Idole

I wrote this post before I left for the NYC Sniffapalooza, given the rigors of the schedule and my travel.  I´ll report in later, if Patty doesn´t cover it tomorrow. Instead I thought I´d cover one of my fragrant surprises.

Two weeks ago I grabbed one of my gazillions of atomizers sitting on the shelf in my closet, intending to douse myself in (reorchestrated) Femme, because it was one of those craptastic sleety days, and I was feeling like a hefty dose of Femme´s cumin contrariness would be the perfect antidote. I could tell immediately I´d grabbed the wrong thing. It smelled like Feminite du Bois, sort of, and you can make worse mistakes in grabbing the wrong bottle. Only that flummoxed me, because I thought my decant of FdeB was a much bigger bottle. While I stood there pondering, the scent changed again, and I picked the vial back up, filled with hope and wonder and yet still incredulous. Yep. My newfound love – Idole de Lubin!

Regular readers – don´t you wish you had a dollar for every time on this blog I have whined about how Idole never opened up properly for me? Never did its thing? How it was clear that the fragrance should suit me right down to the ground, from the notes (saffron, bitter orange, rum absolute, black cumin and bitter orange peel, doum palm, smoked ebony, sugar cane, leather, red sandalwood) to the nose (Olivia Giacobetti) to the bottle? And how all I ever got was 15 seconds of Feminite du Bois, followed by generic hazy woody vanillamber sweetness?

Well, knock me over with a feather. I wore it three days in a row. It was absolute perfection. It was every thing I ever wanted. I have absolutely no fricking idea. The Perfume Gods took pity on me? I got a new nose? What?

Idole starts off with a glorious burst of saffron (my love!) over orange, the rum note adding a jaunty richness to the opening rather than an overwhelming drink-me liquor feel. The cumin adds warmth without coming on strong – I couldn´t pick it out unless I was looking for it. The drydown is smoky and resinous – I don´t know what doum palm, smoked ebony and sugar cane smell like, but sign me up. The whole experience has that Giacobetti seamlessness and lightness I appreciate. The drydown gets darker and richer, vaguely in the direction of Chaos, but never really dark. I don´t get a ton of leather in the drydown, more woods, and I´m fine with that. My only nitpicky complaint is the blast of alcohol in the opening; do yourself a favor and give it a minute or two to fade before you bury your nose in there. It´s less opaque and woody than FdB, easier to wear than Chaos, lighter while not being insipid.

For three excellent alternate reviews, check Bois de Jasmin, Now Smell This, and Perfume-Smellin´ Things.

Idole bottle: Luckyscent.com

  • zara says:

    to me, lubin is fantastic, it feels like drinking brown cuban rum sitting inside a wooden wardrobe made of some dark precious woods. i received a sample a week ago, together with montale black aoud and was smitten by both. in fact, they both seemed somehow ‘related’ to me – woody and boozy (montale has that champagne whiff whilst idole is definitely rum), very mellow. i like the bottle too, somehow 🙂 boozy stuff-good stuff 😀

  • Cait says:

    Good news about Idole. I had myself a time inveighing about the marketing approach mostly as a fun exercise. Gimme a break, I went to vocational school instead of grad school so occasionally my perfume blog gets to be the space where I make conceptual mountain out of mole hill. Idole, like many Giacobettis, is just damn delicious to smell. It reminds me of the rum shampoo she did for IUNX. Ah! I still miss that now. I use Guerlain Vanille Spiritueuse nowadays when I want some booze. Although booze is hard to pull off in vocational setting.
    Still jealous about missing you all at the Sniffa. Next time!
    :d

    • March says:

      Aaaargh, she did a RUM SHAMPOO?!?!? That must have been great. I missed that one. I would have loved to visit IUNX, I saw photos once. Even if they all smelled like … well, like water. Or most of them. Very expensive water. I have a little bottle of L’Ether I like to dab on. Hmmm, wonder if I spelled that right.

      I hope to meet you too.

  • bownnie says:

    I hopefully that you aware on this . I am not any more take more hurt by any one I deserve to be happy person.And I try beliebed for what you told.

  • minette says:

    while “thawked” is an interesting word, the one i was looking for is “thwacked.”

  • minette says:

    i believes ya, but the magical transformation has yet to happen for me. to me, idole is rough and clumsy. was expecting something more suave, for some reason. it thawked me over the head instead.

  • bownnie says:

    If you meant to hurt anyone you should stop no one try to sell anything here .If you do not want me leave me alone.I shy..

