The Different Company I Miss Violet ~ fragrance review

The Different Company I Miss Violet

I Miss Violet is the latest from French niche line The Different Company, working with perfumer Bertrand Duchaufour (shown above left). It’s a unisex floral / vegetal leather, and the brand’s description is reasonably close to reality:

Discover a vegetal leather accord at the heart and the base of the sillage. Bertrand Duchaufour creates the fragrance like a sculptor and brings out green notes with the freshness of basil and tangerine right behind a vibrant and sparkling champagne note…

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Masque Milano Russian Tea ~ fragrance review

Masque Milano Russian Tea

There’s a kind of fragrance that especially intrigues me: it’s the type that reads as warm and cool at the same time. This kind of fragrance’s notes are warm — leather, spices, wood, for instance — but its overall feeling is thin and cool, like a splash of scented water. Masque Milano Russian Tea is that sort of fragrance.

Perfumer Julien Rasquinet developed Russian Tea. Its notes include mint, black pepper, raspberry, black tea, magnolia, everlasting flower (also known as immortelle), leather accord, incense, birchwood and labdanum. If you’re thinking this sounds a bit like Annick Goutal Duel, you’re right. Russian Tea might be Duel’s tougher brother, the one who came straight from the stables to lunch…

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Parfums de Nicolai Cuir Cuba Intense ~ fragrance review

Parfums de Nicolaï Cuir Cuba Intense, brand image

Taking into consideration perfumer Patricia de Nicolaï’s description1 (and name) of her new perfume and its notes list2…you might expect Parfums de Nicolaï Cuir Cuba Intense to be the scent equivalent of laying inside a new leather trunk on cushions stuffed with highly scented cured tobacco leaves. In press materials, Nicolaï raves about the aromas of dried tobacco leaf, unlit cigars, and even cigar boxes.

Cuir Cuba Intense is too sophisticated to simply replicate, literally, tobacco and leather aromas; it’s so sophisticated it barely brings them to mind at all…

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Tom Ford Private Blend Tuscan Leather & Acqua di Parma Colonia Leather ~ fragrance reviews

Buffalo bag

Last year I bought a new bag made of American buffalo hide to replace my ancient black calfskin bag that has traveled around the globe with me for ages (and is now retired and ‘resting’ in a cabinet). The moment I held the new bag I felt guilty, for buffaloes are one of my favorite animals. I get excited, and am emotionally moved, to be in the presence of these “beasts” that have always symbolized, for me, the part of the U.S. I love most, the West. Since getting my new bag, I’ve been in two car accidents (only my car was injured) and lost two jobs. Am I cursed? Are the buffalo spirits I’ve always admired pissed off, feeling betrayed — egged on by cows (“He never worries much about US!”) Anyway, I’ve not used the new bag at all; it sits pristine in my closet, encased in a soft wool sweater.

I like leather fragrances as I like amber and tobacco perfumes: I need only ONE specimen of each in my perfume collection.1 Likewise, I need only one leather bag (I like simplicity); testing these two leather perfumes has led me back to my bison bag, whose aroma is still present…

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Hermes Cuir d’Ange ~ fragrance review & quick poll

Hermès Sac à Dépêches

I said when I reviewed Épice Marine that a new fragrance in the upscale Hermessence range from French house Hermès always makes me happy, even when I don’t love the juice. Part of the reason is that they rarely bore me, and another factor is that the relatively easy availability of the 15 ml bottles means I can get some if I want it.1 So the news of the latest (and the 12th in the series), Cuir d’Ange, was welcome, although I find now that every new fragrance from Hermès brings with it a little twinge of anxiety: will it be the last from house perfumer Jean-Claude Ellena? (Please, Mr. Ellena, don’t retire just yet.)

I tend to divide the Hermessences into three categories: the few I don’t care about at all (sorry, Paprika Brasil), the few that I need in 100 ml (Osmanthe Yunnan!), and the rest, which I generally need in 15 ml (Vanille Galante, for instance). Sometimes I’m wrong, of course; I think I’m now on my third 15 ml bottle of Vetiver Tonka and my second of Rose Ikebana, and I’m heading fast towards another bottle of Brin de Réglisse. Cuir d’Ange, for now, is going in the 15 ml category — I’d like to own some but I’m not at all sure I’d run through 100 ml…

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