Kenzo Amour, aka kenzoamour, is this year's fragrance release from the house of Kenzo. Amour was created by perfumers Daphne Bugey and Olivier Cresp and features notes of cherry blossom, rice steam, white tea, frangipani, heliotrope, thanaka wood, incense, vanilla and musk. It was...
...inspired by a couple's voyage through India, Japan and Vietnam.
"The basic idea was a voyage of love, of emotion, and a bird as a symbol of love," explained Patrick Guedj, Parfums Kenzo's creative director and head of marketing, referring to a multicolored turtledove featured on the fragrance's packaging and in advertising. (via Women's Wear Daily, 5/15/2006)
Amour starts with a sweet, highly stylised floral accord. After that, the floral notes rapidly fade into the backdrop, and the whole thing settles into a fluffy, cloud-like concoction of vanilla and musky woods. As advertised, there is a suggestion of milky rice (rice "steam" is perfectly accurate), and the whole is finished with a light dusting of powder. It is sweet, but not cloying, and manages to vaguely recall rice pudding — I have seen several comparisons to Tan Guidicelli's Annam, although that fragrance has more obvious Asian influences — without being at all foody.
As Victoria of Bois de Jasmin has noted, there is nothing in the least exotic about it despite the references to far-away lands. Amour is, if anything, an extraordinarily tame fragrance: there is nothing to ruffle the surface other than a persistent undertone of dark wood and a dash of incense. But as with rice pudding, it is the blandness itself that is compelling; it just smells nice, and there is something rather calming about it. I prefer last year's Kenzo Flower Oriental, but Amour is a pleasant, very-wearable fragrance, and certainly worth trying.
The bottles are by designer Karim Rashid, who also created the Kenzo Ryoko packaging and the bottle for Kenzo Summer. They are the sort of wonderful bottles that fairly scream "buy me". The orange bottle is 100 ml; the white is 50 ml, and the fuschia is 30 ml.
Kenzo Amour is an Eau de Parfum, and the lasting power is extraordinary; I can still smell it after 12 hours. A body lotion is slated to be released later this year; then a lighter version of the fragrance, geared towards the Asian market, is expected to debut in 2007.
Amour is currently exclusive to Nordstrom. Last week, my local Nordstrom was making samples on demand from an urn. Have I mentioned how much I love Nordstrom? I will never understand why other department stores won't follow suit and give samples freely. It helps sells perfume, doesn't it?