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Balenciaga L`Essence Balenciaga for women

Balenciaga L`Essence Balenciaga for women
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Total people voted: 706
female 25- 25+
male 25- 25+

I have it: 475 I had it: 125 I want it: 449 My signature: 17

main accords
woody
green
powdery
ozonic
aquatic
floral
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Balenciaga L`Essence by Balenciaga is a Floral Green fragrance for women. Balenciaga L`Essence was launched in 2011. The nose behind this fragrance is Olivier Polge. The fragrance features vetiver, patchouli, violet, violet leaf, green notes, sandalwood and cedar.

Perfume rating: 4.06 out of 5 with 706 votes.

Fragrance Notes

Vetiver Patchouli Violet Violet Leaf Green Notes Sandalwood Cedar

Main Notes According to Your Votes

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Longevity

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User votes
poor 7
 
weak 16
 
moderate 41
 
long lasting 53
 
very long lasting 18
 

Sillage

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User votes
soft 33
 
moderate 87
 
heavy 24
 
enormous 18
 

This perfume reminds me of  
Balenciaga Paris
99 no yes
Pauline
3 no yes
She Wood Velvet Forest Wood
2 no yes

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Balenciaga L`Essence Fragrance Reviews

Blacknumber1
Blacknumber1

This is a frumpy grandma perfume. I have a 2.5 oz bottle up for trade. PM if interested.

Jul
25
2016
sleepy*weasel
sleepy*weasel

I love this. I didn't know what it was, I only knew I liked it. So now, looking up the notes I find cedar, violet, sandalwood. I'm such a cedar fan, it had me from hello! Elegant, expensive, exquisite are all words coming to mind. I was prepared for there to be a tea note, this is so beautifully green; it lasts all day, excellent value. Recommended to try. A personal 10/10 x

Jul
22
2016
olga_adriana
olga_adriana

I don't have that much experience with the original Balenciage Paris - only sniffed it once at the department store, after having already worn this one, and I didn't like it as much as L'Essence.
I remember smelling L'Essence on a magazine strip and thinking, "I have to have this". It was very me. i'm 25 now, i must have been 19 then. for some people thinking that this is an old-fashioned scent, i would disagree. before i was into perfumes, my 19 year old nose was drawn to this because it smelled classy, elegant, and expensive (not coincidentally).
i remember having a guy around my age ask me out after remarking how nice this perfume was on me too!
I don't even know how to describe the way this smells. Sure, the violet and vetiver are the prominent notes, but... it's so much more than that. It's just so luxurious, and i have a hard time comparing it to any other perfume that I own. It's a very special one -- something I would wear just for me though, not to impress anyone at a date, or a job interview, or a girls' night out. This is one of my "me" scents... i wear it for private enjoyment and to feel like an otherworldly classy lady.

It's just elegant, if I had to describe it in one word - without the soapiness or aldehydes that you get in other 'classic' scents. It's very sophisticated, and I don't think it is for everyone - you need to be a certain type of woman to pull this off and rock it. It's not an old fashioned scent, but it's definitely for an old fashioned type of woman, be she young or old.

Jul
19
2016
polly golightly
polly golightly

oggi indosso un profumo verde e viola: verde di note fresche e legnose di foresta, viola per la preponderanza delle violette con le relative foglie. benchè sia un accordo floreale, il bilanciamento con il vetiver, il sandalo e il legno di cedro conferisce una certa asprezza di femminilità androgina molto gradevole e perfetta per il caldo. la violetta non è dolce, tantomeno polverosa, semmai lievemente saponosa nell'assestamento (questa l'unica pecca, per me). questa fragranza somiglia a she wood velvet forest di dsquared, ma anche all'infusione di iris di prada, nonchè a Myqueen di Alexander McQueen e un tantino all'Eau de Cartier: una viola solida, verde, che sa di corteccia. molto buono.

Jun
08
2016
d'odora
d'odora

After finishing 2 bottles of the original Paris, I was ready to try this. I had heard it was somewhat similar except not so 'high' notes. I agree, this L'Eessence is dignified and more solemn, perhaps better suited to a person my age. It isn't as bright and the only way my limited perfume vocabulary describes it is- a darker version violet scented floral combo. I love it better.

Jun
04
2016
MoonSparrow
MoonSparrow

I received my mini yesterday around 2pm and dabbed some on the backs of my hands to test. When I went to bed at midnight, I could still smell it, so longevity is through the roof!

At first it seemed awfully sharp and bitter green to me, tickling my nose and aggravating the headache I already had. I didn't detect anything aquatic. There was a trace of original Paris, but this seemed colder, more austere and less floral to me. I decided I didn't care for it. Still, I left it on to see how it developed.

It took about 4 hours for the aquatic note to reveal itself and when it did, it merged with the violets, woods and greens to create a thoroughly enchanting natural aroma. Like a walk on a cliff overlooking the sea with a forest behind me; cool breeze whipping my hair around. Just lovely and lonesome, a bit sorrowful and wistful.

I actually find this to be the more mature fragrance while the original is the younger. It is not as overtly floral; it is woodsier and as I noted before, somewhat austere. I don't usually care for austere fragrances, but there is just something compelling about this. I love it.

May
22
2016
yvonne9413
yvonne9413

The drydown is like Trussardi Skin. Also detected a bit of Hermes Hiris. I smell note of iris it's strange as it's not listed. It all depends on body chemistry to make or break this perfume. Can be elegant but also serious and old ladyish

May
09
2016
genny17
genny17

This is actually a younger fresher version of Paris!! More aquatic, with a beautiful sea side breezy undertone ..nothing old fashioned about it!! I wore it all summer as it smells summery, still with a stylish vibe...Balenciaga makes quality perfumes!! It smells like the color, not in a suntan way, more like fresh air like the ocean, when summer is on its way out...sch a beautiful feminine interesting creation!!

Apr
22
2016
cstands
cstands

Balenciaga! Your perfumes are so unique and beautifully crafted!
Paris L'Essence opens all green and violetty. Pretty, but in a fairies-and-elves sort of way, rather than a pink-party-dress-for-a-princess sort of way. Dainty and understated but a total work of art, nonetheless.
As the perfumes dries down, a woody mossiness becomes stronger, but it also retains a subtle powderiness, and the violets never quite leave. There is a hint of lemon and patchouli in the dying phases. I'm not a fan of patchouli, but here the lemon (which I LOVE, though it's not listed as a note)violet balances it nicely enough to not be offensive.
I'm wearing Paris (the original) on my other wrist, and find that one slightly bolder, a little more woody and a little sweeter (in a green kind of way!)
I personally prefer the original, I think, though the two really are very similar and I'd be ever so happy to own either! (Still on the wish-list.) Might I add that the bottle are just B-E-A-Utiful too?? Biggest criticism of L'Essence is that it only lasts around 2 hours on my (dry) skin. Otherwise, the story it tells is very beautiful indeed.

Mar
26
2016
nancy.lopez
nancy.lopez

This was my second Balenciaga I purchased and I was not disappointed! It's definitely different and I've yet to smell a similar fragrance to this. It's so unique and beautiful.

After wearing it 3 different times this winter, it reminds me of banana peels. It literally smells like banana peels, probably more similar to the taste of the peel.

Anyways, there's a dry note that reminds me of deodorant residue as well. It's still one of my favs.

Feb
14
2016
genevieves
genevieves

Tried Paris today...this is definitely Paris' grandmother.

Feb
07
2016
genevieves
genevieves

I wanted so badly to like it, but...this smells too old for my grandmother to wear. :/ I can't imagine what Paris smells like if this is its younger sister...

There's also something sour in it that just makes it smell like it's gone bad. And I know my sample is fine.

