Burberry Brit Rhythm for Women : Perfume Review

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Burberry has done all it could to sink Brit Rhythm for Women. The awkward name, the cliched marketing lingo of sexy, rock-n-roll, and edgy, and its place of honor as the nth flanker to Brit don’t inspire much excitement. This is a shame, because Brit Rhythm is a sophisticated, quirky lavender wrapped in peony and sheer amber. It’s the most interesting and distinctive fragrance in Burberry’s collection, although you’d never guess so based on its bland trappings.

Burberry brit

If your idea of elegance is casual and understated, Brit Rhythm will be a good fit. At its core is a complex lavender accord, a brave choice for a feminine perfume. A common presence in masculine colognes and skin care products, lavender has acquired a staid and dull reputation. That lavandin, a harsher, brasher note, is often used instead of real lavender doesn’t help matters either.

By contrast, high-quality lavender, which need not even be that expensive, is a revelation. It’s a suave and lush material offering an exciting range of green, sweet and floral notes. This is exactly the type of lavender used in Brit Rhythm. Perfumers Nathalie Gracia-Cetto and Antoine Maisondieu have interpreted it as floral and ambery, cleverly blending the accords to extend the natural facets of the raw material into an abstract, soft focus composition.

The first stage of Brit Rhythm is sparkling and fresh, with a hint of green violet and lavender tea. Tangy orange blossom gives the perfume a springlike freshness, which is later echoed by the crisp woods. After an hour or so, it’s all about petals. The splashes of floral notes are generous, and the sheer peony is the main, lingering accent. The drydown of amber and woods, so dry and crisp that you can almost feel their texture on your skin, unfolds slowly. Lavender makes a final appearance here as well.

While lavender anchors Brit Rhythm, it won’t appear as obvious as lavender in Caron Pour un HommeHermès Brin de Reglisse or even Sarah Jessica Parker Covet. Bright and energizing, lavender adds to Brit’s charm, but as in the similarly themed Chanel Jersey, it still remains subtle. In terms of sophisticated character (not necessarily the scent), it makes me think of Love Chloé, another fragrance by Nathalie Gracia-Cetto.

It’s the effect overall that makes Brit Rhythm stand out. It’s transparent and radiant, with three distinct stages–fresh herbs and flowers, soft petals and dry woods.  It has a wonderful, uplifting presence and a delicate but clear character. In other words, Brit Rhythm is emphatically not a “rave party” fragrance of Burberry copy, but a chic, polished blend. The mismatch is probably why Brit Rhythm won’t survive for much longer on the market, so while it’s still around, it’s worth trying it.

Burberry Brit Rhythm for Her includes notes of lavender, pink pepper, neroli, orris absolute, blackberry leaves, orange blossom, peony, vetiver, musk, and wood. It is available as 30  ml, 50ml ($70) and 90ml ($90) Eau de Toilette. Sold at major department stores.

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75 Comments

  • Edward: Hi Victoria,

    I hope all is well on your end! I am not really into any of the Burberry fragrances but reading your review makes me want to try this. I love elegance, especially casual and understated! I hope it is something men can pull-off! But whatever, I would love to smell this and hope it is something I can use in the office. The good news for me is that this is not niche so I am sure I can easily find this in major department stores. Have a great day ahead!

    Cheers,
    Edward January 12, 2015 at 8:02am Reply

    • Victoria: I’d guess that it might be too floral for most men, but it depends on what you’re used to. As you say, at least it’s easy to find a tester. January 12, 2015 at 9:00am Reply

      • Amer: I just managed to try this today. Burberry is a brand I usually don’t bother checking and I would have dismissed this too if it wasn’t for your glowing review. Their line with the countless flankers and the similar bottles is a source for frustration for me. Well, you proved me wrong. It really took some effort to spot it in the brit chaos but the fragrance is definitely worth the trouble. I love the powdery rendition of the lavender in this and how fresh and crystalline it is made here. The green sparkles are a welcome addition. The transition from top to bottom is very suave and the powdery finish manages to stay fresh and modern. My only qualm is that projection seems a bit week for me and I would like the drydown a bit more faceted. Still, a very nice composition through and through. I don’t think it takes a brave man to wear this because: a)the bottle is identical to the masculine version and b) I gave a paper strip to two male, non perfume-holic friends to smell without telling them what it was and they both liked it and seemed genuinely interested in it. January 17, 2015 at 6:52pm Reply

