Knowing is a good - great, perhaps - floral chypre of the late '80s which bears a distinctive fruity-citrus breeze together with a floral feel tending more towards the delicate-soapy-sweet side, all together wrapped around a great, juicy, refined rose accord. All the "dark side" is there too - benzoin, civet, oak moss, aldehydes - but overall, at least for the first couple of hours, Knowing is as much carnal as lively, carrying a subtle sort of fizzy, invigorating and graceful spring feel. Which is enough to make it stand out of the crowd of chypres; not a gourmand but lightly fruity and sweet, not a "femme fatale chypre" but with all it needs to smell feminine, sensual and sophisticated enough. And not just a floral scent centered on rose. Plus, the evolution is subtle but really well engineered; after a while, the oak moss note starts to emerge over the sweeter–brighter notes, dirtening the overall liveliness with its woody-mossy sour dryness—thus enhancing the gloomier side of rose. A nice twist for sure. A perfect candidate for any "high-quality-chypres" rotation and a must try for rose fans.
Knowing is a rose so big that a family of four could take up residence inside it and still have room to entertain. You know it comes from the 1980s: never before or since have floral scents been as loud. Knowing is to rose what Giorgio, Amarige and Poison are to tuberose. A scent like Joy is feeble next to Knowing, and of the older florals only Fracas comes to mind as matching its flamboyance.
For all its heft, Knowing is still a great rose. It may be big, but it’s highly articulated, filled with interesting detail, and surprisingly well proportioned. Smelling Knowing navigate its way around being too sweet, too heady, too soapy, or too fruity is like watching a circus elephant pluck a daisy by the stem. How can anything so huge be so poised and dexterous? Knowing will appeal to those who love Pierre Montale’s grand rose scents, and I might even go so far as suggest it as a less exotic, though much more affordable, rosy alternative to Amouage Lyric. In case my description leaves any doubt, Knowing fills the room and lasts forever. There’s no turning back once you press that sprayer!
This is a wonderfully old-fashioned scent, smelling like the latest it could possibly have been created would have been in the 1950s. It is a fragrant green floral chypre that is extremely well balanced. There is a big rose at the center, but it never screams at you, it only insinuates itself to support the other florals.
Top notes: Coriander, Neroli
Middle notes: Rose, Jasmine, Lily, Cardamom, Cedarwood, Vetiver
Base notes: Patchouli, Oak Moss, Honey, Musk, Amer, Civet
One of Lauder's finest and highly recommended.
I couldn't buy a bottle fast enough. The infatuation was wild and delicious. Just released, yes I knew everything. Half way through the bottle we encountered irrevocable differences, I began to smell apples during the 'everything scented apple' phase. And that was it, I gave it away. Sometimes, at the perfume counter, I give it a whirl, but it doesn't rock my world. Now it's somebody that I used to know.
It's not you, you're wonderful, it's me.
An amalgam of all the best chypres, and more than the sum of its parts, Knowing is among Kerleo's best creations and Lauder's finest releases. Only the most minute dab of the vintage parfum or edp is ever needed to bask in this glorious scent all day long complete with alluring sillage; oh Lauder's glorious economy of scent, as Knowing could be a great Patou with ease or could pass for Caron or vintage Dior at four times the price.
The rose chypre par excellence, this rose is dry and evil, seductive but menacing and grim. The odd fruits are Dionysian offerings, nothing ripe or sweet about them. Knowing is crypto-pagan but overtly 90s working woman austere. The Paulina Porizkova commercial from the early 90s portrays a time much like today's: full of upheaval, solemnity, uncertainty, goofy as the ultimate fall into solipsism in the ad is. Knowing is just another perfume, but when I wear it, its strength, boldness, seeming olfactive translation of staring difficulty right in the face and prevailing, gives me a kind of solidity and feeling of steely grace. Knowing is somewhat industrial, sky scrapers and platform heels, but the oakmoss and civet keep on whispering about witchy secrets and sex. There is a divinity and untouchable simplicity to how absolutely right Knowing is when used very sparingly: hours of style and mystery.