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Friday, August 21, 2009

Yves Saint Laurent Parisienne: Perfume Review

I feel pretty,
Oh, so pretty,
I feel pretty and witty and bright!
And I pity
Any girl who isn't me tonight.

I feel charming,
Oh, so charming
It's alarming how charming I feel!
And so pretty
That I hardly can believe I'm real.

I feel stunning
And entrancing,
Feel like running and dancing for joy,
For I'm loved
By a pretty wonderful boy!

Yves Saint Laurent's new Parisienne sings this songs, and it twirls, and it smiles, and it winks and it is so full of joy and so pleased with itself and the world that it might simply burst like a fantastic pink bubble and rain down in a myriad rose petals. Ah, so pretty!- I exclaimed the moment I smelled it. So romantic. So unashamedly feminine. So exactly like what I didn't know I really wanted.

The ad... and I can't remember last time I liked an advertising this much... the concept of "the glamour and seductive allure of a Parisian woman" and the list of notes, "with a vinyl accord, said to add a modern twist to the fragrance and evoke the gloss, varnish or metal of a spike heel" (source) present the fragrance as a little more sensual, darker and edgier than it is on my skin. I repeat, I adore the advertising for Parisienne and I don't think that it clashes with the fragrance, but the smell, to me, would be represented even better by a lighter, brighter, girlier visuals like those for Miss Dior Cherie (another campaign that I love).

The perfume had me at bonjour with its sweet-and-tangy accord of cranberry and rose. I have been looking for the mouthwatering sugary sourness in a perfume ever since I encountered it in Quel Amour. The Goutal's creation was a little too acidulated. I found some in Sophia Grojsman's earlier creation, 100% Love, but, although strikingly unique, it was ultimately too sweet. Parisienne strikes a perfect balance of sweetness and tartness. The airy tanginess of cranberry is enhanced by peony and vetiver, the sweetness of rose is underscored by blackberry, violet and sandalwood.

The violet is another aspect of Parisienne that I enjoy; in fact, I think that it is the presence of the softly powdery note, vaguely evocative of lipsticks, powders and somehow, to me, of all things "French", that makes the perfume "Parisienne". And when violet is joined by a delicate hint of patchouli, the composition, although never, on me, achieving the vinyl edge, acquires that twilit, dusky, husky quality that is promised by the elegantly-suggestive commercial. In other words, girly as it is, Parisienne has depth. It is a proper perfume, with refined structure and the kind of harmonious complexity that is the testament to the talent of the creators.

One always dreams of finding an unexpected gem among the multitude of new luxe releases, and once in a while the dream comes true. Fans of the aforementioned Quel Amour and 100% Love as well as of such Grojsman classics as- of course!- Paris and Beautiful, along with lovers of the retro-chic, flirty creations like Drole de Rose, Lipstick Rose and Le Pot Aux Roses, please, take note of Parisienne.

I will leave you with the second commercial teaser for Parisienne, courtesy of YSL, click here for the first.

The fragrance is expected to arrive in the US in September.

Image source,, YSL.

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Blogger Bryan said...

"The perfume had me at bonjour..."
I grinned from ear to ear when I read this.
I so love your posts before bed...yeah I keep odd hours due to work and school. I adore your style and your wit. And, given that I think we are very close scent twins, I'm excited to try this.
I'm feeling your excitement and it is quite catchy.

2:47 AM EDT  
Blogger carmencanada said...

Oh dear, you were a lot more taken with this than I was, lucky you... I found it very nice but I guess I'm really saturated with the fruitchouli-rose accord. But then I'm not a huge fan of patchouli, rose or berries, so this one was never intended for me. And maybe I was a little annoyed to see a Brit stand in for a Parisian. Ok, colour me grumpy! ;-)

5:05 AM EDT  
Blogger elle said...

I thought I would really like this scent. Didn't think I would love it. I was wrong. I adore it. It's one of those scents that is simply pretty in the best sort of way and it makes me completely happy. I really hope it has a parfum version as I think that would be utterly perfect.

6:35 AM EDT  
Blogger Eleven European Mystics said...

Can't wait...! It isn't here yet, but if it is able to create the feeling your description of it does, well, one should wear it. Quel Amour was a joy, but sometimes it was a lollipop'ish kind of joy, which I understand with relief Parisienne is not.

8:37 AM EDT  
Anonymous Mimi said...

Wow, this sounds like it might be right up my street. I like Drole de Rose and Lipstick Rose muchly, and have been looking for a patchouli-rose combination that is more satisfying than L'Artisan's Voleur. Also, I love 'Yvresse', another Sophia Grojsman creation.

Kate Moss is very un-parisienne, though. But she has an edginess that French lovelies do not, perhaps...

