Wednesday, May 04, 2011

Diptyque 34 Boulevard Saint Germain

Diptyque is not the first brand to use a significant address as the name of a perfume. Hermes and Chanel have already done it with 24 Faubourg and 31 Rue Cambon. Diptyque's spin on this is composing their 50th anniversary perfume, 34 Boulevard Saint Germain, to actually evoke the smell of the boutique itself by using elements from some of their classic perfumes. Nice idea.

I remember visiting the now defunct Diptyque store in Boston a few years ago and the place smelled delicious. After all, we're talking Diptyque, not Sephora's hall of dreck. The problem with this kind of composition is that it's a bit too vague and not very personal. Perfume to me should smell like much more than a room spray (though I admit some of Diptyque's Parfum d'Interieur are as so wonderful I'd gladly wear them). 34 Boulevard Saint Germain smells very nice, more on my husband than one me, but it's just not enough.

Beyond the spicy and balsamic notes that surround the green opening (fig and I could swear there's a hint of galbanum), the whole impression is of a well-made and expensive fougère. 34 Boulevard Saint Germain smells better than 90% of masculine colognes on the mainstream market, but that's not why one buys a Diptyque perfume.

Notes: blackcurrant, fig leaves, pink pepper, citrus, clove, cinnamon, cardamom, rose, geranium, iris, tuberose, violet, woods, and balsamic notes.

Diptyque 34 Boulevard Saint Germain ($135, 3.4 oz) is available from the usual suspects- Aedes, Luckyscent, Beauty Habit, Barneys, Saks and others.

Photos of Diptyque Paris boutique on 34 Boulevard Saint Germain circa 1961 from


  1. Gaia, I felt the same thing with this one - though I must admit I really didn't sit with it too long.

    I was left wanting.

  2. I haven't tried this one, will have to give it a spritz if it has balsamic notes. I tend to turn Diptyque's scents very sweet, but on paper, fig, pepper, iris, spices and geramium should be nice! I'll have to check it out this weekend. My top fave by them so far has always been L' eau Trois.

  3. I think I saw a candle version of this if anyone is interested!

  4. I've been checking your site regularly for a review on this!
    I picked up a sample of 34 Boulevard Saint Germain, and while I do like it, I just can't put my finger on why I'm not in love with it. I should love it, based on its composition, but it almost seems a just ordinary to me. It is a bit too reminiscent of Light Blue by Dolce and Gabana which I like, and loved at one point, but now seems too common and I haven't felt like wearing it for years. I'm still on the fence as to whether or not I'll buy 34. The candle looks beautiful, didn't test the room spray. I'm thinking on the home front, I'll just hold out and get the Cire Trudon candle I've been wanting. Thanks for the post!

  5. I received a generous-sized sample of this during Sniffapalooza, but unfortunately it turns out to be a scrubber on me. I can see this working better as a masculine. Can't test it out on my husband, though, as he's anosmic.

  6. In my opinion 34 Boulevard Saint Germain really stands above the rest of the Diptyque line. I find it quite similar to 31 Rue de Cambon from Chanel, however, slightly more masculine and less "gourmand" with the more woody/spicy dry down. As a man I give this a big thumbs up, much better than the others I've tried from Diptyque including the highly touted Tam Dao and Philosykos.


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