The Scented Hound

Abbreviated perfume & fragrance reviews from one man's perspective


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Vintage Habanita by Molinard

habanita1WHAT I SMELL:  Habanita has a dramatic opening that is glowingly sweetened, with a blast of fruit followed quickly by a warming floral mix that is highlighted by lilac and rose.  The perfume is so deliciously inviting as it seems to envelops the wearer.  Habanita has a sweet edge to it, but it’s not a perfume that I would categorize as sweet.  Maybe because as it develops the dryness of the oakmoss, the fresh tobacco and sheen of leather tone down the higher pitched notes.  As the perfume settles down, the various notes even out creating this incredible balance between the spice, florals and woody notes.  Habanita is sexy without being dangerous, but it draws you in making you want more.

From the Molinard website:

1921 – Habanita was born in the exuberance of the Roaring Twenties. With trailblazing spirit, Molinard revolutionized perfume codes, creating the first women’s Oriental fragrance featuring vetiver, an essence hitherto reserved for men. From perfume extract to the essence of the femme fatale, Habanita’s innovative style was eagerly embraced by the garçonnes-  France’s flappers – and soon became Molinard’s runaway success and an icon in the history of French perfume.

Top notes are orange blossom, raspberry, peach and bergamot; middle notes are lilac, orris root, jasmine, heliotrope, ylang-ylang and rose; base notes are leather, amber, musk, benzoin, vanilla, oakmoss and cedar.

cyd168WHAT IT SMELLS LIKE TO ME:  Cyd Charisse

THREE WORDS THAT DESCRIBE HABANITA:  whirling, energetic, dynamic

WHAT OTHERS ARE SAYING ABOUT HABANITA:  Fragrance Daily, Yesterday’s Perfume, Grain de Musc

BOTTOM LINE:  Habanita is one of a kind.  It’s the kind of perfume that I crave.  Unique, beautiful, radiant…I can’t imagine not owning a bottle.

  • Bone Rating:  5 out of possible 5 bones
  • Scent: Oriental
  • Classification: To me this is perfectly unisex
  • Expense: Review based on the vintage parfum extrait version.  Prices vary on eBay, etc.


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Rose Emois by Molinard

molinardroseemoisWHAT I SMELL:  Rose Emois unfolds soft and sweet as baby’s breath with a slightly sugared bergamot and mint that is quickly met with a milky almond highlighted with the lightest of saffron.  A serene floral bouquet warmed by a softened sandalwood and amber make this incredibly dreamy.  The perfume is light and transparent but at the same it has a pretty powerful projection.  After a few minutes, the rose begins to break out of the dreamlike haze of warmth.  The rose is subdued and deep and thorny without being heavy.  The sandalwood and amber anchor the perfume making the perfume feel more ambered than rose.  After some more time, an oudish note is added making the perfume feel more exotic.  As the perfume continues to develop, the oud note becomes more prominent and the perfume becomes more powdery, but there is a slight bite (no doubt from the oud note) that is a bit discordant.  I do wish the perfume would return to the beginning, but instead, it remains in this oudish rose colored powdered haze.  That’s not a bad thing, it’s just that the opening and middle phase was just so breathtakingly beautiful.

From Molinard:

Caressing scents in tender intuitions, sharing confidence for confidence … this harmonious fragrance cultivates its chosen affinities.  Carved from a rose, its natural whimsicality carries it irresistibly to floral allegories … and abandons itself secretly to the enveloping waves where man and woman meet, and make no more than one …

Top notes are bergamot, mint and almond; middle notes are jasmine, rose, saffron and ylang-ylang; base notes are musk, sandalwood, amber and ylang-ylang.

asian-tapestriesWHAT IT SMELLS LIKE TO ME: A vibrant Indian tapestry full of color and infused with the exotic smells of the market.

THREE WORDS THAT DESCRIBE ROSE EMOIS:  dreamy, royal, serious

WHAT OTHERS ARE SAYING ABOUT ROSE EMOIS: No reviews found.

BOTTOM LINE: Rose Emois is part of Molinard’s La Collection Privee. Besides the classic Habanita, you don’t hear much about Molinard.  Their perfumes, albeit somewhat hard to find, are pretty and easy to wear.  This is no exception.

  • Bone Rating:  3.5 out of possible 5 bones
  • Scent: Floral Woody Musk
  • Classification: Unisex
  • Expense: Approximately $180 for 100 ml eau de parfum.


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Vintage Molinard de Molinard

Flacon Molinard de Molinard

WHAT I SMELL:  Molinard de Molinard’s opening is all smoke and incense on top of bergamot and a muted fruit.  This is quite the contradiction in notes, but somehow it really works and makes the kick off incredibly interesting.  After around 5 minutes the florals start to brush away the smoke and incense (but not too much though) to reveal a rather bright undercurrent filled with my favorites, ylang-ylang and rose (somehow that combination always seems to work for me).  The fragrance is quite large and at times seems more fruity than floral but the one consistent is the veil of incense that seems to glide and move around the other notes.  There’s a strange mix of cool and warmth with this; the base is warm but there is this sheered gauze above that seems to be a bit cooler.  This is one of the fragrances that when sniffed you can feel the movement of the molecules running under your nostrils.  As the fragrance begins to settle, the movement dies down and the incense calms to a whisper and the fragrance becomes golden warmth.  It’s incredibly sensuous and very womanly, a real radiant beauty.  After a few hours, you’re left with a lightly sweetened fruity comforting dream.

Molinard de Molinard notes via Fragrantica:

Top notes are black currant, fruity notes, green notes, asafoetida, lemon, bergamot and cassis; middle notes are jasmine, ylang-ylang, lily-of-the-valley, Bulgarian rose and narcissus; base notes are labdanum, amber, musk, vetiver, incense and patchouli.

Myrna LoyWHAT IT SMELLS LIKE TO ME:  Beautiful and mysterious, like an early 1930s Myrna Loy when she was still playing “exotics” prior to becoming a star.

THREE ADJECTIVES THAT DESCRIBE MOLINARD DE MOLINARD:  mysterious, sensuous, radiant

WHAT OTHERS ARE SAYING ABOUT MOLINARD DE MOLINARD Post Modern Perfume (the only review I could find and which was based on the EdT version which was a very different experience from my Parfum Extrait version)

BOTTOM LINE:  I found this little 7.5ml beauty at an estate sale and only wish that I had more.  I don’t wear it often, but when I do, I always ask myself, why I don’t.  Part of it is that I hide it away in a cabinet like a precious jewel that I just don’t ever want to lose.  Oh, and what a little jewel it is…the bottle is an exquisite Lalique beauty.

  • Bone Rating: 4.5 out of possible 5 bones
  • Scent: Fruity Floral
  • Classification: Feminine
  • Expense: Varied for vintage. Review based on the Parfum Extrait version.