More hot weather… We’ve had a rather strange summer. It’s sort of been, when it’s hot, it’s outrageous for here, and the rest of the time, it’s been cool/grey/wet/humid to the max/windy and gales. This past week was hot. Like, mad hot. A couple of days felt like the beach on the Atlantic Coast of New Hampshire, where my parents lived for some years: clear blue sky, very hot, salt-smelling air and very windy – dry, dry, dry. Other days were hot and very humid, with one day it feeling like the world was rotting — the air was so moist and some fun farmer had spread muck on the fields that morning.
I had seven more Cabanels to try from the sample kit and just couldn’t get my head round that number. So, I’ve done four this time round and the last three will come in a couple of weeks.
Onward (or On Y Va, as the people from the Les Frenchies youtube channel say at the beginning of their Paris videos).
Encore. Notes: carrot seed, peach, chai latte, iris, sandalwood, green vanilla, ambroxan and musk. This opens carrot-iris scratchy thing on me, with maybe a bit of chai sweetness. It’s very light – and I do mean very. It develops a toasty feel, with a bit of sandalwood and vanilla – a sort of cereal-y aspect. This is very short-lived on my chemistry – like a couple of hours max – and didn’t leave me wanting to try again for more longevity.
Très French. Notes: crunchy pear, peony, lily of the valley, sambac jasmine, “crystal clear notes” (yes, really), sandalwood, benzoin, vetiver Haiti and white musks. On very first burst of smell, I got peony. But that disappears in 10 seconds and becomes a not very pleasant pear (I’m not a pear lover anyway, in food or perfume). Lily of the valley emerges, which mediates the pear, and interestingly a salty note shows up (not listed) which works well with the LotV. This is soft and watery even as the jasmine emerges and I started to get some woods. The drydown has a strange ocean-pong smell. Like Encore, this is short-lived (though longer than Encore). Not something I will revisit.
Oha. Notes: bergamot, tea aroma, roses, jasmine, cardamom, tonka bean, patchouli and white musks. “… unique and timeless chypre”, per the website. Well, this is a really lovely chypre. It opens with a nice sharp citrus and tea accord which is interestingly dry. Then, the rose and jasmine emerge to deepen the fragrances. It still has a chypre-esque powderiness and a whisper of tea. This is a bit austere which is really attractive. The drydown is nicely woody but still with that powder accord. It’s very well done and quite long-lived on my skin – a text-book chypre. I don’t need this – I have chypres with more bells and whistles – but I appreciate it and think it’s well worth sampling.
Barkhane. Notes: bergamot, geranium, cumin, cistus, vetiver, myrrh, vanilla and oud. Per the site, “woody oriental”. It is that on me, but incredibly muted. It’s woody/herbal at the opening, with geranium but not much citrus at all. As it develops, I get some cumin and more geranium, with a whisper of sweetness (maybe myrrh) … and then the drydown was verrrry quiet, myrrh and vanilla. Given the notes list, I was taken aback by how soft this was. I was expecting a lot more oomph, presence and noise. It’s nice but extremely close to the skin. So, that would be a ‘no’.
The standout of these was clearly Oha.
So, three more to go.
Anyway, any of these likes for you? Curious? Already ordered the sample set and working your way through it? Looking forward to autumn or trying to hold on to summer?
Pics: Pexels and mine