Galop d’Hermes ~ perfume review

Galop d'Hermès brand image

It would not really be accurate to say I was worried about what perfumer Christine Nagel would do when she took over as house perfumer at Hermès. Plenty of other things keep me up at night, but not that. But certainly I wondered if Hermès would continue to take the bulk of my perfume-spending dollars, or if I’d have to find a new BFF brand to empty my wallet every so often. What I think of as the transitional fragrance duo — Eau de Rhubarbe Écarlate and Eau de Néroli Doré — that marked the passing of the baton from perfumer Jean-Claude Ellena,1 added to the uncertainty, given that I lost interest in Nagel’s Rhubarbe Écarlate within 30 minutes but fairly quickly bought a small bottle of Ellena’s Néroli Doré (and I’m still sorely tempted by the matching body products).

But perhaps I was too quick to judge. Nagel’s first pillar outing, Galop d’Hermès, is darned good, and while it makes its own way, it also eases comfortably into the brand’s existing line up…

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Parfum d’Empire Cuir Ottoman ~ fragrance review

 Sultan Suleiman I taking control of Moldova

When I hear that something is a leather fragrance, almost always my first thought is, what kind? Leathers can be as oily and potent as a motorcycle gang’s garage hangout, or tender and soft as a well-used chamois. They can be salty or sweet. Sometimes the leather blends so well with the rest of the fragrance that it’s barely discernible, and sometimes it wallops you straight from the bottle.

Parfum d’Empire Cuir Ottoman is a rich, comfortable leather with a soft but durable texture. If it were a leather article, it would be a saddle leather handbag you buy for its practicality, not glamour — despite how expensive it is — then wear so often that it becomes a part of you…

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Eris Parfums Ma Bete, Belle de Jour & Night Flower ~ fragrance review

Eris Parfums Belle de Jour, Night Flower and Ma Bête

Barbara Herman named her new perfume house Eris Parfums after the Greek goddess of war and strife. Herman draws our attention away from war and toward a story where Eris, banned from a party, tosses in a golden apple with the words on it, “Who’s the fairest”? As Herman says, “I love the idea of a party-crashing, trouble-making Greek goddess who inspires creativity and subversion!”

When asked about influences for Eris Parfums, she references the “emotional effect vintage animalic fragrances like Robert Piguet’s Baghari, Lanvin’s Rumeur and Chanel’s Cuir de Russie” had on her. “It was the voluptuous, sensuous, 3D and emotional aspect of these fragrances that compelled me,” she says. “They smelled good but their impact went beyond that. It was that extra impact of animalics I wanted to return to perfume.”

Perfumer Antoine Lie developed Eris Parfums’s first three fragrances…

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Oriza L. Legrand Cuir de L’Aigle Russe ~ fragrance review

Oriza L. Legrand Cuir de L'Aigle Russe label

Oriza L. Legrand’s latest perfume has a strange name — Cuir de L’Aigle Russe.1 No, this is not the scent of a ‘Russian’ eagle’s tanned skin…I assume we’re in “Royal Leather” territory. Oriza L. Legrand is one of my favorite new fragrance houses of the last several years. So many of their perfumes are on my to-buy list that I’m paralyzed with indecision and will probably buy none. After my first sniff of it, Cuir de L’Aigle Russe also went on this weird active-but-inactive to-buy list.

Cuir de L’Aigle Russe begins with a dry lemon-bergamot accord; I detect fuzzy geranium leaf with a hint of rose, warm immortelle snuggling with cardamom and a burst of non-species-specific floral indoles…

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