Thierry Mugler’s second major feminine Alien has managed to become almost as popular and iconic as its sister fragrance Angel, which is no mean feat when you consider exactly how popular the latter is. Since its release in 2005 Mugler has released a plethora of Alien Editions, each of which has seemed better than the last, and it would be fair to say that the very latest edition ‘Alien Essence Absolue’ is the best yet, and they know it too hailing Essence Absolue as “The Supreme Perfume”.
What I love about the Thierry Mugler brand is that they are not afraid to experiment, not only with their flagship launches but also with their flankers. They may not always work (see Ice*Men) but they are always interesting and it’s great to see a brand really give a damn about the quality and artistry of all their fragrances. Personally, I didn’t think that Mugler could top the salted-caramel-goodness of Alien Le Goût de Parfum (released last year), but by jove they’ve gone and proved me wrong.
Alien Essence Absolue is the latest interpretation of Alien and serves as an oriental twist on the original. Created by Dominique Ropion (one of favourite perfumers FYI), who worked on the original as well as creating the Eau de Toilette, Eau Luminescente and Sunessence versions, Essence Absolue is a more intense interpretation that focuses on warm, resinous notes and intense flowers. Mugler describes it as “an intense amber, floral, vanilla perfume […] a magnetic fragrance that illuminates the skin in a halo of light” – well if “magnetic” partly explains why my nose is currently stuck to my wrist then I’m all for it.
With so many perfume launches per year and the overwhelming number of niche houses that seem to be popping up all over the place, it stands to reason that one has to give in to the fact that not everything can be tried, and in some cases entire lines must be ignored for the sake of one’s sanity. For me, CB I Hate Perfume was one of these lines that unfortunately fell by the wayside.
I’m not entirely sure why I have ignored CB I Hate Perfume for so long, Christopher Brosius is regarded as somewhat of an industry maverick and his appearance in BBC4’s Perfume documentary last year should have piqued my interest, but instead it had the opposite affect. Instead I couldn’t help but feel that line was just a gimmick hiding behind an eccentric personality – watch me eat my words.
I recently had the opportunity to try the two latest CB I Hate Perfume fragrances (in water perfume concentration); 7 Billion Hearts and M5 Where We Are There Is No Here. The names didn’t fill me with a huge amount of confidence, they again sounded quite gimmicky, but I’m always happy to be proved wrong and despite the names both of these new offerings from CB I Hate Perfume are beautifully unusual.
I chose to review Traversée du Bosphore and Vanille Absolument together because they have something particular in common. In fact, they have lots in common; they are both from L’Artisan Parfumeur, are both part of the ‘Les Voyages Exotiques’ line, were both composed by genius perfumer Bertrand Duchaufour and are both gourmands, but that’s not why I have lumped them together in this review. No, it turns out that the particular thing they have in common is the fact that I’ve been searching for them for a long time.
I believe that my collection of fragrances is like a wardrobe, and just like a wardrobe there are different ‘pieces’ for different occasions. Within your fragrance wardrobe you will have fragrances for work, for going out to dinner, for partying, for summer and for winter. You will also have necessities that no wardrobe is complete without, so with clothing it might be the little black dress or the black t-shirt, and with fragrance it would be the vanilla fragrance or the happy-go-lucky citrus. Us perfume enthusiasts are on a continuous journey to complete our wardrobes and we revel in the joy of finding perfumes that plug any gaps.
Both of these ‘exotic voyages’ have taken me on a journey filled with wonderful discoveries and fragrant epiphanies. I have discovered two perfumes that have each found a prominent place within my collection. In Traversée du Bosphore I found the Turkish Delight fragrance I had been looking for, and in Vanille Absolument I have discovered the vanilla to fill the missing spot within my collection.
Diesel fragrances have always rated as ‘Not bad but Not Great’ on my scale of perfume awesomeness (which runs from Viktor & Rolf Antidote to Guerlain Shalimar BTW). They’ve always been competently put together, pleasant enough fragrances that smell utterly mainstream. This isn’t a bad thing in itself, after all there is nothing wrong with decent smelling mainstream fragrances, but as perfumistas we expect more, don’t we?
Loverdose is the latest feminine release for the Italian brand and it follows Fuel For Life as the second feminine launch since the Diesel fragrance line was completely revamped.
Loverdose is described as follows:
“Loverdose is the sexy & addictive new fragrance from Diesel. It represents a woman who is sexy, playful and irresistible. She receives an overdose of love from those around her, but she wants more. She desires pleasure, adrenaline & passion.”