Monthly Archives: August 2012

White Gardenia Petals – Illuminum

The infamous fragrance worn by Kate Middleton on her wedding day -

“A beautiful bouquet of angelic white flowers. Top notes of Gardenia and Cassis shine through Precious Woods and Musk.” Sounds lovely :D


URGHHHH!

White Gardenia Petals opens soapy, a huge synthetic overload that comes off as squeaky clean vinyl. Aldehydic up top, with a cheap lily of the valley accord, a very subtle spice, and some attempt at scrubbed up jasmine grandiflorum – not a trace of gardenia in sight.

The headache inducing opening is extremely similar to that generic sticky scent of hairspray: a cloud of musky white florals that blend into a chemical bomb – one that similarly makes you want to cough and waft your hand around your face, desperately trying to free your nose of the minute particals intent on invading your precious, fearful nose. I almost get a “chlorine” note, it has an aquatic layer over it – but with a density that reminds me of calone without the melon.

The muskiness is always prominent – a super clean white musk that aggressively penetrates the floral notes. It seems to bleach all the grubby facets that make up a great gardenia – the fact the fleshy white petals and creamy texture of the gardenia is also non-existent means that you can forget even trying to hunt for it.

White Gardenia Petals is musk, soap, a hideous floral “bouquet” (we’ll call it that for now), a sprinkle of powder and an overload of hairspray. The heart and drydown are so reminiscent of laundry powder it’s uncanny. This is not a good fragrance… at all.

White Gardenia Petals 50ml Illuminum – $140 Luckyscent

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Ambre Precieux – Maitre Parfumeur et Gantier & Ambra Nera – Farmacia SS. Annunziata

Two ambers here, samples given by the lovely Amber King Steve over at The Scented Hound.
I have always felt like I’ve found “my amber soliflore” – L’Eau D’Ambre Extreme by L’Artisan Parfumeur. I’m always open to discovering something new, but have never really explored other amber soliflores out of choice because of this reason.
Well, the hound challenged me with a bunch of ambers and some of them have been quite something. I’ve been missing out.! Here’s two of ‘em :)

A little something medicinal opens Ambre Precieux. Listed is lavender, maybe that’s the herbal boost. Of course piled on top of that quickly after is the leading amber. The amber I find very similar to that in the L’Artisan, however this one is more herbal, bitter and resinous – it doesn’t have the plush, creamy coziness of L’Eau D’Ambre Extreme – ANYWAY – enough comparisons already, back to this.

Ok so I actually get the lavender for a good while underneath the amber. It’s herbal and camphorous – how I like it, but without the dewy freshness that could have really made this opening good! There’s a bit of a resin overload with the amber. It’s bitter, almost crumbly, with just a scattering of pillow soft powder, sweetened with a hint of vanilla.

In the heart is a little crackling of spice, and a tiny hint of incense, but mainly this is all about the amber, and, a pretty good amber it is. I wouldn’t define it as even remotely sexy as many do, I find it quite stern and uptight, that herbal edge like a razor blade expression *desperately trying not to include my reference Tilda Swinton picture here…*.
The vanilla keeps this fragrance just about cuddly and comforting – as with all amber soliflores, it is a perfect winter scent – it practically smells like a sweater.

In the drydown the incense turns a little myrrh-y which puts me off a tad, myrrh + amber is like a breath attack (I always say both notes have a “breathy” quality which can gross me out), thankfully here it’s quite tame and maybe is that little “animalic” edge people talk about.
As for me, I’ll stick with my safe ole’ powdery fav :) Onto the next one…

Oh shit! Yes! This is better :D Brilliant opening. A rich animalic amber, bitter-sweet, not a smidge of powder yet – with the consistency of thick syrup. There’s a complicated herbal element in there, a much more prominent camphorous accord up top – almost mentholated (I’m glad I reviewed this one second or the MPeG may not have been so pleasantly written!).

A bitter greenery cuts underneath the amber, and it smells almost as though there’s a big shred of leather underneath. It’s aromatic and smoky, the leathery aroma turning almost musky – still very animalic to my nose. Lots of different things going on to a point where my sentences are getting a little scrambled.

