Alexander McQueen’s perfume line was both infamous and short lived. Perhaps better known for the erotically charged skank-bomb Kingdom than its other offerings, McQueen’s perfumes were nowhere near as successful as they were artistic or ultimately as they deserved to be.
Following in the same vein as his fashion output McQueen’s first perfume Kingdom was a renegade scent created to shock, however the second and final perfume from the brand – MyQueen – was something entirely different, opting to reference the subtle intricacies of the designer’s sculptural tailoring rather than courting the realms of controversy.
Created in 2005 by perfumers Anne Flipo (Ananas Fizz, La Chasse aux Papillons & Donna Karan Woman) and Dominique Ropion (Carnal Flower, Alien & Portrait of a Lady) MyQueen was created to represent the McQueen woman – “a vision of the woman of his (McQueen’s) dreams” – with the kaleidoscopic bottle representing not only the many facets of this woman but also McQueen’s love for antique glass.
Top: Parma Violet and Sweet Almond
Heart: Orange Blossom, White Flowers, Heliotrope and White Musk
Base: Iris, Patchouli, Vanilla, Vetiver and Cedar
How Does it Smell?
It is pretty much a guarantee that your first thought upon applying MyQueen is “gee this smells just like those parma violet sweets” and that’s all it is about for the first five minutes or so – sweet violets and sugar fizz. But there is something much deeper, something much darker lurking beneath MyQueen’s surface that unfurls slowly over time.
In a seamless transition the opening violet cacophony is followed by sweet almonds and vanilla, both of which, along with a generous dash of orange blossom, plush things up a bit and take MyQueen from being thin and airy to something almost full-bodied with dreamy, erotic tones that give the impression that McQueen’s queen is a thoroughly sexual beast.
The darkness truly reveals itself in MyQueen’s latter stages where patchouli and cedar reign supreme. Both notes cut through the plush, velvety-ness of the vanilla and the sweetness of the almond, dropping large hints of earth and spice. The tiniest touch of vetiver serves as a jagged contrast from the overall theme of softness, reminding the wearer that a McQueen composition wouldn’t be a McQueen without something a little jarring and shocking.
MyQueen isn’t as quite as fierce and strong as the (rather striking) advertising image would suggest, but it is suitably McQueen in the sense that it shares his almost obsessive attention to detail in addition to being both erotically charge and awash with romanticism – it is by no means a shrinking violet.
Why Was it Discontinued?
After the commercial (and in many cases – critical) flop of Kingdom the pressure was on McQueen to have an olfactory success and unfortunately MyQueen wasn’t a hit with consumers. Perhaps it felt a little too old fashioned, after all violets have never been the flower du jour, or perhaps it just wasn’t renegade enough for such a savage house.
Whatever the reason MyQueen was the last perfume to be released in the brand and could quite easily be considered as the nail in the olfactory coffin for Parfums Alexander McQueen.
MyQueen, the Eau de Parfum (not to be confused with the EDT or ‘Light Mist’), can be found in 50ml and 100ml sizes on most online discounters for very reasonable prices. If only Kingdom were so cheap…
Image 1 linhperfume.com (edited). Image 2 lemonto.wordpress.com. Notes and quotes via Fragrantica.