I don't generally believe in the concept of a "signature scent". And yet that's exactly just what this has turned out to be. It isn't even my absolute number one for just smelling wonderful. Regardless of how rarely I use it, that spot can only ever belong to vintage Opium.
When I first smelled it I didn't care for it, didn't dislike it, but most importantly I just couldn't forget it. That alone says a lot for a piece of art - it engages and challenges the person sampling it.
I categorically disagree with anyone claiming that you have to like (eating) liquorice to enjoy this perfume. While I detest the edible variant, I consider a well-done liquorice fragrance note extremely intriguing. In fact, many things are not equally suited to being both good scents and flavours.
About two years and several revisits after first smelling this I was finally ready to make it my own. While the liquorice is certainly prominent, it is quite different from the edible variety. The composition is quite dark, both herbal and earthy, as well as very comfortable to wear. At the same time it has a strange transparent clarity to it - I'm afraid the original advert got it 100% right.
I have to admit I'm becoming susceptible to the dark fairytale this perfume and its bottle are telling, quite an admission in my old age.
In a sense things come full circle on the Opium reference - both these perfumes go far beyond being perfumes. They have a story behind them and in them.
I find myself longing for this fragrance more often than any other in my collection when it comes to selecting one. So far I'm only familiar with the original version. I haven't yet tried the reformulated one. Apparently it's a fairly worthy successor. I may well sniff it out. But I sleep better for knowing I have a sizeable stash of the original.
10th March, 2015 (last edited: 18th March, 2015)
I got this perfume about 3 months ago without having smelled it. Whoa! Perfume with a vanilla base (yuk) that I had not smelled and I am now spraying this concoction on me. It took me about a week of trying it but I genuinely like it. The vanilla is buried under the other notes and is not noticeable to my nose at all. I think it is very unique and actually quite a beautiful dry down. If I could change anything I would make it slightly less sweet. But it is far better than most of the department store brands many of which dry down to the same old thing no matter the brand or the cost. LL distinguishes itself in that way. Nothing else smells like it to me. Not many brands I can say that about right now.
Genre: Woody Oriental
The soft anise accord that opens Lolita Lempicka is at once less cloyingly sweet and better balanced than that of its masculine counterpart, as good an argument as any for the motto “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.” The scent moves on in a spicy-sweet, woody oriental direction that I find just too dry to qualify as truly “gourmand.” (This is a good thing, mind you.) Part of the appeal in this central accord is an almost peppery kick that emerges from the juxtaposed anise and woods.
While much is made of Lolita Lempicka’s being a gloss on the original Angel, I don’t feel it has the same gaudy, overbearing, and borderline-crass character. Not that Lolita Lempicka is subtle, but it doesn’t hit me like a freight train, as Angel often does. What accounts for the difference, I suspect, is the absence in Lolita Lempicka of Angel’s stupendously lewd, rank patchouli note. The comparatively civilized blend of woods that Lolita Lempicka offers in its place makes for a much more comfortable, if perhaps less startlingly original, scent. By comparison, Lolita Lempicka is also more spicy and less sweet than Angel, which goes a long way toward making it convincing as a unisex scent. I would certainly much sooner wear this than the crude, bombastic boys’ version. The peculiarly nutty vetiver, vanilla, and soft wood drydown is likewise superior to the slobbering, gap toothed woody amber mess that closes out Lolita Lempicka au Masculin.
I am very pleased with the scent, at some point it reminds me in a strange way of Rochas' "Alchimie".
The bottle is strange, I don't quite get the point here. Is it designed for Mac fans? For Snow White? For the wicked queen? I think I have seen it 1000 times before and I never tried it, only because of the apple shaped bottle. Why is it an apple??
If people dont reckon this to be a the top rank of modern perfumery, at least they should tribute it with endless respect...
Where to begin?
Its like a fluffy cloud of cotton-candy which imbodies all the smells of an old candystore. Its flooding in this fresh air, having fun drifting on the wind. Its salty-anisic opening thats the main theme, remains presents till the end of the dry-out, passing, meeting and melting with a lot of different tones of scent, that behave in a shrizofrenic kind of way. Is it winegum or banana-sweets? Bitter almond or sweet marzepein? Salty vetiver or salty patchouli? Crumbled chocolate or grinded coffee? Is it elmo's glue or petrolic cedarwood? Cool metal or unripe rose? I even smell that sticky caramelic mouthfeel while eating a cotton-candy, its a very physical smell...or it could be the undertone of a lavender-oil...
This mysterious way of behaving gives it great charme and humor. Different than Angel, that mainly focused on the chocolate and edible kind of a brushed clean sweety patchouli, Menardo takes the brilliant angle of the contra-junction and integration of the salty anisic-note against the chocolate-praline-gourmand accord. This way the perfume stays fresh and breezy, almost like there is hedione and calone in its innerwork. It surely has a really light and airy feel to it.
All this makes this perfume unquestionably relevant and unique. In my humble opinion the most original perfume of the last 20 years. Maybe overshadowed and inspired by Angel but definitely in a league of its own. Time after time, its always a surprise to smell this one and it always manages to put a smile on my face.
23rd April, 2014 (last edited: 04th May, 2014)