Jan
11
2016
chanelnumerocinq
chanelnumerocinq

This perfume is one of the most worn and most reached for in my collection. L'Essence Balenciaga is very similar to “Balenciaga Paris” (cream & yellow color bottle). It is unnecessary to own both in my opinion but L'essence is the more interesting of the two. L'essence is violet dominant, dry woody, sweet, and slightly powdery like the original Paris. The more bitter aspects, which include vetiver and the green leafy violet leaf, counter the girlish nature of violet and make this a rather serious sophisticated scent. I find L'essence moderate in strength and a bit short in lasting power (~3 hours before I feel like I should reapply). I don’t know if others would agree with me, but I think this is a unisex scent although it is marketed to women. I hypothesize if men wore L'essence it would be very attractive on them.

Dec
19
2015
dsty
dsty

I had high hopes for this one, because I love violet scents, and I really like the look of this bottle and the marketing with Charlotte Gainsbourg. And I'm glad to say, I wasn't disappointed! Or I was, the first few times I tested my sample: I thought it was much too weak and too vague. But that's before I realized it just needs a couple of sprays more than my usual one or two; when applied generously, this really is wonderful, and potent too.

I never tried the original, so I don't know how it compares to l'Essence, but this one is 100% focused on the violets. It's less woody-green than I would have expected looking at that lovely list of notes - I don't get any vetiver, and not even that much violet leaf. That's okay, though, because the violet note itself is really great: never too sweet, waxy and bright at first and dustier and more complex later on. And as I mentioned, with enough of it applied it easily lasts all day with moderate sillage.
It's not a conspicuous kind of scent, not the kind to evoke strong love or hate, I think. It's safe, but not boring at all - "cool" and "elegant" are indeed the words to describe it, as Cunning_blue says. So it's especially fitting for work, although it can be worn in really just about any setting you could imagine. I wouldn't consider it as a signature or anything, I don't love it enough for that, but I do really like it and would like to get at least a little decant to add to my violet collection. I also wouldn't mind at all if scents like this became much more popular instead of those bombs of sweetness you smell everywhere!

Nov
18
2015
Cunning_blue
Cunning_blue

When I first smelt this perfume I was intoxicated. It was so green and cool, deep, elegant, powdery. In my opinion it's really well blended and on my skin is perfect. I can turn perfumes sour, but not this one. I can't really describe it but It makes me think of green rocks by a waterfall, forests, aromatic wood, fine silk and rose jam. It's magnificent and captivating but a little cold at heart, so was stalking it for about a year until I finally bought it. I am so glad I did! I cant wait to wear it when the winter ends.

Nov
09
2015
margarita.angelova
margarita.angelova

Hm, it's not what I expected. I thought it would be greener and fresher while in fact it smells like something by Narciso Rodriguez mixed with male cologne. It's not bad in any way but isn't interesting either. Just a regular unisex one.
The bottle is gorgeous and the ad campaign, I love Charlotte... and probably this is why I'm a bit disappointed by this scent.

Oct
10
2015
Fhaldara
Fhaldara

Violet tends to turn VERY powdery on me, usually to the exclusion of everything else so I rarely use it. This is a nice exception - the vetiver, patchouli and green notes keep it very cool and much less powdery than any other violet I've tried. And I love the elegant bottle!

Jun
14
2015
genny17
genny17

I like it, better than the original, which was a tad too old fashioned for me, too much Violet fbut Essence is cleaner, more modern, and far from being crap!!! You might not like it, but Polge doesn't create crappy fragrances..might be some people' s nose cannot recognize beauty in some fragrances!!!
Seriously, this is balmy, interesting scent, the base is warmer, but stays overall breezy..nothing harsh or heady here...I like it, it isnt my favorite, but it has a real clean unique vibe!!

Mar
16
2015
stella-00
stella-00

absolutelly beautiful, extremely elegant classy smell. I would put it into Prada D'Iris and La perla La perla and may be Eau des Mervilles range.....No, it does NOT smell like those, but i would classify those perfumes as high class business-elegant, turn-head-chanel-suit-like. I see the woman with beautiful straight glossy hair, sofisticated and elegant, carrying a good-quality leather bag... Not a 'date' perfume. But DAY perfume. Adore it!!!!



Nothing fruity/gourmand, just crisp, fresh, nice smell. don't read it wrong: NOT aquatic fresh.

Thanks Lynda for the sample, - i am going to buy a bottle today. The biggest i can get!

Jan
30
2015
Fragrantnatic
Fragrantnatic

This opens on a very strong grass-like scent, I guess that's the violet leaf, its pungent to my nose.. don't really like this.. sorry...

Jan
17
2015
PerfumeEmpress
PerfumeEmpress

What a disappointment this frag was. I admit that I usually go for spicy, heady scents. But I am also able to appreciate a nice fresh scent when the temperature is high. I'm not saying it's bad. It's just so ... granola. So quiet, so tame, so painfully politically correct you might as well not bother. A scent for tree-huggers. Or for those who go into hysterics and scream "Old lady!" if they smell anything stronger than chamomille tea. Staying power is practically null, too. What a pity.

Dec
02
2014
relle
relle

This one surprised me. I got it in a blind swap. After reading the reviews I was apprehensive about the Farenheit vibe; not a fan. Soft, classy violets predominate. No 80's loudness here, this is a subtle skin scent with great longevity. Personally, I'm glad that the patch, vetiver, sandalwood combo is light-handed, not taking away from the sophisticated floral. It reads multi-seasonal to me, multi-functional, from a hiking trail to boardroom, to the opera, where whispering speaks louder than a brassy, shouting scent. It could be considered unisexy with it's "after the rain" vibrancy. What a delightful change for my unusually heavy white (floral) collection.

Nov
21
2014
TillyWave
TillyWave

Hmm. I am a little ticked off, mostly at myself. Yes, yes, I swapped for this unsniffed and that's totally my fault. But you see, I was very happy with the original Balenciaga, I felt it was true to its form, at least in the modern interpretation of the Chypre Floral, the violet/carnation/cedar/airy greens were nicely done...so I looked at this with great interest, a Green Floral version of Balenciaga? Look at all those beautiful wood notes, I must try this...I imagined the green florals of yore, with deep woody bases, and was intent on finding this...

Well. This is NOT a green floral. It is an aquatic/ozonic floral. I smell a cross between a watermelon and the entrance of Abercrombie and Fitch in the top notes, over a weak, watery violet leaf. Perhaps that's what passes for green nowadays.

The violets are there, they barely hold their own...against the Iso E Super/CRAP "WOOD" base that stand in, unfortunately, for most woods in modern perfumes. I'm sorry, but there is no vetiver, sandalwood, patchouli, or cedar in this composition. It's just that laundry musk "wood" that smells to me like burning dryer sheets. Ugh. That's pretty much the perfume--watermelon, ozonic cologne, violet, and a synthetic "wood" base.

Utter crap, the packaging probably had more thought and materials put into it, and this is why I've had it with modern perfumes...

Nov
16
2014
Mnekb
Mnekb

It's perfect for the rainy winter nights! It feels like i'm walking on moist stony green road surrounded by ancient plane trees when it's cold and rainy but I must say it smells really bad in hot weather. In summer, it smells like water in a vase full of flowers have waited for months.

Nov
11
2014
the_new_esta
the_new_esta

This dries down to a LOT of sandalwood. I wish it didn't, because the opening is sooo beautiful :(.

Oct
22
2014
tinekesmellsamazing
tinekesmellsamazing

Smells wonderful and warm on my skin, kind of like an Aveda hair oil I had for years, which smells aromatic, yet not sticky or cloying. The violet is way more noticeable in the original version in my opinion. I had a hard time choosing between the two, gonna get the other one later though, they are so similar yet far apart. The original is very - extremely - flowery-fresh smelling, like enjoying a big ass bouquet in front of you whilst sucking on a dozen of those Flavigny Violet Pastilles.

