Labor Day has come and gone, and here in Seattle we’re headed into autumn fast; this weekend was chilly and rainy. But down south (in the Southern Hemisphere) spring is about to arrive, and this winter many of us in the north will vacation in warmer climes to escape cold weather at home. As I sampled Lauder Men Brasil Dream for Him and Issey Miyake a scent by issey miyake this weekend, I was reminded it’s always toasty somewhere, and summery scents like these not only travel well to beach-y destinations but remind us of summer no matter where we are or what type of weather we’re enduring.
Lauder Men Brasil Dream for Him is reminiscent of older Comptoir Sud Pacifique fragrances (those developed before the Great Vanilla Wave splashed into every Comptoir Sud Pacifique perfume vat); Brasil Dream for Him reminds me of L’Eau du Gouverneur…but with more complexity. Brasil Dream for Him (perfumer unknown) contains kumquat, bergamot, coriander, cardamom, white pepper, neroli, nutmeg, cinnamon, oregano, patchouli, labdanum, jalapeño pepper, pimento and leather.
Brasil Dream for Him starts with the most delightful (but most fugitive) of citrus notes: kumquat. After the kumquat note disappears, I smell bergamot mixed with spices: accent on cinnamon, nutmeg and cardamom. The spice accord is light, but persistent, and it doesn’t remind me of food (nutmeg-scented custard or cardamom cookies) but of an open-air spice market where all colorful whole and ground spices are displayed for sale under the hot sun. As the fragrance dries down, nutmeg remains strong and is joined by a bit of pepper, oregano and sheer wood. Thankfully, I do not smell leather at all; a leather note, for me anyway, would take away some of the fresh, “spice island” character of Brasil Dream for Him.
I’ve never bought a Lauder Men/Estée Lauder fragrance, but the next time I visit British Columbia I might stop at Duty Free on the way home to get a bottle of Brasil Dream for Him. Currently, Lauder Men Brasil Dream for Him (50 ml Cologne spray) is available only at travel retail outlets. (Sorry, I was so busy smelling this, re-smelling it, that I forgot to look at the price.)
In some corner of your home or office do you have an indestructible (forgot to water it? fine!, no sun?, fine!) snake plant (more colorfully known as a mother-in-law’s tongue plant)? If you have not given this plant enough light, water and food, you have probably not seen it flower. Flowering snake plant smells wonderful: its white-green blossoms are rich with nectar and produce a powerful perfume that screams “tropical rainforest!” The snake plant blossoms’ perfume is “spooky”: imagine the scent of a jungle crypt with mingled aromas of cool rain, moist earth and damp, green moss — throw in a bouquet of fragrant lilies and garlands of jasmine to honor a newly interred corpse and you have my impression of a scent by issey miyake.
According to Issey Miyake P.R., the perfume is all about the “poetry of minimalism” and the inspiration was “the mountains of Japan….” As you can tell, the Miyake P.R. folks and I got a completely different “vibration” from this perfume, and I guarantee Mt. Fuji smells NOTHING like a scent by issey miyake.
Perfumer Daphné Bugey created a scent by issey miyake and it contains notes of lemon verbena, galbanum, jasmine, hyacinth, cedar, crystal moss and musk. If you strain your nasal apparatus, you can smell many of the individual notes in this perfume, but all those flowers, moss, “green” notes and sheer musk produce a zingy, powerful vegetal-floral-earth accord — cool, wet and “of the jungle.” I’m shocked that the Miyake folks describe this perfume as minimalist. If this is “minimalism”, the “opulent” of such a perfume-rating scale would kill those who sniffed it.
A scent by issey miyake begins to wane after three hours on skin (you can still smell it, but it’s close to the body). Thankfully, the perfume does not become soapy or too “white” musky as it fades; there are still some residual floral-green notes in the base. Men and women may (of course!) wear any perfumes they like, but I’m betting men (even perfume lovers) smelling a scent by issey miyake will deem it more ‘feminine’ than ‘unisex.’ (For what it’s worth) I do.
Issey Miyake a scent by issey miyake is available in 30, 50, 100 and 150 ml Eau de Toilette.