Hermes 24 Faubourg : Perfume Review

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Star rating: 5 stars–outstanding/potential classic, 4 stars–very good, 3 stars–adequate, 2 stars–disappointing, 1 star–poor.

Named after the address of the Hermès flagship store in Paris, 24, Faubourg immediately conjures an image of luxury, supple leather and expensive scarves. Although the excess of good taste can be just as unfortunate as its dearth, 24, Faubourg avoids the clichés, toning down the decadent richness of florals with the dryness of patchouli. The sensual ambery radiance that pervades many of Maurice Roucel’s fragrances is evident in 24, Faubourg. Created just a year after the jewel-toned Tocade (1994) and two years before the chilly Gucci Envy (1997), 24, Faubourg is a beautiful compromise between the red lipsticked glamour of the former and the aloof stance of the latter. …

The indolic confection of orange blossom, ylang ylang and jasmine is wrapped into the winey layer of amber and suspended over the subtly orchestrated chypre accord. The woody floral notes of iris and the earthiness of vetiver provide a beautiful counterpoint to the unabashed opulence of white flowers blooming in the heart of 24, Faubourg.

The polished beauty of the composition has a classically graceful aura, and yet, I do not feel that 24, Faubourg dictates a situation that would be suitable for it. It works just as well when my outfit consists of a simple t-shirt and jeans as when I am wearing an evening gown. In my case, the versatile quality of 24, Faubourg is a blessing, particularly since the occasions for fancy gowns do not arise frequently these days.

24, Faubourg includes notes of orange blossom, jasmine sambac, iris, ambergris, vanilla. Hermès fragrances, including 24, Faubourg are available directly from the website, Hermès boutiques as well as select retailers such as Neiman Marcus.

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23 Comments

  • Marina: This is one of those perfumes that I truly admire, but only theoretically. If I put 24, Faubourg on, I don’t wear it, it wears me 🙂 But I do really like it. I remember seeing the ads in Vogue and such several years ago and the tagline was something like: “The sun shines inside you”, or something along those lines. And, to me, this scent is really full of warm sunlight, as if illuminated from within. Thank you for the lovely review! March 31, 2006 at 8:45am Reply

  • Judith: Back in the day when I only had a few perfumes (those were the days, my friend!), this was one of my “signatures.” I probably wore it too much, because I haven’t been feeling like it recently. But it is a beautiful composition. Unlike you, however, I felt comfortable in it mostly when I was dressed up and going out–but it always made me feel special then, and it almost always garnered compliments from men.
    P.S. Wearing My Sin today–it is amazing! MWAH! March 31, 2006 at 8:48am Reply

  • Laura: I almost like this, but there is a sourish, stale discord that really comes out in the drydown, at least on my skin. The bottle is gorgeous, though. March 31, 2006 at 9:25am Reply

  • marchlion: V, you rock my world. This is maybe the one Hermes I can’t appreciate. And now you’ve made it clear why I need to get back in there and try again! March 31, 2006 at 9:29am Reply

  • violetnoir: I agree with March. I love many of the other Hermes fragrances (Caleche and Hiris come to mind immediately), but I never liked 24, Faubourg. Now I am thinking I need to dig up my sample…

    Hugs! March 31, 2006 at 12:29pm Reply

  • BoisdeJasmin: M, I have never seen it, but what a perfect description! It is wonderfully radiant. I have to say that I did not like 24, Faubourg the first time I tried it. I expected an orange blossom, but it turned out more chypre than floral, a tad musty and dry. However, this dryness now seems like the very thing that makes it work for me. Otherwise, it would be too rich and too luxurious. Sometimes, it is a good thing, and sometimes, it is not. March 31, 2006 at 1:58pm Reply

  • BoisdeJasmin: Judith, isn’t My Sin gorgeous? I count it as one of my favourite vintage acquisitions.