Aug
16
2014
Fioletowy
Fioletowy

agentj, thank you so much for clearing that up for me. Now I know what to avoid.
I love the bottle too.

Aug
06
2014
agentj
agentj

Fioletowy, I believe ozone is the name of the smell you are trying to describe. It's the smell of thunderstorms, when lightning is about to strike as well, hence your connection to static. For me, I wanted to love this for the sandalwood, but it had a distinct cumin smell that I could not get past. Glad to know it's good on others though, I love the bottle.

Aug
03
2014
Fioletowy
Fioletowy

I LOVE this perfume. I'm a big fan of all things violet - hence the user name - and this is perfect.
Almost perfect. There is a phase as it develops where I can smell, for want of a better term, 'static' as in the static electricity smell around computers. I can't explain. I don't like it because it's a smell I associate with cheap perfume and this most decidedly is not.
Fortunately, that phase doesn't last long and the initial smell and dry down are so lovely.
Can anyone tell me the correct name of that nasty smell?

Aug
03
2014
Lana148
Lana148

Balenciaga L`Essence Cristobal is a perfect example of an old & new school perfumery coming together. New minimalism and unisex style mixed with some vintage, classic notes.

This is very classy, "Green" fragrance. Ozonic-powdery-green-woody. Not too sweet. There is also some violet here but it is not very prominent. Not the most natural green fragrance I ever smelled. It's more metro-metallic green.

L`Essence Cristobal belongs in a same line of fragrances as Chanel Cristalle or #19's.

Jul
16
2014
perfumeaddiction
perfumeaddiction

Ok I decided to edit this after I gave the perfume some time. First I would not spray directly heavily on your skin. When I did this I got a mild BO scent however when I spray in the air and run my arm through it smells lovely.

It's somewhat animalic in nature and my husband seems to love it. Definitely a different pefume. Different then many that I own. Not sure what gives it that edgy mild bo thing but it's very similar to Dolce Vita on dry down. The newer Dolce not the vintage. What is even stranger is my husband loves this and the Dolce. Who knows. Maybe a pheromone thing going on here? I wonder if guys in general would find this sexy. I would wear it and it's not like your ranking of onion BO - I just can't quite explain myself here. There is an animalic thing going on. Good? Bad? You must decide for yourself.

Jul
14
2014
Museumgal
Museumgal

Cool green violet, crisp and watery. Just a touch masculine, more cool and clean than powdery. Not too sweet but an elegant cold floral for spring. Very spring like, an almost frosty feel to the florals. Good for work -- the sillage stays very close to your skin so you won't overwhelm anyone.

Jul
05
2014
Fonna2
Fonna2

I actually have Balenciaga Paris 10 Avenue George V L'essence.
I don't know if there is a difference.

However, I will review what I have:

I find this particular scent must be sprayed on top of the wrist, or you won't get a scent at all.
Very sheer, translucent, not much of a sillage.
It's a pleasant fragrance. Starts off very lemony, mandarin-y then grassy with a few sweet flowers in the background, and finally a woody violet note that seems to stay.....all within one hour.

Lasting power? It will stay on your skin for a good 6 hours, however, no one will know you're wearing it but you, and maybe someone close to your skin.

I would consider this a good layering perfume if anything.

May
28
2014
missk
missk

I'm quite taken with Balenciaga L'Essence and it has come as quite a surprise to me. I wasn't overly moved by the original Balenciaga Paris, however this fresher take on violet is rather beautiful and energizing on my skin.

I struggle to find lighter scents that suit my chemistry and wear well during an Australian Summer. As odd as this may sound, I compare Balenciaga L'Essence to the feeling of having just brushed your teeth. It provides that same clean, cooling and minty-fresh sensation.

Very rarely do I find a violet fragrance that is neither candied nor powdery. After having smelt Balenciaga L'Essence I would love to see more 'fresh violets' on the market.

It's unfortunate that Australia is now going into Winter, as I would have loved wearing this fragrance during the warmer months. However with that being said, Balenciaga L'Essence could work well during Autumn too as the sillage allows for some versatility.

Vetiver was a brave choice by perfumer Olivier Polge, and I must say that it blends so well with the violet in the drydown. What I love most about Balenciaga L'Essence is that it smells almost masculine, not nearly as feminine as the ad campaign suggests it might be.

For a 'Summer scent', Balenciaga L'Essence has superb longevity and a fairly strong throw. I can't believe it has taken me so long to get around to testing this flanker. I am more than impressed.

May
27
2014
Silences
Silences

L'Essence is reminiscent of Balenciaga Paris but I prefer it much more. It's a clean, subtle, green version and for this time of year, just perfect. It reminds me of the great French perfumes that linger and evolve.

I was one of the lucky ones that was able to pick this up for $30. I was so impressed I went back the next day for the $40 large bottle. Outside of working directly for Coty, I don't think you could do much better.

I'd say this fragrance would be for the person who is attracted to the "almost unisex" style scents like Chanel Chance fraiche, Versace Versence, even Dioressence. It is a wonderful addition to my collection. I can't wait to wear it.

May
19
2014
amelie
amelie

Now after wearing it for a while I can say that Balenciaga really reminded me of Eau de Cartier. It is in fact unisex, but I can handle it. Smells clean, refreshing, just perfect for spring/summer season.
Not a champion in longevity, may be felt for about two hours and disappears. Nevertheless, I'd be glad to come to this lovely creation again.

May
18
2014
VeeNVegas
VeeNVegas

WIllfulmiss...L'Essence is a beautiful, green scent... especially if you love violets! This is a very elegant, classy scent. Definitely buy it if you can get it for $30! I've been checking my local discount stores for my back up bottle.

May
07
2014
ChypreAnn
ChypreAnn

L'Essence is a marvelous GREEN scent. It's not really woody to me -- more like grass. It has a touch of sweetness and a slight powdery quality. It's like a contemporary reinvention of Chanel Cristalle, closer to it than other green scents like Prada Infusion d'Iris or Diptyque Eau de Lierre (and with FAR better sillage and longevity). L'Essence is what I wanted all those to smell like. You can wear this perfume anywhere; it is never going to be inappropriate. While I wouldn't say it's weak, I do really like that it's forgiving and won't make anyone choke if you get a little carried away when spraying it, as I usually do (grin).

Apr
20
2014
SabrinaBD
SabrinaBD

At first I was hesitant. Its a big, round fragrance. It's unusual and has a significant sillage. You will be noticed in this fragrance. Not in a "fumigate the elevator" way, but in a "heads turn as you pass" kind of way. It's elegant, sexy and a bit unexpected. Spicy, woodsy and a small bit of floral.

Apr
05
2014
lyciumchld
lyciumchld

Very, very woody. The drydown gives the occasional citrus hint, with a bit of powder. It conjures images for me of a Victorian matron: worldly, wise, reserved, proper, coiffed, and poised. It's nice, but not me.

Mar
10
2014
Hrisi
Hrisi

Here's my promised review from January 13.
The pros of the perfume: It has good durability and sufficient strength of the scent. It is fresh and to some skins develops great .... but not on mine.
Cons: Turns out too green for my taste. Besides the smell of vetiver don't reflect well. Yes, it's true that exudes freshness, but for me is too fresh. I see before me have mentioned it, that there are some unisex note that bother me.
It was a gift to my sister by her mother in law, she gave it to me, and now I give it to my mother. What a circle! What to do, just not my scent, this is it!

