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    jtd's avatar

    United States United States

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    Original Santal by Creed

    Creed engender devotees as often as they do conspiracy theorists. People either seem to fall for the story or they mistrust it. Other than Irisia, which I am partial to, I haven't found a Creed that I enjoy. Though Creed's marketing schtick is particularly ludicrous and pretentious, is it really any worse than, say, Chanel or Taylor Swift? If you accept that all marketing is lies told for the sole purpose of luring you in, then style and story really make no difference.



    But Creed's marketing and mythology are such an easy read that it becomes fun. When the life of leisure and affluence is sold to you over and over with each perfume, you come to realize that they're not even trying to sell you the image of a particular lifestyle, but the very notion of aspiration. As for Original Santal itself, a century late in the game Creed want to sell you not just a perfume but an empire.

    Reading between the lines of the name tells you a bit about this this perfume up front. The name and the date of release tell you the same thing twice--there won't be much real mysore sandalwood to it. "Santal": commercial sandalwood harvesting has been banned in India since the late 1990s and the dwindling supply available is too expensive for largescale commercial perfume use. As for "Original" I defer to the logic of Creed's Original Vetiver, which, not being a vetiver perfume, implies that Original Santal will not be a sandalwood fragrance.

    There are a few possibilities for Creed making a sandalwood fragrance today. 1) The Creeds have hoarded pre-ban sandalwood in the wine cellars of their ancestral castle. 2) They rely on synthetic sandalwood chemicals. 3) They recreate a sandalwood scent using other elements such as cedar, woody ambers, rosewood, lactones, etc.. 4) They make a fragrance that has no particular relationship to the scent of sandalwood. 5) When thay say Mysore, they mean Australia sandalwood. My money is on # 4, but 2, 3 and 5 have a ring of truth to them.

    Sandalwood oil has a number of olfactory qualities, all of which can be sensed in harmony but are clear enough to be singled out. Woodiness, sweetness, creaminess, tartness. Richness, really. OS takes the slightly wrong angle of each quality and mixes them into a murky, lingering perfume. It smells a bit like rum sick to me, but to read the reviews at rating sites like Basenotes and Fragrantica, a lot of people enjoy it.

    I know I spend more time writing about Creed's talk than their perfume. And while I do believe that all marketing is equal, the differences being stylistic, Creed want to sell you a particular fiction phrased as history before they even start to sell you a perfume. Their implication of authenticity in a bottle should be questioned as closely as their perfume. Creed engender devotees as often as they do conspiracy theorists. People either seem to fall for the story or they mistrust it. Other than Irisia, which I am partial to, I haven't found a Creed that I enjoy. Though Creed's marketing schtick is particularly ludicrous and pretentious, is it really any worse than, say, Chanel or Taylor Swift? If you accept that all marketing is lies told for the sole purpose of luring you in, then style and story really make no difference.



    But Creed's marketing and mythology are such an easy read that it becomes fun. When the life of leisure and affluence is sold to you over and over with each perfume, you come to realize that they're not even trying to sell you the image of a particular lifestyle, but the very notion of aspiration. As for Original Santal itself, a century late in the game Creed want to sell you not just a perfume but an empire.

    Reading between the lines of the name tells you a bit about this this perfume up front. The name and the date of release tell you the same thing twice--there won't be much real mysore sandalwood to it. "Santal": commercial sandalwood harvesting has been banned in India since the late 1990s and the dwindling supply available is too expensive for largescale commercial perfume use. As for "Original" I defer to the logic of Creed's Original Vetiver, which, not being a vetiver perfume, implies that Original Santal will not be a sandalwood fragrance.

    There are a few possibilities for Creed making a sandalwood fragrance today. 1) The Creeds have hoarded pre-ban sandalwood in the wine cellars of their ancestral castle. 2) They rely on synthetic sandalwood chemicals. 3) They recreate a sandalwood scent using other elements such as cedar, woody ambers, rosewood, lactones, etc.. 4) They make a fragrance that has no particular relationship to the scent of sandalwood. 5) When thay say Mysore, they mean Australia sandalwood. My money is on # 4, but 2, 3 and 5 have a ring of truth to them.

    Sandalwood oil has a number of olfactory qualities, all of which can be sensed in harmony but are clear enough to be singled out. Woodiness, sweetness, creaminess, tartness. Richness, really. OS takes the slightly wrong angle of each quality and mixes them into a murky, lingering perfume. It smells a bit like rum sick to me, but to read the reviews at rating sites like Basenotes and Fragrantica, a lot of people enjoy it.

    I know I spend more time writing about Creed's talk than their perfume. And while I do believe that all marketing is equal, the differences being stylistic, Creed want to sell you a particular fiction phrased as history before they even start to sell you a perfume. Their implication of authenticity in a bottle should be questioned as closely as their perfume. Creed engender devotees as often as they do conspiracy theorists. People either seem to fall for the story or they mistrust it. Other than Irisia, which I am partial to, I haven't found a Creed that I enjoy. Though Creed's marketing schtick is particularly ludicrous and pretentious, is it really any worse than, say, Chanel or Taylor Swift? If you accept that all marketing is lies told for the sole purpose of luring you in, then style and story really make no difference.



    But Creed's marketing and mythology are such an easy read that it becomes fun. When the life of leisure and affluence is sold to you over and over with each perfume, you come to realize that they're not even trying to sell you the image of a particular lifestyle, but the very notion of aspiration. As for Original Santal itself, a century late in the game Creed want to sell you not just a perfume but an empire.

    Reading between the lines of the name tells you a bit about this this perfume up front. The name and the date of release tell you the same thing twice--there won't be much real mysore sandalwood to it. "Santal": commercial sandalwood harvesting has been banned in India since the late 1990s and the dwindling supply available is too expensive for largescale commercial perfume use. As for "Original" I defer to the logic of Creed's Original Vetiver, which, not being a vetiver perfume, implies that Original Santal will not be a sandalwood fragrance.

    There are a few possibilities for Creed making a sandalwood fragrance today. 1) The Creeds have hoarded pre-ban sandalwood in the wine cellars of their ancestral castle. 2) They rely on synthetic sandalwood chemicals. 3) They recreate a sandalwood scent using other elements such as cedar, woody ambers, rosewood, lactones, etc.. 4) They make a fragrance that has no particular relationship to the scent of sandalwood. 5) When thay say Mysore, they mean Australia sandalwood. My money is on # 4, but 2, 3 and 5 have a ring of truth to them.

    Sandalwood oil has a number of olfactory qualities, all of which can be sensed in harmony but are clear enough to be singled out. Woodiness, sweetness, creaminess, tartness. Richness, really. OS takes the slightly wrong angle of each quality and mixes them into a murky, lingering perfume. It smells a bit like rum sick to me, but to read the reviews at rating sites like Basenotes and Fragrantica, a lot of people enjoy it.

    I know I spend more time writing about Creed's talk than their perfume. And while I do believe that all marketing is equal, the differences being stylistic, Creed want to sell you a particular fiction phrased as history before they even start to sell you a perfume. Their implication of authenticity in a bottle should be questioned as closely as their perfume.

    30th November, 2012





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