Tag Archives: By Kilian

Monday Quick Sniffs, part 43


Robert Piguet launched L’Insomnuit in 2016 and I was aware of that. Since I’m not a huge fan of the brand I didn’t seek for a chance to try it until very recently when someone offered me a sample to swap for. L’Insomnuit opens with a fruity note of plum that smells kind of sugary & candied on my skin. However the sweetness is quickly counteracted with zesty bergamot. There’s also a fir balsam that adds an aromatic facet of an evergreen forest. Then comes an earthy, rooty element of iris, introduced to the perfume via orris absolute. After a while it deepens and becomes more buttery due to presence of iris concrete in the formula. L’Insomnuit has a hefty dose of oud that swallows any iris elements and replaces them with resinous, oily texture of oud. The drydown is half smooth-half harsh. Cedarwood is more rough and tad sweaty and cypriol’s waxy scent magnifies the feeling on my skin. On the contrary there is tonka bean that provides a creamy vibe with a faint background spiciness. Sandalwood adds to the smooth value of this Piguet composition. I would probably rate L’Insomnuit much higher if it wasn’t for the fact that iris part, which in my opinion is the most beautiful part of this perfume, disappears very quickly. Actually the whole thing doesn’t last longer than 2 hours on me & it smells only with a nose pressed to the skin. That’s a pity.


Gold Knight is the latest fragrance from the stable of Kilian, it was launched simultaneously with Woman in Gold. Together they form a collection ‘From Dusk till Dawn’. To me Gold Knight represents everything that I wouldn’t like to find in my perfume. There’s a whiff of bergamot that disappears in a snap and then right off the bat the perfume becomes a huge honey monster. I didn’t even have to wait until it fully develops to know that this is going to be my trauma. The golden liquid is sticky and it’s everywhere. It’s sickly sweetness spreads very fast. Aniseed makes it more spicy in a mild way but not enough to temper the amount of sugar this perfume has. As if there wasn’t enough sweetness in this fragrance, the perfumer decided to also use vanilla. Now this is becoming gooey, like a dense blob that could cause diabetes just be smelling it. At some point patchouli joins the composition. It smells rather synthetic and I can’t get rid of a feeling that Gold Knight reminds me of Mugler Angel. This perfume is a pure excess of sweetness, it’s over-the-top overdone. I don’t know how any man could wear it at his own will. I think that even women wouldn’t be too fond of it. But that’s just my opinion. Gold Knight is housed in a Klimt-style adorned clutch.


Photography-inspired line Olfactive Studio introduced Woody Mood, an oriental-woody fragrance by perfumer Bertrand Duchaufour. It opens with a bright and brisk bergamot accord combined with a lemon-like, mild spiciness of ginger. The fragrance quickly warms up, developing a sensual vibe. There’s a lovely, jammy saffron chord that kind of reminds me of rum, olfactively speaking. A note of sage adds a slightly herbal feeling in the background. Later on comes a woody part. Sequoia introduces a substantive woodiness. Then there is also jatamansi, introducing an earthy, rooty feeling to Woody Mood. Initially it smelled similar to licorice to my nose. Things get even more interesting after 30 minutes when new Olfactive Studio offering becomes darker and aromatic. Black tea note is very nicely pronounced, blending the warmth of a brew with fermented tea leaves. Incense adds a smoky effect, so essential in recreating the smell of black tea or lapsang suchong. Despite some darkness, there’s also light in this perfume. Resinous styrax carries a balsamic sweetness that blends with cocoa note. Leather note is also present but not dominant, it nicely co-exists with other ingredients. Finally there’s patchouli for dimension and longevity. I noticed that Woody Mood doesn’t have much sillage, but it lasts on skin for around 7 hours.

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Sweet as sin, Kilian Black Phantom

Most of you have been following my blog for a while now so I think that it wouldn’t be a shock for you if I tell that Kilian is definitely not “my” brand (for definition see here) however curious perfumista as I am, I don’t feel a repulsive force towards any fragrance until I try it. So when last week I received a sample set of new arrivals from Quality Missala I was also eager to try a novelty from Kilian. I’m always full of doubts about any new creation from a brand that generally didn’t impress me much in the past but the curiosity is always bigger than fear. So here I am, again…

Black Phantom begins with a pleasant scent of warm coffee. It’s quite pleasant to my nose, considering the fact that I truly dislike the smell of coffee as I find it too acrid. But in this fragrance the coffee notes has a sweet edge from the very beginning. It has undertones of delicious dark chocolate that gives it more depth and a bit of powdery vibe that reminds me of cocoa. Then things become even more sweet and warm thanks to a prominent rum accord. It combines the alcoholic vibe with the syrupy smell of sugar cane. The booziness also brings a gentle spicy feeling.


Later on the fragrance is not so dark anymore, actually it becomes kind of milky. There’s a very obvious smell of caramel in Kilian Black Phantom. It’s smooth, velvety, a little bit sticky but to my nose it smells like an intensively flavored whipped cream on top of this cup of coffee. Bright sandalwood enhances the aspect of creaminess and at the same time it adds more substantivity. Heliotrope has a vanillic vibe on my skin. It’s a little bit powdery and this feeling is supported by almond. It has tender powderness that veers towards a milky, condensed taste.

On my skin Black Phantom didn’t last longer than 3 hours and was rather transparent and discreet from the very beginning. I also don’t understand why it’s undertitle is Memento Mori as this perfume has nothing to do with remembering about death. It smells like going to a fancy café with a friend to grab a double caramel latte. It also lacks a bit of originality, it would not stand out among other similar compositions. Also I really dislike the presentation with a skull on a lacquered case, but as I’ve seen comments here and there, I might be the only one who doesn’t like it. This eau de parfum was composed by perfumer Sidonie Lancesseur and is available in 50 ml bottle.

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