Reviews by Nostalgie

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    Nostalgie
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    Bois de Paradis by Delrae

    This line up of reviews is the best evidence of the elusive "skin chemistry" phenomenon I've seen in a long time.

    Thanks to a generous sample pack from BayKat, I've been puzzling over this one all day.

    While I get a blast of something brisk (minty? herbal?) on the first spritz, I never detect citrus. Within seconds, a jammy, fruity, spicy rose takes over, against a nice woody base, and I would swear: sandalwood. For hours, the sweet, spicy, fruity rose blend makes me think of something...it's on the tip of my scent memory...one of the fruitier Histories de Parfums? I can't place it. The pineappley 1804? No, not that sweet. The rosy 1876? Getting there.

    What distinguishes Bois de Paradis on my skin is sweet, ambery, sandalwood-infused base which, along with the fruity notes (I'm thinking plumb, but also the mix called "fruits rouges" in confitures) has too much sugar for my taste. BayKat identifies blueberries, and though I eat them nearly every morning all year round, I cannot for the life of me recognize how they smell.

    Love the opening, love the deep dry down, but I'd prefer to skip the second act, where the sandalwood (if that's indeed what it is) lends a slightly head-shoppy tone that doesn't quite work with the rest of the blend.

    All in all, a lovely scent but not quite me. For fruity amber I prefer Alahine, and for spicy rose, I reach for the smokier 1876.

    My final rating is "Birthday-Worthy." If I received Bois de Paradis as a gift I'd appreciate it and I'd even wear it; and I imagine I'd be pleased to sit next to someone else who was wearing it.

    Oct 10, 2010

    04th August, 2011

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    Jean-Louis Scherrer by Jean-Louis Scherrer

    A green, long-lasting, seductive, original, complex. harmonious scent. I prefer Scherrer to better known chypre classics. I discovered it in the mid-80's because a very fashionable student from Romania wore it every day. It was a gift from her boyfriend in Paris. At that time you couldn't find it anywhere in the States, so I had to wait months until I was in France to buy it. It may have been more popular in Europe, but in the States it was--and still is--a unique scent. Gorgeous. Green. Glamorous. Bold. And it goes on and on. I apply it lightly, wear it with caution, and generally turn to it only in moments of olfactory nostalgia.

    02nd July, 2011

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    Balsamo della Mecca/ Mecca Balsam by La Via del Profumo

    I think of Balsamo della Mecca as a “body and soul” fragrance. It awakens the senses, then calms the mind. The first spritz is bracing—a mixture of labdanum and something else. All body, no soul. But wait. There's more.

    Next, I notice a good deal of benzoin or tonka or both which lasts through the drydown. The dosage is just right: a hint—only a hint—of lulling sweetness.I also picked up on a gentle but tenacious cinnamon note. Just enough to add brightness, not candy.

    The big surprise for me was the dry down. I used the computer a lot the first time I sampled Mecca, and throughout the day I would notice a lovely, ambery sillage wafting from the keyboard. Aunique, gentle, slightly floral, woody amber.

    For overall mood, Mecca reminds me very much of Tauer's L'Air du desert maroccain. I do not mean that they are note-for-note siblings. But both l'Air and Mecca satisfy the same perfume craving for me, or complement the same mood: not traditionally feminine, nor traditionally masculine; gently dry; somehow consoling and nurturing without being big, warm or blanketing; a nod to a 60s or 70s alternative aesthetic without smelling like a head shop.

    When juxtaposed, arm to arm, with Hindu Kush (my current Profumo favorite), the distinctive character of each one shines: Mecca's subtle damask rose note blooms against the fresh-cut wood note of Hindu Kush. The overall effect of Mecca is fuzzier, richer, larger, more sumptuous. In different ways, they share a quality I can’t quite describe: I think of them as “animated.”

