Louban fragrance notes

    • Turkish Rose, Oud, Violet Leaves, Musk, Patchouli, Sandalwood

Where to buy

Latest Reviews of Louban

An oud-rose in the core of the opening again - quite standard, but it is enhanced by a violet leaf impression - dark green, rich and slightly soapy after a while.

That later stages are very much the standard blueprint: sandalwood - a bit bland with slightly menthol-like undertones - plus a soft and inoffensive slightly patchouli lite that lacks and edge it harshness, mixed in together with some musks.

I get moderate sillage, very good projection, and nine hours of longevity on my skin.

This scent for cooler spring days a pleasant all right, and a bit generic and synthetic. It does it do justice to the potential of, especially, the rose. Overall 2.75/5
11th November 2020
Montale Louban is a pleasant scent, not more. At the beginning it seemed to be dealing with a traditional (and not particularly innovative) rose-oudh-patchouli-musk combo (with a touch of "oriental" hesperidic/earthy/medicinal) but in a while the striking violet leaves presence takes "influencing the scene" providing a more changeful, dark-mysterious and velvety wave enriching the soapy-rosey woodsiness (vaguely a la Nabeel Telaal). Of course I see points in common with the darker, more rosey and temperamental Black Aoud which anyway plays (especially at the beginning) a more stout/bold, arabic, bohemien and resinous type of game. I catch the typical "violet soap" undertone pairing the rose/hesperidic presence and it provides a more typically western touch of modern velvety mystery. The Louban's dry down is typically soapy/laundry and musky/botanic with spicy-rosey and earthy undertones but unfortunately it is nowadays too much close to more that several flowers/oudh combos to fully "hit the nail". Anyway a nice resinous floral alternative to dozens further "alternatives of the alternatives" out there.
7th February 2015

Louban opens with sandalwood, vetiver, a shady and dry floral note which may be a generic synthetic rose, then also violet and a base accord of patchouli and resins (I read olibanum but it smells a bit darker and thicker to me, almost like benzoin). Shortly a sort of woody-green chypre, with a dry and camphoraceuos undertone, also with a metallic-soapy feel witnessing again the average-to-low quality of Montale ingredients. Not bad per se, but if you are familiar with '70s and '80s chypres à la Guy Laroche, this smells like a pale, poor and uninspired rip-off of those – probably not on purpose, as I doubt both Mancera and his customers care about (or even barely known) that heritage, but it does a bit. The difference is only the synthetic oud note, by the way quite light, and a general "contemporary" lightness, which I'd consider more lack of depth and substance. Finally it quickly evolves on a clean, soapy drydown with synthetic nuances (from salty to rubbery, I guess due to the oud note). Not horrible, but dull.

18th August 2014
Genre: Woods

Louban opens on a very rich accord of oudh and bittersweet spices, with especial emphasis upon the cutting, saffron-like aspect of the oudh. It's an arresting and effective opening, and it at first distinguishes Louban nicely from the run of Montale rose-and-oudh compositions. The rose does eventually emerge as the oudh settles, along with a brisk green note (violet leaf?) and an unusually clean, dry patchouli. The spices simultaneously darken and take on a burning quality that overrides any excessive sweetness that the rose might impart. What I miss entirely is the olibanum (frankincense) from which Louban takes its name.

Once the oudh has receded, Louban lightens up considerably, and while I'd hardly call it a bright or light fragrance, it is less dense and weighty than many of the other Montale oudhs. Like any scent based on a rose and oudh accord though, Louban is potent, with plenty of sillage and ample projection. On the other hand, if you find say, Black Aoud too bold and aggressive, you may enjoy this new scent much more.

As a gender-neutral woody rose and spice composition Louban competes with scents like Cabaret, Paestum Rose, and Czech & Speake's Dark Rose. It is bolder and spicier than Cabaret, more generous in its oudh note than Dark Rose, but to my nose devoid, despite its name, of Paestum Rose's prominent incense accord. In all fairness must also point out that there are several other Montale oudh scents that get the same job done, most conspicuously Royal Aoud, Aoud Damascus, and Attar.