        • Victoria: I like your description, Amer!
          I sprayed it on my husband, and it really smelled great on him. He didn’t find that floral either, and in fact, until I told him that it was marketed to women, he didn’t suspect it. January 19, 2015 at 5:31am Reply

          • Amer: I see they already announced their next flanker. Your suspicions seem well founded January 19, 2015 at 3:58pm Reply

            • Victoria: Yikes! Already???! January 20, 2015 at 2:18am Reply

              • Amer: taken from Fragrantica
                “Burberry introduced the fragrant pair inspired by the British rock scene; Brit Rhythm for Him was launched first in September 2013, followed by the feminine edition Brit Rhythm for Her in 2014. In February 2015, new flankers of the fragrances are coming out—Brit Rhythm for Him Intense and Brit Rhythm for Her Floral.”

                “a sensual floral composition enriched with citrus fruit. It opens with fresh accords of lemon from Sicily and orange. The heart notes are floral tones of Egyptian jasmine, lotus and lilac. Woods, amber and musk end the composition. The fragrance is available as 90 ml Eau de Toilette.”

                read’em and weep 😮 January 20, 2015 at 11:47am Reply

              • Amer: to make matters worse, the bottle and colour of the juice are exactly the same! How low can they sink? January 20, 2015 at 11:48am Reply

                • Victoria: I just checked, and they’re hardly distinguishable. What a pity it all had to end so quickly. January 21, 2015 at 8:09am Reply

  • Miruna: Thank you for this review, I was curious about this one, but always forgot to test it, because I`m used to avoid the Burberry counters. The only Burberry I liked enough to wear was Brit Red, and that one only around winter holidays.
    My favourite lavender perfumes are Pour un Homme and Le 3e Homme. I have found SJP Lovely to be a pretty lavender – I avoided it for years because of its supposed similarity to NR For Her which I already owned, but I find it quite different due to the lavender and apple notes. January 12, 2015 at 8:47am Reply

    • Victoria: SJP Lovely is much softer than NR for Her and it doesn’t have the sharp opening that some people likened to the nail polish remover. I like it very much.

      I also like Serge Lutens Gris Clair for a musky lavender. January 12, 2015 at 9:01am Reply

      • annemarie: Interesting. I recently sold my NR 4 Her EDT, with no regrets, but I would not dream of parting with Lovely. The lavender is so graceful and airy. January 13, 2015 at 5:36am Reply

        • Victoria: I kept a small decant of NR for reference, since it comes up during my work projects a lot, but Lovely is the one I wear for pleasure. January 13, 2015 at 11:09am Reply

  • Lizzy: I’ve had my eye on this fragrance for a while–I love natural lavender and use an organic and biodynamic essential oil distilled locally around my home–and after reading your review I feel even more that I need to “just do it,” hahaha! January 12, 2015 at 8:47am Reply

    • Victoria: The lavender here is subtle, but it makes all the difference and gives much character to this perfume.

      I use lavender oil mixed in water to spray on sheets before getting into bed. One of my favorite evening rituals. 🙂 January 12, 2015 at 9:02am Reply

  • Michaela: I can hardly wait to try this one! It seems I may love it. January 12, 2015 at 8:49am Reply

    • Victoria: I really like it, but do try it on skin first to see how it develops. It has musk and amber, which some people can’t smell as well, so it’s not a good perfume for blind buys (well, few, if any, really are!) January 12, 2015 at 9:03am Reply

      • Michaela: I’ll search for a sample, thank you very much!
        And… ahem… how do you happen to know I’m prone to blind buying?! 🙂 Always reading people thoughts? 🙂 January 12, 2015 at 9:26am Reply

