Every White has its Noir

I do not travel much for business. So when I was delegated from my office to attend a trade show in Denver to where I’ve never been before and with co-workers from other offices, none of whom I knew in person, it was a reason for anxiety on its own. But on top of that, as I checked the forecast, I was unpleasantly surprised.

Weather in Denver (end of April 2019)

First I thought it was a fluke, a software glitch, which would be fixed soon: look at the temperature change from Sunday to Monday (the day of my arrival). It was hard to accept because at the time I checked the weather there was similar to what we had – and where I live it felt already like late spring if not summer. The picture below was taken just 2 days before I left for Denver.


Blossom in CA Park (April 2019)


But as the trip was nearing, I accepted the unpleasant reality, packed my suitcase with warmer clothes and took out of the closet a leather jacket that I had previously hidden away. One positive side, a so-called silver lining in all that, was that it was another chance to wear “winter” perfumes.

On arrival, I acknowledged that it was cold and even put on a hat while waiting for a car at the airport, but it was a bright sunny day, so my thoughts about a mistake in the forecast ran through my mind again. But a car ride to the hotel, registration there and a quick drink with a group of co-workers later (about a couple of hours in total), when I looked out of the window, the view changed dramatically. I needed a winter perfume (and it was April 29th!).


Snow in Denver (April 2019)


Nappa Noir was created for SixScents Parfums by Calice Becker in 2012 as a part of their Series 4: Characters. Notes include: Ylang Extra Moheli, Violet Leaf Absolute, Violet Flower Accord, Tobacco, Coffee Co2 Extract, Indonesian Patchouli, Florentine Iris Resinoid, Speculoos Cookie Accord, Cistus Absolute, Styrax, Leather, Birch Tar, Saffron, Vanilla Beans Resinoid, Serenolide. It is characterized as a floriental gourmand leather perfume.

I tried Nappa Noir for the first time years ago. A perfumista friend bought a sample pack of the series, liked this perfume and shared a tiny dab sample with me. Not thinking that the same perfumer created both Nappa Noir and, six years earlier, Cuir de Lancôme, from memory I thought that they had a lot in common. But as I tested them in parallel, I confirmed that while having a lot of commonality, these two were quite different: Nappa Noir was much softer and somewhat sweeter, while Cuir de Lancôme’s leather wass more pronounced.

I liked Nappa Noir but it was time when I was trying many new scents, so when my small sample was gone, I moved onto other perfumes, finding new favorites and adding them to my collection. I kept coming back to that perfume but nobody carried the brand any longer, and the only format you could buy Nappa Noir was a 50 ml bottle, which I wasn’t prepared to do without additional testing, which I couldn’t do because nobody carried the line. And then it was sold out even on the brand’s site.

Same as Rusty, who after finding once a cabinet with treats opened keeps coming back to check, even though months after that we make sure to keep it closed, I kept running Internet searches hoping that maybe Nappa Noir would re-appear. I was almost positive that it was gone for good: when was the last time you heard about SixScents Parfums, a brand that at some point was popular in the perfume Blogosphere? I don’t remember, so I thought that they’ve probably disappeared for good. But just in case…

One day my search had returned a result from the brand’s updated (so, no dead!) site. I bought a sample of Nappa Noir, confirmed that I still liked it, and was glad that the site, while still listing a full bottle as “sold out” (and I don’t think it ever comes back), offered a “Lab Sample” bottle (15 ml). Since 15 ml is more than I need of any perfume these days, I went for it. And the bottle has arrived shortly before my trip – so it went to Denver with me.

With that weather outside and inviting fireplaces burning inside the hotel, Nappa Noir felt right in place, and I loved how it developed on my skin providing so necessary comfort and support. And I know that if it weren’t for that white snow, I probably wouldn’t have got a chance to wear Nappa Noir until autumn.


Rusty and Nappa Noir

If you like leather perfumes and are in the US, I recommend getting a sample: $5 for 2 ml, including S&H, is not bad price to test interesting perfume. And if you like it, it’s still available in that plain 15 ml bottle (Disclaimer: No affiliation, just a grateful customer).


Images: my own


20 thoughts on “Every White has its Noir

  1. I don’t get to travel much for work either and the last time I was properly sent somewhere to do something work-related was over 2 years ago.
    That’s a rather drastic change of weather if you ask me but actually we’re experiencing the same situation in Poland. May 1st and 3rd were public holidays and many people took days off work to have 5 or even 9 days of a break. In the mountains of Zakopane half a meter of snow fell down to the ground! It’s crazy.
    But I’m happy for you that you found the appropriate perfume that kept you company on your trip.


  2. What extraordinary weather! Possibly something to do with climate change…? Glad you were able to find an optimum size of Nappa Noir and an occasion to wear it. I love Cuir de Lancome and imagine this would appeal. ‘Softer and sweeter’ sounds just fine.

    Denver airport is quite spectacular as I recall. The roof looks like the peaks of a lemon meringue pie.

    Still working on the samples you gave me – latest love is ‘Melodie de l’Amour’.


    • Funny thing is that now it’s back to low 20s. I think it’s explained by the fact that they are “in mountains.”
      I was so stressed out on my way to the event that I didn’t notice the airport. So it was a pleasant surprise on my way back :)


  3. I can imagine you doing a double-take checking out those temperatures. Just as well you looked them up or you would have been wholly unprepared in attire and perfume.

    Nappa Noir does sound lovely and like Vanessa I’m a big fan of Cuir de Lancome. Love the analogy of you continuing to look for it online like Rusty and the treat cabinet! Can’t quite pin his expression in that pic. He always like he’s thinking or trying to communicate something.

    Nice title. It seems very perfume line needs a Noir too :)


    • I was telling Rusty that he would get a treat if he sat long enough for me to take his pictures. He was considering whether it was worth tolerating :)
      Thank you for your kind words: I’m always thrilled when someone appreciates (well, read “understands” ;) ) my jokes or play on words.


  4. What a change in temps in a couple of days. Good job you checked and packed accordingly. Your perfume choice sounds divine.


  5. Nappa Noir sounds lovely. The only scent I remember hearing about from this brand is Poppy Soma, which won an award in 2017, but I haven’t smelled any of these scents.


    • 5-6 years ago I heard about the brand often: those series concepts weren’t old yet. But even then I’m not sure I tried any other of their scents.


  6. So it’s a general thing it seems. :) I’m looking out my window at the mountain behind Zagreb covered in snow. In May!
    I actually took a winter coat to work today as it’s that cold (compared to how I went to work only in a long-sleeved blouse last week).


    • It’s cooler even here (not more than 18C during the day), but it’s bizarre to hear about snow in May in Europe! Though I’m sure it’ll be hot there in no time :)


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