A Seasoning of Samples: Dior Eau Noire

Opening on a bracing lavender note, Dior’s Eau Noire quickly transitions into a creamy, slightly burnt curry. While the first few moments pay homage to what we traditionally consider manly fare, it’s quickly apparent that this is a different breed entirely, taking my conception of a “masculine” fragrance* and flipping it on it’s head. After the (gorgeous) initial lavender blast, an herbal accord does continue to thread it’s way through the tapestry of development, however, this fragrance is all about the immortelle, aka, curry note. Moroccan bazaar, here we come!

Eau Noire has just the right amount of sweetness to balance the slightly burnt element, and it’s nicely tactile on the skin. I suspect that if I encountered someone wearing this scent in public, I’d follow them around a while. (Hint: I LOVE it)


  • Vanilla, Lavender, Liquorice, Vanilla Bourbon, Cedar from Virginia.


My sample came from one of my Fragrant Fairy Godmothers, Tara.

*The mainstream idea of a masculine fragrance, for, of course, we know these labels are arbitrary.

18 thoughts on “A Seasoning of Samples: Dior Eau Noire

  1. Since you liked this one it’s time to try Annick Goutal Sables, a masculine which is one of Catherine Deneuve’s favourite perfumes. As you say it twists the idea of what a masculine fragrance smells like.

    1. I love curry! Oh yeah, I wear it myself, and really enjoy doing so. I think it would smell great on a man or a woman— it’s truly neither masculine or feminine (in my opinion); I only mention it’s “masculine” status, because it’s marketed as a men’s cologne.

      Another perfume with a gorgeous curry-like note is Parfum d’Empire’s Fougere Bengale 🙂

          1. I don’t think I’ve ever encountered a note I’ve been more ambivalent about: ambivalent in the sense of having two strong conflicting opinions, not in the sense of being wishy-washy. I spent the day flipping back and forth between, “Ewww, ick!” and then “Oh wait, this is really interesting, I think I like it.” 9:00 at night I was still going back and forth.

            Personally, cumin works on me, but the jury’s still out on curry.

          2. Haha, I am familiar with the “Ewwww, ick!” followed by “Oh wait, this is really interesting…” phenomenon! Though it hasn’t happened with a curry fragrance yet…

            Maybe because I eat so much curry (probably 4-5 times per week on average— we eat a lot of curry!), those notes are more subtle on my skin allowing other elements to come forward?

    1. Weirdly, I had a dream about you last night: you were Vlogging! (you should do it, btw, you were very good at it in my dream).

      Back to business: does your skin generally amp up sweetness, or is it unique to certain notes? I get a little sweetness in EN, but just enough to balance the herbal side. Although, I should confess that my tolerance for sweet has been on the rise over the last year or so!

      1. Does “V” in “Vloging” stand for “video-“? If yes, I’ll pass: I refuse to use a camera on my computer to talk to people who know me – let alone being “out there” for all the strangers 🙂 But thank you for the flattering dream!

        Whenever anything smells too sweet for me, I feel surprised because on more than a couple of occasions I discovered that I do not smell any sweetness at all in some of the perfumes that other people describe as “too sweet” or even “cloying”. That’s why I thought it was unusual for me.

        1. It does stand for video! You know the funny part is this: in my dream, I could see thick, russet brown, shoulder length hair… But your face was blurred. Lol, maybe you will be the first perfume radio blogger! Now that’s a station I’d tune into!

          That is unusual, that notes flip-flop on you— very interesting. I’m trying to come up with a scenario that could explain such a situation, but I am dumbfounded! But that’s fun too— you have your own version of magic skin 😉

  2. What with the curry and lavender notes, this one had your name all over it!

    I can’t say it’s terribly wearable for me but I admire it hugely and own one of the little travel bottles which crop up on ebay quite regularly.

    1. So true Tara! So true: you know my tastes so well, that sometimes I think you are psychic!

      One day I’d like to have a bottle, but for now I am content with my sample and tiny bottle (how cute are those tiny bottles, btw? I want them all!!)

  3. Not my thing at all, but you’ve got to admire a perfume with a curry note – we have 10-15 curry houses in this town and about 5 other restaurants altogether. I should appreciate Eau Noire really – maybe it is the licorice or lavender that spoils it for me?

    1. Oooh, I wish there were over a dozen curry houses near me! I’d never have to cook again…. 😉

      I don’t notice the licorice, the way it’s blended causes it to disappear to my nose (interesting, since I don’t love the note), but the lavender is pretty intense up there in the top-notes. Yum!
      How do you like Fougere Bengale, I wonder?

  4. I don’t dislike this, but I don’t wear it. I have to say, Dee, and I think you will know that I mean this in a good way — I read some of the fragrances you wear (and I’m sure they smell great on you) and I think: she’s got cojones! 😉 Good on ya!

    1. Natalie, your comment made me laugh, and there is no better way to start the day as far as I’m concerned!
      Perception and skin-chemistry make all the difference— I was chatting with Anne-Marie recently about how embarrassed I felt wearing powdery/femme scents out of the house because they’re not me (but I’ve been enjoying them). I feel like it takes more cojones to leave my house in Chnael no. 5 than in Eau Noire 😉


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