Unfortunately it tames a little quickly (not that the heart isn’t good – I just love that opening so much) – and brings to mind old books and buildings, similarly to how Dark Aoud conjures these images. There’s that vanillic benzoin with a papery texture, dusty woods, that patchouli and vetiver providing an astringent green, and the amber – a smoked caramel syrup.

The incense smoke turns almost metallic (which I love!) – an edge much more razor-sharp than the now wimpy lavender in Ambre Precieux. The vanilla sweetens even more underneath, but never overpowering – the amber restrained, and definitely not taking the leading role as I expected. The resins, the sweetness, the metallic smoke, the leather – it all combines into something that makes me both go “MMM” and “EW!” – the perfect combination.

The drydown brings the rich caramel benzoin from the heart and entwines it with the vetiver – an unusual combination that brings to mind the vanilla/vetiver pairing of Fat Electrician by ELdO, only with smoky liqueurs and resins above it. The leather/vanilla remains papery, and Ambra Nera quietens into a shadow. A big dose of civet keeps it feeling rich and slightly sour, with a pungent animal presence. I really like it.

Ambre Precieux 100ml Maitre Parfumeur et Gantier – $120 Luckyscent
Ambra Nera 100ml Farmacia SS. Annunziata – $160 Luckyscent

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An Informal Book Review:The Diary Of A Nose – Jean-Claude Ellena

After reading great things about this book, I bought it today – full retail price by the way!
I finished it in one day – as it’s so short, and was left pretty gobsmacked.

“This… this gets published?!”

I hope I don’t come across as too immature in my points, but here we go:

The book begins in the middle of numerous fragrance related projects of which we never really hear anything about. It also begins just after the completion of his latest iris for Hermessence, which apart from the choosing of the name Iris Ukiyoe, is never discussed. (The choosing of the name is mainly informing us of the difficult decision as to name it Ukiyo – or add on that extra e).

The projects which he mentions starting – including a mint cologne, and a women’s fragrance with a pear note up top (which is ironic considering Ellena consistently pushes forward that he doesn’t believe putting a gender on his fragrances in the book) – never get completed, we never fully hear of their development other than one or two lines as to what worked and what didn’t. These exerts are exceptionally brief and never anything but a couple of lines long. Nothing like for example the fascinating in-depth progression of Duchaufour’s work on Seville A l’Aube in The Perfume Lover. There is very, very little to do with life as a perfumer in the book.

So what is the book filled with? A mundane inner monologue.

In the middle of the book, we get almost a page worth of appreciation for a bowl. Yes, the bowl you eat soup out of – he begins to describe how perfect the shape is, the fact that “you can draw a bowl in one brush stroke”… It didn’t quite convince me and I wasn’t too sure what I was reading, but hey I went with it.
Also in his description on how he writes his formulas – oh wait, before I go into this, don’t think for a second you’ll get something scientific, or something that’ll make you go “wow I never thought of that”, or “what a great perspective!” – no, the way he writes is far more literal – with a pencil! He describes how he likes to use a pencil and paper, and that’s about all the insight we get into that.

However, he does bring this up again later on in the book near the end (when obviously there is little more to discuss), where he talks about his Moleskin notebook. He tells us he “likes how it fits into my pocket” and how the “elastic keeps the pages together”
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I’m sure I shouldn’t be writing this review becuase I’m struggling to quote anything directly (you’ll find out why in a bit) – the point is, the book would lead into numerous stories, and then end before anything happens. This happened in every diary entry – nothing came to a finale or a conclusion. Some diary entries were literally a short paragraph that at the end left me completely baffled as to it’s purpose in the book.

So towards the end of the book, after reading the LITERAL day-to-day activities of a perfumer (which I’m surprised didn’t include “Woke up and had a wash – was deep in thought”, I wait for some magic to happen – a fragrant revelation, an ingenious new idea that will leave me eager to find out more. Unfortunately it ends on almost a blank, there is no ending – it just happens.

What you are left with in the last few paragraphs is a list of accords and how to make them (oh brilliant, I have all these obscure aromachemicals at home…) – gardenia, different variants on chocolate, cherry etc. These pages fill about 1/10 of the book at the end. Reading these aroma chemicals means nothing to me.

