In the House – Brand Spotlight on L’Artisan Parfumeur

L'Artisan Parfumeur Logo

In the House is a feature on EauMG. I’m collecting my experiences from years of perfume sampling and putting together a quick brand overview. There are so many perfume lines out there that it can be overwhelming. My goal with this is to quickly introduce people to niche and indie lines that may be of interest to them.

Who’s in the house? L’Artisan Parfumeur

L'Artisan Parfumeur London

The History: L’Artisan Parfumeur is one of the respected elders of niche perfumes. This French perfume house was founded in 1976 by perfumer, Jean Laporte (he later went on to found Maîre Parfumeur et Gantier). Launching the classic Mûre et Musc in 1978, the brand put itself on the niche perfume map. In its 36 year lifetime, L’Artisan has collaborated with many perfumers creating many cult-classic blends that are loved by perfumistas and often imitated by others in the industry 😉

The Perfumers: The brand is smart and have collaborated with gifted perfumers such as Olivia Giacobetti, Bertrand Duchaufour and Jean-Claude Ellena. Other perfumes include:  Anne Flipo, Karine Vinchon, Elisabeth Maier, Dora Baghriche-Arnaud, Karine Vinchon Spehner, Celine Ellena, Jean-Francois Laporte and Michel Almairac. As you can see, they have their sight set on “superstar” perfumers. The feature a nice perfumer profile on their website.

My impressions of the brand: L’Artisan is one of those brands that has a little of everything. As the result of a diverse group of perfumers and 35+ years of exploring different concepts and trends, you’re going to find less of a “theme” throughout the line. They have a lot perfumes that I like and a lot that don’t like. Some houses have perfumes that share common “DNA” but I don’t think that is the case with L’Artisan. They sort of say “hey, perfumers, do whatever but don’t get too crazy or break the bank”.

L'Artisan Mure et Musc

Brand’s strengths: Like I said in the “impressions section”, this brand has a wide range and there aren’t many redundancies within the line. The brand also knows how to pair a great perfumer with their strengths (or at least holding them accountable to their “vision”). This brand has good distribution internationally, making them easier to “try before you buy”.

Brand’s weaknesses: The line is huge, too big in my opinion. Some people find expansive lines like this overwhelming. Like I said, the line is diverse so someone may try one and despise it and never try the others thinking that many of them are the “same”. One of the things I dislike about this brand – they are always discontinuing popular scents. Sometimes they come back, sometimes they don’t. Heck, it may even come back with a new name. It’s very frustrating to feel like you can’t “trust” a brand. They may discontinue any of your favorites any day now…you don’t know. It feels so random. L’Artisan has given me perfume trust issues.

I have tried: All of them except the three newest Explosions d’Emotions (2014) and a few of the discontinued scents.

L'Artisan Amber Ball

My favorite/s from the line that I’ve tried: This is very difficult for me. So, I’m thinking “which ones would make you the most upset if they were discontinued?”. And my answer would be Dzing!, Voleur de Roses, Safran Troublant, Bois Farine and Drole de Rose. I own Voleur de Roses and Bois Farine. And I love their Amber Ball.It’s one of the best frivolous purchases that I’ve ever made.

My least favorite from the line: Fleur de Liane. That doesn’t agree with me at all. I have complicated relationships with Batucada, Traversee du Bosphore and Seville a L’Aube. I don’t dislike those last three, but it’s complicated. I’m also not super impressed with the Explosions d’Emotions that I’ve tried but that’s mainly me being grumpy about their price.

Comparable brands in style: Diptyque, Hermes Hermessence, Penhaligon’s and The Different Company.

L'Artisan Parfumeur

You may like some of the perfumes in this brand if you like perfumes like: This isn’t easy to answer since they have a wide range. I would say gourmands that aren’t too foody, sexy florals, or woodsy scents. They also do fruity nicely. 

Does the brand offer samples or a discovery set? Around the holidays the brand has discovery sets/minis as limited editions.  They also have “The Perfume Box” of samples but it contains only a few. Some of their vendors sell samples (that aren’t manufacturer’s samples).

Available products by this brand: perfumes, candles, reed diffusers, amber balls, sachets and body products.

Price range: Perfumes are $100-$225. Home fragrances range from $60-$85. Amber balls range $90-$550 (size of a basketball). Body Wash is $40.

Where to buy? The brand has boutiques around the globe and can me found at many retailers from small boutiques to high end department stores. Here’s their store locator. The brand is also sold on the company’s site. In the US, it can be found at retailers such as Beautyhabit, Twisted Lily, Aedes and Luckyscent. And yes, even Sephora is carrying a few of their scents now.

I haven’t had such trouble picking out my “must-try” perfumes. It really depends on what you like. I have a list of two versions. The first list is more woodsy and the second list is more floral. Now if you want to “discover” this line, try a mix from both lists. Or choose six that “sound” good to you. But, you must try Dzing!

L'Artisan Parfumeur Dzing

My Top Six “Must-Try” Picks – Version 1.0

This is my list for those that tend to like woodsier scents and tend to dislike light or floral scents.

Voleur de Rose – A dirty, earthy patchouli rose. It was around before the market was flooded with these.

Dzing! – Old books and musk. Some people get barnyard funk. If you can only try one perfume from L’Artisan, try this.

Mure et Musc Extreme – It’s a more intense version of the blackberry musk that put L’Artisan on the map. Reminds me of late August.

Al Oudh – Spicy skank. When this one works for you, it works. 

Bois Farine – Sweet, bready woods. So Ellena-esque.

Fou d’Absinthe – Spicy pine. Don’t think of it as absinthe, think of it as a Southern pine forest.

