Profumum Roma Arso Eau de Parfum is heavily smoked woods with a resinous undertone that gets less smoky and smoother, drier, and a little spiced and sweet as the heart unfolded. Initially, the pine was the most dominant wood but then dry cedar met it and harmonized as a duo of woods. The smoke starts stronger, more like burning logs in a campfire and then becomes more aromatic and sweet from the incense. The drydown is smoky, resinous, and woody with a hint of spiced vanilla.
- top notes: fir balsam, cedarwood
- heart notes: resin, tonka bean
- base notes: incense
The opening was a hearty cedarwood campfire in the middle of a pine forest with dark, smoke plumes–fiery, smoky, and harsher–before softening, more smoky incense with pine and cedarwood aromatic characteristics coming through under a haze of smoke. There was something resinous underneath that offered subtle spice and sweetness without being anywhere near sugary.
After five minutes, the campfire had been smothered with just the last licks of flames and gray smoke whispering out of the wood pile, which allowed the forest’s bouquet of resin and wood to come forward. Over the next two hours, Arso smelled of pine and cedar with a smoky, resinous base with spiced vanilla eventually peeking through as the drydown arrived, where the woods became softer, more blended with smooth resins and subtly sweetened vanilla.
For testing, I used 1/3 of a 1ml sample vial dabbed to the underside and topside of my wrist area on my left arm. I used an unscented moisturizer prior to applying the scent as this is also my swatching arm (aka, incredibly parched at any given moment) as I found scent did not hold well here otherwise.
It lasted for five hours until it was a skin-scent and about eight hours before it was quite difficult to detect on my skin. The sillage and projection were moderate with the sillage dropping faster than the projection within the first hour of wear.
I can see why people make comparisons of this to Fumidus, but Arso has, at most, 5% of the intense, black smoke aspect of Fumidus and doesn’t linger anywhere near as long (only a few minutes) before it’s more about smoky incense. I quite enjoyed this one for how woodsy it was–a good mix of pine and cedar for hours–with tree sap and some dryness. It’s definitely a contender for a full-bottle!
- 100ml for $275
- 18ml for $93 (harder to find size in the US)
- 0.7ml sample for $6