Olfactif is a monthly perfume sampling subscription. Every month, you’ll receive a curated collection of three niche fragrances (2.25 mL for most, occasionally 1.75 mL) by perfume artists from around the world. You will also receive an $18 credit towards a full-sized purchase of one of the month’s featured fragrances. Olfactif offers a unisex collection and recently began offering a men’s collection as well.
My Subscription Addiction paid for this subscription box. (Check out the review process post to learn more about how we review boxes.)
This review is of the Unisex Collection, $18 a month, box.
The Subscription Box: Olfactif
The Cost: $18 a month
The Products: Three 2.25 mL sample spray bottles from three fragrance artists from around the world.
Ships to: U.S.
Check out all of our Olfactif reviews and other great fragrance boxes in the Perfume Subscription Box Directory.
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Each Olfactif collection comes with a card detailing the month’s theme. This time, there was a little envelope with individual cards about the fragrances and little test strips for you to spray the fragrances on. This is useful (and way better than the ripped-up Post-It notes I was using before). There was also a notice that you can use your personal code (Olfactif emails these to subscribers) to get 20% off any full sized bottle of fragrance in their shop!
It’s important to note that fragrances may smell different when you wear them than when you spray them on a card or piece of paper. They may also smell different on different people due to individual body chemistries.
Also, the fragrances develop and change over time, with different notes becoming prominent. “Top” notes form your initial impression but evaporate within a few minutes, so you may still love a fragrance even if you are not fond of the top notes. “Middle” or “heart” notes emerge after you’ve been wearing the fragrance for a few minutes up to an hour. “Base” notes are large, heavy molecules that persist for a long time. They are often richer than the top or middle notes, although they may contribute to how you perceive the top and middle notes due to their interactions with the other fragrance components.
You or Someone Like You by Etat Libre d’Orange (full size $90 for 50 mL)
This was my favorite scent this month. Unfortunately, I can’t say a whole lot about it because Olfactif is silent as to the notes and I am just getting over a nasty sinus infection so I don’t even know if my guesses would be accurate. (Reviews on Fragrantica list things like “generic white musk,” “rose,” “peppermint,” “fruity,” “garden herbs,” “grasses,” “mojito,” etc. I definitely think I caught the musk and maybe a bit of the rose but not the green part so much.) As I said, I did like this one, but it is also somewhat generic and I feel like I’ve smelled it a half dozen times with different names.
Bracken Woman by Amouage (full size $320 for 100 mL)
Normally I love the most expensive fragrance for the month most, but I didn’t like this one at all! It reminded me of someone who smoked a bunch of cigarettes (or hung out with smokers), then decided a few hours later to (unsuccessfully) try to cover up the stale cigarette smell with perfume. This apparently includes wild berries, fern, lily, narcissus, chamomile, leather, patchouli, vetiver, and birch. I think the patchouli and some of the florals contributed to the part identified as “perfume” in the earlier scenario, but looking at that list of notes, I’m not quite sure how the end result went so wrong for me.
Ambre by Molinard (full size $65 for 75 mL)
Based on descriptions, I would’ve thought this would be my favorite for the month, and I did like it initially, but I was a little less enthusiastic as time went on. Notes for this one: coriander, myrtle, thyme, incense, amber, labdanum, patchouli, cedar, sandalwood, vanilla, musk, and tonka. I generally love incense, amber, sandalwood, vanilla, and musk, and I could definitely detect those, but those notes seemed to get weaker over time and to let something greener come through (I am not so into green scents, preferring Orientals, woods, and spices).
Verdict: This was an interesting month from Olfactif. Not everything was a hit but I do enjoy learning about new perfumeries and experiencing different scents that I’d otherwise never encounter. Not every month is going to please every subscriber – tastes in fragrance and body chemistries can be quite different – but I am happy if there is at least one fragrance I like enough to consider a repurchase, and this month I was a fan of “You or Someone Like You.”
What do you think of the April 2017 Olfactif collection? What was your favorite fragrance this month?
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