These little white flowers from the narcissus family have a rich nocturnal life: it is not until the evening that their scent is at its full intoxicating aphrodisiac powers. It was traditionally considered dangerous for a young lady to pass through them as to be overcome by its intoxicating and voluptuous fragrance and be struck helplessly by it aphrodisiac powers (Poucher, 1959). Different crops and varieties of the absolute smell differently – some are powdery, soft and sweet, other have a slightly green overtones, and the harshest ones have been described as rubbery and almost medicinal.
In modern perfumery, tuberoses are often interpreted as a bombastic, loud and high-pitched narcotic florals. Poison and Fracas are two extreme examples of how tuberose can be treated in a very bold way. Noix de Tuberéuse, however, is the first and only perfume I found so far that is built around the theme of tuberose and does not have a harsh, intimidating, heady and cloying presence.
Noix de Tuberéuse is the softest tuberose and the one that reminded me most of the pure absolute. It is simple and I consider it a soliflore as the other notes all serve to accent different aspects of tuberose: mimosa and clover leaf hint at its slight green top notes; orris enhances its powdery softness; violet flowers bring forth an almost gourmand sweetness; tonka bean brings out its rich yet gentle, creamy-buttery sweetness; and ambery incense and sandalwood add a full bodied yet mysterious aura that along with reminiscence of coconut serves as a reference to the tropical Orient.
All in all, Noix de Tuberéuse is a creamy, buttery, sweet and soft tuberose scent. It reminds me of two things – the first one being the perfume oil called “Night Queen” from India. It is not a fancy perfume – but smells delicate and alluring, like flowers and incense intertwined. I am quite sure it is suppose to smell like tuberose to begin with, as tuberose is often referred to as “Mistress of the Night”.
The other olfactory reference links us back to Lipstick Rose, as it does remind me of the scent of some lipsticks. The violet and orris that appear in both perfumes have a similar effect and create a pleasantly plasticy nuance that is akin to the taste of a shimmering pearly-pink lipstick, if you happen.
The packaging of Noix de Tuberéuse is pink, and I couldn’t think of a better colour to describe this scent. It smells pink to me… It also brings me good memories, from when I first worn it a couple of years ago and my daughter was recovering from a broken femur, an incident that had forced her to choose speech as an effective method of communication... Ever since than she can’t stop talking, and my dreams are coming true. Maybe that is why I associate it more with chilly autumn days. But regardless of my own personal memories and associations, I still feel that the heat (even the very slight heat such as the mild spring weather in which I was wearing this yesterday) upgrades this scent into the next cloying-level which decreases both its sex-appeal and delicacy.
p.s. I can't smell the figs on my skin at all. But these are listed on the official Miller Harris website.