Wednesday, 30 May 2012

Madonna Truth or Dare

Madonna's Truth or Dare perfume has hit my fair town at last, and I felt I had to have a sniff. If truth be told, Truth or Dare is rather good as far as celebrity fragrances are concerned. I'm not an expert in this 'genre' but while I liked Sarah Jessica Parker's Lovely, I think Madonna's perfume is a bit more daring and unusual, by these standards.

Truth or Dare was apparently '15 or 16 years in the making'. If I'm being honest, Truth or Dare is a nicely-done mainstream tuberose fragrance, but fairly light on the tuberose and I struggle to understand why it would take the better part of two decades to conceive of this idea, but perhaps I'm being unfair. There is something about it that reminds me a little of Honore des Pres' Vamp a NY, but only superficially. It too smells a little fleshy, a little bit like coconut. If anything, Truth or Dare has a rubbery note in it, to my nose at least, which if I understand correctly is a facet of tuberose.

I actually think Truth or Dare is a very decent perfume. It isn't groundbreaking, particularly original or daring, but having said that, it doesn't smell like other celebrity scents out there and thank the Lord it isn't a fruity floral.

Well done Madonna.

Sunday, 27 May 2012

Weekend musings

This is the best weekend we have had in England so far this year, at least weather-wise. Warm, sunny weather prevailed, after weeks of rain and cool weather, so it was with great joy that we spent most of the time outdoors.

On Saturday Hannah, my older daughter, was invited to a friend's birthday party, held at an indoor play centre, of all places. Luckily they had an outdoor play area, with seating, which is where we spent most of the time. Afterwards we went back to the host's house (we know the family well) for a BBQ with a few other families, and spent a lovely evening enjoying good food, hospitality and wine. We only got home at 10.30, which is very late for the kids and fortunately they were so so tired that they slept until 9am the next day, which is unheard of!

Today the weather was even better, if that could be possible. We spent the morning in the park, playing, had a lunch at the park cafe and then some ice cream. The kids splashed about in the paddling pool at home in the afternoon, followed by another BBQ. It's the first time I've got it out of the shed this year and it is looking very rusty and uncared for. Fortunately the rust and grease from 2011 was burnt off and 'sterilised' and the meal itself was very nice.

I didn't wear much perfume this weekend. In fact, I only wore perfume once, yesterday afternoon, being ELDO's Fat Electrician, which is a vetiver-focused fragrance. I find that in the heat, especially when playing around with children and so forth, perfume disappears from my skin faster than the government with my taxes.

On a general theme, I thought I would quickly list some of the books and music I've been enjoying recently:

  The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo - Stieg Larsson
  The Hunger Games - Suzanne Collins (creepy, but compelling)
  Fab, an intimate life of Paul McCartney - Howard Sounes

  Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers - pretty much everything
  Bon Iver - Bon Iver
  George Harrison - Everything Must Pass
  PJ Harvey - Let England Shake
  Rolling Stones - almost everything, but particularly Sticky Fingers and Let it Bleed

So, that's it, my exciting weekend!

Friday, 25 May 2012

Hermes Voyage D'Hermes Parfum

In a post of mine in March, here, I mentioned that Hermes had released a parfum version of Voyage. Well, I tried the parfum version for the first time today and I have to say that in my opinion the original perfume wins hands down. It isn't that the parfum is bad, but to my mind it deadens the notes that made the original a curious, yet compelling pastiche of the Hermes aesthetic. The original was fresher, lighter and more vibrant - usually not the sort of things that appeal to me, being a fan generally of darker, stronger compositions, but it worked.

The parfum smells sweeter and more leathery to me, although various fragrance sites state that the parfum version brings rose and amber to the original. I think it is the amber that makes it sweeter and heavier. Perhaps I should try it when the weather is cooler, as it may appeal to me more. As I said above, it isn't a bad perfume by any means, but I prefer the original.

