So rough opening you could polish a wood sculpture with it. Dries down to a smooth (but not quiet!) and very characteristic flowery piece. The flowers though are not by any means realistic - this is a psychedelic bouquet tossed in the air of a filled club by someone in a very good mood and with very red lipstick. This is a girl we've all met - vivid, a little weird, lovely and so crazy happy you just have to like her. You won't have deep conversations about life with this lady, but you sure as hell will have an amazing night out with her.
I had high hopes for this one - the bottle is gorgeous and the notes made me think this couldn't be anything but a winner. But it's not. I forgot that this - after all - is a fragrance aimed towards a young audience, an audience normally buying fruity-florals; sometimes with no other criterion than a cute bottle embracing the liquid (think Marc Jacob's "Dot").
Balenciaga has twigged the nice-bottle-concept, and they also realized that the young fruity-floral-audience (usually) doesn't want too much of a challenge when they buy a perfume. The brave move Balenciaga has made here is the fact that this isn't sweet, or peachy, or powdery, or candied - there is actually nothing in here reminding me of the huge range of "pink" fragrances dominating the market. Instead this is a green rose, with a soapy but not out-of-the-shower-clean character. The mint never turns cold in the typical minty way, instead it soothes the composition and softens the edges. It doesn't have a great sillage but sticks around for a good 6-8 hours on me.
I find it nice for what it is, but I also find it boring.
After all I'm quite thankful and have great respect for what Balenciaga is doing here: Florabotanica might introduce a new trend different from the now dominating fruity-floral-trend. And maybe, maybe (oh I wish!) this might even fuel the perfume interest in one or two teens wandering aimlessly about the perfume department, not yet aware of the fact that there is other fragrances in the perfume world than fruity-florals.
I sampled this because of the banana-note. When looking for the banana - you can indeed find it, but it's main role seem to be to emphasize the tiare and coconut-composition. Initially there is a short whiff of citrus, but that's only for a few seconds. Soon it's all about coconut and tiare. Although I do agree with teardrop about the suntan-lotion smell, it reminds me even more of handmade/homemade bath products: the smell when you walk into one of those shops where the air is filled with smells from just too much sweet mixtures and bath-salts.
I must confess I'm not very fond of neither tiare nor coconut, so me finding this a cloying coconut-tiare-combo isn't much of a surprise. I can't help but wondering why Profumi del forte didn't let the citrus linger longer, to create a balance with the sweetness? Why didn't they let the banana-note stand out more, making this a little less of a comfort scent?
If you're interested in the banana note I recommend you try Humiecki & Graef "Eau Radieuse" instead, for a more interesting take on banana.
Bergamot and lavender in a very clean (too clean) composition. Put your head in a detergent box and you won't have to sample this. I took a smell at my sample and immediately realized I wouldn't wear it, ever - it smells too much like clean laundry. I therefore used my sample as a bed linen spray and I felt as if I was sleeping in newly washed sheets, every night. By the time I finished my sample I'd gone addicted, and the perfume had gone from a red thumb to a green one.
The name of this perfume - Un jour d'ete - means A summer dag, and since the perfume "Jasmine" from Keiko Mecheri is one of the most beautiful jasmines I've smelled, I had high hopes for this one.
Unfortunately this is a summer day with citrus fruits. A LOT of citrus. Initially I get bergamot (and petit grain?) but above all: lemon. After 30 minutes I can detect the "woody notes" listed as base notes, but a sweet amber is more prominent.
The result is a citrus-amber creation with a hint of unspecified flowers. I could be polite and say that the dry down smells like a creamy fruity-floral. But I prefer to be honest: to me this smells like the air fresheners people use for their toilets.
11th November, 2012 (last edited: 30th November, 2012)
If you think you're unable to smell this perfume - don't despair. Spray aplenty on a piece of paper and let it dry, then put it in your pocket or wallet or bag for a few minutes (it seems to smell even stronger when in contact with textile). Then you'll hopefully perceive the scent: A salty aura that's literally mouthwatering. I can't really find any other words to describe it than "salty". The sillage is superb. As strange as it may sound; this scent smells just as strong/strongly when you're one meter away as it does when you're ten centimeters away.
When I wore this the first time I was well aware of that difficult-to-describe-salty scent. Now my nose seem to have adjusted and I only perceive the faintest hint of wood/woods when I sniff my wrists, and it's so soft it's barely a skin scent. That is unfortunate (and sad!) since that salty-like scent is extraordinary. The good thing is - as xiikzodz has mentioned - that this sticks for days to the clothes you wore along with the perfume.
To me this smells like sex - not true to nature-sex and not in a dirty way. Just, well; sexy. VERY sexy.
Apparently someone in the MJ-laboratory assumed that the 14-year-olds (the only ones I can ever imagine buying this) of today have dysfunctional olfactory nervs, and that this perfume therefore had to have an opening so loud that it ravages the rest of the populations bulbus olfactoriuses.
Initially: BANG - cheap red berries mis-matched with dragon fruit, and the coconut water from the middle notes politely perceptible as if trying to add some kind of kindness/sunshine/anything-not-bad to the disaster.
If you're able to still smell anything after the initial mayhem, you find the jasmine (prominent), coconut water (prominent), and orange blossom (not so prominent at first) transforming this into something bearable but not wearable. At this point it's like any anonymous, artificial fruity-floral out there, but contained in a cute bottle. And in the bottle it should stay.
09th October, 2012 (last edited: 16th October, 2012)
The first minutes I get the unpleasant play-doh smell that others have mentioned. Fortunately it disappears and I get a warm and rich vanilla.
