Perfume Review: Serge Lutens Encens et Lavande
First off, is there anyplace in this country in which the weather is not majorly sucking? (see, it's so bad I am channeling my inner 80's teen!) Ghastly, humid heat in the North, Auntie-Em sized twisters in the middle, snow (!) in the Northeast, and the Southland is just hot with enough mugginess to make it disgusting.
This weekend was Gay Pride and friends tried to drag me there. No thanks, said I. Despite the fact that I went well out of my way to live somewhere where the sun shines 320 days out of the year, I don't like direct sunlight. I also don't like crowds, loud noise and drinking in the afternoon; I wouldn't go to Mardi Gras either.
What, if anything you might be asking does this have to do with scent? Well, I did have to think what I was going to wear to the office today (Monday the 9th) while waiting for the new iPhone to debut. You see, my employers in their infinite wisdom have decided that the AC should be turned off on nights and weekends to save energy. Never mind that I work in a building that is inhabited 24/7 by various departments. Never mind that the HVAC system has to go into triple-overdrive on Monday to get our offices to less resemble a sauna by Wednesday. Never mind that it will inconvenience me, ME, Norma Desmond.
Now that I have lulled you all into a coma with my morning rant, I will review the scent I chose.
Encens et Lavande as you all know is one of the non-export fragrances in the Lutens line, meaning one can only get it by jumping through hoops. Or perhaps waiting for it to show up at Bergdorfs and paying though the nose (heat makes me grumpy). This is saddening, because I prefer this to it's counterpart in the export line, Gris Clair. E et L reverses GC's dance from light to dark: It starts off with the incense and gradually adds in the lavender with just a touch of the camphor that is amped up in the opening of GC. The icy lavender here isn't as forceful as the opening in GC; compared to Encens et Lavande Gris Clair seems somewhat shrill. The drydown marries the disparate elements to a smooth amber base, the whole in my mind making me think of the dark, cool interior of a perhaps abandoned stone church. Could there be anything more perfect on a scorching day?
As mentioned, like all of the non-exports, this is available only at the Paris Salon, or can be shipped to you if you live in the EU. Lucky you. Gris Clair meanwhile is available wherever Lutens' export line is sold.
Image source, salons-shiseido.com.