Indult Tihota: Delicious Vanilla, Cookies & Cream

Source: Indult website

Source: Indult website

Tihota is one of those perfumes that comes with a legend: “The Holy Grail of vanilla fragrances!” or “The best vanilla ever!” It’s always the first name that comes up when people talk about vanilla fragrances, and people rave about it with the sort of adoration usually reserved for the great olfactory masterpieces.

I was highly skeptical. I’ve found few things with that sort of hype to really measure up. More to the point, I’m not really a gourmand lover and I have a low threshold for sweetness, so my experiences with other beloved fragrances in the genre haven’t been very successful. At best, I was unenthused. At worst, I was utterly traumatized by tidal waves of burnt saccharine sweetness that left me with an urgent need to scrub. Still, I’ve been on a perpetual hunt for the perfect vanilla scent, so I ordered a sample of Indult‘s famous creation, and kept my expectations low.

Colour me shocked: Tihota is excellent! Positively delicious, in fact, and it only becomes more appealing with each wearing. I don’t think I would describe it as the “perfect” vanilla, particularly in light of its price, but I completely understand the fuss now, and think that Tihota deserves a good chunk of its acclaim.

Source: Indult website.

Source: Indult website.

Indult is a French perfume house that released Tihota and two other fragrances back in 2006. Each one was created by the famed Francis Kurkdjian, but released in limited fashion with only 999 bottles. Several years later, something seems to have happened to Indult, and the company died away. Its perfumes were discontinued, much to the sorrow of Tihota lovers, and Tihota itself became one of those cult legends. Then, in 2013, Indult was revived under new ownership, and its original fragrances were re-issued. CaFleureBon quoted Franco Wright of Luckyscent and, more importantly, Mr. Kurkdjian himself as saying that all the scents were unchanged, and that the same formula had been used. In short, not only was Tihota back, but 2013 Tihota was the same as 2006 Tihota.

On its website, Indult describes Tihota (and the meaning of its name) as follows:



« Sugar » in Polynesian

When the skin is « sugar » under the Polynesian sun: it’s an exotic marriage of muscs in fusion and infusion with the sensual vanilla pods.

A vaporous wake but maintained, like the blow of a warm breeze that wraps the body and invades the atmosphere in a singular way.

Tihota is an olfactive and magical trip, the incandescence of the sunrise that embraces the far horizon.

Vanilla beans from Tahiti. Source:

Vanilla beans from Tahiti. Source:

According to First in Fragrance, the notes are: vanilla, musk, and tonka bean. Given Tihota’s name and description, the implication is that Francis Kurkdjian used Tahitian (Polynesian) vanilla, so I did some digging to see how their beans may differ from the Mexican and Madagascan variety. On a blog called, I read something which you may find interesting, and which actually has some bearing on how Tihota smells on my skin:

Vanilla actually grows from an orchid plant. The Tahitian variety (pictured below) is a rare species, making it highly desirable and often more expensive than other types of vanilla. It is low in actual vanillin content, but higher in a certain flavor compound that gives it that fragrant, rich flavor that many connoisseurs and gourmet chefs have come to know and love.

Vanilla Orchid Plant via

Vanilla Orchid Plant via

Another thing that makes Tahitian vanilla so unique is the fact that it’s indehiscent, meaning the pods do not spontaneously open as they ripen. For this reason, they can be harvested when ripe, unlike other vanilla plants that must be harvested prematurely. It’s the same difference between a yellow banana and one that is harvested when it’s still green.

Photo & Source: (Direct website link embedded within.)

Photo & Source: (Direct website link embedded within.)

Tihota opens on my skin with candied vanilla that is lightly flecked with a clean musk. The vanilla has a sugary sweetness, but also a lovely creaminess that is buttery smooth and silky soft. There is a flour-like undertone that reminds me of cake batter, along with a rich egg yolk nuance like that in expensive French Vanilla bean ice-creams. I’m a huge fan of both sorts of vanilla sub-texts, and find them far preferable to the usual caramelized, ultra-sugary creme brulée variety that is so common in vanilla fragrances. Yes, Tihota has a sugariness as well, most noticeably in its first 60-90 minutes, but it’s pitched at a much softer degree than the high-decibel shrieks in such over-the-top gourmands as Profumum‘s Vanitas, 4160 Tuesday‘s The Dark Heart of Old Havana, or Shay & Blue‘s Salt Caramel.

