Posse! Let’s talk about the heat! Surface of the Sun-level heat. I’m sitting here, in 96F temps. I have not yet melted in a puddle of goo. Of course, I’m not moving around much and I’m drinking copious amounts of cucumber ice water & hot peppermint tea.
And I’m conducting an experiment, wearing an unexpected Amouage in this astounding heat. Wanna hear about it? Okay!
Let’s start with the first time I learned of Amouage – this was … a decade ago? Maybe longer, back when Nordstrom still had the lovely pale blue Perfume Room at the Michigan Avenue store. Mohammed (my SA back then) told me all about the line but didn’t have testers… so.. but what I did remember was the concept of perfumes that would stand up to the astounding Middle East temperatures. I didn’t purchase anything because how on earth could I? I didn’t know what they smelled like!
But I kept that concept in the back of my brain.
Later, when I first sniffed Lyric (at Bergdorf) the cool-waxy rose seemed antithetical to that concept, so I disregarded it as a hot weather perfume and concentrated on the attars which, as we all know, bloom in extreme heat. I kept Lyric for cooler weather, where it performs just fine.
Except ‘just fine’ did Lyric a serious injustice.
So. It’s 96F. I decided to try Lyric in this heat (luckily we are not approaching the extreme heat of the Middle East, though I don’t know what the difference is – I mean, really? What is the difference between 96F and 106F? Hot is HOT! – anyhoo, I showered with the soap, greased-up with the body cream… and finished off with the perfume (in the blood-red bottle)
(WP ate my draft, so I’m going to try to wing the rest of this post. Bear with me)
Okay – Lyric is the glorious result of then-Creative Director Christopher Chong’s deep and abiding love of opera. Created with perfumer Daniel Maurel it is said to be a ‘spinto-lyric’ perfume, slightly darker than a lyric soprano – and that description fits Lyric perfectly. Imagine a gorgeous carpet or tapestry, with glorious pink and red roses, shot through with gold… all atop a lush, verdant background of deep greens and loamy blacks. That, in essence, is what I get from Lyric.
The heat? Welp! Lyric ate the heat’s LUNCH! I don’t know what I was thinking when I feared Lyric would get swallowed up in the triple digit feels. Heh. It’s almost as if it was just… waiting.. for the extreme heat (and humidity – don’t forget the humidity) to burst into full bloom. That waxy note (which is what I feared might get eaten) … it’s the frankincense (at least it is to my nose) and is transformed from intriguing crystals (which is what I get when I wear it in cooler weather) to a shimmering liquid, like lava that doesn’t burn, yet retains its luminosity. It doesn’t quite become the star (Rose is not having that, as you might imagine) but … I dunno… it’s this oddly compelling hot wax smell. The creme is simply astounding in the heat, mixing with my own skin chemistry to become almost a part of me – it doesn’t so much sit on the skin as it melds with it, retaining the essence of Lyric but evolving into a discrete entity. Unlike the perfume (edp) I suspect Lyric Body Creme smells completely different on individual skins. All gorgeous, though. And totally able to support the perfume. In fact, in extreme heat you don’t really need all that much of the perfume – a little dab’ll… well, you know ;-). It holds its own in any weather but there is no sliding around in this heat – it sticks the landing and you can smell it hours after application, just humming away.
This was the character I envisioned when I began this post – Lyric soprano (Inva Mula)Maiwenn Le Besco’s portrayal of the Diva Pavalaguna in ‘The Fifth Element’. That blue of her skin? That’s the frankincense – at least it is in my skittery little mind. Her voice is the soaring beauty of a hot Summer’s day. The blue? That’s the reminder of the inexorable slide into Winter – not. quite. there. Not yet. But. And as there is no light without darkness, both have a place and a beauty all their own – but that beauty is amplified exponentially when they are paired.
I would apologize to Lyric for my presumptions… but that diva doesn’t need my apologies. She knows precisely who She is – and she is glorious! Try her in 90F (or beyond) – she gets even more glorious, as she was always meant to do.
Surrender to Chance has both the edp and the extrait on offer. I’m going to order the extrait and see if I can explode the sun!