Narciso Rodriguez Musc for Her Oil : Long Lost Favorite



Do you have a discontinued fragrance that you long to see back on the perfume counter, and failing that, to replace with something similar? I receive many emails about long lost favorites, and most of the time I respond to them with my personal suggestions. However, I’ve decided that it might be better to post such requests here on Bois de Jasmin, so that readers can include their own recommendations. So, going forward, if you are searching for a discontinued fragrance and need help, you’re welcome to email me (editor at boisdejasmin dot com), and we will do our best to help.

After receiving several emails about Narciso Rodriguez for Her Musc Oil, I’ve decided to look into it. The oil form of Musc for Her was a limited edition that focused on the creamy musk facet of the original Eau de Toilette. The citrus, sharp amber, and woody notes were sheared out, with the elegant, luscious musk brought center stage. Musc for Her Oil smelled deliciously of warm skin and apricot flesh, with a hint of honey. Musc for Her collection, which also included Musc for Her EDT and Musc for Him EDT (black bottle) was launched in 2003. In 2009, Narciso Rodriguez added Musc for Her Intense Eau de Parfum and Musc for Him Eau de Parfum (iridescent violet bottle). Then in 2010, Essence Eau de Musc (silver bottle) appeared on the counters. These days we also have a limited edition called Essence Musc Intense Eau de Parfum. That is exactly why I dislike flankers—figuring out how they are related makes me feel like I’m solving some cognitive reasoning game.

Currently, Sephora stocks Narciso Rodriguez for Her, Musc for Her Intense Eau de Parfum, and Essence Eau de Musc, leaving those of us who loved the plain Musc for Her and its oil version searching for a replacement. The floral musks are numerous, but few combine the sensual softness of musk with a milky sweetness, the way Musc for Her did. One of my current favorites is Guerlain Cruel Gardénia, which despite the name smells little of gardenia, but a lot of musk. The floral notes have the compelling impression of petals steeped in milk. Sarah Jessica Parker Lovely is a softer take on the original Narciso Rodriguez For Her, and it is polished to remove any rough edges. If Lovely is a tender embrace, Serge Lutens Clair De Musc is a passionate kiss. The musk is garnished with iris, sandalwood and neroli, making Clair de Musc a richer blend, but it stays close to the skin, creating an intimate aura. Les Néréides Fleur Poudrée de Musc smells like warm skin dusted with rose scented powder.

Among fragrances that place a stronger accent on musk, I highly recommend Kiehl’s Original Musk. It is a splendid rich musk, with patchouli highlighting the seductive warmth in the drydown. The Body Shop White Musk is clean and enveloping, a musk classic. Like Musc for Her, it has a delicate floral accent, but the main flavor is provided by the plush musk layers. Underrated Etro Musk is another memorable perfume I’ve discovered in my search. The drydown is embellished with sandalwood, and the creamy rose is infused into the rich musk accord. Finally, while Musc for Her is more understated than the original Narciso Rodriguez for Her EDT, it is the only fragrance from the current collection that gives me the same idea of warm skin and hot petals.

Do you have a favorite musk perfume? If you love Musc for Her, what else would you recommend to try?



  • patuxxa: I had no idea it was a limited edition! Thankfully the opaque black bottle is great for safeguarding the scent (and I keep all my perfumes in a drawer anyway), so my bottle will last me some good years yet!

    Kiehl’s is nice, but it lacks the creamy and neroli facets of the Narciso Rodriguez oil… March 27, 2012 at 9:26am Reply

  • Miss Conduct: The Non-Blonde’s review of Grés Cabaret inspired me to blind-buy it, as it was under $30. Frangratica readers said it resembles both Narciso Rodriguez for Her and Lovely. Others objected to its “dirtiness.” I didn’t smell anything I would consider excessively dirty or animalic, but it did have that element of laundry product, so perhaps a musk-lover would enjoy it. Sadly, I didn’t like wearing it but I often spray it around my bedroom. March 27, 2012 at 11:58am Reply

  • Le Critique de Parfum: I recently fell in love with Kiehl’s Original Musk, what a surprising little guy.

    “Essence Eau de Musc Intense Eau de Parfum” doesn’t exist though 😉 March 27, 2012 at 11:58am Reply

  • Victoria: I also miss the creamy floral aspect in Kiehl’s, but it is a good runner up. I loved the first Musc collection. The current one is good, but it doesn’t have that “warm skin and petals” feeling. March 27, 2012 at 12:07pm Reply

  • Victoria: I started out liking Cabaret a lot, but after wearing it for a whole day, I realized that it bothered me with its sharpness. The dry amber and woods in the base have an unpleasant raspy feeling. I didn’t give up my bottle, but I hardly ever wear it. March 27, 2012 at 12:09pm Reply

  • Victoria: Essence Musc Intense Eau de Parfum (or Eau de Parfum Intense, depending on how a retailer lists these variations) is a current limited edition, exclusive to Sephora. March 27, 2012 at 12:14pm Reply

  • ida: Fantastic idea. Anything similar to the original Giorgio Armani Mania? And btw had no idea that Musc for her was discontinued. March 27, 2012 at 12:16pm Reply

  • Victoria: I will post Armani Mania next week then. 