Photo by Hutch Meyer on Flickr. (Direct website link embedded within.)

Photo by Hutch Meyer on Flickr. (Direct website link embedded within.)

As for the musk, it may be clean in nature, but only slightly so. More importantly, it’s never cheap-smelling, excessive, overly fresh; or painfully sharp. Frankly, it’s a bit of a surprise. A number of Francis Kurkdjian’s scents for his own MFK line have had a ridiculous amount of white musk that I’ve found to be inordinately unpleasant. Some smell synthetic as hell, reminding me of hairspray or shampoo; others have been so sharp that they triggered a headache and made the scent a scrubber. For Indult, Mr. Kurkdjian seems to have dialed it down significantly, because the musk never intrudes upon or overshadows the vanilla.



The first 90-minutes of Tihota is appealing, but not my favorite part of the scent. There is this strange back-and-forth which occurs with the sweetness levels. Every single time that I thought the perfume had exceeded my threshold for sugariness, it pulls back and another wave of silky smooth, eggy, vanilla cream washes over me. Luckyscent’s description for Tihota references vanilla bean pods that have been dipped in honeyed water and then left to steep. I think Tihota is sweeter than that in its first stage, because there is a definite crystallized, raw quality to the notes that feels like sugar cane. Yet, somehow, by magic or some perfumer’s feat, Tihota’s creaminess really seems to cut through much of it.

The result really smells like a warm, cozy house where someone just baked. Swirls of snickerdoodle cookies, perhaps, but also freshly made vanilla cake hot out of the oven. And that’s the part that is most appealing to me. I absolutely love the sense of warm flour, butter, and eggs that lurks in the base, as well as the extremely delicate wisp of floralcy that weaves quietly through the top.



The site referenced both the vanilla orchid flower, and how their beans are genetically unique in terms of being harvestable when ripe, instead of being green. I think both things factor into why Tihota is so delicious. The perfume really has the feel of velvety, creamy white petals from a vanilla orchid plant, even if it’s subtle and sometimes merely an evocative wisp dancing at the furthest edges.

Creme Anglaise. Source:

Creme Anglaise. Source:

At the same time, the heart and soul of Tihota is centered on the very flavourful richness of ripened beans. The Tahiti site may say that they are technically low in vanillin content, but somehow this is a better sort of vanilla. It’s less obvious, and not quite so much like you poured a bottle of extrait on yourself. What is so impressive though is the balance in the various sub-texts. Instead of dark Bourbon booziness, there is frothy, airy creaminess. It’s eggy and, yet, it’s not quite so. It’s custard-y, but it’s not unctuous or heavy. It’s buttery, but it’s nothing like the butter in Mona di Orio‘s Vanille (which made me think of what movie theatres pour over popcorn). It’s richer than a creme anglaise sauce, but it never verges on creme brulée with its burnt, caramelized crust.



The best way I can describe the overall bouquet is the simultaneous twin aromas of uncooked, slightly flour-y, vanilla cake batter and the actual cake taken hot out of the oven, mixed with a handful of sugar cookies, and then covered with a few velvety petals from an orchid plant. It’s really a delectable, cozy, utterly comforting scent, even in the first 90 minutes when Tihota keeps tipping over my sweetness limits before suddenly pulling back.

The whole thing is a very soft bouquet that seems to envelop you like the thinnest, most translucent silk. Using 3 good smears equal to 2 sprays from an actual bottle, Tihota opened with roughly 3 inches of sillage at first. That number soon dropped: the perfume projected about 2.5 inches after 15 minutes, 1.5 at the end of the first hour, and just below an inch at the 1.75 hour mark. Throughout it all, Tihota was very light in weight and body, too much so for my personal tastes to be honest. I was a little saddened by the gauzy sheerness, and I would have liked more sillage, but I did appreciate how little curlicues of vanilla sugar cookies occasionally wafted up at me during the first hour when I moved.



