Comme des Garcons 888 — March’s Turn

Here´s an abbreviated post from me today (bet you thought you´d never see the day, huh?)We´re still in the thick of holiday family festivities and the kids are underfoot, which is messing with my powers of concentration.

First, welcome to our new look!Which you all saw on Monday before I did because I couldn’t figure out how to clear my cache! It´s kind of finished, but we´re still tweaking, and as I said in the comments on Monday, please please please let us know if you´re having any issues navigating the site, any suggestions for improvement, anything broken, etc.I am not sure whether Contact Us is working properly, and we´ve had some other glitches.So.Be patient, but please don´t assume we´re aware of a problem – go ahead and complain! Also, I’m learning to navigate a system with new bells and whistles, so bear with me while I learn the format.

Today´s review is of Comme des Garcons 888, which I have been enjoying for the past several days.”Comme des Garcons 888 was released for one week inLondon and won’t be available again until March of 2008.Perfumer Antoine Lie created 888, which was intended to capture the smell of gold. They settled on Safraline, a molecular derivative of saffron, created by Givaudan. Other notes are pepperwood, curcuma, coriander, geranium and amber.”

I am fond of the CdG line in general, and I admire the audacity of some of their scents even if/when I find them bordering on unwearable.I look to CdG for interesting ideas, and I can think of favorites from most of their series, including Incense, Red, Leaves and Synthetic.There´s been lively debate on the blogs recently regarding How We Feel About CdG Getting into The Luxe Game.Separate from the price, though, Luxe Champaca and (even more so) Patchouli certainly have their fans.Play, another recent offering, I am pretending does not exist.It´s like a spoof of a boring mainstream scent – and congrats, guys, you hit that ho-hum note right on the nose.

So I was a little worried about 888, with its LE rigmarole and eau-de-gold blather. Here’s what I got: 888 opens with a huge blast of pepper and coriander, but there´s also a strong, old-fashioned classic cologne note.The effect together is effervescent and really, really appealing.Right away the tone is set: okay, we´re going to have fun here.If anything, I´d have named this one Play.I don´t get much metal, for those of you avoiding 888 because of the m-word.”Curcuma” suggests either ginger or turmeric, and I´m going with the latter – along with the amber and saffron that begins to dominate as the cologne fades, there´s a mustard-like note.

888 is a wearable scent, while at the same time retaining its quirky, arid strangeness.The drydown is dry and bitter, like bancha tea leaves, with only a touch of amber.My favorite part (which doesn´t work very well in public) is sniffing it up very close on my skin, when I get the geranium too.

Verdict?It is not hitting me over the head with its astonishing virtuosity, and I didn´t Have A Moment (like I did, for example, with Palisander) where I sniffed it once and then reached into my wallet in a fugue state for my credit card.Having said that, I´m enjoying it, I don’t have five other things that it reminds me of, and 888 deserves its place in the CdG lineup.

glitter image:

  • denise l. says:

    I like the new look! One thing- I doubt no one has brought this up yet, but the Perfume 201 link in the upper left says “Perfume 102.” Happy holidays, everyone!

    • March says:

      That is hilarious. That is *exactly* the kind of thing we would never notice. Or I’d notice it in 9 months and be embarrassed.

      I kind of like 102, though, now that I think about it. Advanced, but not too.

  • tmp00 says:

    reads like I can wait for it…

  • Patty says:

    Nope, nothing groundbreaking here, but I really did wind up liking it. I have a feeling, once spring/summer hit, it’s going to be in more frequent rotation. Easy to wear weird, without being too damn weird that it distracts me.

    I thought the metallic was pretty gentle too. Silver Factory has a much harsher metal zing to it, though it gets all warmed up with incense, so it doesn’t feel as harsh and jolting as it actually is. 🙂

    so I like 888 a lot, and it lasted on me for at least a day, which is pretty unusual for a CdG. The Patchouli is damn nice.

    • March says:

      I just went back and reread your review. I think we were pretty much in agreement on this one. It’s not too weird, but not boring either. Fun scent, I like it.

      Have to try that Patch.:d/

  • Divalano says:

    Holidays still? Mine have been so beyond strange this year that I can’t even comment. I’m not even sure I know what day it is anymore. And that is NOT from ingesting intoxicants for anyone who’s about to go there, lol.

    March, you’ve lit a fire under me. I’ve been wondering where to go sniff CdG in NYC & so far come up blank. I will persevere.

    • March says:

      Well, I know they have at least some of them at Barneys (that’s where I bought Palisander). That’s probably your best bet. Of course they don’t have *any* in boring old D.C. You know where there’s a great selection of fragrance? Chicago. What is up with that? If it weren’t for the weather … sigh. I love chicago.

      BTW things can be pretty weird over here, but that’s just us!;) I think you should share printable details.

      I like the holidays. I don’t have bad family baggage, but I feel the pain of many friends who do.

      • Divalano says:

        I’ll try Barney’s, thanks.