Wednesday, 23 May 2012

Scent of the day - ELDO Rien

Whew, today was a scorcher here in the United Kingdom, which, reading between the lines, means that we got into the low twenties (celsius). On this muddy isle, a day in the twenties means shirts off, skimpiest skirts on, sandals and general bizarre behaviour. Not for nothing the old saying 'only mad dogs and Englishmen enjoy the midday sun'. Or something like that!

Today I revisited Rien, a perfume that is rapidly becoming my favourite ELDO fragrance. I've only worn Rien in cooler weather, but on a warmer day, woah! It becomes one of the skankiest, seedy, sultry and most kinky perfumes I've encountered. It's essentially a floral, spicy leather fragrance, containing a melange of hard-hitting ingredients including incense, patchouli, styrax, amber, mousse de chene, labdanum, iris, rose, leather, cumin, black pepper and aldehydes. 

I am fairly certain that Rien is a sillage monster, which is why I only dabbed a tiny bit on each wrist. It was still very prominent and full of character, and bloomed in the warm weather. But oh, what a wonderful perfume in my opinion. It is complex, sensuous and with the aldehydes even has a hint of vintage about it. I find Rien a very sexual and sexy fragrance. It just smells like passion and lust to me.

This comes highly recommended.

Tuesday, 22 May 2012

L'Artisan Dzing

Today I wore L'Artisan's iconic Dzing, a perfume of genius if ever there was one, in my humble opinion. I can't believe that I wrote about Dzing more than two years ago, here. It feels like just the other day. 

Reading my review on 13 May 2010, I don't think much has changed. Dzing still smells and wears pretty much like that. It still amazes me how Dzing manages to convey the smells of the circus. Who needs Demeter or CB I Hate Perfume? One thing that strikes me now is how musky Dzing actually is. It has loads of musk in it, which with the leather creates a distinctly animalic accord, not sexually animalic to my mind, but of animals in an enclosure. Amazing.

If I'm not mistaken, I read a while ago that L'Artisan had or were thinking of discontinuing Dzing. I don't know if that is  true, but if it is, that is a real shame because Dzing is one of the most innovative and compelling perfumes I know.

Sunday, 20 May 2012

Weekend - back to basics

This weekend I made a point of wearing two perfumes that I actually own. To call this post 'back to basics' is possibly an insult to Hermes Terre D'Hermes and Gucci Pour Homme, as neither is basic or simple really. They are both, to my mind, examples of what can actually be achieved in the mainstream perfume market. What makes me rage inside, sometimes, is why more of these sorts of perfumes aren't released. I think what I mean by back to basics, is returning to something I usually take for granted, and shouldn't.

I've owned a bottle of Terre D'Hermes for about four years now. I wrote about Terre a couple of years ago and mentioned that I seldom wear it these days due to a negative association I have with the fragrance. It isn't Terre's fault - I wore it on a day when I was very stressed, going for an important job interview and every time I've worn it since, it reminds me of that stress and tension. As time passes, those association are fading and I was able to wear it this weekend with some pleasure, and realised all over again what a great fragrance it is.

Why, you may ask. What makes Terre so good? I can think of a number of reasons, but one simple reason is that it smells like no other perfume on the market. As simple as that. It doesn't smell generic, it doesn't smell like it has been done before. For me, that is enough to state that it is one of the few modern mainstream men's classics out there. In simple terms, it smells of orange, mineral vetiver and bleached woods, but it goes together so well.

What about Gucci Pour Homme? Well, sadly it is now discontinued. The one Gucci men's fragrance that I actually like, and I bought the very last bottle at Hoopers, one of our local department stores. I'm sure it can still be had at certain fragrance discounters, but I imagine it will become quite scarce over time. Gucci Pour Homme is essentially a calm pepper, woods and incense perfume, with some sweetness in the dry down from the amber accord, but I would call it a very woody smelling perfume. While I wear it happily in the day, whenever I spray it on, it feels like it should be worn out for the evening. It just smells sophisticated and complex enough for a special occasion. 