    23rd August, 2010 (Last Edited: 31st August, 2010)

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    Kenneth Cole New York Women by Kenneth Cole

    Despite the black current and orange notes, I would call this a delicate, spicy, woody floral scent. It has the sweetness of all its white flowers, but no sugar. The first spray is quite strong and heady, so go lightly, but it softens over time and lasts forever. I especially like the way fruits are blended to add spice instead of syrup.If you do not like jasmine, don't go near it. But if you do, give it a try. A very pretty, blossomy, somewhat fragile, even melancholy scent that seems to be, and always to have been, under the radar.

    27th July, 2010

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    Eau de Paradis by Biotherm

    Never say never.
    Fruity and fruity floral fragrances don' work for me.
    Freesia, red fruits and berries are on the the top of my short list of no-no notes.
    As a result, I did not seek this one out. But when I restocked my supply of Biotherm skin products, I selected Eau de Paradis as my free sample.

    I am surprisingly drawn to this fresh, juicy, slightly (just slightly) sweet fragrance.--the way I'm drawn to crispy, dry French rosés in the summer. Maybe it is the weather (95 degrees F and humid ); I've been splashing from my sample bottle each morning and my FB is in the mail.

    Not at all heavy, the EDT wears more like a body spray.

    If you like refreshing , fruity blends (and even if you don't) give it a try. The sample bottle is generous, and the FB price is right.

    22nd June, 2010

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    Opal by Sonoma Scent Studio

    A charming skin scent, soft and comforting.

    As promised, there are no plasticy musks here. Two other potentially heavy-hitters--bergamot and sandalwood--stay on best behavior from first spritz to drydown. For the first ten minutes the vanilla stands out, but never in a high-pitched, gourmand way.

    Smooth, silky , balanced, lovely, long-lasting. And what makes Opal the Holy Grail of soft, slightly feminine musks is that it never goes powdery.

    An example of how harmony and restraint can enhance the beauty of a fragrance.

    10th March, 2010 (Last Edited: 25th July, 2011)

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    Winter Woods by Sonoma Scent Studio

    Like many others here, I am impressed with everything about Sonoma Scent Studio, from the quality and selection of fragrances to the thoughtful customer service.

    Working my way through my sample box, I find myself today cocooned in Winter Woods.

    The gorgeous opening is alive with woodsy spice. I do not detect oakmoss, but there is plenty of vetiver, guaiac and cedar in the greeting. Sandalwood becomes more prominent after the first 20 minutes and gives the ambery drydown a nostalgic, 70's vibe. What makes the drydown special is castoreum--a gentle dose, that never pushes Winter Woods into the dirty-amber realm of Bal à Versailles, but that made me reach for a BAV bottle just to be sure.

    Another winner from Sonoma Scent Studio.

    10th March, 2010

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    Après L'ondée by Guerlain

    There is something uncanny about this breathtaking masterpiece. Uncanny (Unheimlich) in the Freudian sense: familiar but foreign; paradoxical; seductively troubling.

    What I find most disarming about Après l’Ondée, is its balance of sweetness and solemnity. The name signals a degree of separation between the fragrance and the rain. But for me the distance feels spatial rather than temporal, like watching the rain from the warmth of a sumptuous room. Subtle lemon and more prominent heliotrope keep it joyful. A gentle dose of violet and and the predominant cool, iris root add a sense of longing and nostalgia. Vetiver and benzoin balance bitter and sweet. The overall composition is rich but lilting, grounded but uplifting, distant but welcoming. Like a pastel painting displayed on a stone gray wall.

    I mourn the parfum version which is no longer produced, but I am confident its ghost haunts the exquisite EDT.

    High quality, long-lasting, and remarkably different from the Guerlains built on a vanilla base.
    25 Feb.2010

    25th February, 2010 (Last Edited: 20th September, 2011)

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    Kingdom by Alexander McQueen

    A bright, complex spectrum of top notes briefly overlaps with, then shifts to, a strange and wonderful celery and carrot stage (mostly celery--lots of celery), which briefly overlaps with, then shifts to, an all-cumin drydown.

    I love the part when all the notes hum together at once with the cool vegetables at top volume--but the cumin stage takes over too quickly for me. People who describe Kingdom as smelling like sweat--male sweat to be exact-- might be reacting to the cumin. I've often noticed this "note" in body odor of some men. For me the cumin here is a too foody.

