M7 by Yves Saint Laurent (2002)

Year: 2002
Nose: Jacques Cavallier, Alberto Morillas

M7 is quite hard for me to review, it has been my "signature" scent around 2003 (actually more than "signature" it was the only bottle I had at that time, and I was not even that passionate about perfumes, I think it was a gift and I used to bath in it – if only I knew they would have discontinued it). To smell it again today after years threw me back in time, which kind of makes it difficult to review it "objectively". However I must say that it aged so well, I am ultra happy to have it back in my rotation, actually it is even better than I remembered – such a complete, rich, irresistible scent. Thousands of words have been written about M7, mostly about the fact it's the first scent introducing agar wood to Western consumers: if we speak about "oud", today there is surely dozens of scents which have a more bold, powerful and deep oud note. The fact is that M7 does not want to be an "oud something", meaning that it's not about oud being thrown among random notes (to make it sound different from other ouds); M7 it's a perfume, with capital "p", therefore the oud is only a component beautifully and masterfully blended with the rest. Basically the original M7 is a great, irresistible, captivating, mellow and elegant woody-ambery scent with sweet nuances – a medicinal-winey and slightly boozy kind of sweet – with a genius hint of dry herbs (oregano) following the "lesson" of Ambre Sultan about how delightfully amber & herbs go together, and the dark, woody (and not rubbery) agar wood base. That's it: a dark, yet friendly scent, rich but gentle on skin basically anytime of the year, refined, deep, versatile. It may look simple, but you smell it once, and you will recognize it anywhere in the future. It has appeal, class, it fits like a glove, it has the same polarizing charm of a well-cut suit, which may have nothing flashy or bold, but makes you stand out for sure. Fans of modern ouds may not like this, as there is no "in-your-face" oud notes – instead the note it's more delicate and blended with the rest of the components; but oud aside, M7 is a complete masterpiece of strength, elegance, depth, contrasts and modernity. It is a banality, but: "they don't make them like this anymore". Don't feed the sharks (sellers), but grab it if you find it a decent price!


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