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M. Micallef Royal Vintage

13 May

When testing fragrances with my boyfriend I often refer to them as things that help me contextualize them for both of us, and when I tested M. Micallef’s Royal Vintage, I kept referring to it as, that Aventus one. They are definitely not the same scent, but similar enough that my familiarity with Aventus makes me automatically associate the two fragrances.

For those who are not familiar with either, they are both warm, spicy, woody fragrances rounded out by some acidic fruits with a kind of smoky pineapple quality. However, They are not so similar that one can replace the other, and I feel that each is deserving of individual consideration, even if they are close cousins. To make a designer/female analogy, if that would be helpful to anyone, they are about as similar as Kenzo Amour and Dior Hypnotic Poison are to one another.

If ever leather could be refreshing, this fragrance is a perfect example. Bergamot peel, spicy woodsy notes and smoky sweet fruitiness all revolve around a clean light leather.

This would be a great summer evening vacation scent. It is soothing and romantic, with a very casual facet.

This fragrance is incredibly well rounded and balanced. It smells tropical, masculine, and expensive. Projection and longevity are excellent so apply carefully. It actually has the lasting power of indelible ink, on me it stayed THROUGH a shower, so make sure you’re definitely in the mood to wear it! If you enjoy spicy, warm, complex masculine citrus frags and aren’t adverse to a nicely blended leather, give this one a shot.

If I woke up next to a man who smelled from Royal Vintage, I would be like, “AAAAAA!! WHAT DID YOU DO WITH MY BOYFRIEND!?”
But then I would take a deep breath of his Aventus, er, I mean Royal Vintage, sigh, and think to myself,

“Mhm. Everything’s gonna be alright.”

the fur coat

M. Micallef Ananda

21 Feb

Ananda begins with the soft perfumed fruit scent of a babysitter’s hair.

It is an inoffensive though synthetic impression of pear and it is soft, very delicate, and feminine. It is sugary sweet, powdery and tart with citrus and currant. There is nothing remotely visceral about it as with other pears that have a pulpy, over-ripe pungency to them. This is a young innocent woman wearing pear in a gently lit children’s room.

The rose makes this fragrance slightly green, but as the fragrance wears on, the vanilla musk/mimosa in the base takes a gentle powdery control over the tart green notes, and only the synthetic silhouette of the pear lingers. Despite the sweetness, the soft delicacy of the dry down ensures that this fragrance never becomes cloying, if applied with reasonable discrimination.

Though it eventually turns into quite an easy and soothing skin scent, there is nothing overtly memorable in the conclusion to Ananda. The babysitter is warm, pleasant, and comforting, but in a few years you will forget her name, her face, and even the scent of her hair.

M. Micallef Emir

21 Feb

Thank you MM for the lovely samples.

So far, Emir is my favorite offering from the MM Exclusif collection. Though it is unquestionably a dark earthy and sensual fragrance, it reminds me of a cleaner, lighter, and more accessible relative of Puredistance M, by Puredistance.

Puredistance M has longevity that is beyond comprehension, whereas Emir lasts as long as you would want to smell from it (which for me is all day and into the night, instead of several days). The sillage is good and a little goes a long way, especially in warmer or humid climates.

Emir opens with peppery geranium and leather. Soon after, the patchouli and citrus appear, with cedar following close behind.

As the fragrance continues to open up, the cedar becomes quite prominent. The ceder/patchouli/oud combination smells pungent, rich, and quite earthy. There is something mysterious and also visceral about Emir.

It has an animalic,spicy,smokiness to it. It is complex and seductive like a firm masculine embrace. Though it is very masculine in nature, I have no reservations about wearing it myself, since I wear whatever I enjoy, regardless of its masculine/feminine leanings.

Emir is at once alluring and affirming. It’s like walking confidently into complete darkness without a flashlight or the slightest trace of fear.

It’s intertwining yourself with another person as you share heat in the dead of Winter, under a thick heavy blanket. Your breathing synchronizes in the darkness as sleep moves in and takes both of you in silence.

M. Micallef Mon Parfum

21 Feb

Though this fragrance is appropriate for a wide range of occasions, I do think this would be an excellent fragrance for comforting someone who is having a bad hallucination.

Mon Parfum by Martine Micallef opens with sweet orange fuzz. It smells clean in the way that orange candy smells clean. Though orange is listed in the top notes with passion fruit in the heart, I cannot detect much tartness or acidity in Mon Parfum, and I cannot really detect the passion fruit at all, which is fine with me. It is a perfectly balanced gourmand floral.

Almost immediately, the patchouli and vetiver show up to anchor MP and lend it some depth, ensuring that the orange candy cloud won’t envelop me or drift away.

I find Mon Parfum to be incredibly satisfying. Of the four different samples MM was kind enough to give me, this one is my favorite, after the dark and mysterious Emir.

MP is like taking a walk in light fresh snow when you are wearing just the right amount of layers, with occasional hints of moist, nectar-like sweetness drifting up to your nose from the warmth of your scarf.

While I wouldn’t give it high marks for true to life- smelling notes, I have nothing against synthetic elements (if done tastefully without bitter chemical “aftertaste”). MP never jabs me with any faintly off-putting chemical notes not intended to be part of its personality. When composing a gourmand floral, I think the chemical aftertaste factor is one of the biggest risks, and Mon Parfum succeeds in avoiding it.

Its composition is fluid and seamless, never coming close to cloying. It has moderate sillage and good longevity, and is a light scent, but not really a delicate one. It proclaims: I am happy, just as I am.
Now, say it with me: “I AM HAPPY, JUS-….”

In the dry down, I am left with a sweet, clean musk that is reminiscent of the dry down in MM’s Ananda, though where Ananda’s pear-centered fruit opening and formulaic dry down does not leave much of an impression on me overall, Mon Parfum makes me want to reach for it again and again in order to relive that uplifting, fuzzy sweet orange progression.

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