Serge Lutens is a Paris-based niche perfume line with an extraordinarily devoted cult following.
The man behind the brand, Serge Lutens, was born in Lille in 1942. In the early 1960s, he went to Paris and started working as a makeup artist and creative stylist; in the late 1960s he was responsible for establishing the cosmetics line for Christian Dior. He became the creative director at Shiseido in 1980, and released his first perfume for Shiseido in 1981: the now legendary Nombre Noir.
The Salons du Palais Royal Shiseido, described by Lutens as "more of a refined salon for perfumes than a boutique", opened in Paris in 1992, shortly after the release of Shiseido Féminité du Bois.1 Subsequent releases appear under the name Serge Lutens instead of Shiseido. In the late 1990s, Lutens stopped working on makeup entirely in order to devote his time to perfumery, although in 2005 he launched a color cosmetics line under his own name.
In 2007, Serge Lutens was named Commandeur dans l’Ordre des Arts et Lettres by the French Ministry of Culture.
In 2015, Shiseido purchased the Serge Lutens trademark.
Reviews for older Serge Lutens fragrances include Ambre Sultan (1993), Iris Silver Mist (1994), Cuir Mauresque (1996), Un Lys (1997), Rahat Loukoum (1998), Muscs Koublai Khan (1998), Tubereuse Criminelle (1999), Douce Amere (2000), Sa Majeste la Rose (2000), A La Nuit (2000), Datura Noir (2001), Chergui (2001), Santal de Mysore (2001), Santal Blanc (2001), Fumerie Turque (2003), Chêne (2004), Fleurs de Citronnier (2004), Daim Blond (2004).
Recent fragrance releases from Serge Lutens
2019: L'Eau d'Armoise
Where to buy
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See the interior of the Salons du Palais Royal in this video.
1. In 2009, Shiseido Féminité du Bois was relaunched as Serge Lutens Féminité du Bois.