It’s time to wrap up my 2012 Perfume Project! Technically the end of 2012 would have been the timely time to do it, but let’s crack on anyway!
- After sniffing 52 perfumes over 52 weeks, the winner was the first one I tried, Chanel’s Coco. Deemed “earthy, dramatic and foxy” when first scooshed in January 2012, it’s remained earthy, dramatic and foxy every time I’ve retested. I haven’t got round to forking out for a bottle yet, but it’s nice to know there’s the potential to smell that way. In my own mind, at least!
- The runner up was the orange blossomy goodness of Elie Saab, followed by Vanilla Freesia & Lychee by Korres. The latter was a gift from The Mothership and is a nice everyday fragrance which makes one smell like an exotic, summery, fancy cake. In a good way!
- The worst: Rive Gauche by YSL. I love the packaging – it looks like a canister in which an evil madman would store a lethal gas that would DESTROY THE WORLD if broken open – but I agree with Gareth’s verdict that I reeked, “like an old piano teacher from the 1970s”
- It’s so easy to be seduced by packaging. Would the Project outcomes be different had it been all Blind Sniffings? I love Coco’s classy glass; would I be half as enamoured if it looked more like a bottle of Irn Bru? I was also gutted that I didn’t like any of Tom Ford’s perfumes no matter how hard I sniffed… the packaging is so swanky! And even if I had liked Marc Jacob’s Daisy, I probably would never buy it as the dorky bottle reminds of an Avon kids’ fragrance I got for Christmas in the 80s.
- The best part of the Project was testing the wee samples donated by Debra. Many were tiny, plain vials attached to a handwritten label, so I had to use my nose and not be led astray by fancy packaging. Debra, if you’re out there, thanks again! I passed them on to a good friend doing her own Perfume Project. I hope they will keep jetting around the country ’til they’re all snuffed out.
- My favourite of Debra’s collection was En Passant by Frederic Malle Editions de Parfums. My notes were, “Vanillaish? Aquatic. Warm. Not old lady.” The professional reviews I read afterwards used words like stems, leaves, linen, cucumber. Are these things really subjective or is my nose making shit up?
- All in all, it was a great project and I missed having a pointless yet absorbing project (with accompanying spreadsheet) this past year. Where to for 2014? 52 malt whiskys in 52 weeks? When in Rome, and all that? Hmm… back to the drawing board.