Christian Dior Poison. It was 1985 and I was fascinated by that gorgeous green box and the lovely crystalline stopper adorning that curvy, tempting aubergine bottle.
I.Wanted.That. Wanted it in the small spray, in the miniature parfum, in body products, in each and every form it came in. It was one of the few products that I’ve out-and-out craved.
And the juice inside — well, it was simply like nothing else I had ever smelled: captivating, intense and near-narcotic in its lushness.
Poison’s heady potion of plum, tuberose and jasmine rushed out of the bottle, intoxicating and nearly over the top. Just in the nick of time, the woods, spices and musk stepped in to warm it and rein it in, taking its sultry glamour down to slightly more wearable levels. When I put it on, I couldn’t help feeling sophisticated and — dare I say it — rather exotic. Which, if you know me, is almost laughable.
It really was a stunner, though, despite its obvious room-clearing ability. At the very least, it was a 180 from so much of what was out there at the time, and probably why it fascinated me so.
Now I’ve heard the grape juice/Kool Aid comments, but it never went there on my skin. On the contrary, my nose reveled in its (then) unusual plummy-berry opening that somehow smelled delicious and dangerous at the same time. The perfume world then was not so rife with fruit, so maybe it didn’t seem like such a bad thing, until the heavy-hitters began over-applying, of course. (In my defense, I don’t think I ever gassed anyone out with my Poison, for even back then I applied with a light hand.)
Recently, my craving for it reawakened a bit, so I pulled out my sample of vintage Poison parfum late one night when there was no one around to be offended. I dabbed sparingly, waited an anxious moment or two and then sniffed … ah! — still a knockout (no pun intended), still a remarkable scent after all these years. It had lost none of its appeal as a lush and beautiful femme fatale, though I must confess it did seem a little dated.
Notes for Poison (they vary slightly from site to site, but these seem to be the main players): plum, berries, coriander, tuberose, jasmine, cinnamon, cedar, sandalwood, incense, musk, vanilla and heliotrope
These days I prefer to get my tuberose from the gorgeous Carnal Flower and my occasional jasmine from Alien, but it’s fun to revisit this heady ‘80s diva from time to time.
So what big ’70s, ’80s or ’90s scent do you still enjoy, despite it getting a bad rap? Come on, ‘fess up, you know there’s gotta be something … Giorgio, anyone?