I am going to start with a hyperbole. In my opinion, Papillon Perfumery’s “Salome” is the best perfume release of the year. And it looks like I am not alone. Look at all these glowing reviews:
“…a unique signature that is refreshingly fearless in a day and age where sanitised scents are both the majority, and the norm. Salome dares to be raunchy. She dares to be gutsy. She dares to be beautiful, and most importantly, she dares not to be too preoccupied with other people’s opinion of her. Salome is fearless” – The Candy Perfume Boy
“Salome is a big production animalic chypre that reminded me of YSL Y and Jean Desprez’s Bal a Versailles, yet Salome feels smoother, creamier, more seamlessly blended, and more classically timeles…” – Bonkers About Perfume
“There’s a lot more than dirtiness going on with Salome. In fact, it’s really rather beautiful.” – Odiferesse
“Salome has magnificent tonality and develops very carefully into a lingering leather chypré with echoes of rutting vintage Diorling and the original un-violated Mitsouko.” – The Silver Fox
“I inhale and my heart beats a little faster. It’s enough to make even the most jaded perfume lover gasp” – Olfactoria’s Travel
I have worn now Salome for the past three days – seriously, when do I do that – and in each wearing, I find something new to rave about it. This is a perfume with a capital P, and it shows as I have yet to see a negative review of it from the perfume community (Even those with reservations cop to it being a well-done perfume) This is a scent that evokes the classics. like Bal a Versailles, or My Sin. There’s something in it that’s very “now,” too – this is a rich, velvety fragrance that envelopes you. People always point out that this has cumin – and yes, it does – but it also has white indolic florals. There’s a ton of jasmine here, and I even get rose in the background whispering. There are leather, tobacco, and musky notes in the heart, and that gives this a cashmere-like feel. It’s just stunning – I catch myself sniffing my arm every ten minutes or so, and the trail it leaves from my scarf is a sexy trail. I remember initially sniffing this on my birthday weekend – a hot humid day – and Salome bloomed instantly. But isn’t that what real perfumes do? They bloom? I remember I was trying on various scents that day, and I kept on coming back to this, and eventually got a bottle. But I am not gonna lie – there’s an animalistic musk in here that could turn people off, and there is that dreaded cumin, which, as a note, took the longest time for me to get used to. But the over all effect is smoky, and sensual, and yes it exudes sex. This is perfume mixed with a hint of danger. And there’s love here, but there’s also lust. Sweaty, swarthy, obsessive lust.
People who do not “get” this probably will never get the kind of perfumes of the golden age. That’s fine – I will be a proud member of the exclusive club of people who do.