Rania J. Oud Assam Eau de Parfum is rich oud and all that that entails; it’s pungent, animalistic, earthy, and fecal in its early development. Given some time, it turns leathery, spiced, and woody as it plays with smoky, smooth vetiver, incense, and tonka bean. The notes are:
- top notes: bergamot, sweet orange, bitter orange
- heart notes: oud
- base notes: cedar wood, vetiver, frankincense, black pepper, tonka bean, musk
It opened with bitter orange peels, subtle sweet orange, and earthy, slightly animalistic oud over a bed of spicy-sweet frankincense and black pepper but most of the notes evaporated in minutes and left a potent oud behind. Cool, smoky vetiver breezed around the oud, which amplified the oud’s barnyard aspect, smelling of horses and hay (and everything a horse-stall would entail, including not-yet-mucked out horse-stalls). It was smoky, leathery, earthy, musky, and very animalic.
After 15 minutes of development, the oud was smoky, woody, and earthy with less overt fecal tones, while the vetiver was smoother, less harsh. There was a delicate touch of smoky-sweet incense with soft musk. It smelled of dry, warm woods, leather, smoke, and musk, which were all well-blended together and the oud no longer came across as pungent after 30 minutes of wear.
The progression turned more linear from there with the oud still in focus but slowly shared the stage with vetiver, tonka bean, and musk in the drydown.
For testing, I used 1/3 of a 0.7ml sample vial dabbed to the underside and topside of my wrist area on my left arm. I used an unscented moisturizer prior to applying the scent as this is also my swatching arm (aka, incredibly parched at any given moment) as I found scent did not hold well here otherwise.
It lasted for five hours until it was a skin-scent and about eight hours before it was quite difficult to detect on my skin. The sillage and projection were moderate with the sillage dropping faster than the projection within two hours.
I enjoy oud as a note, though the pungency of the oud here is more than I tend to go for, so it’s not something I could see myself reaching for often enough to merit a full bottle, but it is a lovely option for those who prefer a stronger oud.
- 50ml for $155
- 0.7ml sample for $4