Matiere Premiere – Santal Austral

Matiere Premiere, or ‘Raw Materials’ to you and I, is a collection of fragrances released in 2019 by esteemed perfumer Aurelien Guichard. Born in the fragrance capital of Grasse in France, Aurelien was immersed in the world of perfumery from a young age. His parents owned a business which grew a selection of flowers used by major perfumers around the globe. He immersed himself further into his passion by training at Givaudan, an acclaimed school of perfumery which opened its doors in 1946. Aurelien went on to create many fragrances for several luxury brands around the world before creating his own house in 2019.

Aurelien Guichard – Photo by Matiere Premiere

As the name suggests, Matiere Premiere (Raw Materials) is a line of seven genderless fragrances that have been produced using the finest ingredients that nature has to offer. These natural raw materials have been expertly combined to create an exceptional range of scents all of which have no synthetic colouring agents. The presentation of each bottle is both simplistic and contemporary, allowing you to view these stunning natural hues in all their glory.

Photo by Matiere Premiere

As my nose wandered through the range of Matiere Premiere fragrances, each had their own intriguing and alluring aspects. One in particular caught my attention and is called Santal Austral. The fragrance is described by Aurelien as a sensual white wood and from the moment it touches your skin, its these sensual accords that make Santal Austral highly addictive.  

On the initial spray, my first reaction was to smile as the smooth aroma caressed my senses. For some reason, a sense of contentment ensued as its soothing notes generated such a positive response in me. The first thing I truly noticed was the Iris absolute, it covered my skin in a blanket of softness, exuding its powdery, sweet and floral accords. I have never experienced Iris like this before, Aurelien has managed to capture its hedonistic qualities so beautifully. This stunning scent is only enhanced by the delicate aroma of almond milk adding a subtle creaminess that intertwines its way through this seductive elixir.

The main ingredient is a breathtaking Sandalwood from Australia, which has been amplified in the most elegant way, showcasing the very best characteristics of one of my favourite fragrance ingredients. This pure and exquisite Sandalwood note projects greatly from the skin and takes that sultry and creamy aura to the next level. It wraps around your skin like a warm scarf on a cold winters day, imparting a comforting and nourishing vibe. The Sandalwood transmits a complex long-lasting aroma, gently floating between a sensual redolence of woody, earthy and delicately spicy notes.

Like a perfect gift, the whole package is tied in a velvety warm bow of Benzoin oil from Loas and Tonka Bean from Venezuela. This adds a further depth and a degree of richness, all the while that delicious sandalwood continues to reverberate to the surface. The dry down takes on a sweet sumptuous quality which stays on the skin for quite a while and I was very impressed with the longevity and the way it emitted from the skin throughout the day.

This fragrance really has the power to draw you in from the first moment you smell it. It exudes several tantalising qualities, so much so that I almost couldn’t stop smelling my wrists when wearing it. Aurelien has managed to encapsulate something really special here, one that I am so thankful to have experienced.

Photo by Matiere Premiere

I now I have my eyes on their newest release, Radical Rose, and having their own rose farm in Grasse, I expect that this next creation will exceed expectations in more ways than one.

Presentation 4/5
Sillage 4/5
Projection 4/5
Longevity 4/5
Fragrance Concentration: Eau de Parfum
Price: £190 for 100ml (Available from Harrods)

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