And yes, abruptly, the book ends. Ermmmmm…. ok so I didn’t get any detailed insight into any fragrance this guy makes, none of his history (which I didn’t expect anyway), no back story on his most recent work, no completion of his ideas briefly discussed – or even insight into his experiments with the ingredients.
At the top of the page where the date is written, it would often state what country he was in… how did he get there? What else is he doing in Hong Kong and Japan other than appreciating the sliding doors? He mentions how one of his Jardin fragrances – he considers one of his most beautiful floral compositions… Why? Tell us why?!

What I discovered about Jean-Claude Ellena is he likes his Moleskin, pencils, bowls, japanese calligraphy, and questions he can’t answer (he does attempt to answer a difficult question in the book regarding “What makes a perfect fragrance”, but to no surprise, he does not quite manage).

I hate to be a kill joy – but this book is not for me. I think it’s always fair to read an alternative point of view – everyone is too nice these days!
Thankfully the suckers at Waterstones took my book back at the end of the day after I claimed it was “Clearly the wrong one…” >:D

Sorry guys.

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Tawaf – La Via Del Profumo + free 15ml giveaway! (and minis!)

Having recently been captivated by the niche, natural perfumer’s of our fragrant world, I have been exploring the La Via Del Profumo line – previously AbdesSalaam Attar.
Tawaf is the latest (and last I believe) release in his Arabian line, it is quite something!

Sweet earthy fungal notes of rich mushroom, and fluorescent indolic jasmine burst into the opening of Tawaf. It’s raw and primal, the jasmine taking on a no holds barred animalic role.
The green twang underneath, paired with the sodden mushrooms create the dense, damp soil in which the heady jasmine bush is growing from. To compare to another fragrance, at first it almost brings to mind what Un Matin D’Orage is to gardenia (in the opening at least) – an accurate representation of a single flower, up close at first, that begins to distance itself incorporating all the aromas surrounding it. A huge difference however is that the Goutal smells hugely synthetic – piling on bunches of aromachemicals to create this effect. Here however, the naturals create a far more organic, even unrefined initial portrait with far more corners to explore.

Bizarrely Tawaf’s translucency becomes apparent quickly, and within minutes an ethereal almost aquatic layer coats it. A pure water note brings out the clarity of the jasmine, as though the rain has just fallen onto the dense, stuffiness of the opening.  The fungal notes of earth disappearing, they filter out the harsh edges of the jasmine.

This water note pulls with it the most delicate, clean rose – almost a tea rose in its modesty but with the most subtle floral spice that throws me a little off track. If I heat the scent with my breathing, the warm throwback is that of pure rose, overpowering the jasmine – so true to life it’s like burying your nose deep into the petals – traditional yes, but lovely none the less.

The ever so slight, resinous base has an almost honeyed tobacco like smoke – although extremely subtle underneath the florals.  But even the florals are quiet now, they are a tranquil aura – which is surprising – what started out as a loud jasmine portrait quickly transitions into a landscape, well, not quite a landscape – but Tawaf has a large sense of space, like it’s aroma is simply a smell around you.

Opoponax? I don’t quite get that – the resinous quality is tame, with the honey sweetness more prominent to my nose. I’d even have thought there was a little smidge of labdanum in there, with the smoke mentioned earlier still the merest whisper.

Tawaf is loud, manic and intense on the outside, with all the elements’ characteristics at full volume and hugely expressive of personality; on the inside is the quiet clarity and harmonious balance, peaceful, clean, and secluded – just like the Kaaba it was based upon.  Composed with simplicity, but what a lovely perfume.

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(GIVEAWAY IS NOW CLOSED) 15ml Tawaf – La Via Del Profumo
AND 3 x 5.5ml minis of Tawaf!!

Dominique Dubrana the nose behind La Via Del Profumo has generously gifted me a 15ml bottle of this gorgeous jasmine rich juice to send to one of my lucky readers! So, if anyone is interested, please comment and mention that you would like to be included in the draw – and a lovely bottle of Tawaf could be yours :D For three runner’s up there are 5.5ml mini’s of Tawaf, so lots of opportunities to try this fragrance!