If intended as an incence fragrance I consider Louban an utter failure. As yet another oudh and rose scent Louban does not add much to the Montale range, but I suppose it does fit Montale's apparent strategy of multiple near(?) redundant releases. If its siblings didn't already exist, or if Louban's composition better expressed the ingredient for which it's named, I would rate it higher, but as it is my enthusiasm is bridled.
19th June 2014
Like other Montale fragrances, this opens with an Oud note. It is much less pronounced than say Dark Aoud or Black Aoud. The Violet leaves are prominent. After the green opening, it dries down to a brooding dusty rose. This is a wonderful smell, I just don't know if it works for men. I wore it all day, and at times loved the spicy rose, at times thought of my grandmother's rose sachet. It is complex and long lasting. You can always count on longevity and projection from Montale.
3rd August 2012
Déjà vu all over again… I wonder how many times I have written reviews about a Montale aoud /rose creation? I also wonder if I will ever be able to distinguish one of them from another without a straight-on direct comparison. As other reviewers have suggested, this fragrance suffers from a seemingly eternal Montale déjà vu production concept… Louban is very similar to one or two dozen other Montale fragrances I've tried, and there comes a time when it becomes pointless to put too fine a point on the differences between them, so all I'll say is, If you liked the other Montale aoud / rose scents you'll probably like this one; if you didn't, you probably won't.
5th April 2010
In one episode of Addams Family, Morticia Addams is given a bouquet of roses. She trims the roses by cutting off all blossoms, keeping only the beautiful stalks. This is what happened to the roses in Louban, so you get a very "green" rose/aoud scent.I do not really understand the concept of this, but Montale does not stand alone. I found a similar rose stalk scent in Twill Rose by Parfumerie de Rosine. I would recommend purchasing a sample, but only for curiosity.
27th November 2009
Long ago I got a tad bored with the myriad Montale oud/rose scents, of which Damascus is my favorite. All are very competent but redundant, with slight variations vis a vis the balance between oud and the other notes and perhaps where in the fragrance's progression the oud dominates. Ever since getting a decant of Louban I've been coming back to it over and over. The balance is much different from that of other Montale oud/roses. The addition of incense is a welcome component and the oud itself isn't nearly as dominant. The rose isn't as sweet or thick. Therefore while this is yet another oud/rose it really does stand apart as unique from the others. Overall Louban is more complex, with a lot more going on, than it's brothers and sisters in the line.On the downside, what I really like about Aoud Damascus (and even more in Micallef's Aoud Rose) is the convergence between oud and rose such that it presents itself almost as a unified note, and this is not accomplished in Louban.Ignoring the repetition in the line Louban is a fine fragrance, particularly for those who don't want an oud-dominant composition.
31st July 2009
My very first review - and in English! - so, bear with me :-)
I received a sample from Luckyscent in June, and have tried this one for the first time today.
Violet leaves, Turkish rose, olibanum (frankinsence), oud, musk, sandalwood, patchouli.
Prior to this, I have tried 'Pure gold', 'Aoud leather', 'Amber & Spices' and 'Sandal sliver', of which I find the latter wearable. The others seem to be very sharp and to a certain extent unpleasant on my skin.
For me, Louban starts out strong, metallic rose. Almost unpleasant, but just almost. Ten minutes later: soft, beautiful rose with a sting. I can recognize the oud from the other Montales, patchouli too (often becomes sharp on me), but they seem lighter and easier to be around in Louban than in the others.
The musk and sandalwood softens the intense metallic rose and the harsh oud. The violet leaves bring in the green, dry, iris-like note that almost stings like iris "always" does on me (there is never an "always" with perfume, is there?).
After half an hour the rose, musk, olibanum and sandalwood seem to "win", while violet, oud and patchouli lie underneath, creating depth and a bit ''oomph'', without breaking totally through.
Next phase: rose and smoke. Allmost bonfire-smoke. Insence. Fades, but comes back whith renewed strength.
I love it! Sensual, deep, mystical, dry, soft, clean, dark, sexy, mmmmmmm!
27th July 2009
First of all, let's get the fact that Louban isn't big, bold, or dark out of the way. If you want big, bold, or dark buy Black Aoud–which I love to wear. Black Aoud is for those individuals who enjoy wearing a fragrance that screams overt sensuality and sexuality. Louban, on the other hand, is for those individuals who prefer a more restrained sensory experience. Louban, to my nose, is no less a fragrance than Montale's earlier creations: it has just been created for a different and/or growing clientele.The rose in Louban is not Montale's typical vivid red rose that still stands out in the half light of sunset. Instead, Louban possesses soft pink and yellow roses that have been nurtured by the sun and retain a warm disposition. In conjunction with the violet leaves these roses are warm, soft, and substantial, and not at all dark.The medicinal kick from the aoud is more annoying in Louban than in many other Montales, because it takes the focus away from the roses and violet leaves for about twenty minutes. Try not to get too frustrated during this period of time, because the roses and violet leaves make a fantastic comeback on top of the olibanum and aoud.The olibanum plays an unusual role in Louban. It is an unlit stick of incense: sweet, smooth, slightly resinous, and slightly woody. It draws the aoud and sandalwood up toward the sun kissed roses, resulting in a soft and warm base.As the dry down continues the musk emerges in perfect harmony with the wood and aoud, and it stops the remains of the roses and violet leaves from becoming too sweet or linear.Louban stays close to the skin, and longevity is around eight hours on me.I hope Louban influences a large number of new people to try Montale's fragrances.
8th July 2009