Sunday, September 27, 2015

Review: Prada Infusion d'Iris EDP

A fragrance lover has a sort of intense relationship with their collection; we protect them, baby them, dote on them, devote whole blogs to them. We're only one tiny fraction below being so obsessed with our aromatic elixirs that one of us could be featured on TLC's 'My Strange Addiction,' which has showcased a man who was actually sexually involved with his car, and a woman who was married to a carnival ride. Yeah, we're not quite that weird. There's more involved with being a fragrance fanatic than meets the eye (god, I bet that's what all people say that are crazed over something), but that's for another day.

When my husband and I moved from Ohio to New York, our belongings would have to sit in a sweltering, metal storage container for a month; but not my ambrosial liquids. I carefully packed them into a large tote, and treated them as I would a small child. We toted that dead-weight tote in and out of cars, up and down stairs, into and out of elevators, and through mazes of busy sidewalks. I regret nothing. They rested comfortably in air conditioning, safe from spoilage. I worried enough about the state of my lipstick in that hot storage box that I would have had a psychiatric cataclysm had my perfumes accompanied them.

And there comes a moment in every fragrance collectors life that they must face the horrifying, hypothetical scenario of having to grab only one (or a few) perfumes in a dire situation. At least once a month, someone in one of the many fragrance groups proposes some form of fictional destruction in which you would be forced to rescue a solo scent. "If there were a zombie apocolypse and you were one of the chosen to be flown to a safe island, leaving your loved ones and cats behind, and you could only bring one perfume, which would it be?" Because clearly, if a virus were turning humans into flesh-eating monsters, perfume would be a top priority.

In any case, if I were ever faced with an angry, blazing fire, with only enough time to save one 'fume, Infusion d'Iris would be it. I mean, I'd hesitate there for a minute, amongst the heavy, black smoke. I'd shed a tear. Briefly, I would consider succumbing to certain demise with my beloved perfumes, whose combined volume could probably overflow a tub. But, I'd come to my senses. I'd snatch up my Infusion d'Iris and dash out the door. I could sniff it outside the building as I watch a fiery force destroy the entire physical representation of my life. Welp, that got morbid. Sorry guys.


mandarin, galbanum, orange, orange blossom, iris, cedar, vetiver, incense, & benzoin

Cool. Clean. Urbane. Refined. 

Infusion d'Iris strikes a perfect balance between classy and modern. It is effortless and unpretentious; like an expensive French soap. A bright, well-rounded citrus accord paves the way for sweet, powdery iris, and a subtly green galbanum. A soft-spoken woodsy-incense provides a skillful, complimentary base for the clean and inoffensive iris to adhere to. And sweet benzoin creeps through the cracks of the wooden base, keeping its predecessors from being too sterile and phlegmatic. Infusion d'Iris is at once cheerful and grey. Engaging, yet aloof. It's really no surprise that this ranks at the top of my list, because afterall, a contradictory fragrance is my favorite kind of fragrance. Well. That and the fact that it has a powdery persona, and I hope that by now you know how emphatic I am about powdery scents.

I imagine an unblemished, sterile, bathhouse. All white in structure, with grey linens and rugs. A single slender, speckless vase displays a bountiful bouquet of perfectly manicured iris. Tall, open windows drown the room in daylight and a countryside breeze. The window frames create an illusion of living paintings; an exhibit of flowery meadows and oatmeal colored grass, as far as the eye can see. I could decompress here, douse myself in Infusion d'Iris, and then march out into a messy, polluted world, smelling of sweetly powdered, soapy iris. Impenetrable by sidewalks full of stank garbage, train carts infiltrated by the smell of human excrements and body odor, and breezes acting as an automobile for cigarette smoke. 