    Kingdom cleverly uses all components of a classic oriental notes; I even detect tonka or vanilla in the base (not listed in the notes)--and yet it resembles no classic oriental I've ever smelled.

    A strange, post-modern, animated, multi-phased fragrance which I absolutely cannot wear, but which I find absolutely brilliant.

    25th February, 2010

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    Indu Kush / Hindu Kush by AbdesSalaam Attar Profumo

    This is the sort of fragrance that makes me think: "Ah! There you are." It revives memories of a time hen I wore patchoulis, musks, and sandalwoods, and when everyone burned incense. Yet it does not have that thick, earnest, linear, "head-shop" character.

    The beauty of Hindu Kush for me is how it manages to be rich but dry, dry but cozy, cozy but airy, airy but assertive, assertive but graceful. As a result, it warms in the winter and cools in the summer.

    The weather is very hot and humid now. A dry scent is just the ticket. Often the fragrances associated with summer (green and aquatic scents, especially) can be actually quite syrupy, and a bit clumsy. Not Hindu Kush. It defies gravity.

    19th August, 2009

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    Iris Ganache by Guerlain

    Iris is one of my favorite perfume materials, although I find it is often interpreted too literally. Just when I thought here was not much left to do with it Guerlain came up with this brilliant blend.

    A good ganache provides chocolate a rich texture without adding sweetness: slowly blend a warm, heavy cream mix to dark chocolate, and deepen the flavor with cognac. Can you smell it?

    Iris Ganache delivers the scent promised by its name: cool, dry iris root tempered by a lush but not cloying gourmand blend that will make you drunk with olfactory pleasure.

    Playful, yet sophisticated. Unique. My only complaint is the eventual dry down to Guerlain vanilla. Enough already. But this did not prevent me from buying a full bottle. No regrets.

    10th July, 2009 (Last Edited: 20th September, 2011)

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    Vapor by Neil Morris Fragrances

    A strange, wearable scent, with lots of development phases.

    I was wondering how heliotrope and tonka could contribute to anything that smelled like "vapor"--but they do.

    The opening is a bit prickly --sharp aldeydes create an almost citrusy feel--but hold on, once it clams down, "Vapor" is like a blast of fresh air blowing into a room where pastries (the southern French specialty "Frangipane" comes to mind) languish in a basket on the table.

    A somewhat plasticy musk rises up in the dry down, and the "vapor" note becomes more industrial than earthy--but not in a bad way. Kind of like a layer of clean warehouse air over bread crust. A bit like Bois Farine minus the honey and warmth: Bois Farine left the farm for a job in the city.

    Becomes a close-to-the-skin scent within an hour. I'd love to know how the sillage smells on someone else. Perhaps because I only used a bit from a sample vial. I don't think I'm radiating "Vapor." In the deep dry down it makes my skin smell fresh and tasty, but not in a foody way.

    Not too feminine, not too masculine--but leaning more toward masculine in the dry down.

    10th July, 2009

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    City Rain by Neil Morris Fragrances

    First, the husband test: "Nice. Fresh. Water"

    Since I am in fact at the beach , and having just spend the whole morning swimming, running, and breathing sea air, I can say without hesitation that this is nice, fresh _city_ water. No suntan oil, no salt. Likewise, no wet leaves or dewy buds.

    I'm reminded of a paint color I love called "Wet Pavement:" cool and gray; damp but not dank; misty, not musty; watery, not wan. Like Caillebotte's oddly clean and pressed rendition of Paris in the rain.

    10th July, 2009

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    Drifiting by Neil Morris Fragrances

    Drifting is sweeeeeeeeeeeet and fruity. I swear I smell Pina Colada, but coconut and pineapple are not listed as notes.

    Must be a fruity mirage.

    Starts of like Gilligan's Island: sugary, light and goofy.

    Dries down like Lost: more complicated and mysterious, but ultimately light and entertaining .