    • Musette says:

      Bownnie –

      Please don’t be offended. No one here is making fun of you – in fact, we are actually making fun of US! (well me, anyway). A lot of Americans don’t speak other languages and if we don’t know English is not your first language we tend to get confused. I really was intrigued by the “rich Zurich lover” – we sometimes get into these fantasty riffs here and that one sounded like one I would like!
      I think I speak for everyone here when I say you are most welcome! Just be patient if we (or I should speak only for myself here) don’t always completely understand your posts. I am impressed with your understanding the language enough to post on this board. I certainly couldn’t post on a Thai board if my life depended on [email protected]};-

    • Veronica says:

      Bowwnie,
      I’m really sorry, it was completely insensitive and stupid of me to joke like that! Not everybody has as thick a skin as I do. I applogize, really!

  • tmp00 says:

    Sometimes I think that almost anything should be given about six tries before you give up..

    Except PoTL :d

  • Maria says:

    Idole is unimpressive on me. I’ll give it another try sometime because that worked for you.

    So March, I hope you and Patty are going to blog about the Sniffa. Any photos?

    I have a suggestion for a future post. After folks have gotten around to reading more of the Turin-Sanchez guide, maybe we could have a free-for-all responder review day where we get to share our impressions? I have many thoughts about the book.

    • Louise says:

      You were missed at the Sniffa, dear Maria @};-

    • March says:

      Maria, I think a re-visit and re-discussion would be a blast, let’s do that in a few days. Not sure about the photos, but I’ll do a post on Weds.

      And yes, we DID miss you!

      I am not sure that Idole could actually land on your skin. 😉

  • Veronica says:

    Vetiver was great too. Somebody needs to tell then to put some “fixatives” in those fumes, though. It’s too painful to have such beauty to evaporate in twenty minites!!

  • alba says:

    I’m so glad you’ve come to love Idole. When I first tried it, the only thing that put me off a bit was… the bottle. Too ethnic or whatever for my taste. But the scent…I can’t get enough of it. I feel it’s good for any occasion (except for extreme hot weather, that is). It’s much sunnier than FdB (which I also love) and perfect for those cloudy days when you need a bit of cheering up (without overdoing it). Now I’m waiting for my sample of “Vetiver”: I know I’ll love it, too. (Lucky you, 4 days sniffing in NY!)

    • March says:

      Trying NOT to talk about the bottle. I have not seen it in person, but I think it is beautiful. Some people though find it offensive. Or creepy. I know when it came out there was some lively discussion online about the message of the bottle/fragrance, and now I’m shutting up because I don’t want to do it again.

      Yes, the problem with FdB (and Chaos) is sometimes I put it on and regret it. Idole seems much easier to cope with. I LOVED the Lubin Vetiver, and I’m not even a vetiver chick. I look forward to hearing your thoughts.

  • Divalano says:

    Idole doesn’t like me, although from the notes it should. All that saffron & woods & smoke & leather, you know? All I got was ORANGE & SWEEEEET. And a little bit of the earthier stuff peaking out but not nearly enough. I’ll keep in mind that it surprised you & try again some day.

    And wow, you guys, what fun meeting everyone! March, I didn’t even remember to wear the tiara by Blumercury, bummer! I had a blast tho. Should I tell you I played hookey today out of sheer exhaustion but we’ve still been toying w a trip to CB’s if he’s open??

    • March says:

      That makes me feel oddly better, hearing you were so tired. I thought I was just a huge weenie or something. :”> I have no idea how the Karens do it.

      I know, our tiaras! I was too busy getting lit on champagne and trying to stay upright. And if you see this comment, I’m going to try to upload some pics, I have you and someone, can I put it up? thx

      PS Not sure if CB is open Mon. Easy by one of the Brooklyn trains. I need to stop calling them by their colors (as we do in DC), I say “the red line” and New Yorkers look puzzled.

      • Divalano says:

        Yeah, CB was closed. Next time. Yes, I was tired. I am tired. I am about to dump my gift bags out on the couch & roll around in samples. Not literally.

        The sign of a real NYer is that we say the letter/number of the train, or say Broadway line, or the Lex Ave line. Colors are sort of like … subway training wheels 😉

        Sure, post the picture. I don’t look dopey, do I??

        • March says:

          Oh, go ahead. Roll around in your samples. I think it sounds like fun.

          I’ve gotten darned good at the trains, except when I screw up and take an express. I wound up taking an impromptu tour of Queens that way Thurs. night… :”>

        • March says:

          PS I’m thinking of not doing the pics. I’m not sure I made it clear to everyone why I was taking them… and I’m sensitive to people not liking a particular pic of themselves.

  • Judith says:

    Hey! Maybe this will happen to me! Idole has always been weak on me (and I tried and tried). One never knows, do one??:d

    SO great to finally meet you!:x Got back at midnight last night and running now. . . . .

