Say what you will, but I'm a gal who can really appreciate a good vetiver frag. Atelier Cologne was off my radar until only recently, when I acquired the limited edition purse spray set of their first seven creations (available only at Sephora) and then was sent samples of both VETIVER FATAL and ROSE ANONYME by the house itself the very same week. I believe that I received the samples for signing up at Cafleurebon in response to a feature on this house. In any case, the stars all aligned now, shining down upon me with a bright clarion message: Clearly, it's time to give this house's wares a sniff, and now more than ever, given that a few reviewers have compared VETIVER FATAL to Byredo BAL D'AFRIQUE, which I only just tested today.
The moment I donned VETIVER FATAL, I was impressed. It smells very natural and with the perfect amount of vetiver mixed in with a variety of other notes, none of which appears to be iso-E-super! Miracle of all miracles. Or is it that most current men's fragrances contain so much iso-E-super, that my poor nose is unable to discern anything else? All I know is that, if there are such aromachemicals in this composition (and I presume that there are...), they are applied judiciously with the result that it comes off smelling much better than most of the men's colognes I've smelled of late.
I prefer VETIVER FATAL to both BAL D'AFRIQUE and Hermessence VETIVER TONKA because it is a touch less sweet and has a bit more vetiver. This creation really seems like vetiver is the centerpiece, although calling it "fatal" is probably going too far. It's definitely not vetiver overkill. No, it's just the right amount of vetiver and one step back from BAL D'AFRIQUE and VETIVER TONKA in sweetness, bringing it a smidgeon closer to (though still at a distance from) Prada INFUSION DE VETIVER.
I honestly believe that all of these vetiver creations are 100% unisex and should be marketed as such. This does not smell masculine to me at all--it just smells very good. Yum. I could see buying the large bottle of this one. I was wondering why the fragrances of this house, strangely named Atelier Cologne--with all that that implies--appear to come in only two sizes: 30 ml or 200 ml. This is the sort of fragrance which I could see myself applying quite liberally, so the 30 ml bottle would not be a good idea in my case. Maybe those little bottles exist as extended testers? Well, in any case I am now very interested in working through my purse sprays of the original seven fragrances from this house. If the quality is this high, I'll be adding some of these to my collection at some point. In fact, VETIVER FATAL is already on my wish list. Bravo!