Rose, c’est la vie

This marks my second—and final—week wearing a different rose perfume each day leading up to Valentine’s Day.

It took me so long to get here but here I am
(It took me so long I can’t believe it)
It took me so long to get here but here I am

—KT Tunstall, “It Took Me So Long to Get Here, but Here I Am”
Greeting card from someone who knows me well!

Tuesday, Feb. 8: Ormonde Jayne Ta’if—Knowing this is one of Undina‘s top favorites, I don’t think I could describe it well enough to do it justice. I requested a sample with purchase from Luckyscent and also found it gorgeous, a warm rose with spices (saffron and pink pepper) and white flowers giving it depth and volume. It reminded me a bit of Rose Gold, also by Ormonde Jayne, but instead of being glassy and somewhat aloof, Ta’if is a close companion, wafting its luscious and reassuring fragrance at me throughout the day.

Wednesday, Feb. 9: Hermès Galop d’Hermès—I could almost say “I bought this for the bottle,” but that would be facetious. I love rose and leather, and this one is done with a light touch. It was much fruitier than I remembered from trying it at the store, courtesy of a quince note that I need to train myself to recognize. The fruity rose is warmed by saffron and complemented by osmanthus, which I couldn’t distinguish on its own here. Later, on fabric, it smells like I have just pulled my shirt out of a fine leather bag.

Thursday, Feb. 10: Hermès Hermessence Rose Ikebana—I received this as a sample when I bought Galop; it’s another beautiful, light rose with orange and lemon notes, making it uplifting like a cool ray of sunshine. Tea, blackcurrant, and rhubarb notes are also listed, which seem to color in the rose and give it interesting dimension. In some moments, it borders on sultry; in others, it smells like fresh laundry. In all moments, effortlessly poised and elegant.

Friday, Feb. 11: Fragrance Du Bois New York 5th Avenue—This was a sample included in my ScentXplore 2021 goodie bag. The opening reminded me of a luxury department store, with spices and a bright, soapy rose, which soon turns a much darker shade with the aid of cypriol and a note just like honey, although caramel is listed instead. It dries down to a powdery amber.

Saturday, Feb. 12: Givenchy Rêve d’Escapade—The weather has turned unseasonably warm for a couple of days and this fruity-floral rose is just the ticket. Top notes listed are peach and massoia wood, which makes me think gamma undecalactone and massoia lactone respectively. However, to my surprise, the perfume doesn’t smell lactonic to me, although I wouldn’t argue with “creamy floral” as a descriptor. It’s such a well blended, pretty, woody floral that makes me almost believe spring is here.

Sunday, Feb. 13: Nomenclature holy_wood—It’s snowing again; the “fool’s spring” didn’t last long. holy_wood is a dubious rose, as it’s built to feature the ingredient Clearwood®, a white biotechnology incarnation of patchouli. I bought my bottle after one sniff on a visit to Aedes de Venustas in New York City a few years ago—I was on a quest to smell shi_sõ but it turned out to be a pale mint and nothing like my beloved herb, shiso. My nose was very much drawn to rose-patchouli “neo-chypres” in those early days of my perfume obsession without realizing yet what they were. holy_wood reminds me of my memory of L’Artisan Parfumeur Voleur de Roses, a rose-patchouli containing no real rose. Medicinal opening making way for fusty woods, with a cool, almost metallic ghost of a rose looking on with nonchalance.

Monday, Feb. 14: Frédéric Malle Portrait of a Lady—My mini of this cult classic has been my Valentine’s Day fragrance for the last couple of years, although the patchouli seems to be competing for attention with the spicy rose brightened by raspberry and blackcurrant. If you look closely at a bouquet of roses, doesn’t it have almost as much volume by way of green leaves?!

It’s been fun wearing—and documenting—a different perfume every day this year without repeating any so far, for a total of 45 days. I’m now ready to take a break and wear whatever strikes my fancy any given day, including repeats!

Hope you all had a lovely day.

5 thoughts on “Rose, c’est la vie

  1. What a great card! Now I want to find it. I think, a greeting card lemming is a first for me 🙂

    In addition to my main favorite Ta’if, you wrote two more favorites of mine – PoaL and Rose Ikebana.

    I wore rose perfumes many days in February, but it was such a busy month so far that on more than one day I just didn’t have time to put on anything :(. But I’ll do more roses until the end of the month.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Wow, I didn’t know cards could achieve lemming status! Well, if it helps, it’s by Hallmark (shoebox) and wasn’t actually a Valentine’s Day card. So I would imagine it’s find-able in Target or Walmart or similar stores.

      Hope your schedule calms down soon, so you can stop and smell the rose… perfumes!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. What discipline! Well done 👏

    I’ve spent just 7 days on a Valentine’s synch & found the planning & wearing intrusive. I have to admit there are days I need to give my nose a rest.
    Do you have those days?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks! I will admit that forcing myself to write something about each perfume was good training but felt like work sometimes. Some days my brain would like the luxury of just letting my nose smell things without having to describe them!


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