A Tale of Two Perfumes

It was the best of times, it was the worst of times… 

Well, so far… it’s been a really good summer for stuff I’ve sniffed and fallen in love with. Yeah, there have been some stinkers in the past month, one of which will get a mention here –  I keep hoping it’s a mistake – but it’s been a pretty good crop of just new things to me.

Les Larmes Sacrees de Thebes — Good Lord, that refill bottle, as March warned me, is a ugly little thing — cheap metal with a white plastic cap, but a royal purple label on it… and the words Baccarat and the name of the perfume in gold letters.  Listen, I know it’s the refill and not as spendy as the bottle, but could they have at least picked up a nicer cap or a plain bottle from Madina?  If I saw this in a store, I would assume inside was some horrible homemade perfume swill my kids mixed up just to make fun of my perfume obsession.  I’ve read raves on this thing all over the perfume boards and never really thought I’d get to smell it. It has notes of Jasmine, Geranium, Ylang Ylang, Pepper, Cardamon, Basil, Myrtle, Amber, Musk, Sandalwood and Myrrh.  You know, if you were to pick my nose (not literally) and my brain for the notes that are most likely to make me squeal in joy, those would be most of them.  Anyway, after March and Lee came sashaying back from their jaunt just fawning over this thing and disclosing there was a refill to be had at a lesser than 1,000 # price (all you Brits can just hush up about that # for pounds, there is NO pounds sterling symbol on my keyboard and I’m hopeless at remembering ascii character code), I knew it had to be mine.  The fabulous Marcel zipped it to me spectacularly fast, I tore into the package like a fiend, causing my mother no end of concern about the depths of my obsession, pulled out that ugly little bottle, unscrewed it (this is like unscrewing a bottle of Cristal Rose), sniffed deeply and thought….

Parfum Sacre Extrait, come to mama!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I adore Parfum Sacre Extrait to the depth and breadth of my being, and I horde my little bottles — yes, I have two now, shhh! — like they were the Original Ten Commandments with a piece of God’s beard fluff hanging off the stone.  Are they exactly the same? No.  PS is a little sweeter, but they both share that deep woody resin that feels like you are in a temple made out of the most beautiful wood and incense — rich, contemplative scents that could not be more perfect than if Jesus had sat down at a nose organ. Lots of references to the holy, I know, but both of these scents tend to evoke a cuddly reverence.  Sorta like how I felt as a child during Sunday School when we sang “How Great Thou Art,” just reverent and joyful and content.   So while the Parfum Sacre extrait is almost impossible to get anymore, the Les Larmes Sacrees de Thebes is slightly less impossible for the right price. Now, I’ve heard and just scored a bottle of the EDP of this, which I didn’t know they made. Anyone have more info on where this is available?  And how different it is from the parfum? Well, I’ll know soon enough, I guess, but I’d love to know who might still sell the EDP as it’s slightly more affordable.

Next up for total get down and roll around in the mud pig happy is Bruno Acampora Musc.  Notes of Musk, Rose, Violet, Vanilla, Cloves, Amber, Sandalwood.  Musk is difficult for me to wear, just toooo something, I can only take it for a little while before I long to have it vamoose off of me, even my beloved Musc Ravageur, and it hangs around forever.  This scent is an oil, and I can verify that it lasts and lasts and lasts. Oils are usually difficult for me to wear too, they turn plasticky smelling or they disappear.  Not so with this one. Now, it’s pretty linear and changes little, but that’s a great thing.  It starts off with an earthy musky aspect, then the blend of cloves and amber and other notes makes the heavy aspect I usually get with musk fragrances disappear.  There’s quite a lot of good amber, and I swear I smell patch in there too. The sillage is phenomenal. One drop on my wrist, and every time I moved, I could smell it. When I got into my truck and shut the door, the truck filled with the smell on my wrist, it was heavenly  — well, and a little Sballo was in there too, which is a post for another day… can we say hey hay!? I put a drop of this on my mom, who was recuperating at my house the last few days, and she swooned too. She almost never swoons over perfume, but she did on this one and CB I Hate Perfume’s Tea/Rose.  Not sure what that means, but we’re afraid if she gets to three perfumes she loves and stays in love with, the triad will have been formed, the Four Horsemen will be stabling in my garage.  Word of warning, if you are looking for a musk like CB’s musk or musc ravageur or any other skanky musk, you won’t find it here, there’s just no overt naughty bits rolling about, just more subtle ones. For me, I find it enchanting and beautiful, with a tremendous sillage.  It’s just not going to be the musk some of you probably have in your head when you think musk.

