When I was younger summer trips to Croatia and Bulgaria were very exciting as they felt like visiting a whole new world. Different people, behaviours, cuisine & nature. Later when I grew up and spent my own vacations travelling across Italy it felt no less exciting. As a general rule I find all the countries from the Mediterranean Sea basin to be very entertaining. I don’t believe in reincarnation but who knows, maybe I lived in one of them. What’s common for Bulgaria, Croatia or Italy is that guava and prickly pear were growing left and right. I looked at them as at exotic plant species but I know that to locals they were more like a pesky weed, especially the prickly pear.
Even though it’s such a common cactus-like plant of the Mediterranean you don’t see it popularized in fragrances that are inspired by this geographic region. That’s when Diptyque steps in. As part of their 60th anniversary celebration this brand recently introduced a Summer Essentials collection that features Ilio, a perfume with a very pleasant prickly pear accord. This eau de toilette starts with a very refreshing & kind of watery fruity note. It’s juicy and green in a vegetal way, yet at the same time with a little hint of sweetness that makes the opening much more flavorful & captivating.
I would say that the smell of this prickly pear accord lays somewhere between melon, fig and rhubarb – it’s got some traces of all 3. Additionally Diptyque Ilio has got some zingy tartness that’s coming from bergamot, squeezed on top of the fruit. Despite its fruity character I have to admit that from the first moment of putting Ilio on my skin I am also accompanied by the impression of silky smoothness that adds refinement to the composition. Official notes on Diptyque website mention jasmine but here it’s very solar, lightweight, even lighter than in California Reverie (VC&A).
Ilio’s silky powderness that I mentioned a moment ago makes perfect sense due to presence of iris as the final note of this 4-notes-only-perfume. Thanks to the iris this summery Diptyque creation feels more elegant. It’s got some musky and soapy aspect to it, making the scent feel clean, refreshing – in my opinion very fitted for this time of the year. Also allow me to share a personal observation with all of you – for a reasonable amount of time the combination of notes in Diptyque Ilio perfectly mimics the smell of yellow mimosa pom-poms. The vegetal sweetness of flower pollen is there.
If you’re looking for a light & breezy perfume that through its smell evokes the picturesque cliffs caressed by the foamy waves of the Mediterranean Sea, Diptyque Ilio is a fragrance for you. I have to admit that I was quickly hooked by this new composition. It’s inoffensive, simple but at the same time it’s not boring and with a nice level of being original. Plus I simply like the way it interacts with my skin. Ilio makes me feel fresh, bringing me a kiss of the sun. This limited edition composition is an eau de toilette and is available in 100 ml Diptyque oval bottles. Additional cuteness factor of the bottle is the simple & colorful illustration on the oval label by artist Luke Edward Hall.
This sounds really nice. I had not heard of it yet.
I believie Ilio was only released a week or two ago.
I’ve never seen prickly pears in real life and wondered what they smelled like. Seems perfect for the heatwave we had last week – clean and juicy, with a layer of iris. No wonder you like it! I am always looking for air conditioning in a bottle, and this could work.
I’ve seen them only in warm countries on holidays
Sounds pleasant. I’ve had ice cream and even sake made with prickly pear – it doesn’t seem to have much flavor on its own, but can be built around with other ingredients that add flavor. I will try this perfume if I get a chance.
I think prickly pear has a very watery flavor since it’s sort of a cactus, so consists mostly of water. But I like the way they made this Ilio smell.
You can’t even imagine how excited I am! Since I planned to try it, I postponed reading your review. A couple of stores where I checked didn’t have it, so finally yesterday I went to the Diptyque’s boutique. They were sold out, but at least had a tester. I checked on paper, thought it was nice and asked to spray it on my wrist (still not allowed to touch anything, even though there is no masks restrictions any longer). As it developed, I was sure that it had a mimosa note in it! So, once I checked Fragrantica and didn’t find it there, I decided that my nose played tricks on me. So, I almost jumped with joy when I read that you also thought it smelled like mimosa! 🙂
I am really glad we both agree on the facto that Ilio smells quite like mimosa for some time. Plus I feel truly honored that you find my review more important than what it says on Fragrantica 😉
[…] then I went to read Lucas’s (Chemist in the Bottle) review, and you can imagine my surprise when I read that he also thought that Ilio smelled of mimosa! We […]