Dior Oud Ispahan Review-It’s either Love or an Instant Hate

The review of Dior Oud Ispahan perfume is a tricky one. I have grown up in an environment where oud/ Agarwood in concentrated form was and is extensively used in religious progressions. As a child, it used to give me a headache. So it was but natural that once my love for perfumes developed, I always kept myself away from Oud Notes.

But then François Demachy– the perfumer, chose to play with Oud and roses and produced the masterpiece of Oud Ispahan in LA COLLECTION PRIVÉE of Dior perfumes. And someone introduced me to it very recently. The amount of Oud (Agarwood) was just right. It was intense, yet soft and appealing. I fell for it head down on the first sniff.

Oud Ispahan is bold and soft at the same time. Although at the high end of price tag and blending and technique, It is noble enough to be appreciated by someone who is new to perfumes and yet deep and mysterious enough to the experienced and perfumes fanatics.

I do not know why, but ladies love this perfume on men. It’s deep and addictive and the female audience in my circle just finds Oud ISpahan very seductive, compelling, and dominant. Owing to this reason alone, Oud Ispahan is on my list of Best Dior Colognes for Men as well.


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Summary of Oud Ispahan Review

Oud Ispahan’s top notes are Labdanum, And the Middle or heart notes are rose, patchouli and saffron. And the base notes are Agarwood (Oud), Sandalwood, and Cedar.

Oud Ispahan picture taken during the review

Oud Ispahan is available in 40 ml, 125 ml, and 250 ml bottles. As per my experience, a 250 ml bottle of Oud Ispahan provides the best value for the money.

It is an expensive perfume for so many. A 250 ml bottle costs around $700 on Amazon. A 40 ml Oud Ispahan Bottle would cost around 218 USD in the USA or 189 GBP in the UK. In the USA, 125 ml would cost around 450-500 USD.

As far as the price of Oud Ispahan in Pakistan is concerned, you will get a 40 ml Bottle in the range of 35-38 K, A 125 Ml Bottle would cost you around 45-48K. whereas, a 250 ml Bottle of Oud Ispahan would cost you around 88-95K.

In Pakistan, you can also get the decanted bottle of Oud Ispahan in 10, 15, or 20 ml by joining various Facebook groups. Must check the authenticity of the seller before buying.

What does Oud Ispahan Smells Like – Explained

It has a floral opening to it. Oud comes into play very early. Labdanum coupled with oud gives it a floral and mystic opening. You can sense some rose but it is not distinct.

It has an oriental touch to it. As the perfumes develop the woody notes and Oud comes into play. But the blend is so masterful, that many would not smell oud and rose at all.

That is the magic of perfume. During my review of Oud Ispahan, I felt all the florals and oriental feel. I felt like transported into the past.

But then does this perfume justify its price tag? For some yes it does and others really hate it. But during my detailed review of Oud Ispahan, there were very less people who hated it. It is safe to say that 15% of people in my circle didn’t like the smell. But a whopping 85% of people loved it.

So let’s dive down deep and see if I am able to quantify the above statement.

For me, Oud Ispahan Perfume is Intense, warm, smoky, Luxurious, and calm. It lasts for eternity with good projection and Sillage. If you could afford then you must buy

Imran Satti

A Quick look of Oud Ispahan by Dior

  • CLASSIFICATION – Floral, Woody, Smoky, Musk, Spicy
  • GENDER & AGE – UNISEX, 25+
  • NO OF SPRAYS – 4-5
  • UNIQUENESS – 7.5/10
  • COMPLIMENTS – 8/10
  • LIKEABILITY – 8/10
  • VALUE TO MONEY – 6/10

Theme and Presentation

For understanding the theme, you need to know about Ispahan first.

Ispahan or Esfahan is an ancient city of Persia (present-day Iran), that is on the east and west crossroads. It is located in the center of Iran.

An old city that has been the center of the Persian Empire. Which is famous for its historic castles, Minarets, tiled mosques, covered bridges, and Palaces.

The centuries-old Persian phrase to describe Ispahan is “Esfahān nesf-e-jahān ast”, Meaning, that Ispahan is half of the world. And, as François Demachy, would have wanted it, Dior Oud Ispahan is the rest half.