Now for the swill of the group, I think… but maybe not.  I found a bottle of the new Narciso Rodriguez for Him on eBay. The seller is reputable and says they got it from a duty free store, and it was a pre-release bottle. It says mock-up on the back. Why do I tell you all that? Because I was so jacked to get it, thinking they would do something pretty wonderful for men, like the women’s, and I put it on and thought…  there must be a mistake, they filled this bottle with the same men’s scent that everyone has been making the last four years?!?!  Nothing ground-breaking or great?!  Anyway, as scents go, I guess it’s not so bad. The notes are suppoed to be musk, amber, violet leaf and patchouli, but I swear I don’t get this out of that bottle. So I am hoping against hope that this was some mocked up bottle filled with something else and the real NR for Him is NOT in there.  It can’t be it!  I would far rather have thrown away $80 than to find out that this really is what they plan to put in there.  Anyone know what it means when a bottle says mock-up?  Please tell me it just means “filled with some other juice, silly, we just want to show you the bottle.” 

38 Comments
Louise June 5, 2007

Oh Thank You, Maria-you have saved me. If the perfume disappears on you...well I am just going to assume it will on me. Thanks!

winterwheat June 5, 2007

Dang. Dang dang dang. You are making me want to order BA Musc unsniffed. It's a bad thing when I order unsniffed. I feel dirty after, like I've been gambling. But... oh my. In this case I think it might be worth it. Dang. :(;)

Maria June 5, 2007

Les Larmes started calling my name when I first heard its name, and everything I read about it makes it sound more irresistible (resins, temples)--except the price. Then I tell myself that it wouldn't work on me as well as on others. That's how I rescue myself from perdition. Last night I tried a sample of JAR Bolt of Lightning. From the first moment, I loved it, and to make matters worse, my DH loved it. He decided immediately that it was unisex. "It's very expensive," I warned him. "How expensive?" I looked it up and broke the news to him. He looked crestfallen. Then something good happened a half hour after I'd dabbed on the fragrance. "Smell my arm," I asked him. "Faint, no?" I was doing a little Snoopy dance, and he didn't understand why. "It vanishes on me! I won't be dying to get it!" Still, it's very nice to be able to enjoy the exciting and quite remarkable transformations the scent goes through on my arm one half hour at a time while the sample lasts. :)

Bryan June 5, 2007

Patty, I agree with March, girl...you need to be working for the CIA. Actually, don't, we'd miss you too much. OK, I am this close to getting some Brunos...like tuberose. I just don't really love oils. Help me out here, 'cause I do enjoy some Yosh. I need some Sacred Tears I think. I just can't help myself when a lady swoons. How do I find Parfum Sacre extrait? I used to have the edp and I haven't smelled it in years. Love ya sweety.:)

violetnoir June 5, 2007

I love the Bruno line, especially Sballo. I don't generally like perfume oils, but when my luckyscent friends gave me a dab of the Sballo several months ago, I could not wait for it to debut. I know that everyone, including the beautiful you, raves about the Musc, but that Sballo has me going. In fact, I am wearing it today and loving its beautiful sillage wafting all around me. As for the NR: I agree with Robin that it must have been a factice??? Hugs and love!