The winners will obviously be picked completely at random, but it would be lovely to include some of your thoughts and discoveries in the world of natural perfumery, or even your favourite jasmine fragrances (for my pleasure alone!) :D

A huge thanks to Mr.Dubrana for this opportunity and for supporting my writing :) (and of course for his lovely work!)

DRAW IS NOW CLOSED. Head over to http://smellythoughts.wordpress.com/2012/09/03/tawaf-giveaway-winners/ to see if you are one of the 4 lucky winners! :D

http://profumo.it

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Serge Lutens – L’Eau, L’Eau Froide

L’Eau opens like a traditional cologne. Bright, transparent citrus – with the inclusion of soapy aldehydes, a little bit of mint, and very subtle clary sage.

That’s about it. There’s a delicate white musk underneath that provides a little bit of throw and the most miniscule amount of warmth. The aldehydes burn off and give way to some ozonic, calone-y style notes, continuing L’Eau’s sense of weightlessness from the opening.

There’s a very subtle spice that is pulled throughout, whether it is just from the sage or not I don’t know – but basically, this is light, fresh, citrus cologne – absolutely nothing to talk about :) The only plus is that it lasts a surprisingly long time, and it manages to never fall into to “bathroom cleaner” territory – which I guess is impressive in itself… Still, a worthless release :)


L’Eau Froide opens with crisp ginger and pepper – an unexpected heated spice, cooled by potent mint leaf. The ginger is like a raw fresh-cut, juicy and spicy – nothing heated resembling baking here.

The spicy opening cools relatively quickly, as a fresh, slightly salted accord coats the L’Eau Froide, and an ever so slightly resinous incense provides a delicate, crisp smoke. Whilst it sounds complicated, it’s execution smells very simplistic – from a distance, or a passing sniff, it yet again resembles a generic cologne. Within ten minutes, that’s exactly what it becomes.

A very clean, translucent vetiver in the base secures the slightly spicy, herbal quality of the opening, whilst the saltiness disappears, leaving behind some aquatic remains. The incense is cool, translucent, and unappetizing – and whilst thankfully avoiding citrus cologne territory, it manages to create something equally dull.

I am keeping an open mind with these, and have read very little about them. I understand the concept was to make an anti-perfume in the sense that this is so different from Lutens’ usual style. The thing is, they are not even good examples of their genre. I’d say “hugely disappointing” – but I’m not disappointed. Easy to forget and never sniff again :)

L’Eau Serge Lutens 50ml – 69 Euros sergelutens.com
L’Eau Froide Serge Lutens 50ml – 69 Euros sergelutens.com

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Vintage: Poison Esprit De Parfum – Christian Dior

Recently a generous friend on Basenotes sent me a huge sample goody bag of vintage juices. Vintage is an area I’ve never explored, and having tried a couple of these now, I feel like it’s an area I can imagine exploring a little more. I don’t think I’ll ever be spending 4 x previous retail price on half a bottle of used juice, but these have definitely been very interesting to try.
For now, I’ll start with one of my favourites of the bunch…

Poison Esprit De Parfum opens with a harsh, medicinal intensity. A clove note pushes to the foreground, along with the rich fruitiness of red and black berries. This spiced berry mix brings to mind the subtle heat of candied cinnamon and a tiny high-pitched screech of anise – a sweet, rich stew that on blind sniff I could’ve easily mistaken for a good Lutens.

After a couple of minutes, the florals present themselves. A creamy tuberose is hidden in the distance, but it pulls that medicinal opening into the heart. There’s rich jasmine sambac in here, not quite indolic but luscious and full bodied like a bouquet – paired with the tuberose, the white florals are syrupy sweet and overwhelming, they take on a honeyed texture that coats the skin in a dense layer of floral juice, rather than a scattering of dated petals. I use “overwhelming” in the best possible way, it’s almost edibly delicious and not at all as loud as I imagined.