I know both of these fragrances are for men, but irrespective of gender, I would seriously recommend you try both if you haven't before. Terre is easy to find, and a best seller for Hermes, but you may need to search a little harder for Gucci Pour Homme.

Thursday, 17 May 2012

Hermes Rocabar

I was at my local Fenwicks department store today, who are celebrating their beauty week. I saw a few weeks ago that they are now stocking Rocabar, which I haven't personally come across before, but they didn't have a tester until recently. I've tried Equipage numerous times but Rocabar has eluded me (I'm still on the lookout for Bel Ami, but I am not convinced I will find it here in the UK - if anyone from the UK is reading this, a heads-up would be appreciated).

Anyway, today I tried Rocabar for the first time and I have to say that I really enjoy it. Released in 1998, the notes according to Basenotes are juniper berry, cedar needles, lavender, nutmeg, cinnamon, cyprus, atlas cedar, virginia cedar, balsam and vanilla. Reading these notes, one would be led to believe that Rocabar smells intensely woody and piney, with spices and an oriental twist in the base. I don't personally think that it wears as woody and piney on skin as I thought it would. And I'm grateful for that. I am not a massive fan of very piney fragrances and Rocabar's coniferous accords are well balanced with warm spices and a slight sweetness-and-resin from the balsam and vanilla. 

Many Basenotes reviews complain that Rocabar is too sweet and cloying. I don't know where that comes from, because on my skin it is not very sweet at all, as the woods and spice tone down most of this and it is very well balanced. In fact, I think it is the use of vanilla and balsam in the base that makes Rocabar so enjoyable, particularly as this stops the piney accords from dominating. I have to admit that Rocabar does smell a tiny bit dated - it smells more like a very well done 1980's perfume than something released only two years from the new century, yet is not forceful and hairy-chested. It smells smooth and classy, no surprise coming from Hermes, who do understated luxury very well indeed. I think Rocabar is fantastic, and I'm so glad that I've finally tried it. Highly recommended wearing.

I should point out that the Rocabar I tried is no longer in the bottle pictured top left. It is now in the slimline Hermes bottle common to the main range, for example the 'Un Jardin' perfumes.

Image credit -

Wednesday, 16 May 2012

Antonio Banderas - Antonio

I received a bottle of Antonio Banderas Antonio as a gift a few years ago. During that time, I have worn it a little, but to be honest, I can't say that I find it very good. It isn't terrible, and to be fair, doesn't smell like a hundred other humdrum masculine perfumes out there, but it translates as quite synthetic on my skin, in the sense of smelling of chemicals. 

Every time I wear it, I do a search on the internet to try find reviews of Antonio. In the four years of trying, I still haven't found anything written about it, other than brief, generic blurb on discount perfume websites and on Banderas' own website. The perfume is under license to Puig, no surprise considering Banderas is Spanish. 

Fragrantica categorises the perfume as a woody floral musk, listing notes of musk, pepper, fir balsam, cashmere wood and citrus and apparently won the 2007 Fifi award for Fragrance of the Year Men's Popular appeal! 

On my skin it does smell very citrusy and green. Later on, I detect some very synthetic, fuzzy musk and a sweet note that originally made me think of this as a tobacco fragrance. 

If anyone has tried Antonio, please let me know. I'd love to know what people think of it. If you haven't tried it, I'm more than happy to give you a generous sample of it.

Tuesday, 15 May 2012

Serge Lutens Arabie

Could this be one of the good Uncle's most polarising fragrances (let's not even talk about Miel de Bois)? Arabie was the first Lutens perfume I ever tried, way back in the 'misty times' of 2007. It set the tone for what I initially thought applied to all the Lutens perfumes - that oft-talked about syrupy, stewed fruit accord. Arabie has it in spades, but over time, as I've got to know and love the Lutens line, I realise that in actual fact not that many Lutens really have that accord. At least, I don't think so.