        Sorry to say the details of my holiday weirdness are very unholiday-ish. Sick. A lot of stress & sick. My stepmom, some close friends, too. I seem to be in a long dark three months of the soul, as a recently heartbroken friend said last night.

        On the other hand, I have no negative family holiday baggage & we’ve all been sticking close. And I have friends & a partner & 2 cats who love me (at least I think the cats do. maybe it’s just my opposable thumbs), a warm home, and the ability to find pleasure & light (perfume! good food! movies!) no matter how dark anyone’s soul happens to be of the moment. Thanks for being part of that 🙂

    • tmp00 says:

      Hey- they don’t have them in the Chelsea shop? on 22nd?

      Weirdly, we have some of them at the MoCA store on Grand Avenue. You might try the MoMA store?

  • Style Spy says:

    Waaaaaant to smell this — I’m a huge fan of CdGs in general, and this sounds spicy & delicious.

    Love the new look of the site!

    • March says:

      Thanks for the compliments. I think 888 straddles the line nicely between odd and wearable. Some of the Synths and the Sweet (and certainly the Guerillas) I found totally unwearable. Incense was wonderful. The tea/leaves one is great too. And I can’t believe I didn’t try the original CdG until a few months ago, what a knockout!

  • Malena says:

    i ordered a sample of 888 from TPC the day before christmas.
    most of the CDG scents i only like in theory, but wouldn´t wear them, though i like strange, weird & ervything, but they just don´t feel like “me”.
    their luxe patchouli is nicely done, but there are other patchouli scens i just enjoy more.
    a sample of champaca is hidding somewhere, too, but i still haven´t gotten around to test it. perhaps i´m a bit worried i won´t like it & that keeps me from sampling…
    i´m still on the hunt for a good champaca scent – i like the one OJ does (especially the rice note), but it doesn´t work always on me, sometimes it smells like nothing. i still couldn´t figure out when this happens 😕 normally it depends on the weather, but with that scent this isn´t the case.
    i want 888 to be a big blast of galbanum, though i´m almost sure it will smell completely different from that. but dry & bitter doesn´t sound bad, either.
    well, i´m really looking forward to test it!

    • March says:

      I liked the CdG Champaca very much, although not as much as the OJ. And this is why I love the blog, getting different people’s take on things — I am shocked that the OJ disappears on you! It is so very strong on me. Clearly I am not the benchmark for longevity or sillage.;)

      Definitely not the blast of galbanum.

  • Louise says:

    Have big fun with the continuing holiday fun, Marchele. Just have a blast, and don’t squish any kids.

    I will smell this one, just because it’s a CdG-but this isn’t rising to the top of the must-sniffs.

    OK, one site detail. I am not crazy about the ads between the text and comments. I don’t mind looking at them on the sides of the blog, but my sense of PP continuity is disrupted by the placement there. Petty, I guess. Thanks.

    • March says:

      We have the new train set from Santa set up on our dining room table! And we got a Wii and Mom is having SO MUCH FUN.

      I’ll collect any comments/suggestions/complaints and forward them to The Management. Which (you are correct) is Patty!:)

      • Louise says:

        You got a WII!!! I would watch out carefully for that console, if I were y’all-MANY of us stalked MANY stores in search of that wonder…=:)

        • March says:

          Shall I confess?

          I was at Montgomery Mall at the Gamestop at 10 sharp the morning we had that big ice storm, to pick up Sims for Enigma’s DS Lite. I thought it would be the perfect time to shop (nice and empty) but in fact many of the stores were still closed b/c the employees were delayed in arriving. I ran into a woman I knew, standing there, and hung out chatting (I could see the employees inside, opening up.) So I waited 20 mins and … noticed this huge line had formed behind us! So I asked my friend what the deal was, and she said rumor was they’d gotten some Wii’s in.

          They finally opened at 11. They had six. I was Number 3. So I bought one. I figured it was A Sign From God, she’s been begging for two years, and I’d told her tough luck kid!

  • Marina says:

    I didn’t get quirky 🙁 I got generic. And this is a CDG?! :((

    • March says:

      Well, this is why I am interested in more feedback after other people have smelled it. I wonder whether I’m bringing out some notes most people won’t get? Will everyone think it’s dullsville?

  • chayaruchama says:

    Between Lee’s Van Cleef comment, and Nina with Patch Luxe, I’m going to have to pee…

    Ah figures you saved me a batch of money, girl.
    But maybe not…
    What do you think ?
    Will I swoon, or puke ?

    And THAT’S why we pays you the BIG bucks, baby-
    To sniff for us.

    • March says:

      I don’t think you’d swoon OR puke.