A smokiness comes through from the base, a trail of incense? Maybe even sweet myrrh. The resinous undertone definitely brings to mind smoky incense and rich amber, sweetened with a rich vanilla. This oriental is pretty huge – the aroma is that of such a dark lacquer, it becomes almost gothic – I’m kind of craving for a sharp metallic edge to be cutting through the heart of it. Thankfully the sharp incense just about fills this craving.

As it dries down further, a heavy chop of timber sits underneath – sandalwood, maybe even cedar? Something raw, dry and smoky, it hits hard with a masculine edge, keeping the power of the opening throughout the life of Poison Esprit De Parfum. Along with the clove note that I still find prominent, there seems to be some kind of green, herbal mix trailing throughout the spicy floral. Whether it is a hint of rooty vetiver in the base, or there is some other clever work at play – something green and almost culinary seems to hind underneath the syrupy florals.

This is an impressive piece of work, full of textures, pitches and colours – but seamless in its execution. I have actually never smelt the original Poison (but have a little sample of it next to me which I will look at in time), but knowing its popularity, I don’t feel like I have smelt this before. Whilst it smells quite familiar – I can’t imagine it being particularly true to this juice.
The Esprit De Parfum  smells like a classic – as pathetic as that sounds – but it is a high-personality, rich fruity floral with an oriental twist, that I think would be extremely hard not to enjoy unless you have been scarred through its overexposure before. For me, who has never smelt a Poison (knowingly), it’s a delicious scent that I wouldn’t say no to having in my collection.

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Damascena – Keiko Mecheri

Damascena is one hellofa strange fragrance :| On first spritz, there’s a huge, sweet twang of blackcurrant(?), some kind of juicy berry, there must be a ton of aldehydes, a hit of classic rose, and the magic ingredient – ROSE OXIDE – an aromachemical I have been hoping to see used in volume in a fragrance for ages now, I just haven’t found one – well, here it is.

Rose oxide has a very strange smell. It has the merest hint of rose, but is predominantly a bucket load of metallic notes, and a sharp oily, petrol-like smell. Usually, I assume it is used in small quantities to provide a boost, and a realistic freshness to a rose.  Similarly to the high-pitch mentholated notes of tuberose, rose oxide is a natural compound of rose – it’s just unlikely you’ll smell it burying your nose into a rose – or at least very quietly. Here however I find it dominates – pushing this petrol scent to sharper levels than I have smelt in a fragrance before.

So before I carry on with my description on rose oxide- here’s how it is in Damascena. The berry scent settles quickly, de-sweetening the fragrance slightly, but it’s jammy presence is there until the end. This berry juice seems to replace the fruity quality of the rose that doesn’t naturally come forward even a little bit in Damascena. The rose, well, what can I say about the rose. The toxic chemical (which I do love on its own!) dominates for me, and I can just detect the merest hint of freshness underneath.

A slightly dewy green rose-leaf adds a bitter green edge to this fragrance. That’s exactly what Damascena is – bitter-sweet. At times I mistake this green edge for bay leaf, but maybe it is just a natural part of the roses used. Still, an oily-metallic fluid soils the florals and fruit, thankfully quietening to a point where it doesn’t feel like I’m having scissors rammed up my nose like in The Dead Zone. Now, I sound like I’m being cruel – anyone who knows my taste will know this is EXACTLY the sort of thing I love :D I just don’t know how no-one else online seems to be reporting this hugely industrial presence! Anyway, yes, I really enjoy the piercingly intense opening and robotic heart of Damascena – whilst it is a little too much for me to wear right now, the smell is hilariously enjoyable.

The drydown is where Damascena becomes a safer fragrance. The fruit burns off, the rose is still there, along with a hint of muskiness to keep it attached to the skin – with the petrol heat burnt off, the metallic edge still coats the fragrance but at a much tamer level. I don’t know if it’s the dirty edge of the musk, but I get an earthy, ever so slightly fungal aroma, whispering underneath the rose in the drydown which helps keep it interesting from start to finish. What it leaves with is a trace of a classical, fruity rose, a huge contrast to what it once was.

