Narcissus: 8 posts

L’Artisan Parfumeur Mont de Narcisse : Perfume Review

44444

Narcissus is a flower that doesn’t smell floral. In general, the perfumery palette abounds in aromatics that play tricks on the senses. For instance, an iris note in fragrance smells more of carrots than of blossoms. Patchouli, a leaf, smells like woods. And so on. Narcissus, however, is one of the most intriguing ingredients. If you expect petals, April showers and gauzy lightness, you’ll be in for a surprise.

On its own narcissus absolute smells of woods and leather and has a facet reminiscent of damp hay. If you let it develop on a blotter and sniff it the next day, you’ll notice caramelized spices–cinnamon and clove–and a hint of musk.  It’s a powerful material and it often plays the role of a supporting player in the composition, lifting up the delicate floral or citrus accords or else accenting the woods and animalic notes. Guerlain’s Vol de Nuit is one of the best examples of narcissus in classical perfumery.

Continue reading →

Penhaligon’s Ostara : Fragrance Review

55555

My tastes for white florals are indiscriminate, encompassing everything from vulgar things like Guerlain Mayotte to prim school governess types like Jessica McClintock. But even I can get tired of the genre and retreat to other pastures for a change–dry woods and damp mosses, perhaps. This is what happened for most of last year, when I was so satiated with white florals that I declared a moratorium on new acquisitions. But it’s a testament to Pehnaligon’s Ostara’s loveliness that despite my best intentions, I ended up breaking my resolve.

ostara

Ostara shines brightly to me for its surprising combination of the lush, decadent heft that makes lovers of white florals swoon and the exhilarating springtime freshness. Perfumer Bertrand Duchaufour built the composition around the theme of narcissus, a flower that on a stem smells honeyed and indolic, but when turned into essence becomes leathery, musky and somber. Ostara melds both facets, but it stays on the sunny side.

Continue reading →

Carolina Herrera by Carolina Herrera : Perfume Review

44444

Elisa discovers another underrated gem and white floral beauty in Carolina Herrera’s 1988 perfume. But don’t say that you haven’t been warned about its big sillage and quintessential 80s character.

My mother has never worn perfume, so as a young girl I had to look elsewhere for scented role models. One was my grandmother, who introduced me to the wonders of White Linen. Another was my best friend’s mother, a beautiful, petite brunette who always entered the room in a cloud of womanly sillage. Her weapons of choice – I remember seeing the bottles on her vanity – were the original Escada and Carolina Herrera.

carolina herrera

They both seemed impossibly glamorous and “grown up” from that vantage point. But in my first year of full-on, post-rabbit-hole perfume mania, I remember realizing with a jolt that, as an adult woman myself now, I am free to drown myself in Carolina Herrera if I choose to. Not having smelled it in years if not decades, I picked up a small bottle of the EDP at a discount store (in the classic polka-dot box). I got it home, sprayed it on, and smiled in recognition: it hadn’t changed.

Continue reading →

Hermes Eau de Narcisse Bleu and Eau de Mandarine Ambree : Perfume Reviews

44444

When I reviewed Annick Goutal colognes recently, I mentioned that the trio would be great for those who are new to this fresh citrusy genre. The Hermès cologne collection would be my other recommendation. You can have a cologne flight starting from the champagne dryness of Eau d’Orange Verte and continuing with the white wine effervescence of Eau de Pamplemousse Rose. If you’re ready to try something more challenging, Eau de Gentiane Blanche offers a cocktail of green peppers and milky sap oozing from dandelions.

hermes-cologne

With Eau de Narcisse Bleu and Eau de Mandarine Ambrée having recently joined the collection, you have even more interesting choices. The fragrances round out Hermès’s cologne offerings with the elegant interpretation of spring flowers and sweet citrus. Both fragrances are polished and refined in a way that is typical of most fragrances by Jean-Claude Ellena, and either would be equally suited to both men and women.

Continue reading →

Parfums de Nicolai Le Temps d’une Fete : Perfume Review

44444

Letemps

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

There is something exhilarating and uplifting about the green notes. A whiff of crushed leaves, mowed grass or of minced herbs—and suddenly the breath of spring itself envelops you, making you feel giddy. Yet, strong verdant accords in fragrances are notoriously difficult to weave in such a way that the perfume maintains its effervescent quality without being overly sharp and aggressive. Therefore, most fragrances interpret the idea of verdancy in a rather tame manner, using the green accords as mere accents. Le Temps d’une Fête by Parfums de Nicolaï comes as a pleasant surprise—a sophisticated fragrance that presents a vibrant green theme, yet retaining a plush, caressing quality on the skin. It has the bold character of Balmain Vent Vert, while it wears as elegantly as Guerlain Chamade.

Continue reading →

From the Archives

Latest Comments

  • Laura in Niche Perfume Giveaway: 1) I would love either of the La Danza’s! My next choice would be Naxos because I already have those lovely Hiram Green’s. 2) Coco is the perfume that has… January 21, 2020 at 8:52pm

  • SublimiSomnium in Niche Perfume Giveaway: 1. I love orientals – so probably Hiram Green Slowdive or Dilettante 2. Victoria Secrete Dream Angel – won a limited edition fancy bottle of it which was wholly unsatisfying… January 21, 2020 at 4:32pm

  • Silvermoon in On the Spice Route: Hello Klaas, today I am wearing L’Air du Desert Marocain. I really love it, and especially on a cold crisp sunny winter day. It is a perfume that I think… January 21, 2020 at 3:47pm

  • Sebastian in Niche Perfume Giveaway: 1. The two Hiram Green and Naxos seem to my taste. 2. A long time ago Egoiste has made me wonder what is that smell and why do I like… January 21, 2020 at 3:42pm

Latest Tweets

Design by cre8d
© Copyright 2005-2020 Bois de Jasmin. All rights reserved. Privacy Policy