Arquiste Ella ~ fragrance review

Arquiste Ella brand image

Following Kevin’s review of Arquiste Él, I’m here to report on its feminine counterpart, Ella. Like Él, Ella was inspired by Acapulco in the 1970s and was developed by perfumer Rodrigo Flores-Roux. It was designed to evoke “a sultry night of disco, plunging necklines and champagne-soaked skin” followed by a rendezvous on a “golden beach, under a silvery moon,” with notes of cannonball tree flower (curupita), angelica root, carrot seed, rose, jasmine, cardamom, buckwheat honey, amber, patchouli, civet, vetiver, cigarette smoke accord and “chypre accord.”

I’ve never been anywhere near Acapulco, and I don’t think I’ve ever worn a “plunging neckline,” but I do have some very early memories of the 1970s (in New Jersey and New York, anyway). And Ella brought me right back to those days: it reminds me of the fragrances that women — glamorous grown-ups! — were wearing before the mid-80s arrived and everyone began dousing themselves in Poison and Giorgio…

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Arquiste El ~ fragrance review

Arquiste Él brand image

Arquiste Él’s1 backstory is based in 1970’s Acapulco, at Armando’s Le Club:

Nighttime at Acapulco’s sultriest disco. Revelry on the dance floor. In the heat of the moment, he smiles coyly and motions to the beach outside, hinting at a midnight swim. He unbuttons his shirt, flashing bronzed skin and the scent of his cologne, a virile muskiness loaded with patchouli, oak moss and elegant woody notes. A masculine impression of a day under the sun, intensified by the thrill of the night.

If a guy started undressing in a club after motioning to the beach…it would give me pause…

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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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The splitmeet, episode 6


The splitmeet (episode 6) is open for business. PLEASE read the instructions! For people who would like to chat in addition to, or instead of, splitting, there will be a poll along shortly.

Don’t know what a bottle split is, or you know but you’ve never tried it? See here.

Please note that the intention of the splitmeet is to split newly purchased bottles of perfume, not to sell decants of fragrances already in your collection! Anyone can join a split, but only people with current, active reader accounts may host splits. Update: in other words, you cannot host a split if you have never commented here before the day the splitmeet opens.

Our next swapmeet will be in October, followed by a freebiemeet in January.

Update: I’ve raised the number of splits you can host from 4 to 5…

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Flower by Kenzo L’Elixir ~ perfume review & quick poll

Flower by Kenzo L'Elixir brand image

Kenzo launched Flower by Kenzo L’Elixir last year, and I preceded to pretty much ignore it. I did like a few of the earlier Flower flankers (Flower Oriental is my favorite of what I’ve tried so far, followed by Winter Flowers) but hours are few and perfumes, to say nothing of flankers, are many: you all know how that goes. But recently someone said in the scent-of-the-day that the Elixir was good, so I gave it a shot.

This one was developed to celebrate Flower’s 15th anniversary, and it’s billed as a “sophisticated gourmand floral”. If you took that to mean “fruity sugar bomb with a few rose petals”, you’d be right on the money…

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