Maison Francis Kurkdjian Aqua Universalis Forte EDP Perfume Review

Aqua Universalis Forte perfume

If you read my blog, you’ve probably read that I’m not into “fresh” fragrances. I tend to like things that are completely on the other end of the “fresh” spectrum. But, there’s always an exception to every rule we make for ourselves. Maison Francis Kurkdjian Aqua Universalis Forte is a fresh fragrance and I don’t just like it, I love it. I’m so rebellious that I even rebel the stupid rules that I make for myself 😉

Aqua Universalis Forte opens as a fresh floral citrus. The tart citron is very prominent. The lemon is creamy at times, almost like a lemon meringue pie, but sheer. I swear that I pick up on a hint of cumin. It’s a perfect addition to the coastal flowers. From a distance I get sea breeze neroli and lemon blossoms.

Aqua Universalis Forte reminds me of the world’s most luxurious laundry detergent lingering on a white cotton button up worn by a slightly sweaty, sun-kissed person on holiday.

Audrey Hepburn

Notes listed include bergamot, Sicilian citron, bouquet of white flowers, Egyptian jasmine, Moroccan roses and light wood. Launch date 2011. PERFUMER – Francis Kukdjian

Give Aqua Universalis Forte a try if you like fresh fragrances. Or if you like perfumes like Malle Outrageous!, Chanel 1932, Dolce & Gabbana Light Blue for Her, Jean Paul Gaultier Fleur de Male and/or Elie Saab Le Parfum. Aqua Universalis Forte is unisex and a great choice for warm climates.

Aqua Universalis Forte does have more sillage and does appear more concentrated. I give it above average projection and longevity, especially for something like this.

The 2.4 oz bottle retails for $275 at Parfumerie Nasreen. 

Victoria’s Final EauPINIONThe world’s most luxurious laundry detergent turned personal fragrance. That may sound like a snarky jab but it isn’t. This is what the Turkish bath towels of royalty smells like. I don’t live in a hot climate that requires many “clean” scents in my collection. But if I did, you better believe I’d eat lentils for a month just so I could buy a bottle of this.

Want more reviews? Try…

Fragrantica – Member reviews

Basenotes – Member reviews

Vogue UK – Interview with Francis Kurkdjian about this fragrance.

Perfume Posse


Katie Chutzpah

*Sample purchased by me. Product pic from Bergdorf Goodman. Audrey Hepburn pic from

3 thoughts on “Maison Francis Kurkdjian Aqua Universalis Forte EDP Perfume Review

  1. Judging by the notes, I wouldn’t have thought this scent appealingm but I think I know what you mean when you say, “This is what the Turkish bath towels of royalty smells like.” There is a bit of a turkish towel (fresh from the dryer) smell in Guerlain Lys Soleia that is so appealing. So this one coupled to what you detect as a creamy lemon note sounds, mmmm, really good.

    1. I really didn’t expect to like this one as much as I do.
      Yes, I get that in Lys Soleia too and I would say that these 2 could be related. Smelling like luxurious towels is not a bad thing.

  2. […] If you’re reading EauMG because you’re already really, really into perfume, then I’m sure you’ve heard of this fragrance. This perfume created some buzz a few years ago because it retails for under $30 and the Nose behind it is Francis Kurkdjian. Really, I can’t believe there’s perfume that retails for under $30. And I also was amused that Kurkdjian was working on such accessible perfumes when he has his own brand. […]

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