Thursday, February 05, 2009

Parfums DelRae Bois de Paradis

My bottle of Bois de Paradis was bought on a whim. It was a summer day and I was sniffing bottle after bottle at Aedes after taking inventory of my own perfume cabinet and deciding I'm seriously lacking in the feminine fragrance department (I must have conveniently forgotten the vintage classic Guerlains, Fracas in parfum, a bunch of Goutals, several vanilla-musk scents and enough others that spell GIRL).

I was determined to find something pretty and unquestionable ladylike, and the first whiff of Bois de Paradis seemed all that and then some. I rarely buy any fragrance after only one try, but the 15 minutes I spent with my nose planted firmly on my wrist didn't leave me much choice. Here was a jammy rose I not only liked, but also loved me back without turning sour. It was lush with ripe fruits, but firmly held on the sophisticated side by a woody drydown. I did the only thing one can be expected to do when falling in lust and took it home.

Later, doing some research I've learned that once again I fell for a supposedly unisex perfume. It has fans among the guys at Basenotes, who seem to be getting more of the ambery-wood base than the fruity-floral (in the best possible way). Everyone agrees on its richness and depth, though, and I could swear there's a chocolaty musk somewhere in the composition. I find it sexy in a similar way as Visa by Piguet (the modern version) or a more civilized Black Orchid (which I adore), but probably better composed.

While I started wearing Bois de Paradis over the summer, it's much more suited for winter. This juice is strong and assertive, survives showers and would clear an elevator faster than Anna Wintour. One full spray is all I need in winter and a light dabbing in summer.

So, can a man wear this? Depending on the man, I guess, and Nathan Branch agrees. I know some men prefer the feminine version of Amouage Lyric. They'd probably love Bois de Paradis, which hits a similar spot. My scent twin is a 6'4" guy, and I guess I'll need to spray him with this next time we're in ScentBar and see what happens. As for me, I'm seriously coveting the matching body cream.

Bois de Paradis by Parfums DelRae ($135 for 50 ml) is available at At ScentBar/Luckyscent, and Aedes, which is where I bought mine.

Image: Torch of Paradise by N. Robert Wagstaff. I want to live in his world.


  1. I 've been away (still kind of am) so I had to go and backread all the posts I missed. This most recent one really captured my interest, primarily because whenever I'm presented with a fruity floral, something happens to it on my skin that makes it... I don't know how you'd describe it. It goes off, that I can tell you for sure. Your mention of "jammy rose" made my eyes go all O_O and I'm suddenly really excited about the prospect of trying this one. :D

  2. So sad, Wagstaff died on December 23rd, 2008.

  3. I really wanted to like Bois de Paradis, but it was all holiday room freshener on me.

  4. I adore this and do have the body cream (smirk smirk!) which also smells divine. I get many compliments when I wear it. It goes more woody than floral on me. I think you're right that it's better in cooler weather. After trying the other three Delrae scents (soon to be more, can't wait!), I also just HAD to buy Amoreuse. At first it turned me off as way to "femme" but I almost think I've wound up preferring it, as just so beautiful.


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  6. "would clear an elevator faster than Anna Wintour" that made me chuckle out loud! thanks for that. I do love BdP as well :-)


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