        • Victoria: 🙂 Oh well, all of us have been there, but blind buys are rarely that successful. It’s better to buy something after you’ve fallen hard for it, rather than trying to convince yourself to like something just because you spent the money. Speaking from experience, of course. January 12, 2015 at 1:50pm Reply

          • Michaela: 🙂 January 13, 2015 at 3:55am Reply

          • Michaela: Honestly, this year I promised myself to go wise. No blind buys, hopefully.
            Thank you very much for good advice, and for the sincere and funny comment. January 13, 2015 at 4:31am Reply

            • Victoria: That’s a good challenge! Maybe, it can be your 2015 perfume resolution. 🙂 January 13, 2015 at 11:07am Reply

  • Patricia: You know that I’m a fan, too, and have really been enjoying my bottle of BBRFW.

    Probably not a good sign for its longevity that it has already hit the perfume discounters. However, good deals are to be had for those interested.

    Thanks for a great review of this under appreciated fragrance! January 12, 2015 at 8:54am Reply

    • Victoria: Yes, they didn’t calculate it well at all. There is a big mismatch between the Brit Rhythm brand and the fragrance. January 12, 2015 at 9:05am Reply

  • Aurora: Ever since Patricia and you put this on your list of Best of 2014 I have been curious about this and now that you’ve written a beautiful review even more.

    Like you I love lavender and it’s so true it’s usually reserved to men scents and women fragrance with this note are few and far between. You describe it as ‘radiant’ and usually when you include this word in your description I end up loving the fragrance. January 12, 2015 at 9:28am Reply

    • Victoria: I also like lavender in these kind of less conventional interpretations. This note pairs so well with amber and florals. The citrusy cologne pairings are refreshing and nice too, but they’re much more classical. January 12, 2015 at 1:53pm Reply

  • solanace: Cool, something interesting to smell at my local perfume shop. Thank’s for the review! January 12, 2015 at 10:24am Reply

    • Victoria: I was pleased by this discovery, and this is my 2015 full bottle purchase. 🙂 January 12, 2015 at 1:54pm Reply

  • Sylvia Long: I saw this in Dillards and smelled it on paper- not skin. I should know better! I wasn’t impressed with the scent on paper. Your review makes it sound worth applying to test though. You know, I find myself not being willing to spray on my wrist- unless it smells wonderful on paper. I know I’m going to end up missing something nice that way, but it’s sure hard to talk myself into…
    Thanks for the review! You’ve convinced me to give it a try :). January 12, 2015 at 10:30am Reply

    • Victoria: I don’t think that it shows all of its potential on paper, because it develops so slowly. Of course, this is a nice part, as I was commenting to Margo. I like that it has several different stages. It’s as if you enjoy several perfumes in one. January 12, 2015 at 1:58pm Reply

  • Rebecca: You have actually made me want to smell a Burberry fragrance… quite an accomplishment. Who on earth is that campaign geared to? It is so drab. January 12, 2015 at 10:46am Reply

    • Victoria: Yeah, drab is a good word for it. I have no idea what they were trying to convey, other than some generic idea of “coolness.” January 12, 2015 at 1:54pm Reply

  • Margo: I tried a sample of this and was amazed at how much I liked it, as I’m not keen on the other Burberry’s. Two complete strangers stopped me to ask what the gorgeous scent was – the best sign to buy a full bottle IMO! I love it 🙂 January 12, 2015 at 1:01pm Reply

    • Victoria: It’s not a heavy perfume, but it has an amazing sillage and diffuses really well. It starts slowly and takes a long while to develop, but all stages are very good. January 12, 2015 at 1:56pm Reply

  • Andy: I tried this a couple weeks ago, spurred by its popping up in the 2014 favorites. I too liked it a lot! Surprisingly pretty, and I too found that Brit Rhythm has a similar “personality” to Love Chloé. I used to think I hated lavender in fragrances, but now I know better. In this case, I love its inclusion as an herbal, green accent among all the pretty petals. January 12, 2015 at 1:08pm Reply

    • Victoria: I’m glad that you also see Love Chloe. It’s not nearly as powdery and warm as Chloe, but the personalities are similar.