Infusion d'Iris EDP can be purchased for a little as $40 for a 30ml bottle, the nose behind this fragrance is the one and only Daniela Roche Andrier

Longevity: 3/5
Projection: 3/5

Saturday, September 26, 2015

Review: Bois 1920 Sushi Imperiale

Maybe an emphatic sushi-lover or a deep-sea mermaid would seek out a raw fish smellin' perfume? Probably not. Because ew. But if so, they'd be sorely disappointed by Sushi Imperiale. It smells nothing like uncooked sea food, coupled with rice, and wrapped with seaweed. Thankfully. In fact, if the smell of sushi had an exact opposite, it'd probably be what Sushi Imperiale actually smells like; hot, cinnamon-spiced apple cider, with a backdrop of mens cologne. Why is it called Sushi Imperiale? Your guess is as good as mine. I do like their weird representation of mystery, though. Keepin' me on my toes!


bergamot, mandarin orange, lemon, pepper, nutmeg, jasmine, rose, star anise, cinnamon, sandalwood, vetiver, patchouli, tonka bean, & madagascar vanilla

When Sushi Imperiale is first spritzed, it has a heavy, cinnamon-ed licorice aroma; it's kinda brash. Shortly after, the spicy anise unifies with a little bowl of varied, fleshy citrus, seasoned with a pinch of nutmeg and pepper. From here, it begins to morph into something that resembles hot, murky apple cider. It does take a teensy bit of time for the pleasantries of this juice to take fruition; there's a lot going on here, and it begins with a bang. But as the top sizzles out, it softens and meets a subdued vanillic tonka. It grows into a warm, sweet, a little spicy (and sorta fresh) men's cologne personality; this is the part of Sushi Imperiale that makes me melt into a figurative pile of goo.

The florals listed are virtually imperceptible to me. As for the patchouli, vetiver, and sandalwood, there is a slight dust-laden, wooded earthiness that can be noticed with a deep inhale directly from the skin; it's not recognizable via wafts, but acts as an anchor and provides additional depth and stability. Sushi Imperiale is wrapping up in a rusty-red and orange wool blanket, while sipping apple cider in a ginkgo-littered park. I perceive this fragrance as one that I'd reach for strictly in the fall months. It develops beautifully in crisp air, and catching whiffs of it in a cool breeze is intoxicating. Looking for a scent to wear for Thanksgiving to make dealing with your crazy aunt a little more tolerable? This is it. Reminder: bring rum to slip into your apple cider.

Sushi Imperiale retails at $140-205, the nose behind this fragrance is Enzo Galardi

Longevity: 2/5
Projection: 3/5

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Review: Laboratory Perfumes Gorse

Laboratory Perfumes was founded in London in 2011, the brand currently consists of four scents; Gorse, Samphire, Amber, & Tonka. The fragrances are available in 100ml EDT bottles and 250ml candles. The perfumes are designed to evolve over the course of wear as determined by the wearers personal chemistry. All four scents are marketed as genderless, made with natural oils, and inspired by flowers, herbs, and aromatic botanicals from around the world. I had a pleasant correspondence with Dorothy, and was surprised with an unbelievably generous package. I genuinely enjoyed three of the four Laboratory Perfumes fragrances (I wasn't into Tonka, but could understand how others would be). Today, before we completely lose sight of summer, I'm sneaking in a review of Gorse.


citrus, coconut, cardamom

Straight away, a strong blast of crisp, clean, citrus-drenched coconut grabs my attention. Soon after, the citric coconut is sprinkled with a hushed cardamom, giving Gorse just enough spice to keep it interesting. Here is where it rests; each of the notes exist peacefully with one another. It is rather linear, and like all four of the Laboratory Perfumes fragrances, Gorse is straightforward, easy to wear, and flawlessly blended. As you could imagine, this perfume is perfect for the summertime. You can drench yourself in it and never feel overdone.  

If I had to compare Gorse to another fragrance, it would undoubtedly be Creed's Virgin Island Water. It mainly represents my favorite part of VIW; the crisp, limey-coconut. Gorse isn't as heavily limed as VIW is, but they share a notable similarity. Overall, Gorse is an uplifting, refreshing, and clean fragrance. I don't think I can fairly proclaim it to be my favorite of the four Laboratory Perfumes scents, Samphire is beautiful; Gorse is a close second.

