Malle Dans Tes Bras EDP Perfume Review

Malle Dans Tes Bras review


When perfume people rave about how unusual a fragrance is, I become leery. I find that even if they mean well, many perfume enthusiasts confused weirdness with complexity and they confuse complexity with quality which means that all unusual perfumes must be masterpieces. But, the deal is that sometimes unusual is just unusual. And sometimes unusual is the result of a “broken” or poorly composed fragrance. I should probably save this discussion for another day but what I’m trying to say is that unusual doesn’t always mean interesting or eloquent. Editions des Parfums by Frederic Malle Dans Tes Bras is the paragon of the unusual fragrance that really is a masterpiece, something that is very well-done – artistic and technical.

Dans Tes Bras opens with violet pastilles and candy-covered anise over a vanilla-heliotrope cloud of humidity. Wait. What is this? This isn’t another girly-girl floral. There is a metallic vibe in this candied violet-jasmine-heliotrope. When I say metallic, I’m actually picking up something more human than not – a mix of salt, blood and mushrooms. At this stage, I won’t try to analyze the mix of innocent violet, salty skin and blood. I’ll spare you. Dans Tes Bras is weird and could be categorized as “delightfully gross” by some and “gross” by others. On my skin, it’s very mushroom-y and like dirt, or perhaps, blood. But, it’s also an incredibly sweet and powdery “purple floral”. Now the dry down is this blend of synthetic musks that somehow manage to have a human element. The incense is acrid, sweaty but not overexerted – it reminds me of underboob sweat. The musks are more cosmetic or functional but they add a cleanness and warmth, like a scented body lotion that lingers on warm skin twelve hours after it’s applied, something you’d only smell while hugging someone. It smells like the skin of a hygienic woman before she takes her next bath.

Roucel went on a mission to create a fragrance that reminds one of warm skin. And he succeeded. But one of the things that I realized that so much of what we perceive as “warm skin” doesn’t really exist without functional fragrances – laundry detergent, lotion, soap. It’s a symbiotic relationship. Roucel nailed it.

Marianne Faithfull

Notes listed include bergamot, violet, clove, jasmine, sandalwood, patchouli, salicylates, incense, cashmerean musk, heliotrope, and white musk. Launched 2008. PERFUMER – Maurice Roucel

Nothing else is like Dans Tes Bras. I’d recommend it to those that want an “earthy violet” or frankly, a weird violet. It’s also one to try if you like the idea of a perfume smelling like women’s skin.

Projection is below average. It’s meant to wear closely to the skin. Longevity is average.

The 3.4 oz of Dans Tes Bras retails for $250 at Barneys.

Victoria’s Final EauPINIONA really cute nosebleed. I know that sounds gross, but that’s what it is like on my skin – mineral violet-heliotrope. It’s the kawaii-est bloody nose ever. And because of this, I both love and hate wearing Dans Tes Bras. But, I can’t deny that I find it a masterpiece. It’s a masterpiece. And there’s nothing else like it.

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*Sample obtained by me. Product pic from Fragrantica. Marianne Faithfull pic from

7 thoughts on “Malle Dans Tes Bras EDP Perfume Review

  1. I tried Dans Tes Bras only on paper and was never tempted to put it on skin. To tell you the truth, I don’t even remember how exactly it smelled but when I read your description something moves in my mind… I either read or heard something similar about this perfume before… Mushroom-y… Yeah, I think Natalie (ANother Perfume Blog) asked me once when we were trying different perfumes at Barney’s if I thought this one smelled of mushrooms and I think it didn’t.

    Anyway, “unusual” isn’t the charachteristic that makes me run for a sample. These days it’s “beautiful”, “elegant” or at least “cozy.”
    Undina recently posted..“Oh, TOES!! (for some people)” or Where to Apply Perfumes

    1. There’s something “earthy” in this and it’s not just the patchouli. This one seems to be pretty polarizing. Some see it as a sweet violet, others as something too freaky to wear.

      Yes, the word “gorgeous” and “big floral” are drawing me in these days!

  2. Victoria, you certainly come up with some intriguingly hilarious descriptions. “Underboob sweat” and your final conclusion that it resembles “A really cute nosebleed.” LOL!! I certainly will remember that if I ever get around to smelling this one.

    Also: “one of the things that I realized is that so much of what we perceive as ‘warm skin’ doesn’t really exist without functional fragrances – laundry detergent, lotion, soap. It’s a symbiotic relationship.”

    Wow, that’s a brilliant insight! Great review.

    1. This one is so darn weird. I had some people that have never smelled it before smell it this weekend (with me commenting later on). 50% concluded it was cashmerean bombing a sweet violet and the other 50% thought it was a slightly “gross” violet (using words such as mushroom, potting soil). It’s so weird like that.

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