Tihota’s true beauty shone best for me after 90 minutes and as the 2nd hour drew to a close. Up to then, the sweetness had occasionally given me pause, especially at one moment around the 40 minute-mark, but everything changes during Tihota’s second stage. The sweetness is finally at an even balance, roughly a 5 on a scale of 1 to 10, instead of the 7.5 or 8 that it had occasionally flirted with earlier. At the same time, the creaminess in the base floods over, coating the vanilla with even greater silkiness. The musk has changed as well, and now feels warm in a way that evokes the image of sun-kissed skin sprinkled with orchid petals, vanilla, and gentle cleanness. Tiny, ghostly flickers of something boozy and vaguely smoky dart about, but they are as small as fireflies in a big sky filled with fluffy vanilla clouds.

The whole thing feels a soft and inviting as a pile of goose-down. Yet, for all the pillowy gentleness, there is a surprisingly languid effect to the scent, perhaps because Tihota really is so indulgent and creamy. It’s like having vanilla cake and cookies coat your skin with the smoothness of clotted cream. You’re nestled within some warm haze that is the epitome of all the sweet, positive things in life, where everything is safe, innocent, and with the happiness of “raindrops on roses, and whiskers on kittens.” The difference is that these raindrops are liquid vanilla on orchid petals, and the kitten smells of sugared cream musk. I think the best way I can convey Tihota’s overall feel is with this picture:



There isn’t much more to Tihota. It’s a simple soliflore that doesn’t change at all from this point forth. Tihota turns into a pure skin scent 3.25 hours into its development, and finally dies away as a wisp of vanilla roughly 7.5 hours from the start. I would obviously have wished for more time with it, as well as greater sillage and heavier body, but my skin is wonky. Other people have reported experience great longevity with Tihota. Yet, even with my lower numbers, if there is one gourmand that is worth continually sniffing your wrists up close, it would Tihota for me.

Funnily enough, Tihota seems to get better with each wearing. I thoroughly enjoyed it the first time I wore the scent. The second time, I started thinking about getting a decant. The third time, I flirted with the crazy idea of buying a full bottle. For someone like me, a person who doesn’t actually wear gourmand fragrances and has never bought a single one in my life, that is a crazy idea, indeed. The main reason why is because Tihota is enormously expensive for a simple, linear vanilla soliflore with two notes or three at best. A small 50 ml bottle costs $200 or €160. I blinked at that, I really did. I double-checked the bottle size on Luckyscent again, and then gulped. Profumum Roma may charge $240 for its gourmands, but they’re pure parfum extraits that come in a 100 ml bottle, have massive body, opaque richness, great longevity and frequently big sillage as well.

"Ulysses and the Sirens," by Herbert James Draper, (1909). Source: Wikipedia

“Ulysses and the Sirens,” by Herbert James Draper, (1909). Source: Wikipedia

Tihota is far from all that and, yet, for more moments than I care to admit, I considered buying a full bottle. I won’t, simply because I can’t mentally justify it to myself, but, dammit, the fragrance calls my name like one of the sirens in The Odyssey. I don’t quite know what has happened to me. I don’t like gourmands or sheer scents; the thought of spending $200 on mere vanilla (!!) in a small 50 ml bottle is madness; and, yet, I’ve considered it nonetheless. I think that says something about Tihota.

There are numerous reviews for Tihota across the blogosphere, and I don’t recall reading a single negative one. On Fragrantica, the vast majority of comments are positive, though people frequently struggle over Tihota’s price. On Luckyscent, the positive reviews exceed all others by a landslide; there are 48 Five Star Reviews, followed by 7 Four Star ones, 11 Three Star ones, and so on. That’s a huge gap, and it’s worth noting that most of the middling reviews seem to be driven primarily by the price. It’s quite understandable. People expected a lot when a mere vanilla costs $200.

People are a bit more critical on MakeupAlley, but not by much. One woman wrote, “Whenever I take a whiff of this, it’s like I can hear angels singing.” As with everywhere, Tihota’s price is always the main problem, and usually not the actual nature of the vanilla or how the perfume smells. There are a few, rare exceptions, but they are a tiny minority.



What I was happy to see on Fragrantica was that a lot of commentators thought Tihota had great longevity and big sillage, saying things like “it LASTS and lasts,” so you may fare much better than I did with my wonky skin. And, like me, a number of people appreciated Tihota more with each wearing; even those who were “initially disappointed” by the scent and didn’t find it to blow their world suddenly changed their mind after giving it a few tries. One such woman ended up calling Tihota “radiant,” adding “It’s like a comfy blanket and the best of dreams. It’s a loving hug. It’s bottled joy.”

