With Woody Mood, perfumer Betrand Duchaufour reaches inside our head and pulls out all our fantasies of fall ? crisp air, sweet woodsmoke, the crackle of leaves hitting the bonfire ? compiling them into an autumnal essay that satisfies down to the bone. The inspiration for Woody Mood is Roger Steffens’s 1973 photo of a woman wandering alone in a California redwood forest, shafts of sunlight piercing the gloom. Since Duchaufour is the father of perfume history’s most influential woody-incense scents (Timbuktu, Avignon, etc.), it makes perfect sense that he was the perfumer chosen to translate the photo into fragrance form.
Woody Mood opens with a buzz of whiskey-soaked wood, rich and wet, which quickly dries out into a ribbon of pure woodsmoke winding lazily through chill air. Aromatic sage and spikenard give the woods a masculine swagger, but we see this scent working beautifully on a woman’s skin too. From the radiant blaze of woods emerges a core of rubbery black tea, cacao, and styrax, darkening the scent to the point where we’re no longer sure whether we’re smelling wood or leather. The contrast in Woody Mood between the peppery brightness of the woods and the darkness of burnt resin is a perfect mirror of the play of light on dark in the photo. Like Au Coeur du Desert, Woody Mood’s genius lies in conjuring up a vivid chiaroscuro from a restricted palette of earth tones. If you love the radiant smokiness of woodsmoke without the additional weight of amber or cream, then this scent by Olfactive Studio is a no-brainer.