But First, Coffee (Perfume Thoughts: Coffee Break, Maison Martin Margiela)

375x500.55926I have been searching for a nice coffee perfume, but I still haven’t found one that I like. I am wearing ‘Coffee Break’ by Replica (Maison Martin Margiela) and I wish this was it, but sadly, no. In fact, I am a bit underwhelmed by this, as with other ones I have tested in the same line. ‘Coffee Break’ does start out with a coffee note, but it is nice and sweetened, and just a tad creamy. Then it very very quickly becomes lavender. And the lavender just stays with me, and the ‘coffee’ note fades into the distance. There’s still some cream here, and perhaps some vanilla, but all my nose gets is the lavender. The materials seem to be of good quality, but it’s all just bland… and blah.

A Lazy Effort (Perfume Thoughts: Lazy Sunday Morning, Maison Martin Margela)

375x500.20542Don’t you love things that evoke moods? I do. On things lazy, the perfect artistic take for me is Harold Arlen’s ‘Lazy Afternoon,’ which perfectly captures a single moment. I had some hope for ‘Lazy Sunday Morning,’ from the Martin Margela Replica collection. I like the idea, and it made me think what ‘Lazy Sunday Morning’ feel for me.  I think of just laying on a comfy chair, maybe a little chilled and enveloped by a cashmere throw as I read a book and sip my drink. There’s a sense of calm and serenity there.

The perfume? I can admit it’s well done that did not skimp on the quality of ingredients –  a gauzy fruity floral of fruits and flowers, in this case, some pear and lily of the valley. It’s almost subtle, but really not. It gets drowned in aldehydes, not a bad thing for me, but it does make it smell a little on the ‘old-fashioned side.’ The drydown is sheer musks and sheer woods that blend all of the smells together.

It’s okay.  I can appreciate it and wear it to the office. But nowadays, just okay isn’t good enough for me. I can mouth off a whole slew of designer perfumes that are similar for much less price point. This perfume is signed by Louis Turner, who also did Glow by J Lo, and that is a better deal for more or less the same sensoral experience.

Sticky Sweet Fruit (PerfumeThoughts: Mutiny, Maison Martin Margiela)

maison-margiela-mutiny-402x538Where have you gone, Martin Margiela? I was at the pop-up Margiela fragrance store at Century City and as I perused through their fragrance offerings, I thought to myself – when did this brad get so…generic? Their scents are all so familiar, so rote, so common that it really isn’t so in tune with what the house used to represent.  I couldn’t find one that I liked enough to wear, or even give real estate skin to.

The Sales Associate asked me, ‘Have you tried Mutiny? It’s my favorite.’   I said no, and she showed me the bottle, which I admit, is very beautiful. ‘Let me give you a sample,’ she said.

I wore it the next day, and…I am still unmoved. This is standard department store white floral, and I have seen it be compared to Viktor & Rolf’s Bon Bon, which I think is very apt. Very syrupy orange-y top note, with dense fruit – I smell a grape/peach/pair combo – and on my skin, it’s so syrupy I was glad I was wearing it on a cold day.  This is definitely a sticky and sweet one, akin to canned fruit. I don’t really hate it, but I thought Margiela could do much much better (Bring back, ‘Untitled,’ for example)

Random Beach (Perfume Thoughts: Beach Walk, Replica by Maison Martin Margiela)

Processed with Rookie CamIt looks like summer will be here very soon, and it makes me think of the beach. I love bodies of water, and I crave it more now that I live in the desert. I was at Sephora and here they had all the ‘beach’ scents front and centre, and they are prominently featuring ‘Beach Walk’ by Maison Martin Margeila. I remember sniffing this a while back, and perhaps I was unimpressed because I remember nothing about it besides the fact it is a beach scent.

It is, and a very ordinary one. You can tell that the it’s done well, it’s blended perfectly and the listed notes – bergamot, pink pepper, ylang ylang, coconut milk, musk, cedarwood, benzoin – sound interesting on paper. It’s supposedly inspired by ” a walk in Corsican beach in 1972,” and I ask why that year? What do I smell?  I  get basic suntan lotion with a kind of baby-powder accord. It smells good, and it lasts long, and I like it, but I ask: Is that all there is to this. Priced at $160, I wish it had something more. I can think of a number of beach scents at a fraction of that price, and some of them are a lot more interesting.  Just the other day I was raving about ‘At The Beach’ from Bath & Body Works. I dare say that is even more interesting that this. Perhaps I should write about that.