      Sometimes even a touch of lavender is enough to give perfume a spark. For instance, a lavender note in Guerlain’s Eau de Cologne du Coq gives such an exhilarating, bright accent to this cologne. January 12, 2015 at 2:03pm Reply

    • Courant: Yes, very reminiscent of Love Chloe was my first impression, but in a higher chord. I found it at the duty free where unperfumed skin had been reserved for it, preferable to Dahlia Divin (a gel sample in a sealed packet provided by the SA)
      I have purchased Rhythym since wearing it and can attest to it being very different on skin that paper January 12, 2015 at 2:37pm Reply

      • Victoria: I’ve just put Love Chloe on another arm, and I see what you mean about Brit being higher pitched. It’s sharper and crisper right off top, and I notice a green, peppery note. Love Chloe plunges straight into petals. And I love both. January 12, 2015 at 2:48pm Reply

        • Courant: So honoured that you sense that too, Victoria, thank you. Funny that you mention Petals in Love Chloe and that Rhythm has the patented ‘Petalia’ ingredient January 12, 2015 at 3:13pm Reply

          • Victoria: That’s a nice material, which smells very much like the cherry blossom petals feel–soft, silky, delicate. But it still has big presence. January 12, 2015 at 3:42pm Reply

  • Austenfan: I will sample this. Lavender is a plus in my book and it is nice to see it used by a mainstream brand. Isn’t Burberry Brit Gold supposed to be quite good as well? January 12, 2015 at 3:33pm Reply

    • Victoria: Yes, Brit Gold is also very good. I also like the original Brit and Brit Red if I crave something fruity, gourmand but not too sticky-sweet. The pear-almond accord in the first Brit is just delicious. January 12, 2015 at 3:44pm Reply

      • Austenfan: Well I know which part of the perfume counter to head to next time I visit Ici Paris January 12, 2015 at 3:46pm Reply

        • Victoria: Please let me know what you think about it! January 13, 2015 at 10:51am Reply

  • Alicia: Victoria, thank you so much for this review.I love lavender. It makes me think of my grand mother’s garden, and my chidhood summers by the sea. Thus I’ll certainly try BBR, and in all likelihood I shall be grateful to you once again, as I am for the marvelous Mysore soap, and for Cartier La Panthere and Declaration. Before your recommendations my experiences with Cartier (Must and Delices) were failures. LP and Declaration are joys; by now my bottle of the latter is nearly gone: I like it that much. Today is an ugly day, and I am reviewing an ugly book, so I am wearing something to bring some beauty into the day, the magnificent Parfum de Therese. Another of my debts to you. January 12, 2015 at 3:43pm Reply

    • Victoria: Must de Cartier used to be much better, but the latest reformulations made it sweet and plasticky in the drydown. Which is too bad.

      I’m very happy that you discovered La Panthere and Declaration, two of Cartier’s best! January 13, 2015 at 10:51am Reply

  • Nightingale: After seeing your end of year review of best fragrances of 2014 I couldn’t help but do a blind buy when I saw this at at a local discounter. BBR hasn’t disappointed me – such a nice alternative to spicy scents for winter and happens to be my SOTD! January 12, 2015 at 4:23pm Reply

    • Victoria: True, it has an uplifting character, and a touch of amber and vanilla goes nicely with the floral notes. January 13, 2015 at 10:52am Reply

  • Sofie: Thank you for the review Victoria. I love lavender and am very happy with my Impact Pour Un Homme. But although that one mellows beautifully over its course, it stays bright and herbal. And lately I’ve wanted something a bit softer. The mention of Rythm on the lists sparked my interest. And now this lovely review: real lavender, elegant, soft, dry woods… Better sniff it out before it’s gone by the sound of it :-). January 12, 2015 at 5:39pm Reply

