Notes: citrus, peach, jasmine, rose, iris, spices, vetiver, and oakmoss.
Perfume lovers don’t always agree on much. But one thing I think most of us want out of a fragrance is some kind of longevity. A refreshing but short-lived Eau de Cologne has its place (the hottest, most humid days of summer), but I think a lot of us appreciate some serious wear time from our perfumes. That’s one reason I’ve been skeptical of natural perfumes. No sillage and no staying power seems to be the consensus when it comes to natural scents. Enter: Hiram Green Perfumes, which perfumer Hiram Green launched in order to work exclusively with natural materials.
I was browsing around Luckyscent, as I tend to do, when Shangri La popped up as a recommended scent for me. The fruity chypre genre isn’t usually my favorite, but I was intrigued enough to order a sample. The fruit is the dominant note on my skin here, particularly the peach, which comes across as a realistically ripe note, as though this peach is just soft enough to bite into. I get the tiniest sparkle of citrus from the opening, just a wink, and then it’s all peach from there.
The floral heart notes appear fairly quickly here. The jasmine is a clean bright white floral, but it brings a full-bodied aspect to the composition. The rose meshes well with the peach note, really bolstering the impression of ripe lushness here. At this stage, Shangri La reminds me very strongly of Liaisons Dangereuses from Kilian, another fruity chypre. In that case, the peach note was also very pronounced on my skin. Apparently, my skin chemistry just loves a peachy chypre!
Shangri La remains this way, a lightly spiced fruity floral, for several hours. I get some really nice sillage out of it before the composition begins to settle a little bit. I was hoping for some smoky earthiness from the iris and vetiver, but both notes seem lost on my skin. Ditto with the oakmoss. The depth I get from this fragrance is from a spiced clove note, which is lovely since I do like cloves. I wish a little more depth overall would come through on my skin though. Unfortunately, this means the dry down is mostly lost on me.
Shangri La disappears on me after five hours, which is honestly a longer wear time than I was expecting. It fades out as the rose note verges on turning from lush ripeness to that sickly type of decaying floral note. I’m not a fan of that kind of floral, so the composition probably bows out at the right time on my skin. I’m really impressed with the projection I got out of this, as well as the gorgeous full-bodied fruit and floral notes. My skin chemistry was stubborn and just did not want to pick up the vetiver or oak moss during any of my wearings of this. Still, Shangri La is a nicely put together composition, particularly for a natural fragrance. It has definitely made me question my skepticism of natural perfumes, and I’m sufficiently intrigued to keep an eye out for more from Hiram Green.
***Edited to add: The lovely Lavender brought this post by Luca Turin concerning Shangri La and Hiram Green to my attention: EU Natural. It’s VERY interesting and casts a different light on the process of working with so-called natural materials. It’s definitely eye-opening as to what the industry can classify as a “natural” composition. I’m intrigued to try more scents from this brand now simply because my curiosity has been piqued. I will try to do more research on natural brands and fragrances in the future to see just what type of “natural materials” are being used in the compositions.
Hiram Green Perfumes are available from Luckyscent, which is where I ordered my sample.
Both the image and info on notes are also from Luckyscent.