Victoria's Secret Vanilla Lace. Photo:

Victoria’s Secret Vanilla Lace. Photo:

As a side note, I’ve seen a number of fragrances mentioned as “dupes” for Tihota, though almost everyone agrees that they don’t have the same quality. The name that comes up repeatedly on Fragrantica is Victoria’s Secret Vanilla Lace. It’s a fragrance mist (so not an actual eau de parfum) that apparently costs $14 and is allegedly “identical,” though some people are honest enough to admit that it smells synthetic in nature. On MakeupAlley, the reference is to Lignes St. Barth, and I think it’s their Vanille West Indies perfume that is being discussed. A handful of people also mention Lavanila‘s Pure Vanille which apparently costs about $65.

Ligne St. Barth Vanille West Indies via Fragrantica.

Ligne St. Barth Vanille West Indies via Fragrantica.

I haven’t tried any of these, so I can’t comment. All I can say is that I didn’t think Tihota smelt cheap, synthetic, plastic-y, cloying, or sharp. Those are things that have been a problem for me even with some expensive niche vanillas, so I wouldn’t hold my breath that a $14 “mist” from Victoria’s Secret would be any different. You get what you pay for. As for Lignes St. Barth’s Vanille West Indies, it costs $165 on Beautyhabit for a similar 50 ml size, so you’re not saving all that much less. Plus, I’ve read that it has a profound caramel note, along with much more of a floral bent. It doesn’t sounds particularly close to Tihota to me.

In short, if you’ve been looking for the perfect vanilla fragrance and haven’t tried Tihota yet, I strongly recommend getting a sample. If you have sweetness issues of your own, keep in mind that I experienced fluctuating levels during the first 90-minutes, and that it gets much better afterwards, so you may want to be patient. I would also suggest trying Tihota a few times. A number of people have said that their initial ambivalence or disappointment turned into love after several wearings, and I myself found that Tihota became more appealing each time. I have no solution as to the problem of the price, though. You’re on your own there. If you discover a magical Tihota-dispensing tree, let me know. I would gladly wear Tihota myself, but I’m a long way away from spending $200 on vanilla.

Cost & Availability: Tihota is an eau de parfum that only comes in a 50 ml bottle, and costs $200 or €160. In the U.S.: Tihota is exclusive to Luckyscent. Outside the U.S.: In Canada, you can find Tihota at The Perfume Shoppe. In Europe, Tihota is available directly from Indult, but I don’t know if they ship worldwide. Tihota is also available from Germany’s First in Fragrance, Paris’ Jovoy, and Italy’s Sacro Cuore. In Russia, I think it’s sold at Ry7. Samples: Several of the sites listed above sell samples. I got mine from Surrender to Chance where prices start at $5.99 for a 1/2 ml vial.

48 thoughts on “Indult Tihota: Delicious Vanilla, Cookies & Cream

  1. I am so delighted that you have found a vanilla that works for you. Tihota is a rare beauty. I have the same issue with the price that everyone else has, but all the same I will eventually buy a bottle. It is so very pure and delicious.

    • It’s definitely pure vanilla and nothing BUT, which is part of why the price is such a problem for me. I can’t seem to mentally justify $200 for such a basic scent! And decants aren’t the solution, either, because 25 ml for $100 seems equally ridiculous. Yet, it keeps calling my name, dammit. lol. I have the feeling that I will cave in eventually, just like you. 🙂 It may take me a long time to get to that point, though.

      • Yes, it’s just vanilla, but I haven’t found another pure vanilla that smells rich, smooth, and nonsynthetic. I have tried two of the three “duplicates” and thought that they were awful.

          • The Lavanila Pure Vanille and the Vanilla Lace. Harshly synthetic and not even playing the same game as Tihota, in my view. Trying a lot of “pure” vanillas forced me to realize how hard it really is to do a pure vanilla that functions well enough as a perfume and smells natural. So many of the others are like the waft from an industrialized bakery. Nice enough if you like that sort of thing, rather like grocery-store sugar cookies, but not what I seek in a pure vanilla.

