I had my eyes dilated today and I can´t see anything. Let´s test my touch typing skills! In keeping with my semi-blindness, here are blurry impressions of some of the fragrances I have sniffed recently, most of which did not leave me breathless.
The new Fendi Palazzo – the bottle is absolutely gorgeous, the best bottle I´ve seen in some time – a glass and gold rendering of a building (hence the name). I stuck the photo in here, but it really doesn’t do the bottle justice. The juice, as Patty reported, needs further evaluation in cooler weather. It´s a heady mélange of orange blossom, rose, tangerine, bergamot, lemon, pink pepper and jasmine, and my initial impression is that I like it better than Asja but not as much as my best friend Theorema. It starts off with a strong hit of bergamot, goes through a weird 5 minutes where it almost disappears, and then the fireworks start with the florals, and I´m thinking some excellent base notes (vetiver? patch?) It´s very rich and made an amusing fragrance accompaniment to Hairspray, in which, in case you are wondering, John Travolta in a fat suit doesn´t hold a candle to Divine as Edna Turnblad. The music´s pretty catchy, though.
Are you wondering where all the leather went in Hermes Kelly Caleche? You´re missing your leather, right? I´m missing mine. Do you know where it is? It´s on the arm of my 10-year-old Enigma. On me, Kelly Caleche is all about the roses, and no thanks. On her, it´s all about snuggling up in your gearhead boyfriend´s old leather motorcycle jacket, which is so … unfair.
I would love to tell you more about the Prada Iris Infusion, but I can´t get it to linger on my arm long enough to form much of an impression. One of the rare fragrances that will not stay, although fleeting impressions were favorable. I did try the lotion, which was lovely, and I´m not a lotion fan. I may actually get some of that lotion, which would be the first time I´ve ever bought one. A pale, dry, non-rooty iris.
Patricia de Nicolai Vanille Tonka – Louise sprinted back to their store in London and bought some after Judith commented that it smelled like incense (and what kind of stupid false advertising is that name?) On Louise, and on me for the first five minutes, it is a sheer, woody frankincense – a fascinating scent with some of the luminosity of CdG Palisander. Then on me it morphs rapidly into an atomic-level vanilla with an off note, like cake mix batter with artificial vanillin in it (don´t they make that stuff out of wood pulp?) God, it was awful. Eventually the vanilla died down again, but I won´t be repeating the experiment. What my skin does to vanilla is criminal; no wonder I hate it in any kind of quantity.
That stanky, teeny, expensive vial of oud juice that Louise bought from the flashy shop across from Selfridges – I´m sure she´ll fill in the rest of the info below. I dabbed it on and it smelled all poopy on me, like the great ape house at the zoo, or the circus without the cotton candy. Then it died down to that mulch-smell. After about an hour it was delish
Huh. Would it surprise you to hear that my computer keyboard smells like perfume? No?
I have to give SJP credit — when you smell her new Covet, you don’t think, meh, I’ve smelled that a million times before. I still can’t believe what she used as a top note. (Remember, folks — this is the throwaway, short-lived opening that’s supposed to reel the suckers in and get that credit card out before it dries down and they realize they don’t like it.) Now Smell This describes it in her review as “vaguely reminiscent of citronella,” and Bois de Jasmin (I don’t think I’m giving away any state secrets here) told me in an email that “I like it very much. It opens on a crisp, floral lavender with a bit of rose-geranium and dries down to a very soft, sensual musk.” To me, sprayed on the paper strip it smells like hell. Or, more precisely, like industrial carpet cleaner, or maybe oven cleaner. I jerked my head back like my dog did when he stuck his snoot in a nest of red ants. But NST and BdJ both give it the thumbs up and say I need to try it on my skin.
At the other end of the spectrum, the new Gwen Stefani L – holla back, gurrrl!! that juice is so unbelievably booooring. It could be any random bottle in Victoria´s Secret. Or BBW, even. There, Gwen, take that and stick it in your wide-leg sailor pants. Of all the people I expected to release something interesting, you were it. Okay, you and Prince. (Has anyone smelled the Prince one yet? I thought it came out in July?) The only thing interesting about it is the bottle, and that´s only interesting because it´s so stupid. The giant cap essentially fits over 4/5 of the bottle, leaving random customers in Nordstrom trying to figure out where the sprayer is. Cripes. It’ll probably be one of their bestsellers.
Pucci Vivara – I love Pucci. I have some faux Pucci gear, and two gen-u-wine vintage Pucci dresses, and when I work one of those with some big Dallas hair I feel like a million flashy smackers. Anyway, you look at that swirly purple and blue container and you think, cuuuuute!! Probably something fresh and sparkly, maybe citrus?! And then the SA at N-M sprays it on a card and hands it to you and NOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!! It was just … really, really strong. Not sweet. More like being hugged by someone wearing Animale. Or like eating a whole gorilla. I´m thinking something fierce along the lines of Aromatics Elixir, maybe? I made that embarrassing Mr. Yuck face to the SA that I had to apologize vigorously for, and I´m not smelling it again. You chypre sluts go do some reconnaissance and report back.
PS. Remember back in March when we all talked Patty out of getting that shar-pei bag? Well, the New York Times Sunday fashion spread was filled with a half-page of New Yorkers carrying those purses, which are now the thing. P — you’re ahead of the game.
PPS Scentzilla’s back with a post on Yatagan. I love her writing; we’ve missed you, hon.