Lilacs Abloom

It’s that time of year again: the lilacs are blooming.

I want to go live HERE, in the middle of these lilac bushes...
I want to go live HERE, in the middle of these lilac bushes…

There is just something about the smell of lilacs – sweet, floral, greenish, spicy, and innocent – that I adore. It’s a very youthful smell, I think, a very springlike one.

I waxed rhapsodic about lilacs in this post a few years ago, listing all the lilac scents I knew of.

I now have, thanks to a kind friend, a small amount, a few milliliters, of Patou Vacances, of which I previously only had a tiny sample.  It is oh so beautiful. The perfect lilac+greenery scent.

Today I’m wearing my DSH Perfumes White Lilac (sorry to say, this one has been discontinued and is no longer available). It is lovely and innocent, sweet and spicy.

Do you love lilacs? Have a favorite lilac scent? Do share, please.



24 thoughts on “Lilacs Abloom”

  1. We had a lilac bush right outside our screen porch growing up. So wonderful! I loved it.

    My favorite lilac so far is Lilas et Narcisse. Last holiday season, Soivohle was clearancing (discontinuing?) out all of their EDTs and I bought two 15 mL EDT splashes unsniffed. I know, I know. I actually bought the two I bought in part because of reviews from you, Mals! Our tastes diverge a bit but there’s enough similarity in what we like that I felt pretty confident.

    I really, really like Lilas et Narcisse – it’s got enough spiciness to keep it interesting to me. It’s like liquid spring. My only complaint is that on the drydown it gets a little too vanilla-sweet for my taste.

    Reading your older post, I’m really curious to try Coty Paris now. And Vacances. And the DSH lilacs. Although things come in and out of her catalog so quickly…

    1. I can’t quite remember why I didn’t like Lilas et Narcisse. Just… didn’t.

      Vacances is so gorgeous. I strongly advise you not to break your own heart with it, because it is completely unfindable. GRRRR.

        1. I thought it was okay. I liked Lilacs & Heliotrope much better, actually. Rosa sur Reuse is awesome, though! ARe you liking it?

  2. I do love lilacs. Miss them out here on the west coast as they don’t really grow out here. Our house has 1 small bush in front that is a variety that does grow in our climate, but it is pretty sad so far – just one bloom. I do enjoy sniffing it though!

    Lilacs in scents often comes across as air freshener to me (same problem many have with LotV), but I enjoyed En Passant. I think that’s just about the only one I’ve smelled other than soliflore types like Crabtree & Evelyn. After My Own Heart was a bit soapy on my and I am no fan of soap in scents.

    1. Well, your bush will grow, I’m assuming… And yeah, I often get air freshener out of lilac scents. Soapy is also a big no for me.

      En Passant is really lovely – I just wish it lasted longer. It’s too fleeting to spend $325 for a bottle of “fleeting.”

  3. I just picked some lilacs and lilies-of-the-valley to put on my table! Like five minutes ago! I remember some dimestore/drugstore lilac splash from my teen years. These days, not being a über-floral type, all I can think of is Guerlain Champs-Elysées, which I find to have a springtime floral element that includes lilac. Though no-one lists it, I detect something like lilac in Oscar de la Renta Volupté, another green floral you may like to know, especially for late spring/early summer.

    1. Enjoy those blooms!!

      I think I’ve only smelled Champs-Elysees once, and did not enjoy it. Volupte I have a vague memory of the bottle… sort of a lumpy little thing, green top? Don’t remember the scent, though. Might if I smelled it.

      (Edit: just went and looked it up on FRagrantica, and it’s a Sophia Grojsman. I do well with her stuff, in general.)

  4. Oh, I, too love the smell of lilacs, and we had several bushes surrounding our country home growing up. Honestly, I’ve never tried to duplicate that smell in a perfume as it doesn’t seem something I would enjoy on my body. Lilacs, to me, are meant to be experienced outdoors in their natural state…of course, that theory topples like twigs when other flowers are involved, like rose and iris. And you have intrigued me with Patou Vacances.

