Serge Lutens Boxeuses: Round One – I won

A while ago I did a post on several perfumes’ performance under extreme temperatures. As posting a picture from my Bikram yoga studio was out of question, I used a shot of Kathleen Turner from Body Heat (and mentioned her in the post). Since then different combinations of “Kathleen Turner “, “hot” and “body” brought to my blog more than six hundred visitors – just twice less than my blog’s traffic from the word “perfume” among the search terms, which is ironic since it is a perfume blog. And, as I checked out, not a single visitor came to Undina’s Looking Glass by searching for “Serge Lutens” or “Boxeuses”, both of which were mentioned (and tagged!) in the same post with the hot actress named above.

It’s not my attempt to improve my search engine ratings or attract more visitors (I’m not sure if I got even a single returning reader from native search traffic) but rather a quest to improve the balance of these search terms out there that I influenced unintentionally.

Radio Pictures Chorus Girls

Have you ever tried explaining to somebody who has almost no understanding in something that you know well why it takes exactly the amount of time you say it will and can’t be done twice faster? I do not write much about my day job on my blog but to give you a better idea of how I felt I want to mention that it’s a technology-related job in a non-technological company.

Last twelve months were extremely busy and stressful for me: we were working on a big project. It started with a series of meetings during which I had to fight for the realistic schedule. Preparing to those meetings was nerve-wracking: I knew the project would be a much more complex than my audience could comprehend or was willing to acknowledge; I knew they would be pushing for a shorter cycle and expecting an enthusiastic “Yes, we can” but I just couldn’t promise them something that wasn’t achievable.

One morning while dressing up for the Big Meeting I tried to choose what perfume to wear. Normally I would wear something discreet (e.g. Chanel No 19 parfum) but I knew that meeting would be a fight. Boxeuses! I do not wear perfumes as mood enhancers, I consider them ornamental. But in this case the name itself made me smile: it fit just perfectly!

Serge Lutens Boxeuses

I’m not sure what it was – a combination of the birch tar smokiness and dark fruit sweetness, an extra smile I got from the perfume name or my brilliantly performed presentation but I won that round and my schedule was approved.

Since then Boxeuses by Serge Lutens became my perfume for tough meetings. With that complex project my technical group was right on schedule while the data group, the manager of which was one of those pushing for unrealistic deadlines, spent extra seven weeks after that finishing their part. It took me a small-decant-worth number of unpleasant meetings and a lot of efforts.

The year isn’t over yet and it looks like I’ll need to consider either changing my job or buying a bottle of Boxeuses


For real reviews read Grain de Musc, Bois de Jasmin and Kafkaesque.

Images: Women boxing on a roof, 1938 – I’m not sure who is the author, but here I found the best information about it; perfume – hajussuri (from whom I also received the decant that got me through this year – thank you!)


30 thoughts on “Serge Lutens Boxeuses: Round One – I won

  1. How funny about all the hits for Kathleen Turner – I well remember going to see that film in the summer of… 1982?? It was warm at the time, I do remember that!

    I thoroughly enjoyed your work-related Boxeuses story – that is great news about getting your realistic schedule approved, and what a perfectly pugilistic perfume pick! (I’ll quit while I am ahead…)


  2. Well done Undina! What a great post. I’m sorry it’s been such a tough work year but glad you found a perfume to help you through in a small way.

    I know how frustrating it is when you are dealing with people who have no comprehension of how realistic – or rather unrealistic – what they’re asking is.

    Like V, the first para really made me smile!


    • Tara, thank you.

      I think that many people are used (subconsciously) to getting aspirational terms and later deal with delays, postponements and setbacks. So even when they are given realistic estimates, they habitually count in all future holdups – and feel like it will be too long.


  3. Glad your schedule was approved and Boxeuses sounds so well-fitting to wear it on a day when you are about to have a “fight” for something that is important to you.

    Well done and good luck!


  4. Hooray for you and that Boxeuses provided you with your “courage”. It reminds me of the quote by Mark Twain “It’s not the size of the dog in the fight, it’s the size of the fight in the dog.”


  5. There’s not much worse than work stress imo – mainly because to me life is so much more than a job, it’s a shame when it brings us down. I’m so glad you found something to help you get through it and give you some strength and confidence! I shall endeavor to find the same for myself. I need to find scents for everything still – the comforting cup of cocoa scent, the energizing and revitalizing scent, the confidence boosting scent, the sexy sultry scent… I will get there. So far I only know that HdP isn’t getting me there at all!!! Unless of course, I want to smell like pickles… :)


    • I always remember that life is much more than our jobs but unfortunately it’s hard not to be effected by something that consumes the biggest part of our lives. Perfumes (and good chocolate) help a lot. Whenever I need to take my mind off something unpleasant, I start thinking about perfumes – what I’ll wear, what I’ll buy next, about what I’ll write next.
      I hope you’ll find all those perfumes you need (and without any unwanted food associations ; -) )


  6. Yay for Boxeuses helping you win the battle (at least as a source of inspiration)! It’s a great scent – and good for you, Undina, for letting them know the facts.

    Here’s hoping that your stressful year gets better.


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  8. When Boxeuses entered the marked i thought it was plain and a bit boring but over the years my liking for it has grown and now I think it is a perfect everyday perfume for fall. And congrats to a more realistic scedule :-)


  9. I actually don’t remember Boxeuses well as I only sniffed it right when it came out. I definitely need to re-sniff soon. I loved your story, and although I agree with your view of perfumes as mostly ornamental, I also think there’s nothing like a leathery perfume to straighten your back.
    Well done you for telling them what is realistic for *your* work, and not just what they want to hear.
    Oh, and I LOVE that old photo of the female boxers.


  10. I’m very familiar with the types of situations that you describe! Computers do many complex tasks very fast, so it’s always a challenge to explain to non-techies (and sometimes techies too) that certain things do take A LOT of time to get done and really are a lot harder than they look at first glance. I’m glad that you’ve found Boxeuses to aid you in this battle, I love it, especially this time of year, when the colorful and easy part of autumn is over, and the dark and gloomy part is on.


    • For those battles I’d take any help I can get (and especially such good-smelling help) :-)

      I’m not sure if you look forward to the next stage (white (?) winter) or would prefer to stay in the current season but I wish you to get what you want (and you can use all available perfumes to make it easier on you).


  11. Hi Undina, Boxeuses is on my ‘must try’ list. I’d love to be teleported to the Paris boutique to get my nose to the bell jars. I hope that the technology that you are working on involves some form of easily affordable time and space travel.
    I use Robert Piguet’s Calypso as my boxing scent, or sometimes Van Cleef & Arpels First. It’s odd how your scent can alter your feelings of power. L’ Heure Bleue made me feel like a wuss.


    • Traveling between perfume meccas in no time would have been really nice.
      I like Calypso but I haven’t thought about it this way. I should wear it again and see if it puts me in a similar mood :)


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