Many other vanilla scents have additional notes to make the scent more interesting, like the number of different vanillas from La Maison de la Vanille. Lea is not like that: here's nothing added in order to spice it up, or twist it, or make it more of a gourmand. It's just vanilla. A simple scent? Yes. Suave? Oh indeed!
The "cigarette"-part was the reason I sampled this, unfortunately this is all about jasmine and apricot. Since I'm not particularly into any of these two notes, this scent doesn't really touch me.
After the initial dry down though, you can indeed notice a waft of cigarettes, but it's not actually smokey like for example Mona di Orio's Les Nombre d'Or Cuir, Tom Ford's Tuscan Leather, or Tauer's Lonestar memories, not even like the polite and wellbehaved smoke in Keiko Mecheri's Cuir fauve. This scent is more like the I-have-just-been-outside-smoking-aura that you can register when you hug someone at a party; a person with a rather boring fruity-floral perfume.
IOW: if you like fruity-florals and are looking for one with a (very, very) little twist - this might be something for you. If you like smokey scents - you won't find what you're looking for here.
About a month ago I wrote:
"How COULD I blind buy this?! It smells overwhelmingly flowery in an impolite way, NO finesse/subtlety, NO elegance, just an in-your-face kind of headache generator. I imagine this is what an Italian woman (aged 50-something) with too much money and no taste smells like."
For the past four weeks I've gradually changed my mind. From one star and on "swap list", to three stars and on "keep list". The opening is still somewhat vulgar: a tuberose so loud I can only discriminate the bergamot. Frankincense? Hm... Maybe if you know it's there. Pink pepper? I can't discern it at all. The first 30 minutes are not very nice, and since sillage is superb you unfortunately can't get through the initial half hour without being aware of what's applied to your wrists.
Then: about 1,5-2 hours of flowers; in my opinion a bit boring and quite heavy.
The dry down 2-3 hours after application is where you want to go, and it's indeed worth waiting for. The tuberose fades and gives room for a jasmine that is more like an airy presence than a flowery smell. You perceive a "clean" patchouli, lovely vetiver and wood (apparently sandalwood). I'm to "new" in perfumery to know what a well-done sandalwood should smell like, so unfortunately I can't tell you if it's particularly beautiful, I just know I like it. "Oriental notes" - yes, but not obtrusive.
After 8 hours the perfume is nothing more than a mysterious purple tone. This purple dry down is what I like most with this perfume.
I wish the patchouli had been earthy instead of clean, and that the oud had been present: after all - it's named "Precious oud" and oud is what I wanted. Maybe the name is one of the major problems with this fragrance, "Precious tuberose" should have been more suitable.
01st October, 2012 (last edited: 05th November, 2012)
Since I really didn't find this smell appealing when tried on a paper strip, I've never bothered to try it on. Then; bored in a mall a few months ago, I sprayed some on. That too sweet fruity-floral character so prominent on the paper, turned into something somewhat green on my skin. I find it very nice: to my nose this is not a scent trying to smell "real"; it's very artificial but doesn't deny it. And what I really like is that this (on my skin) is one of the very few clean-smelling fragrances that doesn't smell like soap or light florals. It's just artificially fresh.
The first 25 minutes I get a waxy and kind of unspecified sweet pleasant smell. This phase starts the minute I apply the perfume, and even though the sillage is minimal the scent is VERY detectable when I sniff my wrist.
Then the perfume turns on me. The sillage increases 'til it's like a lions roar, even when I've applied just a drop on one of my wrists it's so loud I feel sick. The waxy sweetness turns into a stale sweetness, like unwashed hair of an old man. It's a real scrubber, unfortunately the scent is impossible to wash off. It lasts and lasts and lasts, the only time I've managed to NOT scrub it off after two hours, I could easily smell it for two days, despite 2 showers and several handwashes.
This clearly develops differently on different people. I wanted to like this, and that's why I try it on from time to time, hoping that I might have been wrong the last time I wore it.
My thumbs down has nothing to do with whether this is a high quality perfume or not - I'm to unexperienced to determine that. The red thumb is because this smells absolutely, horrifyingly disgusting on me.
Sawdusts, a hint of smoke - not tar-like, more like the burnt wood-smell that appears when you use an electric stationary saw. (Not a chainsaw!)
About five minutes after application I get the faintest hint of apple, but it only lasts for 10 minutes, and then it's all about the woods; but the initial sawdusts now replaced by smooth logs. On me - good sillage and it lasts all day, I can still smell it after showering.
This is a wellcrafted scent (it's a shame that the "EN pour elle"-version is so lame). I'm a woman, I'm 25 (which I like to think of as "young"), and I love this. The only reason I give this 4 stars and not 5, is because that smoke-like appearance disappears after the initial 10 minutes - I would've wanted it to stay.
The distinct woody character is associated with masculine fragrances, but who cares? This is good stuff, don't let the "masculine" label scare you off; this is an awesome scent.
This might be called a male fragrance but I think it is very unisex. On my skin this is a warm and very linear scent; what I experience the first minutes is what I'll have for the next 6 hours. And that is - heaven.
Cuir Fauve is leathery - but not at all as distinct (or smokey!) as Tom Ford's Tuscan Leather, and it does not turn woody like TL as time goes.
I would say CF is quite spicy, but not at all in an "oriental" way, if that makes any sense?
When I let my father (who is a real perfumista) smell this he closed his eyes and sighed. "This is walking over a stableyard with dust and sunlight in the air, then reaching the shade in the shelter and leaning your head against a leather saddle and a brown stallion, feeling the warmth radiating from the animal."
I think that's an accurate and wonderful description.
It lasts for about 6 hours on me, and it stays close to the skin.
26th August, 2012 (last edited: 13th September, 2012)