All in all, Damascena is a fabulously fun fragrance, it is listed as a soliflore – but to me it is an extremely avant-garde one. I find it to be the Tubereuse Criminelle of rose soliflores. Not only does it primarily smell of petrol and metal, the damp rose devoid of fruit is paired with a blackcurrant so flourescent it makes me squint.
I don’t think I’d wear this, but I’m sure when I revisit it, I’ll end up with a bottle! It has ticked a box in my fragrance journey checklist at least :)
So thank you Steve for that sample – it’s fantastic :D I got much more than I bargained for with that one, I hope my review doesn’t put you off your “fresh garden” scent :P

Damascena 75ml EDP Keiko Mecheri – $115 Luckyscent

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Tom Of Finland – Etat Libre D’Orange

Thanks to my glorious pal Steve over at The Scented Hound, I have a big bag of smelly goodies in front of me and didn’t know where to begin. I thought I’d take it easy and start here… actually jumping ahead of myself, recently reviewed Love by By Kilian was in this mix… anyway, I have tried Tom Of Finland before, but never on skin. So this is an easy place to start :)


Tom Of Finland is a gorgeous leather from the start. It opens with a fizzy aldehyde, similar to that used in Rien. It isn’t soapy, but texturizes the top notes of lemon so that they almost become a bright aura, rather than citric.

The leather is present from the start – a really soft, luxurious suede, fluffy and smooth – similar in style (but much quieter) to the leather used in Cuir Ottoman.
Once the aldehydes settle, up comes a hit of safraleine – an aromachemical that smells like a relatively flat (but nice!) leathery saffron. When I smell the aldehydes and then the safraleine I can’t help but thing of my beloved Comme Des Garcons EDP 2011, and then when I think of this, I detect a muskiness to Tom Of Finland – the similarities become quite uncanny. However, Tom Of Finland is pulled much more into it’s leather territory with the lack of floral notes (I’m not counting the subtle hint of powdery iris in here) and it’s suede note pushed into the foreground.

The suede note becomes plasticky, with an almost vinyl-like feel; Comme Des Garcons Skai is brought to mind – and underneath that is a papery note of old books, similar to that in Desperado by Smell Bent (which is also a leather saffron)… oh man I keep making comparisons, sorry!
The thing is, Tom Of Finland does smell like a mashup of other things, but it does manage to hold its own identity – just.

A slightly “off” amber, and a hint of salty vetiver in the base, along with that white musk from the heart, pull Tom Of Finland into a few moments I find a little off-putting. The leather falls very flat, the saffron turns slightly when it comes in contact with the “gray amber” and salty vetiver. Whilst it actually still smells like a good, synthetic almost avant-garde style dry down, the mashup of ingredients seems to distort the flow, if this makes any sense…
However, it does manage to pull itself back together in the drydown, where the suede remains longer than expected paired with a soft vanilla, vetiver and a hint of smoke. The vetiver/vanilla bringing to mind Fat Electritian by ELdO…

Anyway, I do enjoy most parts of Tom Of Finland – it goes a little off track for me about half an hour into the fragrance where I don’t enjoy it quite so much – I find it quite vegetal. But I’d happily recommend it to someone looking for a light leather. I don’t think it quite fits the image being presented, it needed a whole bunch of birch tar, pump up that plastic note and add a hint of the iodine-like metallic note of Secretions Magnifique in the base and it would have been perfect! Still, a nice safe fragrance :)

Tom Of Finland 50ml Etat Libre D’Orange – £59.50 Escentual

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Annick Goutal – Eau d’Hadrien, Eau Du Sud

Bitter grapefruit, fresh lemons and aldehydes open the fresh Eau d’Hadrien. The aldehydes add that usual sparkling quality – throwing the citrus off the skin in a bucket of freshness. Not too green, but full of rich citric juices, Eau d’Hadrien’s bitter edge and the sourness of the lemons are classically presented in a tradition eau de cologne style – only it packs a little more punch.

The fragrance is relatively linear, with a lovely cypress – ever so slightly medicinal, green and “sappy”. It pulls the astringent quality of the fleeting grapefruit into the heart so that the lemon doesn’t sit on its own.