Mar
01
2014
henri345que
henri345que

I find this fragrance very interesting, a chic take one a very loved and, due to this, overused essence: violet. What makes me intrigued about it is that i cannot decide if it's more masculine with a delicate side or more feminine with a rough edge. It's both maybe? It tries to find a balance between the violete leaves, the sweet, sugary violet flowers, the slightly rubber and leathery side of some violet materials and the clean, laundry-like aspects that other violet chemicals possess. They aren't very intense, it feels more like a blurred, watercolor impression. Altough there are some woody notes listed, they don't make the base super woody or dry, as if the base followed the fragile balance of soft-rough with some creamy woody impressions and something more discretly dry.
It's a beautiful fragrance, not one that relies on innovation, but one that makes me think that beauty is able to be created with known melodies played on the right way.

Feb
24
2014
spidola
spidola

One of the most elegant perfumes ever!

It’s woody, fresh and powdery, without any sweetness. It’s delicate, but with strong character. It’s simple like the sunshine in the autumn forest, but also complicated and with thousand faces like the nature can be. It’s not suffocating, but it’s impossible not notice it…and it’s so relaxing!
I cannot imagine my wardrobe without it… I wear it always when I want to leave good impression, but mostly just for myself when I need to clarify my thoughts and find the inner peace.

Feb
19
2014
icekat
icekat

A graceful rider on a white horse is dashing through the morning mist on a beautiful spring day. The calm serenity of green scenery is surrounding her while the birds are greeting the arrival of the first light. The dawn is breaking, softly unveiling the mystery of a new day. The air is filled with a scent of fresh leaves, mist and a gentle scent of leather. This beautiful moment is captured perfectly in the soft, elegant and fresh scent of Balenciaga L’Essence.

The composition is centered on the violet leaf with its gentle green and fresh beauty. It is so soft and calm, cool and refreshing. I love how the composition creates this aura of freshness without going into the laundry or straight-out-of-shower scent category. It is clean but also very sophisticated. As the composition develops, there is a gentle leather scent that is layered on the green notes. The floral presence is only slightly powdery and never overpowering. All notes are perfectly woven together creating this absolutely gorgeous and elegant scent. The scent is not too strong, but it certainly is noticeable and lasts for hours.

This is a great everyday scent. Sophisticated yet subtle and easy to wear. I love this scent and would not hesitate to recommend it. Overall score 8.5/10

Feb
16
2014
Trebix
Trebix

I have been stalking this perfume for quite some time. I tried it on at a Sephora sometime last fall. As I walked around the mall I fell in love with the scent that was wafting around me. A floraly powdery cloud of heaven! Just recently I happened to be at Marshall's and saw this by the checkout at half of the price and I just had to have it. What a lucky day, I love it more than I did before. This may be my signature scent for this spring.

Feb
06
2014
houstcs
houstcs

Why do I get iris in this, anyone else having that experience. The first few times I didn't. Anyway, this is a great scent which I like a little better than Paris.

Jan
29
2014
lauren.gonzalez.963
lauren.gonzalez.963

PURRRR, Im in LOVE! Although I feel like there are a few cheaper fragrances that smell slightly similar, the subtle notes of sandalwood and cedar in such a fresh/green fragrance are why I cant replace it. Currently for a steal at Marshalls, Im not sure I would spend the actual full price of 100+ for this. The longevity of this is pretty good (after an 8hr day at work, i couldnt smell it but my aunt said, "OH Y GOD! YOU SMELL LIKE YOU JUST GOT OUT OF THE SHOWER!" and demanded to know what it was. Its definately a winner.

Jan
15
2014
Hrisi
Hrisi

A gift from my sister...
I'm not a fan of violet or green notes, patchouli either .... but this perfume is not bad. It is still early to say anything in particular, but after using it longer will supplement. So far ..... perfume is interesting ....

Jan
13
2014
Jerine123
Jerine123

This fragrance is truly amazing and I think it is going to be my signature scent. I love the green and violet. It is earthy and springtime fresh along with a beautiful powder and softness. Similar to Balenciaga Paris which I also LOVE but this one has a little more green, a little more umph and is just lovely. The scent is like true heaven~ I am so impressed with Oliver Polge and after checking him out, I can see that he has created several fine fragrances which are in my top top top drawer. Wow!

Jan
09
2014
TylerTremallose
TylerTremallose

Found this little gem for only $20 at Marshalls so I HAD to get it.

I loved the cute little bag it came in when I opened it up which made it a lovely surprise!

Now to the scent..

Its a very lovely green scent that opens with a nice vetiver and violet. As it settles down, it fades into a beautiful cedar/sandalwood scent.

It doesnt last long on me, maybe about 5 hours at the most, but after about the 3rd hour, its not as strong, but its not too subtle. By the 5th hr or so, depending how much I spray, it turns into a subtle scent thats very close to the skin

Dec
31
2014
Arlene-Beatrix
Arlene-Beatrix

Too strong green to my nose. However, it is not bad fragrance, it is just a matter of taste. It smells like a forest after rain. Fresh, green, little woody.

Dec
31
2014
Veratruffle
Veratruffle

L'essence is a refined smell of freshly cut bouquet of violets just brought in from the forest so it s still has some notes of wood and just a touch of green. Wonderful powdery mostly violet aroma, with long lasting power that stays close to skin. It feels luxurious, will not change on the skin, only softens a bit. Beautiful packaging -bottle in a small pouch.

Dec
30
2014
Elisa S
Elisa S

Contrary to what I had thought, this is actually a quite heavy and "perfumery" scent. It seems to belong in the intersection between male cologne and heady evening perfume for women (but without flowers or much sweetness). It seems dark, calm and elegant. But for me, it is too heady and headache causing - though in the dry down, it gets softer.
The longevity is great.

Dec
22
2013
0lga5
0lga5

It was a blind buy, I wanted something green and not sweet and flowery.
After reading all the reviews I thought that no way I wouldn't like it. I was wrong. It smells too masculine, dry and stays on for a why, though I wish it didn't. ..

Dec
10
2013
sandrajj
sandrajj

Thanks to all you 'reviewers' I am surrounded by the beautiful fragrance of L'Essence. I've worn Paris for a couple of years, and adore it--but this is just something else. I also have Ulrich Lang's Lightscape, and wear it often, which is quite similar to L'Essence--not as good sillage or longevity.
I seem to be in my Violet years!!!
Highly recommend, and yes it's definately Unisex.

Nov
29
2013
sandrajj
sandrajj

I love Balenciaga Paris, and thought I'd give this a try after reading reviews here. & I am soooo glad I ordered it!
I am loving the violets, of course, but the whole list of notes pleases me.
Very classy, and now probably my new "What is that wonderful fragrance??" surrounding me.
Silage is close, I think. Longevity is around 8 hours on me.
Highly recommended.

Oct
28
2013
ro_ro_123
ro_ro_123

This is an absolutely stunning fragrance. I actually prefer L'essence to the original Paris. Aside from the actual fragrance, the packaging is gorgeous, it also comes with a silk-like draw string pouch which is great for travel.

This fragrance to me feels very androgynous, it is for a personality and sense of style as opposed to a gender, which to me, is how all amazing perfumes/colognes are.

I would wear this in any season, I also find it transcends very well from a day to night setting.

If you are after a perfume that screams "Look at me!" This may not be for you. L'essence is very refined and elegant and is the type of perfume that catches peoples attention in a subtle manner but will always have you receiving compliments.

I'm a huge fan of all the Balenciaga fragrances brought in under Nicolas Ghesiquere, but L'essence for me is by far the best.

Oct
21
2013
kelleybelle
kelleybelle

What a gorgeous scent! I tried it today for the first time. Apparently it's a linear fragrance but the drydown is a little different than the initial offering on the skin. It's so rich and velvety, and plush and suede-like. Perfect for winter, rich, semi-sweet and warm. For those not interested in smelling like a teenager, as the lady at the Balenciaga counter in The Bay told me :) Recommended.

Sep
18
2013
cobralily
cobralily

I think this is a beautiful compilation. The more I wear it, the more I like it. The sandalwood and violet are elegantly balanced. I agree it's not the most "feminine" scent. To me it is strong, slightly intense and a bit serious, but very beautiful.

