't. Mainly what I get from Timbuktu is a nice vetiver with frankincense and some clean woods. I'm not a big fan of vetiver (though I do like Monsieur Balmain). I don't get a smoky smell from this, instead it's more of a strangely clear quality. It's also very long lasting. For people who really love vetiver this will be a treat.

2 of 3 people found this helpful.

on 1/13/2015 1:16:00 PM

Age: 44-55

Skin: Combination, Olive, Warm

Hair: Brunette, Straight, Medium

Eyes: Brown

Edit: like this more and more. I get more incense, cedar, vetiver with pepper and mango adding a little brightness on top.


I am surprised that I like this as I am not generally a fan of Duchafour or. L'Artesan. (Though I adore the 1993 version of Almairac's Voleur de Roses for L'Artesan and actually wear even the newer iterations).

It opens a bit strong on the mango, but thankfully mango is green and mellows very quickly and into a sweet modifier of spice, pepper, incense, tea,vetiver and pine. myrrh and patchouli (which dont always agree with me) give some lift to the scent. Vetiver can also give me some problems and smell dirty; here it's fine but not entirely super cleaned up (a good thing). Sometimes vetiver smells like a bonfire on me; not so here.

This isn't the melon monster on me that Malles's Parfum de Therese is, and it's easier and more mellow than vintage Diorella EdC splash, black and white houndstooth bottle with houndstooth cap. Note: to be fair, I retested PdT in colder weather, and it wasn't quite the melon overload that it was in the summer, but the melon in PdT took hours to morph into spicy woods. Not so here. Given my skins propensity to amplify melon or water fruit accord, I think this might be safest and best for me to wear in colder weather.

Easily unisex, but I am a woman that likes to wear men's fragrance. I got my Timbuktu at an on line perfume discounter as part of a l'artesan gift trio of 15 ml bottles. I would recommend buying this at a discounter in either the trio or the smaller 50 ml bottles as I think it is likely to be an older (I read this as better) formulation. However, it's definitely not a blind buy item, unless you like to gamble, and looking over the notes, I don't see much that is objectionable in terms of IFRA or EU regulations, so perhaps it's safe to buy a 100 ml from a store. If so, I recommend trying beforehand.

I agree with zeynepd's review below (I am a fan of her reviews generally). I also agree with the comment of Jill70 who said this reminded her of her dad, mowing the lawn, then coming in to have a gin and tonic. (If he was an Asian dad, he would also have a snack - perhaps some sliced green mango :) I do get some nice citrus (citrus sometimes goes weirdly candied and artificial on me), but there are no citrus ingredients in the notes that I remember.

1 of 1 people found this helpful.

on 11/10/2010 5:01:00 PM

Age: 36-43

Skin: Combination, Medium, Not Sure

Hair: Brunette, Wavy, Medium

Eyes: Other

A lot of people refer to the dirt in this one.
Frankly, i don't get the dirt.
I don't get any burnt wood, choal, tobacco, citrus or patchouli.

What I personally get is pepper and spices, myrrh, some pine and also a tad of the mango sweetness, benzoin resins, and vetiver.
All blended perfectly and balanced.
I love it.

However, after the first spritzes on my wrist I wrote it off 5 minutes after because of some heavy old leather smell that arized - I suppose it's the dirt that people are talking about? - and stayed put for around 45 minutes.

But after those 45 minutes I got a whiff of the fragrance without the heavy leather note - and I was hooked!
It's a winter fragrance for me, and thank god for that - 7 months with cold weather will make it easy to empty the bottle - when I get one!
But first off i will start with getting a small decant, as it is an unusual fragrance, supposedly to be worn by men. I don't find this scent especially masculine, though.
It is one of those scents that you wear for yourself, and not for everybody else IMO.
I love it on me, but I'm not so sure people near by will love it as much as I do. As I mentioned, it is an unusual fragrance, and not for everyone.

