We’ve been at the beach this past week, and I took with me a few beach-appropriate fragrances. The one I wore most was Amouage’s Beach Hut Woman. It wasn’t exactly that I loved it so much, though I do like it a lot. I was trying to figure it out. The company website lists the same notes as Fragrantica: top notes of a mineral accord and bergamot; middle notes of a “driftwood” accord and a molecule called “lisylang”; base notes of patchouli and cashmeran.
First, what is “lisylang”? Dawn Spencer Hurtwitz to the rescue: her website describes it as “a new botanical isolate accord from France derived from ylang ylang flowers that imparts a green floral lily note with the exotic sweetness of ylang ylang itself.” Nice! When I first spray Beach Hut Woman, the bergamot and the mineral accord are immediately apparent, together. I smell the “driftwood accord” quite quickly after that; to me, it smells a lot like vetiver, which suggests dried grass, which makes sense for a beach hut.
I’m not normally interested in beach huts, unless they come with massage tables and a masseuse, but I’ve found an amazing”eco-resort” in Thailand called “Keemala” with several options that will do nicely, thank you!
Since we won’t be able to travel abroad for a while, I’ll just fantasize about an unlimited travel budget and all the time in the world.
Beach Hut Woman is described as a woody aquatic, and I would agree. The floral heart note that is supposed to appear never fully does on my skin. If you are seeking a tropical fruity floral, that is not Beach Hut Woman. The bergamot top note with the opening mineral accord evokes sun and saltwater on hot sand, and I like this phase a lot. As the heart phase develops, the driftwood accord takes over, with the vetiver note I described above. This is not a damp woody accord, it is very dry and it works well with the salty mineral accord. Several commenters on Fragrantica perceived a smell like rattan or straw, and I can see that, given the suggested beach context.
The patchouli insinuates itself after about an hour on my skin and becomes more dominant as the fragrance dries down, but it’s a clean patchouli note, quite herbal and also quite dry. The whole development of Beach Hut Woman is completely unisex, I find; and it would make an appealing summer scent for many men as well as women. Some commenters thought it evoked a winter beach more than a summer one, but not to my nose. I often associate bergamot with sunshine and summer, so to me, this is a summertime scent.
It is also quite subtle, and fully appropriate to wear on a beach vacation, sipping cocktails or other beverages outside on a wooden deck overlooking the lapping, salty waves. It lasts a few hours on my skin, probably four hours at most. It would be interesting to wear it in combination with a more floral-scented sun lotion and see what happens — I suspect they would complement each other very well, and the lotion might help Beach Hut Woman last longer on skin.
Several readers suggested their own preferred beach fragrances last Friday, in the “Perfume Chat Room.” Has anyone here tried Beach Hut Woman? Thoughts?