Aug
25
2013
amelie
amelie

Lovely, not too strong, quite feminine, not so noticeable, more close to the skin scent. I think I've found a new ¸floral green I would always love to have. This is so subtle, gentle, almost like a shadow.
Although there is no similarity, there's a note that irresistibly recalls the aristocratic touch of Cartier's So Pretty. And I love it!

Aug
24
2013
Fmcandy
Fmcandy

This one was a gift, at first I like it, but I was expecting something exotic from balenciaga, maybe like a comme des garçons scents. None of that. It s not a common scent but its a bit commercial. I think I really don't like violets, that s what I felt more on the drydown. Too metallic and cold form my taste.

Aug
18
2013
soonflower
soonflower

So soft, delicate but simply irresistible.
It's crisp, woody and fresh.
It's so 'natural' like a second skin.
Very longlasting and inoffensive.
I find L'Essence very feminine.

Perfect day scent.

Aug
17
2013
Shemarie
Shemarie

I love this. Powdery , green and a touch of sweetness. It is heavier than most of the green scents I have worn. This is my go to green scent for winter.

Aug
14
2013
Aeris
Aeris

This is a beautiful, green, organic scent. I wore it to bed & I felt like I was taking a nap in a forest. The moss, violets, & wood notes work well together. It's a skin scent for sure, so I'll save it for bedtime so I can have sweet dreams as I drift off to sleep in a forest.

Aug
13
2013
Elisa S
Elisa S

I have mixed feelings about this one. I was hoping to love it - and I do really like some of its aspects and the whole ìdea about the smell of a wet forest. And I think it is well crafted. But it was just not what I was hoping for: For my taste, the fragrance smells too heavy and "masculine". An overload of strong vetiver and violet leaves. I don't get much green, freshness or water.
It may smell wonderfull on, or to, somebody else.

Aug
10
2013
ivy818
ivy818

It's so funny to me that everyone mentions how masculine this fragrance is, while it is one of the most feminine fragrances in my collection! It is outside of my norm, but I was looking for something earthy, clean, light, and beautiful to wear in the summer to replace all of my typical heavy, foresty scents. The crushed violet leaves, the dampness, the cedar...what a beautiful fragrance!

Jul
10
2013
Jitterbug Perfume Lover
Jitterbug Perfume Lover

I received a large bottle of this fragrance when I purchased Balanciaga Paris. I can honestly say that I would never have tried this on my own based on the notes and because I almost NEVER go for watery clean scents; I prefer florals. Man, oh man, am I ever glad to have met this fragrance! I am so in love!

This scent reminds me of the first time I backpacked through Europe. I would say that the women in Paris were pretty much "sex-bomb" sexy, meaning, that they had such a feminine sexiness that they really played up, like Bridget Bardot. But in Rome, I noticed that the women were "elegantly" sexy, meaning that they also oozed sexiness, but in a much more subdued elegant way, like Yvonne De Carlo in her modeling days. This is how I would describe Belanciaga L'Essence; it's elegantly sexy, not sex-bomb sexy. It's subdued and mysterious, not va-va-voom vampy.

The first few minutes was a blast of vetiver that almost smelled too masculine to me, but I stayed with it to see where it would go. The woods came out next, along with the ozone, then it settled into a soft violet and watery scent, THEN, much to my surprise, it smelled exactly like a light feminine version of Dior Fahrenheit, probably THE sexiest scent ever on a man! I even looked up the notes on Fahrenheit, and found that many of them were the same. I love love love this fragrance and I am looking forward to spending lots of time together.

Jun
19
2013
genny17
genny17

I don't know about that one, I kind of like it, but it isn't for me, something harsh, dry in the scent, I suspect the vetiver, so I wouldn't buy it I can see that in summer, it would be invigorating, but it isn't what I am looking for. It lacks prettiness and softness

May
15
2013
thazinha30
thazinha30

Blagh, something in this perfume smells awful to me, not sure what... maybe the vetiver... or sandalwood? Im not really an expert in perfume notes so all i can say is that every time i smell "that" in a perfume i automatically wrinkle my nose. I wish i could smell it on someone else to see if it smells differently on them.

May
08
2013
salkie
salkie

Cucumbers anyone? I smells like cucumbers to me. I don't mind it though. It reminds me of cucumber eye makeup remover at times...

May
08
2013
salkie
salkie

Cucumbers anyone? I smells like cucumbers to me. I don't mind it though. It reminds me of cucumber eye makeup remover at times...

May
08
2013
PolarBear2
PolarBear2

This perfume offers nothing interesting for me and smells like a diluted version of Balenciaga Paris which I have with a little green. VEry casual scent for me and I cannot wear it daily to work , its boring for me.

May
01
2013
fdmc
fdmc

I Love Balenciaga.
This essence has a unique style, very feminine, sensual and sophisticated.
This scent is fresh but has a very strong character.
This luxurious fragrance is extremely harmunious.
I recommend.

Apr
11
2013
carolleelou
carolleelou

I love this perfume and I also find it the younger wilder sister to Balenciaga Paris which I adore. I have to say that I had unknowingly made my own version of L'Essense by layering Bond No. 9 Cooper Square and Balenciaga Paris - same end results (maybe a little deeper wood) but quite similar. Has a smoldering masculinity to it that is very sexy.

Mar
16
2013
messier42
messier42

This is a lovely perfume. The opening for me was quite a surprise, it was more sweet and feminine than I expected. Smooth and unique as others have said. After a couple of hours it smelled really woody and had a subtle warmth to it, but remained feminine. The masculine side only came out on me right at the end, after a good few hours of wear, the woods have settled down, and whatever remains does smell unisex. It's been a pleasant surprise for me, I was expecting something harsher and more masculine. It's really lovely, a quality fragrance.

Mar
14
2013
Assiduosity
Assiduosity

L’Essence de Cristobal Balenciaga is a light airy perfume resembling the half remembered memories of an evening perilously misspent.

Opening with an unexpected and unmentioned citrus jam note, the fragrance is soon subsumed into a vast array of flowers, all violets.

One could be deceived for thinking this the scent of a simple and straightforward young woman. That would be a mistake.

An internal accord of complexity and steely determination manifests itself in a vetiver, lawn grass and cedar tree background that gives the whole package genuine staying power and silage whilst remaining defiantly unsweet and uncute.

This silk ball gown contains a young woman with a past that stretches back long before last night.

And as for men? They will come and go and some of them will smell, for a time at least, of violets too.

This is a concise version of the review, made brief for ease of reference.

A full text can be found at theperfumeddandy.com

Feb
19
2013
blauriche
blauriche

It's definitely feminine, but somehow it's one of the few women's fragrances I, as a man, feel comfortable wearing. I think it's incredibly beautiful, though it's not something I'd wear all the time.

Jan
02
2013
RkrChk
RkrChk

This is the classy, youthful sister of She Wood, Trussardi Skin and McQueen's My Queen Light Mist...

I sprayed She Wood on my right hand, Trussardi Skin on my left, and L'Essence on both crooks of my elbows [the inside of the elbow]...I had my college-aged son test-sniff, and he surmized the same as I -- they are related, but L'Essence has that youthful wow factor that the other two do not...

Don't get me wrong -- I love the other two [or three for that matter - McQueen was swapped out because on my skin, it was way too clonish of Skin & She Wood]...I've even compared notes in the aformentioned lovely frags and the notes in common include the violet leaf, patchouli, citrus and/or vetiver, cedar and sandalwood...Either combo of these notes are outstandingly sexy in a very close-to-the-skin but certainly not boring manner...

L'Essence is the little sister that comes off subdued, but really isn't...She is the one who beckons daringly with that flirty, 'come closer' look in a classy, new money way...

