I received Opulent Oud a few days ago, along with Solitaire Eau de Parfum
and Shuhrah pour Femme
. Let’s say that Opulent Red
initially attracted me. Its lacquered red bottle immediately caught my attention. However, its presumed resemblance to the Armani Privé - Rouge Malachite
that I own made me desist from buying it, and my choice moved to the black lacquered bottle of Opulent Oud.
And since this dark and mystical fragrance arrived on time, I’m pretty sure I’ll be wearing it tonight on Christmas Eve. In my family of origin, we have always celebrated Christmas lunch. But for the past few years, I’ve been joining friends to celebrate Christmas Eve dinner. What better occasion to unleash Opulent Oud? Its spicy warm character, enveloping like a fine wool sweater and at the same time resinous as dark as a black cloak, perfectly suits such an important and intimate dinner.
The opening is spicy and sharp, in the customary oriental way for fragrances featuring saffron and warm spice. A rounded rosy background already lingers, but I mainly receive leathery saffron with a plastic edge, band-aid-like, and sweet and pungent cinnamon. Hidden into that riot of spices, there is a feeble shade of citrus, probably bergamot and orange oil. I won’t exclude a floral touch of white jasmine, the nightly blooming species. Since coarse saffron is my jam, I like how Opulent Oud introduces itself. It’s a bold, arrogant, self-centred entrance that wants to get noticed.
When the spicy blast tones down, a blend of jammy rose, and barnyard oud wood takes place. The Opulent name Oud is there for a reason. The oud is not clean or refined; it is dense, dark, syrupy, and nearly obnoxious. The medicinal side of oud sap must be of your own liking to truly appreciate this beast. The fragrance is designed and built for the Arab people. It is not a tailored suit for the European, international, or non-UAE crowd. It unleashes the strength and power of the oud, indomitable, uncontainable. If you pay close attention, you’ll pick up a powdery slant in the middle phase, possibly from an iris or purple hue that adds dustiness to the edgy aspects of the resinous fluid. Now and then, I seem to catch the syrupy smell of the dried fruits.
The dry-down is where Opulent Oud takes a smoky turn. Now the sap of the oud comes into play; the skanky part blends with the woodiness of the cedar. Smoke is on par with what incense resin emits when burned. It is a rich, dry, smoky incense without that clerical aspect. A copious amount of juicy resin and amber binds the smoky and dry accords, adding a touch of sweet saltiness. The base also offers an earthy side with a patchouli undertone, which gives extra depth without making the fragrance too dirty. Although there are all these elements in the base, the precious and wonderful incense stands out above all on my skin.
Opulent Oud is a resinous rose-oud pair in the Middle East style fragrance, with hints of saffron, amber, and musk. It is good for the colder months and more appropriate for evening and night events. For €26, this is another beast performer with a unique scent and great projection, which can be exchanged for a more expensive niche scent. It projects gracefully for the first couple of hours, then sits close to the skin, and I keep a small bubble around me for a while, but it lasts forever. All the people that hugged me asked about what perfume I was wearing. And you, how did you spend Christmas Eve?
I'm basing my impressions and review on a bottle I've owned since December 2022.