Francis Kurkdjian: 14 posts

Elizabeth Arden Green Tea : Perfume Review

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Andy discovers how refreshing and uplifting Elizabeth Arden’s Green Tea can be.

Potent is the last word I’d associate with Elizabeth Arden’s Green Tea, yet when I first tried it, it felt like a jolt of something refreshing and uplifting. It was very early in my fragrance journey, when I wanted to build a small fragrance wardrobe without spending too much. I can remember picking up a bottle of Green Tea for $10 during a sweltering May heat wave, ravenously ripping the packaging open in my overheated car, and spraying myself liberally. To this day, I still reach for Green Tea whenever I need some immediate relief from the heat, or for no reason at all, because it is both refreshingly simple and pleasantly sparkling.

green tea

Elizabeth Arden launched Green Tea in 1999, following dozens of other fragrances (like Tommy Girl and Ck One) in the trendsetting footsteps of Bulgari’s Eau Parfumée au Thé Vert. But in comparison to Thé Vert’s nuanced, misty interpretation of green tea, Elizabeth Arden’s Green Tea, composed by Francis Kurkdjian, smells somewhat one-dimensional. As a result, Green Tea can be considered neither revolutionary nor particularly outstanding in composition, but instead it seems to me a study in technical expertise, of making the most out of a formula that is composed of relatively few ingredients while still smelling complete.

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Carven Le Parfum : Perfume Review

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In the 1940s the Carven fashion house was famous for its youthful and wearable designs, but it truly made a splash when Ma Griffe launched in 1946. Exhilarating, bold, and playful, its first perfume aimed at young women found a loyal fan base.  A few notable and not so notable perfumes later, the house entered into slow decline. Few will remember Variations launched in 2000 or the excitingly named Carven Homme dating to 1999. Today Carven is experiencing a revival, and for its debut, Carven Le Parfum, the house teamed up with Francis Kurkdjian to design the perfume and Thierry de Baschmakoff (he also worked on The Different Company concept) to create the packaging.

carven

Everything about Carven is as you would expect. Mostly, it’s because like many new launches today it doesn’t offer anything new. Carven took few risks with this sparkling white floral blend. If you like smelling clean and fresh–straight out of the shower sexy, as many in the industry like to call it–then Carven would be the right choice.

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Narciso Rodriguez Musc for Her Oil : Long Lost Favorite

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Nrmor

Do you have a discontinued fragrance that you long to see back on the perfume counter, and failing that, to replace with something similar? I receive many emails about long lost favorites, and most of the time I respond to them with my personal suggestions. However, I’ve decided that it might be better to post such requests here on Bois de Jasmin, so that readers can include their own recommendations. So, going forward, if you are searching for a discontinued fragrance and need help, you’re welcome to email me (editor at boisdejasmin dot com), and we will do our best to help.

After receiving several emails about Narciso Rodriguez for Her Musc Oil, I’ve decided to look into it. The oil form of Musc for Her was a limited edition that focused on the creamy musk facet of the original Eau de Toilette. The citrus, sharp amber, and woody notes were sheared out, with the elegant, luscious musk brought center stage. Musc for Her Oil smelled deliciously of warm skin and apricot flesh, with a hint of honey. Musc for Her collection, which also included Musc for Her EDT and Musc for Him EDT (black bottle) was launched in 2003. In 2009, Narciso Rodriguez added Musc for Her Intense Eau de Parfum and Musc for Him Eau de Parfum (iridescent violet bottle). Then in 2010, Essence Eau de Musc (silver bottle) appeared on the counters. These days we also have a limited edition called Essence Musc Intense Eau de Parfum. That is exactly why I dislike flankers—figuring out how they are related makes me feel like I’m solving some cognitive reasoning game.

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Elie Saab Le Parfum : Fragrance Review

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Saab

Star rating: 5 stars–outstanding/potential classic, 4 stars–very good, 3 stars–adequate, 2 stars–disappointing, 1 star–poor.

Once upon a time, the woods were for men and the flowers were for women. Coco Chanel and her perfumer Ernest Beaux rebelled against these stereotypes by creating Bois des Iles, a dark woody composition that was as elegant as it was shocking. The new generation of feminine woody fragrances, from Estee Lauder Sensuous to Bulgari Jasmin Noir, layers the woods so heavily with the floral notes that the character becomes blurred.  Unfortunately, most fragrances in that family are what I label as “acrylic florals”—possessing in equal measure the strident sharpness of woods and the neon brightness of modern floral notes. Elie Saab Le Parfum is the latest example of this genre, a cross between Sensuous and Narciso Rodriguez for Her.

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Francis Kurkdjian : Recipe for a Great Perfumer

Francis Kurkdjian

A remarkably talented perfumer, a creator of his own brand, a former ballet dancer, Francis Kurkdjian represents an idea of a Renaissance man. He first became famous for Jean Paul Gaultier Le Male, which became of the defining masculine fragrances for the 1990s. Subsequently, he created a wide array of scents, from airy Elizabeth Arden Green Tea to smoldering Christian Dior Eau Noire. He also has his own eponymous line. Below are a few excerpts from a good interview Kurkdjian gave to Kanokporn Chanasongkram of Bangkok Post (originally published on September 2005.)

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