Image from:

Gorse retails at $95 for a 100ml bottle, you can learn more about LP here

Longevity: 2/5
Projection: 2/5

DISCLOSURE: product provided by Laboratory Perfumes, opinions are my own

Monday, September 21, 2015

Sample Mail: ROADS

Completely impressed with ROADS presentation and aesthetic. I can't wait to share more in depth information about these fragrances with you all. They've already got a leg up with me due to their semblance of minimalism. Be on the look out for reviews on these juices soon!

DISCLOSURE: sample kit provided by ROADS for consideration

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

The Art & Olfaction Awards; Submission Notice

Submissions for the third annual Art and Olfaction Awards open October 5 to December 4, 2015.

Submissions for the third annual awards are open to perfumes and experimental scent projects released to public consumption or view between January and December 2015. Submissions will be in three categories: Artisan, Independent and Experimental (learn more about our categories, here.)

Email us at to request an email reminder.

Important Dates:
  • Submissions open: Oct. 5, 2015
  • Submissions close (post office deadline): Dec. 4, 2015
  • Artisan and Independent Categories: We accept perfumes that were/will be released to market between Jan. 1 and Dec. 31, 2015.
  • Sadakichi Award for Experimental Use of Scent: We accept projects that were/will be exhibited to the public between Jan. 1 and Dec. 31, 2015.
  • Finalists will be announced at Esxence in Milan, in March 2016.
  • We will announce the winners at the award ceremony, taking place in Los Angeles on May 6, 2016.

The Submission Process:

Submitting to the Art and Olfaction Awards is a two-part process: An online submission form, followed by a physical submission package containing vials of your scent.

See a step-by-step guide and more information on The Art & Olfaction site here.

*This information is reposted from

Friday, September 11, 2015

First Impression: Tauerville Flash Scents

The month of September's (seriously, where has this year gone!?) Olfactif box brought the trio of Tauerville fragrances. It was my first time sniffing any of the Tauerville scents, and it was perfectly timed with Andy's new release of Incense Flash. Wonderful opportunity to give my first impressions, I thought.

Rose Flash 

My least favorite of the trio. Admittedly, rose is not my forte; I like it okay enough, but I'm picky. And I don't like my fragrances too sweet. Rose Flash is quite sweet, not as syrupy as Une Rose Vermeille — which I found insufferable for my tastes — but saccharine enough to put me off. If you like your roses candied, this may be for you.

Vanilla Flash

YUM. I detect tobacco instantly, and shortly after a sweet, vanillic bourbon. This reminds me very much of Le Couvent des Minimes, but sweeter. Vanilla-lovers who like their vanilla with a little more depth and intrigue will likely fancy this. I dig it.

Incense Flash

Freshly applied provides straight up L-E-A-T-H-E-R, then it fades into an incense-infused leather bag. Very dry. Smoky feeling. I like it most once it settles in, and I'm also curious about wearing this together with Vanilla Flash for a splash of sweetness.

Have you tried any of these scents from Andy Tauer? 

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Review: Jo Malone Nutmeg & Ginger


nutmeg, ginger, cedar, sandalwood

Jo Malone Nutmeg & Ginger was the first fragrance of the Jo Malone house, and it is a brilliant example of linear perfection. Some days you crave a fragrance with a multidimensional itinerary, and other days you just need a break from olfactive complexities. Like most fragrances, Nutmeg & Ginger still begins with an overstated (although not unpleasant) blast, but almost instantly dissipates into what you'll be wearing for the duration of its molecular lifespan. It is a superb imitation of freshly grated ginger, crowned by warm and spicy nutmeg, and planted atop a muted woody base. It has the same simplistically uplifting vibe that I get from a classic cologne (think Aqua di Parma Colonia). It really is that easy. 

I've seen others liken Nutmeg & Ginger to aromatherapy. I can get down with that. It synergistically provides a calming and energizing affect when sniffed. Each time I inhale this, I sort of feel like I can close my eyes and pretend my stress doesn't exist. It's swept away and replaced with a brief moment of serenity (c'mon guys, a fragrance can't take away all your problems). Nutmeg & Ginger is rather seasonless, although most seem to favor it in the cooler months. This one is sticking around for the long haul in my wardrobe; I can't get enough.

