Loud strawberry freezer pop, from the concessions kiosk at the middle school dance. Artificial sweetened berry pulp with nuances of scented doll, and sassy caramel licorice on the bottom. Fun, but could be overwhelming during a slow dance.
This was the dance anthem when I was in junior high…
TokyoMilk No. 4 lists “Crisp Apples, Peaches, Violets, Roses” on the bottle, which adds up oddly to fruity jelly slices, but the cheap kind, that taste a bit plasticky under the sugar.
Then we go to the spa, where powdery cosmetic florals puff up and take over, soapy enough to strip away the gourmand sweetness, floating within social distance all day, like a hair product from getting done at the salon, that you can’t escape.
Weird and a little headache inducing.
The perfume was actually named after this song. Here’s a weird version, but with less headache.
The Jasmine variant is actually less enjoyable than theRoseof 4711’s Floral Collection.
Here, jasmine and tea take the place of the fruit in the original, drying it up, with a bit of tonka at the bottom to give back a some sweetness. But instead of making the iconic herbal neroli creamy, the jasmine turns it waxy, and everything becomes a big box Crayola crayons, melting in the sun.
Lasts a half hour with big inescapable greasy trails, then fades to a smudge of paraffin on the skin. Normally I’d find a household use for a cologne I wouldn’t wear, but this one doesn’t even smell clean.
Stardeath and the White Dwarfs is a cool experimental band out of Oklahoma.
Starts with big creamy-yet-spicy florals, a hit of 80’s soapy peaches and a squirt of 70’s disco rose pee, then gets powdery with late 90’s iris. Finishes up with a light sunny musk that’s brilliant on scarves.
For the woman who celebrates her laugh lines.
A melancholy sun. She sang this tribute five days after Chris Cornell’s death.
“Nice flowers,” she said, batting her lashes. “Juicy, too.” “Rosy citrus,” came the reply, with a knowing smile. “A sweet bottom, too,” she teased back. She didn’t bring up the feminine wood–they were already gone.
Flirtatious, but not much more. Stays at elbow length for an hour, then fades to the skin for another two.
I get sheer honey at first sniff, with a tobacco and pink pepper dissonance that is probably the ginger fighting with the citrus. They duke it out, but the jasmine swoops in and wins, creamy florals thickening the honey and lifting it two feet off the wrist for half the day. There’s a shard of woody amber close to the skin, that cuts through the syrup and keeps it from being too cloying.
Nice, but over-refined. I’m aware of the chemicals, and honey should be raw, y’know? TokyoMilk Honey & the Moon is wilder, with twice the sillage and longevity, in the same price range.
Love Tuberose is a huge ice cream cake cuddle of a scent, and became my favorite comfort fragrance at first sniff.
Starts with a bouquet of white flowers sculpted from sugar paste, with milky sweet notes that slide tropical and faintly fruity–I get a breath of apricot that is most likely me imagining things–so pretty and feminine and uplifting. A half hour later the fun happens. Puffs of whipped vanilla rise from the tuberose, with the creamy lightness you’d expect from jasmine, but they’re pure bubblegum, flirty sass with a hint of powder–if a scent could sound like laughter, this one does. The sandalwood on the bottom keeps it from being too young and giggly. The wood notes are a support for the flowers, giving them strength without taking over, and are more apparent on cotton than silk.
Lasts a good three hours in personal space, then sleeps on the skin with a smile.
All Amouage perfumes are expensive–high end top-shelf bottles with quality ingredients and master blending–but for me, this one is a self-care mood-lifting therapy session with each spray, and worth the cost of a big bottle.
I love the opening–green citrus with good rasp of nutmeg, and a nice hit of pot funk–but in 15 minutes Hierba Nera (Black Grass) slides into smoky amber resins with lazy projection. The base notes of miscellaneous wood musks last half the day on the skin, with no residue on cotton.
Leans to the oak-y end of unisex.
If the top notes took center stage, I’d be all up in a bottle–the art-house basement party vibe is delightful–but the high doesn’t last long enough to warrant the cost.