9:13 AM EDT  
Blogger Tara said...

Thanks for such a wonderful review!! Paris was my HG 80s and 90s and I absolutely adore Drole de Rose and Lipstick Rose...I can't wait for this one!!! This is all so funny because I don't consider myself a girly girl, but I do love the rose/violet combination.

9:21 AM EDT  
Blogger Alyssa said...

All those rosy violets have no time or tolerance for my resin-loving skin, I'm afraid. But I'm glad to hear you so enthusisastic, that's always fun. You're on a roll!

11:17 AM EDT  
Anonymous Flora said...

I can't wait to try this - I love the original Paris anyway and this rose/violet/cranberry thing you describe is just the ticket!

1:17 PM EDT  
Blogger Marina Geigert said...

I am so pleased to know that you liked the review :-) And lovely to hear from a scent twin, always!

1:19 PM EDT  
Blogger Marina Geigert said...

Fruitchuli- what a great word. Funny thing is, I only get a hint of patchouli.
Which French model would you have liked to see as a face of Parisienne? Personally I like Julie Ordon a lot.
The commercial and the visuals here, are so well done, that I even like Moss here, even though I am not a fan of hers at all.

1:21 PM EDT  
Blogger Marina Geigert said...

Oh, you are right. Am imagining it in a parfum now. Mmm.

1:21 PM EDT  
Blogger Marina Geigert said...

You found the word I was struggling for! Lollipop'ish. Quel Amour was too much of that.

1:22 PM EDT  
Blogger Marina Geigert said...

I will ask you the same question as Denyse, because I am very curious, which French model would you have liked to see as a face of Parisienne?

1:23 PM EDT  
Blogger Marina Geigert said...

Just expect something "airier", less "thick", less "strong", more sparkly as the ones that you listed, and I think you might like it too.

1:23 PM EDT  
Blogger Marina Geigert said...

You never know, this might catch you off guard and make a girly girl wearing pink out of you :-))

1:24 PM EDT  
Blogger Marina Geigert said...

I think you might at the very least like if not love this one.

1:24 PM EDT  
Blogger Beth Gehring said...

This one has me salivating for it:))))))))))))))))))

1:49 PM EDT  
Blogger Marina Geigert said...

It has your name on it! :-)

1:50 PM EDT  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

But did you like it?

I'll try the scent when an opportunity arrives, but seriously resent the choice of Moss. I've never found her interesting, besides which she's so utterly English. Audrey Tautou would be far better, but then she's already booked.
-- Gretchen

PS: Now I've got an earworm. Quick, hum a different tune. . .

2:53 PM EDT  
Blogger Marina Geigert said...

Loved it.
Moss? Yeah. But really don't mind her here, for once.

3:26 PM EDT  
Anonymous Mimi said...


Audrey Tatou would seem the obvious choice, but I find her oddly static. Her face is pretty but lacks character, it is so immovable.

Anna Mouglalis would be a good choice for Parisienne I think. Gorgeous, but slightly edgy.

9:10 AM EDT  
Blogger Marina Geigert said...

I like Anna Mouglalis too.

12:15 PM EDT  
Anonymous Claudia0219 said...

This is probably the ONE YSL that peaked my interest, its a must try for me. Eventhough my fav Rose is FM Lipstick Rose......this one sounds incredibly nice to me.

11:44 PM EDT  
Blogger Cat said...

"The mouthwatering sugary sourness" is exactly why i had to had it! It is nothing great, maybe. But something nice and pretty. I almost get nothing of the violets but pretty roses, berries and a soft musky woods base. It's this kind of scent which you, when smelling it after a few days of not wearing it, on your scarf, find so good you want to wear it soon again.

6:57 AM EST  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have been on a new scent hunt for weeks and today I fell in love.
I tried this perfume at 9am and it still smells beautiful at 7pm.
I made everyone in work smell it and both the women and the men thought it was lovely and as I work for Trading Standards I trust their opinions.
P.S Elizabeth Taylor for me would have been perfect for the campaign as the scent is so unashamedly feminine,

1:40 PM EST  
Blogger Balutakat said...

Thank you so much for these thoughtful reviews. I realized I ask for a Christmas perfume based solely on your comments - and this is the one I'll ask for - not once have you steered me wrong!


3:03 AM EST  
Blogger Balutakat said...

Oh, and the print ad *does* say "She is not from Paris but Paris adopts her because she knows how to love, how to live." I don't know about Kate, but I'm okay with being adopted. :)

3:08 AM EST  
Anonymous Ariffshah said...

Marina, would love if you could review the Jazz by YSL. I know this is the ol skool perfume, but i think the smell is still relevan.

Maybe from your point of view..


3:26 PM EDT  

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