Today we finish up March´s Mojo Madness with the third fragrance that caught my eye at Saks – the new Narciso Rodriguez For Her Eau de Parfum Intense, which is allegedly a limited edition at Saks and comes in a pink metallic bottle (shown left.)
I have an idea! Let´s hire Narciso a life coach and get him to give his fragrances real names! As it stands, you can´t tell them apart without a spreadsheet and photos – they´re all various combinations of the designer´s name with micro-clues like her, musc, and eau de parfum. It drives me nuts. Here´s a link to Helg´s exhaustive guide to the NR oeuvre on Perfume Shrine, which I like to think of as “what is the name of that Narciso? Wait … is that the pink one or the black one?” and for which she deserves some sort of award for patience.
Many of you know I mocked the entire NR line brutally for a couple of years as non-scented dreck until I went to LA with Patty and … whaddya know, fell in love with the plain old original NR EDT, in the black bottle, which I promptly bought and reviewed. Most of the rest of the line I still pretty much can´t smell, and I put on some Musc for Her (the oil) recently and stuck it under the nose of five perfumista buddies, and guess what? They couldn´t smell it either. The Narciso EDP in the pale pink bottle I can smell but it´s much more floral and I don´t like as much as the regular. There´s always other weird bottles of NR sitting around too (this time they have a purse size bottle that´s labeled hair scent.)
When the nice ladies at Saks, having already wowed me with Issey Miyake´s A Scent and Natori, whipped this one out, I gave it a go. Along with Natori, this is the other fragrance I may purchase to thank those long-suffering ladies over there for their patience.
The notes for the For Her Intense are musk, ylang-ylang, jasmine and orange blossom. In terms of character, it´s much more in the style of the original EDT from 2004 than the later, more floral EDP. By the way, somebody correct me but I think all of these were done by Francis Kurkdjian and Christine Nagel.
For comparison purposes, the original For Her EDT´s notes are (more or less) musk, orange blossom, osmanthus, amber, vanilla, woods, vetiver.
On my skin, the Intense is less focused on the orange blossom than the original EDT. While the fragrances resemble each other, Intense is more what I imagine Musc for Her would be like if I could actually smell anything. I put Intense on at Saks and pretty much forgot about it while I was all aquiver over Natori, etc. Then (you know how these things go…) I found myself hoovering various parts of my body later that day, trying to sort out where that delicious smell was coming from. It was the Intense.
Intense is about the warm, slightly toasty smell of another person you find attractive. It is the For Her EDT minus the part that smells recognizably like perfume. As such, Intense is the consummate wallpaper scent. It is very much in the background, unobtrusive, and if that holds no interest for you, well – there you go, move on, nothing to see here. However, if you share my admiration for the subtleties of these sorts of scents, Intense is probably the one I have enjoyed most in terms evoking the warmth of another human being. I have devised my own two mental categories for these scents – “skin” scents that I can´t smell unless I jam my nose into my wrist, and “aura” or “halo” scents that project a delicate – but detectable – perfumed presence around me. Intense is an aura scent. It´s very subtle but noticeably there for me, and as I have discovered with other scents of this type, if it works for you it really works. I can smell Intense for a full day after I´ve sprayed it, a delightful, comfortable presence around me.
***BTW – both Helg and an online shopping site refer to the fragrance as The Musk Collection and Limited Edition Musk; I can tell you that the outside of the bottle says Narciso Rodriguez for Her (at the top) and eau de parfum intense (at the bottom, which for some reason is not on the bottle pictured here). What is the precise, legal name of this scent? I have no idea. Blame Narciso.