As you can probably tell by looking at the photographs in this post, I had quite a bit of fun putting this review together, and fun certainly seems to be a central theme at the heart of the fragrance in question. To me, perfume is not something to be taken too seriously it is, after all, a frivolity – a consumer product to be enjoyed. Some brands get this and Juliette Has a Gun is definitely one fragrance house that certainly knows how to have fun with fragrance. Their collection is served with tongue firmly pressed in cheek and they set out to make fabulous fragrance, yes, but also scents that are for vibrant and complex characters. You’ll either get them or you won’t.
MMMM… is the latest launch from Juliette Has a Gun and, as the name suggests, it’s a delectable gourmand of scent, or as the brand calls it “a zero calorie treat”! This is Juliette Has a Gun and brand creator Romano Ricci really having fun. With MMMM… they have brought us a fragrance that is to be enjoyed guilt-free and in excess, for yourself and for those around you. MMMM… is a gourmand that is vivid and a little bit ridiculous but also hugely luxurious. To me, it feels like the kind of thing you could pick up in Ladurée or Pierre Hermé – a couture treat to be enjoyed with an Ispahan and a steaming hot cup of Marie Antoinette tea. MMMM…
Top: Neroli, Raspberry and Geranium
Heart: Orange Blossom, Jasmine Sambac, Tuberose and Iris Butter
Base: Sandalwood, Patchouli and Salicylate
How Does it Smell?
Omnomnom, that was my first thought when I sprayed MMMM… In fact, this impression was so strong I thought that ‘OMNOMNOM…’ would make a pretty decent name for the fragrance, but it is arguably less catchy than ‘MMMM…’, anyway I digress. The fragrance opens up red, pink and juicy. Raspberry is the first thing to make itself known in all of its fuzzy, fruity glory. Quickly, a bitter almond note, one that has a strong anise character, pops up below to provide some contrast, ensuring that the sugar doesn’t rot away all of the goodness. Instantly, one’s mind thinks of DIOR’s Hypnotic Poison and it would be fair to say that MMMM… takes strong cues from the 1998 classic however, Juliette’s interpretation is much more vibrant and juicy.
The heart is all flowers and powder. Bubblegum-esque tuberose and delicate iris powder swirl together in a veritable cloud of deliciousness, whilst a touch of orange blossom accentuates the gourmand feel, allowing it to be reminiscent of high end Parisian patisserie. I can’t pick out a particular delicacy that this haze represents, because it teeters on the edge of abstract, but all I know is that it feels very edible. Perhaps it’s a light dusting of rainbow-coloured sugar atop a delightful sundae, and served by a unicorn? Yes, that sounds about right and I think I could happily eat two, or three, or ten…
If the the top notes are all juice and the heart the domain of floral sugar, then the base is an ode to vanilla. Now, I love vanilla but it feels like a note that is often abused. Sometimes it’s overused, making a fragrance smell as thick and sweet as cake batter (delicious, yes, but wearable, not so much) or it can be portrayed as too dry, or even shrouded in amber and woods. MMMM… however, feels like it has the right balance, offering up a vanilla that is creamy, sweet, slightly bitter (thanks to the almond and jasmine) and wonderfully transparent. Sandalwood supports the vanilla by emphasising its drier facets and ensuring that the sugar, which wants so much to be in the spotlight, doesn’t take over. The result is a smooth, wispy base of velvety vanilla that is opulent but not oppressive.
It’s difficult not to like MMMM… (I defy anyone to smell it and at least not crack a smile) Yes it’s sweet, fully gourmand and more than just a little bit reminiscent of DIOR’s Hypnotic Poison, but it showcases all of this with a lightness of touch and transparency that makes it just so darn wearable. Also, the pink bottle is to. die. for. As far as fruity gourmands go, MMMM… manages to capture an excess of sugar and juiciness in a manner that is entirely guilt-free. I say, spray on as much as you can, delight in your gourmand aura and watch as everyone within your radius follows you around salivating. MMMM… indeed!
MMMM… is available in 50ml (£76) and 100ml (£99) Eau de Parfum
Sample, notes and quotes via Juliette Has a Gun. Images are my own.