Justine Tamaro June 5, 2007

I tried the Brun Musc yesterday and am going to have to try it again today because I got mostly violets on some white musk. The smallest hint of cloves, but no patch at all. Just not getting that, and I'd like to. I got some powder with my violets, and a little rose too. It ended up making me think of L'Huere Bleue layered over Clair de Musc. I'll have to try that combination someday now that I've tried the musc. I didn't get sensuous, spicy, or sexy as Luckyscent seemed to think I would. I got pretty and light.

Robin June 5, 2007

Ack -- hoping along with you that the NR was a factice and not the real thing. I do think men in general are getting better releases this year than women, but still, I know lots of people are looking forward to this one and it will be too bad if it is dull.

Amy June 5, 2007

Sick. SICK! I am SICK with envy. I've been carrying a torch for Les Larmes for two years now, since my trip to London. It's the perfume that shines at the light of a veeeeeeeery long tunnel, the pot of perfume gold at the end of my rainbow. "Someday," I always thought, "some very fine day..." Very wistful... I seem to have completely missed all this Bruno whosis stuff. I need to look into this. My Grandpap's name was Bruno. Who's selling it? Patty, have you set dates for Paris?

Jennifer June 5, 2007

I am so sad to hear the news about NR for him; I had such high hopes, considering the woman's scent is so groundbreakingly unique. That musk sounds gorgeous and I am a musk addict.

pitbull friend June 5, 2007

Ah, Patty! Sometimes reading this is like being in a big ward full of patients and thinking.... "Oh, so that's how bad it's going to be when I get into the advanced stages of this disease..." I can only hope that, by then, I will have grown as amusing as you are! :x --Ellen

Marina June 5, 2007

"The Original Ten Commandments with a piece of God’s beard fluff hanging off the stone". Patty, I heart you, mwah! :d:d:d

Lee June 5, 2007

All we need now if for the real Jesus to come along and do his loaves and fishes business with your ugly little bottle. PLEASE! I don't ask for much in life, oh holy one. As for musks, unless they're dirty, I don't understand them (they go into the perfume chasm in my brain where they ferster up a stink with the likes of those chypres I just can't do). As for mock-up - your guess is probably better than mine. Love you, baby Jesus!o:-)

Elle June 5, 2007

I did *not* want to develop a lemming for Les Larmes. The sane, moderately budget part of my brain was screaming that I should just skip over reading your review and go straight to the Bruno Musc, but, no...obviously I didn't listen and just got hopelessly sucked in. My one hope is that ger*n**m note. Can't say I had much hope for NR for Him since I never managed to get the magic of the women's scent. That definitely was a musk my nose is unable to detect.

Judith June 5, 2007

Oh, I don't think I can stand this. I am just debating (after having run through about half of my decant) whether I REALLY need a bottle of Nasomatto Absinth (of course I do; compliment from DH this morning--but I am TRYING to save for Paris), and you make me drool over ever more spendy things. *tries--probably in vain--to plug ears*

chayaruchama June 5, 2007

As much as I adore you two, I'm afraid of the Larmes. [I need another lemming like a GIANT hole in my cranial vault...] But I'm SQUEALING with delight... That means I'm really going to love my Musc when it arrives ! [Does the demented yoga-nun victory dance...] Also, am clutching my big EDP and residual extrait to bosom, trembling with fear.. [Because YOU GUYS KNOW where I LIVE, lol !] I feel like Stimpy... and that's a good thing. MWAH !

March June 5, 2007

Woman, where do you find these things?!?! I went looking for that EDP and never did find it... your sleuthing skills are amazing, you should chuck your job and become a detective. Also, I love that photo so much! I want to jump in, actually. Also, the Cheese asked me to ask you: remember the ladder photo of the two dudes trimming the hedge, one ladder on the other? The OSHA "Don't" type photo? He wants to know if it was a joke. Do you know? (I told him I had no doubt there's some poor guys out there right now doing that in, say, the Hamptons...)