    • Victoria: You might also want to check out Sarah Jessica Parker’s Lovely (a very mild touch of herbs, but it makes a difference) and Chanel Jersey. After being down on the EDT, I fell in love with the perfume, and now I’m learning to like the EDT more. The drydown is still too laundry softener like, but the lavender part is beautiful. January 13, 2015 at 10:57am Reply

      • Sofie: Thank you for the recommendations. I didn’t realise Lovely had lavender in it. I somehow assumed it was all about musk. Can you believe I never tried it? And here’s a perfume that you find everywhere :-). I’ll be sure to give it a go now. I tried Jersey once, but dismissed it quite quickly. I will try the perfume next time. Last time I was in the mall I noticed Jicky in perfume form too ( don’t care for the modern edp or edt, not sure what concentration it is). I feel an excursion in soft lavenders coming up :-). January 14, 2015 at 6:52am Reply

        • Victoria: You’re going to have fun with your lavender quest, especially since lavender can be surprising and unpredictable. SJP also had a stronger lavender scent called Covet, but it was a big flop. I’m not sure it was really that bad (the reviews were pretty unenthusiastic), but it misses the mark. January 14, 2015 at 11:42am Reply

  • Floragal: To my nose this smells like grape flavored water. Maybe the combo of lavendar and violet, but it’s a clear resemblance because I regularly flavor my water with grape water flavoring drops.
    Love lavender, love violet but not sure I can get past smelling like my regular drink 😉
    Very helpful review nonetheless! January 12, 2015 at 6:24pm Reply

    • Victoria: It’s probably the orange blossom part that makes you think of grape flavored water, since they share the same component. January 13, 2015 at 10:57am Reply

  • sunmisun: From what I’ve seen, My Burberry is getting some positive attention too. I had never thought to look at Burberry for a good scent, but it appears I have been mistaken! Thanks for the review 🙂 January 12, 2015 at 10:01pm Reply

    • Victoria: I have a sample of My Burberry, and I still need to give a thorough test, but it smells very good on paper. The original Brit made a splash when it came out for its clever pear note. January 13, 2015 at 11:00am Reply

  • Mike Perez: A friend on Basenotes gifted me a large decant of this because she knows I love lavender scents and I thoroughly enjoyed draining it.

    There is a distinct ‘starch’ smell to this, almost like that spray starch that you spray on clothes before ironing them, that I found compelling and addictive. It’s a fun, well-done aromatic fragrance and if I blind sniffed it I would never guess that a designer brand released it.

    The dry down has a slightly irritating musk note, but besides that this one is all thumbs up for me. January 12, 2015 at 10:15pm Reply

    • Courant: Hi Mike, I thought it was the rice powder smell as in Love Chloe, but I do know what you mean January 13, 2015 at 4:18am Reply

    • Victoria: The musks can be tricky, because everyone perceives them so differently (and some people can’t smell them at all). I agree with you that it doesn’t smell like a typical designer scent. January 13, 2015 at 11:01am Reply

  • marlene: Love lavender,it is a comforting scent when it is a good quality perfume. I have a large jar of Crabtree and Evelyn lavender cream. As a little aromatherapy,I put some on before bed. Sweet dreams! January 13, 2015 at 12:59am Reply

    • Victoria: I have C&E’s rose cream, but not the lavender one. All in all, their body products are really well-made and are true to their names. Lavender is such a soothing aroma. January 13, 2015 at 11:03am Reply

  • Therése: Tried it on skin yesterday and it’s really lovely! January 13, 2015 at 2:49am Reply

    • Victoria: Glad to hear this! 🙂 January 13, 2015 at 11:04am Reply

  • annemarie: I’m afraid I didn’t care for Rhythm. After a great opening, it sprouted bitter claws and dug its way into my skin and stayed there for hours. I’ll try it again. Maybe it was having a bad day. 🙂 January 13, 2015 at 5:32am Reply

    • Victoria: Or maybe you just didn’t like it! 🙂 Everyone perceives scents differently, which is the best part of talking about them. January 13, 2015 at 11:08am Reply

  • Michaela: Short story: sample drained, order placed, bottle on the way. Beautiful fragrance, and she likes me.