    10th July, 2009

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    Escentric 02 by Escentric Molecules

    Strong and chilly. A pleasant, peppery, woody scent, giving the overall impression of traditional masculine (but non-citrus) colognes.

    As I catch a whiff now and then, I forget it is my own sillage and half expect to bump into a guy in a too-tight button-down shirt who likes my smile and wants to buy me drink.

    10th July, 2009

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    Coral by Neil Morris Fragrances

    The fragrant equivalent of bright coral nail polish. An interesting fruity blend, with pomegranate and sweet fig in the foreground. I found it too fruity sweet and had to scrub it off. The tenacious remains are pleasant. A must try if you like very sweet fruity scents and want something a bit different.

    10th July, 2009

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    Salt Air by Demeter Fragrance Library

    before going to the beach, I sprayed one arm with Salt Air, and left the other unscented. Devious, no? Or maybe just tragically or simply redundant.

    Hours later, subjected to heat, sweat, the ocean breeze and a long dip in the Atlantic, the Salt Air arm smelled just the way I *think* my skin smells after a day on the beach. My right arm, exposed to a day on the beach
    un-Demetered, seemed unscented by comparison.

    This one should win an award for tenacity. It also gets points for not having that buttery note that makes some beach scents sticky (M. Hulot's Holiday, for example). Long-lasting, too. My favorite beachy scent so far.

    10th July, 2009

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    J'Adore by Christian Dior

    This is a fruity floral, with the peach and rose standing out most for me. If it were color it would be the peachy pink of some excellent dry French rosés. A very fresh, almost (but not quite) sophisticated non-bold floral. It starts out a bit too fruity but calms down some. A little more bright than I like my perfumes, but very nice and wearable.
    The dry down is soft and cheerful. I can't say I adore it. But it's nice. Just nice. Attractive bottle design.

    10th July, 2009

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    Jubilation 25 by Amouage

    Jubilation opens with a fizzy, almost lightly peppered rose chord, and dries down to the smoke and shimmer of perfectly balanced flowers, incense and myrrh. The overall impression is one of sweetness: not floral sweetness, not vanillic sweetness, and not even a pinch of sugar. No, it is the sweetness of seemingly weightless resins, woods, and balsams that give Jubilation its distinctive allure. Its confident, but never pushy sillage never fails to attract compliments.

    When I tried Jubilation from a carded sample, it had no staying power. However, I liked it so much that I decided to buy a small bottle. I am pleased to report that I applied it yesterday afternoon and can still smell it the next morning before my shower.

    A lovely, must-try fragrance, Jubiliation sometimes serves for me as the ideal, sophisticated, light main course. On other days, it is the delicate appetizer that sends me to Tauer's less elegant but equally delicious L'air du désert marocain or Le Maroc pour elle for the main course.

    02nd May, 2009

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    Miel & Citron / Honey & Lemon by L'Occitane

    [Comparing the two versions of the fragrance, Miel & Citron and Miel & Citron EDT Pailletée]

    If you love the original (now called "Classic") Miel & Citron, be sure to test the new Pailletee Shimmering version before buying. The original is a smooth, creamy, caramely citrus blend, sweet but not syrupy thanks to the patchouli and vanilla base.

    The the new Miel et Citron Pailletee Shimmering is true to its name: I smell two primarily notes: citrus and honey. As a result, this fragrance is at once sharper and waxier than the original: kind of like lemons in a bowl next to bees' wax candles. As it dries down, I detect less citrus and more green floral, but that bees' wax candle note never goes away, and I find the fruitiness a little sour.

    Be sure to shake up the bottle before spraying to get the maximum shimmer, which is quite pretty. There's not so much sparkle that you'll look like disco queen, but just enough golden star dust to twinkle in the evening light.

    In my own private paradise, Occitane would add shimmer to the original and exchange the two names.

    02nd May, 2009

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    Bois d'Arménie by Guerlain

    Nibble-me delicious benzoin creates the overall effect of a creamy, light gourmand. Too sweet and tasty to be a traditional male scent, I would call it unisex, even feminine.

