I got malled at BBW — on a research project regarding pumpkin scents. I ended up trying their three different pumpkin room sprays on my hands and arms (Caramel, Spiced and Perfect?) along with some other fall-ish stuff … by the time I left there I smelled like I’d been in an accident at the pie factory. I smelled like The Pie Slut. I smelled like Pumpkin Greedy. The funny part? A random guy followed me through the mall telling me how great I smelled. And then in line at the post office, another guy did the same thing! I guess men really do love it when women smell like dessert.
Today’s nail (quick, someone, stage an intervention!!) is Nicole OPI in Ni-Coal (a gunmetal silver nail polish) with NYC’s Starry Silver Glitter on top. The multi-colored glitter looks fantastic on that background, if I do say so myself. But let’s move on.
Since Patty is doing the highfalutin’ scent blogging this week, with two obscure, niche $$$$ scents, I’m here with Perfume For The Masses Part Whatever — two new Kenzos! Because you know I love me some Kenzo. First up: Kenzo Winter Flowers (a flanker of the original FlowerbyKenzo) which I was kind of afraid to smell, because I keep seeing the word “powdery” and because the consensus at reliable sources like Now Smell This is that if the original Flower didn’t do much for you, this probably wouldn’t either.
I admire the original Kenzo Flower (she said diplomatically), but I much prefer the woody-incense Flower Oriental, or even Flower le Parfum. And I am really looking forward to the upcoming KenzoAmour parfum, while we are on the topic of Kenzo. The Winter Flowers bottle, as always, is lovely.
And the juice? Very interesting. I won’t be buying a bottle (and you will soon see why) but it wasn’t because I was bored.
Kenzo Flower the original has wild hawthorne, rose, violet, cassia, hedione, cyclosal, opoponax, white musk and vanilla, and smells like very expensive face powder to me. It’s a nice, pretty powder, but powder is powder and that’s that. The dominant florals are the rose and violet, in the exact powdery way some makeup smells like rose and violet.
Kenzo Winter Flowers has notes of mandarin, violet leaf, camellia, hellebore, patchouli and vanilla. I have never smelled a camellia that had any scent other than a faint vegetal plant smell (I thought they were grown for their appearance?) but I could be wrong. The best part of Winter Flowers is, given a few minutes it reeks — first of what I assume must be the hellebore on me, and then later of the patchouli — the dirty kind, not the medicinal kind. Someone chime in here — it’s got that distinct stink of hawthorne, that buttered-feet smell that is both wildly compelling and a little gross. Robin at NST notes in her review that hellebores are part of the buttercup family, and hawthorne smells to me like buttercups times ten. Hellebores can have a variety of scents, and maybe there’s a reeking hawthorne-ish one too? I know you can buy stinking hellebores — literally, helleborus foetidus.
I have tried this several times (courtesy of Sephora) and on my skin 1) it is unisexy/masculine once you get past the first five citrus-y minutes and 2) I find it mildly repellent, yet I cannot stop sniffing my hand when I am wearing it. There is something wonderfully, compulsively sniffable about that patch-buttered-feet-vanilla drydown I can’t get enough of. The vanilla reminds me a bit of Annick Goutal’s Vanille Exquise — sharp and a little burnt. I am pretty sure I don’t want to walk around wafting this, but I may change my mind. Stranger things have happened. As always, YMMV (your results may vary). Robin found it a palatable alternative to Flower and not much more, really.
Kenzo Power, I am sorry to say, was a snoozefest. Despite the gorgeous, heavy bottle (the heft in my hand, you have no idea! look at it! that’s it to the right, the photo doesn’t do it credit), the creative work of Olivier Polge, and the delicious sounding notes — bergamot, coriander, cardamom, tolu balsam, cedarwood, labdanum — it goes on light and citrusy and … well, kind of dull. It falls squarely into the category of those super-light Kenzos for people who don’t want to smell like much of anything. It’s inoffensive, less weirdly powdery than the Peace/Vintage Edition, and … meh. It’s possible to do a light, weird spice scent — CdG 8 88 comes to mind — but this thing I can do without. Keeping my fingers crossed for the lovely gold KenzoAmour Le Parfum…