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The musty sweetness of withered roses on mourning wreaths
Paris from YSL is a fragrance that always asks me a question: What does the French capital - and of course the French women in particular - have to do with this perfume by Yves Saint Laurent?
I know Paris. Not very good. The way you get to know the city as a guest. I visited Paris in August, the month in which the locals, if they can afford it, flee the metropolis and leave it to the tourists.
After all. In the parks and gardens it bloomed - in the most beautiful colours of summer. There were roses, too. The Jardin du Luxembourg, the Tuileries, the Jardin Anne-Frank and above all the Roseraie du Parc de Bagatelle.
I imagine that Yves Saint Laurent went for a walk there in the early 1980s and was inspired to create his perfume by the lush Damascene roses, tea roses or pale pink bourbon roses that once bloomed in Josephine's Malmaison
That's a naive notion, of course. The perfumer of the fragrance is the Russian Sophia Grojsman, who created fragrances like Eternity, Beautiful and Trésor. But maybe she sat in the rose gardens of Paris and enjoyed her scents.
Paris is known as "the scent of roses". That was also the reason why I was interested in this eau de toilette. I love the smell of roses.
The characteristic bottle made of cut glass with its black and pink cap immediately appealed to me
The fragrance starts very sweet immediately after spraying on, almost too sweet for me. I don't notice much of the citric bergamot. Green notes, on the other hand, are clearly present at the beginning. Flowers also mix in very soon. The rose is present from the beginning and remains so. In the heart note, the fragrance begins to become slightly powdery. The cheerful sounds of green and bergamot have now completely disappeared. The EdT doesn't offer any freshness anymore, only a heavy, almost honey-like sweetness, which is reinforced by sandalwood. In addition, heavyweights such as amber and musk are also driven up to the point of waving.
Paris - I mean perfume - convinced me at the time, which I can no longer understand today. I bought the Eau de Toilette Spray and liked to use it during summer time.
YSL calls the fragrance seductive. It should stand for elegant, cheerful ladies with exquisite taste. The perfume is described as romantic, very feminine and delicate.
There are of course reasons why I still have a half-filled bottle of it. Somehow I liked the scent a lot more in the old days. Today I find it too sweet, too heavy - even as an eau de toilette - and also, yes, somehow old-fashioned.
It's the scent experience you might have when you find an old chest in the attic, open it and find the yellowed bridal veil of your great-great-grandmother in it, in which a perfume from the old days has settled.
I would like the roses to smell fresher and the whole fragrance to be lighter, more sparkling and not so dark and austere. But in fact he has a velvety heaviness that is almost melancholic for me. I don't notice the promised cheerfulness. At best, I can imagine that an attractive, well-groomed lady in black with red lacquered fingernails would wear him to her husband's funeral.
I like powdery scents. But here I encounter dusty pathos rather than a cheerful rose powder scent.
Today I can no longer see what I once liked about this fragrance. At the moment I can't identify with him and apart from funerals I would hardly know an occasion where I would wear him.
Romantic? No. Seductive? Especially not. Feminine? At best, if they're older ladies. You need a certain personality to be able to wear this dominant fragrance at least in the evening without being crushed by it. Sillage and durability are here for an eau de toilette almost incredibly intense!
In my opinion, however, this heavy-blooded scent has nothing to do with the lively cosmopolitan city on the Seine, the city of love and artists. She would have deserved a better or more fitting creation. Something light, floral, with charm and esprit, refined, but graceful and sweet.
But Paris, the scent, has none of this at all.
In Vienna, we have a White Woman who's been bypassing the Hofburg. Supposedly it is about Kunigunde, the unhappy widow Premysil Ottokar II, king of Bohemia, who was defeated and fell in 1278 in the battle on the Marchfeld by Rudolf I of Habsburg. Rudolf then exhibited the corpse of the unlucky king in Vienna for 30 weeks.
The queen's restless spirit is not welcome. Why don't you announce her appearance as a certain calamity? Fortunately, I've never met her before. Should I ever, however, I am sure to recognize her perfume immediately: this morbid scent of withered roses on mourning wreaths, this mouldy, heavy sweetness ..