Nutmeg & Ginger retails at $65 for a 30ml bottle, and $125 for a 100ml bottle, it was created by Jo Malone

Longevity: 2/5
Projection: 2/5

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Review: Keiko Mecheri Bois de Santal

In 2015, I've taken a major liking to anything that reflects simplicity and minimalism. I listened to several minimalist-living audio books on audible, I pinned all home inspiration that reflected a clean and airy feel on pinterest, and I tried desperately to dump all the extra physical and emotional garbage that serves no purpose in life other than to contribute to stress and anxiety. I've even favored fragrance with a scent that resembles the way a Scandinavian home would feel. Moving into a tiny shoebox of an apartment is likely to blame for this desired lifestyle shift, and for the most part, I've been pretty unsuccessful in adopting the minimalistic lifestyle because I live in a home for mice…but it's a process! I have a vision! The one aspect that's easy to succeed in is seeking out perfume that feels minimalistic, and Bois de Santal is certainly a scent of minimalism. It still gets a story though…


sandalwood, osmanthus, ambergris, & tonka

Across a sunny meadow and into the opening of a shaded, but sun-speckled woods, a lover eagerly awaits their partner at a simplistically romantic self-set scene. A large stump, draped with a gauzy tablecloth, and adorned with a milk-glass vase of delicate flowers, acts as a table for sipping tea housed in a cutesy kettle and nibbling scones from a vintage pyrex plate. The lover — proud of their unconventional display of romance — waits and waits. With a furrowed brow, they shoot worried glances at the the time. In the distance, the sound of snapping twigs provides a jolt of hope, but the lover looks to find a single doe step out into the clearing instead. They lock eyes.

A charming and demure doe-eyed creature is born from an opening that resembles a rigid piece of floralized wood. Bois de Santal begins a little rough around the edges, but quickly softens into a beautifully refined slab of sandalwood, sweetened minimally by fruit-tinged florals and subdued tonka. A modicum of ambergris contributes a fuzzy factor that feels nothing short of soothing. The elements of Bois de Santal combine to provide a feeling akin to clean, powdered skin. Although I am mentioning powder (fear not, powder haters), I wouldn't describe it as a palpably powdery fragrance.

As time wears on, each layer of Bois de Santal stacks upon each other and then quiets to a comforting whisper. The Mysore sandalwood is characteristically creamy and intricate, and the perfume as a whole feels clean and refined. The more I experience the scent of sandalwood, the more I liken it to a mystical experience. I want to inhale it deeply. Breathe it in forever. Each time I've sniffed a delicious sandalwood-based fragrance, I'm sure my eyes have rolled back exceedingly far into my head. Bois de Santal is no exception. Wearing this feels, not like the jilted lover, but like the doe.

Bois de Santal EDP is $140 for a 75ml bottle

Longevity: 3/5
Projection: 2/5

Monday, September 7, 2015

Sample Mail: Sanae Intoxicants

DISCLOSURE: samples provided by Sanae Intoxicants for consideration

Sunday, September 6, 2015

Review: Imaginary Authors Falling into the Sea

"At the age of nineteen Nica Galas published her first book, the autobiographical tome Falling into the Sea which chronicled her short and torrid love affair among the hot beaches and lemon trees in the Gulf of Naples. The breathtaking story opens with Nica and her girlfriends picking bunches of jasmine flower for boys while they cliff-jumped into the sea. An innocent first kiss erupts into an ardent summer entanglement which is cut short one moonlit night when her lover leaps into the dark abyss never to surface, leaving Nica naked on the cliffs screaming his name."


lemon, bergamot, grapefruit, lychee, tropical flowers, & warm sand

Image from:

Wearing this feels like burying your feet in sun-warmed, sandy shores. Like staring into a salty, blue, sparkling sea. Like sniffing oceanside flowers on an exotic island. Like quenching your thirst with a refreshing, fresh-squeezed lemonade, from a palm tree strewn hammock. Falling into the Sea is simple, but effective. It opens with citrus that is delicately sweetened with lychee, flows into a bouquet of tropical flowers, and is soaked up into toasty, seaside sand. It is at once relaxing and rejuvenating, similar to the way a long overdue vacation is experienced. And hey, simple doesn't mean it lacks character, Falling into the Sea still maintains the unique DNA that is inherited by all Imaginary Authors fragrances.

