24 January 2011

Kiehl's Original Musk perfume oil

I never used to understand those people on Make up Alley who made dramatic statements about how their lives would be ruined should a certain favourite product ever be discontinued - always seemed to be a little over the top. But so help me if Kiehl's Original Musk ever becomes discontinued I may have to lay siege to Kiehl's HQ because I love this so much it has become almost a part of my identity - it is MY scent!

I actually didn't like the smell when I first tried it in Liberty a couple of years ago.. I detected something vaguely potentially headache-inducing in it, the same thing that prevents me from using Hei Poa monoi oil even though I love the idea of it and the pretty bottle! However this only seems to last a few seconds (in fact I don't even notice it now) before the oil 'dries down' to a beautiful powdery musky floral sweet something or other. I wish I knew how to describe scents in more eloquent terms but I can't - all I know is that I love this scent and it seems to work well with my skin.

(I will however copy some of the ingredients from the Kiehl's website for those who are curious):

Our special Musk “recipe” begins with an initial creamy, fresh citrus burst of Bergamot Nectar and Orange Blossom...followed by a soft floral bouquet of Rose, Lily, Ylang-Ylang and Neroli. Finally, Original Musk Eau de Toilette dries down to a warm, sensual Oriental finish of Tonka Bean, White Patchouli and, of course, Musk...the soul of this distinctively modern scent...

Can't say I get anything citrusy - it smells much softer somehow than that but hey - them's the ingredients!

Original Musk is the only scent I've ever worn that multiple people have commented on. Not in an 'ooh, what perfume are you wearing?' way - it's not that obvious. More likely what will happen is that someone in close proximity will start sniffing the air with a slightly puzzled air, and enquire as to what that lovely smell is (cue smug flourish of wrist).

I love how the oil melts into the skin, and the scent lingers. Something about it is just more sensual than spraying some harsh sneeze-inducing perfume on your skin. I wear this year round; it seems as appropriate on sultry summer days as it does on cold winter ones.

I also adore the glass vial, pictured above (although the label has faded away somewhat). Unfortunately Kiehl's has changed the packaging of it's perfume oils to a roller ball format (and they're now called Essence Oils) which I am a bit dischuffed about. Something about upturning the small vial, and how it sits on my dressing table like a secret potion, I love. I haven't run out of my vial yet and when I do I will purchase the roller ball, but I'm even wondering if I can somehow transfer said rollerball contents to my vial - that's how much I love it.

The oils come in three other scents - Grapefruit, Vanilla, and Coriander. If the vanilla one is anything like Kiehl's discontinued vanilla body lotion which I absolutely loved I would certainly love to try that, and I like the sound of the coriander one too. I think the oils used to come in Cucumber too as I purchased a cucumber roller ball off eBay a while ago. However it smelled so unpleasant and artificial I threw it away - maybe a dud or had just gone off or something. Anyway I digress...

Have you tried any of the Kiehl's perfume oils, or are there any other musky oils you'd recommend?

Kiehl's Essence Oils with roller ball applicator retail at £21 for 7ml.


  1. I haven't tried the oil, but I've worn the musk lotion for years and I absolutly LOVE it!!!

  2. ooh! i love their lotions might have to try that. and you should definitely try the oil! x

  3. I just went to Kiehl's and bought myself two vials of their rollerball oils - grapefruit and musk - the combination of which smells divine. It came with a hefty price tag especially considering its size, but it was worth it, since THEY ARE DISCONTINUING IT!!! So if anyone is even remotely enamored with these oils, i suggest they run to their nearest shop and grab all they can...well at least if you live in montreal! The salesgirl told me Kiehl's was going to discontinue it altogether due to poor demand for the product, but said the original musk will still be sold.
    It goes without saying that the grapefruit smells amazing with or without the musk...i remember years ago, cutting into a grapefruit and falling absolutely in love with the smell...i've seen been on the hunt for a perfume that replicates the smell and this oil is as close as it gets for me, without being too fruity at all.
    As for the musk, oddly what attracted me to it (besides the nearly unanimous positive reviews from kiehl's fans) was how it made me feel. I certainly wasn't bowled over by it initially, because indeed there was something animal, sexually charged about it and it made me feel dirty in a gratifying way, and weird to say, ashamed. But the smell quickly warms into comfort, like being skin on skin with someone you love. There is something very human about this scent, which explains its wide appeal. I've never encountered a perfume that evoked so much complexity of feeling and thought!

  4. i can't believe they are discontinuing them! yes the musk is a very comforting yet complex scent. i'm very upset!!!