          • Thank you for the added details, my dear. It definitely gives me a better idea of the sort of vanilla we’re talking about. I’d actually looked up a few Lavanila fragrances on eBay, but I’ve had such bad experiences with blind buys for regular scents that I was gun-shy about trying out a gourmand one, sight unseen. At least, not if it cost more than a pittance.

            I did end up actually blind-buying a vanilla from La Maison de La Vanille the other day, mostly because it was a really good deal and it did NOT sound like a pure vanilla from the descriptions of it on Luckyscent and elsewhere. It’s supposed to be an aromatic, woodsy vanilla, so my curiosity was piqued and the price moderate enough to be worth it. We’ll see just how bad it ends up. My expectations are low, and I’m bracing myself for some synthetics, but at least it won’t be a cupcake frosted vanilla!

          • Have to add that the Lush Vanillary was suggested to me as a dupe of Tihota, and that one is major-league weird. Made me a touch queasy. I can’t define just what was so creepy about it, but can only say I have a strong stomach that isn’t usually affected at all by perfumes, and this was one fetid vanilla.

          • Oh dear. But is it terrible that I now have an admittedly morbid curiosity as to what Lush Vanillary smells like? Before you say anything, it is a very FLEETING curiosity, and nothing that would actually inspire me to seek out the fragrance to smell it. lol

        • 😀 re the Vanillary. … I actually like a couple of the ‘tamer’ Gorilla/Lush ‘fumes – BUT aaarrgh, I have to agree, I had a similar reaction to you – Vanillary is what I call the: “Maniacal Vanilla on Steroids”. :/

    • Tihota is the king – queen and jack of all vanilla’s for me. I have spent a lifetime and large amount of cash attempting to find the Holy Grail of scents, this is it. I get endless compliments. I adore it. Yes it’s frightfully expensive but…there is nothing..sadly to take its place. As for the VS Vanilla Lace, I was told that I smelt like the lining of a hampter cage – that woody bark stuff used as a ‘bottom filler ‘. Nice 🙁 not the desired effect. I actaully liked it and didn’t think it smelled that way on me, but what I smelled as opposed to my audience did , well they won. Not a glowing review sorry to say.
      So reach deep, save you pennies, Tihota …its worth every dime and then some.

      • Welcome to the blog, Carol. I’m glad you found your Holy Grail vanilla. I had to laugh at your friends’ description of VS Vanilla Lace on your skin. I know exactly the sort of vanilla woody, hamster cage smell they’re talking about!! 😀

  2. I have a confession to make that even makes me blush at times. Mad as it sounds, I actually bought two bottles of Tihota after sampling it. The first was just after it came out and I sampled and fell for it and Manakara, so dipped into my perfume budget and ended up owning and adoring both bottles. The second was just at the end of the first run and it was being discontinued. I’d asked Lucky Scent about refills since my first bottle of Tihota was getting alarmingly low, and they told me if I was interested, to get it now because it was going away and wouldn’t be back. It was some of the most depressing perfume news for me and I bought one right away. Vanilla is one of my favorite notes and I’ve tried many. But this and Spiritueuse Double Vanille are the absolute best I’ve found so far and when I had to face the fact that my first bottle was running out and I’d never own any again, the notion pushed me over the edge and I caved for a backup.

    While I haven’t tried the re-released version, I’m happy to see it is a bit less expensive than when first released. And while 50ml isn’t a lot, on me the wonderful waves of alternating vanilla and sensual musk that envelop me for hours are just irresistible and something I haven’t been able to replace.

    Thank you for your review, Kafka. I’m definitely going to sample the re-releases again to compare them to the original bottles I have, and to try Isvaraya (sp?) again since I didn’t quite love jasmine as much in ’06 as I do now and think I’d appreciate it much more today. Either way, I’m so glad to see the Indult line return and am seriously considering decants of their musk and leather perfumes as well if those have come back, too. And yet paying over $200 for a bottle of perfume is difficult to justify, but Indult does keep calling me back for more, and I mustn’t be the only one given the brand’s relaunch so hopefully it is back to stay since I’ll probably be a customer as long as it’s available.

    • I love — LOVE — sheepish perfume confessions! They’re simply the best! 😀 But I wouldn’t feel any shame were I in your shoes, because you clearly adored the scent from the start, you’re a true gourmand lover (which I’m not), vanilla is one of your favorite things, and you felt quite an understandable panic when you heard it was going to be discontinued. Hell, the word “discontinuation” can (and has) pushed many a perfume lover over the edge. It’s certainly lit a fire under my tush in the past. 🙂

      Wear your Tihota on your bad self, and don’t blush even once over having a back-up. Enjoy!

