Best sandalwood fragrance?

Jcelello

Basenotes Plus
Basenotes Plus
Mar 26, 2019
Those fragrances that are often touted as smelling the most like actual sandalwood oil usually fall flat for me. They are never quite as good as the real thing, but also often lack the complexity of a proper perfume because they seek to mimic the smell of a single ingredient. So, my favorites may not be considered "sandalwood fragrances" per se.

1. Bois des Iles by Chanel. It took me a long time to identify this one as a true sandalwood fragrance for some reason.

2. Black Gold by Ormonde Jayne. I still never think of this one as a sandalwood fragrance until I am actually wearing it and reminded that it has a fantastic sandalwood note.
 

rum

Moderator
Moderator
Basenotes Plus
Mar 17, 2011
In your journey so far, what would you say the best sandalwood fragrance is that you’ve encountered?

A topic that has been done to death on here before. That said, most sandalwood threads have resulted in different conclusions over the years.

Villoresi Sandalo.

+1 on the Villoresi, but would argue that the version in the blue bottle was the better one

Santal Noble by MPeG was another benchmark sandalwood, as was Crabtree & Evelyn's now discontinued Extract of Mysore Sandalwood. Then you also have the slightly less popular Sandalwood by Elizabeth Arden.
 

Shadowartisttxl

Well-known member
Mar 25, 2016
A topic that has been done to death on here before. That said, most sandalwood threads have resulted in different conclusions over the years.
To be fair - that’s true of nearly all threads outside of those that are house specific. As you said: things change over the years: new releases, new members, new tastes: hence, new threads
 

purecaramel

Basenotes Plus
Basenotes Plus
Nov 9, 2013
Patou Ma Liberte has a Sandalwood Rose that gives me a kick of Quality scent.
If you are able to find pre 80's Bois des Isles you are rewarded with a dose of Chanel's special blend of Mysore.
High quality Sandalwood is present in a few of the Henry Jacques scents I have sampled.
Early Polge Tiffany for Men has a rich Sandalwood Note of note.
 

Red Hawk

Well-known member
Dec 4, 2019
The recent releases "Sandalwood & Suede" by Cremo and "Wild & Botanic" by Hawthorne are some of my favorites. On paper they sound a little similar, as "Wild and Botanic" has notes of suede and sandalwood in it as well. But they're quite different. "Sandalwood & Suede" is brighter and fresher, thanks to a fig top note, while "Wild & Botanic" is darker, spicier, with notes like saffron and tolu balsam. But I think I can definitely make out a similar sort of sandalwood at the heart of each. The Cremo is a simpler sort of daytime sandalwood scent while the Hawthorne is a rich evening scent.
 

N.CAL Fragrance Reviewer

Retired
Basenotes Plus
Jul 1, 2011
Adding yet another vote for both
TRNP Embers
and
Chanel Egoiste (as someone mentioned, the yardstick by which all other sandalwood perfumes are measured)

Guerlain Samsara!

Maybe not all of these the absolute best, yet some did enjoy the most so far did include, among others:
seconding Egoiste while also adding C&E Sandalwood (including the vintage Mysore take on this), Creed OS, l'Occitane Ambre & Santal, Etro Sandalo

+1 Bois des Iles by Chanel *** prefer the edt ***

Those fragrances that are often touted as smelling the most like actual sandalwood oil usually fall flat for me. They are never quite as good as the real thing, but also often lack the complexity of a proper perfume because they seek to mimic the smell of a single ingredient. So, my favorites may not be considered "sandalwood fragrances" per se.

1. Bois des Iles by Chanel. It took me a long time to identify this one as a true sandalwood fragrance for some reason.

2. Black Gold by Ormonde Jayne. I still never think of this one as a sandalwood fragrance until I am actually wearing it and reminded that it has a fantastic sandalwood note.

Vintage Guerlain Samsara edp, bar none

Egoiste EDT, Egoiste Cologne Concentree, Bois des Iles Parfum, EDT, and Samsara parfum extrait are all good.

Crabtree & Evelen Sandalwood is good.
 

cheapimitation

Well-known member
May 15, 2015
Chanel's Bois des Isles is the best I've tried.

Also kicking myself that I never got a bottle of L'Ether from IUNX now that the entire line seems to be discontinued. It had a fantastic sandalwood dry down.

For those who recommend Samsara, is it worth getting the currently available version? Even if not as good as vintage, it looks to be available dirt cheap.
 

drseid

Sound Scents
Basenotes Plus
Jun 1, 2003
If looking for a straight, *real* Mysore sandalwood offering from current perfumes, then Mysore Santal EdT by Ethos Grooming Essentials is the best I have sniffed and very reasonably priced at $75 per 60ml retail. It is literally Mysore sandalwood in a bottle (using Mysore Sandalwood essential oil), with each bottle even having some Mysore sandalwood chips at the bottom of the bottle to allow the perfume to get even better over time. Great stuff if straight sandalwood is your kind of thing.