Nov
29
2012
pingui
pingui

I agree with everyone who thinks this fragrance could be worn by either a male or a female. Well, most fragrances are this way, but this lends itself to more traditional gender fragrances roles. That said, I am a woman, but I come by it as someone who grew up in the country, playing in the woods with boys, experiencing nature from 4 seasons. I am probably more tomboy today than the girliest of girls. I rarely if ever reach for an overt floral fragrance, so this fits that bill wonderfully.

My first fragrance was Dior's Eau Sauvage, so clearly I love vetiver, citrus, and basil.

More recently, I discovered Ellen Tracy's Bronze. The violet notes in this are exactly the same as this fragrance, so perhaps I am a violet lover as well. Although after that these two fragrances go in separate directions.

L'Essence concentrates on more woody, damp mossy black earth. It is a walk in the woods after a rain. I keep thinking it takes a turn downward, down in mood, down rolling around on the ground squishing damp violet leaves.

Bronze is much brighter. It uplifts the spirit with oranges and sparkling lemonade before it settles into violets, cedar and vanilla with a hint of coconut. It is a summery day fragrance.

So you might ask yourself, which one do I prefer? Bottles alone, no question, L'Essence. Juice is more difficult because I think that it just depends on your mood. Today, I am coming out of a cold, rainy, dreary day that was yesterday. (I wore Mitsouko yesterday). The weather today is sunny, a bit warmer but still cool with the remaining dampness. L'Essence fits that day in my mind. Watery, cool, clear but not yet bright. It is the mountain lake after a rainstorm. Everything is calm, the water like glass albeit a green inky glass. Still.

Nov
28
2012
thesol
thesol

NOT TOO FEMININE nor masculine.(For me, Paris was just common powdery-floral parfume like Channel no.5) After something keen and leafy, powdery and a bit musky(not soapy) scent leaves on my skin very long time. Bought it a few days ago, and satisfied with the purchase.

Nov
22
2012
joplinbaby
joplinbaby

makes me zen! best perfume/therapy ever

Nov
21
2012
adriana.uvé
adriana.uvé

essence and paris: big mistakes in my skin... so disappointed, because these two were my birthday presents. too masculine, for me :~(

Nov
14
2012
sherapop
sherapop

Balenciaga PARIS L'ESSENCE is a slightly tweaked flanker of the popular Balenciaga PARIS, the primary difference being that the flanker contains more wood than the original. This extra woodiness brings L'ESSENCE a bit closer to Dsquared SHE WOOD and Ellen Tracy BRONZE. It's the sort of combination--woody, watery, violet--which people are either going to take to or not. So anyone who likes one of these perfumes is likely to appreciate all the others. They all have a somewhat synthetic sheen to them, but it's not an off-putting one to me. I also happen to love violet and violet leaf, which are key to all of these perfumes.

People who do not like violet will find little of interest here. L'ESSENCE, like its namesake, is light and refreshing, slightly woody, somewhat sweet but somehow simultaneously aquatic. The least expensive of the rash of recently launched perfumes in this style is by far Ellen Tracy BRONZE, which I recommend as a high-value, low price alternative to the Balenciaga compositions, though I expect that their price, too, will drop soon. The bottle of the Balenciaga perfumes is much nicer, to my eyes, but the composition is not very different from the less expensive perfumes of this type.

Nov
14
2012
siying.hong
siying.hong

For some reason, this smells artificial and rather plastic, that it induced headache for me!

I guess this doesnt work for my nose.

Oct
21
2012
natural
natural

wow this smells really nice! a clean, deep, unisex scent! I usually don't like watery scents, but this one is different! it gets a bit powdery in the dry down - it reminds me of Chanel 19 Poudre! beautiful!

Oct
20
2012
nannaje
nannaje

This is quite similar to Paris, but the strong vetiver note makes it 5% too masculine for me. I swapped it in here last week for an original Addict, but I think I may buy it again in the future... I really like the smell. I would swap anything for an original Addict; my lovelovelove :)

Sep
02
2012
LittleRed
LittleRed

L'Essence is very similar to Paris with prominent violet and violet leaf. The green, crisp metallic tinge is still present. However, it is an earthy, smoky, more soil-infused violet whereas Paris is an above-ground dewy floral.

L'Essence and Paris share the same character, but L'Essence reminds me of the spring garden under a sky filled with grey storm clouds, a crisp wind is blowing, the air is thick with earthy smells and imminent rain. Paris is the same garden after the rain, fresh, floral, and moist, with the sun gleaming through the clouds.

It's a little more introspective than Paris, but both are beautiful renditions of violet, dependent on your mood, and I find for myself, the weather too.

Aug
28
2012
ThePixie
ThePixie

This is a wonderfully clean, green-spicy, assertive scent that can be worn by men or women, having no sugary sweetness whatsoever. It reminds me of evergreen trees and green pepper...such a unique scent. I have a small sample of it and am still contemplating getting a full bottle (it's pretty darn expensive) but since I keep coming back to it and not hating it at all in the least, it wouldn't be a surprise if a bottle of it showed up in my possession sometime.

Go for this if you want a unique, fresh, woodsy green scent. It's beautifully, complexly wonderful.

Aug
11
2012
beatrix75
beatrix75

excelent greean creamy frag OMG its what i imagine about a greean parfum ,long long lastin powder superb!!!!!!!

Aug
10
2012
dusty24
dusty24

does this smell anything like Borsari Violetta de Parma does any other perfume smell like it ?

Aug
09
2012
evacecilias
evacecilias

Wow ! Tried this some months ago at Amsterdam airport, I liked it, the bottle is gorgeous but my husband said...nothing special. Now WEARING it due to a lovely swap with Jaspersen (thanks)- I have to disagree with my husband, cause this is ~ special ! The sweet and tender violet, cedar and soft creamy patchoulie is wonderful on me ! The first snif reminded me of Blvgari Mon jasmin noir that I have had and loved, it reminded me of the soft nougat in that one, though this one lacks. The cedar and patchoule is notes that are similar to both !
It also has a tiny character of Spears Believe, but dont tell that to this house...they may get discouraged !
This is lovely, to me very much like Mon Jasmin noir, even the bottle is as pretty I'm in love again !
could´t resist getting me a 30 ml....
Mmmm
This is even wearable a day with nasty headace...kind of soothing to wear !

Jul
23
2012
amywamywoo
amywamywoo

Wow this is so beautiful, such a pretty scent yet could easily be worn by a man. it's fresh and spicy, feels heavy yet isn't.
I did test this on paper and thought it smelt quite generic and boring, however i recieved a sample with a purchase and quickly went on to buy a 50ml perfume and lotion set.

Edit:
I've since had to let this bad boy go, my sister said it smelt like mens cologne!
Luckily for me the original Paris smells almost the same, yet has no masculine edge.

Jun
28
2012
mediterranean
mediterranean

This one has a masculine edge,I guess it is part of its charm. Also I find a very intriguing metallic note and sandalwood. The drydown gets powdery soft and elegant.
If I had to imagine a woman wearing it, I would say she is a modern independent working lady,conventional in manners but not in her thoughts or believes, who does not pay attention to what people say about her,minds her own business because they are interesting enough. She could easily be a writer or an editor.She is the one all men want because she is a difficult one to reach.

Jun
19
2012
katemcq
katemcq

I agree with the person who noted a similarity, initially, to Prada Infusion d'Iris. And I agree with all who say they get a lot of powder. And I agree there's strong cinnamon in this scent. AND I agree with Baldric in that there's a very ripe fruity smell as well - only to my nose, it isn't banana but cranberry and apple.

When you take the cranberry and apple together with the cinnamon, you get mulling spices.

So, if you like mulling spices and powder, this might be for you. It is unisex, but it also reminds me a lot of Edge shaving gel. Just sayin'.