To this day, I still don't know if I like Arabie. It is strong, forceful, long-lasting and very distinctive. I get the feeling that it is likely to wear someone rather than the other way round. Yet, in a strange way, I do like it. I think once the initial stewed fruit and spicy blast calms (which admittedly is a while) it becomes a very complex and nuanced perfume. Through all the spice and fruit is essentially what I perceive as a fruity leather fragrance, although this accord is not mentioned and I could be wrong. I suppose the intense spiciness of the fragrance just makes me think of leather. I think for most people, this could be a love-it-or-hate-it fragrance.

Like some of Lutens intense and challenging perfumes, I don't think I could wear Arabie frequently, but I do like trying it on occasion. One thing is for sure - it takes no prisoners.

Monday, 14 May 2012

Serge Lutens Chergui

Oh dear, I wasn't expecting this. I used to like Chergui. A lot. I haven't worn it for some time now, but trying it again today, it came across cloying, over-sweet and just a bit nauseating. It's always been a strong perfume on me, like most Lutens, which aren't known for their light, fleeting sheerness. I think it may have had something to do with the fact that today was quite overcast, humid and rainy at times, which just seemed to amplify all that Chergui-ness, like a suffocating and scratchy blanket.

For some reason, every time I smelled Chergui today, I wished I had sprayed on Costamor's Tabacca instead, which on my skin manages to seem dry yet sweet at the same time, and thus very well balanced.

Sunday, 13 May 2012

Scent of the weekend - 10 Corso Como

This weekend I wore 10 Corso Como, consecutive days. It isn't often that I do this, but it is testament to how good a fragrance 10CC really is. 

I had a look back over my blog, and see that I've mentioned 10CC in passing on at least six occasions, perhaps more, yet have never written about it in any depth.

Named after the address of a Milanese fashion house, 10CC used to be the rage on the perfume boards, but it seems to be mentioned far less often these days, unless I'm just not reading the relevant posts. I think this is a shame, as 10CC is a very good perfume indeed. Luckyscent lists it as being more feminine than masculine, but to my nose, this perfume is as genderless as you can find. The notes include sandalwood, frankincense, musk, rose, geranium, vetiver and what is described as rare Malay oud wood oil. Now, considering all I have read recently (and knew, mostly) about how rare it actually is to find any perfume containing genuine oud, I am not sure how rare and genuine the Malay oud oil is in 10CC. Not that it really matters, mind you. I have to be honest and state that I don't detect an oud accord in 10CC, but that isn't to say it's not there.

In a nutshell, 10CC smells like a very smooth, sophisticated blend of sandalwood and incense. I know the notes list geranium, rose and musk, but for most of the life of this perfume, it plays out as very woody, with very little floralness about it. When I first used to wear 10CC, I found that it smelled very quiet, a skin scent. It's strange how olfactory perceptions change over time (bearing in mind my recent post on Guerlain's SDV) because today 10CC smells quite prominent on my skin. I would never call it a loud fragrance though - it is very smooth and classy. 

I love 10CC because it contains both a lovely sandalwood and an incense accord, two of my favourite notes. I find that sandalwood and frankincense go very well together anyway, considering the long use of sandalwood in incense and they combine to create a very calming and peaceful perfume.

If you haven't tried 10CC before, I would strongly recommend trying to find a sample. I read a few months ago that some people think the formulation has changed and that it doesn't smell the same or as good anymore. I couldn't vouch for that, as I've only ever tried one source of it, but to me it smells fantastic as it is.

Image credit -

Friday, 11 May 2012

SOTD - Parfumerie Generale Hyperessence Matale

There is something about Hyeressence Matale that has me intrigued. I have written about it fairly recently, here, and I still stand by my opinion that it is a fairly straightforward fragrance, but smells amazing. It is green and citrusy to start, even mossy, and feels perfect for spring. While that is nice, it is the phase when the smoky tea accord emerges that most seduces me. The tea accord smells a bit like incense to me, which makes me think of this fragrance, ultimately, as quite meditative and calming.

