I by Costume National

I by Costume National

Hi All, I by Costume National is not one of my new perfumes. It was given to me by the Australian Libertine Parfumerie crew as a Press Bottle a couple of years ago. Right now I’m thinking it’s particularly good for you Northern Hemisphere crew because it’s the type of cozy that will be perfect for your winter. TBH our summer has been so wet and cold this year I’m still wearing it. I know it’s the least important thing about a perfume but every time I wear this someone says I smell amazing or asks what it is. 

I by Costume National

Fragrantica gives these featured accords:
Top: Saffron Thyme Bergamot
Heart: Labdanum Lavender Geranium
Base: Leather Ambroxan Cedar

Most amber rich fragrances are pretty interchangeable, especially if you aren’t a full on, head in a box of perfume constituents type.  Ambroxan is so ubiquitous these days too. So when I first heard Costume National had released another amber it didn’t tweak my interest at all. I even may have rolled my eyes in the seasonal masterclass with my mate Ainslie. Then the host spritzed some mouillettes and the world tipped slightly sideways. WOW!

A very different herbal opening, not particularly textured or tapestried but very different. i catches me off guard every time. Even though I’m expecting it. Also, the fragrance is quite animalic but not in a feral way. A clean, cared for pet kinda way. There’s a smoky, mass market corn chips accord and all these side hustles float over and through a rich vein of amber.

I doesn’t stay still but is in constant fragrant motion for the first hour out so till it calms. Then it’s ambrosian/labdanum/smoky woods till dry down fade. It”s not a BIG perfume but has excellent sillage and projection, right till the very end. Perfectly unisex and smells so good to me and many of the people around me.

Are you an amber lover? Favourites?
Portia xx

 

December! WTF

December! WTF

Hey there Undina’s Looking Glassers. Portia from the sweltering heatwave that is Sydney, Australia. We have already had two 42C/110f days and today was the official start of summer. Hot is an understatement, especially coming out of nowhere like it did. How on earth have we already arrived at December 2020? WOW!

First day of December is always a little melancholy for me. It’s World AIDS Day. For anyone who lived in or around the gay community in the 1980s and 90s it is a day filled with quiet sorrow. It’s also filled with some of the most extraordinary memories of fundraising, community coming together, marching, getting our government on board (Australia was one of the first acknowledges and responders) and partying like we wouldn’t see tomorrow. For so many people that was the bleak truth. We lost nearly a whole generation and the gay community has never really recovered. Fortunately, getting HIV is now far less of a death sentence and people are being medicated into effectual remissions. Also, with the discovery of PrEP the transmission rates have slowed too.

It’s been so hot I’m having trouble trying to get my head to think of things you in the Northern Hemisphere could all be wearing to snuggle up to. Here are a few things you might want to spritz if you’d like to remember what summer feels like through scent.

 

Lys Soleia by Guerlain

The ultimate tropical white floral. Smooth, creamy and elegant. Nothing makes me feel more in tune with summer. Fruity white flowers, yang and vanilla with a bare hint of salt.

Mandragore by Annick Goutal

This is another of the weird ass Annick Goutal fragrances. Spearmint, pepper, star anise and ginger combine in the most cooling and refreshing gourmand I’ve ever met. Sweet, tart and spicy but like a cool wash.

Pichola by Neela Vermeire Creations

Another white floral, this time spicier, sparkling and backed by vetiver for depth. It may not be the most summery wear but it will always remind me of times spent staying in the Lake Palace in Undaipur, surrounded by the glittering Lake Pichola.

Pimiento by Miller et Bertaux

If you dream of that scent as you cut into a bell pepper/capsicum, then this is that make believe and magical first cut. All the reminders of summer salads, happy, healthy meals full of fun and laughter. A job I loved to do growing up.

Sakura by DIOR

OK, OK, OK! I know. Cherry blossoms are spring. Sure, but this is much more than blossom. Here we have the cherry fruit, roses, some soft woods and musk. A perfect summer spritz if ever there was one. Surprisingly long lived.

Scent by CoSTUME NATIONAL

Soft white flowers sit atop an amber and stuff base. A perfect fit for sweaty nights, trying to sleep under the ceiling fan. The base is dry and smells like a cross between electrical sparks and drilling concrete.

 

Hopefully some of these can help you get through the dark and cold of winters up north.

Do any of them sound like a good fit for you?
Portia xx