All that said, I'm not quite ready to throw out the sample - it could work well at the office, probably best in cool weather.

Jun
11
2012
virga
virga

Balenciaga L’essence is a very good quality long lasting unisex scent. It is deeper, darker and younger then Paris. I can detect dewy violets leafs, cedar and orris root. Patchouli is very mild; nothing in your face, nothing cheap. First half an hour it smells like a forest after rain - the soil, cold groundwater, wet leafs. The drydown is more sensual, even sweet, but in a very subtle way. Perfect for summer.

May
28
2012
Baldric
Baldric

I should really know better than to judge a fragrance by its top notes. I thought since this was new, and mainstream that it would be safe to assume that my opinion of the top notes would carry over throughout the development of the fragrance and i was most certainly wrong.

The start of this reminded me so much of over ripe bananas that I immediately added the sample to a pile I have that go to my friend to try. 10 minutes later I caught a whiff of a green, cinnamony (I know its not listed, but that's what I smell) patchouli smell, oh! This is quite nice! Back to the pile of unwanted samples, pulled it out and put it back on my shelf for further testing. I can make out patchouli pretty strongly here, but it strikes me a spring/summer patchouli. A bit lighter and fresher than many perfumes with a dominant patch note. I also get a bit of green at the top which blends into vetiver and powder/violet.

This strikes me as pretty good quality, good longevity and projection. Now I just need to find a way to make it past that banana opening.

May
24
2012
Aspendina
Aspendina

Falling hard for is, its only slightly green on me, I get quite a lot of powder but not baby powder, like powdery trees if that makes since. I am really loving this.

May
16
2012
kentabatinga
kentabatinga

Just got a free mini of this and it is real, real good. This is perfect for me and I am a male. It's unisex in my opinion. If you like a scent that is not "fresh" like thousands of scents out there, go for this. It stays on my skin and it is not overpowering at all. Not the greatest sillage, and that's why I like it. But you can reach for it in your arms for a good 5-8 hours. I like colognes that I feel good about it and I do not care to receive compliments on it like a lot of people expect when they wear a scent. Great Balenciaga.
Update: actually it is boring and not worth the price. I do not like the smell as I initially posted. I am just keeping it because it was free.

Apr
26
2012
lake
lake

I love the cleaness and freshness of that perfume, I was surprised to see that it does not contain ginger; it has the symphony of the woody, lemony, and spiciness that fresh ginger has; however ending with a warm note of softness to balance the crispness that would make it too evergreenish or medicinal.

Apr
19
2012
greydove
greydove

I really wanted to like this because I love "green", and I love violet, but this just smelled like salad with balsamic dressing on my skin. Then it dried down to aftershave. Dissapointing IMO.

Apr
03
2012
Radchick
Radchick

Very cool and green. It's like walking through a fragrant forest after a morning rain. I smell lots of green leaves and dewy freshness. There is a floral violet note in here that makes it feminine instead of just green. A very calming scent to me.

Apr
03
2012
MademoiselleMimi
MademoiselleMimi

Mmm, finally a GREEN perfume that I can really get behind! :) It's cedar, violet leaf, vetiver (I think?) + enough violet to soften and sweeten the experience. Definitely feminine, but also fanciful... makes me think of a woodland fairytale... like something the fairy princess from Lord of the Rings would wear! LoL I absolutely love green scents, and this is definitely a GREEN scent! The strong presence of violet is certainly important to note, however... this is not one of those masculine woodsy perfumes. But it is woodsy. If you don't want to smell woodsy, or be reminded of nature: steer clear of this one!

Mar
22
2012
aschiffm
aschiffm

WOWOWOWOWOWOW- BEAUTIFUL. I wasn't sure what to expect when it was advertised as "intimate" but now it is clear- it is a remarkable skin scent, it just radiates beautifully over your skin in a sort of creamy haze cloud of luscious earthy slightly sweet but green leaves and violet petals that just melt into your body. It is WARM. has the same texture as maybe honeysuckle, just remarkable. A tad powdery, but doesn't "scream" powder which is great, it's just soft. It is so modest but lovely and silently comfortable. I still get wafts of it rising up through the day, never overpowering, just completely aware, natural, and pleasant.

This subtle green creaminess always stays but starts to get a little more spicy and unisex which I absolutely love. this has my everyday signature scent written all over it. So pleased with this, the bottle expresses its quality perfectly, it is worth the big bucks for this unique scent. Bravo balenciaga! A fragrance out of the ordinary, a refreshing scent in all ways

Leafy, slightly minty, spicy, creamy and enchanting. I find myself wearing this most often during rainy weather and it's a beautiful compliment to that sort of day.

Mar
18
2012
wosic
wosic

OK, this is quick edit after wearing L'Essence for couple of days already. There was something that tickles me all the time. Something familiar but I couldn't put my finger on it. Until three hours ago - L'Essence to my nose is extremely close to Skin Trussardi. From the very beginning till the end. Sure, after certain moment I can see the similarities with Paris Balenciaga (I bought it, received it, compared it).

Mar
14
2012
wosic
wosic

I bought online Balenciaga Paris (which I like a lot) considering comming Spring but what I've got was Balenciaga L'Essence (never got a chance to test it before). That confusion irritates me for a while. Still, I've decided to give L'Essence a chance.
Oh, my sweet, sweet Faith! Thank you! This one is melty, creamy, kind a greenish liquid Heaven. On my skin it's not hardly discernible, nor a whisper of fragrance (for that, I'm grateful). This scent melts on skin softly embracing it. It's feminene and innocent. Not girlish. Not exactly fresh. Soft. And again, creamy.
L'Essence gives me the same feeling as Prada Infusion D'Iris but in a curvy way. While PID'I is kind a sharp and has a soapy edge, BL'E brings the "clean" sensation without being rough and "right in front of you" .This scent just floats on my skin.
PS: If the main note I'm detecting is violet leafs (according to Your Votes) so I finaly found the perfect non-watery-green violet leafs in a fragrance.
Bravo,M. Polge! Bravo!

Mar
13
2012
filleaplumes
filleaplumes

I wish I had more time with this one (made a quick whiff at the department store) but my initial feeling will probably remain regardless. To put it simply this fragrance lives up to its name of being "l'essence" of the original "Paris". Its its much lighter twin.. Its as though they turned down the knob on woody notes.. leaving crushed whole violets. It makes a great alternative if you want to tone it down for the warmer months. Not sure if I will purchase this anytime soon although if someone gave me an empty bottle I'd take it! So pretty!!

Mar
09
2012
FruitDiet
FruitDiet

My costliest perfume mistake. I bought it cause of the pretty bottle and cause I wanted to be like Nicolas Ghesquiere and Charlotte Gainsbourg. It didn't deliver on either of these fronts but gave me a harsh, condensed shower gel version of Grey Flannel. I tried in vain to convince myself that I was living the lifestyle presented in Balenciaga ads. I couldn't even recoup $40 of its $125 price on eBay. A dud by all standards.

Mar
08
2012
magda14012
magda14012

The more I test it the more I love it. Slowly discover its subtle beauty, that whispers in my ear softly and tenderly. I imagine going for a walk in the forrest, smelling divine green, fresh and clean air. The violets are creamy and in comparison to Paris this scent has much more weight and depth. A true beauty.

Mar
06
2012
anna.023
anna.023

How wierd that only one note is listed? This is a very sophisticated and beautiful scent, its a high class, smooth and rich perfume. To me its powdery and a slightley smokey violets. If you are a violet-lover, like me, this is a great perfume! I like the leather in this scent, it goes well with the heavy violet and gives it more deep. All though this perfume never gets too heavy, its rather rich and creamy, kind of smooth and strong in the same time. As I am obsessed by violets, I can tell that this is a great one, but I have to say that Insolence is still nr one for me. I think the original of this one will make a great everyday, but L'essence is not "everyday" and its not "party" either. For me this is not a very wearable scent, but still beautiful.