A round bottle that is presentable but the liquid color is more feminine for my taste. I like the bottle and liquid color of Dior Homme Intense more. Which is more classy and conveys a serious look.

Oud Ispahan Review Brief Summary

Oud Ispahan opens the doors to an ochre-walled Oriental palace filled with captivating fragrances. The smoky trail of smouldering Wood, the softness of floral Water lingering on washed hands. It is the fragrance of this voluptuous atmosphere where odours of Rose, Frankincense and Resin waft in the air. A fragrance as velvety plump as the Roses of the Orient.”

François Demachy, Parfumeur-Créateur Dior

Dior Oud Ispahan is an elegant, posh-feeling perfume that has an up-class feeling to it. The perfume gives you a feeling as if you are in control. I feel a strange sort of confidence and I m not me, once I wear it. It feels as if I am in charge and the leader and I am the king.

A powerful combination of rose and oud, but not actually. It is a gold rose and a black Oud. Gold is the rose and black is the burnt oud.

A strange way to define the scent, but the Labdanum note is upfront, and Oud from the base comes right at the top and slowly blends with Labdanum.

I don’t know why but I smell a wet leathery tone as well, which is sort of addictive. It is as if someone has washed old leather with kerosene. Very raw and very powerful.

But the Oud is not your daily dose of Oud. It is elegant, not very into-your-nose type, seductive and the smell is of burnt oud wood, but not fully burnt. There is life in Oud and a strange depth to it.

You burn Oud wood a little bit and then keep it in half burnt or half dead rose and that is what I smell. Saffron comes into play sometime later. And the dry down is one of the best that it can be. It is all woody and deep. You would want to smell yourself continuously.

The lasting and longevity of Oud Ispahan perfume by Dior is eternal. And believe me, it would not want to leave you if the conditions are just right.

I like wearing this perfume in winter but you can easily pull it off in summer evenings as well due to its floral tones.

Oud Ispahan Notes Review

Top Notes – A captivating Opening

Top note of Oud Ispahan is Labdanum.

But to be true its opening is very raw and captivating where Oud comes into play early on. It’s mystic, mesmerizing, and raw.

The Labdanum note is spot on and immediately coupled with Oud Notes from the base. Some people don’t smell the oud at all in it. But it is there, however it is masterly blended where at times you smell it and other times you will not notice it at all.

Top notes would be distinct for less than an hour but it will be loud and projecting. The bubble that Oud Ispahan perfumes create is noticeable and people would not stop complimenting you.

Middle Notes – Love Grows

The middle notes of Oud Ispahan are Rose, patchouli, and Saffron.

Oud Ispahan middle notes review. A picture showing rose, saffron and patchouli

Here is the phase where the mystery starts. And, Saffron comes into play early on with Labdanum.

Yes, I smell it before oud and Labdanum in this phase. And from there onwards you would smell a rightly burned rose with wet and soggy woods.

Patchouli overtakes rose but not completely. Moreover, This phase is magical and gives me a nostalgic feeling. Like as if I am transported into the past. And It gives a true oriental smell of palaces. Where you feel dominant and strong and seductive.

This phase would last for quite some time. Soon after some time, the woody base notes would start to play their part alongside floral and oud tones.

Base Notes of Oud Ispahan – The Best Dry Down of Dense Perfume

Well as per Christian Dior’s Website, base notes are Ager wood (Oud), Sandal Wood, and Cedar.

Typically it should smell woody in this phase. But Oud is dominant and sandal and cedar give it deep and a little dense character. This phase is typically very intriguing on winter and rainy days, and It gives an earthly feeling.

My Experience With Dior Oud Ispahan

How i describe the smell of Oud Ispahan

At the start, I told you that Dior Oud Ispahan is an instant love or forever hate. But how to justify this statement was a big ask, so I asked my friends for help.

I invited many people to tell me the answer to a simple question. Whether they love the fragrance or not. And the majority in my circle loved it for obvious reasons. But few would instantly hate the rose and oud combo.

But then the real question is how Christian Dior Oud Ispahan actually smell like. Do i smell all the notes and is there some twist in it.

Breakdown of Notes

For me labdanum is upfront. I know this tone from many other fragrances that I have. Bleu De Chanel Eau De Parfum, which I love has this note in the base and you can smell it distinctly in the dry-down phase. But here it is upfront and into your nostrils.

