By Val the Cookie Queen (from APJ)
”Using oils is highly sensuous.  I wanted to have people putting it on their finger and applying it skin-on-skin.’’ – Christine Nagel, Hermes perfumer
Hermès have introduced Cardamusc and Musc Pallida, two 20ml essences de parfum, into their exclusive Hermessence collection, available only in the Hermès stores.  The parfum essence is carried by the lightest of oils and melts into the skin as though it was never there, leaving behind the most elegant and divine smell.  
The essences wrap their threads around you, the warmth of the skin magnifying the qualities of the materials Nagel has used. Both are absolutely stunning.


7.5ml press samples 

Cardamusc Essence de Parfum
Exactly as the name suggests, it opens with an overdose of a rich, fragrant, very green cardamom which softens when the musks warm up on the skin, each layer slowly revealing itself. As it develops, the cardamom remains anchored by a very beautiful sweet vetiver, never losing the sensuality that the musks bring to the creation. Divine.
Musc Pallida Essence de Parfum
Opening with iris, it soon becomes a musky, powdery, peppery, and violet  (violet the flower) tinged iris. Musc Pallida oozes elegance and tranquility, and at the same time, remains scintillating, transpiring through the skin.  Drop dead gorgeous.
The two essences stand alone as perfumes, seductively scenting the skin for hours (they are pure parfum strength). Liquid gold. Layering them with the three new Hermessence EdTs brings the idea of a perfumed skin to a whole new level. 
The Essences de Parfum are expensive.  Sometimes life is.
 “It is with these ‘essence de parfum‘ Hermessences where Mme Nagel makes this collection her own.  Both are like nothing else in it.“
Mark Behnke – Colognoisseur
I would love a rose and musc in the collection.
Elegant, poised and polished bussis.


Filed under Perfume Reviews


  1. OOOOH they sound lovely Val,
    So glam. Would you pay retail for them?
    Portia xx

    PS Love the pics too.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Lady Jane Grey

    They are very light, more like a skin scent rather than a parfume – it‘s for me to know I wear it, not for the others to smell it. Probably if I‘d put it on a larger skin surface ?… I like the Iris one, but that‘s even the lighter from the two and was hardly detectable on my wrist after 30 min.

    Liked by 1 person

    • No. You need to smear them on. Definitely all over your neck. They warm up and last hours. People notice them. I would not describe them as light. I‘ll bring them when we meet. Hugs. xxx


  3. I loved Cardamusc when I tried it at Hermes boutique in Milan but there’s no way I’m ever paying this amount of $$$ for a perfume in a small size. Even if it’s gorgeous 😛

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi Herr Chemist! Nice to see you. I know, I know, it is an outrageous amount of dosh for a small amount of perfume. If I love them as much as I do now when I have finished them, I am gonna be up shit creek. I don’t want to be without the, Hmmmmmmm. Hugs. xxxxx


  4. Loved this post, CQ. Thanks for the tip about smearing the oil across your neck. I will try that next time I see a tester of Musc Pallida.
    These are true luxury.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi Tara, thanks so much for sharing it with your readers. Yeah, by smearing it in the hollow of your neck, you find out exactly how gorgeous these are. And you don’t need that much – but more than the SA will probably tell you need. I am hoe now, and can still smell the Musc Pallida. It has survived from 09:30. A Cookie Run, 30° weather, and a workout.
      Bussis. xxxxxxx

      Liked by 1 person

  5. I have an addiction and this post is a drug. Do I really need more smellies? Yes, of course! I hope the NYC starts carrying this soon so I can properly sample although stores oftentimes don’t offer testers of the oils or Parfums (i’m looking at you Chanel, with some exceptions).

