Patchouli stir up emotions. It´s a note that many people having trouble with in perfumes, maybe because patchouli is associated with hippies, cheap indian perfume oils and headshops. Honestly I don´t really know what a headshop is, but it´s a place often mentioned in international perfume reviews when patchouli is on the agenda. A ptachouli that smells headshop is bad, and if the patchouli don´t it´s better.
I usually likes patchouli. If I don´t like a perfume, there isn´t because of the patchouli, on the contrary patchouli often fascinate me. But theres no doubt about that there is a lot of different patchoulis. Thierry Mugler´s Angel is a well-known patchouli bomb and I like Angel, but I like Angel´s shyer, softer and more watery flanker Eau de Star even better. A perfect summer fragrance I think. Almost as easy as an cologne and still oriental, a very nice combination in my opinion even tough I seldom like aquatic perfumes. With Angel you sedate and hypnotise you´re surruondings, with Eau de Star you got all the compliments.
Another favourite with patchouli is Serge Luten´s Borneo 1834, I´ve already written about it, but in my opinion a dark, orientalic and heavy perfume at it´s best.
An light-weighter in patchouli is Parfumerie General´s Intrigant Patchouli, with a patchouli as soft and tender as in Eau de Star. A good introduction if you´re unsure about patchouli note. Intrigant Patchouli is actaully so softspoken and intriguing that I at first didn´t realised how much I liked it, but now it´s on my top five-list of fragrances from Parfumerie General, and thats good, since I have a big weak spot for fragrances from PG.
Patchouli is terrific to blend with some sweetness and gourmand-notes, and that is what Il Profvmo do in Chocolat. At first it´s a good, dark chocolate fragrance, but after a while the chocolate gradually changes to patchouli, and I like it. Here patchouli mingle with soft, creamy sweetness and aromatic vanilla, the chocolate is still there but in the shadow of other notes.
A harsh, dry and dark patchouli I find in Histoire de Parfums Noir Patchouli. I´ve got a feeling of bunches of patchouli left to dry in a warm and dark place. This isn´t a pleasing patchouli, and maybe nothing to start with if you´re having problems with patchouli. But on the other hand Patchouli Noir never get´s sticky or strong.
Do you have any patchouli smelling favourites? Or only cathastropies? I do like patchouli that much that I have start to wonder about growing it in a pot in my garden. It will survive if I take it in during winter and have it in a sunny and sheltered part of the garden. But it dosn´t seem so easy to find patchouli plants or seed in Sweden. If you´re having any tips on how to get some patchouli, please let me know, I have heard that the plant smells wonderful.