Perfume Pen Pals: Frederic Malle Une Rose (Part Deux)


I have a confession. I pulled the Une Rose trigger about 3 weeks ago, and have been bursting to tell you about it. Because it felt so momentous to me, I didn't want to just do a quick telegram mention ("BOUGHT UNE ROSE STOP SMELLS GREAT STOP"), and I was too busy with work to pen a proper “new baby” announcement.

But I adore my Une Rose! I'm devoted to it! I only want to wear Une Rose! Get to the back of the queue, Chanel Coromandel, Miller Harris Fleur Oriental, and yes, you too, Homage Attar! Une Rose is officially my new perfume blankie.

Here's how it went down: by the time I'd drained my second sample of Une Rose, I started tweakin' for a full bottle. Agent Provocateur and People of the Labyrinths A*MAZE tried their best to talk me down, but only Une Rose would soothe my perfumium tremens.

And so there I was, back at Barney's for another shot at love. By now I was keyed up to a bizarre intensity for someone merely buying a perfume, and ended up babbling to Malle-girl Margaret about my whole Une Rose journey -- from first finding it insanely anvil-like in its rose-ness, to realizing I was woman enough to take this thing on.

Margaret was very emphatic that Une Rose is "not a rose perfume. It's a truffle perfume with rose. It's all base. And it's a pure parfum. 25% perfume oil. The only other parfum in the line is Carnal Flower."

She went on to say that the whole point of Une Rose is its fullness and intensity, so only a parfum concentration would do it justice.

Une Rose is FANTASTIC on my skin, and my very favorite thing about it is the drydown, which is an earthy, salty amber. No piss whatsoever!

Boy, is that ever tough for you, Dan, because Une Rose is so grand -- no, grande -- and lush, and pleasure giving. Sadly for you, it's only pee-pee giving. Which stinks.



Well, isn't that a kick? I know what you mean about Une Rose. Because I can smell it all, at least for a couple hours. But then all of the rich truffle and earth and rose slide away and I'm left with an increasingly strong sense of distress.

According to Luca Turin, Une Rose employs Karanal, a molecule that smells of amber to most people. But to a small subset, it smells of urine. And its smell gets stronger over time. So I'm one of the lucky few because in Une Rose, I smelled piss. And only piss. What an odd thing.

And I think it's more truffle and base because of Edouard Fl├ęchier, who has never been interested in roses -- and Une Rose was his very first perfume with rose in it. And now he's supposedly retired. So I guess it'll be his last.

I'm gifting you my remaining 9ml of U(ri)ne Rose. I feel like a deep-sea diver who is heroically giving up his oxygen tank for you. Because oxygen smells like piss to me.


Read Une Rose part one here


  1. love this.

    made my morning.

  2. Happy for your purchase, Katie, and sorry to find myself in the same small, piss-smelling subset as Dan. So that is amber, then - not civet, my usual urinous nemesis?

    Love the coining of "perfumium tremens"!

  3. It sounds like you can add another nemesis to your cast of mortal olfactory enemies, flittersniffer.

    I love "perfumium tremens", too, but fear that I can't take credit for the coinage. Perhaps it was already living in my head, but commenter "Joe" on NowSmellThis got in the first published mention of it here: