Mood Scent 4: Frankincense and Myrrh

Hey there A Bottled Rose, It’s a Mood Scent 4 week. WOO HOO! This month the crew are looking at  Frankincense and Myrrh. It was Esperanza’s idea and I think she may have been spurred on by fabulous Christmas scents. So many have one of the other note mixed with a seasonal hit of spices and vanilla. These are not a duo I’d spent much time thinking about as a team, except in reference to the Jesus story. It was really interesting to note how much I like the combinations, whether as main roles or bit parts.

Can’t wait to read about your favourite  Frankincense and Myrrh fragrances in the comments too. You needn’t have both in each scent, that’s just a way for me to narrow the playing field.


So excited to be blogging with these three superstars again: Esperanza L’Esperessence, Megan Megan In Sainte Maxime and Samantha I Scent You A Day. Check theirs out too.

Mood Scent 4:  Frankincense and Myrrh

I went to Fragrantica and looked up the perfumes tab, then hit Search By Notes. Two searches: Myrrh & Frankincense, Myrrh & Incense. WOW! It was surprising how many fragrances I had with myrrh and one of those. Maybe 25 or 30 perfumes. Much more than I expected. Also, some of the perfumes I really thought would be in the mix weren’t. The way I winnowed the selection back to six was by trying to give you a real cross section of styles, hefts, availability and main notes. Not all of them use the title notes as front runners. The one thing that I wanted for this post was that the perfumes I talked about were already full bottles in my collection.

Also, I bought the Surrender To Chance Frankincense and Myrrh Sampler recently. There will be a post on Perfume Posse about it later this month, my faves may change as I work my way through that sampler too.


24-09-11 by Hilde Soliani

Mainly an amber fragrance as deliciously cozy and warm as you’d hope. The incense and myrrh add a churchy smoke and resins factor. There is also a softly hay like, dried grass that keeps the whole fragrance from being two dimensional. When I first tried 24-09-11 it was one of my very first eye lollingly glorious scents. It took my breath away with its beauty. Long DCd, I don’t think it was a popular perfume in the line.

Interlude Black Iris by Amouage

The only really new bottle in my collection including the two main notes. Interlude Black Iris has that dark woodsy/oud facet so prominent in the male oriented niche world. It is overlain by some lovely dry iris/leather but if you sniff closely above the amber depths you may note the resins, not as leading players but as part of the chorus that uplifts the fragrance. Interlude Black Iris is a MUCH easier wear than its parent and quite close to some of the better designer releases.

Mandragore Pourpre by Annick Goutal

I confess to being totally surprised that frankincense and myrrh are in Mandragore Pourpre! The zingy citrus/mint/pepper opening is one of surprise and delight for me. It’s incense and myrrh are lost (to my nose) in the powdery amber base that is soft and largely unremarkable compared to the top notes.

Sancti by Les Liquids Imaginaires

TBH I think my nose reads Sancti much different to most other people. The top notes and heart are largely ephemeral for me. My whole experience is about the resins, smoke and spice. Basically sitting in church as a kid for one of the smokier Roman Catholic rites (was it called Benediction?) is exactly what I smell. Fortunately here it’s not nearly so choking or droning. Sancti has a lovely airy space between the notes, like arriving an hour or so after the mass.

Trayee by Neela Vermeire Creations

Trayee is a beautifully woven silk rug with myriad ingredients and facets. Its sweet, fizzy opening and smooth spicy herbaceous heart have an underlying resinous beauty. Cool incense and creamy resins give the whole scent a glow and shimmer but lift the base particularly. It’s so hard to parse individual notes from such seamlessly blended perfection. Trayee, is Trayee, is Trayee. Itself and no other.

Wazamba by Parfum d’Empire

Wazamba is a queer fish indeed. Ostensibly an amber but one with so many bells and whistles that they make the whole fragrance an adventure. Incense is king here. Cool and ready in the top, dark and smoky in the base. That seems to be the only certainty in any wear of Wazamba. Sometimes the fruitiness plays a leading role, sometimes the various woods and sometimes the dry rasp of fern. The resins themselves are variable also. They may seem citrus, smooth, smoky, crunchy and caramelised on different days. Today, as I wear a large dose of Wazamba it seems like a smoke filled library, dry, dusty and peaceful.


Don’t forget to go across and read the other three members of the Mood Scent 4 crew:
Esperanza L’Esperessence
Megan Megan In Sainte Maxime
Samantha I Scent You A Day.

Please share your Frankincense and Myrrh faves
Portia xx



Filed under Perfume Reviews

29 responses to “Mood Scent 4: Frankincense and Myrrh

  1. Aramis Calligraphy Rose! I haven’t worn that in a while, I need to pull it out.


    • Hey OH,
      I remember how much you love it. There were a few big fans for a while. My memory is saying Gail Grose, Muse In Wooden Shoes and maybe Cassieflower? We were in the USA a few years ago and it was on sale for about $30, still kicking myself I didn’t grab it then.
      Portia xx

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Tara C

    Love Sancti and Wazamba! I would add Baume du Doge, although I’m not sure about frankincense in that one, but lots of myrrh anyway. Also Encens Flamboyant and Myrrhe Ardente from Annick Goutal.