Grapefruit has proven to be a challenging note for me in the past, it can easily veer toward a body odor or cat pee replica territory; not so here. This citrus trio is never unpleasant or sour. Interestingly, I prefer to wear this on a less scorching summer day, with low humidity. I spritzed it on before venturing out into the gross, sticky summer, hoping to prolong a fresh, uplifting vibe, and I was amazed at how hastily the balmy air gobbled it up; humidity is the pits. Worn on a warm, but non-sticky day, this guy lasts an impressive amount of time for something that is so citrusy. In this weather, it succeeds in providing an invigorating and clean mood.

This is the perfect summertime choice when you're pining for something other than a standard, coconut-bomb perfume. And because I discovered it so late in the season, I'm a little sad that summer is coming to an end (I don't say that lightly, I've been bitching about the NYC heat for the entire duration of the season), although I can see myself reaching for it in the early autumn months for a little reminder of the parts of summer that aren't so dank and sweaty.

Falling Into the Sea EDP retails for $85 for a 60ml bottle, it was created by Josh Meyer

Longevity: 3/5
Projection: 2/5

DISCLOSURE: sample gifted by IA, opinions are my own

Friday, September 4, 2015

Brand Overview: Alice & the Magician

Aaron Wisniewski is the "Magician" behind Alice & the Magician, a brand which creates edible fragrance. Aaron remembers loving the smell of freshly baked chocolate cake as a child, and the smell of a freshly peeled citrus fruit. As an adult, he has gained expertise in the world of cooking and mixology, furthuring his obsession with scent. The fact that smell directly affects taste was something that he found himself fascinated with. Aaron became enamored with specific sensory moments, and eventually gained a strong desire to replicate the wondrous smells of the world, and bottle them for extended enjoyment via spritz after spritz after spritz. He has traveled the world in an attempt to experience all kinds of scent in their most natural state.

"Aaron experienced the smell of tobacco smoke and slightly overripe fruit that lingered in the Cuban air while experiencing his first true mojito. He inhaled the cold Tuscan air at dusk: full with olive wood smoke and grilled meat. He remembers the smell of the markets in northern Thailand where his love affair with fresh kaffir lime leaves began. After such powerful experiences, he no longer wanted to merely experience these ethereal moments, he wanted to capture them and share them."

At this point, Aaron's creative venture focuses primarily on the cocktail industry, with a goal to transform and enhance the way people experience flavor. He works with his brother, Samuel Wisniewski, operating their flavor lab and aroma bar full-time in Burlington, Vermont. In addition to conducting his scent work, Aaron continues his worldly, scent-chasing travels. He also collaborates with fellow restaurant professionals and bartenders, and seeks out the quality ingredients that allow him to replicate the odors as we experience them naturally. The products are already used in bars, restaurants, and homes across the country (see here).

"We carefully source the finest & rarest ingredients on the planet and hand blend them to create more than just flavors, we create experiences. A unique technology allows us to capture the pure essence of nature at its aromatic peak without using heat, chemicals, or moisture that could damage the fragile aromatic compounds. This ensures pristine, true-to-nature aroma that is identical to fleeting flavor moments like slicing into a ripe citrus during the harvest in Grasse, inhaling sun-warmed herbs in Andalucia's garden, or pulling warm chocolate cake from the oven during a childhood birthday party."

