Fragrance

By Michelyn Camen

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We’ll admit freely that we were a bit leery when we learned that Chanel was reformulating its iconic No. 5 After all, it’s been a beloved (perhaps the most beloved) signature scent since 1921, and has a devoted and fashionable following. I mean, according to Marilyn Monroe, Chanel No. 5 is all she wore to bed.

Remember the marketing disaster that was New Coke Vs. Coke Classic? Well, you can all breathe a collective sigh of relief. Chanel No. 5 Eau Premiere is an evolution of the timeless classic ; an incarnation from master perfumer Jacques Polge that highlights soft top notes of Ylang-Ylang from the Comoro Islands and jasmine from flower fields owned by CHANEL in Grasse, France. Eau Premiere seems more modern, just as seductive and and as sophisticated as the great original.

Available at www.chanel.com

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Fragrance lovers this side of the Atlantic anxiously await ANY arrival of export fragrances by master perfumer Serge Lutens. This time out, Monsieur Lutens found inspiration in a very unlikely source – the wild she-wolf, (en Francais) La Louve. Louve is comprised of bitter almonds offset by dreamy fruity and floral accents of rose and jasmine petals, and a powdery musk and vanilla drydown. The result- a lovely smooth, comfort scent…not quite a she-wolf; more like a cuddly cub.

Available at Barney’s.

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In general, I am not a fan of florals. However, on occasion, there are exceptions. This month, one is Jo Malone’s Wild Jasmine and Mint. Its all in the top notes – Mint Accord, Bergamot, Chamomile, Cardamom, Coriander, and Cassis, which temper the floral notes of Ylang Ylang, Jasmine, Muguet and Rose de Mai Absolute. Bottom notes of musk, Guaiac Wood, Cedar Wood, Vetiver and Mate Absolute add an exotic nutty drydown. Never say never again!

Available at Bergdorf Goodman, select Saks and Neiman Marcus stores.

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Prada doesn’t mess around when they introduce a new scent. Their latest is Infusion D’Iris, a floral woody fragrance is another floral that captivated us this month. Infusion D’Iris is fresh and intimate, clean and sensual. It mixes the elegance of orange blossom with the aristocratic luxury of Iris Pallida from Florence, and the warmer woody and sensual accords of cedar and neroli. Infusion D’Iris EDP is available at www.neimanmarcus.com and includes a large array of like-scented body, home and lifestyle products. Like the fashionable lifestyle that inspires the House that Miuccia built, its all about the collection.

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Mark Badgley and James Mischka have made their mark on the fashion world, with their amazing designs gracing the lithe figures of A-List celebrities (including Teri Hatcher and Sharon Stone). Since new owners Iconix Brand Group invested heavily into their brand, they’ve found themselves adored in the fragrance industry as well. Their first eponymous scent was lovely, but its their second fragrance, Badgley Mischka’s Fleurs de Nuit, that may be destined to become a classic. Inspired by “a Moon Garden lush with white florals and silver foliage”; white florals dominate: magnolia, quince blossom, Chinese peony and night blooming jasmine. This is a fragrance we can imagine Daisy Buchanan wearing in F. Scott Fitzgerald’s classic, The Great Gatsby. P.S. We love the bottle.

Available at Neiman Marcus and Saks Fifth Avenue.

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From the fabulous British stockist Space NK, (recently opened in New York’s Soho), debuts a dramatic new fragrance (violins please) …Melodrama. This fragrance is NOT for the timid or those who love “skin scents”. Melodrama leaves you and everyone you slink by spinning; it’s a heady blend of bergamot, lavender, heliotrope, gardenia, patchouli and vetiver.

Available at www.spacenk.com

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(“Les 4 Vents”: Neroli, Cedre, Iris, Myrtle)

The new Eau de Parfum Collection “Les 4 Vents” (the four winds) from L’Occitane pays homage to the beautiful natural treasures of the Mediterranean, revealed through four different themes: Corsican Myrtle, Tuscan Iris, Tunisian Neroli and Atlas Cedre. Our favorite? The opulent sensuality of Neroli; blended with lychee, plum, sandalwood, and benzoin.

Available at L’Occitane boutiques nationwide.

Originally published October 2007
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