      I think you’d go, meh. IMHO you like a harder core scent (not that you don’t have your soft side.) While I think this is interesting, I’m not begging Patty for an extra bottle, ya know? You have a gazillion other choices, as I happen to know.;)

  • Nina says:

    I didn’t get ‘gold’ from this one either, March. I did get a flash of metal, but mainly I got ‘shrill’. It calmed down to something I found quite wearable, but I don’t think I’d be flattening old ladies in my stampede for a bottle. Patchouli Luxe, though…old ladies everywhere should keep out of my way…

    • March says:

      Okay, okay, okay — I yield!!! Clearly I need to try the Patchouli. I’ve held off. But there are some other things on the Court calling to me, might as well fold a sample of that in there.;)

  • Elle says:

    I’m torn. Part of me is relieved and delighted to hear they have produced something original again, but the c*ri*nder is not thrilling me. Maybe by its release in March I can have consulted an olfactory hypnotherapist to help me get over my current problems w/ that unfortunate c note.

    • March says:

      Well, at least it doesn’t have c*l*ry! Hey, how do you feel about c*min? Or ch*c*late? /:)

      Coriander can seriously get on my nerves. As I said up there to Anne, the fragrance is light enough that it’s not being smacked upside the head with the box of spices.

  • Anne says:

    Glad your Holiday Party is still going strong. I miss having little ones underfoot. Starting to actually allow the idea of grandchildren to enter my brain.

    Great review. I don’t know about a bitter drydown. After all the twists and turns of a wild ride perfume I kinda like something that’s comfortable to settle into on the drydown. Amber and saffron I can do but “mustard-like”…I don’t know. That must be the “funky fanged fish swimming around underneath” that Patty described. Appreciate your different take on this one while I am waiting for my sample to arrive. :)>-

    • March says:

      Well … I was trying to be honest with the bitter, but it’s a nice, peppery bitter, not an old-vase-water bitter. To clarify.;) And it’s transparent enough … like an Hermessence? I should have put that in the review. That sort of weight. So it’s closer to the skin and you’re not having the life sucked out of you.

      Let me know what you think!

  • Lee says:

    The dry and bitter puts me off, given that tumbleweed seems to appear on my torso if a dry scent comes close to me. And then Lee van Cleef appears on the horizon. Whistling.

  • MattS says:

    I hope you’re surviving the family festivities; all of mine are over and done with and with the help of some borrowed Valium, I survived! So it’s back to work and business as usual. Blah! I just had a vial of the 888 in my shopping cart at TPC on Christmas Eve but took it out at the last minute and threw in the Luxe Patchouli. I figured, hell, it’s a holiday, why not go all out? I do want to smell this, but since it’s not available until March, I may try to sniff some other things in the meantime. How is the longevity on you? Sometimes some CdGs don’t hang around on me quite as long as I’d like. I did order at last a sample of Mitsouko, in your honor. Enjoy your day.

    • March says:

      Hey, how *is* that Luxe Patch? I still haven’t smelled it; I hear it’s UFB. And not just for patch lovers. So I guess I need to give it a chance, huh?

      I love the family stuff. I grew up with a really small family, so this is a fun change for me. I wouldn’t want the chaos all year, but for the holidays it’s wonderful.

  • Maria says:

    I’m looking forward to smelling 888. I won a sample. Yay!

    Of course, March, if you want to know what gold smells like, you can just smell yourself. 😡

    I do have an objection to one of the new features. “Perfume is our poison.” I don’t think it fits in with the fun attitude of the site. It’s your passion, but your poison? Hmm. I don’t know. If you were all big Christian Dior fans, I’d see it. I do like the poison bottle though.

    • March says:

      Maria — I hope you like the fragrance; wonder if it will last on you? It’s not super long-lasting.

      Re the slogan — can I blame Patty?:d We did have some discussion about how people might feel about that. I didn’t even think of Dior! Do you find it, I dunno, creepy? Or just not fitting in?

      BTW you can laugh but it *never* occurred to me that our previous Dirty Girls look was a problem for people at work, who were worried they might be busted for looking at p0rn…:-w

      • Maria says:

        It never occurred to you people might have to scroll down fast because of possible misinterpretation of site content from the graphics??!!! =)) Imagine those of us who work at educational institutions.

        The slogan doesn’t seem creepy, just not fitting with the spirit of the site , which is “Give me more, more, more.” :d

        • March says:

          Nope, never crossed my mind. Which possibly says more about me than I care to think about it. In my defense I’ll say it’s been some time since I worked in an office, and my last office environment was so testosterone-soaked I think porn and sports were all they looked at on the computers, if they weren’t working. 😉

          I think “Give me more, more, more” should be our slogan!

          • GGS says:

            I have to tell you something else funny re: your web site. It is the only perfume blog that gets blocked by my company laptop security software! (It is some language on the site, though, not the “dirty girls” graphics, that has caused it to be flagged as “possible porn”. I can only access the internet on my business laptop through my company VPN network, which allows them to block access to certain sites.) Never fear, I can view Perfume Posse from my home desktop, so I am still a regular reader, except every few months when I’m travelling out of town. And yes, I must say the site graphics gave my husband pause the 1st time he saw your home page… he thought it looked a little racy as well! I think the new look is great, so congrat’s on the change.