You can read more about the Alice & the Magician story on their site, there's also a nice interview with Aaron that you can read on The Olfactive. As for the scents, I've had the pleasure of testing six of them, and I can tell you that they smell absolutely authentic and organic. I enjoy sniffing them, but it has me wishing I was more of a cocktail connoisseur. I can think of quite a few people who would love to play with these aromatic elixirs. Citrus Blossom Harvest was Aaron's very first creation, and the replication of the way a piece of citrus fruit smells as you're digging into it with your thumbs — the air suddenly atomized with citric aroma — is uncanny. If I was more brushed up on my cocktail game (I just drink them, people), perhaps I could name a few cocktails that it puts me in mind of. Just know that immediately upon smelling it, I was reminded of the aroma that briefly radiates from the glass of certain freshly-served, citrus spritzed cocktails that I've consumed.

Alice & the Magician currently have twelve scents available to purchase, which are as follows:
  • Andalucia's Garden: Andalucia had a garden of cilantro, tomatoes, and limes. In the middle of the day when the sun beat down upon it, the leaves and fruit would gently release their aroma in the freshest garden scent imaginable.
  • London Dry: The flavor components of gin but…Fresh, alive, and pure. Fresh juniper berry, bergamot, pine lemon, and fir.
  • Autumn Bonfire: There is a brief period in New England at the end of autumn before winter falls. Dried maple leaves litter the ground, firewood is stacked high, and the ground is just starting to freeze. You can walk down the street at dusk and smell these things mixed with the overwhelmingly sweet, smoky, woody, and comforting smell of people beginning to use their wood stoves and fireplaces.
  • Herbs De Provence: The fresh herbs of the traditional Provencal blend: lavender, rosemary, oregano, marjoram, savory, and thyme. This fragrance gives the impression of standing in a field of these beautiful herbs in the late afternoon.
  • Perfect Ginger: A bright, spicy, powerful, and invigorating burst of fresh ginger accented with galangal and undertones of warming citrus.
  • Citrus Blossom Harvest: The experience of peeling fresh citrus, directly from the tree during the harvest season in a sun-drenched citrus grove. The wild orange, three different grapefruits, neroli, and orange blossom in this fragrance are pure pleasure when inhaled.
  • Rosemary & Wild Honey: Hearty, green, and herbaceous rosemary is balanced and enriched with sweet, heady, and floral wild honey.
  • Sage & Exotic Citrus: The big, blond, round, and pungent aroma of fresh clary and white sage is elegantly accented with sparkles of citrus and the fresh, green note of yuzu.
  • Chocolate Birthday Cake: The sweet, gooey, unmistakable smell of a perfectly cooked chocolate birthday cake fresh from the oven during a childhood birthday party.
  • Charred Bourbon Barrel: The alluring and complex aromas of aged bourbon concentrated in the barrel staves: vanilla, smoke, clove, butterscotch, allspice, and clove to name a few.
  • Hiking the Long Trail: The Vermont outdoors captured. Green, fresh, forestry, earthy, oaky, mossy, and so much more. This fragrance lingers and changes more than any other.
  • Feast of Field & Forest: Savory, mouthwatering flavors of cultured butter, black pepper, truffle, mushroom, and wild herbs.
Clearly, the best way that you could understand how utterly authentic smelling these juices are, is by smelling them yourself. Sniffing Hiking the Long Trail reminds me exactly of the smells of camping. I'm dying to try Autumn Bonfire (if you haven't figured it out yet, fall is my favorite season) and Charred Bourbon Barrel. Rosemary & Wild Honey is a gorgeous combination of herbaceous rosemary and sweet honey, and Chocolate Birthday Cake is freshly baked cake that makes my mouth water (I love cake more than any normal person should). And okay, in case you were wondering: Yes, Alice & the Magician fragrances ARE wearable. They're not just for consuming. I will say that they don't seem to last especially long, or project with any force when sprayed onto skin, but do remember what the main intention of this product is; it is truly meant to be inhaled from the headspace of a cocktail, within the confines of a glass. Aaron doesn't claim to be a perfumer, his focus is primarily on the fascinating relationship between taste and smell, but his creations are super. He's done an amazing job at replicating scents which are intrinsic to nature and common experiences that all humans can relate to. ALSO, yes, I did taste Chocolate Birthday Cake…for science. How could I not? And no, it doesn't taste as delicious as a delightfully warm chocolate cake. When they say edible, it simply means, "you can ingest this without dying."