  3. I knew there was a vanilla out there for you 🙂 (& not at all surprised ‘the big T’ happened to be the one.) … As for the review, it was as if you were taking the words out of my mouth – couldn’t agree more on every point. (& that ‘synaesthetic-pic’ is so spot-on, that’s exactly IT!)

    But mostly, I had to add a quick word about those supposed ‘perfect dupes’ for T – I can confirm that as you’ve already suspected, they’re indeed highly misguided, unfortunately. I imagine they’ve been added by those to whom all & any vanilla is just vanilla is vanilla – (i.e. by noses with nary an ounce of nuance.) I’ve smelled all the supposed ‘dupes’ mentioned above & trust me they do NOT even come close to smelling similar, let alone being a ‘dupe’. Yes they’re of course certainly ‘vanillary’, BUT that’s it – a world of difference otherwise. I couldn’t even be hard pressed to chose one (of those mentioned) that might come the closest – as I don’t think any of them do!

    As for Tihota itself, as much as I DO appreciate it’s charm & quality, for me to wear personally I unfortunately find it a little too ‘one-dimentional’. I think I prefer my ‘solivanilles’ with a little more ‘colour’ or a ‘twist’, plus definitely more ‘oomph’. (Tho’ it’s longevity on me is beyond excellent – easily well over 12hrs). So it’s not quite my ‘HG’ vanilla – but I can fully understand how it might/can be someone else’s. 🙂

    • Well, Tihota still isn’t my Holy Grail, but we’re certainly getting closer than before! LOL.

      I have to say, I appreciated so much about your comment. THANK YOU for sharing your experiences with the other alleged, supposed “perfect dupes” because I think that will help so many people who may read the review and comments. I appreciate it for myself, because the insistence with which people talked about two of those fragrances did make me pause. I knew the Victoria’s Secret couldn’t be it, but I did wonder about the other two, even *with* the caramel note in Ligne St. Barth. I’m very glad to have confirmation that they’re not alike at all. Any of them.

      As for Tihota, I absolutely agree with you that it is one-dimensional and a little too simple. I would have liked more myself, though I suppose it wouldn’t technically be a PURE vanilla scent if it had a twist from other elements and PURE vanilla seems to be exactly what they were going for? They achieved their goal successfully, so is it really fair for me to have wanted something other than what was intended? Probably not. But for $200, I sure as hell would want it way anyway. LOL. Still, a lot of people seem to think that a pure vanilla scent doesn’t need a lot of “bells and whistles” (to quote one review I read), so it really is a very personal thing, as you noted.

      Lastly, I’m so glad you found the main picture to be spot-on. I do have synesthesia, though I rarely talk about it, but I’m always proud when I find a picture that not only captures what I see before my eyes and in my head, but that also captures it for *others* as well. Finding the right photo can often be a right royal nightmare, *particularly* for gourmand reviews for some reason, so it makes me really happy that I found something for Tihota that you thought was “exactly IT!” Yay, and thank you. 🙂

      • My pleasure ! 🙂 … And re the ‘synaethesia’ – that doesn’t surprise me at all, as I always think you’re pics are inspired choices. 🙂 (T’s one was off-the-charts apt tho’ – well, IMO at least.)
        I think I might possibly be somewhat too, tho’ mine’s triggered far more by ‘sounds/music’ than scent. (Tho’ you’re ‘scent-pics’ always reverberate/make perfect sense to me!)

