I expected to like the way Loretta smelled, but assumed that a "fruity floral" would not be up my alley. Upon first whiff, though, I was immediately taken. Loretta strikes me as more baroque/sensuous than "feminine" as such. It's rich and evocative in a not-so-gender-specific way. It creates a variety of sense perceptions, of color, of a certain quality of light, heat and texture. It smells purple, but with a glowing heart. I would call this pansexual more than "unisex" as the latter word sounds too neutered for what this fragrance is. But enough of gender distinctions or non-distinctions.
It is richly fruity, floral and spicy, yes, but it's also woody. The total effect is one of confidence and also enjoyment - both calm and stimulating. Interestingly, during the evening its dark character comes through and during the day, it's rich floral heart shines. It worked for me at both times of day. I think I would wear this more in cooler weather.
It starts with a generous helping of dark spiced fruit - I imagine black plums. It never tips toward Christmas compote territory, though, because the richness is tempered by a diffusive camphoric/aromatic texture that evokes lifts the whole experience and dries it out a bit. The rich tuberose heart surrounds and backs up the fragrance, becoming more pronounced as it dries down. The spice and wood give it bones throughout it's development and help maintain Loretta's deep character. One spray creates a kaleidoscopic effect all day. I'd happily smell this on anyone and may have to opt in for the full bottle soon.
I have been anxious to test out Loretta since its announced arrival online. Spicy tuberose by Andy Tauer?! Loretta seemed to be a sure bet so when an opportunity to test it out—and meet the mastermind behind the creation—came up I seized it. It was a dream to test it out but it was a surreal experience to have Mr. Tauer himself spray it on a blotter strip himself and ask for my thoughts. Hmmm, my thoughts…
I have to come clean and admit I was not knocked out that first spray. It begins as pure, over-ripened plums with loads of spice. My mind immediately went to Tom Ford’s Black Orchid Voile de Fleur. I love the plums in BOVdF but it has already been done once already. I was too tongue-tied around Mr. Tauer to grab the bottle from his hand and try it on my skin. I brought home a sample and tried again.
I tried it on freshly showered skin around 8 am yesterday morning. Again, I was met with very spicy plums that had lingered a day or two past their prime. However, Tauer’s genius made its appearance about a half hour later with the transformation from pungent plums to a dried bouquet of tuberose, dotted with orange blossoms and jasmine. Tauer stated he wanted to show a duality of the perfume’s nature and he does it so well with a slightly dusty bouquet of preserved flowers that could easily belong to a Miss Havisham-type of tortured soul. It is at this point absolutely no other fragrance compares.
A few hours later it was still going strong, but not overpowering, and transmuting once again. This transmutation became sensuously skin-like without resorting to a muskiness and sweet without being gourmand or ‘vanilla’ (both literally and figuratively speaking). There was a strangely beautiful sunbaked-skin note—I swear I think I even smelled a faint sunscreen note—which I can assume came from the ambergris and an ambery, resinous quality that kept things a bit dark, a tad sinister, and abundantly erotic. This feeling of vintage eroticism was not dirty, tawdry, or gratuitous; it was a reminder that every woman is a sexual being, even the Miss Havishams of the world. This phase of the scent stayed through the night into the morning. I’ve since showered and spritzed myself with Loretta, ready to take the ride again.
I can’t say I am well versed in all of Andy Tauer’s creations but I’ve noticed a pattern where his fragrances may not exactly knock its wearer head over heels initially. The ‘wow’ moments have hit me upon a second or third wearing. Loretta has continued to leave me awe-struck with every wearing. This will be the third day I’ve worn it and I'll definitely mourn the day I finish my sample.