Hey, that candy post was fun. It’s been awhile since I felt the gluttonous urge, and I’m enjoying it. Let´s do it again.
Jacques Fath Iris Gris – I know, I just did this Monday, but Teri wrote in the comments that Iris Gris “is the fragrance of a fully mature, elegant and accomplished woman, impeccably dressed and groomed. Her thoughts have turned in upon themselves as she looks back at the joys and accomplishments of her life, juxtaposed against the waning days of her future. It isn´t melancholy, exactly, more like triste. There is wistfulness in her thoughts, but not sadness. She is in the autumn of a life well-lived and well-remembered.” I wish I’d written that. Thanks, Teri, that was beautiful.
Amouage Jubilation XXV for Women – I was reading the blurb on the atomizer card, which said, “A sophisticated bouquet of white flowers crowns the fragrance with richness and depth while embracing musks and woods wrapped with warm amber notes blah blah blah.” In the meantime I was smelling: cumincumincumin cuMincuMINCumin CuminCUMINCUMINCUMIN. And my addled brain was going “huh?” And then I realized I was reading the blurb for Amouage Reflection (they advertise their other scents on the Jubilation card.) Anyhoo, Luca Turin and Robin have both said it smells like Diorella, and it does – about nine hours later, on my skin. But for the first nine hours it´s like burying my nose in the world´s finest, most beautiful armpit. Don´t get me wrong; it´s gorgeous. I like armpit. And if I didn´t have other cumin-rich scents to fall back on, I´d be more interested. If you get something much more complex and less cumin-heavy, as Marina clearly does (she says Jubilation is the love child of Femme and Arabie), swoon away. Femme and Kingdom pretty much fill my Giant Cumin Bomb needs.
Black Widow – I really want what Donna’s getting — sort of a comfort-scent Opium, if that’s not too oxmoronic for you. (Opium is my comfort-scent Opium.) Instead I get that weird, sweet, brain-damaging chemical note you get from polish remover, or going into a nail salon. This is not a smell I enjoy. Scrubber, and too bad. The bottle´s hilarious, though. I´m keeping it just to look at it.
Chanel No. 5 parfum – I tried the EdP for the millionth time a couple months ago when I was comparing it to Eau Premiere, and I was shocked to see I´d finally come around to it. I´m older, and my tolerance for aldehydes is obviously increasing, but even so – for the first time in my life it struck me as something I could feel comfortable in. I´d not tried the parfum, and Kim sent me a sample in my weird swap. No. 5 parfum, as you would expect, is exponentially finer and richer – the effervescence of the aldehydes and the dusting of powder are much more subdued, and the fragrance is floral without smelling sweet or old-fashioned. I get something like tobacco, or hay, along with my rose, jasmine and ylang. Do I like it better? I am not sure. Kim very helpfully sent a samp of the EdP so I could do an arm-to-arm comparison. The parfum is unquestionably a “better” fragrance – deeper, and certainly more long lasting – but lovely as it is, this may be one of those cases when I like the rough sparkle of the EdP better.
Arabian Oud Black Musk essence – When Patty sends me a sample pack of skank, and one small vial in there is bagged separately, I know I am in for a treat. Black Musk essence goes on so dark (literally) that a single drop of the oil stained my skin orange. It set up camp in the mildewed cave of my nose and proceeded to spread out some fresh animal skins, burn some incense, and start a smoky fire with dried dung.
Black Musk Essence reminds me of going into a small ethnic grocery and being assailed by the intoxicating foreign smells. How many of you go into those places to sniff around, or is it some weird fetish of mine? The mystery spices, the oils, the dusty boxes, the cellophane bags of dried squid; I could drink that in for hours. I go into those stores periodically and assemble a meal using whatever I can find written in English on the back of the shrimp paste can, the chili sauce bottle, the rice noodle bag or whatever. In contrast, I am fascinated by how big-box American stores, our mainstays (Giant, Safeway, etc.) smell mostly like … nothing. They are clean and sterile and, unless you’re gagging your way through the miasma of the detergent/cleaning aisle, scent-free. We want our food to be packaged by lint-free angels and smell like clean air. Even places like Whole Foods smell like organic lavender soap and $30 shade-grown coffee and not much else. What is up with that? Does our American paranoia about smells affect our grocery stores? I remember in Vienna, walking from the (sweets/cans/jars) first floor to the (savory) second floor of Julius Meinl, a food emporium I could spend the rest of my life in, and being hit with the overpowering smell of aged cheese and meat. It took my breath away; it was simultaneously shocking and mouthwatering. No wonder Americans are such smell wussies; our lives are shrink-wrapped to protect us from vivid reality. Anyway. For any of you adventurers out there, Black Musk Essence is sort of truffly. Two thumbs up. Don’t spill it in your car. I wonder what will happen if I layer it with ….
Arabian Oud Jasmine Essence – Ahahaha!!! The Cheese just walked by me and made a face!!! Hey, you know what he does? He complains that I wear his sweaters around the house, because of the way they smell when I give them back. Go figure. This jasmine is nice, smooth like vanilla custard. It’s not that rank. It’s not as rank on me as the Montale, or even the Armani Prive. There’s a green note in there I really like.
I’m feeling the skank love today, so I’m trying another round of my favorite layering mistake: Mitsouko Plus Something. Good luck layering Mitsouko. Mitsouko figures she is all you need (sometimes more than you need) and she doesn’t take kindly to being layered. Mostly she just eats her competitor. But I got to thinking I might get her to play with Black Musk. And … yeah, that’s fine. I mean, it’s sick and it’s wrong, and if this combo had a name it would be Hello, Sailor! (how do we say that in French? Bonjour, … something). You know that high-pitched part of Mitsouko? A pinprick-sized dot of Black Musk covers it like a velvet cape. Wear it to your family holiday get-together and see if your brother-in-law hits on you.
Correction to Monday’s post — The Roja Dove scents are EdP and parfum, not EdT and EdP.
Dubai souk: townandcountrytravelmag.com