    Musc for Her is still available. It is now sold in a different concentration and the fragrance smells a bit different–more floral, warmer. Still very good though. March 27, 2012 at 12:23pm Reply

  • Debbie: I will look forward to the Mania post. I have half a coveted bottle of original Mania safely stored. It was a true horror to find it discontinued, and not only that, its name given to some other Armani scent that I’d never buy in a thousand year.

    I’d also like to see the women’s Yohji Yamamoto resurrected. March 27, 2012 at 2:22pm Reply

  • Victoria: Then I look forward to your comments on Mania. It's confusing how Armani has developed that brand. Not even sure why they discontinued Mania. And Elle for Her White! Another good, little black dress perfume. March 27, 2012 at 4:38pm Reply

  • Anne: Oh I used to love Helmut Lang fragrance!!!! It had lavender in it, and musk I too amongst other scent. It was a “skin” scent . I used to love it. But it s gone…. Boohoo March 27, 2012 at 5:30pm Reply

  • behemot: For someone who is looking for a musk fragrance with more “personality”, I would recommend trying Lorenzo Villoresi “Musk”. It has woody notes of sandalwood, cedarwood and other exotic woods; rose, geranium, vanilla, and a base of (synthetic) Tonquin musk.
    It is available from, 50 ml for $80. It does not have much in common with NR fragrances though. March 27, 2012 at 6:00pm Reply

  • Cybele: I really miss the Musc for him oil, this was my favorite musc.
    Don’t like the Kiehls. Yatagan in low doses is nice and Clair de Musc. I wanted to like Le Labo Musc 25 but it reminds me of surgery. Love the musc in the drydown of Envy. March 27, 2012 at 7:46pm Reply

  • Amer: I remember there was also a male version of the oil. I had tried it and smelled like nothing. To my nose it was almost unscented. I guess I am anosmic to the musc used. March 28, 2012 at 8:43am Reply

  • Stacey: Funny you mention it, as I wore my small LV Musk decant last week and was loving it. It’s such a warm, floral, powdery musk. I was expecting it to be very similar to Teint de Neige, which it is to a degree, but it’s more accessible because of the floral notes. March 28, 2012 at 8:54am Reply

  • Isabeau: One of my favourite musk fragrances is definitely Musk by Mona di Orio!

    And I hope that one day Plus Que Jamais will be back at the guerlain Counter. March 28, 2012 at 8:54am Reply

  • Victoria: I loved it too. There was one Helmut Lang fragrance Velvione that contained nothing but musk. So good! March 28, 2012 at 11:09am Reply

  • Victoria: I like the musk base in some LV fragrances, but now that you mention it, I don’t think that I’ve smelled Musk. Sounds very interesting! March 28, 2012 at 11:10am Reply

  • Victoria: I like musk base in Teint de Neige very much. It gives such a warm, cozy feeling to the drydown. March 28, 2012 at 11:11am Reply

  • Victoria: Le Labo Musc 25 didn’t do much for me. I was expecting something more voluptuous, but it’s strangely cold. March 28, 2012 at 11:12am Reply

  • Victoria: That’s possible. Everyone is different in terms of what musks he can perceive. March 28, 2012 at 11:13am Reply

  • Victoria: I also wish for Plus Que Jamais to return. Such a beautiful floral that makes me think of autumn and frost covered roses. March 28, 2012 at 11:14am Reply

  • Lynn Morgan: Musc 25 is divine- the perfume portrait of Los Angeles! It does have that funky, nasty defiled subtext- if you know the scent, you know what I am talking about- that suggests the aftermath of a sex crime but if you like a touch of depravity with your perfume (and I mean that as a compliment of the highest magnitude) it is a great scent for you. Wouldn’t recommend it for anybody under 21, though; it might summon Child Protective Services! Another wonderful but light musk is Memoire Liquide’s “Nudite Absolu”: a powdery white musk, with a soft brush of floral, very subtle and delicate and warm like freshly showered skin. Your audience has to be very close to smal it, but that’s OK; it’s an extremely intimate scent and you wouldn’t want to share it with the whole room. March 28, 2012 at 6:53pm Reply

  • Victoria: Lynn, your descriptions make me want to rush out and sample the perfumes in question! 🙂 March 28, 2012 at 8:08pm Reply

