Cinq Mondes Eau Egyptienne : Perfume Review



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

Cinq Mondes is a line of spa products inspired by traditional beauty treatments. Eau Égyptienne was created by Olivia Giacobetti in 2005. The light fragrance is intended as a mist that can also be used on hair.

Olivia Giacobetti’s fragrances have a remarkable translucence paired with complexity, and this fragrance certainly bears Giacobetti’s fingerprint. The serene and quiet composition undulates slowly, as the top notes of verdant mint and silky geranium meld into the incense smoke swirling gently. Resinous and balsamic notes are blended to create a perfectly smooth arrangement. It is reminiscent of the layers of multicolored silks that allow a glimpse of certain hues, while presenting a unified and unusual whole. Under the sheer veil of luxurious incense and spices, the patterns formed of flowers begin to emerge. While the florals are not very distinct, other than a hint of tea rose laced with myrrh and a few scattered white blossoms touched by ginger, they lend an opulent softness that is a perfect counterpoint to the wooded notes.

The drydown is a subtle smokiness of incense ashes falling over a fragrant lotus blossom. Unlike Iunx waters, Eau Égyptienne is much longer lasting. In fact, its tenacity is what I hoped Iunx waters would be—it remains perceptible, yet stays close to the skin. It is a fragrance to wear for yourself and a few lucky ones who are close enough (or allowed to lean in enough) to notice its ashes over flower petals character.

Notes include lotus flower, rose, mint, lentiscus (which is an evergreen tree), incense, myrrh, papyrus, jasmine, juniper, geranium and cumin. Blue water lily like the one depicted above was an essential part of the ancient Egyptian culture. More information on this topic can be found here, as well as a list of other fragrances containing lotus and water lily.

Available at Beautyhabit.



  • Sisonne: Dear V, your review made me curious – I think I´m repeating myself…;) Unfortunately I don´t know where to find Cinq Mondes in Germany (or Europe) *sigh* September 14, 2005 at 7:13am Reply

  • Sisonne: V, I just found their homepage – not available in Germany…I emailed them, well perhaps they´ll answer (Dior haven´t yet – I want these samples so bad 😉 ). September 14, 2005 at 7:34am Reply

  • annieytown: I have been curious about this fragrance for a while. Meggie67 was the lemming starter. This lovely review reminded me that I really need to do a beautyhabit order. Thanks V!!! September 14, 2005 at 8:18am Reply

  • Robin: I adore Giacobetti, but didn’t love this one the first time I tried it. Cumin & I are not the best of friends. Will give it another try, but have a feeling that the Costes room spray is what I need to try next… September 14, 2005 at 9:07am Reply

  • Laura: I’ve been wearing this since midsummer and I really like it. Wearing it is like stepping inside a kaleidoscope—-with the perfume notes turning into light and colors in constant flux. I finally got a sample of her Costes and, though I like it and find it similar to EE in some ways, it is more obvious and more extroverted. There’s something bordering on rankness in the drydown of Costes, too, that stops me from completely enjoying it.
    Eau Egyptienne and Extrait de Songe are two of Olivia Giacobetti’s loveliest creations,in my opinion, out of many wonderful ones. September 14, 2005 at 5:25am Reply

  • Marina: Giacobetti’s scents with their, as you so wonderfully noted, translucency and complexity are like aquarelle…gosh what is the word I am looking for -watercolors! This one has mint and geranuim, so probably isn’t for me, but I am sure it is stunning nevertheless, like all of her creations. September 14, 2005 at 8:25am Reply

  • Tania: That sounds extremely wearable. Must find it. Thanks for the report! September 14, 2005 at 11:11am Reply

  • BoisdeJasmin: L, you were the one who sparked my interest in the perfume. I was very curious to try it, and it was such a pleasant discovery. Moreover, I recently acquired a small bottle (one of their refillable ones) of Extrait de Songes, therefore I am happy. September 14, 2005 at 11:27am Reply