    I wish the vanilla note were tuned down just a notch so that the orris, pepper and incense--all present for the first few breathtaking minutes-- would last longer. But as the SA on the Champs Elysées told me: "Vanilla? But that's Guerlain!"

    I usually avoid vanilla (and its friends and family), but after said SA generously perfumed my hair and clothing for a test drive, I had to go back the next day for a full bottle.

    02nd May, 2009 (Last Edited: 10th July, 2009)

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    1000 Kisses Deep by B Never Too Busy To Be Beautiful

    I love orange notes in perfumes, but have had trouble finding one with just the right dose: most either smell like a basket of fresh oranges (very nice on the table but not on my clothes), or hide the orange behind stronger notes. Not so in 1000 Kisses Deep.

    1000 Kisses Deep, Eau des merveilles, and Elixir des Merveilles share a slightly bitter but very fresh, unsweetened orange note that I find scrumptious.

    In Eau des Merveilles the wood notes, especially cedar, take over on my skin. Too dry!

    In Elixir des Merveilles gooey vanilla and caramel end up candying the orange. Too sticky!

    In 1000 Kisses deep, labdanum, myrrh and osmanthus give the blend all the depth promised in the name: Juuuuuuuuust right!

    The orange is there, from beginning to end, but the wise selection of elegant complementary notes steers it in a warm, sophisticated, grown-up direction that takes 1000 Kisses Deep from daytime to evening. Modest sillage. Lasts at least 5 hours on my skin.

    The homage to a Leonard Cohen song is for me a huge plus, as are the thoughtful attention to detail in the packaging.

    Since I wear many different scents, I am disappointed that so many come in only 100 ml bottles. Again, B Never too Busy to Be Beautiful is the exception. The company seems to understand the financial, aesthetic, and practical needs of its many perfumista clients. You can choose a mini body spray for under 10 pounds, small atomizer, a small bottle, a large bottle, a pomander, or even a scented fan.

    I am smitten with 1000 kisses deep, and am quickly falling in love with B Never too Busy.

    02nd May, 2009

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    Coeur de Fleur by Miller Harris

    Like a Valentine bouquet in the shape of a heart, Coeur de Fleur offers sweets, but this is not the tooth-piercing sugar rush blasting from so many candied fragrances today. I’m more of a “floral girl” than a “fruity girl” but I appreciate the fresh, never dominating mix of peach and raspberry in CdeF.

    In fact, Coeur de fleur combines the dulcet tones of four different scent families: fruit, floral, gourmand, and resin. Jasmine and sweet pea hold up to the fruit, while mimosa and iris add just a hint of earthiness. There must be only enough vanilla and amber to anchor the other sweets; neither note stands out on its own, but instead they harmonize to create a slightly peppered, cream base. As the name suggests, flowers compose the heart the blend, and I believe they give it a timeless appeal.

    The dry down is what I call “clean sweet”—a category I’ve coined to describe the refreshing character of a few timeless floral scents such as the original versions of “L’Air du Temps” and “Aniaïs Anaïs,” fragrances that defied trends and typologies. While both are drier than Coeur de Fleur, I find that the three share a sort of olfactory integrity.

    Coeur de Fleur pays tribute to the spectrum of sweetness available in fragrance, a variety of distinct elements too often blended elsewhere into a heavy, one-note goo. While I prefer other Miller Harris concoctions, such as the spicy, rich Fleur orientale, or the yummy, dirty l’Air de rien, I would recommend Coeur de Fleur to fruity-floral lovers. It has decent sillage--not too loud--and it lasts 3-4 hours. This chic, sophisticated interpretation of perfumery’s sweet gamut demonstrates the benefits of using restraint to achieve fragrant depth and dimension.

    02nd May, 2009

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    Astor Place by Bond No. 9

    How do you convey a sense of humor and a sense of danger at the same time in a single piece of public art? Well, start by building a 2500 pound metal cube, then mount it on one corner, and allow passersby to make it spin.