This is definately a try-before-you-by fragrance, but please do try if you like unusual scents with woods and spices like ceder, myrrh, cardamom, pepper, mango, and a touch of inscence.

3 of 3 people found this helpful.

on 8/21/2012 6:31:00 PM

Age: 56 & Over

Skin: Combination, Fair, Not Sure

Hair: Blond, Other, Other

Eyes: Hazel

I came to a point in my life where I wanted a "renaissance". I wanted to exercise more, eat better, and most of all, spend my time on work I enjoyed more. I saw an image for the feeling I had in the Matt Damon movie We Bought a Zoo. At the end there is a long sequnce filled with natural beauty,human kindness and radiance.

I wanted a scent for my new life. I tried a lot of samples, and for some reason decided to revisit LAP Timbuktu, a scent I'd always considered over-rated. It was a revelation. The opening is darkly mysterious and radiant at the same time. It feels like clear sunlight illuminating a forest.

As Timbuktu progresses, the woods and incense become pronounced. While it is clearly a dry woods fragrance, it does not have that bone dry feeling. The radiance counterposes and even lifts the dry woods.

As Timbuktu drys down, it becomes earthy, but still retains its light.

There are some indigenous African flowers in Timbuktu, but there are none of the floral scents we think of in the West. To me, that enhances the scent, making it more mysterious but never off-putting.

My highest recommendation.

12 of 12 people found this helpful.

Age: 25-29

Skin: Combination, Fair-Medium, Warm

Hair: Blond, Wavy, Medium

Eyes: Blue

Notes: green mango, pink pepper berries, cardamom, karo karounde flower, incense, papyrus wood, balms and spices, patchouli, myrrh, benzoin and vetiver.

Timbuktu opens on my skin with green fruity mango notes and pepper. Underneath the sheer and sparkling head notes, I faintly smell the patchouli and the aromatic resins. Unfortunately the interesting head notes do not last long and the patchouli and resin notes get gradually stronger. Although the fragrance becomes drier and earthier in its development, as underneath the main notes there are warm spice notes as well, the exotic flower and the papyrus wood counterbalance all of them very well. Somehow Timbuktu faintly reminds me of Terre de Hermes. They do share some notes, but Timbuktu is without any citrus notes. Once the fragrance has settled into a greenish patchouli and resin combination it stays that way until is softly disappears. On my skin there is no particular dry down which is a pity since I love Terres sweaty grapefruit and salty incense dry down. Lasts for about 4 hours.

2 of 2 people found this helpful.

on 2/2/2013 2:45:00 PM

Age: 36-43

Skin: Dry, Fair, Warm

Hair: Red, Straight, Medium

Eyes: Hazel

Timbuktu by L Artisan Parfumeur is not what I expected. After reading several reviews and note listings, I ordered a sample hoping for a dry, spicy chypre with incense. The opening is quiet with a hint of spiciness and fruit. Thenbangstrait to stale soap. Did I receive the correct sample? Yes, Im identifying green vetiver and a strange floral note, but the warm spicy part is definitely not detectable. (The opening is far away from the dry down.) Perhaps someone can help me understand this fragrance

16 hours later, a trace of Timbuktu lingered in my hair. The scent lost the soapy aspect exposing deep smoky woods. I also found that if I apply a very small amount to the skin the smoky-campfire aspect shows through almost immediately. This brings to mind a midnight camp fire in the middle of a hot exotic forest. I have memories of sitting around a fire with friends; drinking, and smelling the trees, flowers and other greenery as the smoke coats my hair and clothes. Timbuktu is this, only strange. Getting better

One week later: I love this fragrance! I cant stop smelling it and losing myself inside the presented contradiction. Clean yet musky-smoky; dry and hot, yet never powdery; green, but not fresh. Also, I challenge anyone to call this fragrance boring given that some of the notes are exotic, especially the floral note (Karo Karounde) and the smoke (cypriol).

3 of 4 people found this helpful.

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