        And yes, I agree that with ‘soliflores’ it’s unfair to expect too many ‘twists’ or too much other ‘color’, for sure. And I think FK did a superb job with it as far as a ‘solivanille’ goes – I in no way meant what I said as a criticism. (Besides, I do think Tihota does still have it’s own ‘twists’, i.e. a floral/musky one – that’s kinda what I meant). In fact, I believe ‘twists/color’ are particularly necessary with soliflore vanilla ‘fumes, in order for them to escape/supersede the ‘mere vanilla extract’ problem. So, I think Tihota is actually a pretty perfect composition as it is, for what it is … just not perfect for me personally.
        The soliflore vanilla I finally settled with (so far!) was PG’s Felanilla, as I liked it’s banana/saffron ‘twists’ – plus also how it defies expectation by being a pretty ‘cool’ feeling/smelling vanilla (only later warming towards the base.) But even it is still not quite my ‘HG-vanilla’ yet either – for that it would need to be far ‘darker’. (+ much ‘boozier/woodier’ … which, methinks, I might never quite get from a mere ‘solivanille’, so … .) 🙂

  4. This vanilla scent smells baby soft, virginal, innocent, angelic and lacks other aspects, in my humble opinion. Interesting as a scent for its own beauty and message, but not wearable every day or compelling enough to make a statement on a special occasion. Life is more complex than purity. Definitely high quality matching the high price.

    • I absolutely agree with you, Pipette, that Tihota is very simple, basic, and perhaps overly “pure.” Absolutely agree. I also share your view that it’s not compelling enough to be a “special occasion” scent, though I think few soliflores meet that criteria, especially when they’re in the gourmand category. I think special occasion scents have to be complex with a full set of notes (so, rarely a soliflore), and with substantially more body or opulence. I think that as a general rule.

      Yet, as I commented to someone else up above, the goal here was clearly to make a fragrance that was simply pure vanilla and nothing else, except for ensuring that the quality was the highest and the notes were the smoothest. Francis Kurkdjian accomplished that goal and what was expected of him. So, is it really fair for us to blame him/Indult for not having a complex fragrance with other elements? Well, for $200, maybe yes. 😉

      As for wearability, I think people who are hardcore vanilla lovers and who want the note reduced down to its purest aspects in the most luxurious form would definitely find Tihota to be wearable every day, but it really comes down to individual tastes. For me, there are very few fragrances of ANY kind that I could wear every single day! (And vanilla certainly wouldn’t be my genre of choice in that case.) I might be able to manage with an amber soliflore, though, but I doubt I’d last more than 2 weeks even then.

      So, I don’t really disagree with you, but I also think that neither you nor I are in the target audience for Tihota, and that our individual tastes are better suited in general for a very different genre than what is being offered here. 🙂

  5. How dominant is the butter note? How does it compare to Dulcis in Fundo? DIF turned out to be less orange vanilla creme and more butter overload on me than I expected it to. I’d love to sample Tihota but not if it’s all butter on me.

    • Not very dominant. And Tihota is very different from Dulcis in Fundo, imo. I would never think of them in the same breath. Another reader, Piper, described Tihota as angelic, and I think it’s true. Dulcis in Fundo is significantly richer, heavier, more hardcore gourmand and buttery with more of a creme caramel profile than the vanilla here. I’m not surprised that the orange part of Dulcis in Fundo didn’t last on you, as it was very, very brief on me as well, but I did find the scent to be more waffle-cone than heavy butter. Still, Tihota is very different in feel, imo, as well as in the sort of vanilla that was used.

  6. Very, very interesting to read about the different types of vanilla, thanks for piquing my interest! I googled a bit and read that the Tahiti vanilla contains Heliotropin and Diacetyl which makes the aroma more flowery, aniselike and fresh.

    I have a sample of Tihota and like it a lot, but for my nose it’s almost too sweet, reminiscent of cotton candy, but like you wrote it’s not a high-decibel shrieking vanilla, more like making cotton candy out of brown instead of white sugar. This could be due to the tonka bean, which I can smell during all of Tihota’s stages of development.
    Sprayed on a scarf it lasted more than a week!

    • I’m glad I could pique your interest about the different sorts of vanilla beans, Anka. 🙂 As for Tihota, it’s sweetness is definitely not for everyone, and I suspect it could be quite excessive on some people’s skin and by their taste limits.

    • The ‘heliotropin’ doesn’t surprise me at all, but I’m rather surprised about the ‘diacetyl’ content of Tahitian vanilla, as that is the main organic compound that imparts a buttery flavour/aroma. I didn’t find Tihota all that particularly ‘buttery’, certainly much less so than most other vanilla ‘fumes. – But then it wouldn’t surprise me either if they’d chosen to use a vanilla absolute stripped of that particular compound (especially for a fragrance) as it’s been linked to respiratory problems (what they call “popcorn worker’s lung”) … just FYI. 🙂

  7. I liked it when I tried it, but it was too ‘sugary’ for my taste. I eventually went for the Mona, which is more spicy on me, and less sweet!

