Perfume Review: Bois des Îles (Parfum) by CHANEL, Every Bit as Perfect as CHANEL No.5
I loved the Bois des Îles EDT that I sampled years ago. It shared a lot in common with No. 5. It had the aldehydes, but it smelled a lot woodier. I was never able to put it out of my mind entirely, so I went out on a limb one day and purchased a bottle of the Parfum. Instead of opening it, I let it sit for almost a year. With all due respect to myself, what was I thinking? How could I let this magnificent siren smolder in its box, all alone, all that time?
When describing Bois des Îles (parfum), where does one begin? The Parfum also resembles No.5, with aldehydes that smell like a dry, fizzy champagne. They last hours on my skin.
Bois des Îles is a master at "now you see it, now you don't." One moment I smell lilac, the next I don't. Another moment I smell coconut, the next I don't, and so on and so forth with notes of vetiver, benzoin, vanilla, orange and some ethereal white flower.
But one thing that is evident without fail is the generous amount of creamy sandalwood that is the focus of this timeless beauty. Bois des Îles (parfum) must be the best sandalwood fragrance in existence. It is effortlessly silky and somehow exotic, capturing the true nature of the precious wood.
The sandalwood is beautifully supported by a lactonic peach, which brings a syrup-like sweetness to the Parfum. While I love both concentrations, the sweet, rounded scent of the Parfum makes it seem more voluptuous, and even a bit sexy, whereas the word "sexy" never crossed my mind with the EDT.
The other thing about Bois des Îles Parfum that I can not get enough of is the animalic musk. It smells very much like the one used in No. 5. It caught me off guard, as I didn't really think of Bois des Îles as a musky perfume, but it is on my skin. It's very musky! The musk melts into my skin like butter.
I know that Bois des Îles is an old perfume, and I have never smelled a vintage, but the current interpretations seem perfectly modern at this point in time. Vintage-style modern perfumes are all the rage these days (e.g. Maai, Salume, This Grand Affair, etc.), and Bois des Îles seems as though it belongs in that category.
In my book, Bois des Îles is a masterpiece, especially the Parfum, which I am so glad I purchased blindly. It is every bit as stunning and memorable as No. 5
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