It is yet another unreasonably cold day here, and so I am reaching for one of my favorite winter comfort scents. Theorema was launched by Fendi in 1998, and the narrow-shouldered bottle was inspired by the shape of the classic Fendi handbag. It was developed by perfumer Christine Nagel, and the notes are tangelo, jasmine, thai shamouti (orange), osmanthus, spices, cinnamon, pink pepper, sandalwood, guaiac wood, amber, macassar, sweet cream, and musk.
The top notes are cheerful, with a very bright and juicy orange underscored with strong, dusty spices. The cinnamon is pronounced, and there are other spices as well — possibly nutmeg, possibly cardamom? It settles into a soft, lightly spicy scent with woody base notes. The sweet cream gives it a milky, almost vanillic feel, and there is tiniest whiff of something like dusty cocoa, however it is by no means overly sweet and it is only slightly foody. The floral notes are very muted, and the woody amber base is more pale than not.
Theorema is a cozy scent, perfect for winter although it can probably be worn in any season outside of high summer. It is classified as an oriental, but it is much lighter and more transparent than that might imply. Over the years, Fendi has released this in several lighter versions, including an Esprit d’Ete and a Theorema Leggero, but I have never tried them and I don’t find the regular Eau de Parfum particularly heavy.
I believe Theorema is discontinued, although I read somewhere (sorry, can no longer find the link!) that it is still produced for the Italian market. At any rate it is readily available through the online discounters in the US, and I purchased my bottle fairly recently in a discount store in a mall.
Have a favorite winter comfort scent? Please comment.
Update, 2/07: I recently had the chance to try Theorema in the Parfum form, and it is a lovely scent. The base is deeper and richer, and slightly darker, with both the jasmine and the amber more in evidence. I might just prefer the brightness of the Eau de Parfum, but it is very much worth a try, assuming you can find it.