M.Micallef Le Parfum Denis Durand Couture

This year fashion designer Denis Durand and perfumer Martine Micallef joined their artistic forces to create Le Parfum Denis Durand Couture. Thanks to their close relationship and thanks to their graceful collaboration the charming, mystic and sophisticated perfume was born.

On my skin the opening of M.Micallef Couture is brilliant! Right from the start I smell a lovely mandarin note. It’s not very juicy or tangy but aromatic, slightly citrus sweet with a noticeable tone that to me smells like the wax that coats the mandarin rind. It’s pleasant and warm, without any weird candle-like, artificial smells. Few minutes later cinnamon unfolds on my skin. It doesn’t smell similar to the fragrances with a cinnamon chord I tried so far. Instead it’s powder-like, dusty; sprinkled all over the mandarins it shimmers revealing its delicate spicy character. I love the smell of this combination, it’s so soft and warm.

After 30 minutes, when the first impression of Couture slowly subsides, the evolution of the scent gets easier and easier to notice. I smell rich, golden honey infused with a high quality rose accord which actually smells like real rose petals dipped in honey. Without a doubt this smell is sexy and seducing. A little bit more into fragrance development brings oud to my skin. In very minimal dose it smells not like a hospital or a nasty resin. The way it smells makes me think of a dimmed lights at night-time. Oud is a source of midnight glamour in this fragrance. But for Kafka it was dominating.

Then Le Parfum Denis Durand Couture surprises with animalic tones. A friend said she smells fur, and she was quite right – the more I tried it the more I could distinguish this note. I also think I get a little bit of suede. It all blends so nicely with the rich smell of honey that even if there are other animalic notes they’re impossible to notice and they don’t influence the great quality of the perfume.

The sensual drydown consists of soft, slightly vanilla-sweet amber combined with a gentle smell of sandalwood, here introduced in a very elegant and charming way as a tender perfumers material. Hint of patchouli adds some darker, more mysterious and secretive side to Couture. White musk is the note that crowns the concept of the whole fragrance making it highly polished and long-lasting offering that is worth attention for those who look for sophisticated and charming fragrance. I really enjoyed testing it for this review.

M.Micallef Le Parfum Denis Durand Couture (ah, what a long name!) was created by Geoffrey Nejman. It’s an eau de parfum introduced in 50 mls bottle. The flacon is shaped like a cube and it’s dressed in Chantilly lace, wearing a black satin ribbon around the neck and a golden pendant with the initials of the two artists.

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33 thoughts on “M.Micallef Le Parfum Denis Durand Couture

  1. brie says:

    Mandarin, rich honey, vanilla amber and sandalwood…Lucas, you always have a way of making fragrances sound so appealing….the only thing that scares me is the oud….I like agarwood essential oil but the synth oud gives me a headache…wonder how I would get on with this perfume?

    • lucasai says:

      Thank you Brie! As you could read yesterday for Kafka Le Parfum Couture was totally all about oud while on my skin oud was just an addition to the composition and it didn’t dominate on my skin, so… as many options as many people there are

  2. Dear Lucas
    This may be a long name, but the perfume you describe certainly seems to be worthy of it!
    A realistic mandarin that melds into a honeyed rose accord paired with oud and underlined with animalics… it may not be the most out there composition at the moment, but from what you say the execution and subtlety of the notes sound excellent.
    Another to add to the list.
    Yours ever
    The Perfumed Dandy

    • lucasai says:

      I was lucky that Couture developed into something really nice on my skin.
      Yesterday Kafka reviewed it and for her oud was the most prominent note, so mine experience is much different to hers.

  3. Kevin says:

    You had such a dramatically different experience from Kafka, and you make it sound like one I’d like. I love when people have such different reactions to perfume, it always makes me wonder how it will play on my skin. My perfume tastes are somewhere in between yours and hers (although mine are closer to hers, I think), so I’d definitely be interested in trying this one. Great review, Lucas!

    • lucasai says:

      Yes, our stories of Le Parfum Denis Durand Couture ate totally different. She got a lot of oud while on me mandarin and cinnamon were the main players.
      I understand that your tastes are closer to Kafka’s so you never know if it will behave like in her case or like in my case when you try it.

      • brie says:

        I agree with Kevin…it absolutely fascinates me how perfume can play out differently on others’ skin…which stands to reason that sometimes the very best thing to do is to sample on yourself….