  • Lynn Morgan: A belated note to everyone seeking a soft white musk to replace the late and much lamented Narcisco Rodrieguez version- you might look into “blending bars” like Melange and Beyond Sense- they usually have perfume oils called “China Musk” and “China Rain” that are white musks with floral hints, very pretty and very affordable. Also, there is a company called Vinci&Rakos that produces a powdery musk scent they call “Angel” (no relation to the Mugler). Vince & Rakos also claim that they can reproduce discontinued fragrances if you still have a drop or two left in the bottle, but I have never investigated this service. I believe their website is March 30, 2012 at 5:16pm Reply

  • ida: I am utterly confused with all the Narciso Rodriguez scents in different concentrations smelling nothing alike. I can’t seem to wrap my head around it lol! April 5, 2012 at 4:52am Reply

  • ida: Now that almost sounds too good to be true. Will investigate 😀 April 5, 2012 at 4:54am Reply

  • t: You can find nr musc for her and him oil on Ebay, it always pops up here and there. August 2, 2012 at 11:33am Reply

  • Isabelle: Dear Viktoria,
    Narciso Rodriguez Musc for Her Oil is available again – but again as limited edition!
    I read your review a long time ago about this oil and was very desappointed, thinking I’d never be able to discover it.
    And today… a bottle is on its way to me!
    Have a beautiful day, kind regards,
    Isabelle September 17, 2013 at 4:17am Reply

    • Victoria: Thank you so much, Isabelle! So many people miss Musc Oil, and you’ve just made someone very happy with your news. 🙂 September 17, 2013 at 5:16am Reply

    • Angela: Nordstrom’s currently has the perfume oil, I just got three bottles 🙂 October 7, 2013 at 10:30pm Reply

  • Claire: Hi ! I am discovering Narciso Rodriguez For Her 10 years later… I would like to know if Musc Collection purple bottle, has similar fragrance compared to oil for her and For Her Eau de toilette and Eau de parfum. Thank you very much ! I have to seek Norstrom about oil ! Hugs from France. (I never had musk perfumes before). October 8, 2013 at 9:50am Reply

  • Claire: I bought NR For Her this morning (Eau de Parfum). In my opinion it is darker, warmer, animals note like Musc Koublai khan but female fragrance. Unfortunatly in France Oil Musc for her isn’t available for the moment. Too bad.

    I usually wear floral intense perfumes powdery as First, Soir de Lune, Paris, Tresor or cyprus like Mitsouko, woody fragrances like Feminite du Bois.
    With FOR HER, I had the feeling to smell my own skin. Myself. I found MY perfume.
    So precious, powdery and same time, hot and intense by its musk. I think about a vintage perfume when I smell it and I imagine myself in a park of a castle with roses.

    I never smell OIL and hope to discover it pretty fast. October 9, 2013 at 7:47am Reply

  • Tish Rourke: A friend gave me the little Musc rollerball oil and I fell in love! Everyday I wore it people would stop me and say, what are you wearing?
    Well, I’m out now and have searched for it to no avail. I just can’t believe it’s Ben discontinued that’s just crazy? I guess I’m in the same boat as everyone else, sad….

    Thanks for your info,
    Tish Rourke November 19, 2013 at 5:32am Reply

    • Victoria: According to some of the commenters, it’s now available at Nordstrom’s. I haven’t seen it in Europe, so I can’t say, but it’s worth checking at the NR counter. November 19, 2013 at 11:36am Reply

    • Laura: At Bloomie’s at the Mall at Short Hills. I’m sure they ship anywhere. Hope this helps! April 20, 2014 at 6:49pm Reply

  • Laura: It has been reintroduced!!! I couldn’t believe it–I’m so happy. Found it (in slightly new packaging) at Bloomingdale’s at the Short Hills Mall. April 20, 2014 at 6:48pm Reply

  • Savita: For those who miss and still want NR Musc Oil version, it is currently available on the Berdorf Goodman website. It is also in a different bottle (black bottle with pink label). July 1, 2014 at 12:33pm Reply

  • Sharon: Musk or musc…. it used to my favorite scent, then it became my least favorite. I owned Kiehls version but gave it away because it began to remind me of “old man” cologne. I once ordered musk and amber oils from C.O. Bigelow and discovered I could not detect their musk at all! So disappointing. I bought white musk from The Body Shop, but now it smells like a man’s scent. I own a small bottle of Skin Musk by Bonne Bell which harkens back to the way many musk fragrances smelled decades ago — light, sweet, tinged with clover or muguet. Musc Ravageur is not pleasant, but Bruno Acampora musc is very much like one of the original Aveda fragrances — heady spice and then soft in the dry down. I’m still looking for the perfect musk! February 21, 2015 at 1:01pm Reply

  • Veronica Light: I’m searching broken heartedly for the return of NR MUSC oil. I heard it may return this spring 2019 but if it does not what is the verdict for a close 2nd? February 16, 2019 at 3:06pm Reply

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