Feb
16
2012
Shemakk
Shemakk

It is so pairs..... Also smells like an expensive perfume. It is fresh and charming at the same time. They offcourse have experimented but the same time you will get balenciaga royal and special feel from it. Beautiful!

Jan
27
2012
AveParfum
AveParfum

The perfect Spring perfume. I love green perfumes, and this is one of the best I've smelled in quite some time. L'Essence has an aquatic vibe, yet it's not aquatic. I smell 100% pure, fragrant, freshly cut violet flowers and leaves. The soft powderiness of violet is perfectly balanced with the vibrant green leaves. What I love about l'Essence is that it gives the illusion of a citrus top-note, but I highly doubt there is any citrus in the perfume at all. It's a truly unique and remarkable fragrance. I would describe it as violet, woody, slightly powdery, aquatic, fresh, clean, bright, and green. Just gorgeous. The color and clarity of the bottle matches the scent of the juice perfectly.

I don't agree with this being masculine at all. I would consider it if I needed to replace my Mimosa perfume by Christiane Celle, another green floral for women. This totally lacks the spicy and intensely woody base notes of traditional masculine aquatics and/or colognes. I'm not saying men can't wear this (of course they can), but I think most men would find the powdery violet to be too feminine.

Jan
15
2012
nattonline
nattonline

I haven't spent much time with this yet but i really want to say that it smells as like a Dior Aqua Fahrenheit counterpart. Very heavy on violet leaf big time! It's cool watery green and earthy. It's also clean and dirty at the same time. Not at all "floral" scent in my vocabulary. Definitely leaning toward unisex scale. Guys should give this a try. I love my bottle, but I haven't been using it much because I don't wanna run out and it is very expensive.

Dec
24
2011
adel13
adel13

LOVE LOVE LOVE this on my skin heavenly

Dec
19
2011
Market ca
Market ca

Love the opening, it's just incredible, but it turns too mossy and too warm for me.

Nov
28
2011
lizainterpres
lizainterpres

Nice, androgynous, earthy...but it is a whisper of a fragrance. wouldn't buy it, too weak(((

Nov
26
2011
carinas
carinas

Loved the opening so much, that I almost bought it. However, after couple of minutes the great opening accord was gone and not much desirable left. After 20 min it started to turn little sour.
I consider it unisex, but not overly masculine. I think it could be great on somebody who has the right chemistry for it. Good for daytime.
Both, the bottle and the inside are superior to Paris.

Nov
11
2011
hugovdg
hugovdg

This charming perfume is reminiscent of 1988 Dior Fahrenheit -- for an obvious reason, I guess, -- even though it tells a different story as it unfolds. Just as Dior's, it is strongly masculine; I am surprised it is being marketed as 'for women'

Nov
06
2011
jonr951
jonr951

I finally got to try this today! It's very nice but it doesn't touch the original. Lovely bottle though. Why isn't the original in this green bottle? Ha! : )

Oct
28
2011
Kterhark
Kterhark

Balenciaga deserves a pat on the back for this one. Here is a mall counter scent with a marketing image of a young woman, at an affordable price. This is clearly a throw back to old school green chypres, and Bravo for that.

No fruit cakes and bubblegum, no celebrity air brushed faces, and no little girl pony tails. One can only hope it gets noticed.

The scent itself is middle of the road; neither outstanding nor flushable. It opens a bit screechy and takes its time finding its stride, but the resinous green vibe pulses throughout. What I like most is the earthy, almost gritty, resinous base notes. This indeed has a strong vetiver/cedar current, and I agree with the gents that this leans towards the masculine.

Oct
28
2011
ezdravkova
ezdravkova

antonpan, you have been reading my mind :)))
I recently named (entirely for my own purposes) this note "masculine jasmine" and I do indeed find it very very similar to the jasmine in Mon Jasmin Noir..

in comparison to Paris, L'Essence is less sparkly in the beginning (minus the carnation perheps??), but has more depth in the development.. still, not even a hint of "heavy" or "cloying" character..

Oct
21
2011
evilspin
evilspin

believe it or not, this fragrance works well on mens skin.

Oct
20
2011
athinaki
athinaki

Not bad at the beginning but somewhere in the middle and till the drydown it reminded of old Champagne by YSL.I'd say they are identical and as cloying.My friends thought the same,nice opening,dissappointing drydown.However,those who enjoyed Champagne,will love this,too.

Oct
16
2011
Mirjammm
Mirjammm

This scent is lovely. It does remind me a lot of Un jardin sur le Nil of Hermes.

Sep
27
2011
antonpan
antonpan

Strangely I do not hear much vetiver here. L'Essence is still last year's Paris (violets, violets), but, to my mind, it is enriched by a big dose of masculine... jasmine? I clearly feel the jasmine note here, similar to that in, for example, Bvlgari Mon Jasmine Noir. Anyway L'Essence is not as fresh as Paris and really has something animal or masculine inside.

Sep
15
2011
teaweed
teaweed

Description of notes in advert from Sept. 2011 ELLE Magazine:

"A green violet-leaf fragrance deepened with a chypre accord of cedar, vetiver, black pepper and pimento berries."

Sep
14
2011
browneyes55
browneyes55

masculine and feminine equally. i wish they listed the rest of the notes because violet leaf alone is not this fragrance at all. its comforting and suave along the same lives as bvlgari's soir and a much classier simplified burberry touch. that type feel to it. It is very good and luxurious. But you know unisex scents hardly ever have that hook that gets you addicted and its true here. on the dry down it has something that reminds me of Balmian's Ambergris too which does become a bit of an addictive quality.

Sep
13
2011
ednafrau
ednafrau

I simply cannot wait to try L'Essence...Balenciaga Paris has become one of my favorite perfumes of all, so i have great expectations :) Will update with a review when - and if - my friend who is travelling to France gets it for me! P.S. The nose/creator of this fragrance is Olivier Polge.

Sep
12
2011
belladonna'sbliss
belladonna'sbliss

"A green fragrance laced with violet leaves and vetiver." States Balenciaga's creative director Nicolas Ghesquiere in Septembers Vouge. He Goes on to describe how his muse the complex Chorlotte Gainsbourg toys with "notions of masculinity and femininity". his use of Vetiver "a hallmark of mens cologne" helps to bring this trait forward. "Poisonous and Magnetic" is how he sums up L'Essence.
The bottle was made to fit in with the Hematite and pyrite jewelry in balenciaga's resort collection.
I can't wait to do a full review of this fragrance I have been wanting to find a fresh vetiver fragrance and violet leaf is one of my favorite notes.
(edit)
Well after trying this one, it is very sweet with a strong watery green note on my skin. Not at all the masculine edge I was hoping for. Like some one screams Waterlily's!!! then cannonballs into the pond splashing a Monet like canvas in everyone's face. Too much Violet leaf and sweet florals equals too much a of a good thing. Unbalanced compared to Paris.

Sep
07
2011
lhollingdrake
lhollingdrake

Balenciaga Paris disappointed me. Essence is what I dreamed Paris would be. I think I have finally found my signature scent.

Aug
21
2011
Fragboy80
Fragboy80

I adore this one even more than Balenciaga Paris. L'Essence is also a shared scent. So a full mens fragrance is definately on its way I can feeel it. can't wait for this to hit the stores..and I love the bottle..even more beautiful than Balenciaga Paris.

Jul
30
2011
jonr951
jonr951

Balenciaga Paris is a gem so I can only imagine how wonderful L'Essence is going to be. This is going to be such a great year for fragrance. I am loving the green! I can't wait to read a full list of notes and the official launch date. Thanks again fragrantica! : )

Jun
23
2011

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