Trying 20 times

"My approach is very intellectual. I don’t do a lot of work,” [Jean-Claude Ellena] said, smiling. “I’m thinking a lot and making tiny changes. Christine [Nagel] is trying 20 times – her approach is much more intuitive.” On the day that we met, this was made manifest by two blue stickers on Nagel’s arm – perfume trials that she had been working on earlier that day. Ellena, by contrast, never wears scent – save for Terre d’Hermès about three times a year – the better to neutralise his nose.

— Read more about the changing of the guard at Hermès at Hermès perfume: scents of beauty at The Telegraph.

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Jo Malone Wood Sage & Sea Salt ~ fragrance review

Jo Malone Wood Sage & Sea Salt

Wood Sage & Sea Salt, the latest release from Jo Malone, has just begun to appear in stores. It’s a fragrance inspired by the salt air, sea grasses and rocky cliffs of the English coast, developed by perfumer Christine Nagel; its official notes include ambrette seeds, sea salt, sage, grapefruit and red algae. In a recent interview about this fragrance, Nagel also mentioned buchu leaves, plum, dried fruits, driftwood and musk as compositional elements.

Jo Malone has been hit-or-miss for me over the past year or two; I liked Peony & Blush Suede, but I wasn’t crazy about Silk Blossom, and I found the London Rain trio too dull even to think much about, much less review. Still, Wood Sage & Sea Salt sounded appealing, so I gratefully took the sample that was offered to me at a Malone counter in a department store. It turns out to be one of the recent releases that I enjoy, and it feels just right for the final weeks of summer…

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The Different Company Une Nuit Magnetique ~ fragrance review

The Different Company Une Nuit Magnetique

If it weren’t for you — and the generous dram-sized sample Robin forwarded me — I wouldn’t have given The Different Company Une Nuit Magnétique more than a cursory sniff. Usually when I test a fragrance, I start with a drop on the flesh at the base of my thumb. Then, if I like it, I give it real estate up my forearm. My test drop of Une Nuit Magnétique was sharp and tooth-achingly sweet. Not promising. If I hadn’t been considering a review, I would have quit there. It was only when I poured some into an atomizer and wet down my arm that I began to see Une Nuit Magnétique for what it really is: a tender, shimmering, intensely feminine perfume…

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