Total Reviews: 11
This year, we spent our summer holidays in Copenhagen. And apart from serious wardrobe envy that had me fighting the urge to tackle every Danish woman to the ground and steal her clothes (and bicycle), I also discovered the Danish art of hygge.
Pronounced “heuuurgah”, as if trying to dislodge a hairball from one's throat, hygge translates loosely to “coziness,” a concept that the Danes take very seriously indeed. This involves snuggling under cashmere blankets, lighting candles, drinking hot chocolate around a blazing fire, lounging around on sheepskin rugs, and, well, resting your face against the furry belly of a sleeping kitten. Basically, anything that gives you comfort and ease. The best explanation I found was in an article that defined it as “the absence of anything annoying or emotionally overwhelming; taking pleasure from the presence of gentle, soothing things.”
Well, hell, sign me up! I'm in serious need of a hygge.
As it turns out, hygge (for me) turns out to be walking with my family in a nearby pine forest called The Raven, a nature reserve that backs onto Curracloe beach. Used for the D-Day landing scenes at the start of Saving Private Ryan and more recently, Brooklyn, this beach and its adjoining forest is the kind of place you go when you need to filter out all the "annoying or emotionally overwhelming" things in your life. So, last Sunday when I went there, I decided to "up the hygge" and go with a fragrance that is all about cozy, lived-in comfort.
I chose Cadjmere. Cadjmere is a perfect embodiment of hygge. Two words: creamy pine! Actually, it calls to mind that brilliant phrase coined by the ladies over at Now Smell This, namely “wood pudding”, which is basically any scent that captures the same feeling of comfort you get when you slip into your pajamas at the end of a long day.
While Cadjmere definitely qualifies as sweet and creamy, what comes through for me in the first half is mainly green, aromatic woods with only a faint undertone of milkiness. The cypress and rosewood notes are incredibly natural and bright-smelling, and I’m reminded once again that Pierre Guillaume is the master of all things woods-related.
It opens with a combination of aromatic cypress wood, rosewood, and mandarin orange that smells briefly like orange-scented milk chocolate before smoothing out into a milky pine-like smell. It evokes the feeling of being in deep forest, the aroma of raw wood bleeding milky sap into the air, and crushed pine needles underfoot.
After a while, Cadjmere loses its bright, spiky greenness and becomes fuzzier, as if someone reached into a picture and smudged out all the hard lines with their thumb. Finally, in the base, a sweet, musky sandalwood expands to fill the air pockets left by the sharp, aromatic woods, becoming ever sweeter and creamier with the addition of vanilla.
There is something very evocative, very eighties about the sandalwood accord here, reminding me of the trail of heavy, coconutty sandalwood perfumes on the sweaters of friends as we prepared to go out to a disco. I don’t know whether it’s a memory of a specific perfume or simply a collection of different smell memories - hairspray, cheap perfume, lipstick, teenage girl musk, lava lamps, and so on. But I kind of like it, although I can see why some might find it too sweet and perfumey.
Cadjmere might not be as arresting or as dramatic as Coze, as sensual as L’Ombre Fauve, or as tasty as Aomassai, but it lands right in the hygge-seeking part of my soul and sticks. I might not love it forever, but it’s just what I need right now, as I pull on my hiking boots to take the kids out blackberry-picking in The Raven. It's a cashmere sweater between washes, a light female musk and three-day old sandalwood perfume clinging to its fibers, wafting up to greet you like an old friend. Totally hygge, I'm telling you.
I keep reading "coconut" in the reviews above, but the first scent I thought when I first put Cadjmere on was chocolate. Sweet, lush, creamy--though not cloying--not at all my usual floral choices. As it wore on, a woodsy muskiness emerged--sandalwood and rosewood with a soft vanilla/amber undertone. A lovely, sultry and warm perfume that seems like it will wear especially well in the winter.
Cadjmere is one of my favorites that I can see getting a full bottle of once the decant runs out. It's a soothing peaceful creation that starts with an intoxicating slightly powdery spritz of creamy citrus woods, floating on a carefully blended bed of warm woods, amber, sandlewood, and vanilla. The coconut milk has been described very well below as being a woody husk coconut. It's the most subtle coconut accent I've come across.
There are a few other scents that I've since compared to Cadjmere like Tam Dao by Diptyque, Dior Addict, Oriental Lounge by The Different Company.
Cadjmere is superior to anything else I've compared it to, setting it apart as the best of its kind - a milky mildly oriental cypress/vanilla/tropical/woods.
It is a touch on the feminine side, but not overly so. I wear it for a zen-like mood, that has more of a foody/milky powder element than Kyoto by Comme des Garcons which is much more incense woods with no vanilla or coconut.
