The design house of the late Alexander McQueen (not unlike Vivienne Westwood) was very interested in the use of images of European aristocrats and royalty. For much of history of the Western world, fashion and taste was dictated by aristocrats and also by popular stage performers, both male and female. Today, fashion is dictated by the aristocracy of the media: the celebrities.

Nevertheless, I sampled My Queen by Alexander McQueen and was struck by it's genderless qualities. In fact, this might even qualify as a "masculine," the purple-girly bottle and the name aside. I am one of the first to say, "Wear what you like regardless of the bottle or the label," but these are my observations.

My Queen was released in 2005 after the controversial Kingdom. It is, in fact, a toned-down version of Kingdom. It's my understanding that it goes beyond the three-tier pyramid to four levels of notes:

(From Marina Geigert's blog, "Perfume Smellin' Things): Marvelous (Parma violet and sweet almond), Dazzling (orange blossom absolute, white musk and heliotrope), Mysterious (patchouli, cedar and vetiver) and Intoxicating (Florentine iris and vanilla).

The drydown is surely unisex, with the patchouli, cedar, vetiver, iris and vanilla. As for another "queen," ELdO's Delicious Closet Queen attempts to start with a masculine exterior with feminine underneath, My Queen attempts to start with a floral set of feminine notes with a masculine set of base notes.

This does have a floral opening, but ends with a predominantly patchouli base note. Good staying power and sillage.