Monday, 12 April 2010

Voyage d'Hermes by Hermes

Today I'm doing a quick review of the new Hermes fragrance, released within the last month. The reason I say quick, is that I think all the other blog reviews have covered it quite sufficiently. However, the reason I am mentioning it at all is that firstly I love the bottle design and secondly, I do admire Hermes perfumes.

I love Hermes' understated, chic design and concept. It is high-end luxury that never shouts but does show its class throughout. Voyage is no exception. Designed by Jean Claude Elena, it will appeal to his many fans and those who like their perfume understated yet substantial at the same time.

When I read all the reviews, one common thread that emerged was that the fragrance is literally like all J C Elena's work for Hermes, Cartier and Bulgari packaged in one scent. I was slightly bemused and sceptical about this, but having now sampled the fragrance twice, once on a scent strip and the other time on my wrist, I too can vouch for this assessment.

It is appealing and if you are at all familiar with Elena's style and particularly his previous work for Hermes, you will recognise his signature all the way, from top to bottom. The opening is tart citrus, mainly grapefruit, then in comes some rose (the most pleasurable phase of the scent for me), then cedar and a hint of cumin, a la Cartier Declaration. Into the drydown cedar (iso-e super mainly) dominates, in the manner of Terre D'Hermes. All the way though, there are little cameos from a number of the Hermes range and this makes the fragrance quite fascinating to me.

Having said that, I think if you already own a number of Elena creations, I cannot see why you would wish to own Voyage. It is a little too much like deja vu. However, if you are new to Hermes' creations and to J C Elena, then I think this would be a great introduction to their recent style and scent philosophy and you could do a lot worse.

One final comment on the bottle: gorgeous as it is, I wish Hermes had made the metal swivel-thing cover with a matt finish. The metal is glossy and shiny and the tester I looked at was covered in fingerprints, which kind of reduces the impact in my opinion, but nevertheless, an inspired design!

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