I’ve been waiting to sniff ‘Une Amourette’ for the longest time since I read about it last year. It’s a collaboration between fashion designer Roland Mouret and Eta Libre d’Orange. I love the exclusivities of collaborations, and I know that if there’s one house where you can be creative and out-there, it would be Eld’O.
It’s my new favorite perfume of the new year, and I know January has barely started but this one would be pretty hard to beat. Apparently Mouret has described this scent as ‘the smell of skin after sex,’ and really, if this was the case, I would have more sex because the perfume just smells so divine.
It starts with a big patchouli note, but it’s a gauzy patchouli. That is not a surprise, since the perfume is signed by Daniela Anders, who does all the gauzy Prada perfume. there’s the freshness of neroli in the opening, and it is not your usual juicy kind – this one is tempered and transparent. There’s something spicy there (black pepper, amber) but again the effect is kind of a silhouette – it’s delicate but not too flighty. If this scent was a color, I would describe it as gold – not the flashy kind but a nice understated one. Mouret has also said that there is an animalistic quality to the perfume, and I don’t quite get it, and that’s fine, because on my skin, the richness and opulence takes center stage. On his Spring 2018 show, he sprayed these in between the thighs of his models, because he wants this to be worn that way. No complaints here.
My perfumes are in storage right now because of my big move (I am living off my samples, believe it or not) but if I had the luxury of space, i would get a bottle right now. At some point, I know I have to have this, it’s going to be just a matter of when \.
It’s a new year and here is the new release from Atelier Cologne – Iris Rebelle. I saw this while browsing through Sephora, so it must be one of Atelier’s ‘common’ releases, and I do like the pinkish-purplish bottle. I thought to myself, I can wear this scent on Mondays.
Obviously, it is an iris perfume, and this is a soily, rooty iris, freshly picked from the ground. I have seen a lot of people describe a ‘carrot’ note and I do get why they do. I think what they got is the soil that’s embedded with the iris flower.
I love iris based perfumes, and this one has a surprising twist – it is mixed with a citrusy orange blossom note. It’s ‘fresh,’ and I am surprised that I like it because normally, I despise scents that smell ‘fresh.’ But the orange blossom here is nice and refreshing, not the normally indolic type. It stays all the way through the drydown, and here I am sniffing my wrist hours after, and it is still bright and sunshine-y. I wish they offered this in their 1 oz bottle, but they only have two choices – the massive (for collectors) 100 ml. But, they also have the 10 ml travel spray for $32.00 and that is enough of a concession.
I wrote unfavorable about Jo Malone English Oak and Red Currant (here ) Jo Malone released two English Oak perfumes at that time, and I am a little more favorable about English Oak and Hazelnut. As a matter of fact, I got a small bottle of this. This release has almost the same base of the woodsy oak, but the hazelnut note was a little more appealing to me then.
I am wearing this today again, and I am not as impressed. The oak is there, for sure, and the woodsy vibe is fine. But, I find it a little screechy now, and a little too generic department store masculine wood. I feel like I have smelled this before, and while I do not totally regret the purchase, I don’t know if I would ever reach for this when I am looking for something to wear.
My favorite perfume release from 2016 was Salome, so of course for 2017 I am already putting Papillon Perfumes’ new release, Dryad, as a finalist even if just in theory. And it looks like I am right – I have just sampled this (I know I am late) and think it’s already *my* best of the year, although admittedly I have not been as active a sampler this year.
Dryad opens with galbanum – but there’s a moss, and leathery mix into it that is very appealing. But even though those notes sound very heavy, Dryad projects light – it is not intrusive and acts more in the background than anything else. It also has that ‘glow’ feel – kind of like a musk scent that you are always aware – this perfume makes its presence felt all the time. There’s an elegance roughness in it – I smell something resinous and slightly vegetal there, all in the best possible sense. I was wearing this and a friend leaned in to say something and said “You smell very nice, and it’s very you,’ and I do wonder what kind of ‘me’ he smelled. I think it’s because I wear all these orientals and a lot of friends associated ‘old world perfume’ with me. I take that as a compliment and my friend’s remark as one as well. I think a full bottle of Dryad is almost a given – and I can imagine cold winter days and night wearing this, as it has that soft cashmere feeling.
Tom Ford, of course, is credit with starting the ‘oud’ craze when used that note for M7, his men’s fragrance when he was the Creative Director for YSL. So when he created his ouds for his Private Collection, they all become instant hits. ‘Oud Wood’ from his Private Collection is probably one of his brand’s most popular fragrance – I often hear people say it’s their favorite. Maybe that’s why I don’t own it? from his ouds, the one that appealed to me most was Fleur Oud, and that is the one I own. It has been a while since I sniffed Oud WOod, but I remember it being a solid oud fragrance.
So when I was at Luckyscent one time, I jokingly asked how was Oud Wood Intense. Everyone raved about it, saying that it is much better than the original. They gave me a sample without me asking for one, with them saying ‘You must try it.’
I am trying it now. And yes, it is good. On my skin, it is just plain leather – fleshy, rich, opulent leather. To be honest, I don’t even get the woods, nor the oud here, because what stands out most is this beautiful leather note. But for a Private Collection scent, I am somewhat asking, quoting Peggy Lee, “Is that all there is?” I kind of think this would have fit better with his Signature Collection, although I do understand why he would want to make a flanker of one his most popular titles.
If there was one note that was big for 2017, I would say it would be tuberose. It seemed like everyone was using it, and I am not complaining, mind you, because over the years I have become a big white floral fanatic. I had previously written about how I liked Amouage Figament Men – it’s quirly and weird and interesting – so I went and tried the ‘female’ version of it and, alas, it is a tuberose scent.
It’s a spicy one, and it opens with a szechuan note. It’s on the hot side, and on a cold day like today, was kind of welcome. I get white flowers in the burst (gardenia, I read from the notes list) before the tuberose kicks in – and it’s a transparent tuberose that is a bit watery (not aquatic) Then the fragrance limps on me after that. On the notes list, I seethe emergence of orange blossom, jasmine and a lysylang (a mild ylang ylang, apparently) and they just blend to a generic white flower dry down. I thought the perfume showed a lot of promise, and I find disappointed that it petered down. I thought for sure that since the male version was interesting, this female one would just be as appealing, but for me, it’s a miss. And with the Amouage price tag, it’s a big miss for me.
Commes de Garcons, as a fragrance house, is always unique. They can be a little bit weird, at most times nutty, but never ever boring. I guess that could also be a perfect description for Rei Kawakubo’s fashion for the line, so the fragrance aesthetic is on-brand for the house. I don’t always love the scents, but I always want to have them, because as a collector, they always speak *something* to me.
Concrete is based on, guess what, concrete. When the perfume opens, it doesn’t smell like concrete though. What I initially get is the sandalwood, as promised from their description of the perfume. But this sandalwood smells dense, and creamy, and even milky. For me, who doesn’t like the ‘smell’ of milk, it is off-putting. It kind of makes me wanna throw up (Estee Lauder’s Sensuous has a similar effect on me, as it has a similar ‘milky’ note)
I never recover from that. I know there is something called ‘rose oxide’ that that is supposed to tie everything together, but that, mixed with this milky note, does nothing but makes my stomach churn. And while once in a while that whiff of sandalwood is indeed quite pleasant, in the end, I just have to concede that this perfume is not for me.