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Friday, November 13, 2009

Ralph Lauren Love, UESism and Ninaisms

Decidedly, I have been spending too much time in the UES. And 40 hours a week in West Midtown apparently haven't even started to cure my UESism. To wit: my affection for Love, the limited edition perfume by Ralph Lauren. Actually "affection for a perfume by Ralph Lauren" is, perhaps, a symptom of UESism, in and of itself.

Chandler Burr describes Love thus:
"It’s as conventionally beautiful as the women in the “Fifth Avenue to Lexington above 70th but below 96th” zone, all getting their hair highlighted at the same salon. There’s zero edge...(...)"
And I completely agree. It's one of those perfumes that is hard to break down into ingredients because it is so...prettysmoothperfumeygeneric. With emphasis on pretty and generic. As prettily generic as, well, Lauren's or Kors's fashion. (It is "aesthetically pleasing", it is cohesive, it is reliable, it is oftentimes impeccable, but edgy it is not) As generically pretty as Tiffany jewelry. (Again, it is mostly timeless and flawless and makes an unerring gift and I want more of it, make no mistake about it, please...I am panicking a little bit here, what if I never get another blue box after this?!...All I am saying is Tiffany is not avant garde. But neither am I!) Is generic too harsh a word? Perhaps. Let's call it approachable, universal. Which is in a way ironic, when one applies those words to describe something evocative of UES.

To make the long story short, Love will not take the prize for the most innovative perfume of our generation. Or the generation before. But the slight bitter booziness of the top notes, the simultaneously ripe-honeyed and sparkling quality of the rose in its heart, the creamy, appropriately luxurious feel of amber and sandalwood in the base are, to me, very appealing... especially that strange bitter booziness...Love is pretty (not beautiful- pretty), elegant, wearable, versatile...it is something that, when worn, would never make anybody "question your taste level". And, as Burr points out:
"... it will make quite a few men in the East 80’s lean appreciatively into the necks of quite a few smartly dressed women."
And that's always a bonus.

Available in an egalitarian range of prices, from $90.00 to $600.00 for a fancy, rather cheesy crystal flacon.

Fellow Project Runway fans, so what did you think of this season?

Image source, Vogue.

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6 Comments:

Blogger Alyssa said...

Wait...WHAT? Dude. I had to google UES before I realized you were talking about the Upper East Side. Got to start spending more time in New York!

But surely you understand my confusion? I mean, I thought the UESers all wore Chanel No. 5. Maybe I'm thinking of their mothers...

8:17 AM EST  
Blogger ScentScelf said...

Too much edgy just puts you over, right? There's always room for attractive, well put together generic. Indeed, for putting a good face forward whilst mustering ones forces for a good shot of edgy, even, no? :)

Thanks for the review.

9:29 AM EST  
Anonymous Flora said...

I can't remember if I have even tried this one, I am sure my local Macy's must have it. I still pine for their original, gorgeous Lauren fragrance, unsurpassed by anything they have done since.

1:10 PM EST  
Anonymous Flora said...

P.S. - This season of Runway is below par - no one seems to want to use COLOR, and no one who is left is groundbreaking in any way. PLus, too little Michael and his catty remarks. Meh.

1:12 PM EST  
Blogger elle said...

There are definitely days and occasions where I want to have an undemanding, simply pretty perfume. And I have to say I've always loved RL clothes - easy, nicely tailored classics I can mix w/ more eccentric pieces when I want. Will have to resniff this scent.
This season of PR was certainly better than Bravo's attempt at a replacement w/ The Fashion Show, but some of the energy and fun were missing. And there didn't seem to be any stand out personalities or designers. Was sorry that Nina Garcia was only on sporadically and I heard Tim Gunn say in an interview that he felt enervated by the LA weather - missed NY's clouds and cooler days. Am wondering if some of that feeling of his didn't spread throughout the production.

4:29 PM EST  
Blogger lilybp said...

Project Runway sucked this year. The ever-rotating panel of judges. . . the forgettable outfits. . .Heidi. . . the final decision ("you made a beautiful dress; now go home. "yours was a mess-fest; you can stay). I watched every one, though, except for the home visits. And I will watch the finale (sigh).

Oh, yeah, the perfume. I'm not interested.

Hope things are OK. Drop me a line. . .

9:20 AM EST  

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