    • March says:

      Ack, I know, there are other things I SHOULD be doing right this second….

      it was so very much fun hanging out with you. 😡

  • bownnie says:

    African carvier very interesting but you have to work out a little bit.:x

    • March says:

      I think the cap is real wood, I’m not sure. I’ve never seen a bottle in person, I am assuming the head just pops off.

        • March says:

          Yeah, but it was fun typing it.

          • bownnie says:

            Idole starts off with a glorious burst of saffron (your love!)I copy your word said” My newfound loveoIdole de Lubin!
            over orange, the rum note adding a jaunty richness to the opening rather than an overwhelming drink-me liquor feel. The cumin adds warmth without coming on strong – I couldn’t pick it out unless I was looking for it. The drydown is smoky and resinous – I don’t know what doum palm, smoked ebony and sugar cane smell like, but sign me up”. but warning that this own by the rich financial company in zuric and get very srong support from her lover ,never hurt her even a bit ,So you will be the next lucky one of this African star.and I wish you all the best.

          • Louise says:

            hmmm…(:|

          • Veronica says:

            HUH?!!

          • March says:

            We’re getting a lot of international commenters recently, which I think is cool. This person is (I believe) Thai, and his/her English is way better than my Thai. We spent a month there and I still couldn’t say hello correctly. It’s a tonal language, very difficult to learn, I couldn’t even hear the nuance. :)>-

          • Musette says:

            Ditto on the language – (I stuggled through Japanese and still stink at it and the rest of them are just shockin’ embarrassing to listen to me mangle) – but I do want to know about the rich lover in Zurich (can I have one?):x

          • March says:

            Yeah!!! Where’s MY rich lover in Zurich?!?! [-(

          • bownnie says:

            Idol and I we are good friend and she is married person with the guy in zurich may be not very rich and she told me she have enough strong support from him a guy who even touch her.and I did told her for your poetry she is not interestd.and I do not invole in this I feel very bad..

          • March says:

            Don’t feel bad, it’s okay.

          • Veronica says:

            Oh, sorry, I thought it was someone trying to sell you something you didn’t ask for:d

          • bownnie says:

            Do you know I am not trying to sell something to someone here and Ifeel loose face.

          • March says:

            I know you are not trying to sell something.

  • Louise says:

    I think Lee may be on to something.

    Idole has thus far been rum, all rum on me, and like a dear rummie friend of mine…sweet but irritating. Post-sniffa…no more nose, no more words. What fun we had

    :p

    • Louise says:

      No punctuation left, either !!! 🙂

    • March says:

      Were you tired? Honestly. I was EXHAUSTED. I went back to the room and fell asleep, although at that pt, having pretty much entirely lost my voice, I couldn’t chat anyway. People kept looking at me yesterday the way they do when they’re worried you have an advanced case of the cooties. It seems a little better this a.m.

      Wasn’t it great hanging out? I met some lovely people.

      • Louise says:

        I was completely pooped, came back early. No voice, and a toxic overdose of cheesecake! I had such a great time though!

        • Divalano says:

          Heard all about the cheesecake, jealous I missed the desert-ing!

        • March says:

          Hey, I didn’t hear about the cheesecake! Tell me about the cheesecake!

          I also heard the cupcakes at Tak were amazing, sorry I missed those. 🙁

          • Louise says:

            All sweets, all weekend. The cheesecake was just the I’m-in NY-gonna-get-sick-on-cheesecake stuff-good and gooey. The cupcakes were a marvel-only ate 3! Oh, my jeans are tight today 😮

          • March says:

            I’m wearing sweats. :d I also ate some cheesecake on the bus home, of the dry and tangy variety, which is my favorite.

    • Carol Sasich says:

      punctuation is over-rated…
      sniffa on the other hand was OVER THE TOP and not overrated.
      nice to put a face to your words March. Enjoyed meeting you !
      :)>-~o)

      • March says:

        It was great meeting you too! I wish I’d had more of my voice by the time we got to BlueMercury, but it was gone. I sniffed so much stuff. Did you buy anything? (None of my business.)

        • Carol Sasich says:

          I did buy , and of course it is your business !!
          I raced to the Guerlain counter after breakfast and bought a bottle of Cuir Beluga. I like it better than SDV. Ok I said it.
          I bought an adorable roll on of The Pink Room No 1 from Sarah Barton-King at Tak.
          Christen and I both fell in love at first sniff with Villoresi Alamut , fan-freaking-tastic juice if I may say gorgeous floral under incense…so we split a bottle.
          Someone at the breakfast wanted to split a bottle of Bois d’Armenie ( are you out there I want to split one…)
          Did you buy anything ?
          Can we start a “did you buy anything” page March ?

