Let’s continue with the light-hearted themes because I need to take my pleasure where I can find it. I’ve been doing some work on men’s and women’s fragrances for the last couple of weeks, which has been a pleasure, I must say, and has caused me to break out of a fragrance rut.
Over the years, the fragrance I’ve worn probably more than any other is Calvin Klein Obsession, which I’ve worn since the early 90s, that being the first time I could afford actual perfume. I still love it today and think of it as a heavy winter fragrance as well as being ostentatiously sexy and smelling like money. It’s like a big 1980s mansion with gold-plated everything and all the furniture draped in furs. Big, heavy amber base notes. But you know all this already. Because it’s not quite suitable for the summer, I’ve worn a range of summer fragrances but have never found one I wanted to stick with forever. I had a lot of respect for the giant bunch of roses that is YSL Paris Premieres Roses, for example, but I don’t love it enough for a long commitment.
Anyway the fragrances project caused me to come into contact with lots of new perfumes as well as reading about them which was really educational and caused me to call these three my new favourites.
DKNY Be Desired (2015). Grapefruit. Orange. Very clean and fresh. Violet is an interesting mix with the citrus fruits and keeps this out of grapefruit body wash territory. As the fragrance dries down the grapefruit relaxes and the violets bloom. Very intriguing combination, outside of my usual repertoire and certainly the most suitable one out of these three for everyday use at this time of year.
Guerlain La Petite Robe Noire (2009). Bursting with black cherries and licorice, could easily be alcoholic, a bit like cherry brandy or some fancy dark liqueur. Starts out very brightly and assertively with lemon and the dark fruit, then eventually dries down to raspberry macaroon and Bakewell tart territory. Almond and sweet vanilla make you think that pudding must be on its way. A little musk at the base draws you in to conduct a closer investigation. Yum.
Dior Hypnotic Poison (1998) I knew I was going to like this fragrance after reading a bunch of reviews that described it variously as smelling like root beer and play dough. An almost cloying fragrance that wraps around you like a blanket. Very distinctive and recognisable – once you’ve smelled it, you’d know it again. Despite the play dough element, this is actually quite an adult fragrance, in my view, perhaps because it doesn’t rely on traditional girlish florals. I don’t mind smelling like a bunch of roses or whatever but this is a bit more interesting.
I’ve been asking everyone I meet what fragrances they wear. The answers have been really interesting. Some people have much more expensive tastes than others.