    1. OH, no. I’m going to stop mentioning Vacances. It’s gone, it’s SO gone. It has gone the way of the dodo. Srsly. Everybody is going to go looking for it and hating me because it is SO SO gone. (If you find a bottle, it’ll be priced deep into triple digits, because it’s so rare. It was findable and expensive two years ago, but now it’s not even findable. GRRRRRR.) I only have a bit that a friend sent me from her precious hoard, and I really treasure it.

      But if you find it, please tell me. 🙂

      I would like to smell like lilacs, but then I am very comfortable in florals!

  5. Lilacs are my very favorite natural fragrance and spring flower, but lilac perfumes do not work on me. So like Josephine above, I’ve come to the conclusion that I just don’t want to smell like one. But oh, to gather up and breathe in deeply the fragrance of a fresh lilac bouquet. One of life’s pleasures. Happy spring C! XO

  6. Oh, how I love lilacs! They grew like well in the Pacific NW where I grew up (and if any of you get a chance to visit the Hulda Klager Lilac Gardens – in Washington state about 1/2 hour from Portland, OR – they are heaven during lilac season. This link will give you an idea: )

    Favorite lilac scents are Ineke’s After My Own Heart and Pacifica’s French Lilac. Liz Zorn’s Lilac and Heliotrope was a beauty except when sprayed on me. 🙁

    1. Oh dear. I liked L&H, not L&Roses and didn’t really fall for Lilas et Narcisse. Oh well – I didn’t get on with AMOH at all – there was something chemical in there that really bugged me. Couldn’t identify it.

      I’m sure those Lilac Gardens are amazing! I’d love to visit…

  7. I remember thinking of ElizabethW Lilac as startlingly realistic, but I see from your past post that you weren’t a fan. I don’t think that I’ve ever smelled your favorites; I’ll have to send off for some.

    I also really need to go out to the side yard and sniff the lilacs. Assuming they’re not over. I’m ignoring all the flowers this year, and I don’t know why.

    1. ACK, ignoring the flowers???

      Well, if you’re doing something else good you have an excuse. If you’re not feeling quite the thing, I’m sad for you.

      I didn’t love the ElizW, no.

  8. Love lilacs, but never found a version of them I could wear, not even the lost Vacances. But sometimes I think I should troll Ebay for Mary Chess White Lilac, which was supposed to be fantastic. Will share if I find any.

    1. Have heard good things about that Mary Chess.

      I am aghast that even Vacances did not work for you… so sad so sad.

  9. Adore lilac but here in Sydney rarely get to enjoy it and am a tuberose fan to boot. The chill is descending on us these days and yesterday I noticed the daphne bush hiding in the shade of the crab-apple was in bud. Daphne is the only good thing about the cold and its season is so fleeting. I’ve been searching or years for a fragrance that offers daphne’s special lift throughout the year. When I discovered your blog yesterday I was entranced and hopeful …. is there any chance you know of a fragrance that will feed my daphne obsession??? And I do wish I’d found your blog earlier. I too was seduced by Amouge’s Honour on first contact and bought it then and there despite its extraordinary price. I never ever buy fragrance without testing for hours on skin but this one did seem perfect for day wear in the warmth and I’m addicted to H’omage for evenings.

    1. Welcome, Zita!! Always nice to be joined by an Aussie.

      You’re not the only person to be enchanted by the scent of daphne blooms, but as far as I know there aren’t any fragrances that capture it.

      Honour was so great at first, and then (at least on my skin) so… weird… that I felt completely cheated. If it had been weird from the beginning it wouldn’t have mattered so much. And it took me probably a dozen wearings to fall for Memoir Woman, because it is so unusual, but I love the stuff now. Lyric Woman, however, I loved right from the beginning. When those Amouages are right, they are really really right.

  10. I love lilac bushes, just love ’em. There’s a massive lilac just outside my kitchen window that’s getting ready to bloom soon. Seven years ago it was in flower when we walked through this house the first time, and I’m sure it’s half the reason we bought this place. 😉

    Favorite lilacs are En Passant and AMOH, with AMOH being my very first niche purchase, so it has a special place in my heart. Soivohle’s Lilacs and Heliotrope is on my wishlist.

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