Invictus Victory Elixir Invictus Victory Elixir

Invictus Victory Elixir Review: A Fragrance Revolution

Invictus Victory Elixir
Invictus Victory Elixir

Invictus Victory Elixir is a men’s cologne released in 2023 by Paco Rabanne.

So, of course, as a designer brand, your catalog of flankers is not complete unless you have an Elixir flanker, right?

We've seen that with Christian Dior's Sauvage Elixir, and we've seen that with Le Male Elixir by Jean Paul Gaultier. 

I looked at the note breakdown online, and it sounds really interesting, right? Vanilla, tonka bean, amber with a touch of incense, the incense being olibanum, otherwise known as frankincense, of course.

So, of course, if you're looking for something that takes things in a darker, more meditative, incensey direction, sounds like it's going to be a hit, right? Let's find out.

What does Invictus Victory Elixir smell like?

Let's first unveil the fragrance notes:

The top notes are Cardamom, Lavender, and Black Pepper.

Middle notes are Incense and Patchouli.

Base notes are Vanilla Pod and Tonka Bean.

Right in the opening of this fragrance, you are going to get this particular type of juiciness from it. And even though I sprayed this on like 10 or 15 minutes ago, I'm still getting that juiciness from this fragrance.

Now, that juiciness, I thought was coming from some kind of citrus ingredient. It's not listed in the note breakdown, but I am convinced there is some citrus in here. There's something tart happening in here.

Now I was inclined to think that it was pineapple or something fresh, juicy, maybe a little bit of orange or bergamot or lemon or something like that because I am getting something quite bright in the opening.

And then I thought I was getting something that I would equate to the note of fig, something creamy, lactonic. Fig is a fantasy note in perfumes, and a lot of times coconut is used in the synthesis of a fig accord because it's creamy, it's fruity, it's sweet, it's a little lactonic.

So, I'm thinking of that bright tart juicy introduction, and I'm also thinking about that coconut fig vibe that I'm getting from this one.

And it clicked into place when I looked it up online, and people were comparing it to Le Beau Le Parfum by Jean-Paul Gaultier. And that's a fragrance that also has pineapple and coconut and some other sweeter ingredients in here. So that's when I had that revelatory “aha” moment.

I had a revelation. I was like, “Oh my God, this one does smell rather tart and fruity, and it's not listed in the note breakdown.” But funny enough, I do kind of get this sort of pineapple-coconut thing happening from it. And even now, 15-20 minutes later, I'm still getting that vibe from it rather strongly.

Of course, people are also comparing it to the original Paco Rabanne Invictus Victory. And I do think that some of the Invictus flankers have had a bit of a chocolatey vibe to them. I find that in this flanker it's diminished.

The one thing that I do kind of like about this one is that it doesn't have too much of that Stronger With You sweetness in here. I've seen that happening with a lot of more recent designer releases, so I'm kind of glad and relieved in the sense that it doesn't have that happening in here.

There's a very light almost woodiness from the Patchouli as the fragrance dries down, but it never becomes a focal point. It is still based mainly around that attention-grabbing vanilla, which is so well done here. 

And some people may also key in on sort of a toffee-like or caramel sort of sweetness in here, even though that's not an official note.

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Comparison to Pure XS Night:

One other thing that I love about this is that it's almost a spiritual successor for me to Pure XS Night.

And I should also say that it's sort of a spiritual successor to Pure XS as well. 

So Pure XS Night and Pure XS, have that same almost kind of sparkling sweetness right off the top, where it almost bubbles off your skin. That sounds painful, but it has that carbonated bubbly sweetness.

Pure XS and Pure XS Night both, have good performance, they're strong, they last a long time, and they lean in on that sweetness for pretty much the entirety of the scent.

That's what Invictus Victory Elixir is doing, just with a different overall scent profile, but the idea is not that far removed from what they did with Pure XS and Pure XS Night, even down to the coloration of the bottle, really similar.

Projection, Longevity, and Versatility:

So first up, in terms of the uniqueness and the overall smell, as I said, a bit derivative. It does smell quite similar to some other designer fragrances that I own and have tried in the past.

I'm glad that they did forego using the Stronger With You type of sweetness in this one. I think that one is becoming a bit overdone and played out. But the overall smell is very pleasant.

In terms of longevity, this one longevity is going to give you about 9 hours on your skin.

The projection was great for the first hour of application. It radiated a little bit beyond an arm's length, especially for those first 45 minutes.

This stuff is quite loud, and there is, despite the fact you look it up online and it seems like it's comprised entirely of base notes, there is this non-linearity about it that I do enjoy.

So there is going to be a steady evolution or progression on your skin, especially on account of those tart, fruity notes that I'm getting and I'm smelling quite explicitly, but they're not in the note breakdown.

So try it for yourself, and hopefully, you'll have a similar experience. It would be very validating, I think. Also, in terms of the projection, elbow's length scent right around 6 hours, skin scent right around 9 hours.

Versatility, I think it would appeal to somebody a little bit younger because of the sweetness.

It's a bit masculine-leaning. It's going to be more of a fall/winter time fragrance, early spring as well for me, daytime or nighttime, though most people would probably say it's an evening scent or a date scent.

But I'll tell you what, legitimately, I wore this stuff a few days ago, it was hot outside like it was summertime temperatures through and through, didn't matter, I wore it, smelled awesome.


So Invictus has changed from a fragrance line where initially I didn't care as much about the new ones coming out to where now it's one of my more anticipated releases of the year.

I cannot wait to see what they do next year, and I'm glad that they've kind of shaken off the Invictus DNA a little bit and they're doing different things within the line.

So I'm personally excited that Paco Rabanne has taken the Invictus line in a different direction. And since they've given us different takes on what Invictus could be now, I wouldn't even mind if they revisit the original DNA and do it in a modern way at this point.

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