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The top notes were almost non existent the first and second times I wore it - a light sprinkling of aromatic (mint?) that has a slight 'ozonic/fresh' accord that had me a little scared but faded nicely into a kind of icy synthetic note. Something you might smell in the outer edges of those Sherbet Series that CdG does. Not the most 'typical' top notes right? But then, this is Le Labo were talking about...
The weird top notes above do feature vanilla - but it is almost peeking out from behind the other notes. Pops its head up ever-so-often to let you know that it's there, but it is an entirely different animal than other 'luxury vanillas' (Tobacco Vanille by T Ford or Spiriteuse Double Vanille by Guerlain). No hint of any gourmand sweetness, yet the vanilla note has a syrupy quality to my nose. Have you ever sniffed the top of a Light Corn Syrup bottle (used for baking)? I'm thinking the vanilla note has this kind of olfactory effect. Not vanilla extract - rather something that smells vanilla prominent and yet holds it's sweetness in light, transparent folds. If I'm not making any sense, my apologies - but this is a tricky note to describe in words.
After some time on my skin it replicated 'Guerlainade'. My first thought when I realized this was, Oh - well of course Le Labo released this in the Paris, France Le Labo boutique. Those French (who are incredibly familiar with Guerlain) will 'get' the vanilla note. Perhaps that's an incorrect assumption but I must say at about 2-3 hours on my skin the vanilla note positively radiated off of my skin - all of the time at a low hushed, very close to the skin aura. It has the subtle skin vanilla scent done well, albeit a very low longevity (5 hours max).
Oh yes...the bottle is about $500 for a 100 ml bottle. And can only be bought at the Colette store in Paris, France. Well, isn't that special!?
03rd October, 2008