• Dan Naughton

Hyrax by Zoologist Perfumes

Updated: Aug 11, 2018

The hyrax is a small mammal found in Africa and Arabia and is a rather fortunate creature. Its fossiled poop is used in perfume. The good fortune lies in the fact that less lucky creatures such as the musk deer, civet cat and castoreum producing beaver have had to endure people interfering with them in various ways for years in order to extract the aromatic jewels nestling in their nether regions.

Hyrax Extrait de Parfum is a 2018 release and was created by perfumer Sven Pritzkoleit under the artistic direction of aromatic impresario Victor Wong - the man at the head of Zoologist Perfumes. The company is based in Canada. The Zoologist range of fragrances are notoriously daring and many are considered more as works of art than as scents sane people would actually wear on a regular basis. Other examples include Bat, Panda, Beaver, Camel and Rhinoceros. All are fascinatingly pungent and challenging but arguably strangely beguiling. More wearable releases include the airy and floral Hummingbird and the beautifully rich and exotic Nightingale.

Sven Pritzkoleit is a very adventurous perfumer whose SP Parfums range are worthy of fragrance enthusiasts' attention. Lignum Vitae Forte is a wonderful rich and earthy fougere fragrance that I can highly recommend sampling.

As Hyrax (also know as Africa Stone) is a famously challenging animalic note, many will approach this perfume with trepidation.

The fragrance notes can be seen above.

The opening blast is sweet and complex. The whisky and benzoin give sweetness while the amber and saffron combine to suggest the exotic aromas of the hyraxes' far off homelands. As time progresses things get slightly less pretty and a little more gnarly. There is certainly a musky and rather funky undertone to the scent and it is not recommended for office wear. Sweet floral notes combine with a hint of incense to remind me ever so slightly of Tauer perfumes' L'Air Desert Marocain. As I write this, I'm listening to a YouTube review by Wafts from the Loft and they just made the same comparison. I promise I thought of this before I heard them say it but I am glad someone agrees! However, this olfactory depiction of the desert hasn't airbrushed out the less romantic smells of the Moroccan desert and its overheated inhabitants.

This fragrance is very strong. It lasts for ages and wafts through the air with a presence that is hard to ignore. Judicious application is advised.

If the idea of a scent evoking hot stones, exotic sweetness and a healthy dose of animalic fecal funk appeals to you then a sample, travel spray or - if you dare - a full bottle of Hyrax is worth considering. I have thoroughly enjoyed sampling this one but still find Nightingale to be my favourite from this wonderful and brave fragrance house. Oh..and the art work is brilliant.


60ml bottle - $145.00 USD

11ml travel spray - $40.00 USD

1.5ml sample - $6.00 USD

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