Friday, April 25, 2008

A Perfume By Another Name . . . Wait, They All Smell the Same

Allow me to continue to geek out on perfumes. I am having a boring streak in perfume sniffing. For the last three days I have worn Flower by Kenzo, Lolita Lempicka, and Chanel's Coco Madamoiselle. Besides from very slightly different floral notes they all smell so boringly similar: sweet saccharine powder with a touch of vanilla or musk.

I think I have narrowed down my stereotypes of perfume, divided by gender:

For Women
Old Lady - aldehydes, e.g. Chanel No. 5
Bombshell- gourmand, sugar, and musk (see above)
Hip Young Thing - lychee, citrus, tea, e.g. L'Occitane's White Tea
Hippie - incense, neroli, patchouli, e.g. Ormond Jayne's Orris Noir

For Men
Cab Driver - MUSK, e.g. too many to specify
Frat Boy/Clubber - aqua notes and pine, e.g. Cool Water, etc.
Old Boy's Club - polished leather, smoke, bourbon, e.g. classic Polo
Cowboy - rugged leather and spice, e.g. Stetson

I got a kick out of the notes in Britney Spears' perfume Fantasy: red lychee, golden quince, kiwi, cupcake accord, jasmine, white chocolate orchid, musk, woods, and orris root. "Cupcake accord" - it doesn't get better than that. And why "red lychee" and "golden quince"? All lychees are red. And quinces are yellow. Period.

I did just send for a sample of Parfum D'Empire's Fougere Bengale, supposed to evoke India under British colonial rule with notes evocative of a tiger hunt: straw, horses, tobacco, musk, etc. Isn't great how we get to romanticize imperialism, now that enough time has passed so people won't be so damn sensitive about it? Bring on the safari hats and gin and tonics!


Anonymous said...

So aside from perfumes, would you be able to tell what kind of people watch what tv show? my co-worker at work who does not know me at all pegged me for a Gray's Anatomy fan. I told him I also watch Lost and he was very surprised and didn't peg me as a Lost person. I was intrigued...What type of person watches Gray's vs. Lost? BTW, my favorite scent as of late is Pink Jasmine by Fresh. Did you smell that one? Talk to you later, Van Thy

marianevans said...

Hi VT :) TV shows are trickier... but, in a pinch, I would say that people who watch Grey's Anatomy want a soap opera that parades around as a drama/medical show - 20's-30's women who also have emotional drama goin' on. Lost is either for intellectuals/philosopher types (and their wanna-be's) who try to weed out every allusion to Locke and Baudrillard, etc. or people who just like a good adventure/mystery. Or, people who like to be led on to think Lost will SOMEDAY provide that. I have given up, personally!

Anonymous said...

And what do you have against G&Ts, pray tell? :)

These perfume posts are both fascinating and incredibly confusing since I've never worn perfume in my life, except when I got married and my aunt insisted on dabbing some thing of hers on me. It smelled OK. Maybe when we have a little more cash I can learn more of these mysteries.

Do you think you could email me your new home address if that isn't a problem? We're about to head out on our road trip and I'd like to know where to send postcards.

- Marian (mysteriously not logged in)

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