    I know what you mean about tiring of something you wore for a prolonged period of time. For instance, I used to like many L’Artisan fragrances, but when I decided to revisit them today, I am no longer feeling the same enjoyment. March 31, 2006 at 3:34pm Reply

  • BoisdeJasmin: L, I can see that, although to me, it translates more like a bit of darkness dimming the brightness of flowers. The bottle is stunning. I also love the limited editions printed with the select scarf patterns. March 31, 2006 at 3:36pm Reply

  • BoisdeJasmin: March, I hope to hear the results of that mission! 🙂 March 31, 2006 at 3:37pm Reply

  • BoisdeJasmin: R, Caleche must be my favourite feminine from Hermes, and while I liked Hiris for a period of time, I can no longer wear it. I also like Amazone, although it is definitely a child of its time. March 31, 2006 at 3:45pm Reply

  • Katie: Like Laura, I too find something sourish on my skin on the drydown. It’s one of those scents I can appreciate as beautiful, but I simply cannot like it. I wish I could! It seems so sparkling on other people! March 31, 2006 at 4:18pm Reply

  • BoisdeJasmin: Katie, I remember smelling it on my friend, and it suited her perfectly. “It’s one of those scents I can appreciate as beautiful, but I simply cannot like it.” You put it really well. I have a number of fragrances that fall under this category. Caron Acaciosa comes to mind. March 31, 2006 at 4:30pm Reply

  • Robin: A beautiful fragrance and a beautiful review. Like Judith, it feels like a dress up scent to me, hence, I almost never wear it. March 31, 2006 at 6:15pm Reply

  • marchlion: V, late at night, returning home after hitting the mall. I tried on a number of things, including the 24 … I am stressed, and I know when I am stressed, my sampling goes wildly out of control! Anyway, it is a strong chypre on me, with barely a hint of the floral aspect. I was, um, not enthralled initially, but it was beautiful by any reasonable measure. The interesting part: half an hour later, when I get to the point that many of the mainstream scents nowadays start to smell a little weak and/or insipid, I would go back and sniff the 24. It is a fully adult, complex perfume on a radically higher plane than any of the other eight or nine (!) things I had on from Sephora, all of which just paled in comparison. It is now hours later, the others have fled, and the 24 is still there, carrying it seems to me just a suggestion of resin-spiciness (one of my favorite smells) in the heart of the chypre. I have difficulty with chypres if they are very green, but this is stunning. I can’t think of a better way to express this: 24 is COMPLETE, it is missing nothing, it…. it has a start and a finish, like a perfect piece of music. (Something for the piano?). It unfolds at its own pace. I don’t think I gave it a chance before, not really, I was seduced by the easier charms of Hiris and Sur Le Nil (which are of course beautiful in their own right). This one is simply more difficult for me to hear. Am not sure if that makes sense or if I sound nuts, sorry for the long post! Have a good weekend. March 31, 2006 at 9:24pm Reply

  • BoisdeJasmin: R, you are right about the fact that 24, Faubourg is a glamorous fragrance. I think that the reason I treat it as versatile is because it makes me feel elegant, nomatter what I wear. Now, sometimes one simply needs an illusion. 🙂 April 1, 2006 at 3:51pm Reply

  • BoisdeJasmin: March, I understand really well what you are trying to say. It is a very polished composition, with all of its elements harmonious and perfectly arranged. I love all of its stages, but the drydown is simply stunning. I am very pleased that I inspired you to revisit it. Any further impressions? April 1, 2006 at 3:55pm Reply

  • marchlion: I could still smell it this morning. I think the drydown is my favorite part, the leather comes on a little stronger and the whole thing takes on that resin-incense aspect that I find enormously appealing in a fragrance. April 1, 2006 at 9:04pm Reply

  • BoisdeJasmin: The drydown does have the resinous quality, and I find it very appealing as well. The ambergris note is beautiful. April 2, 2006 at 1:44pm Reply

  • Ana: A great review. 24 has a transparency to it, somehow coexisting with a golden richness. It doesn’t ‘shout’. I love wearing it in cold weather as there is a glow about it. September 1, 2006 at 4:24pm Reply

  • bee: I was given a 100ML bottle, and I used it all, to clean the toilet seat with! One of those scents I cannot tolerate anywhere else! Strangely enough, a friend of mine told me she does the same to the scents she does not like!! August 22, 2011 at 7:05am Reply

  • OperaFan: Wearing the perfume today – immediately got the co-worker’s attention. So elegant!
    a:) May 17, 2012 at 12:06pm Reply

    • Victoria: It is! I love how orange blossom melts into that rich amber as 24 Faubourg dries down… May 17, 2012 at 12:53pm Reply

  • Oakmoss Changeling: Victoria, can you comment as to whether there’s been any significant reformulations to 24 Faubourg, and if so, how damaging have they been to the fragrance?

    I’ve been testing a sample from the 90’s version of the perfume and am wondering whether I should track down a vintage bottle or if a current bottle would suffice.

    Thank you so much the beautiful review and any insight you might have into any reformulation! May 13, 2014 at 7:16pm Reply

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