A Lab on Fire Paris*LA ~ perfume review

A Lab on Fire banner image

The idea for Paris*LA, one of the recent launches from niche brand A Lab On Fire, is simple enough: “LA, captured through Parisian eyes…”, and the description, “a refreshing Coca-cola marries a smooth-shelled macaron”, is enticing, perhaps, depending on your predisposition towards soda-inspired gourmands. I love them, the fizzier the better.

Paris*LA starts off energetically, with ginger and tart citrus (the notes: key lime, ginger, cola accord, neroli, coriander, thyme, macaron accord, amber and musk) and slowly rearranges itself into its key elements, the cola and the biscuit. The cola, admittedly, I’m not sure I’d recognize if I wasn’t looking for it. Paris*LA is only lightly fizzy on my skin, perhaps because I’m dabbing from a vial, and while all the cola “pieces” are there, it’s not the exact cola I’m used to…

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Viktor & Rolf Bonbon ~ perfume review & a quick sweet poll

Edita Vilkeviciute for Viktor & Rolf Bonbon

It’s tempting to think that Viktor & Rolf learned a simple lesson from the failure of Eau Mega, and that lesson was: sugar. Their first fragrance, Flowerbomb, wasn’t an explosion of flowers at all, but a(nother) fourth generation spawn of Thierry Mugler Angel, with cleaner (and quieter) patchouli, a few petals sprinkled here and there, and plenty of sugar. It was a huge hit. (They’ve since churned out a bazillion collector bottles, but relatively few flankers — maybe they never got the memo?) They followed with the aforementioned Eau Mega, a clean melon-y pear, and despite the fun bottle, it didn’t do so well.

Now they’re back with Bonbon. Bonbon has sugar and then some; it could easily have been a Flowerbomb flanker aimed at younger consumers — Sugarbomb? Candybomb? The possibilities are endless. But no, we’ve got Bonbon, and unlike Flowerbomb, it’s just what it says it is: candy…

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Maison Martin Margiela Replica Flower Market, Beach Walk & Funfair Evening ~ fragrance reviews

Replica Flower Market, Beach Walk & Funfair Evening, bottles

The Maison Martin Margiela Replica fragrance collection has been available in Europe for a while, but it just arrived in the United States this spring. I’ve made some strategic visits to Sephora to sniff and spritz (and to request samples!), and I’m ready to share my thoughts on three of them: Flower Market, Beach Walk and Funfair Evening, originally launched in mid-2012. All three fragrances were developed for Maison Martin Margiela by perfumers Jacques Cavallier and Marie Salamagne.

Flower Market

Flower Market “carries the scent of fresh cut flowers in the buckets and vases of a Parisian flower market in 2011,” and its composition includes notes of crushed leaves, freesia, sambac jasmine from India, Egyptian jasmine, tuberose, rose from Grasse, peach, cedarwood and oakmoss. I inhaled Flower Market hoping for the leaves and the roses to stand out…

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Thierry Mugler Angel Eau Sucree ~ perfume review

Thierry Mugler Angel Eau Sucrée visual

As a number of people have noted here in the comments recently, Thierry Mugler generally does decent flankers…just as well, perhaps, since they’re relatively slow to release new pillar fragrances. Angel Eau Sucrée, the latest flanker to 1992’s Angel, “celebrates the sweetness of Angel” and has a matching Fauchon éclair (and a ‘sugar’-frosted bottle) to drive home the point. Celebrating Angel’s sweetness may or may not be appealing to you, of course, but if it helps, it’s not the noisy sort of celebration likely to leave you with a headache in the morning.

Angel Eau Sucrée starts with ‘red berry sorbet’ — it’s sweet, and it packs some sillage, but it’s more airy and fresh than thick or jammy…

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Anna Sui Sui Dreams & Sui Dreams in Pink ~ fragrance review

Anna Sui, Sui Dreams in Pink

Sui Dreams, the second fragrance in the Anna Sui collection, was released in 2000. It’s a floral gourmand with top notes of bergamot, tangerine, nectarine and bitter orange; heart notes of peony, freesia, peach and rose; and base notes of vanilla, sandalwood, cedarwood and skin musks. It was developed for the brand by perfumer Philippe Romano.

According to the Anna Sui website, Sui Dreams “plays on a harmonious multiplicity that is warm and fresh, rich and transparent, sweet-scented and sparkling.” I’ll agree that it’s “warm,” “rich” and “sweet-scented”; some people may find it too sweet, but looking back, I admire Sui Dreams for arriving on the market long before the taste for caramel-musk-vanilla perfumes…

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