Lancôme are getting onto the oud bandwagon with a fragrance composition of their own they named L'Autre Ôud (The Other Oud); the circumflex accent on the "O" has been added for branding purposes.
From a perfume blogger's perspective, it is absolutely fascinating to feel like your are reliving to some extent a craze and an infatuation with a perfumery material comparable to the one for violet at the end of the 19th century...
You had heard, or rather read about Europe going crazy about the elusive scent of violets in books, and there you are, witnessing a similar mania for a new-to-Europe at least and rare in principle aromatic material.
Every perfume house wants to have their clearly-spelled-out oud fragrance, this is the remarkable aspect of the phenomenon. I just checked to see if French mass-market brand Laurence Dumont had a vanilla-oud or a violet-oud, but not for the moment being although they launched a new duo of scents with notes of "precious woods".
As we stressed in the past, this appears to be more of a top-down approach, from the brands to the consumers than the reverse unless a Middle Eastern clientèle is deemed to be a primary target.
Willy-nilly, the mainstream Western audience is nevertheless being educated into appreciating the presence of this new olfactory tonality in their perfumes.
The onomastics of "L'Autre Ôud" reveals that Lancôme are well-aware that they need to stress they are aware of the extreme popularity of the trend. So they promise a different, alternative oud, at least in name.
The composition centering on a classical rose-oud core is said to feature 17 ingredients.
Top notes: labdanum, clary sage, saffron, nagarmota;
Heart notes: Bulgarian rose, Turkish rose, agarwood/oud
Base notes: agarwood/oud, oak moss, vetiver, patchouli, amiris, myrrh, balsam Guryan
Price: 120€ for 75 ml.