the.scentinel

scent . music . culture

  • 11th October
    2011
  • 11

Perfume(s) of the week

I was planning on reviewing Tom Ford’s Santal Blush, since it was new and to my knowledge not available everywhere (I loved the top note but disliked it more and more as it dried down: too much cumin for my taste.) BUT one of my very best friends came back from a soul-searching trip to Europe, with a gift in hand. She, and in knowing me, bought the perfect present: a set of perfume samples. From Divine, a small, humble, (yet distinct with class and originality) set of creations made by Yvon Mouchel. I know the collection has been around for a while, but this is the first time I have had the privilege of smelling his creations. (Brace yourselves, this is going to be a long one!)

                                              

L’inspiratice caught my eye at the mere glance of the word. I loved it instantly. The more I wore it though, the more I kept comparing it to something very similar: Boisé Torride by Guerlain, a part of their Elixir Charnel special collection. It is a little sweeter than the latter, and less woody, but the comparison is still there. Not to say that I don’t still enjoy it though! It works really well on my skin, the more I wear it, the more I like it and it has great sillage. It has notes of bergamot, rose, ylang-ylang, peony, vanilla, tonka bean, vetiver, white musk and patchouli. 

Then we go on to L’âme soeur, meaning ‘soulmate’. The aldehydes at the departure are quite strong, but not overpowering. On the skin, the aldehydes almost smell like johnson & johnson’s baby shampoo. So, clean, crisp with a hint of soapy. I don’t smell the jasmine as much as I smell the rose, and I was pleasantly surprised to see liatrix listed as one of the ingredients in the flavour text (since I was under the impression that it was no longer allowed to be used.) L’âme soeur has aldehydes, jasmine, Bulgarian otto rose, ylang-ylang, ambergris and liatrix.

L’être aimé (pour Femme) is super interesting. It is warm, rich and absolutely mysterious. It is introduced as ‘a poem to the everlasting flower’. In perfumery, this is also known as immortelle (found in the ambery family). I didn’t find it too diffusive on my skin but the top note is delicious. I even smell a hint of olive oil, which plays very well into the Mediterranean theme of the perfume. It is really hard to create a good immortelle accord, but this one is refined and quite original. The notes listed are bergamot, neroli, nectarine, jasmine, lily, rose, and everlasting flowers. In the base, you find amber and exotic woods, cistus (brings the warmth together), sandalwood, vetiver and a hint of vanilla.

L’infante is innocent, and a little bubbly, It is a fresh floral, perfect for summer. At first, I was expecting it to be a little too ‘young’, but the blackcurrant leaves give it a sophisticated charm and the ivy gives it a slightly green, slightly metallic depth. I would say it’s good to wear on a outdoors date of some kind. L’infante has ylang-ylang, chinese jasmine, pivoine (peony), blackcurrant leaves, ivy, ambergris, vanilla, tonka bean and musk. 

                   

Now onto the masculine fragrances..

L’homme de coeur is a very masculine iris scent. It starts off very fresh, and quite aromatic. The combination of the juniper berries, angelica and cypress is fantastic. The iris is obvious right away, and a carrot note almost comes out. Which isn’t at all surprising because carrot oil and orris absolute (in my opinion) have a similar quality. A confident man should wear this, and will get many compliments. L’homme de coeur has notes of angelica, juniper berries, cypress, woods, amber, vetiver, ambergris, liatrix and musk. 

L’être aimé (pour Homme) didn’t float my boat as much as it’s feminine counterpart. The celery note was too overpowering, and although the everlasting flower is supposed to be the star, I smell more ‘salty’ than anything else. It is more culinary than olfactory I find. It has notes of bergamot, tincture of lavender, ginger, basil, celery, cardamom, everlasting flowers. In the base, amber and exotic woods, cistus, patchouli, sandalwood and vetiver. 

L’homme sage is absolutely irresistible! I love love love it. It would make a man seem instantly more attractive, and even though it’s not for women, I’ve worn it, and so has my roommate. It’s that good! It has that classic quality you can find in the old YSL or Hermes perfumes for men. It is woody enough for a manly man and interesting enough for a business man. It gives a younger man that extra oomph and an older man the refinement that comes with an aged wine.  It’s a must-have. L’homme sage has notes of saffron, mandarin, cardamom and lychee, aromatic woods, everlasting flowers, patchouli, oakmoss, amber and incense. (yum)

Eau divine is the eau de cologne of the collection. It’s refreshing but not as attention grabbing as the other perfumes in the collection. I’m also probably biased because I don’t usually enjoy eau de colognes, I lean towards heavier perfumes in general. It is super fresh; cucumber cool. It has notes of italian citrus (assuming bergamot and lemon oil here), star anise (which I don’t smell all that much), rose hip, ginger, nutmeg, orange flower, sweet violet, white amber, ‘hot’ musk, and labdanum. I also smell a hint of thyme or something to that effect. This can absolutely be a unisex fragrance.

And finally, Divine. A fruity floral, smells like it has a hint of aldehydes but it is not listed. I find it a little old fashioned, it has the peach note similar to that of Mitsouko (one of my favourite classics). It is undeniably classy though, very chic. I would say it is definitely more of a feminine fragrance than a masculine, but I wouldn’t be opposed to trying it on someone else’s skin actually (why not?) Divine has fruity peach note, coriander, unspecified florals, oakmoss, musk and vanilla. Out of all the creations, I would say this was the most traditional, yet still effective as a perfume, and very well put together. 

The first thing I thought when I smelled the collection, was ‘quality’. That truly makes everything better, knowing that many of the perfumes were created by the great Yann Vasnier, just made it so much better!

I thoroughly enjoyed the whole thing because I knew that these perfumes became popular due to word of mouth. What better way to introduce your creations than by letting them speak for themselves?

You can find the perfumes on luckyscent.

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