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi hajusuuri 🙂 The Hermès stores here, there are two, both have testers of the oils. You do have to insist on trying a proper amount, I mean who spends that much without knowing if they really like them or not? I have no worries about you demanding that!!! Chanel also have all of the parfums here to test, no problem, but not on skin. They dip a ceramic Chanel stick into the parfum bottle. One end of the stick is rough, the other glazed. The rough end soaks up the extrait, and they pop it into a little folding Chanel envelope thing to take home. Lasts a loooong time. Fab. Bussis. xxxxxx


  6. Tara C

    Didn’t see these at the Montréal boutique when I tested the three new edps, will have to ask next time. Can’t afford to buy but still would like to give them a sniff, although I’m sure the local SA won’t let me smear it all over my neck. 😉

    Liked by 1 person

    • Tara C!! Hello 🙂 You don’t give her a chance to say no. A few drops on your finger and straight into to hollow if your neck. They can give you all the “the materials in these oils are so precious” spiel, but you know better. Maybe you have to ask for them? let me know!! Lots of love. xxxxxx


  7. Sandra

    Hiya Val, These are gorgeous and definitely FBW in my mind. Just need to save up my pennies. So glad you love them. Sandra xo

    Liked by 1 person

    • Heya! Good to see you. Yeah, I know you are a fan of them especially the iris. You know, I am sure that 20mls will last such a long time. And how much do we pay for the Chanel Extraits for example? It is all relative. As you know, I think in cookies, not cash. Much less painful. Big hugs to you and your Boyz. xxxx


  8. I don’t have an addiction anymore, hehe, but I really loved the Cardamusc you passed around in Spitalfields, and the idea of oils as a carrier. It is an intimate way to wear scent. The nearest thing we have to Hermes round here is a parcel drop off point at the Esso garage. Probably just as well, given that I recently sprang for a travel spray of Myrrhe Eg. 😉


    • Hi V. Yeah – we have a Hermès at the BP station. I‘m heading to Munich and am wondering if I can stay out of the posh department store that has the Hermessences. Probably not. I loved the Cardamusc the most, but now I‘m leaning towards the Pallida. Yeah, the Myrrhe is gorgeous. CPB loves it too. xxxx


  9. It sounds very appealing, I will try it if I ever get to a Hermes boutique. I am not scared by the price: at this point in my hobby if I spend a part of my budget to buy just 1 bottle instead of 2 or 3, I’ll still have a lifetime supply of perfumes in my collection. And probably it’ll be even better: I won’t have to figure out how to find space for it on my shelves 😉


    • I love your reasoning Undina. It will not take up much space on your shelves. I buy so little I allow myself to justify a more expensive purchase if I need to. 😉 I hope you get a chance to try them, even if you don’t care for them when you do. It is an exquisite addition to the Hermès Hermessence line and as Mark said, firmly stamps Christine Nagel’s name onto the collection. Big hugs and a virtual espresso. xxxxxx


  10. These sound gorgeous. I’ve read too little in the communities so I have no idea what the retail price is, would you enlighten me? And don’t oils normally cost less than alcohol based perfumes 🤔
    However, at the moment I’d give a lot to fall completely for a new perfume again, so Will definitely look in on the Hermes store later today.


    • Hey Asali! Sit down for a second. Around 325€ for 20mls. 20mls. 😆 Get samples of the three new Hermessence too, if you make it to the store. They are all lovely. And for what it is worth, I am sure the 20mls would last an extremely long time. They are potent. Nice to see you! Let us know if you try them. You can stand up again now. Lots of love, Val. xxxxxx


  11. Helen

    I really enjoyed this review and the comments. I have only been able to try tried the Cardamusc. I loved it.
    I love oils anyway, the way they diffuse more slowly and don’t have that big initial evaporation hit you get with alcohol based perfumes.
    As far as price point goes it does not seem that out of line with the price of 20 mls of Bruno Acampora oils. Speaking of which, have you tried the BA musk oil as I was wondering how musc pallida compared with that?


    • Hi Helen! The Cardamusc is fabulous huh? Fair point regarding price comparison. I love the BA Musk oil. The Musc Pallida is totally different. I too love the way oil diffuses, it’s very sensual. Now you have reminded me that I wanted to have the BA oil. I had a few drops from the perfume show in Florence. Oh dear ….. Love, Val. 🙂


      • Helen

        thanks for the information, I was curious to know if they were similar and knowing they are not makes me even more keen to try the musc pallida.
        I also like BA’s Iranzol (again in the oil). This is ultimately a more funky musk.
        By the way, although BA are not cheap they do have a good online only deal. 160 euros for (I think) 12 x 2.5 ml bottles of their oils (a fixed range) so for anyone who likes a few of them and has friends likely to be interested in others (I think Portia likes both the Sballo and Blu!) thats a pretty good deal and you can also pick out 6 x 0.8 ml oil samples of others in their range for another12 euros. (I’m not affiliated in any way)


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