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Truth or Dare: Fragrance Review
Throughout Madonna’s 30+ year career, much has been accomplished. It is very likely that no other female artist will ever reach her level of success. With the undisputed title of being the ‘Queen of Pop’, she has often faced a lot of criticism, hatred, and immeasurable expectations from the masses. With each project she takes on, she aims to exceed all expectations. Granted, she is not perfect (no one is), but she is one of the hardest working women I’ve ever known to exist. She goes out and gets whatever she wants, and that I admire. In 1984 (while I was on Earth for only a year) when Dick Clark of American Bandstand asked her about her hopes and dreams for her career she said she wanted to rule the world, which she has done more than once.
Despite all of her achievements and ventures, there is one thing that has eluded her, and that is the world of fragrance. This arena is near and dear to her heart because this is one of the few memories she has of her mother as she passed when Madonna was very young. She has often stated that she remembers how her mother wore a scent that consisted of tuberose and gardenia, two white floral notes that leave a lasting impression on the senses.
Throughout her life she has reportedly worn various perfumes to remind her of her mother, have a piece of her with her always. Fragrances like Robert Piguet’s Fracas, Tubereuse of L’Artisan Parfumeur or even Tubereuse Indiana by Creed have all been a part of her adult life. Though they may remind her of what her mother once wore, they are not personal as the fragrance is not her own and certainly not her mother’s scent. Fragrance is special in that it can be a lot of different things, with memories being one in particular.
Madonna could have made a fragrance a long time ago. During the Blonde Ambition era or fast forward to the Ray of Light era, Madonna had the world in the palm of her hand. These (and many other times) were great periods for her to release a perfume. A lot of celebrities release fragrances that are devoid of substance. Rather than following the common path of many, Madonna chose to be patient and wait for the perfect time to create a fragrance of her own. As with anything she does, she had a hand in everything involving the creation of Truth or Dare, which was released in April 2012.
Being that I am the epitome of a Cancer, I am obsessed with fragrance, so I have a substantial collection. Once I discovered that Madonna’s fragrance was out, I began to read an assortment of reviews. As expected, a lot of reviews were about one’s personal feelings about Madonna the celebrity and not the fragrance; fascinating isn’t it? Though I am one of Madonna’s biggest fans, I wanted to be completely unbiased. I did not let my love and adoration for her influence my opinion. So now, on to my first experience with Truth or Dare, a perfume for women or men not bound by societal norms.
I decided to pick up a sample because I never buy a fragrance blindly. I feel that fragrance must be worn on your skin and settle for some time before you can truly invest in it as you may not like and thus have buyer’s remorse. Initially I sprayed my left wrist, requested a sample and headed home. While in my car, the fragrance enveloped me; it was as if I had sprayed much more than one part of my body. The fragrance comes off as being very feminine, intoxicating and smart.
It was immediately evident to me that the top notes had to be white flowers: you can pick up tuberose, a hint of neroli and gardenia. I personally love gardenia (Chantecaille’s Pétales is a personal favorite of mine), so this was a pleasure to pick up in this scent. At the same time I felt a blast of jasmine hit me in the proboscis. This is said to be a middle note, but it is very intense at the beginning. Though it is rather bold upon your first whiff, the other white flowers blend well to make it enjoyable. I have never been a huge fan of jasmine (which is why I cannot wear Tom Ford’s Jasmine Rouge), so this was very important to me. With the combination of these particular notes, I was immediately reminded of Thierry Mugler’s masterpiece Alien; you can think of Truth or Dare as similar but much more soft when it comes to the jasmine. They are still very different fragrances so you can rest any possible worries you may have.
As a few hours went by, the jasmine was still with me, feeling almost as if someone was spritzing it in the air amongst the other notes; it was so beautiful. You can also pick up benzoin and I wasn’t able to pick up the lily that is reported to be a part of the heart notes. What I found very interesting was as the jasmine started to get more intense on my skin, I smelled leather. I kept putting my wrist to my nose because I love the smell of leather (so naturally I like John Varvatos or even Dzing! By L’Artisan Parfumeur). A group of white flowers and benzoin lead me to smell leather; brilliant. Once I hit the five hour mark, the fragrance took me for another ride.
At this point, the volume was turned up; all the way up. Truth or Dare was leaning more towards dare; it was so sexy I would have done anything at that moment. With the smell of leather on me, I began to pick up an animalic hint of musk. I also picked up vanilla and caramel, two gorgeous gourmands. I discovered the amber is caramelized amber, which made it even better. I cannot truly put into words how hot it smelled so deep into having it on me. The caramelized amber made me want to take a bite out of my wrist and deal with the consequences later. No dare was required for it was my truth.
After approximately eight or nine hours, the jasmine calms, the other white flowers disappear, a smidge of benzoin is there and we are left with the base notes that linger; they come in waves of sorts. I continued to smell vanilla, amber and musk well into 14 hours of wearing this fragrance. It was like dessert; saving the best for last. I should also note that I actually took a shower and still could smell it on my wrist afterwards; I was very impressed.
Overall, I am very pleased with this fragrance
and do plan to buy it in the largest size offered. I am not one to purchase ancillaries so the fragrance itself will suffice. This fragrance has depth and dimension. It is very clear that Madonna put a lot into forming this fragrance. It is not a cliché celebrity fragrance that reeks of sugary sweet notes or poorly blended florals. I would also like to add that I did not smell Fracas in this fragrance; some notes perhaps but no, this is not Fracas; they are very different. This fragrance is more of a fall/winter scent in my mind, but due to its sex appeal, it could be worn any time you want to be romantic or simply have someone devour you. Kudos Madge. I highly recommend you give this one a try.
04 May, 2012