Scent Note: What does narcissus smell like?

Narcissus in perfumery

In This Article

Origin and Characteristics of Narcissus

Narcissus is a perennial herbaceous plant belonging to the Amaryllidaceae family, while in the classical classification, it is part of the Liliaceae family. Narcissus is toxic to dogs, which can consume the flower or the water in which the bulb or flower has been soaked. The most poisonous parts are the bulbs, with just 15 grams being enough to kill a dog. They contain alkaloids that are acutely toxic. However, rodents can detect the toxicity of daffodils and avoid them. As a result, gardeners often plant daffodils around other plants to protect them from rodents.

Narcissus absolute is obtained by extracting the flowers with volatile solvents and washing with alcohol. It is used in the creation of prestigious chypre and floral fragrances, producing a green, floral, animal, and oily note. Narcissus is primarily produced in Auvergne, followed by Egypt and Morocco.

Narcissus-Based Perfumes

Hermès Eau de Narcisse Bleu, crafted by Jean-Claude Ellena, was designed to express the tactile aspect of narcissus. Featuring galbanum and orange blossom facets, Eau de Narcisse Bleu is remarkably fresh. The combination of narcissus density and the delicate woody note is highly sought after. Launched in 2013, Eau de Narcisse Bleu imparts a feeling of cleanliness and exudes sensuality.

Introduced in 1984, Givenchy's feminine perfume Ysatis includes a note of narcissus in its composition. Belonging to the floral olfactory family, it features top notes of galbanum, coconut, mandarin, and rosewood. The middle notes comprise narcissus, carnation, tuberose, and jasmine, while the base notes consist of sandalwood, civet, patchouli, and castoreum. Ysatis is a sensual and opulent fragrance.

Lancôme's Magie Noire also contains narcissus. Launched in 1978 and created by Gérard Goupy, this oriental olfactory family fragrance has top notes of blackcurrant bud, Bulgarian rose, raspberry, bergamot, hyacinth, and galbanum. The heart notes include narcissus, ylang-ylang, honey, cedar, iris, tuberose, and jasmine. Base notes feature musk, sandalwood, spices, civet, patchouli, myrrh, amber, frankincense, and vetiver. The bark of the Cascarilla tree, native to the West Indies, adds a spicy touch and appears to cleanse the narcissus scent in the perfume. Magie Noire's vintage version is opulent and highly elegant.

Modern Interpretations of Narcissus in Perfumery

Contemporary perfumers continue to explore the captivating qualities of narcissus, incorporating it into their creations in innovative ways. Narcissus remains a popular note in both niche and mainstream fragrances, lending its distinctive character to a variety of compositions.

Launched in 2016, Maison Francis Kurkdjian's Grand Soir is a luxurious, amber-based fragrance that includes a subtle touch of narcissus. The perfume is an ode to Parisian nights, with warm and opulent notes of benzoin, labdanum, and tonka bean, complemented by the delicate floral presence of narcissus.

Narcissus & Neroli by Jo Malone, introduced in 2019, combines the vibrant freshness of neroli with the green and floral nuances of narcissus. This fragrance is part of the brand's limited edition Wild Flowers & Weeds collection, which highlights the beauty of untamed nature. With a bright and uplifting character, Narcissus & Neroli is perfect for those who appreciate the unique charm of narcissus in a modern context.

Slumberhouse's Norne, released in 2012, is a bold and captivating fragrance that artfully incorporates narcissus alongside notes of fir, incense, and moss. This dark, resinous, and mysterious perfume showcases the versatility of narcissus, proving its ability to enhance both light and dark compositions.

In conclusion, narcissus continues to captivate the world of perfumery with its rich and multifaceted character. From classic and opulent creations to modern and innovative interpretations, the timeless allure of this beautiful flower remains an essential component in the world of fragrances.

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