Hyperessence Matale is a great tonic for the end of the week. Bring on the weekend!

Thursday, 10 May 2012

Scent of the day - Guerlain Spiritueuse Double Vanille

Is it just my skin, or is Spiritueuse Double Vanille frustratingly shy? Perhaps I have developed the nasty olfactory habit of wanting all my perfumes to be strong, but SDV is positively (negatively?) a wilting flower on me. I love the ingredients, I love the idea, and I love the smell, when I can smell it.

It takes some serious close-up wrist-sniffing to detect it and when I do - yum, yum, yummy! Certainly a skin scent on me, unless my sample was diluted. I find that a lot of the modern Guerlain perfumes I've tried are like this on me, including Cuir Beluga and Bois d'Armenie. The frustrating thing is they all smell so good, but so subtle. Too subtle in my opinion.

Has anyone else out there had a similar experience with SDV and friends?

Wednesday, 9 May 2012

Amouage Library Collection Opus VI

As I have mentioned a couple of times recently on this blog, Amouage's latest in the Library Collection, Opus VI, has really struck a chord with me, making it by far my favourite of the Opus range and certainly one of the best recent releases from Amouage, in my opinion. It is no secret here that I am a fan of Amouage, so I should state that my opinion is possibly biased, but in any event, a perfume house that has so many perfumes that appeal to me must be something special. I don't know why the other Opus perfumes haven't appealed much to me. I think part of the issue is that none of them has that 'something', or the wow factor. In fact, thinking back on Opus I, II, III and IV (I haven't tried V enough to form a fair opinion) I struggle to distinguish between them and if someone had to ask me right now to describe each one, I couldn't.

Opus VI, on the other hand, struck an immediate chord with me the moment I first sprayed it on a card, then on skin. The notes include sichuan pepper, frankincense, St Thomas bay, periploca, cypriol, patchouli, ambranum, Z11, sandalwood and cistus. I think what immediately strikes me about the notes is Amouage's openness about the ingredients. No fancy-schmancy bullshit about all-natural ingredients gathered personally from remote reaches of the world. Cypriol is derived from a grass-with-rhizomes, as I understand it and has a slightly animalic, spicy-musky accord, while Z11 is a new (or fairly new?) synthetic compound that has an amber profile, as does ambranum. The effect is a perfume that to me smells woody, resinous, slightly smoky/leathery and, of course, amber-like. Amouage state that Z11 gives Opus VI a bone-dry feel, and while I can appreciate that, Opus VI does not smell that dry to me - there is some 'sweetness' from the cistus and sandalwood, but it does smell gloriously woody. 

The opening has that that trademark Amouage frankincense accord and throughout the duration of wear, Opus VI to me has hints of, or a nod to Epic, both the men's and women's versions, without the oud or tea notes. 

What I find quite fascinating about Opus VI is that it smells like a totally new take on the amber genre of perfume. It does smell like an amber perfume, yet it feels totally modern and unlike any other amber perfume I have encountered. Opus VI is well-balanced too. Like all Amouage perfumes, it has stellar lasting power, but is not that forceful. At the end of the day, it smells amazing.

If you haven't tried Opus VI yet, I would highly recommend getting your hands on a sample.

Image credit -

Tuesday, 8 May 2012

Scent of the day - Prada Amber Pour Homme

I wore Prada's Amber Pour Homme today. I've tried it a few times before, but I have to admit that despite the enticing notes, Prada's perfumes haven't done very much for me. There is a note that all their perfumes seem to have, mainly in the dry down, that just doesn't appeal to me.

