This is a beautiful floral oriental with an abundance of wonderful fruit notes. I love opulent perfumes that carry me back in memory to the pre-IFRA days, and Visa - while it has been reformulated, like every other fragrance - fills that bill. It's warm, gracious, enveloping and inviting, sweet but not smarmy. I think it's lovely.
I have a sample of Visa de Robert Piuguet Eau de Parfum from their fragrance counter at the shop. It's great: sweet, powdery, floral, slightly feminine, but more unisex. I like the rose in this. I am starting to embrace the Piguet brand. I have a mini of Bandit I really like, and now wearing this one is impressing me.
18th July, 2016 (last edited: 19th July, 2016)
I am reviewing Visa as came from a sample vial with an unofficial, untraceable plain-print sticker wrapped round it. It just reads, 'Piguet Visa EDP'. For the sake of likelihood I assume it is the 2007 version but my only certainty about it is in the notes.
Visa opens with a ripe peach and plum duo which I recall from many scents from the early 90's. They are couched comfortably in the lactonic folds of vanilla and sandalwood, laced with a dry, green moss. Once the moss has established itself I am reminded immediately of Mitsuoko EDP, only this is at once simpler and plusher. Hints of citrus and white florals insinuate themselves, as a quiet, leathery scent hides in the powder, keeping the composition from spilling into edible territory. So what I get overall is very much an old-school milky chypre with a much smaller presence of base notes, allowing the softer, rosy and juicy tones a little more time to shine. Is this a good thing? I can see Visa as being an intermediary stepping stone either to or from the classics, potentially helping the younger crowd to safely dabble in oakmoss and feminine leathers, or to give classicists some wearable middle ground that fits more in with the modern scheme.
Visa is a perfectly proportioned chimera of styles, and almost a surefire delight for lovers of peach. As soon as I know which Visa I am talking about for certain I'll be sure to let you know.
I like the opening of Visa, it's very fruity and airy. But after a short period of time, it goes very heavy and vanillary. Visa had me at ,,Hello!'' with a very peachy, warm and sweet opening, but lost me when it turned too powdery. I could detect sandalwood at dry-down, though peach was nowhere to be found.
Maybe it’s old age creeping up on me, but I’m beginning to appreciate fruit-heavy fragrances in a way I have never done before. Key to unlocking a whole category that you've previously dismissed is, of course, finding one example of its form that steals your heart before you even know what’s happening – for me, that fragrance was Robert Piguet’s Visa. I ordered a sample of it as something as an afterthought (I was exploring the house of Piguet and didn’t want to leave one off the list), and let is sit in my sample box for over a year before finally trying it out in a fit of boredom one night.
Well, that sneaky Visa – she stole my heart. The first sign that I was in love was that I started hiding the sample from myself, popping it into drawers and into cereal boxes and so on, in a vain effort to slow me down. That didn't work and I bought a decant from a friend. That had barely arrived at my house when I decided that I needed a whole bottle, such was my anxiety that I would someday be without Visa in my household. This is crazy behavior, by the way. As for Visa itself – well, one could argue that it’s nothing revolutionary. But for me, its fantastic peach and plum notes were my aha! moment, when I realized that fruit could and should be “my thing”.
The fruit notes in Visa are remarkable – white peaches, plums, and pears that smell true to life without smelling the slightest bit loud or fake. Darkened at the edges by the burnt sugar of immortelle and wrapped up tenderly in a powdery benzoin blanket, Visa’s peaches and plums feels bathed in autumnal dusk compared to the strobe-lit glare of most other fruity-floral fragrances. There’s a certain winey, “stained-glass” glow to the stone fruit that makes me ridiculously happy.
When I visualize the type of person that might wear Visa as her signature fragrance, I see a sexy librarian with glasses and a knowing smile. As deep and as comforting as a well-powdered bosom, Visa presents the wearer with a restrained take on loud fruit-chocolate-gourmand “chypres” such as Angel and Chinatown. Here there is no excess, no loud notes playing out of tune, and thankfully, no fruit loop-flavored syrup anywhere to be found.
Everything in Visa is set at hush levels. Even the leather note is gentle – a buffed grey suede rather than a twangy new shoe. The suede and the slight drinking chocolate powder feel in the base offers a gentle cushion for the fruit notes, and a dignified end to the story. Half the pleasure I derive from wearing Visa lies in trying to guess what category it falls into. Actually, it straddles several at once – the fruity-floral, leather chypre, fruit leather, gourmand, and maybe even the dreaded fruitchouli. But far being a brainless fruity, sweet thing you use to stun the opposite sex into submission, Visa is poised and a little bit mysterious. It’s for grown-up women who know their place in the world, not little girls trying to fit in with the crowd.