The twist here is that Labdanum is raw and Oud comes right into play. But it is more of a burnt Oud and dry-down roses that round off the opening so well that I had an instant love with Dior Oud Ispahan.

As the perfume develops I could not smell the opening rawness and I am transported into this mature, wet leathery smell coupled with an old cellophane smell that feels so good and so deep. Have you ever smelled an old leather jacket that has been washed in rose water? I smell that. Many don’t describe the rose or oud in that way in my circle.

It is a unisex fragrance mainly because of its floral tones and that is justified. But it has a more masculine tone into it. It feels and projects much better on bare skin onto the pulse points. And let me assure you that girls would fall over heels if a male passes nearby waring Oud Ispahan.

In the dry-down phase, Oud Ispahan transforms into woody and floral tones. And, Sandalwood alongside the Incense smell is pre-dominant. Moreover, Patchouli and saffron round off the woody tones very well and keep the perfume within its limit.

Compliment Factor

Expect loads of compliments from females and envious male eyes. That says it all. As per my experience, Oud Ispahan projects like a beast.

My wife has a crush on this fragrance. But as per her, she loves the scent more when I m wearing it.

In general women like dense and dark perfumes on men. Whereas, Those citrusy and fruity perfumes are for boys and teenagers. This perfume is for mature people.

Dress and Occasions

Wear it on formals because It’s a mature fragrance that should be given due respect. It goes very well with social gatherings.

You can wear it on a date night but not inside a restaurant. Oud Ispahan is more of an open-environment fragrance. I

Too much is too much of Dior Ispahan. This perfume needs moderate sprays of 3-4 at max.

Projection and Longevity

Overall a winter fragrance for me that lasts easily for 10-12 hours. And even more, if you are wearing the right clothes and you are inside.

It remains for a good 5-6 hours on the skin during the summers as well. The Oud DNA has the power of projection and lasting and Dior Oud ISpahan rightly justifies this statement.

Uniqueness and Value for Money

Dior Oud Ispahan is a unique fragrance but it comes at a cost that might not be pocket friendly. A 125 ml bottle would cost around 550 USD whereas 200 ml would cost 700 USD.

But the fragrance is so majestic that if you can afford it then it is a must-buy. And if you are not sure then get a decanted bottle of 10 ml from a reputable source and try it.

What is the price of Oud Ispahan in Pakistan?

Oud Ispahan 125 ml is available in PKR 45000-50000 whereas a 250 ml bottle would cost you around 85000 PKR.

From where to buy Oud Ispahan in Pakistan?

The best place to buy Oud Ispahan in Pakistan is from Al Fatah Stores where the price at this point in time is the lowest. However, a better option is to join Pakistan Fragrances on Facebook. Where decanted bottles and original testers are being sold by reputable group members. Always do the legit check in the group from admin before buying from any individual.

What Oud Ispahan smells like?

A raw Oud and labdanum opening coupled with dried rose. Which transforms into saffron and leathery cedar and sandalwood. A very captivating and mystic perfume that would elevate the mood.

Is Oud Ispahan Unisex perfume?

Yes, Oud ispahan is a unisex perfume. Its deep woody and floral notes are perfect for both genders. It is sweet but not too sweet and yet deep and complex perfume. One of the best spins of Oud that are available.

What age group is suitable for Oud Ispahan?

It is a mature fragrance that is suitable for people upwards of 25 years of age.

How to spot a fake Dior Oud Ispahan Perfume?

1. The Bottle cap should open in half a turn as the magnetic field is broken.
2. Batch code at the bottom of the bottle and outer box should match.
3. Details are written inside of the front sticker on the bottle. Look closely through the juice to see the details.
4. Always buy from authentic stores and retailers. You don’t want to buy this perfume from ebay.
5. CD logo on Bottle cap and Sticker text on bottle should align perfectly each time the cap is secured.

Parting Thoughts on Oud Ispahan By Dior

It is one of my favorite perfumes. Though pricy, the like-ability factor at times outshines the price for me. I like the oriental feeling of the perfume. Oud always has some nostalgic feeling to it. A woody and earthly scent that is very well toned with the floral and leathery smell.

If you buy it, I am sure you won’t regret it. But just to be on the safer side you can order a decanted bottle or maybe go to the nearest shop and try it yourself.

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