    Long story
    I rushed to get a sample and liked every drop of it. Normally this would end on my wishlist because I don’t have any similar perfume in my small collection. So, what’s the hurry to buy it? Well… Victoria’s concerns and Amer’s conclusions following his short but fruitful investigation seem right. Brit Rhythm hits the marked like a meteorite, and it’s already going to disappear. A local online discounter offers it for sale, about 33 $ for 90 ml bottle, with the mention they won’t carry it again. This applies to 90 ml bottles for the moment, but the smaller ones are likely to follow. I wonder why they bothered to launch it at all, if they don’t even try to sell it. I’m sorry for the perfumers, their work on this fragrance deserves recognition, it’s so well done. But if its life on the market is so short, it wouldn’t even draw attention. Such a pity.

    Now, this is personal. I like Brit Rhythm a lot. As some people mentioned here Love, Chloe, I tried them side by side. Yes, I can definitely see a similarity in character. Elegant, understated, lasting all day long, good for any occasion. But I am struggling to finish 1 ml vial of Love Chloe for a year by now, I can’t wear it at all, it gets like plastic on my skin. Brit Rhythm is very nice to me, all the stages are very rewarding, and the transition is such a treat. I may be my fantasy, but I feel a reminiscence of the wonderful lavender-vanilla of Pour un Homme de Caron. This one is very floral, though.

    I’m very happy with it. Thank you for sharing your discoveries and for the exceptional guidance. January 22, 2015 at 3:49am Reply

    • Victoria: Thank you for letting me know! So glad to hear that you found a new love. And what timing with the looming discontinuation and discounts. I repeat myself, but really, I can only shake my head and say, what a shame. It really was a wonderful fragrance, and it’s too bad they didn’t launch it under a different Burberry brand, instead of Rhythm. January 22, 2015 at 10:19am Reply

  • Joy: I just had the chance to sample this yesterday. I was not impressed in the Sephora Store. However, by the time I ran another errand and got to my car, it had fully bloomed. I had almost forgotten that I had put it on and was wondering where the fabulous fragrance was coming from. This was the dry down to the wood scent, just a little bit cedar. It was really a stunner. It also lasted all evening. So many of the new fragrances do not last on me.

    Thank you so much for reviewing this, Victoria. I never would have tried it otherwise. It was unusual and very interesting. I ordered a bottle! January 22, 2015 at 3:52pm Reply

    • Victoria: The drydown is really fantastic, and I love that it doesn’t develop too quickly and you get to enjoy different layers. I’m really bummed out that it’s going to be discontinued so soon. It really was one of my favorite discoveries as of late. January 23, 2015 at 2:28pm Reply

  • Jane: This reminds me very strongly of a favourite Guerlain Aqua Allegoria from a few years ago called Lavande Velours. I think this had a touch of violet in it as well. March 3, 2015 at 10:30am Reply

    • Victoria: You’re right, Lavande Velours also had a touch of violet, which is such a nice combination with lavender. March 7, 2015 at 8:18am Reply

  • Judy: Late commenting, but found Rhythm today at my local Walgreens drugstore. This is the first time I’ve seen it in a store! September 2, 2015 at 4:36pm Reply

    • Victoria: It’s been discontinued, so it’s free game for discounters. September 3, 2015 at 2:42am Reply

  • Corine kiwan: I used to love BRIT RHYTHM but last time I bought it from Beirut duty free on my way to Australia i got disappointed with the new or different smell . On my way back i reported to the duty free shop of course i didn’t get any help . I would like to know if there is a fake perfume in the market or is that possble you changed the fragrance ? April 26, 2016 at 3:07pm Reply

    • Victoria: I imagine that it might have been reformulated since you’ve first tried it. April 29, 2016 at 6:39am Reply

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