Frangipani Absolute is at least accurately named, given that it smells more like the absolute than the living flower. The absolute smells green and waxy, like a nubbin of beeswax rolled in matcha powder; the living flower, which I had the opportunity of smelling for the first time in Colombia last summer, smells a bit like jasmine but without the indole and grape, and there is a buttery undertone that I associate with gardenia, minus the heavy bleu cheese aspects.
Frangipani Absolute freshens the waxy-green heft of the absolute by filtering it through lime and linden blossom, creating the impression of hothoused tropical flowers drenched in ice water and the glass partitions thrown open to salty sea air. The brightness of this topnote is undercut later on by the lush creaminess of the living flower, embodied by an accord that smells like a dairy-heavy rice and coconut pudding made out of tuberose petals, with pools of yellow Irish butter rising to the surface. A subtly salty musk and clean cedar hum in the far background, mainly there for support in case the almost unrelenting brightness of the lime-drenched white flowers falters.
Cleverly, the perfumer has made the floral component very peachy, to mimic the peachy jasmine-like aura of the living flower. Frangipani is therefore blessed with a suede-skin note that smells charmingly like the back of a rubber watch on a sweaty child. The scent shifts between these three main accords green-aqueous-fresh, peachy-rubber, and creamy-buttery-tuberose without ever getting pulled too far down in one single direction. That's some balancing act.
Frangipani Absolute is an undeniably beautiful scent, and an interesting take on a flower that often plays second fiddle to more powerful headliners such as gardenia or tuberose. My hesitation on whether it stays in my collection or not stems from several different quarters.
First, the salty, quasi-aquatic musk in the drydown reminds me very much of Lys Méditerranée (Malle), already a wardrobe staple for me, which makes me wonder if it's not duplicative to have two scents that represent largely the same feel', i.e., heady white flowers drenched in dew and the salty air rolling in off the ocean. The occasions when I feel the need for this precise combination are few and far between, therefore surely it is redundant for me to have two separate fragrances at the ready when this tight little niche corner of my need' rears its head.
Second, Frangipani is so pretty and well-presented that it makes me feel slightly uncouth in comparison. Worse, the prettiness reminds me of the golden, solar fruity-floral glazed eyes' affair that is J 'Adore (Dior), which is fine if you're wearing something you can pick up from any Sephora or Douglas, but not great if you're special ordering from a classy niche brand like Ormonde Jayne.
Third, the brightness of the lime-and-peach-hued white flowers feels a little too sharp and insistent at times, like when you neck that syrupy but metallic juice from a tin of canned tropical fruit. In other words, absolutely gorgeous at first but perhaps wearing a little on your nerves towards the last? Along the same lines of complaint (minor, but still), the vanilla tuberose pudding base flirts with heaviness; it clashes a little queasily with the citric acid of the lime, to the extent that it teeters on the precipice of a curdle.
Out of all the Ormonde Jayne scents I own, Frangipani Absolute is the one I agonize over the most. Do I need it? No. Does its classical (but slightly mainstream) beauty justify me keeping it? Maybe. But the fact that I swing between a yes and a no on this scent, personally, doesn't mean that it doesn't rank among the top tier of tropical floral perfumes I've had the pleasure of smelling.
Spring blooms. Tiny, sweetened, lime peel bits. The top flows into the heart seamlessly. Very well-mixed heart flowers. I'm impressed how well these notes are blended. No sugar, lightly green, a bit watery without being too aquatic.
The heart is a light thing. Smells fairly natural, to me. Musky, mild wood, touch of sugary vanilla later. Becomes creamy with time.
Overall it's a lovely fragrance. Not one of the better florals, as I like mine stronger. Safe enough for a work scent.
Starts off as a unisex candied orange and lime, then turns into a jasmine floral scent. Very feminine. The sweetness of the vanilla and musk is partially offset by the cedar. It's a good floral scent, and one of the better "bouquet" scents for women.
To begin with, naming a scent "Absolute" indicates it is soliflore
oil, not a mixture of other scents. Perhaps Jayne wants to indicate "Absolutely," rather than the proper wording "Absolut," without the "e."
This begins for me with an apricot note, then settles down to a generic white floral melange without much character and in which I can not detect any of the notes mentioned. I would think one could not hide tuberose, rose or jasmine, but Frangipani Absolute manages to do just that for my nose.
If you want real frangipanni, note the correct spelling with two "n"s, sample Lili Bermuda's Frangipanni. Although Turin describes the scent as somewhere between peach and jasmine, for me it's closest to our tuberose, but sweeter, less green. The notes for the Lili Bermuda blend follow:
Samples can be obtained directly from Lili Bermuda if you can't find them elsewhere, and very affordably. This is available in pure parfum strength as well as either an edp or edt, I can't recall which.
Comparing both Jayne's version and Lili Bermuda's will I believe be most instructive for those unfamiliar with this beguilng tropical flower.
Intensely floral, sweet but not syrupy, heady and semi-camphoraceus, almost playdoh-y in parts even, with a vein of citrus tying up the bouquet. Better make that a 'tree' for this frangipani smells alive!
Frangipani Absolute is a sweet, tropical floral scent abundantly spiked with citrusy aldehydes, and based on a sandalwood and creamy coconut that call to mind Dominique Ropion's tuberose blockbuster for Frederic Malle. The resemblance becomes more literal as a clear tuberose emerges from Frangipani's floral accord. Frangipani Absolute remains the brighter, sweeter scent, with a lingering citrus note where Carnal Flower has a dry, edgy green component. The coconut is also more prominent in Frangipani, which has the unfortunate effect of conjuring suntan lotion. There's plenty of sillage, though not so much as in the Malle, so if you're looking for something a little more reserved in the exotic tropical flower genre Frangipani Absolute might appeal. Oddly for being a quieter scent, Frangipani Absolute misses the ethereal, otherworldly quality that so distinguishes Carnal Flower. Again I fear it is the slightly out-of-balance coconut, along with the sweet fruit, that keeps Ormonde Jayne's offering earthbound. Nice, but perhaps unnecessary.