  • BoisdeJasmin: Dear C, I try to research European availability, but sometimes it is difficult to find the information. I hope that you will hear from them! September 14, 2005 at 11:33am Reply

  • BoisdeJasmin: Annie, it is sheer, yet potent enough–a quality Giacobetti executes so well. I would love to hear your thoughts on it. September 14, 2005 at 11:35am Reply

  • BoisdeJasmin: Marinochka, mint and geranium are very faint, adding a crisp touch to incense, and I would imagine that they would not bother you. It is definitely worth trying. September 14, 2005 at 11:45am Reply

  • BoisdeJasmin: R, I must have a high cumin tolerance, because I do not notice it here. I suppose if one does not like cumin, it may not be the best option to consider. September 14, 2005 at 11:53am Reply

  • BoisdeJasmin: Tania, yes, it is very wearable and interesting. I am glad I tried it. September 14, 2005 at 11:59am Reply

  • parislondres: Great review dear V – I have to try this perfume soon. They are getting known for spa.
    Sounds fab – I love the notes – the only note I am not sure about is cumin – love in food but not on me. 😉

    xoxo September 14, 2005 at 12:30pm Reply

  • BoisdeJasmin: Dear N, I personally do not notice much cumin, or if it is there, it is extremely well blended. I am tempted to try their spa products as well. Have you tried any of them, or have you been to their spas? September 14, 2005 at 12:45pm Reply

  • Anya: Lovely review, V. So many niches, so little time!

    The use of mint is minimal in perfumery, and I play with them all the time, since I love them to sniff (not eat, funnily enough.) Can you tell me if the mint is peppermint, or spearmint, or perhaps that p/s hybrid, such as the one the Cubans use for mojitos, and the Asians use in cold spring rolls?

    Or, perhaps, its bergamot mint oil, one of my favorites? September 14, 2005 at 3:44pm Reply

  • Anya: Oh, N. I have to laugh — I just made my sniff mint, not eat it comment, and I reread your comment about cumin. Detest cumin in perfumes beyond belief. I refuse to use it. However, I adore it in food. Go figger! September 14, 2005 at 3:45pm Reply

  • BoisdeJasmin: Anya, it seems to be peppermint, but it is very soft. There is also a black pepper reminiscent note (soft and warm) that appears alongside peppermint.

    I love mint in fragrances, but I agree–it is not often used in perfumery. Bergamot mint oil is amazing, and I would love to see more of that. September 14, 2005 at 6:18pm Reply

  • Katie: Oh how funny – I was just looking at that YESTERDAY and wondering what it might be like. Thanks V, that was terribly handy of you! September 14, 2005 at 9:33pm Reply

  • BoisdeJasmin: Katie, I am glad my timing was so perfect! 🙂 September 15, 2005 at 1:46am Reply

  • Katie: Hee, it was perfect, indeed. I was just lazily browsing, and I suddenly found this and wondered why no one had mentioned it. Now I am curious enough to seek it out – so thank you, so much. September 15, 2005 at 4:13am Reply

  • michel: In the osmothéque to Paris durind the visit they present an elixir ,the first parfum composed in the history, called “parfum royal” composed with 27 ingredients, wich is based on a old formule from orient.
    It’s very closed from “l’eau egyptienne” in parfum formulation, can you immagine ? it’s EXTRAORDINAIRE , of course you have to be very carreful when you smell it to don’t touch your nose and of course this the great Kerleo wich reformulate it .
    sorry for my so bad school english September 20, 2005 at 5:53pm Reply

  • BoisdeJasmin: Michel, that sounds fascinating! I am planning a trip soon, therefore information like this is what I would love to know. I can only imagine how stunning Parfum Royal is.

    No need to make apologies for your English! It is good. Of course, you should feel free to write in French if that is easier. September 20, 2005 at 7:56pm Reply

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