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I was preparing myself for a strong leather scent, bigger and bolder than what I've previously tried. I was amazed to discover that this is a feminine and soft leather, nothing like Bandit by Robert Piguet or Cabochard by Gres.
This is leather with pretty floral and soapy nuances. I find nothing like what some have described; there's no animalistic qualities, (at least to my nose), no saltiness and no bitterness.
It almost smells inky to my nose, like a room filled with regal, black leather armchairs, big red cedar tables and ink-wells, with a vase filled with jasmine, ylang ylang and rose sitting near a window overlooking a courtyard.
I also don't get the masculine references, to me this particular scent is very feminine, pretty almost. I think it would work well in a casual atmosphere too.
I recommend Cuir de Russie as a leather scent for beginners, the perfect subtle leather before the transition into the bigger, harsher and stronger leather scents. Strange as it may sound, this fragrance is more romantic than dominatrix in my opinion. If you want sexual, animalistic leather try the men's department or douse yourself in Bandit.
Cuir de Russie has great lasting strength, however the sillage is extremely intimate and subtle, making it somewhat difficult to detect at times. All in all, a beautiful powdery and floral interpretation of a leather classic from Chanel.
24th March, 2012