What’s it like to be a perfume blogger? Sometimes it’s like this.
Van Cleef & Arpels Cologne Noire. I wonder sometimes whether a house, having released a line with two or three outstanding scents (Gardenia Petale, Bois d’Iris, and Muguet Blanc, depending) if the rest are guaranteed to be duds, if only by comparison. Notes of ginger, cardamom, pepper, bergamot, bitter orange, mandarin, woody notes. I’m having trouble putting my finger on what’s wrong with Noire, but something is. The whole seems much less than its parts – disjointed and odd, with an aggressive raspiness and a pickled note that reminds me of the difficult Chanel Les Exclusifs – No. 18? I tried to imagine whether I’d like this any better if it was at Macy’s and the newest offering from Britney. And the answer, sadly, is no. Why can’t I find those magnificent Dior colognes anywhere? Why is life so unfair? Why, why?
VC&A Orchidee Vanille – notes of mandarin orange, litchi, bitter almond, dark chocolate, Bulgarian rose, violet, vanilla pod, cedar, balsamic tonka bean and white musk. Luca Turin in The Guide frequently describes scents as having a “candyfloss” note, and he often mentions a particular aromachemical component, which I’m too lazy to look up. Orchidee Vanille is almost unbearably powdery at the top, after which it smells exactly like those weird, small bags of pre-made cotton candy that my kids buy at the corner market. Not cotton candy + vanilla — just cotton candy. It’s an interesting, sweet chemical smell, but not one I want to wear. If I want to spray on an interesting, sweet chemical smell, I’ll take Gucci Rush, thanks.
Cartier L’Heure Brilliante – notes of lemon, flaxseed, gin notes and aldehydes. Musette – I’m trying, I’m trying!!! Honest to God! It’s very pretty, an herbaceous cologne smell on me. I have no objections. I just didn’t fall wildly in love as you did. Don’t shoot me.
Cartier L’Heure Folle – this one was recommended by Carmencanada when I was doing my berry scent review last week. Notes: redcurrant, pink peppercorn, grenadine, blueberry, blackcurrant, blackberry, violet, leafy notes, ivy, boxwood, shiso, aldehydes. This is not berry nice on me. There is an unfortunate canned-grapefruit note (sour/metallic) on my skin I can’t quite get past. If you’ve ever eaten tinned citrus you know what I’m talking about.
Cartier L’Heure Promise – notes of petitgrain, fresh herbs, iris, sandalwood and musk. I … oh. Oh. Oh my goodness. Maybe I’ll talk about this on Wednesday.
Okay, your turn – what have you tried recently, maybe something raved about on the boards/blogs, that’s been a FAIL? Go ahead, pick a fight with a fellow friend on the Posse!
Sources for all: private samples/decants.