Star rating: 5 stars–outstanding/potential classic, 4 stars–very good, 3 stars–adequate, 2 stars–disappointing, 1 star–poor.
Smelling and dismissing one new launch after the next, I start to worry that I am becoming jaded. It is even more depressing when it comes to reviewing, because unless a strong emotion stirs me, it is difficult to find inspiration for writing during my morning train ride. I would rather catch up on my sleep. Thankfully, there do exist new fragrances that manage to awake me from my literal and figurative slumber. Since I smelled À Travers le Miroir from the new Thierry Mugler Miroir Miroir collection a couple of months ago, it has been on my mind. Therefore, I decided to return to it for a closer look. …
Created by a young Mane perfumer Alexis Dadier, À Travers le Miroir means Through the Looking Glass, in reference to Lewis Carroll’s tale. It is rich, herbal, bitter, resinous and heady—quite a surprising mélange. The bright green absinthe notes confirm my discovery that the scent of this intoxicating drink shares a lot in common with the aroma of cherry leaves. For instance, that same tangy crushed stem and sugary sap note fills my mouth whenever I bite into sakura mochi, Japanese cherry leaf wrapped rice cakes.
On the blotter, the white floral notes—unctuous tuberose, fruity jasmine—dominate the composition, but on my skin, À Travers le Miroir dons a retro aura. Its dark balsamic notes set against the woody base produce an interesting chypre like effect, although classical chypre it is not. It is not a quintessentially feminine fragrance, despite its tuberose presence, and in fact, as a masculine À Travers le Miroir is very successful (albeit less dramatic.) I would pair it with a gauzy silk dress and red lipstick, since after all, playing up the contrasts makes for more excitement.
While the presence of an absinthe note would first lead to a comparison with L’Artisan Fou d’Absinthe or Victorie Gobin-Daudé Biche dans L’Absinthe (I still mourn its disappearance,) À Travers le Miroir is softer, sweeter and decidedly more feminine. Thierry À Travers le Miroir and the rest of the Miroir Miroir collection (Dis-Moi, Miroir, Miroir des Envies, Miroir des Secrets, Miroir des Vanités) is available from Saks 5th Avenue. I was less thrilled with others from the collection, although Miroir des Envies is another fragrance that I found to be unique and memorable.
Image from L’Express. If you read French, I highly recommend the accompanying article by Maïté Turonnet.