Let’s start by (over)simplifying a little: Hermes Merveilles perfume is where orange meets amber. And, like those couples where one has an outspoken personality and the other won’t talk nor smile too much, results may vary.
If what you get on your skin – as I did on the paper strip – is a prominent orange and lemon, then amber will provide a warm support, although the overall effect made me think at times of a herbalist’s shop. If, on the other hand – and that’s my skin talking now – amber takes over, repressing the citrus and flattening all the rest of peppery woody notes, then the effect is not that great.
However, I wouldn’t blame the perfume for that, besides, on my skin it improved a lot at some point, at the same time when the citrus on the paper strip started to subside. The amber in this perfume is actually ambergris or, to put it bluntly, whale puke (check this video to know more about it), which has a richer smell, that is also salty and woody. And that is why this fragrance will give back sea-water and pine-tree notes as well.
Sophisticated citrus with a warm side, Hermes perfume Eau Des Merveilles is officially for women, but amber pulls the fragrance towards the masculine front, so it’s practically unisex. It strikes a balance between warmth and freshness that makes it good all-year round.
It was one of the last Hermes perfumes for women to be launched before Jean-Claude Ellena was appointed as in-house perfumer in 2004.