A little soapy – a little bit like bathroom cleaner (due to obvious associations), but charming and simplistic none the less.
Some patchouli joins in during the late drydown – not so rich and earthy as I’d hoped but instead clean and scrubbed, paired with the citrus notes it reminds me of the patchouli used in CB’s Patchouli Empire – I didn’t like that…

Within half an hour all the citrus has vanished, what is left is an ever-so-slightly musky, soapy patchouli, with a delicate metallic edge. It’s a skin scent, and a slight off one at that.

What more is there to say – it’s a nice-ish example of a cologne.

A cool, herbal breeze wafts up from Eau Du Sud. The subtly camphorous vapour of fresh-cut mint leaves, gives way to a beautiful note of basil and citrus. Sour lemon rind, with hints of green, paired with the menthol and basil gives of a wonderfully traditional vibe and the green herbals add an edge that’s a little more interesting than Eau d’Hadrien.

All harsh edges smooth out very quickly, and Eau Du Sud becomes a little more “standard”. Still, even though the mint burns off relatively quickly, it’s cool effect is left on the skin – bringing to mind salty sea air.
The citrus also tames quickly as, what I think is, a smidge of oakmoss comes forward. The herbals also retreat relatively quickly – but thankfully pull the opening away from cleaning product territory and therefore it stays that way.

The drydown as with Eau d’Hadrien comes around quickly, with the citrus gradually vanishing along with the fresh herbal notes. A very quiet, sherbert-y floral becomes present, I mistook it for violet at first but it turns out jasmine is listed? I don’t quite get that but hey. I know this is not what you’re supposed to do, but on my second wearing of this, I rubbed the fragrance between my wrists hard about 20 minutes into the fragrance, and this sherberty-floral is far more present, it evaporates instantly but is the quick glimpse is the most interest part of Eau Du Sud – it’s a shame they didn’t amplify this hidden sour/fizzy/floral quality.

This EDT doesn’t last too long, but it is nice enough whilst it lasts – the most interesting of the two fragrances :)

Eau D’Hadrien 100ml EDT Annick Goutal – £72 House Of Fraser
Eau Du Sud 100ml EDT Annick Goutal – £72 House Of Fraser

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Love – By Kilian

Love opens with sweet rich candies. A hugely synthetic but glorious orange sherbert accord – pounded off the skin by flourescent aldehydes. A sweet honey, sticky bubblegum-like jasmine, bright red berries – it’s a full-blown fruity floral – exaggerated so much it’s impossible not to swoon over.

The complicated sugar rich opening falls into the “pink bubblegum” category, and this Bazooka Joe style chewy goodness stays true throughout the heart. The florals get more intense, with the jasmine now becoming the leading player with some honey drizzled orange blossom. A dense, clean rose bouquet keeps it all solid and a little “perfumey”, just to keep Love teetering on the edge of maturity. A rich iris is subtle, but definitely there – providing more of a powdery texture and adding an ever so slightly savoury-floral edge.

Once the screechy aldehydes (not the soapy kind) have burnt off, the sugar turns from dense bubblegum into soft, chewy cotton candy. It’s bright, fluffy, and yes – pink. As if it needed sweetening more, some rich vanilla comes in (which thankfully I get along with after recently had a reallllly hard time with vanilla) – and a bunch of white musk to throw it off the skin a little more. It’s a huge perfume – loud, grotesquely flirtacious, but completely harmless.

Love remains pretty linear, it’s a fluffy marshmallow full of sugar, caramel, vanilla, the fruity twang of berries and a hugely playful floral bouquet in the middle. Sure – we have seen this kind of thing before – but here it is blown to gigantic proportions, and executed fantastically!
The drydown on the skin is long, sweet (if I need to say that any more), and true to the opening. The rose becomes the lead and it reminds me (the tiniest bit) of the sugar-coated rose petals of Parfumerie Generale’s gorgeous Brulure de Rose, with some pollen rich orange blossom on the side. It starts with a crisp, cavity inducing crack and breaks into bouncy, creamy yumminess – like a creme brulee!
A perfect example of the fruity/floral/gourmand genre – I love Love :D

Love 50ml EDP By Kilian – $235 Luckyscent

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