Thursday, 17 November 2011

Serge Lutens Iris Silver Mist

Iris Silver Mist is another one of those exclusive, non-export Lutens perfumes one always reads about. It has gained almost mythical status in perfume and I had been longing to try it for a number of years.

The notes include iris, clover, cedar, sandalwood, vetiver, white amber, benzoin, labdanum, musks and incense. What strikes me about Iris Silver Mist is how un-Lutens like it is. If you are expecting a rich, oriental spice fest (not that you would with iris I would guess) you would be mistaken. That's not to say it isn't surprising. It opens with a raw, vegetal, rooty, carrot-like odour that is quite unusual. At one point (and bear in mind I am dabbing, not spraying) it smells like vodka, or at least some raw spirit distilled from potatoes or another root vegetable. 

After the strong opening Iris Silver Mist softens considerably. It isn't powdery exactly, but it does become soft, silky, almost like a sheer veil scented with violets and powder. There are a lot of notes listed that I don't readily identify, but I don't want to over-complicate it. Essentially Iris Silver Mist is a compelling Iris perfume that certainly stands out.

Is it one of my favourite Lutens? No, not really. I like it, but don't feel like I'm falling in love. I'd happily wear it, but I do prefer others in the line, but I do know that it has its acolytes, and rightly so. I do like encountering Lutens perfumes that avoid what has become known, somewhat cliched now, as that Lutens oriental accord. Like Tubereuse Criminelle for example, it really pushes the boat out by taking a note and presenting it in a way I haven't smelled before. 


  1. I love this one. I like "weird" scents and this is definitely weird. But a few days ago I found its perfect use. I had a terrible headache since noon and I had to go out in the evening. I chose ISM and its detached coolness was really comforting and soothing. Like cool velvet

  2. Memory of Scent, thanks for commenting. I agree, it is a very cool fragrance. I find a lot of iris scents evoke that feeling for me, as does violet. By the way I liked your thoughts on Tubereuse Criminellea, and agree that it is eminently suitable for a man to wear. I also think L'Artisan's Nuit de Tuberose fits the bill.

  3. Iris Silver Mist is probably the only SL's perfume which I want to try "by name" (meaning - I know the name and would actively seek it to test; all the rest, which I haven't tried yet, I wouldn't mind trying but only if I came across them).

    I wanted to mention that most vodkas are produced from grains (though I'm not sure if it smells differently since I do not drink vodka).

  4. Undina, I'm a Lutens fan, so I don't need any encouragement to try!

    I'm not a huge fan or connoissseur of vodka, so I'm definitely not an expert.



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