Heroic Thursday: Guerlain L'Ame d'Un Heros and Washington Tremlett Royal Heroes
Guerlain's and Washington Tremlett's takes on what a hero would smell like could not be more different...or further from my idea of a "heroic" fragrance.
L'Âme d'Un Héros, Guerlain's re-introduction of Coriolan in a more exclusive (read, expensive) form, in the Les Parisiennes line, is what I think of as a very classic (read, conventional) masculine scent, fresh, a little soapy and cold, on a darker, woody-herbal-mossy base. The most attractive note here is vetiver, which has the pleasantly sour, sorrel-like undertone that I enjoy, and which reminds me in a very, very distant manner of the vetiver note in Djedi, where it is also paired with patchouli. The slightly powdery, almost leathery base of L'Ame makes me think of Derby. I feel bad evoking the names of Derby and Djedi in relation to L'Ame d'Un Heroes, because, although some parallels can be drawn, the two glorious perfumes would serve as an endorsement of sorts for L'Ame, and L'Ame does not deserve it. It is an elegant scent, no doubt about that, very wearable, very versatile. But it lacks character and originality. Suited for a hero? Nope. Perhaps for a member of nomenklatura.
Washington Tremlett's creation is heroic only in a sense that it dares to smell rather ...unexpected for a scent that is supposed to be a) masculine, b) inspired by "the heroical [sic] value of Horatio Nelson and his Royals" and c)"characterized by historical glamour". The notes provided by the company are mandarin, bergamot, clove, anise, cedarwood, patchouli and tonka, but I also smell very strong ginger, and, combined with the sweetness of citrus fruits, the latter gives the blend a candied, almost edible undertone. Royal Heroes has the same dark gourmandness and mouthwatering booziness that I love in such perfumes as Le Dandy, Une Crime Exotique and Mechant Loup. Admiral Nelson and his Royals would never deign to wear something so ....what is the word I am looking for?...not obviously masculine? metrosexual? sexually ambiguous? fluffy? Having said that, although Royal Heroes does not smell as my idea of heroic (for that, I would refer you to the great leathery chypres of the past, for example, Yatagan), it smells incredibly attractive. It is a warm, sweet-n-spicy, comforting fragrance that is perfect for the horrible weather we are having now. Much to Nelson's consternation (or so I would guess), it is also entirely suitable for a woman.
L'Âme d'Un Héros is available at Bergdorf Goodman, Royal Heroes at Luckyscent.com.