Suzanne's Perfume Journal

March 28, 2013:

As a cure for writer’s block, this week I’m going to do something different here at my perfume journal. I’m simply going to write one small post a day about whatever perfume I’m wearing, whether it’s something new or an old favorite, with a short description about the perfume itself, along with some random thoughts about whatever is going through my mind ... either free associations about the perfume, or maybe just a survey of what I’m doing that day which might have nothing to do with perfume (I haven’t decided yet). I’ll state right off the bat that this style of writing doesn’t feel satisfying to me; anyone who has read me regularly knows that I prefer to write a weekly essay that is more meaningful or more entertaining than what you’ll see here over the next five days (five days constitutes a week, doesn’t it?). But sometimes it’s better to write anything at all than to sit on one’s thumbs and hope that inspiration is going to strike, so with that in mind, here’s the first of these small exercises. (I'll be posting these at night, by the way.)

What I’m Wearing, Day Four:

April Aromatics Rose L’Orange.
A couple days ago, under my “Day Two: Amoureuse” post, I said that I was at a point in my perfume exploration where I'm sated and no longer feel the need to keep accumulating perfumes. While that is true, every time I open my sample set from April Aromatics I am soo enthralled, it’s almost like being a newbie perfume lover again. And quite seriously, if I had the resources to do it, I’d replace a half-dozen bottles in my current collection with bottles from this line of all-natural perfumes. Perfumer Tanja Bochnig creates perfumes that are saturated and have a laser-like focus to them (which is very much my kind of thing), and while a number of her perfumes are quite robust in terms of their sillage, even her perfumes that are on the soft side have a radiance and clarity to them that goes right to my pleasure center. Case in point is Rose L’Orange, a perfume in which a very pure and beautiful rose accord is lightened by the uplifting essences of the orange tree—neroli and orange blossom—rendering it ultra-dewy and fresh-faced. And just when you’re thinking, Such a modern take on rose! along comes a soft, powdery vanilla note that inserts a bit of old-fashioned, vintage glamour. This is not a gourmand vanilla by any stretch of the imagination: it’s a sheer and delicate, talcum-powder version of vanilla, very benzoin-like. Rose L'Orange's overall effect is one of shimmering femininity. This perfume beguiles in a soft-focus way … it smells both natural and gently cosmetic. Its organic beauty shines through and isn’t overly glammed-up, so to speak.

Rose L’Orange has a youthful, pure and uncluttered sensibility that makes me think this is the rose perfume that would win the rose-haters over, because most people who don’t like the note complain that it smells old-fashioned and heavy. And yet, is Rose L'Orange perhaps too youthful for someone like me to wear? Not at all: that deft touch of the vintage about it is what makes it womanly and timeless in terms of its appeal. For those wondering if the orange in Rose L’Orange smells like the fruit of the orange tree, the answer is no. Neroli and orange blossom smell floral rather than citrusy, and they impart a light, honeyed sweetness here that (in my opinion) gives a wonderful sense of lift to the rose accord. Orange blossom can often times smell indolic, but in Rose L'Orange it is polite, while still being doe-eyed and alluring.  

Often I include comments from my husband in my perfume posts—and I do so because he is chiefly the person who smells them on me, since I work at home, and he’s become my barometer for judging how my fragrances smell from a distance. He favors vanilla, tobacco and wood scents, and it’s rare for him to either notice or to enjoy a floral scent on me. Rose seems to be the exception—he loves the scent of roses (see photo below) and this one drew an unprompted “Wow, that smells beautiful!” comment from him just this evening.

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A Week of Wearing What I Like: Day Four

So there you have it … I’ll be charging his credit card for a bottle post-haste. ;-)

April Aromatics Rose L’Orange eau de parfum contains pure extracts of Rosa centifolia and Bulgarian Rose Otto, mixed with Neroli from Tunisia and Orange Blossom from Italy. It can be purchased from the April Aromatics website, where a 30-ml bottle is €169.90 (prices are in Euros). My review is based on a sample sent to me by the perfumer.

Photo of beautiful redhead is from; photo of me and my husband Mark (who is smelling, not picking the roses next to Notre Dame Cathedral) is from blogging friend Jasia Julia Nielsen;bottle image is from the perfumer's website.