I’m so ridiculous sometimes. This is supposed to be a review of Parle Moi de Parfum Orris Tattoo, which I’ve been sniffing off and on for a few weeks. Believe me, that Orris is really pretty. And that’s the problem, because each time I sit down and try to write a review, “it’s really pretty” seems to be the gist and the entirety of my thoughts. So, if you like iris, you should try it.
It’s been raining for days and we’re prepping for Hurricane Florence and everyone’s a little jittery. I went to the mall yesterday and beetled around for hours just to get out of the house. Perfume-wise there was the good (our Nordstrom now has a bunch of niche-y brands AND empty plastic atomizers for samples!) and the bad (Sephora’s squeezed their entire fragrance line to one back wall while they shift their focus more toward hair and skin care) and the indifferent, as exemplified by the rather forlorn-looking counters at Macy’s with their jumble of poorly laid out perfume brands and broken testers.
In Nordstrom I tried on the new Bobbi Brown Luxe Matte lippies – have you seen those? They did away with the modest Rich Lip Color line which I really liked, and these are the replacements. I have to say, they wear beautifully – matte and unsticky without being drying. Most of the shades in this initial lineup are YLBB shades, various nude-y pinks and plum-browns. One of the darker plums was ripe for the taking until I asked the price – which was $37. Huh. Lipstick has always been my non-guilty makeup pleasure, but now that lipstick prices have crept north of $30 for the nicer department store stuff, I’m less likely to impulse-buy. For that money I could get two perfectly nice Urban Decay comfort mattes at Sephora, I really like that formula. If I’m going to spend roughly $37 I’d rather have something glam like an Armani or YSL. I’m kicking myself because I forgot to try those Shiseido Modern Mattes, those look chic as hell and I think they’re $26, have you tried them?
While in Nordstrom I sampled the new-ish Narciso (in the short white bottle), Narciso Poudree (in the short, soft-pink bottle) and Narciso Fleur (in the tall pink bottle), to see if I could smell a difference. I have the first, now iconic 2006 version called Narciso Rodriguez for Her (tall black bottle, Christine Nagel and Francis Kurkdjian) which was a huge hit at the time. It smells like orange, amber and hairspray to me, and I’m varying levels of anosmic to all the musks. I wear it when I’m feeling mainstream and all I can say is, without fail, it garners compliments every time.
The dozen+ NRs following that 2006 bombshell are all essentially flankers — variations on a theme, the theme being whatever atomic musks are working their voodoo magic in the heart of NR, which gives it its extraordinary sillage. As I own the original, I have not been tempted by any of the flankers.
Until now. The short-white-bottle Narciso (2014, Aurelien Guichard) smells softer and rounder and sweetly milky, without the original NR’s raspy woods and weird amber-on-steroids. Narciso Poudree (2016, also Aurelien Guichard) smells even more restrained, with jasmine instead of gardenia, although the flowers are impressionistic at best; it’s really all about the seamless musky-floral heart. The Fleur Musc (Calice Becker, 2017) is a huge step backward into fruitchouli-ville; it loses its distinctive NR-ness and smells like every third scent at Sephora.
Anyway, I’m pretty sure I’m buying one or the other of those Aurelien Guichard Narcisos in the short square bottles, I think they’re delicious. After trying them all once again on Sunday, I was reasonably confident I was giving off nuclear levels of NR sillage, even though I couldn’t really smell it. I walked around in my own little NR universe and – as usual – folks loved it. The Chanel gal loved it. The Bobbi gal told me “you smell great!” The babe in Sephora said, “you smell amazing!” And so on.