        • lucasai says:

          Sampling for yourself is the best thing you can do. And forget about the paper scent strips, they’re only to get an impression of the perfume

          • Kevin says:

            Exactly! This is why I’d rather pay for a sample or wait a long time to do a swap rather than testing in a store. Not only is there a lot of distraction in a store setting competing for my attention, but the paper tests are often not even a remotely accurate representation of how a scent with play on one’s skin over the course of a day. The are good as a vague reference to how a perfume smells, but hardly allow one to truly recognize and appreciate the complexities and nuances that you get by wearing it oneself.

            • lucasai says:

              Yup! In my case swapping rules, even if im means a longer waiting for a newly released perfume for me to try.
              I use paper strips to get the idea of a scent first, and then I always test on skin (if I’m not horrified by a smell of pefume on paper)

  4. LIlybelle says:

    Sounds lush and glamorous (but not not kitschy). I love mandarin in fragrances. If I ever get the chance I will try this one.

    • lucasai says:

      I agree, it’s lush and glamorous (although the oud in it makes me think of this perfume as a more night suitable scent). Hope that you can try it.

  5. Kafkaesque says:

    It sounds GLORIOUS on you!!! No wonder you thought I’d love it! What a fantastic review, Lucas. You really describe it in a way that makes my mouth water. And I’m deeply, DEEPLY envious that you got mandarin/tangerine! As you know, I had almost none. Well, actually none at all. And very little spice, either. But I fully agree with you on that beautiful honey note.

    As for the Animalis, how very interesting that your friend smelled a furry note. Someone on my blog wrote that Animalis is composed, in part, on the Costus root which is supposed to smell like “dirty hair” which might explain the fur. Obviously, it’s the cause of the Oud note that everyone smells but I’m fascinated by the differences that you experienced.

    All in all, a beautiful review, my dear. (And thank you for the link!) xoxo

    • lucasai says:

      It’s so so much different comparing to your experiences with Couture you wrote about yesterday. I tried my best to describe it in a nice way (me likes some comparisons and poetics).
      And I’m really sorry that neither tangerine nor spices showed up on your skin. Glad we can at least agree on the honey note 🙂

      Oh, that is interesting. Looks like the Animalis with a costus root quite explains why my friend said it smells of fur to her. Sure it is oud, no doubt!

      Thank you sweetheart! Hugs!

      • Michelyn says:

        Hi Lucas
        There is absolutely no oud in this fragrance according to Martine
        What you are smelling is the animalis accord of civet castoreum and labdanum
        It is beautiful, sexy and so wearable

  6. Isn’t it always so interesting how differently scents are on different people? Am looking forward to checking this out.

  7. Maria Ho says:

    It sounds gorgeous!

  8. hajusuuri says:

    Hello sweetie, this sounds great on you. I bet I will like it too. It will be on my STC Wish List. I don’t think it is available yet as I was poking around the site last night and did not see it. I was actually surprised at how many perfumes there are in this line! I have samples of Gaiac and something else that came out last year the name of which I don’t recall; these are in my neglected samples pile.

    • hajusuuri says:

      The other M. Micallef sample, actually a 4 mL (?) mini, is Ylang in Gold, also languishing in my untested samples box/pile.

      • Kafkaesque says:

        Ylang is supposed to be great. I have Gaiac that I’d planned to test this week, only the new perfume took it’s place.

        One word of caution about the Surrender to Chance listings for Micallef: they include a vast number of perfumes that were either limited-edition or that are no longer available for full bottle purchase. From what I gather from a few groups, Micallef seems to pull a number of perfumes (outside of the 6 or so in the original line) after a while. So, if you’re ever tempted to order a sample from Surrender to Chance, check first with Lucky Scent, Parfum1, or the actual Micallef website to see if it is still available for purchase. There may be no point in ordering a sample if you can’t ever get your hands on more.

        • lucasai says:

          Thanks for the warning Kafka. Shouldn’t STC be more updated with their content?
          There really is no point in ordering a sample of a perfume that you might never be able to buy. And that would be a shame if you loved it.

      • lucasai says:

        Oh, I got the sample of Ylang in Gold at the end of last year but was hesitating to use it since I got a sample with “shimmering effect” on skin and I don’t want to shine like J.Lo in her videoclips

    • lucasai says:

      Micallef is not much popular in the USA so far but they’re trying to change it I think. I think you might like Couture. The line is big, agreed, and almost every single one is with oud.
      Have not tried Gaiac yet

  9. Ines says:

    I really like the sound of this. 🙂
    I must get my hands on a sample somewhere.

  10. […] WHAT OTHERS ARE SAYING ABOUT THE LE PARFUM COUTURE: That Smell, Kafkaesque, Chemist in a Bottle […]

  11. […] Fleure Bon, Now Smell This, That Smell, Kafkaesque, Chemist in the Bottle, The Scented Hound, Perfume Project NW, The French Exit, The […]

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