First off: there was confusion and word incorrectly got out that the Chi-cocoa Scentsation event in September is “by invitation only” and people are asking how you get invited. ANYONE CAN COME to the event. Just please RSVP to chicocoascentsation (at) gmail (dot) com so we can set up for an accurate number of people. We´re charging a fee (I think it´s $20?) which covers the refreshments and doodads for the presentation space for Neil Morris and Liz Zorn to do their thing. If Musette will chime in here with the details, I think the PayPal account is set up.
Okay, having yanked everyone´s chain recently with the Dior Addict post, I felt the irresistible urge to touch the third rail again after reading during my research that a number of people like Addict Eau Fraiche better, consider it a superior fragrance (I know for some of you that´s a pretty low bar) and think that, in the words of one Basenotes reviewer, “Dior Addict Eau Fraiche is the UPGRADE!”
Dior Addict Eau Fraiche – and is it just me, or does the weirdness of that name make anyone else giggle? – was also composed by Theirry Wasser in 2004, two years after the original, with notes of mandarin leaf, vanilla, bergamot, gardenia, Bulgarian rose, tuberose, jasmine, rosewood, and sandalwood. For comparison purposes, the original Addict is a floral oriental with notes including mandarin leaf, silk tree flower; night-blooming cereus, rose, jasmine, orange blossom, bourbon vanilla absolute, Mysore sandalwood and tonka bean.
I love Addict. I took an informal survey among a few male friends (having allowed time for the drydown) and the unanimous vote was: sexy. If there´s anything addictive about Addict, it´s the fact that it lies somewhere between a dozen cupcakes and something more illicit. Diva smelled Addict on me and gave me an extremely rare omigodyousmellsooooogood! She´s hammering me for my little bottle, but I told her I´m not giving it to her until next fall, because it´s definitely not something I want to encounter for the next five months. I know a few of you came out of the woodwork on my Addict post to join me in my one-woman fan club, and the rest of you think it´s dreck.
Anyone reading those notes can spot some overlap between the two, but honestly, scent-wise the relationship is pretty tenuous. Addict Eau Fraiche pretty much misses the entire point of Addict, which is to experience the Poison-ish sensation of drowning in a giant vat of floral-tinged, spicy, vanilla-honey sweetness. In fact, I´m not the first person to note that the original Addict bears more than a passing resemblance to Hypnotic Poison. If Eau Fraiche blows in your ear, then Addict gives you a sloppy, drunken French kiss before staggering down the street and passing out on the hood of a car, hopefully without vomiting on your shoes first.
The top notes of Eau Fraiche are weird – tart and leafy and a little sour, and you can tell right away it´s much, much more civilized than the original. The rose, tuberose and jasmine are sweet but not overbearingly so. I was at the point of dismissing it as not interesting enough to review when I caught a smell reminiscent of tanning oil on salty skin. The sandalwood is more prominent than in the original, giving Eau Fraiche a pleasingly raspy counterbalance to the florals.
Looking for an illustration to accompany this post, I stumbled across this New York Times rendering of “a revived Coney Island” that clarified my attraction to Addict Eau Fraiche. There’s something surreal and exuberant about it — it’s a little Coney Island, but a cleaned-up version, and it doesn’t work my last nerve after three hours with its mania like Gucci Rush does.
I´m impressed by Eau Fraiche. I have no idea what the brief was – I assume it read something like: make us a lot of money. But it manages to be both commercially approachable and interesting. I have a fondness for a kind of subtle scent that conjures up the sense of skin – warm, salty, and subtly sexy. Eau Fraiche peters out a little after three hours, at which point I can reapply and (unlike with many of my other fragrances) not worry overmuch about where I´ll be heading next and whether it will offend anyone. I think you could get away with this in your office. At the same time I enjoy its oblique, playful sensuality. You could do a lot worse, and I wish this were available at Sephora along with (or maybe instead of) Addict´s other flankers. I have never seen it in stores (and I think it’s an LE) but it is found easily enough online.
Coney Island rendering: nytimes.com
PS. Progress in the shoe dept.! In addition to finding a couple pairs of wedges I can fit my orthotics in, I have purchased the following: an open-toed wedge so my tootsies can breathe; a thong sandal (yay!) with an allegedly deep-enough heel cup and high arch (we will see when they get here, aren’t they fab? they come in hot pink croc leather too); and those cute red sporty wedges that go great with the red patent leather purse.