Judging by photographs alone, designer Hubert de Givenchy is a man who is comfortable in his skin (and in his well-tailored, but understated, clothes); he always appears at ease — though his eyes often have a dreamy and sad air about them. I can’t imagine Givenchy having a temper tantrum, but I can believe the restrained and lovely Vétyver is his favorite cologne.
Vétyver debuted in 1959 and it was discontinued after Givenchy retired in 1995. Vétyver is a member of Les Mythiques — a group of classic Givenchy fragrances that have been re-launched in newly designed packaging. Vétyver contains bergamot, coriander leaves, sandalwood, and three varieties of vetiver — the “outfit” is simple, but deluxe.
Often, when I reach for a bottle of perfume, I feel as if I’m approaching a personality that I will be spending hours of my day with; some days as I look over the rows of bottles in my cabinet I yearn for giggles (Annick Goutal Duel — to me, this bright fragrance is more ‘pillow fight’ than ‘classic duel with pistols’), on other days I want a languorous conversation — punctuated with a kiss or two (Parfumerie Generale Querelle), and occasionally I may want to reminisce about the past (Guerlain Jicky). I reach for Vétyver when I feel a need for serenity — Vétyver whispers.
Vétyver is a “calm” and well-blended fragrance; it starts with citrusy, fizzy vetiver and proceeds quickly to a deep, dusty vetiver aroma. Vétyver stays close to the skin and because of its chic simplicity (it’s all about smooth, sophisticated vetiver) it layers well with other fragrances, especially citrus perfumes.
Givenchy Vétyver is available in a 100 ml spray for $65. Other masculine fragrances in the Givenchy Les Mythiques collection are: Monsieur de Givenchy, Xeryus and Insensé.
Note: image of Hubert de Givenchy via Sephora.