To my great disappointment, this fragrance is discontinued and I can’t find it anywhere… here’s why I’m growing to love it
Dry Clean opens with a tenacious, sharp, soapy aldehyde structure. It’s straightforward and overpowering, intensely synthetic, not at all smoothed out with any florals, greenery, woods, herbal notes… whatever… it is like the opening of Stephen Jones stripped of it’s violet/clove. Pure. White. Soap. Gross right? Erm… well. What there is going on underneath, is a bizarre chemical overload that smells like a mishmash of the Odeur fragrances… a hint of incense? A bit of something “fuzzy”? A clean linen smell undoubtedly, the scent of steam from an iron and warm fabric. Stupid I know, but it’s literal, trust me. It smells like the hot scent of fabric straight after running an iron over it. Complete freshness and little else.
So I guess that’s the appealing part… but what I love is the fact that it uses aldehydes as a leading role, but developing into very little. Similarly to the Odeur’s, it allows a minimalistic combination to be interpreted as a million things – only with less ridiculous marketing (Dry Clean is actually pretty spot on – no “dust on a hot light bulb” here…).
But, after all this, it still feels classical. The aldehydic structure is familiar, referencing many great aldehydic feminine florals, grand classics like Chanel No.5 (obviously). As a result it’s hard to deny that Dry Clean feels strangely refined… elegant even. It is also totally genderless. It is a perfect blob of a fragrance, or a “smell” we’ll say.
Ok so there’s a teenie bit of rose, and maybe a smidge of lily of the valley. A cool mint similar to Odeur 53… but you can forget all that… it’s aldehydes galore. It’s easy to dismiss Dry Clean, as I did briefly on first sniff. Once you’ve smelt aldehydes on their own already, and used in beautiful compositions, they seem a little lifeless on there own. But the tenacity of this one means that it won’t give up on your skin – and I found it forcing me to find some intelligence in it. I actually find it the best of the Synthetic Series without a doubt, being very underwhelmed by Tar, Garage and Skai (much to my upset). Dry Clean is nothing complicated, but it is a little clever, a little weird and a little bit beautiful.