Leathery With A Salty Taste
First, this year, ZARA continued the collaboration with Joe Malone and launched a new Ocean collection with three Eau de perfumes perfect for the cruel summer of '22. The three fragrances have citrus fruits and flowers as a common theme, each adding a personal touch with a particular accord. I tried them all, and even before knowing the notes, this struck me the most, followed by Zara Ocean Nº4 - Saffron Orange Flowers and Zara Ocean Nº3 - Caviar Bergamot, respectively. According to the ZARA website, Salty Ocean Bouquet is fragrant with fresh and relaxing notes of bergamot and black pepper wrapped in wood and orange blossom. Um... are we really sure? To my nose, the essence is leathery, rich in spicy, bitter, and salty nuances.
Between the opening notes, I immediately perceive a slightly leathery scent, and I am not referring to soft suede but a beautiful Florentine leather. Perhaps the leathery accord is hidden in the formula, or maybe it is simply the result of the bitter undertones of orange blossom spiced with a good dose of phenolic black pepper. I struggle to recognize the citrus notes of bergamot. It's subdued, and the opening is fresh, dark, and anything but citrusy on my skin. It is precisely this detail that pushes me to prefer this cologne over Zara Ocean Nº3 - Caviar Bergamot, which is more hesperidic. Still, I love it and will undoubtedly add it to my private collection.
I let the minutes go by slowly, and the scents unfold and adapt to my skin's chemistry. The leathery nuance is always present, even if it moves to the background to make room for the bittersweet notes of orange blossoms. I can say that Salty Ocean Bouquet centers on this white flower's notes. I also seem to perceive the sweeter notes of the orchid or of another flower with honeyed nuances, which adds a floral tinge to the heart.
And then comes the ultimate act. The perfume does not lose the leathery nuance that accompanies it throughout its life cycle but wraps itself on a musky base with a touch of oak moss. The woody side mentioned by ZARA should include dried cedar as I get a hint of shavings and probably some earthy green vetiver which keeps the scent fresh. I don't believe there is blonde sandalwood as I don't feel any creaminess on the base. And then there is the salty aspect. It's not that smell of seawater or algae, but something closer to ambergris, that slightly salty touch that only this substance can offer.
Those who read me might think that I am a ZARA sponsor or affiliate, but this is not the case. Personally, I find the fragrances of this premium line designed and created together with Jo Malone to be noteworthy. Indeed they have a uniqueness and a thickness that we do not find in the other cheaper range. And certainly, the value for money is unmatched for around € 25 or less for a 90ml size. I confirm its use during hot days or evenings, during late spring, and throughout the summer season. It projects pretty loud the first hour, a compliment getter! To my taste, this and Zara Ocean Nº4 - Saffron Orange Flowers have a more masculine edge, while Zara Ocean Nº3 - Caviar Bergamot is genderless. Well, I can't wait to buy the other two before ZARA decides to withdraw them from the market.
Instead, I would be curious to know if anyone else recognizes a leathery facet in this fragrance or if it is just a figment of my imagination!
I base the review on a 90ml bottle I have owned since July 2022.
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