Perfume Directory

But Not Today (2018)
by Unum

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But Not Today information

Year of Launch2018
GenderShared / Unisex
AvailabilityIn Production
Average Rating
(based on 11 votes)

People and companies

HouseUnum
Creative DirectorFilippo Sorcinelli

About But Not Today

But Not Today is a shared / unisex perfume by Unum. The scent was launched in 2018

Reviews of But Not Today

But Not Today by UNUM is, as you’d expect from Filippo Sorcinelli, pretty much all high concept. The man can’t launch a perfume without immersing his audience in a full body experience involving dimmed lights, a concert, an art installation, and a little light whipping/bondage (I’m joking about the last part. I think). Usually, in copywriting, my experience has been the higher-fallutin’ the concept, the emptier the perfume experience, but I’ll give UNUM this: they follow through.

The inspiration for But Not Today is surprisingly pop culture in origin: The Silence of the Lambs movie. I am a huge Hannibal Lecter fan, and especially of the newer Hannibal series on NBC featuring my secret husband, Mads Mikkelsen, so to say I was hooked on the premise well in advance of smelling it is an understatement. Anything Hannibal-related is rich in olfactory and culinary references, an untrammeled joy for fragrance aficionados. There are numerous references to perfume in Hannibal (Jar, for example), but the direct inspiration for But Not Today comes from a pivotal scene in The Silence of the Lambs, when Hannibal is demonstrating his preternatural powers of observation to Clarice Starling in their first meeting. He smells the air around her and tells her, in that sibilant, sinister softness of voice, “You use Evian skin cream, and sometimes you wear L’Air du Temps, but not today”.

But Not Today smells startling. It is wholly original, and therefore difficult to describe. You end up mashing together two separate narratives: it smells metallic and bloody (because Hannibal) but also spicy and carnationy (because L’Air du Temps). Yet I’m not sure it captures the entire scope of the perfume.

But Not Today doesn’t smell entirely pleasant. Imagine, if you will, Hannibal marinating steaks taken from the inner thigh of one of his victims in pepper, bay leaf, oregano, and a range of exotic, dried esoterica from his spice rack. The kitchen is ripe with the milky-meaty decay of lilies, but there is also the unmistakably metallic, watery scent of blood running off the steak as the spices in the marinade wick moisture to the surface. You can smell the hot metal of the carving knife, the cheesy taint of indolic flowers, raw meat, and blood, but also, strangely, a waft of savory fruit, like kumquats preserved in salt. Someone like Hannibal would have preserved kumquats in his kitchen. It is a strange smell, both intensely perfumey and intensely not – more working kitchen than perfume.

But Not Today evolves into a castoreum leather that mines the same dusty-wet thematic vein as Vierges et Toreros by Etat Libre d’Orange. Vierges et Toreros is one of those rare perfumes that give me a clear vision of a scene every time I smell it. The second I inhale, I am a gladiator in Rome, slain by a sudden jab of the sword to my side, and as I breathe my last breath into the red-brown dust, I am intensely aware of the smells around me: my own blood – warm and metallic – the dust, the cracked leather hide of my scabbard, sweat, and the sickly sweetness of white flowers on the turn. Truly an unpleasant, jolting experience. But imaginative. Original.

Carnation does much to boost the dustiness quotient of any perfume, but joining it to the overblown, green wetness of lily pushes the stomach-churning to the next level. In the drydown of But Not Today, the castoreum additionally throws in a tobacco-ish or chocolate tonality that highlights the soft, dusty matte texture of the leather. I’m not sure what’s creating the very strong scent of aromatic soap, though. Maybe it’s Hannibal himself, his freshly-shaven face suddenly too close for comfort, or the lingering whiff of Will’s Old Spice.

I wouldn’t wear But Not Today any more than I’d wear Vierges et Toreros. But I admit that it is a thoroughly unusual, artistic fragrance that pushes the boat out even further than the lines suggested by the concept itself. This is a good example of a perfume, therefore, that over-delivers on a concept.
24th June, 2020
I smell celery. I smell something like burnt chocolate next. A hint of rubber. Some animal note, as of waste material or foul nether regions, briefly. I get light floral notes in the air. More skank, mixed with lily and jasmine.

The oddness of BNT begins as an artistic experiment, a thing. For me, it eventually settles into something enjoyable. I begin to detect a metallic note. It mingles with indolic odors, throw in some animal funk, some leather, and you've got a trademark Filippo offering. His, are always exciting to sample; some are a challenge to wear.

The sillage offers more "sweetness", than directly on the skin. The sillage has a more high-pitched note to it.

BNT settles into a resinous, balsamic accord later, with leather, still. I find this very enjoyable overall.
10th April, 2019
Floral, herbal-earthy opening, reminds me of other oregano scents. Not pleasant at all to me. Can't see either gender enjoying this.

Good projection, especially during the first 4-5 hours. Lasts about 8 hours total.
14th January, 2019

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