    That's my reaction to Rosenthal's "Alamo" (a.k.a.
    "The Cube"), the sculpture that inspired Bond. No. 9's newest NYC tribute, Astor Place.

    I was hoping that the fragrance construction would echo the Cube's playful, gravity-defying structure. The notes are promising: fresh orange, cool violet leaf, earthy iris. Poppy provides the humor: the flower has no scent s far as I know. Equally invisible is what should be a sturdy base of musk, teak, and ambergris. If the fragrance tips over, blame it on the freesia: strong, long-lasting, overpowering freesia.

    By overshadowing the base notes with a heart note, I suppose Astor Place does engage playfully with its sculptural inspiration. In the end, it is funny but dangerous. If you don't like BIG freesia, watch your step.

    16th April, 2009

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    Cozé 02 by Parfumerie Generale

    Cozé is to scent memory what the Human Genome Project is to genealogy.

    When the phonemes in its name meet a first whiff of this pitchy brew, Cozé brings to mind “primordial ooze.” The rich blend, featuring canapa sativa seed oil, pepper, cocoa, ebony, coffee and pimento shocks at first, then eventually soothes by evoking something far away yet familiar, as mysterious as Easter Island, as mundane as rush-hour traffic. It is not the comfort smell of mother’s apron or grandfather’s pipe. No, one must dig deeper into the past. Cozé unleashes an imaginary journey through time and space, encompassing the La Brea Tar Pits, the African Savannah, a quest for fire, the Lascaux caves, exploration of the New World, and your favorite leather chair.

    Hot, tarry, dusty, as pungent as burnt rubber, and rather beautiful in an uncanny way. Not for the faint-hearted, but a must-try all the same.

    07th April, 2009 (Last Edited: 19th April, 2012)

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    Charogne by Etat Libre d'Orange

    It is difficult to cut to the chase, because each Etat Libre d'Orange fragrance comprises a name, a concept, a drawing, a narrative, a scent, and a cultural reference. If the word "Charogne" [carrion] does not inspire trepidation, then the association with Baudelaire's poem "Une Charogne" will give most scent samplers pause. In Baudelaire's 12-stanza memento mori, the poet recalls a warm summer day when he and his lover came upon a creature rotting in the afternoon sun. The poet points out that one day his lover will be just like that carcass, devoured and decomposed by the kisses of vermin; yet her divine essence will live on in the poet's immortal compositions.

    The sample package of "Charogne" features a rose sketched in black and white with a drop of red blood at the center: perhaps a nod to Baudelaire's Flowers of Evil, or to the theme of death, beauty and the printed page.

    But on to the fragrance.

    Does ELO's "Charogne" smell like the putrid carcass described in the poem? Not at all. It is, like Baudelaire's verse, oddly seductive. Bergamot and ylang ylang provide an almost too sweet initial impression, soon tamed by the softest leather. Vanilla and incense emerge over ambrette and undefined "animalc notes". These are not the heavy doses civet or castoreum I would have expected. There is an undeniable warmth to the base, but it has the strange yet familiar indolic freshness of jasmine. The overall effect is that of layered fragility and earth. Like all of the ELO fragrances I've sampled, Charogne lasts a long time, without loud sillage.

    I leave it to you to enjoy the little narrative in the sample package and on the web site. To me it reads as a metaphor of the scent's development over time on the wearer. I am nearly convinced by the last line: "How could one do without it?" But the scent in itself, without all of the words and images it evokes, would be pretty. Not striking. That's right, the "divine essence" that makes this fragrance transcendent depends upon the art of language.

    Despite the beauty of the scent, I shudder when I think of the name, and in this way , too, "Charogne" echos "Une Charogne."

    For a truly delicious and decadent experience, read the poem as you inhale the scent from your skin, or from the skin of another. You will be transported.