Anyway, Amber Pour Homme has notes of mandarin, bergamot, cardamom, patchouli, tonka, vanilla, saffron, suede, vetiver and orange blossom. In theory, this combination ought to have me in raptures, as these are all notes that I love. In practice, the fragrance dries down to an over-sweet amber that promises a lot, but just doesn't deliver.

In fairness, I don't think it is a poor fragrance, but I wish that it was a bit drier, with a touch of smoke and more resinous. When I wore it, I had a steaming cup of coffee next to me and I suddenly thought how nice this fragrance could be if Prada perhaps added a shot of a coffee note to the original. It certainly smelled very good with the coffee aroma close by!

In closing, I should perhaps state that I do prefer Amber Pour Homme to the Infusion d'Iris, which is even sweeter and more cloying on my skin.

Sunday, 6 May 2012

Sunday Star - Orange Star

Apparently the earth is extremely close to the moon at present and it looks up to 30% bigger than usual. The 'supermoon' as it is being called, is actually a full moon known as a perigree full moon and is about 356,400 kilometers from earth, rather than the usual 384,000 kilometers and causes higher than usual tides.

That's all good and well, but is only exciting if one can actually see it, which here in the UK, with our present weather, is remote, considering the grey, drizzly skies! Anyway, moons aside, today was more of a star day for me, as I wore Andy Tauer's Orange Star, which while I found perfectly easy to wear on a hot summer day, works equally well on a cold and wet day. In fact, it was just the tonic to lift the mood, with its peppy orange accord. As some of you who have tried this will know, Orange Star is no ordinary citrus scent, with the zesty and sweet mandarine and clementine balanced by a rich and vibrant ambergris, tonka bean and vanilla accord. It is a curious, yet brilliant fragrance, in my opinion and nothing else smells quite like it. 

The strange thing is that the smell of Orange Star actually reminds me of a scent from my childhood, which I can't quite place. It makes me think of summer days and swimming pools for some reason, without any obvious connection, but what I do know is that it makes me feel happy. Very happy.

Saturday, 5 May 2012

A Serge Saturday

Following on from Borneo 1834 on Friday, today I thought I'd remain in a Lutens mood and wear Amber Sultan by Serge Lutens.

I don't have much to say about Ambre Sultan that I haven't said before. It is still my favourite amber perfume, what I call my gold standard. Having said that, the recent Opus VI by Amouage is quickly moving up the rankings! What I especially like about Ambre Sultan is that it is not a sweet and powdery amber, my least favourite. Rather, it is herbal and dry, and complex too - continually evolving. The herby opening can be quite weedy at times, in the literal sense of the smell of weeds, but I love Lutens openings with a twist, so this doesn't put me off.

I don't find Ambre Sultan a particularly cozy and comforting amber. I find that it is easy to wear in all seasons, without ever becoming cloying, which some of the sweeter ambers are prone to doing in warmer weather, in my opinion.

Another great perfume by Serge Lutens.

Friday, 4 May 2012

Scent of the day - Serge Lutens Borneo 1834

Today was chilly and drizzly in England, or at least where I am. I don't know what it is about weather and perfume, but for some reason cooler, damp days often make me want to wear patchouli perfumes. I wouldn't say that patchouli is necessarily a comforting, cozy note. In fact, patchouli can often be quite a challenging note. However, Borneo 1834 from Serge Lutens manages to make patchouli cozy in my opinion, without sacrificing any of the 'integrity' of the characteristic patchouli accords that patch fans know and love.

I wrote about Borneo 1834 a long time ago, in April 2010, see my review here. In many ways, my opinion of the fragrance hasn't changed. It still starts with those cocoa and camphor notes, then sweetens ever so slightly, then slowly seeps into a gorgeous, rich and smooth woody patchouli dry down, smelling plush and polished. I emphasise the words plush and polished, because to me Borneo does evoke the smell, feel and even 'vision', albeit olfactorily, of a room filled with old, polished furniture or panels. And perhaps that is where the comfort of this scent arises - to me being in an old room filled with beautiful, polished furniture, is comforting.