Alice & the Magician Edible Fragrance retails for $42.50 for a 50ml bottle, which will get you approximately 600 sprays, and $18 for a 10ml bottle, which will last approximately 100 sprays. If you have an interest in mixing cocktails, Alice & the Magician have a delightful list of recipes (here). What do you think? Are you curious?

Image from: Alice & the Magician

DISCLOSURE: product provided by A&M, scent descriptions and final two images are from A&M, I have not been compensated for this article, opinions are my own

Thursday, September 3, 2015

Fragrant Reading

Hey, hey! I felt the sudden urge to start collecting all fragrance-focused literature. So, here's two books from Mandy Aftel that I haven't cracked open yet. I've got The Perfume Guide from Luca Turin & Tania Sanchez, and The Secret of Scent (also from Luca), what else do I need? What are you favorite perfume reads?

Sample Mail: Laboratory Perfumes

"Founded in London in 2011, Laboratory Perfumes crafts unique, gender-free fragrances, scientifically formulated to react to the wearer and evolve over the day. Inspired by flowers, herbs, and aromatic botanicals from around the world, our range of eau de toilettes and scented candles is made with natural oils, selected with care and blended with precision."

More to come on this brand, in the meantime, check out their seriously beautiful website:

DISCLOSURE: product provided for consideration by Laboratory Perfumes, opinions are my own

Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Review: Etat Libre d'Orange Fils de Dieu


ginger, coriander leaves, lime, shiso, bergamot, coconut, rice, cardamom, jasmine, cinnamon, rose, tonka bean, vetiver, musk, amber, leather, & castoreum

Etat Libre d'Orange is a house that I've only begun to explore, and so far I'm intrigued. Hell, with a brand who concocts and promotes something called 'Secretions Magnifique,' how could I not be? I mean, judging by the several reviews and reaction videos, it's as disgusting as it sounds. Anyway. Fils de Dieu. That's what we're talking about. I blind bought it. I was on the fence, but then a fellow fragrance lover described it as "Shalimar for hipster babies," and I was sold; she was totally right, by the way. When I opened the box and gave it a sniff from the nozzle, I actually audibly proclaimed, "It IS Shalimar for hipster babies!" No one was there to hear my proclamation; I talk to myself a lot. Fils de Dieu certainly isn't a duplicate of Shalimar, but it has a fluffy likeness, and it does share a few similar notes.

Like trying a foreign culinary dish for the very first time, the top is interesting and exotic. It begins with a strong and realistic steamed rice, garnished with a hint of minty shiso and leafy coriander, and misted with lime juice. This realistically food-y rice platter is rather fleeting, which I'm sort of thankful for, because although its realism is intriguing, I'm not sure I want to smell like Philippine cuisine (ha, rhyme!). From here, Fils de Dieu gains a prominent sweetness, and while retaining a citrus backdrop, it pushes toward a velvety, pretty, powdered spice; blended to perfection. This development eventually settles into coconut milk with a slight leathery undercurrent, before it trails off into sweet, velutinous skin, with a diminutive, mingling floral note.

In Fils de Dieu, the addition of inedible notes help to keep it from shifting into full-on gourmand territory. It's like wearing an exotic Coron Island vacation, which is what makes it feel so perfect for summer. So, if in reading about Fils de Dieu, you're thinking (like I was) that this fragrance sounds like it would be stifling in the summer heat, I promise it works. It is pleasant and relaxing, and I'm sneaking in all the sprays I can get before autumn rolls around. Since I live in Brooklyn (a borough full of hipster babies), I fit right in. And if someone asks me what I'm wearing, I'll respond in true hipster fashion, "You've probably never heard of it."

Fils de Dieu EDP retails for $85 for a 50ml bottle, the nose is Ralf Schwieger

Longevity: 2/5
Projection: 2/5