Ormonde Jayne Woman : 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.

Beauty borders on tangible and intangible. It is not one thing or another, itself being a combination of parts, some of which are slightly odd. The difference between pretty and beautiful is in the juxtaposition of  strange elements with expected ones. In Ormonde Jayne Woman, it is a bitter resinous note of black hemlock, folded into the cardamom and sandalwood laced composition. The combination of spicy vibrancy and sultry sweetness lends Ormonde Woman a memorable character. The warmth of amber provides a brocaded background for the interplay of woody and sweet notes.

I would not classify this as an evening fragrance just because I want to smell it constantly and feel comfortable wearing it notwithstanding the occasion. It was the first fragrance I have sampled from Ormonde Jayne, and it still remains my favorite.

The mysterious black hemlock is a type of spruce, known also as Mountain Hemlock (Tsuga mertensiana). Other Ormonde Jayne woman notes include cardamon, coriander and grass oil; black hemlock, violet and jasmine absolute; vetiver, cedar wood, amber, and sandalwood.

Picture: Couple On Veranda At Night, rubiyat.com.



  • Diane: Ooh, this sounds beautifully rich. I must try this one soon. You are such a temptress! June 9, 2005 at 6:10pm Reply

  • Tania: My favorite too. I still retain a deep fondness for Champaca and I love to wear Frangipani, but Ormonde just makes me feel like a badass. June 9, 2005 at 5:08pm Reply

  • mireille: I’ve never tried this. But now I know I must. And V, you can share a diatribe with me ANY TIME. June 9, 2005 at 8:35pm Reply

  • Victoria: Do try it, ladies! Although I admit that it works better in the cooler weather for me. June 10, 2005 at 1:00pm Reply

  • LaureAnne: This is a Must Have for me. It is absolutely gorgeous. And unique. Yep. June 10, 2005 at 3:02pm Reply

  • parislondres: I agree with you – this is lovely, unique and I love to smell it on cooler days. In saying that – the weather has been a bit chilly and I did enjoy wearing Ormonde yesterday. June 13, 2005 at 11:29am Reply

  • Victoria: Dear N,
    I am desperate to wear it, however it has been far too hot these days. Love the smooth finish of this OJ. June 13, 2005 at 11:38am Reply

  • Gentiana: Well, this is a mysterious smell…
    Very, very intriguing – all the OJ line is intriguing, but smelling OJ W you recognize an undercurrent that here is strong, but it can be found more or less in all of the fragrances in the line.
    I have no idea how Black Hemlock in reality smells.
    I am a very little bit bothered by the slightly herborist’s shop smell and by the same sweet note (like smelling honey in a jar), that is there in more of the OJ perfumes.
    This is a very original perfume and makes me think and dream. Lovely and unique. February 17, 2014 at 1:53am Reply

  • Kat: Beautiful description–just tried my first sample and I can’t stop sniffing my arm! 🙂 July 4, 2014 at 12:22pm Reply

  • Nora Szekely: I first owned a sample that came without a spray, and putting it on my skin it was like not love. However recently I got a bottle in a swap (I went into the affair half-heartedly) and fell head over heels for it. I’ve reached the point when smelling something unique is a rare experience, but this scent is incomparable to my nose. Also rather addictive making me reach for it fairly often. Now I cherish my bottle like a rare gem. February 19, 2018 at 2:21pm Reply

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