    04th April, 2009 (Last Edited: 13th March, 2010)

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    Bal à Versailles by Jean Desprez

    I am surprised to see BàV described as “soft,” “sweet,’ “romantic” on some review sites. It’s not that innocent. In my own mood categories, I’ve always placed BàV beside L’Air de Rien. I think of LdR as a kinder, gentler BàV. I am pleasantly shocked by BàV’s unabashed, sex-in-a bottle appeal. On second thought, it is more like afterglow in a bottle: lush and languid, warm and spent, a bit rumpled and hastily dressed. Rather than invite seduction, Bal à Versailles suggests the secret of having been seduced. The delicious, animalic basenotes are evident from the beginning, and dominate over time. I don’t get any powder or soap. Just a mix of leathery, slightly smoky, floral, musky, civety, velvet.

    Like an olfactory tattoo, the EDT penetrates my skin so thoroughly and for so long that I wonder if it will be permanent. It smolders to such an extent that I find myself touching my arm to see if my skin indeed radiates heat.

    I don’t find it dated (bottle design aside), because this sort of scent was never really trendy. The container is a masterpiece of kitsch, a parody of perfume bottles, an ironic interpretation of the scent itself. Or perhaps that’s the idea: the overdressed look of the bottle attempts to cover the nakedness of the scent within. A strange, daring, disturbing, beautiful, haunting, love-it or hate-it scent. Love it.
    I"m reviewing the EDT. Get the EDC for the dirtiest, and possibly the best formulation.

    10th February, 2009 (Last Edited: 06th March, 2011)

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    Tom of Finland by Etat Libre d'Orange

    Tom of Finland (né Touke Laaksonen) was an artist known for often controversial, homoerotic illustrations of quintessential manly men, in (and out) of the uniform of their trade: lumberjacks, sailors, bikers, etc. It is no surprise that Etat Libre d’Orange made this tribute scent big and muscular, featuring some of perfumery’s most beloved, archetypically masculine notes.

    Like many ELO fragrances, this one wraps classic appeal in a provocative name. Fine ingredients meet playful packaging, their union reflecting what I think of as ELO's trademark appeal: equal doses of earnestness and humor.

    The first spray is a blast of testosterone, all leather and trees with a dose of pepper and galbanum, giving the impression of smoke. An aldehylic top note, with a dose of citrus keep Tom of Finland from bogging down. I can’t smell the tonka and vanilla as identifiable notes, but I have a friend who smells vanilla immediately and all the way through, For me the portions are just enough to smooth potentially rough edges, so that the smoke and leather never get mean. Musk and ambergris add tenacity. I find the dry down to be seductive and everlasting as the blend morphs into one of the creamiest, most addictive vetivers i have ever sampled. In the end, a gesture of reverse rebellion, perhaps, Tom of Finland bucks the unisex trend by delivering a true, somewhat retro, masculine leather.

    A scent with muscle, I just can’t wash it off and now I’ve got the sillage of all six Village People, ready to rock.

    04th February, 2009 (Last Edited: 04th April, 2009)

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    I Am A Dandelion by CB I Hate Perfume

    Why, yes you are a dandelion—sort of.

    Many of the CB I Hate Perfume scents have a sharp floral top note that mellows with time. In I am a Dandelion this flower becomes slightly soapy and a little cloying. I have never spent much time sniffing dandelions, but I don’t recall all this sweetness, and because I’ve tasted the nutty, green leaves, I expected something earthier and softly bitter.

    To me this is not a literal interpretation, but more a playful rendition of the dandelion’s colors, yellow and green.

    I am a Dandelion dries down to an overall pleasant enough scent reminiscent of cut grass, but not as fresh,lush,clean and evocative as Demeter’s Firefly.

    In the end the question is, are YOU a dandelion? I guess I am not.

    04th February, 2009

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    Eternal Return by CB I Hate Perfume

    A philosophical premise about the infinite recurrence of matter, a religious belief that links the present to the mythical past, and the title of Delannoy’s haunting 1943 film, “Eternal Return” brings a heavy name to a light fragrance. Easy,-to-wear, close-to-the skin, short-lived, soft and aquatic, Eternal Return represents a more gentle recurrence of CB I Hate Perfume’s The Beach 1966.

    04th February, 2009

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