The end of the world is a soothing dream, something to be embraced in ELDO’s creed, if this offering is anything to go by. Iris prominent perfumes can display a certain alien hauteur – vegetal, rooty, flinty, not offering the easy recognition of a floral or a citrus note. One feels one is meant to display an intellectual appreciation rather than the instinctual and emotional response usually triggered by scent.
The iris in La Fin du Monde smells like how one would imagine pale pink milk to taste – smooth, sweetened delicately, comforting but with an undertow that evades complete identification. It is paired beautifully with the skin musk qualities of ambrette, given a little sympathetic support from carrot seed. There are also gentle woody tones and a hint of something a bit metal-in-the-mouth, but these are minor actors to the central iris-ambrette pairing. Safe, and giving the appearance of simplicity, but also deeply reassuring and rewarding, a trusted friend in perfume form.
Cute opening, velvety and slightly soapy with dusty iris notes (powdery, but not creamy nor rooty), well balanced on a spicy-incense accord of pepper and soft woods, with a silky breeze of amber and resins, vanillin, tonka, perhaps some honey notes or something equally halfway floral and resinous, sligthly roasted too (I guess it's that "popcorn" note). I don't know how gunpowder smells, I always guessed that it should smell like sulphur, and I don't get much of it here. On the base, the amber-woody accord is provided by a load of Iso E which also determines quite a "pencil sharpener" feel. Pleasant, effortlessly elegant, inoffensive, on the drydown it settles on a silky ambery-woody-iris concoction. A playful and a bit uninspired toy aping Dior Homme to many extents, just drier, a bit more woody, with a more "impalpable" feel. Frankly dull, but one of the nicest among Etat Libre range (and that says it all).
Genre: Woody Oriental
Apparently the world ends just in time for dessert. Never mind L’Etat Libre d’Orange’s characteristically loopy advertising copy; the most transgressive element at play here is a short-lived burnt popcorn top note. Otherwise, this is a downy soft gourmand woody oriental with a powdery vanilla, amber, and iris drydown. Yes, there are a couple of oddball detours on the way: some charred woods and a bitter, inky note (the “gunpowder?”), but there’s nothing terribly shocking on display, and certainly nothing that qualifies as apocalyptic. There’s more novelty in this house’s earlier gourmand Like This, more quality in their Fat Electrician, and more fun to be had with their Rossy de Palma. This one’s just a snooze.
I was really looking forward to trying this fragrance but it was left unpurchased in the end.
Why do I enjoy wearing DH and DHI but was slightly put off here?
It can only be the Iris Absolute that has been used -- it dominates the whole fragrance and the other notes seem just 'bit players'. I actually find it less 'fun' than the 2 Diors.
If you are an Iris fan, you will absolutely love this as it is a fine well made fragrance.
The name is purely ironic, there is no hint of Armageddon here. An innovative combination of (mainly) iris and - who wudda thunk it- popcorn. The gunpowder note adds a subtle smokiness. The popcorn is unbuttered and only slightly-sweetened; I wouldn't call this a gourmand. As usual with this house there is a definite artificiality or synthetic quality, suggestive of fairly strict cost-control measures. No-one will suspect they have splashed out for finest Florentine iris. That said, it is a pleasant wear and lasts all day. Whether you like it or not I think depends a lot on your attitude to smelling like popcorn. That does have positive associations for most people; no-one goes to the cinema for a bad time (admittedly I have seen many poor movies but I tend to nod off during those anyway and everyone loves a nap). Unisex.