Thursday, September 24, 2015
still-sound 219. Eau Argentine
I wanted to find a new fragrance for myself on my trip to France. Being a scent-obsessed person, I started considering my options long before my actual departure. I considered Une Rose from Editions de Parfums Frederic Malle. I've always loved this scent and consider it to be the perfect rose perfume. I also wanted to be sure to visit the Frederic Malle boutique in Paris since the images I've seen of it look very stylish. I've been wearing a sample of the scent, test driving it... The reactions have been so-so. "It's smells like rose. It's nice." Nice wasn't particularly what I was going for. And I never made it to the boutique in Paris. There were just too many other seductive retail experiences in that city and I ran out of time.
At the duty free in LAX and Heathrow I tried on the parfum version of Dior Homme. I've never had the original Dior Homme though I like it very much and put it on whenever I'm in a Sephora. I liked the parfum version - it was deeper, richer. I thought I detected a coffee note. I was surprised that by the time I landed in Paris, less than an hour away from Heathrow that Dior Homme Parfum had all but disappeared on my wrist. On the other wrist I sprayed the parfum concentration of Fahrenheit; also very nice but not better than the original version which I already own.
I tried on Cuir d'Ange from the Hermessence line of Hermes. I tend to love the work of Jean Claude Ellena, the perfumer of Hermes. Cuir d'Ange is an excellent leather scent and I admire it enormously, but smells a bit too much like Band Aids on my skin.
In Paris I was thrilled to see that Diptyque has rereleased one of my favorite fragrances that has long been discontinued. Opone is a complex, spicy rose fragrance. I used to wear it in Paris when I lived there. Apparently the new version dials up the black pepper while cutting the cumin note. Honestly it doesn't smell very different to me. I love both versions. The bottle was perfect - cracked glass with a tiny label bearing the name of the perfume and an elegant bakelite cap. The sales assistant at the Marais Diptyque graciously gave me a sample of Opone and I wore it throughout my time in France. I resisted purchasing it though because we'll most likely be getting it at the perfume store where I work and a discount is a discount.
I found my scent at the IUNX boutique of the Hotel Costes. I had high hopes for L'Ether, (an incense scent that gets high praise online) and a new sandalwood fragrance. It was Eau Argentine that captured my imagination in the end. The sales assistant referred to it as a tea scent, mate in particular. I smelled tonka bean - the beautiful scent of freshly mown hay. I asked if there was tonka, she said 'Non. C'est mate'. The bottle lists coumarin however (ie. tonka bean). Duh.
The drydown of Eau Argentine goes into a creamy fig tree with crisp autumn leaves, not wildly different than Diptyque's Philosykos (designed by the same perfumer in fact, Olivia Giacobetti) yet it stays a tonka bean fragrance rather than a fig fragrance. I compared it to the new Feve Delicieuse from Dior which begins in a similar way to Eau Argentine though the drydown of the former becomes a pure vanilla.
The IUNX bottle is massive and long. It comes in a protective black foam case. I didn't spray it on until I came home to Los Angeles where I could photograph it in its pristine state. I reorganized my entire fragrance collection in my closet so that it could sit in a prime spot.