    • I can see how it might end up being far too sweet on some people and for their threshold limits. I know a lot of people adore the Mona di Orio. I so wish it had worked on me, but it was so excessively buttery on my skin. Like actual movie theatre/cinema butter that is poured on popcorn. Everyone else I know loves it, though.

  8. Is it better than Shalimar EdC? I keep coming back to that one as the best vanilla which does not set off my Sweet Alarm.

    • Shalimar isn’t a soliflore, and it’s certainly not a pure vanilla scent. Shalimar is an oriental, this is a gourmand. I don’t consider Shalimar to be a vanilla at all in its main, core essence or identity. This is. I don’t think you’d like true, pure vanillas at all, James.

  9. I am not sure I know what a perfect vanilla is. I have always thought that once I smell it I’d know. I haven’t smelled the perfect vanilla: really good ones, not even great.
    I am glad to read the sugar levels of this are not insane. Sugar is one of those things that always send me running for a shower and can physically and metaphorically turn my stomach. Your description of what happens after 90 minutes made my straight eyelashes curl with enthusiasm and it is sufficient to add to my next sample batch.
    So many beautiful things to smell in this world. I think your reviews are very much like the songs of the sirens, K.

    • I think Tihota would be too simple for you, my sweets, and probably too sweet as well. That said, I definitely think it’s a fragrance worth testing/trying once if you’ve been looking for a good vanilla. The thing is, I know you’ve been searching for a dark, almost dry, slightly vanilla — and this certainly is not that. Not at all. Keep your expectations low, and perhaps it might be a cozy comfort scent for a night in, but don’t expect a lot.

  10. I like Tihota and own it, but don’t actually reach for it that often as I find it kind of one-dimensional and not strong enough. My coworker wears it every day as her signature scent. I am ducking and running here, but my favorite vanilla is actually Profumum Vanitas. That one just does it for me in a way that Tihota did not. I also love Dulcis in Fundo, which is major orange creamsicle on me. Needless to say, I am a gourmand lover. 🙂

    • LOLOL re. Vanitas! 😉 Heh. I know how much you love that one, dear Tara, and I can totally see why Tihota would be too sheer, light, and simple for your tastes. It’s certainly not an opaque, heavy gourmand like the Profumums, and it’s also not as strong in comparison. A very different sort of vanilla as well from the more buttery, creme brulee sort in the Profumums. (I like Dulcis in Fundo, for what it’s worth. lol) Enjoy your rich gourmands, my dear. I know you must smell wonderful in them.

  11. Tihota really is pretty. I’m not a gourmand person but I got a sample of it and really enjoyed it. I’m not tempted by it particularly, but I do think it’s quite decadent and delicious smelling. I know I’d love smelling it on someone else!

    • I can’t see Tihota being your thing at all, Kevin. Even apart from the gourmand issue, it’s a very simple scent. Plus, I’m sure your sillage-eating skin eats it up as well. But I’m glad you tried it.

  12. I am late to the party, but thank you for the review! Ack, way to fuel my lemmings… but I have law/b-school loans to pay off, plus I was gifted a travel spray of Profumum Dulcis in Fundo for Xmas (which I love, but that thing will almost certainly last me the next half-century; one half-spray is enough to scent me for a day), and do I really need more sugary, vanilla’ed perfumes in my arsenal? The answer is of course no, but that doesn’t stop me from staring longingly at the product page for this perfume on Luckyscent. 😉

    • If I caused a lemming, then my job is done…. 😉 Totally OT, I hope the exams went well, from Torts to the rest.

  13. This is the best review of Tihota I’ve seen yet – thanks so much for it! 🙂 My bottle of Tihota arrived a few weeks ago and I don’t regret taking the plunge. I find it strange you don’t think it lasts because mine does (like 12 hours coming back in wisps) – I think it lasts more sprayed than dabbed.

    • Skin chemistry differs from person to person, both in terms of specific notes that may be highlighted and in terms of the longevity of the overall scent. 🙂 I’m really glad to hear that Tihota works so well on you *AND* that you’ve got great longevity. It’s a beautiful vanilla. Enjoy your bottle!

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