Olympéa by Paco Rabanne is an Amber Floral fragrance for women launched in 2015 as an Eau de Parfum. Olympéa was the creation of Loc Dong, Anne Flipo, and Dominique Ropion.
It’s part of the Olympéa collection. It’s the original scent in the Olympéa collection and has since inspired a range of flankers, given the scent’s popularity.
This Amber Floral scent has the following keynotes: Green Mandarin, Jasmine, Vanilla, Salt, and Cashmere Wood.
|Concentration||Eau de Parfum|
|Scent Family||Amber Floral|
It’s been a while since I tried Olympéa, so I got a sample from my local stockists. This is my thoughts on Paco Rabanne’s Olympéa.
What does Olympéa, by Paco Rabanne smell like?
Olympéa at first smells like Jasmine and citrus, but as it dries down, you pick up the salt and the vanilla.
Everything about this fragrance evokes the idea of a strong, modern Greek goddess. This is very evident based on the beautiful design of the bottle. It’s said to be inspired by the Greek Laurel wreath and was designed by Marc Ange. To me, it has a little bit of femme fatale vibes. It’s sweet but in a naughty sweet way.
It reminds me a lot of Changing Constance by Penhaligon, although Changing Constance has a bit more of a grown-up profile and a salty caramel note.
|Top Notes||Water Jasmine, Green Mandarin and Ginger flower|
|Middle Notes||Vanilla and Salt|
|Base Notes||Ambergris, Cashmere Wood and Sandalwood|
The moment I spray it, I pick up Green Mandarin. The Green Mandarin gives it that little bit of a citrus smell, but it’s mostly the Jasmine that comes through. This sweet, almost a little synthetic Jasmine veers dangerously close to Mugler’s Alien, but it’s still lighter and sweeter than Alien.
After about 15 minutes, it starts to dry down into the vanilla and the salt. The vanilla definitely has a sweetness to it, but the salt prevents the vanilla from becoming a gourmand vanilla. The Cashmere Wood and Sandalwood also soften the scent a bit.
The salt gives it a bit of an oriental vibe. It’s not a beachy scent despite the salt, and it’s warm and sensual. I’ve heard people describe this as a tropical beachy perfume, but I don’t get this vibe at all. The warm and spicy notes really shine in the base.
After about 11 hours, I could still smell the scent on myself, although it wasn’t as strong anymore at this point. It did get me a compliment, so it’s definitely a scent people will notice.
Sillage & Projection
The sillage isn’t a room filler, but people within a few feet of you will definitely pick up the scent. I think if you wear this in the summer, it could be a bit overwhelming if it’s really super hot out. The projection is also pretty good, and people will notice it, so be careful with over-spraying.
Longevity & Versatility
Olympéa is a pretty long-lasting perfume, and it lasted a good 11 hours on me. It wasn’t as strong toward the end, but I could still smell it.
I find it quite strong, so I don’t see it as an everyday perfume that I’d wear to the office, for example. It feels more appropriate for a night out. But one of my friends wears it as her signature scent.
While I can absolutely see this as a perfume for more than one season, I’d say it would be best suited for the fall. Again, I’d be weary of it on the hottest days of the summer. But overall, the fact that this isn’t a beachy perfume means it lends itself well to all seasons.
The powderiness and the oriental notes in this scent make me think that someone who prefers a more mature scent will like this. If you like vanilla and oriental notes, it’s absolutely worth a try.
I wouldn’t recommend this one as a blind buy, though. It’s one of those scents that people differ widely on. For me, it’s the perfect fall scent for a night out. My friend swears it’s a summery scent you can wear to the office and everywhere. Although I know opinions are very subjective, I feel with the scent, you either love it or hate it, so try it first, get a sample and form your own opinion before investing in a bottle.