I've worn Borneo a lot over the last two years, and every time I wear it, I am struck by what a brilliant perfume it is. It really is. To my mind it is one of the masterpieces in the Lutens line and one of the best patchouli fragrances out there. Even if you aren't a massive fan of patchouli, I would recommend that one at least tries it. You may be pleasantly surprised.

Thursday, 3 May 2012

Attar Bazaar Mysore Sandalwood

I received a sample of Attar Bazaar's Mysore Sandalwood oil courtesy of Cymbaline, who I met recently in London.

I had never heard of Attar Bazaar and was interested to find out after visiting their website that they are based in Santa Fe, New Mexico. They have a host of interesting oils, ranging from rose  to sandalwood to musk, and a lot in between.

The Mysore Sandalwood oil, according to their website, is a very high-grade oil and judging both by what I smelled on skin and the reviews I have read, this is very true. Like most oils, the sandalwood takes some time to warm up on skin, but when it does, the most gorgeously smooth sandalwood aroma wafts up. The oil is quite linear, and does not evolve that much, but I wasn't expecting that anyway - I was interesting in smelling unadulterated sandalwood - and what one gets is a very contemplative, woody accord, with just a touch of pepperiness and perhaps a little smoke. 

After smelling this one, I am now really keen to try a few others from Attar Bazaar. Do any of you have any experience of this company and its products, and if so, what do you think?

Wednesday, 2 May 2012

Diptyque Boulevard 34 Saint Germain

I only recently encountered Diptyque's Boulevard 34 Saint Germain, which is stocked at my local Space NK store. I vaguely remember seeing some reviews of this fragrance about a year ago, then it all went quiet. 

The '34' range (I can't be bothered to write out the full name again) was released to celebrate Diptyque's 50th birthday and is meant to 'recreate' the smell of the Diptyque shop, in the sense of a nod to each of the signature styles of perfume over the years, including fig leaf, blackcurrant, rose pepper, citrus, geranium, tuberose, woods and eucalyptus. Pictured top left, the bottle is really gorgeous, in my opinion, and has a stunning black bakelite magnetic lid. Very chic and tasteful. Also very unusual is the atomiser tube, which is covered with a sheath that is meant to resemble Diptyque's candle wicks.

So what about the fragrance itself? After wearing 34 today, I had a look at some of the reviews in the blogosphere and was surprised at the luke warm response to it. Two in particular felt that it was a flat and unimaginative perfume that had too much of everything 'Diyptyque' and nothing to make it stand out as innovative. People felt this was disappointing considering this perfume is meant to be a celebration of the Diptyque heritage. While I can see some sense in these opinions, I must confess that I think 34 is a really good fragrance. True, it isn't groundbreaking, but it does what it says on the tin, which is to present a perfume typical of the chic and sophisticated Diptyque style, with a nod to the heritage of the house. 

The most notable characteristic of 34 to me is how spicy it is. Having only recently tried Viktor and Rolf's Spicebomb, I am struck by how similar they are in the first half of development, except that 34 is a bit more refined and a touch more spicy. The spices smell like cardamom mainly. I really like this spicy phase, but it is the dry down that is gorgeous in my opinion. It ends up as a smooth, woody fragrance, almost leathery at times, with a hint of smoke and spice, perhaps even a smidgen of tobacco. If that isn't good, then I don't know what is. 

Tuesday, 1 May 2012

Happy May Day

Happy May Day to everybody. If you're wearing Lily of the Valley today, then I hope you are enjoying it.

I'm not, because I don't have any Lily of the Valley perfumes in my possession, funnily enough, or not.

May Day started grey, dank and miserable here in the UK, but thankfully it brightened up considerably to the extent that by evening time, it was glorious. Now I am hoping (praying?) for a good summer.

In keeping with May Day traditions (not), I wore two great perfumes by Serge Lutens, Rose de Nuit and Santal de Mysore.


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