          • March says:

            Hey, sounds like a great addition to your collection! I’m posting on the sniffa tomorrow, why don’t you ask whether anyone wants a split? And I know there’s a sidebar over there for splits, I think…

      • Louise says:

        And the coffee beans were sooo helpful at clearing the “palate”!:d

  • Francesca says:

    Can’t sleep. Reading Perfume Posse. This makes me want to wear Idole today. As discussed, I am crazy for this fragrance.

    • March says:

      I wore it to bed last night, getting my mind set for this morning. (Yes, and this after 4 days sniffing in NYC. Proving that I may in fact be deranged.) It’s just cool enough I might wear it again this morning.

  • Lee says:

    I think bownnie might be onto something.

    My journey with Idole was the other way round…:-?

    Are you all sniffa’d out?:x

    • March says:

      I couldn’t believe how exhausting it was. Seriously, I’m embarrassed. And parts of it are really loud (150 people in a room) so the drag was by Saturday night I’d strained my voice, completely gone. It’s still mostly missing. It was wonderful meeting everyone from the blog, though, that was the best part.

  • bownnie says:

    Do you think is this the unique fragrace ? may be Idole will find so many in Hollywood star which may be you cannot wear this parfume drydown with smoky and resinous .How you got was 15 seconds of Feminite du Bois, followed by generic hazy woody vanillamber sweetness? and fast change to another smell ?May be baccari(CLEAR) or dry drum(BLACK OR DARK BROWN) without honesty.
    :”>

    • March says:

      Hey, are you in Chiang Mai? At Sinativa? That’s where your link goes. If you are, let’s trade places! 🙂

      • Musette says:

        I was thinking that very thing, March! Perhaps there’s space for two. I’m sure bownnie would like to spend some time amongst a few cows and fields of corn stubble!:d/

        Can’t wait to hear all about your (as in all of you) Sniffa trippa!

        • March says:

          It was sooooooooooooo great. I mean, no surprise. Everything was perfect — decent weather too. I know I owe you an email, I need to wade through all the stuff in my inbox and email you back.

  • Debbie says:

    That is so strange about how differently you experienced it! Maybe it just needed to age? ;o)

    This sounds like a fantastic fragrance! I’ll add it onto my must-try list. What with reading the T&S book, that list is awfully long now.

    • March says:

      I know, and now I’m skeered. Because you’re joking, but what if I get a bottle and I can never get the same effect? I’ll have to let the bottle age … :-<

      • Debbie says:

        Well, that does happen with Montale’s. Not that they need to age, but you never know if a scent that you tried will be the same with the next bottle. :o( I hate it, especially considering that they make some terrific scents. Just accept variation? The German in me demands more quality control. ;o)

        • March says:

          I’ve heard that about the Montales! That would drive me crazy. In fact, those minor variations in scent make me sad. Especially noticeable on d/c’d scents. My bottles of Barbara Bui smell a little different. And one of my Chaos bottles is gamier. I spent some $$$ for a bottle of Jules and I was so bummed, the top smelled completely different than my decant, but it dried down right.

          • Musette says:

            That happened to me with Eau de Merveilles, which was startling! Not a bad change…but I wasn’t expecting a change at all! Guess it works much like champagne or nail polish:-?

          • March says:

            Did your bottle change over time? Or did you have a difference between bottles? And speaking of champagne, maybe pounding two glasses in five minutes on Saturday night contributed to my fatigue. I was thirsty. :d

          • Musette says:

            Blasphemer! Champagne NEVER contributes to fatigue! Champagne is the elixir of Life!!!<:-p On the Eau d M my bottle changed over time. I've had that happen in the past but it was due to improper storage. This time it was just a subtle shift - the kind where you're not sure if it's the bottle or you?

          • March says:

            Well, it IS the elixir of life, but I’m used to, um, a higher price point than Andre (does that sound snotty? sorry) /:) and some food might not have been a bad idea. Although eventually I horked down a bunch of cheese. :@)

            The subtle shift. I wonder if that’s what leads us to falling in and out of love with fragrances.

          • Musette says:

            Holy crap! They gave you Andre? And you DRANK it?:o March, you’re lucky to be alive. C’mon over here and I’ll give you some Billecart rose (non-vintage, sorry). You’ll feel much, much better!

            I, too, wonder about that ‘subtle shift” (not so subtle this am, when I was throwing large metal objects around like they were rolls of toilet paper:-\” I’ve noticed that lots of stuff that smelled very constant now has odd swoops and swerves all over the charts!

            Wonder how this plays out…we’ll see….:-?

          • March says:

            We’re getting squeezed.

            It might not have been Andre, but it was darn close. I thought, I haven’t had that since jr. high school… :”>

  • Veronica says:

    I LOVE Idole,just wish the darn thing lasted more then 20 minites on me.
    I understand you don’t have longevity issues with anything, March.:X