As soon as I saw that Diptyque had released a lavender fragrance, I knew I had to try it. I love Diptyque’s Feuille de Lavande candle, and since Guerlain’s Jicky is one of my all-time favorite fragrances, it’s accurate to say that I love a good fougère fragrance. I was eager to see what kind of relationship I could have with Eau de Lavande.
I expected a lavender for summer, something green and herbal that would cut into the heat of the day before drying down to something warm, perhaps with hints of the animalic. I even compared the Eau de Lavande ingredients with those listed on my Jicky box, and saw enough similarities (coumarin notable about them) to confirm my expectations. Note: I did all of this before even trying a single spritz of Eau de Lavande!! If this were a cartoon, warning signs would be flashing red inside my mind. Since this is real life, I sprayed the fragrance on, not expecting to be surprised.
As it turns out, Eau de Lavande is an exercise in subverting expectations. This lavender has no interest in verging on the freshly green or cool. From first spray, it’s a noticeably warm and substantial fragrance. The spices are immediately prominent, getting almost equal billing with the lavender. I also get quite a strong impression of musk even though it’s not listed in the notes. All this is to say that the opening of Eau de Lavande is not a green or herbal floral. There are enough spicy and animalic elements at play for this to be a really interesting attention-grabber in the early stages.
Then, like a reverse-engineered fougère, Eau de Lavande’s warmth melts away as the composition cools down during the middle and dry down stages. After about an hour’s wear time, the spices recede and the composition blooms into a full soliflore. Diptyque sourced three different variations of French lavender to achieve this full bloom effect. I sometimes feel overwhelmed by strong florals, but not here. There’s actually a kind of cool relief as this fragrance develops. After the rather heady opening, one has the impression of finding a spot of shade in the middle of a lavender field.
These days Diptyque seems mainly interested in putting out pleasantly wearable fragrances as opposed to creativity-driven releases. There’s nothing wrong with wearability, and Eau de Lavande is highly wearable, for either day or nighttime. But there’s a little more to this composition than mere wearability. I feel like Olivia Giacobetti has done something quite clever here, almost playing the fougère accord backwards from warm to cool. This fragrance isn’t an absolute favorite for me, but I appreciate Eau de Lavande for making me think and challenging my expectations.
Image and information regarding fragrance notes is from fragrantica.