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PG scents often take a little bit of time to kick in for me. Much like truly great music, there is too much going on to understand fully in one sitting. Cadjmere was no different. At first I found it too sweet and creamy, but eventually I came around to liking it. Now I see that what at first registered as cloying was actually cognitive dissonance between the sweetness of the coconut contrasting with the pungency of the Cypress resin. Once that discord was resolved my appreciation blossomed. Pierre Guillaume has a knack for this kind of thing, and frankly I think he is a genius.
This is one of those fragrances that I simply couldn’t understand the first time I tested it… I was a total blank. So, as is my habit, I put the sample tube back in limbo part of the sample drawer and went on with my life. Months later at my second testing the word “coconut” popped into my brain when I sniffed it. What I smelled was the hard, dusky-almost-dusty, shaggy/woody surface of a coconut after its fleshier exterior had been removed… just a little of the coconut meat/milk aroma came through, just enough to allow me to think that I might be smelling coconut palm wood (of which I have no idea of the smell). The woody dominant coconut accord was nice, but not intriguing in the least. The next testing gave me the rosewood that I had been seeking out combined with a amber/wood like scent that I assume is ambrette seed. There was also a bit of resinousness involved, but I just didn’t find anything exciting about the fragrance. I was bored with the whole idea of it until I realized that I had been getting it all wrong: I suddenly realized that this is a scent that I could easily live with: This is a dusky/woody, semi-resinous, semi-sweet, masculine-enough fragrance that is assertive without calling attention to itself. It exists as a comfortable fruity/woody background abstractness that, sprayed lightly, gives off an air of mystery without really giving its presence away. Off my skin I don’t get sweet and I don’t get gourmand. I get a woody dominant slightly coconuty background abstractness. Cadjmere has a firm sillage and a good enough longevity… I wear it with an extremely light application and I quite enjoy it that way.
01st February, 2010 (last edited: 02nd February, 2010)
A creamy warm chypre that is aromatic and resinous. Spray some on a cashmere scarf in the dead of winter. I think some of the notes battle a bit and it isn't as smooth as it could be, but it's very nice and lasts all day.
First, may I say, the previous writers have executed their reviews beautifully. I will add that Cadjmere reminds me of a few other fragrances that radiate a sweet, smooth (see lizzie_j's aged liquor reference), mellow, I'd dare say dull aura: Rochas Tocade, Chopard Casmir, and the drydown of Boucheron Trouble or Liz Claiborne Spark. I can't decide my favorite from this camp. The vanilla dullness is at once very attractive/soothing and then wearying/boring. However, a cost comparison removes C18 from the running for me.
Be sure to check out the many positive reviews at Lucky Scent.
So, thumb neutral or thumb up? I think the interesting resins earn this fragrance a ...
A gorgeous Parfumerie Generale classic.... it does everything PG does, and it does it well. Here we have a woody fragrance that is made creamy - and nearly gourmand - without the addition of traditional gourmand notes. Also typical of PG discordant-made-harmonious is the addition of fruit notes - in this case tangerine - to give the overall composition flair without interfering with the primary accord or being too weird (a la Cuir Venenum). It is not entirely linear. The beginning is somewhat confused; not in a bad way but rather in an interesting 'where is this going' way. Once settled into the heart the creamy wood really comes through, and only on drydown does the amber/vanilla become prominent. This is not a light fragrance by any means, and it will last at least a day on your skin.
If you've never tried Parfumerie Generale and want to know what typifies the PG style, this is one of the first I'd recommend to try.
nice powdery rose which is kinda mellow at the same time with heavy does of vanillic milkiness. in all the vanilla adds a bit sweetness and creates an aura very verr similar to what montale acheived with Blue Amber...only this is rosewood based silky smooth concoction whcih stays linear. it'll not disappoint. One of those kinds which could be a safe blind buy. its not my type but, i can imagine many people diggin this one.
15th September, 2008 (last edited: 26th September, 2008)
I love this juice. Warm, smooth as 20 year old Scotch, and foody enough to satisfy the gourmand in me. But in addition to vanilla and coconut (I find the latter VERY subtle, not the loud sugar dusted coconut flakes of some scents), the woods make an appearance early, and serve to further soften any remaining rough edges of this lovely comfort scent. Lasting power is good, not great, and sillage is modest. Not for hot summer days; perfect for a damp, drizzly late afternoon in the fall. As comfortable as a worn leather recliner. Yum....
I think this may be a scent where personal chemistry plays a big hand. On me, the cypress is dominant, the coconut and vanilla almost nonexistent. Myrtle is there, too, but subdued. Cadjmere is a winter forest that I can walk through in a big comfy coat, and I can smell someone baking something delicious a kilometer away. Fabulous winter staple. Strong stuff, though, go lightly.