5B9CBCBF-9333-4FAF-A554-3312E1213C13.jpeg
 

NighthawkAtTheDiner

Well-known member
Dec 29, 2020
+1 for Bois Des Iles Extrait

Also try Santal Blush by Tom Ford, dries down to a beautiful Mysore accord.
And Wonderwood by CdG for decidedly synthetic but great take on the note.
 

Tamasin

Well-known member
May 14, 2006
In your journey so far, what would you say the best sandalwood fragrance is that you’ve encountered?

Montabaco by Ormonde Jayne has a lingering loving enveloping sandalwood. And I think even better is the hard to get Montabaco Verano with this citrussy lemon pomelo note. I got a 10mls sample a couple of years ago but they are always sold out.
 

Proust_Madeleine

Well-known member
Apr 5, 2019
To all the people that mention Guerlain Samsara in vintage, I was finally able to score an ooooold bottle from a family member’s abandoned perfume shelf and it IS so much more genuinely sandalwoody than the new one which is a bit more complex in its base. The old one has an opening that feels like it’s falling apart ever so slightly but give it five minutes and yeah, way more creamy sandalwood than I expected. So great advice!
 

Vint8ge

Member
Oct 13, 2019
If looking for a straight, *real* Mysore sandalwood offering from current perfumes, then Mysore Santal EdT by Ethos Grooming Essentials is the best I have sniffed and very reasonably priced at $75 per 60ml retail. It is literally Mysore sandalwood in a bottle (using Mysore Sandalwood essential oil), with each bottle even having some Mysore sandalwood chips at the bottom of the bottle to allow the perfume to get even better over time. Great stuff if straight sandalwood is your kind of thing.

View attachment 156174

This looks legit!

How come there is no fragrantica or basenotes page on this ethos mysore santal!?

No youtube reviews either

I want to try it now lol - I’m glad this thread is recent bc I’m also googling others mentioned
 

Red Hawk

Well-known member
Dec 4, 2019
I've really been enjoying "Soft and Airy Sandalwood" by Hawthorne lately. Notes of cucumber, orris, violet, "marine floral musk", and sandalwood. It's sort of similar to "Book" by Commodity, dry but a bit creamier rather than papery. I actually enjoy wearing it quite a bit more than Book. Feels versatile, a pleasant scent for the office and rather rich and inviting for evenings. And it gets good performance too.
 

drseid

Sound Scents
Basenotes Plus
Jun 1, 2003
This looks legit!

How come there is no fragrantica or basenotes page on this ethos mysore santal!?

No youtube reviews either

I want to try it now lol - I’m glad this thread is recent bc I’m also googling others mentioned
I have been trying to get BN to create a review page for the perfume for months, but alas, nothing yet. This reminded me to stock up on the stuff, so just bought another bottle. :)
 

Vint8ge

Member
Oct 13, 2019
I have been trying to get BN to create a review page for the perfume for months, but alas, nothing yet. This reminded me to stock up on the stuff, so just bought another bottle. :)

Once you get it can you update me on how this batch turned out? I see they said there can be some batch variablility - also - hows the longevity and projection for you? Mini review!!
 

Paddington

Marmalade Sandwich Eater
Basenotes Plus
Jun 17, 2021
If looking for a straight, *real* Mysore sandalwood offering from current perfumes, then Mysore Santal EdT by Ethos Grooming Essentials is the best I have sniffed and very reasonably priced at $75 per 60ml retail. It is literally Mysore sandalwood in a bottle (using Mysore Sandalwood essential oil), with each bottle even having some Mysore sandalwood chips at the bottom of the bottle to allow the perfume to get even better over time. Great stuff if straight sandalwood is your kind of thing.

View attachment 156174

id like to hear your thoughts on this
 

drseid

Sound Scents
Basenotes Plus
Jun 1, 2003
Once you get it can you update me on how this batch turned out? I see they said there can be some batch variablility - also - hows the longevity and projection for you? Mini review!!

id like to hear your thoughts on this
Once the new bottle arrives I will indeed post my thoughts... Should be about a week or so...
 

drseid

Sound Scents
Basenotes Plus
Jun 1, 2003
Have you sampled or had a bottle prior to this? How was longevity and projection if so?
I have been using a bottle of the skin food, (which is a lesser concentration of the same thing) currently as an aftershave since it really is closer to aftershave strength in that concentration and was created primarily for that purpose though was just strong enough to wear as a daily perfume instead. In skin food strength it is very mild, rather close to the skin but all real Mysore sandalwood and only that scent-wise. You get the unmistakable creamy, slightly sweet profile that can only be found with the real thing. My bottle’s sandalwood intensity has strengthened over the last several months as the Mysore sandalwood chips gradually infused the essential oil based mixture.

The new stuff coming is the more strong newer EdT version that should smell exactly the same, literally just stronger. Apart from any changes due to batch variances (and I don’t want to imply Creed-like craziness, but this is the real stuff that can indeed slightly vary due to its scarcity) I am interested to see if this concentration too sits close to the skin, or projects more. Longevity on the skin food is difficult to say, as I usually added a perfume of the day over it…. I will test the EdT as a standalone and report back, maybe also wearing the skin food as a standalone to see any differences in length.
 

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