Serge Lutens Muscs Koublai Khan is the animalic musk that all other musks are just pretenders to. It generates a lot of mixed opinion. The cumin on the open, if you aren't prepared for it, can smell pretty gamey, resembling more of an armpit following a three-hour rugby match. But hang on! That doesn't last that long. Once it passes, you will start getting this soft, warmed skin scent.
As I said when I smelled it the first time "It is the smell of humanity. Not the idealistic or beautiful part of it only, but the real part, the well-worn place of skin and sweat and memory and emotion. I can do nothing but bury my nose in this scent and breathe in all the misery and joy of being human." (from Perfume Posse)
Reviews of Serge Lutens Muscs Koublai Khan from noses that may or may not sniff as your nose does.
Kafkaesque - "Catherine the Great on horseback, riding to meet a young Cossack officer at a secret rendezvous where the lovers will tangle under Siberian furs before a roaring fireplace. Henry VIII seducing Anne Boleyn on more piles of fur on a winter’s night at a hunting lodge. The Sun King, Louis XIV, and one of his mistresses at Versailles, a palace redolent with the smell of the human body covered by powdered roses. The memory of riding my horse on a warm day, and the subtle aroma of his lightly musked, heated, muscular neck, mixed with the smell of the leather harness and saddle. Those tangled thoughts and images are what cross my mind when I wear Muscs Koublaï Khan from Serge Lutens."
Bois de Jasmin - "Muscs Koublaï Khan keeps its wearer in suspense from the very start when the sweet ambery chord begins to soften and reveal the smoky woods, musk and leather. A vivid flourish of jasmine and rose flashes across the darkness of the composition, serving as a caressing touch after the roughness of balsamic and animalic notes. The apricot like shimmer of jasmine soon fades away, but the crimson red rose petals remain behind, twisting around the smoky incense and warm leather accents. My favorite part of Muscs Koublaï Khan is its drydown. If the earlier stages of the composition suggest a decadent fantasy of salty skin and cognac scented kisses, the later story is even more beguiling. The rooty, green musk and earthy patchouli combine to create an impression of having falling asleep on the beach– the scents of hot sand and seaweed blend with those of your wet hair and sun warmed skin to create your own unique and intimate fragrance. And perhaps, you still remember that kiss…"
Basenotes - "This is devilishly divine! :) I ordered a sample and knew I'd want to buy a full bottle at some point. True to its reputation, Muscs Koublai Khan is animalic as all get-out - but in a knowing, sophisticated way, neither crude nor overweaning. It's not even edgy: it's elegant, but just barely. This masterfully blended symphony of musk, civet and floral notes is just lovely."
Perfume Posse - "It is not the scent of horses or sex or sweat. It is the smell of humanity. Not the idealistic or beautiful part of it only, but the real part, the well-worn place of skin and sweat and memory and emotion. I can do nothing but bury my nose in this scent and breathe in all the misery and joy of being human. I can’t be without this scent in my life because every time I forget what it is to be flawed and real, I can smell this and remember."
Parfumo - "If you plan on blind-buying Muscs Koublai Khan, I don't know what to tell you. It is legendary, experts say it is even a reference musk scent. I agree it is absolutely wonderful. Its fans however differ on the perception of musk being clean or dirty. When I had just a small dab sample, I thought it was more on the clean and soapy side. Today I had five full sprays and I do feel like a Mongolian savage:) but the scent is beautiful at the same time. I already got my first anti-compliment today, was told that I really stink:)) Whatever you do, just don't believe fragrantica, it doesn't smell anything like Kiehls Original Musk."
from perfumesmellinthings - "As far as I am concerned, there is none of that imperial splendor in Muscs Koublai Khan, no enlightened interest in arts and science; magnificent palaces full of priceless objects don’t rise before my eyes when I smell this fragrance. Serge Lutens creation is all about Koublai the warrior, a soldier among his soldiers, a conqueror prowling the great plains. Muscs Koublai Khan is raw, dirty and sensual."
Grain de Musc
||Serge Lutens Muscs Koublai Khan
||Cumin, musk, soft patchouli, vanilla, labdanum, rose, "ripe peach" scent and the aroma of brewed black tea
|Country of Origin