Ormonde Jayne Ta’if

Last night, I experienced a tender moment with my younger son. During the goodbye to my boys, as my husband and I were leaving for a night out, my five year old leaned into me and said, “Let me smell you!” He nuzzled into my neck and exclaimed, “You smell good!” He smiled and scurried off to play with his babysitter and brother. I always get such delight when my sons comment on my perfume. This small pleasure doesn’t happen that often, so when it does, I know they are expressing their olfactory preferences and creating potentially powerful memories.

Ormonde Jayne’s Ta’if was the perfume that elicited my son’s lovely and loving acknowledgment, making me adore this ambery rose scent a little bit more. Ta’if is beautiful no doubt, but it’s complex with an air of cultivation brought about by the interesting and unique combination of notes. He’s got sophisticated taste my little guy!

The top notes are listed as pink pepper, saffron and dates, but Ta’if is not overly sweet, peppery or fruity. The opening is opulent with a hint of spice that seems to come more from freesia’s petals rather than pink pepper. Rose is immediately present as well, but as a silhouette, not a rose in full bloom. The dates and saffron are not detectable to me as individual notes, but combine subtly to create the exotic feel that a perfume bearing the name Ta’if should possess. Ta’if  is a Saudi Arabian city and I imagine strolling through its bustling markets amidst spices, chewy delicacies and flowers when I wear its namesake perfume.

Freesia, which is listed among rose, orange flower absolute and jasmine as the heart of Ta’if, has as a strong presence. The interplay between the freesia and rose is dynamic. The green, pepperiness of freesia allows Tai’f to become more than a “rosy” scent. Freesia, in my opinion, is the backbone of Ta’if, bringing together the flowery and spicy components harmoniously and compellingly.

The basenotes of Ta’if are broom and amber. Broom, I am not familiar with, but amber has become a friend of mine lately, and in this perfume it adds another dimension to its unfolding. Ta’if evolves into an ambery rose fragrance in the drydown, allowing freesia to fade as it acquiesces to the soft amber and vanilla finish.


Tai’f is also available as an Essential Bathing Oil that is presented in a gorgeous glass bottle. The oil, like the perfume, is not 100% natural as it does contain some synthetics and petrochemicals, but is free of parabens, genetically modified ingredients and colorants. I have not used the Bathing Oil in the bath as I am loath to use it up too quickly. Instead, I use a drop or two to moisturize my hands and smell Ta’if’s sparkling aroma throughout the day. While the oil is not as smooth as the EdP, it is a more affordable way to indulge in one of Ormonde Jayne’s stunning bottles.

On the Ormonde Jayne website, it is stated that Ta’if “prefers dusk, the night, parties, promises and assignations.” I do think it’s appropriate for the day, especially the Bathing Oil since it’s not quite as rich as the EdP. But Ta’if does take on a more magical quality in the dark hours, causing my sweet boy to declare emphatically, “You smell good!”

Ta’if is available at the Ormonde Jayne boutique in London and at the Ormonde Jayne website. It is £68.00 for the 50ml EdP and £48.00 for the 100ml bottle of Essential Bathing Oil.

Disclosure: Samples from the company’s PR agency were provided for this review. The opinons in this review are my own. I was not financially compensated for this review or any other.