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He says, she says: The return to Maison Incens

  • by Philippe Constantin

The 21st edition of our top “He says, she says” column. He: Jakub and She: Aleksandra of Persefume — two people, two genders, two opinions, both valuable, both sincere. Sometimes similar, sometimes contrasting — we test without checking each other’s impressions. Choose what fits you better. Write your own part in comments.

Last year we reviewed the classic EdP line of Philippe Constantin’s Maison Incens. The collection further expanded with Neroli Animalis which at the end joined two new Moroccan Tales Eaux de Parfum launched at 2017 edition of Esxence.

Philippe Constantin founder 650 850
Philippe Constantin – Creator of Maison Incens

Now we are returning to Maison Incens with reviews of debuting Moroccan Tales creations composed by Grasse perfumer Jean Claude Gigodot: Santal Tislit, Chypre Tislit and revisit of Neroli Animalis.
Both Santal Tislit and Chypre Tislit have been inspired by tragic lagend of two lakes in Morocco: Tislit and Isli created from tears of two cursed lovers.

Top notes: Bergamot ,mandarin
Heart notes: White flowers, Incense, orange, spices, Heliotrope, Orris, Ylang ylang
Base notes: Patchouli, Cedar wood, Oak moss, Sandalwood, Musk, Animalic accord

Main natural ingredients: Bergamot, mandarin, incense, patchouli, labdanum, sandalwood, cinnamon, red pepper, myrrh, ylang ylang and rose.

He – Classy! Modern take on chypre genre with focus on incense and gentle animalic accents. Smells rich, expensive, totally unisex. Not a projection beast, yet it gives very elegant aura.

She – I like it a lot. Merging orris and heliotrope notes with incense and more oriental vibes always seemed like an interesting theme to me, and the approach in Chypre Isli proves I was right. It’s elegant, almost steam-ironed, but underneath the surface encapsulated warmth buzzes and always tries to set itself free.

Top notes: Bergamot
Heart notes: Jasmin, Rose, Wood, Heliotrope, Honey
Base notes: Incense, Sandalwood, Musk, Vanilla

Main natural ingredients: Cinnamon / Atlas cedar / Beeswax / Davana / Incense / Tonka beans / Jasmin / Myrrh / Rose / Sandalwood / Ylang Ylang.

He – Creamy sandalowood, sweetened with delicate, gourmand undertones. Feels nice, wearable, though Chypre Isli gives more memorable impression.

She – It doesn’t resemble sandalwood at all. All I feel is nice heliotrope followed by some generic, vanilla wood, too flat for my tastes.

Top notes: Orange Blossom, Bergamot, Geranium, Neroli, Petit Grain
Heart: Floral and woody accords, Neroli
Base: Amber, Marine Accords, Grey Amber, Ambroxan, Benzoimn, Animalis base

Our first impressions here (since then Neroli Animalis has been repackaged to match Morrocan Tales line) – now with more detailed Aleksandra’s review:

He – Warm, lush, nectar-like. It is dense neroli potion, during first minutes fresh as some French Eau de Cologne, than it becomes more ambery and little bit animalic. You do not need to be afraid of horse accord if you are not a fan of heavy perfumes (personally, I do not mind!). Neroli Animalis is perfectly balanced, long-lasting and vibrating on the skin. Both hot and refreshing – that’s a lovely effect!

She – Orange blossom is one of my favourite notes, but perfume creators often fail to catch its whimsical beauty. With neroli – the greener and more vibrant rendition of orange blossom – it’s even harder to mirror the harmony between white, narcotic flower and gaudiness of leaves and twigs. In Neroli Animalis this already breakneck concoction is supposed to be married to a purely animalic mixture of notes. Do the creators succeeded in it? Depends on the weather. On my skin the perfume tends to break into separate layers when it’s warm – firs I feel pure green neroli with bergamot and then a strange, sweet, somewhat candy note, not even resembling orange blossom. Where’s the animal? It’s gone, completely. But in colder weather the trick sometimes works, and I intensely enjoy the potent, slightly terryfing image of a wild beast with a tree sap in its veins.

Moreover, many Maison Incens fans are waiting for the launch of Les Incensees trio comprising of lush Coeur de Rose, carnal Coeur de Musc and creation without any compromises: truly animalic and skanky Coeur de Oud beast.

les incensees
Les Incensees Extraits – photo by Konstantin Subbotin

Good news – this premium line should be finally launched in Autumn 2017, though its availability will be limited. Look for them soon in Maison Incens E-Boutique where Moroccan Tales collection will be also launched, together with new 50ml bottles.

Maison Incens Moroccan Tales – available in EdP 100ml, 139 EUR. Photo – Maison Incens and Konstantin Subbotin. Opinions – our own.