Flowerhead and Nuit Andalouse

The two newest launches from Byredo and Parfums MDCI have nothing in common in terms of scent, but are both examples of niche companies doing their takes on a crowd-pleasing perfume–and doing them well.


All of you know that I am a big Byredo fan, and I greatly looked forward to Flowerhead (created by Jerome Epinette). It doesn’t let the side down. It’s a very audacious and full-on floral, with enough jasmine and tuberose to really grab white floral fans, and enough rose and ambergris to give it a very modern character and make it evident to the nose that there is “more going on” than just white florals. I also smell some berry notes and an occasional herbaceous green waft. Although it doesn’t particularly smell the same, Flowerhead reminds me in character and tone of Vamp a NY, and I think people who like and wear Vamp a NY will really like Flowerhead. It’s a fun take on the iconic white floral idea, and Byredo have stayed true to their style.

nuit andalouse

Parfums MDCI is another of my favorite perfume lines, although my discovery and appreciation of MDCI is more recent. Nuit Andalouse is a rare creature: a violet-based perfume that isn’t precious and that doesn’t rely on iris to keep it from being precious. Perfumer Cécile Zarokian paired violet with ylang ylang, sandalwood, and a very caramel-like vanilla for a perfume that feels modern and sweet, but not girlish. The fragrance is meant to spotlight gardenia alongside the violet, but I have to say that to my nose it is heavier on ylang ylang. So it doesn’t go into competition with my pile of gardenia perfumes, but instead strikes out on its own path. If I had to compare Nuit Andalouse to something, I’d say it reminds me in character (though not in smell) of some of the delicate-but-creamy florals in the Ormonde Jayne line. Like Flowerhead, Nuit Andalouse is an example of a niche line making a very good perfume with wide appeal. And now I’ll be looking up more perfumes by Zarokian, too.

For a review of Byredo Flowerhead, see EauMG. For a review of Parfums MDCI Nuit Andalouse, see Olfactoria’s Travels.

Side notes: 1) I personally could not wear Flowerhead. Too much tuberose. 2) I am firmly in favor of the bust bottles. 

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17 responses

  1. I just smelled Nuit Andalouse the other day and loved it (didn’t buy it though, I have quite a lot of creamy white florals).
    Flowerhead sounds interesting as well, especially considering I’m wearing Vamp a NY today. ;)

  2. Big time MDCI fangirl here too, even if I only own one FB, and that’s due to expense only, or I would have more. The whole company philosophy is very sympathetic, as is Claude Marchal so I’m really looking forward to trying NA. As for the Byredos, I haven’t found one yet to persuade me, this one doesn’t sound like it either.

    • I agree about Claude Marchal – a perfume person I would like to meet someday. I wouldn’t say Flowerhead is one of Byredo’s best, so I’m not holding out hope it will win you over. :) Have you tried 1996?

      • I think I did, as Byredo is one of the brands we *do* have available here. I seem to remember liking it, but being able to count too many other superior perfumes in that genre.

  3. Enjoyed getting your take on these two recent releases. I like the image for Flowerhead and I really want to try 1996. It’s so hard to find Byredo in London.

    I also really want to try Chypre Palatin from MDCI. I think it’s in Suzanne’s Top 5.

    • It’s so interesting that Byredo isn’t well represented in London. I tend to think that London has absolutely everything, but I suppose that isn’t really true. Is MDCI not widely available either?

  4. I am a born again white floral fan, and a creamy take on the genre just ups the appeal. I would definitely like to try both of these, but wouldn’t be in the market for either if I fell for them. MDCI would ‘bust’ the wallet, in particular…;)

    • Ha! I do like a pun. They are both in the wallet-busting category for sure, and there are other MDCIs I would pick before NA, but it’s definitely nice.

  5. Flowerhead was a definite NO for me – I hate tuberose. As to Nuit Andalouse, I will try it when I get a chance because I like the brand. When I find a perfume I really love I’ll buy the presentation bottle, I think those tops are great.

    • It is so much tuberose, isn’t it!? I couldn’t do it. I’m with you on the MDCI bottles. When I find the perfect fragrance from that line, I will buy the bottle.

  6. I gave Flowerhead a cursory sniff when I was in San Francisco – Undina called my attention to it, but my mind was firmly on the Frederic Malle line, which I was re-exploring, and I couldn’t quite wrap it around the floral explosiveness of Flowerhead in that moment. I do like big florals in general, though, so I’ll sniff it again when given the chance.

    You make the Nuit de Andalouse sound reeeaally good!

    • Funny enough, I thought of you with Flowerhead, because I know you like Vamp a NY. I will be interested to hear what you think when you have the chance to sniff.

  7. Pingback: Night in the Spanish Garden-ias – Nuit Andalouse Parfums MDCI | The Sounds of Scent

  8. Pingback: Flowerhead by Byredo | The Scented Hound

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