Etro Heliotrope

Etro’s Heliotrope is one of the more unique florals I’ve encountered and makes me question why it took me so long to try an Etro fragrance to begin with.

Heliotrope

Heliotrope

In Bottle: Rich vanilla and florals. I want to think that heliotrope is the prominent flower, but I’m actually getting more ylang-ylang.

Applied: A bit of almond and powdery heliotrope to start off the scent followed by a mellowing vanilla note that sweetens the fragrance a bit. I get the florals rather quickly, and for some reason ylang-ylang is quite prominent for me. Etro’s Heliotrope smells of powdered vanilla and ylang-ylang. It reminds me of vintage things and powder puffs with delicately scented blooms sitting in a pot of earth nearby. The florals smell natural, the vanilla adds a touch of oriental and smooths the fragrance. It’s overall a very pleasant experience.

Extra: Heliotrope is actually a fairly old release from Etro, having been released in 1989. It certainly explains the different approach to composition.

Design: Bottled rather simply, but still elegantly in a glass bottle with a nicely designed silver cap. It looks luxurious without being over the top and feels great to hold.

Fragrance Family: Oriental Floral

Notes: Bergamot, orange blossom, petitgrain, almond, iris, jasmine, heliotrope, rose, ylang-ylang, balsam, tonka, musk.

Etro is a great niche house with a fairly good representation of fragrances. You can find their stuff on StrawberryNET.

Reviewed in This Post: Heliotrope, 2000, Eau de Toilette.


Annick Goutal Ninfeo Mio

Been a while since I’ve done an Annick Goutal fragrance. I actually really miss the often soft, feminine fragrances available in this line.

Ninfeo Mio

Ninfeo Mio

In Bottle: Citrus and herbal. A very fresh interpretation and very green and leafy smelling. Quite nice and really natural. Doesn’t smell like a perfume, but rather like the concept of a dewy citrus leaf.

Applied: Initial flare of tart citrus the orange and lemon in particular are noticeable. They give the opening a bit of a bite–in a good way. After the opening the fragrance takes on a pleasant fresh herb and green leafy scent with a nice woodsy undercurrent. As the scent ages, the greenness dominates and the woods come up a bit more. To me, this is a very refreshing scent. Almost like droplets of water pooling in a forest after a light shower. It’s quite agreeable and very beautiful.

Extra: Ninfeo Mio was released in 201o, was inspired by the gardens in Rome, and is still widely available.

Design: Bottle like most other Annick Goutal fragrances in a ribbed bottle and tied with a ribbon. Annick Goutal bottles are easily reusable in that you can unscrew the sprayer and refill the bottle. The design is nice and elegant, a little vintage and quite lovely.

Fragrance Family: Aromatic Woodsy

Notes: Citron, lemon, petitgrain, bitter orange, galbanum, lavender, lentisque, fig, wood, musk.

This is one of the herbal fragrances that I really like. I’m not a big fan of herbal scents usually but Ninfeo Mio is a lovely scent.

Reviewed in This Post: Ninfeo Mio, 2011, Eau de Parfum.


Knize Ten

Picked up this classic out of the pile today. I had heard of Knize Ten on various fragrance boards and saw it had a lot of love and praise so I was very excited to see how I’d react to it.

Knize Ten

Knize Ten

In Bottle: Strong leather up top with a mixture of notes that reminds me of motor oil or rubber. I know my fiance, whose love of things that smell like car garages would love this.

Applied: Once again a very heavy leather note up top with a few notes that remind me of rubber or motor oil. Just something really heavy and mechanical. This makes me think ‘masculine’ right away as it has a very strong initial personality. If you keep wearing Knize Ten it mellows out a bit, turning into a soft, plush leather fragrance with a hint of floral to back it up. It’s rich, sophisticated and very complex as all classics tend to be. I love it, but I would probably love it more on a man than myself because I can’t see myself rocking this with the same kind of style due to my penchant for lighter fragrances. Anyway, Knize Ten develops into this fabulous comforting leather. The kind of warm, plus leather you can wrap yourself in. The ‘motor oil’ fades so if you were concerned about that aspect, it did fade for me. Also keep in mind that it is hard to pin point exactly what Knize Ten is aside from a really, really good leather. It’s constantly evolving but remains a very nice comforting, luxurious fragrance. The dry down is marked with a warm amber quality and a hint of balancing patchouli.

Extra: Knize Ten is a classic fragrance from the 1920s and it smells like it too. It’s complex and unlike most modern men’s scents in that it has a fabulous balance of notes. It was composed by Fran├žois Coty and Vincent Roubert.

Design: Fairly simple design choice for this fragrance but it’s a quality-looking fragrance bottle made of quality materials. Feels nice in the hand, has a good weight to it, isn’t awkward to hold or spray and looks simple and tasteful. Overall, a nicely done design.

Fragrance Family: Classic

Notes: Lemon, bergamot, orange, petitgrain, rosemary, geranium, rose, cedar, orris, carnation, cinnamon, orange blossom, sandalwood, leather, musk, moss, patchouli, ambergris, castoreum, vanilla.

Knize Ten is beautiful. I just can’t see myself wearing it, but I can definitely see a man with this fragrance. It’s warm, comforting, and sophisticated at the same time. Not to mention it’s a classic which almost always wins extra points. I’m just not sure how old my sample is.

Reviewed in This Post: Knize Ten, ~2000, Eau de Toilette.


Tauer L’Air du Desert Marocain

L’Air du Desert Marocain has been described as a dry, beautiful oriental that’s reminiscent of a desert breeze. Come on, with a description like that, I had to give her a try.

L'Air du Desert Marocain

L'Air du Desert Marocain

In Bottle: Dry incense with a bit of earthiness and a beautiful hint of woodsiness that comes through this beautifully blended spicy accord.

Applied: Spiciness is up right away with a bit of an incense kick. This isn’t off-putting, too strong and a little bit weird incense. L’Air du Desert Marocain employs a beautiful, clear incense fragrance that’s smoky and classic. It smells like incense should. Delicate but strong at the same time. There’s a bit of floral sweetness that’s balanced out by a smoky bitterness. Sounds like a strange combination but the two, when combined, makes something very pretty. The florals in this help perfume the backdrop to the incense, as well as the woodsy notes and the spices. Everything is so well blended that it’s hard for me to pick out a specific player and I like it that way. The only thing I know is that the incense fragrance in this is awesome.

Extra: Tauer is a niche luxury fragrance house headed by Andy Tauer who not only has his name on these beautiful fragrances, he also composes them. It’s always awesome to see a perfumer heading their own fragrance line.

Design: Bottled in a pentagon-shaped blue glass bottle, L’Air du Desert Marocain looks very luxurious and feels equally luxurious. It has a bit of a lapis lazuli look to it as well. Tauer, however, uses relatively the same bottle design principles for all of their fragrances. Regardless, the bottles are functional and look great.

Fragrance Family: Oriental

Notes: Coriander, petitgrain, lemon, bergamot, jasmine, cistus, bourbon, geranium, cedarwood, vetiver, vanilla, patchouli, ambergris.

Well, L’Air du Desert Marocain lived up to the hype. I really enjoyed this one. As for it making me picture a desert wind–well, I’m not sure about that. It’s definitely dry, it definitely smells good, and it’s definitely got this beautiful classical vibe to it. When you have a perfume that smells so awesome already, I’m not that worried about it living up to its name.

Reviewed in This Post: L’Air du Desert Marocain, 2010, Eau de Toilette.