Tag Archives: spices

by Kilian Bamboo Harmony

22 May

Bamboo Harmony starts off with promising hints of citrus and sweet floral notes, but rapidly becomes an unexceptional (dusty) powdery floral tea-centered fragrance. I much prefer Water Calligraphy to this, though with Water Calligraphy, the emphasis is on sparkling sunny florals instead of tea, bergamot, and green grassy notes.

After the delightful opening, Bamboo Harmony quickly morphs into a powdery floral, and then the tea really comes out full force, but still cloaked in this powdery floral veil with a hint of ambiguous spice.

The white tea has a somewhat nose-tingling bitter element as if it has been a little over-steeped, and then cooled/muted to make iced tea, so that the notes go a little flat on my skin.

In the dry down, there is a powdery musk and the tea continues to permeate with its subtle yet persistent bite. The dry down is actually quite pleasant and ends as green as they come, but I would not choose this before any other more vibrant and simultaneously gentle (harmonious?) tea fragrances.

This reminds me of the perfume which “hangs” around a strange rich lady who is placidly looking at the same painting as you at a museum. You can tell that she is not friendly and she doesn’t notice you at all, even though you are no more than inches away. She is in her own calm, insulated and isolated world.

Like warm ice.

 

Yves Saint Laurent L’Homme

2 Mar

L’Homme by Yves Saint Laurent is a warm, light, slightly fruity and spicy fragrance. It has a uniform color and temperature, instead of showing off each of its individual notes. It is slightly reminiscent of Om from the Gap.

L’Homme plays nice. It’s spice without leather, tobacco, booze or smoke. It’s clean and contemporary. After the first fifteen minutes, I detect a powdery warmth, like a slightly fruity musk. Projection and longevity are low, which I actually don’t mind in this instance.

L’Homme is walking along a manicured tree-lined path on the campus of a prestigious University. It’s humid but it’s not going to rain. It’s old growth trees without being anywhere near a forest. It’s early Spring in the South. L’Homme is the embodiment of gentle, soft-spoken masculinity. It’s a corduroy jacket and arms full of books.

It is inviting in a casual way, which could turn more sensual at any moment, but doesn’t push the wearer in either direction. It isn’t pushy. It accepts you as you are. Maybe along with the books, L’Homme is also holding an apple.
I’d bite it.

L’Artisan Parfumeur Timbuktu

24 Feb

I have repeatedly attempted to review this fragrance, but have found that it is more challenging to describe than I expected. However, I have finally found enough time to spend with it to write about my experience. Sometimes really beautiful understated and complex fragrances take more time. Do NOT write this one off! Spend some time sampling it so you can see how wonderful it truly is. L Artisan is very understanding about the need to sample.

Timbuktu smells like an early Morning walk while camping, with smoky earthy incense notes which smell like a campfire that has gone out. There is leather, pepper, and wood, but despite the depth of the individual notes, Timbuktu is a dry, light and airy fragrance. Projection and longevity are pretty poor, but I enjoy that it wears close to the skin.

It is an intimate fragrance without being warm, seductive without being too spicy. It makes my skin smell as if I have just returned from somewhere very far away, where there is nothing familiar to cling to.

In its animalic earthiness, I get the feeling of clean dry mud, of drawings made from homemade charcoal on stone, tea made from bark and twigs, and the perfume of fine, parched earth. It is cool dry, exotic smoothness, and becomes subtly intoxicating.

Timbuktu reminds me slightly of Emir by M. Micallef, but Timbuktu is more subdued, muted and airy, the blue/grey and raw umber color of smoke and earth. I feel like I could douse myself with it, and it still wouldn’t project any more than it does with three sprays. As it opens on the skin, the fresh earthiness of vetiver becomes more apparent.

Timbuktu smells magical because of what it contains, but especially because of what it DOESN’T. Each of its elements fit together perfectly, with nothing to distract or over-complicate.

I get the distinct feeling that it is intended as an ingredient in a solution made for self-protection. It is a whispered reminder of one’s own inner strength.

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