I was an Equipage fiend. When I smelled Equipage for the first time in Los Angeles in 1993, I became hooked on the perfume in seconds and, for weeks, took the bottle with me everywhere I went…spraying, spraying, spraying all through the day. My best friend, a perfume fanatic herself, asked me on one memorable occasion to “STOP!” applying, or should I say RE-applying, Equipage. My friend and I were going to dinner and she made a quick stop at a dry cleaner’s to pick up a dress; when she returned to the car, the Equipage fumes were so strong she began to cough. She smelled Equipage in her car for days afterwards (but went on to buy Equipage aftershave for her father at Christmas).
I depleted my last bottle of Equipage around 1996 and I decided to take a “break” from the fragrance so I wouldn’t tire of it. I never got around to buying Equipage again. Now, I am about to smell it for the first time in 13 years. Here goes — (pssssst!) — AAAAAAHHHHHHHHH! I’m in heaven! Balmy, relaxed, warm and addictive, Equipage is as I remember it — and I want to use every drop of my Equipage sample immediately.
Equipage was created for Hermès by perfumer Guy Robert and it debuted in 1970; listed notes include bergamot, lily of the valley, carnation, jasmine, pine, rosewood, tonka bean, vetiver and patchouli. Equipage opens with a “blur” of summery bergamot and ‘spice’; I detect clove-carnation almost immediately, and other well-blended floral notes mingle with light pine. Equipage’s notes gather together and create a “faux” tobacco accord — imagine shredded, blond tobacco leaves dampened with mellow resins and smooth patchouli.
When I first wore Equipage ages ago, I couldn’t figure out WHY I liked it so much; now I know. I love incense and the Japanese “listening to incense” ceremony; during the ceremony, an aromatic woodchip is placed on hot ash or onto a hot mica plate and is slowly warmed to release its scent. Equipage’s combination of “toasting” sweet wood (almost smoky), spicy flowers and strange tobacco-resin reminds me of the fragrant woodchips used in the incense ceremony. My friend who ordered me to “STOP!” reapplying Equipage almost 16 years ago is still my friend; I can’t wait to saturate myself with Equipage and pay her a visit. Will she remember Equipage? I hope the carefree, blissful aroma of Equipage takes her back in time to a sunny (and funny) Los Angeles afternoon.
Hermès Equipage is available in 50 and 100 ml Eau de Toilette.