Parfumerie Generale; Papyrus de Ciane

Notes: bergamot, galbanum, neroli, broom, solar notes, lavender, mugwort, clove, incense, cistus labadanum, hedione, vetiver, Mousse de Saxe, Silvanone, white musk

My obsession with Parfumerie Generale continues with Pierre Guillaume’s 24th entry in this line, Papyrus de Ciane. And I even think I’ve found my perfect summer scent in this one! It reached 90 degrees plus humidity here last weekend, but this miracle-working fragrance made the heat slightly bearable.

Papyrus de Ciane opens with a harsh, severe blast of grassy green notes and cool lavender. This sharp greenness was very welcome in the unrelenting humidity–the cool severity was exactly what I wanted! Very quickly though, a floral note appears to soften the composition, I’m guessing this is the broom note (I’m unfamiliar with broom flowers). The fragrance remains lovely, green and floral until the drydown, when things get really interesting.

The clove and the musk come through for me, adding a welcome soft spiciness. The composition takes on a subtle powdery texture, which I found nice rather than ‘old-lady.’ I also sense some licorice in there, which seems to be the Mousse de Saxe. I have never sampled Caron’s Nuit de Noel, so this has been my first experience with this iconic base and, I have to say, I like it. From reading, I gather that Mousse de Saxe is a mossy leather with some licorice in there. It’s the perfect soft, elegant drydown for this unusual green scent.

The contrast between the sharp opening and the soft drydown is compelling, and it somehow doesn’t feel disjointed. Though there is some spice in there, the drydown isn’t heavily spicy. It still manages to project that same cooling effect as the top notes. But there’s a surprising sensuality and sexiness to it that I don’t often find in ‘green’ fragrances.

Reading other reviews of Papyrus de Ciane, it seems this is a love it or hate it fragrance with very little middle ground (some people get air freshener or cleaning product vibes from it). Definitely sample this one to see where you fall, but I obviously fell for it hard. I couldn’t help ordering a full bottle to keep me cool all summer.

Parfumerie Generale; Papyrus de Ciane: $95 for 50 ml. Full bottles and samples available from Luckyscent.

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