Perfume Review: Vivienne Westwood Boudoir
Boudoir is Vivienne Westwood’s first and perhaps most successful perfume (the other two scents, Libertine and Anglomania, seem to have been discontinued; only Boudoir is featured on Westwood’s site). According to Jan Moran, the notes are viburnum, marigold, orange blossom, orris, red rose, cinnamon, coriander, cardamom, amber, vanilla, sandalwood and patchouli. The fragrance is classified as Oriental-Green, and the “green” sub-category comes as a surprise to me. I would have welcomed the freshness and even the sharpness of a green note, I would have loved it to pierce the creamy, rich olfactory texture of Boudoir but unfortunately there is no hint of green here, to my nose.
It might seem from the above paragraph that I dislike Boudoir. I do not. However I am unable to wear it. When I do, it seems that, as the expression goes, the scent wears me, not the other way round. It envelopes me in its opulent, heady cloak and slowly but surely smothers me till I give up and wash it off (not an easy thing to do, by the by). It amazes me that a fragrance this smooth can be so deadly. The orris is soft and velvety, the rose is silky, the floral accord that I have always suspected to include tuberose is suave and sweet, the vanilla-amber-sandalwood blend (I do not get much patchouli here, but I do get a hint of dirty little something that I am sure must be musk) of the drydown is so creamy and thick, it seems possible to slice through it like through a wedge of butter. The overall effect is incredibly rich, too rich for my feeble physique. In that respect, Boudoir reminds me of two other beautifully blended scents that I admire but rarely dare to apply to my skin, Sacrebleu by Parfums de Nicolai and Talisman by Balenciaga. All three have the warm, sumptuous, dark-golden creaminess that is incredibly attractive and that makes them very hard for me to wear.
Boudoir is available at PerfumeMart.com, $68.00-$85.00.