An Arielle Shoshana Blog

Le Labo Iris 39

Iris fragrances have been very popular lately, but for the most part they’ve been somewhat pale, evanescent things. Iris 39 goes in a rather different direction. Iris 39 is a spicy, full-bodied fragrance. It contrasts a rooty iris note with sweet patchouli. Interesting in concept, sure, but does it work? Almost. The patchouli here is a bit too sweet; the iris-patchouli combination produces the illusion of a chocolate note. If I find a chocolate note to be overly sweet, it is safe to say that the vast majority of the population would not find it enjoyable. If the patchouli could be toned down, I think that Iris 39 would be a very viable earthy iris (as opposed to the more common powdery irises). Love it or hate it, at least it’s something different, and I applaud Le Labo for taking a risk. Now all it needs is a little polish.

9 Responses to “Le Labo Iris 39”

  1. deeHowe

    I wish I picked up more sweetness in this one; on me, it’s very dirty & animalic— it rarely gets worn out of the house! Sweetness and chocolate? Doesn’t even sound like my bottle…

    Must be a sneaky musk I can’t smell :)

  2. MemoryOfScent

    First time I tried this I had a weird kitchen experience: raw potatoes and cooking oil. It was a scrubber for me. I smelled it once more though and it wasn’t half as bad. It is sort of an unfinished business for me and I have to dig into my sample stash to find it and give it another try.

    • Ari

      “Unfinished” is a good way to describe Iris 39, too. I see it as a great idea that needed more editing than it got. A for effort, B for execution.

  3. malsnano86

    I keep getting this one rec’d to me by people who know I like green scents (and who don’t realize the depth of my distaste for patchouli). Still haven’t tried it. Still not tempted.

  4. Undina

    I like Iris 39 (well, at least from my sample) and plan to buy a decant of it soon. It’s not sweet for me at all.


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