L'Artisan Parfumeur Safran Troublant

My Top Six “Must-Try” Picks – Version 2.0

This list is for those that prefer florals over woodsy.

Dzing! – See above, everyone should try this one.

Mure et Musc Extreme – See above. It’s their classic. It’s their “Chanel No. 5”.

Nuit de Tubereuse – Hefty tuberose with some darkness.

Drôle de Rose – Powder puff rose-violet. One of those “vintage makeup” perfumes. Not as femme fatale as Malle Lipstick Rose. 

La Chasse Aux Papillons – Flirty, fleeting white florals. Worth sampling to see L’Artisan’s sheer side.

Safran Troublant – Spicy rose attar with vanilla. Sugar and spice and everything nice.

You can find L’Artisan on Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest. I love their Instragram account. Pups, perfume, flowers…

Want more In the House? 

Providence Perfume Co. 



*Logo from Covent Garden boutique from Basenotes. Mure et Musc pic from Amber Ball from Luckyscent. L’Artisan bottles from Fragrantica. Dzing and Safran Troublant from Luckyscent.


16 thoughts on “In the House – Brand Spotlight on L’Artisan Parfumeur

  1. I like Fleur de Liane and have issues with Seville a L’Aube as well. Both are Duchafour creations and neither smell much like their descriptions. Seville is just all orange blossom with none of the incense. Fleur is very astringent green to me, not at all lush, but I do like it that way as it smells fresh especially in the heat. I was starting to think my nose was broken or something.

    1. I hear that Fleur de Liane is absolutely amazing in hot, dry weather/climates (which is nothing like where I live). I think it’s one that would grow on me if given the right time and place. It has lots of fans and I see why, just not my favorite from the line.

      Yeah, I wanted so badly to love Seville because the notes listed are so “me”. Seville is one of those perfect examples of try before you buy…

  2. when i decided i needed to experience more classic synthetic perfumes, this house was recommeded to me over and over. My first was Chasse Aux Papillons; it’s sheerness was perfect for my ill-expecting nose.

    i have many many more to experience, but so far, so delighted. the amber balls look very swanky!

    would like to try some body products to see how they stand up to the aromas.

    great review of a very enjoyable house!

    1. It’s one of those that has been around and has really worked nicely with talented folks.

      Chasse Aux Papillons is so pretty, so “flirty”.

      They’re awesome. They’re terracotta and the amber inside smells like the brand’s amber perfumes, lots of coumarin (in fact, so much that the amber ball box has a warning!). The other cool thing is that they sell refills or you can refill it with your own mix of precious resins. I mainly have it around because it’s pretty. The smell is a huge bonus!

    1. Timbuktu is really good. It’s one of those I need to sample again because I feel I tried it at a time when I couldn’t really appreciate it.

      Oh, me too. When it works, it’s amazing. But, when it doesn’t…well, I don’t have to explain it to you!

  3. I have liked several, but only purchased one-Dzing! Most of them don’t last very. Dzing! Seems to stay and stay. I get the “barnyard” or circus scent. A little leather, hay and maybe an elephant or two. Also the old books. I’ve read that as books decay they release a chemical that smells very much vanillaish. The Emotions series hasn’t done much for me. I like Seville, but went with PdE Azemour. Not as sweet, but still orange blossom.

    1. Yeah, I think lasting power is an issue with some but I find that the perfumers that work on those seem to have an aversion to “lasting power”…or something. Because I see it in their other compositions in other brands too.

      I read that as well. And I do smell it in old books as well. And oysters…oysters remind me of vanillin too.

      Emotions aren’t moving me, especially at the price point but I haven’t tried the new ones. The ones I tried, I liked but there’s lots of things “I like” that retail for cheaper.

      My relationship is complicated with Seville. Sometimes I love it, other times I find it overwhelming, almost exhausting to wear.

      1. Oh and I splurged out one Christmas and got the small amber ball. LOVE IT. It’s been going strong for 2+ years now next to my computer desk. It scents the area wonderfully. I should get a refill. I didn’ know they made the mega large size. Like to see that one.

        1. Mine is 2+ years old too and still has a fragrance. It benefits from “steam baths” as well so put it in the bathroom when you take a shower and it will help to “activate” it.

          The large one is the size of a basketball, no joke. The small one scents our place just fine.

  4. Another Dzing! lover here. It’s in my top 5 list even though I almost OD’d on it once. I sprayed it on my neck instead of keeping it further away (wrists, possibly elbows) and just could not deal.
    I’ve thought other scents were pretty good. Almost purchased Timbuktu but then it tipped a little too masculine. Really REALLY like Safran Troubalant but not 100 mL worth so that will have to be a decant someday. And Seville smells like a certain food that I won’t name so that I don’t ruin it for anyone who is on the fence about it :). Mure et Musc makes my stomach turn immediately (other musks do this too me too). But I’ve yet to test La Chasse, which sounds like something I’d enjoy.

    I think your House Roundup idea is a great one!

    1. Back in my younger days, I think I could spray any ‘fume on my neck. These days, the risk of OD is too much 🙂

      Timbuktu is really good, and I debated including it in the top “must-try” over Fou d’Absinthe. Safran Troublant is delicious but for me personally, I don’t see myself wearing it frequently so a decant has been good. I still think Kilian Amber Oud smells like pickles, so yeah, don’t ruin Seville for me 😉 Mure et Musc is included just because it’s their “first” and yes, it’s synth musky so anyone that has issues with those, stay away. Chasse is pretty, but it doesn’t last on skin long at all but I think that is the point, like butterflies fluttering by.

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