    • Hey there TaraC,
      OH YES! I have both those Annick Goutal fragrances, and Shower Gels to match. SO GORGEOUS!
      Mildly amusing story with Tara of this blog. While we were in Venice we passed by a Burger King on our ferry to and from the action. On maybe the second last day we were there I aid, “They should call it Burger Doge here”. Cue much hilarity.
      Baume du Doge reminded me of that moment. Thanks for the happy memory smile.
      Portia xx


  3. Incense favourites. And I wear them all)
    Portrait of a Lady. (Wearing it for the third day in a row actually)
    Coromandel EdT.
    Passage d’Enfer (stunning incense, thanks Tara)
    NARS Audacious.
    IUNX. L’Ether.

    Myrrhe has to be La Myrrhe.


  4. bonkersvanessa

    Another fan of Baume du Doge here, and like you I was surprised to find myrrh in so many things, even Bronze Goddess and DKNY Gold! I love the note in Caron Parfums Sacré, Papillon Bengal Rouge, OJ Orris Noir, Armadillo Myrrhe Imperiale and more. For obvious reasons I am going to let that Armadillo run!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Lady Jane Grey

    Hah, frankincense and myrrh – nice, thank you, Portia ! Actually, probably the favourites of my later parfum years. I needed some maturing for them though… Due to the extensive amount of parfums in my collection I hardly use up a full bottle these days – but I had to re-buy two recently : Anubis by the genius Liz Moores (Papillon) with frankincense, and Black Gemstone by Stephane Humber Lucas with resins and Myrrh… Both of them have a spiritual appeal to me, they are my armour.
    Sending big hug to OZ, I‘m envious (both, for your current temperatures and freedoms…) !


    • Hi there LJG,
      So nice to see you and super glad we hit your sweet spot this month.
      Anubis is fabulous. I can see why you adore it so but pretty sure I haven’t tried the SHL.
      Are you in Vienna at the moment?
      Portia x


      • Lady Jane Grey

        Portia, dearest,
        yes, I‘m in Vienna, didn‘t leave Austria since October 19th…
        Can you remember those good old times when you came for an event to London, then you went to buy parfum to Paris and then you met crazies in Vienna ?


        • HA! FaceBook makes sure I remember every wonderful and magical event. Jan/Feb is Jin and my favourite time to travel so there have been hordes of wonderful travel memories lately. Perfume has played an enormous role in our travel choices.
          I loved meeting up with the Austrian crew and those whirlwind visits created some long time friendships that changed my life for the better. How incredibly lucky we’ve been.
          We are getting on a plane next week for the first time since Feb 2020 to go visit my favourite Aunt in far north Queensland. SO EXCITED! Hopefully Europe and America can come out of C19 quickly and with all our friends safe.
          Portia xx


  6. I must confess dear Portia, I haven’t tried any on your list, but a big fan of churchy notes, I am going to treat your post as a future shopping list! xx


  7. Love your picks, Portia! Tried Wazamba many years ago but have to try it again. Love what you say about the resins varying into citrus, caramelised or crunchy. You must get yourself a bottle of Parfum Sacre, saw them online somewhere with the leather wrap, not the Extrait thought. Have to try Goutal Mandragore Pourpre as well. Love their Encens Flamboyant and Myrrhe Ardente (and matching bath products impossible to find now). Looking forward to read your blog post on Perfume Posse! XxxEsperanza p.s. thought about the glorious Trayee too but already had a rather long list, not to mention Iunx L’Ether but as these are so hard to find didn’t include them.


    • Hey Esperanza,
      I have a 30ml purple shagreen wrapped Parfum Sacre, it’s got maybe 7ml left. I sometimes sniff the nozzle and swoon.
      I bought those Annick Goutal shower gels when they were being run out on the discounters. Bought as many as I could afford at the time. Two sizes! The 30ml have become travel shower gels, they’re so lavish.
      Yeah, now that IUNX has kicked the bucket again they are getting impossible to find. Fingers crossed for another resurrection.
      Portia xx


  8. As Val alluded, Passage d’Enfer is my favoured incense.
    I struggle with myrrh because it’s often paired with anise which I’m not keen on.
    Loved reading about all your choices.


  9. cassieflower

    Some of my favourites have already been mentioned. Anubis, Bengale Rouge, stunning. Heeley Cardinal, SJP Stash.


  10. Hi Portia, Love your list and quite a few that are new to me there apart from the gorgeous Trayee and Wazamba and I know perhaps I shouldn’t admit it but I really haven’t got my nose around the Amouage fragrances yet. Also liked reading the comments too as there are more to think about. xxx


  11. I am a perfume lover and prefer perfume as a gift. I have used Trayee by Neela Vermeire Creations and it is one of my most favorite perfumes. People who love sweet and fizzy fragrance can really try this out. I have got more good perfumes’ suggestions from your article. Thanks for sharing such lovely idea.


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