Issey Miyake Nuit d’Issey : Fragrance Review

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Many like to knock contemporary masculine perfumery. It’s boring. It’s bland. It’s all fake citrus and sharp lavender, fly the accusations. I have often been the accuser, but today I’m going to defend the valiant attempts to make a sensible masculine fragrance. Folks, making a good masculine is just so darn hard. As far as the audience goes, many men, especially in North America and Germany, are a conservative bunch. The consumer data tell the story: they are more hesitant to try something different. They prefer to wear fragrances similar to what their fathers wore. Many don’t want to admit they even wear scent. “I don’t wear perfume,” says my cousin as he walks around in a huge cloud of Axe body spray.

nuitissey

If perfume companies assume that men will wear anything under a familiar label, they make a mistake. Even if your average guy doesn’t want to push his boundaries with new scents, he still wants quality and classical good taste. When my cousin’s beloved Axe Apollo got reformulated and lost in diffusion and finesse, he instantly noticed it. What resulted was a soliloquy worthy of a Greek tragic hero.

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Lily of the Valley Potpourri

A couple of years ago my aunt gave me a book called L’Art de Simplicité (The Art of Simplicity) that promised to declutter my life. After the first five pages, I felt like a failure. My bedroom is nothing like a room at a Zen monastery, my kitchen resembles a spice aisle at Kalustyan’s, and my living room with its overspilling bookshelves is more reminiscent of a public library during children’s hour than a space where two adults live.

lily of the valley potpourri

After reading much sensible advice on paring down and retaining only the essentials, I put L’Art de Simplicité down in my ziggurat of other books and haven’t picked it up since. You know what? I like having a bit of chaos in my life. It doesn’t stress me out that my perfume samples aren’t sorted alphabetically or that I have far too many bottles of flavored vinegar. What are the essentials anyway? What if I want to make salad with blackcurrant and rose vinegar today and try grilled chicken marinated in the juniper variety. I also can’t decide whether I want to wear a cologne or a voluptuous rose, so all options are around.

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Traveling Perfume Box : USA

Our US perfume box is ready to make its next round. If you are in the States and would like to participate, here is how you can do it. And whether you’re participating or not, please read Noele’s perfume descriptions below.

One organizational note: when you’re ready to ship your box onto someone else, please send me the full list of samples in the box and your perfume notes.

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How does it work: To enter, please post a comment answer these questions: 1) are you in the USA, and if you’re a winner, can I share your email address with Noele? ; 2) do you agree to pass the box onto someone else within two weeks or so (add a couple of your own samples and share your sampling notes with the rest of us)? and 3) what perfume are you wearing today? I will pick the next person to receive the box via a random number generator. I will announce that person in this spot and contact them via email. The next person to receive the box is Vishishta.

When a winner is ready to pass the box onto someone else, they should get in touch with me. Please include the full list of samples and your sampling notes (what you’ve discovered, what you’ve liked/disliked, any observations you care to include).

To check the progress of our boxes, please click on the Traveling Sample Box tag.

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Traveling Perfume Box : Europe

Our European perfume box is ready to make its next round. Thank you, Christine! So, if you are in Europe and would like to participate, here is how you can do it. And whether you’re participating or not, please read Christine’s perfume descriptions below.

barcelona-men

How does it work: To enter, please answer these questions: 1) are you in Europe, and if you’re a winner, can I share your email address with Christine? ; 2) do you agree to pass the box onto someone else (add a couple of your own samples and share your sampling notes with the rest of us)? and 3) what perfume are you wearing today? I will pick the next person to receive the box via a random number generator. I will announce that person in this spot and contact them via email. The next person to receive the box is laurinha.

When a winner is ready to pass the box onto someone else, they should get in touch with me. Please include the list of samples and your sampling notes (what you’ve discovered, what you’ve liked/disliked, any observations you care to include).

To check the progress of our boxes, please click on the Traveling Sample Box tag.

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Les Muscs et Les Parfums : The Osmotheque Event

On Wednesday, May 27th, the perfume conservatory Osmothèque will present a new lecture on the role of musks in perfumery. Titled “Les Muscs et Les Parfums”, the event will explore different facets of musks and the reason they are an essential ingredient in the perfumer’s palette. The lecture will be led by Max Gavarry, the author of famous fragrances such as Molyneux Vivre (1971), Guy Laroche J’ai Osé (1977), Rochas Mystère (1978), and Caron Infini (1972).

infini ad

When: May 27th, Wednesday at 18h30 (1.5-2 hours duration)
Where: 8 Avenue de la Porte de Champerret, 75017 Paris
Online Order Fees: 22€ per person; the reduced fee for students and members of Société des Amis de l’Osmothèque is 16€. Entry for students of ISIPCA is free. To reserve your tickets, please click here.

If anyone goes to the event, could you please let us know your thoughts about it in the comments here? Of course, if you want to write up a short report, we would love it.

Extra: you can also read about different types of musks used in your favorite fragrances in my article, Musk : Salt and Butter of Perfumery. It was written 10 years ago (and updated); it’s still among the most visited posts on Bois de Jasmin.

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