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Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Perfume Review: Creed Virgin Island Water

Love in White was the scent of a Big White Wedding. Virgin Island Water is a fragrance of Honeymoon. It smells of relaxing likes this...

...drinking in the views...

...and the beverages...

...watching sunsets...

In fact, when I smell it, I hear Franke Previte sing (I've Had) The Time of My Life and Sandals Resorts commercial play in my of the very few commercials I actually like to watch, mostly because of the song, which never fails to put sentimental tears in my eyes ... Virgin Island Water, in turn, is one of even fewer tropical/beach-inspired perfumes featuring a prominent coconut note that I enjoy.

Allegedly inspired by a sailing holiday Olivier Creed had with his son, Erwin, and an unspecified royal couple near Ginger Island, Virgin Island Water has notes of essence of copra (the white inner portion of the coconut), coconut toddy (a liquid derived from the sweet sap of the palm tree), lime, bergamot, mandarin orange, hibiscus, ginger, ylang-ylang, jasmine, sugar cane, white rum and musk. The very list of notes reveals the contrast I enjoy in this scent (in general, give me a nicely done duality in a fragrance, and I am guaranteed to like it), the contrast of freshness and creaminess. The citrusy tangy-ness, the piquancy of ginger, the mouthwatering greenness of sugar cane perfectly balance the languid sweetness of ylang ylang and the gourmand quality of coconut. As a result, the citruses are not harsh, and the coconut note, which is usually a kiss of death for a perfume for me, is neither making Virgin Island Water reminiscent of a suntan lotion nor turning it into a tropical cocktail. Granted, there is a certain boozyness here, which, combined with the coconut and lime, does make one think about (or rather long for) a pina colada, but the similarity is very subtle and only adds to the appeal of the blend.

This is not a complex scent, but it is very smooth, very charming, and joyfully summery. I am not sure I can justify or indeed afford paying the price ($98.00 for 1oz, $185.00 for 2.5oz, $205.00 for 4oz at Bergdorf Goodman or Neiman Marcus) for what is a fairly simple albeit incredibly attractive fragrance, but, come summer, I may not be able to resist its allure.

Image sources,,,,,


Blogger tmp00 said...

I don't know about this one. How is it compared to say CB at the Beach?

11:16 PM EST  
Blogger Marina said...

I either don't remember the CB one or I haven't tried it. Is it at all aquatic? VIW is not aquatic at all, which is great for me.

11:18 PM EST  
Blogger Marina said...

I agree about coconut. I usually really, really can't deal with that note, but it is very nicely, subtly done here. Kudos for that. The price is certainly an Ouch! :-(

11:19 PM EST  
Blogger tmp00 said...

the CB one is aquatic, but it's also skin and "Coppertone 1972", that particularly American coconutty lotion scent.

I could just get my flat butt over to Neimans and answer my own question....

11:35 PM EST  
Blogger tmp00 said...

Ah, okay. That's the answer then. I've been resistant to trying some of these, all I need is to fall in love with something that costs $100 per ounce. I will have to get to Neimans and test this one though.

12:03 AM EST  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I thought to myself, this one doesn't appeal to me at all right now, no, not at all...but why am I pining for Hawaii, salivating for pina coladas, and dreaming of smelling Virgin Island Water? I guess it does appeal to me, after all.

3:38 AM EST  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I've never had a proper beach holiday. But, man, those images have made me yearn...

I fancy the Cape Verde islands... a week on Zanzibar... a hammock somewhere in Vietnam...

4:54 AM EST  
Blogger lilybp said...

Oh, you make this sound so great! Until now, my most tropical scent has been Datura Noir, which I really like (as this suggests, I'm not really opposed to coconut--I also love Ginger Ciao and Ava Luxe Viva). I wonder if there's hope for me here. . .

6:55 AM EST  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

There's something salty about this, rather than sweet, that really works. Sariah and I thought the coconut smelled like buttered popcorn -- and yes, coconut is a note I mostly don't like in fragrance (I don't like tropical-drink frags either). You're right -- it makes you think *about* an island vacation but not smell like you're wearing a drink.

Tom -- it did *not* have the tanning-oil smell, at least on our crew. More salty-popcorn-floral, not aquatic that I can remember. I think you might like it.

7:13 AM EST  
Blogger elle said...

It's just not fair that I'm reading this on a morning where it's literally freezing outside. If I had read this in mid-summer I'd have had *far* more resistance. Not now. And March's comment didn't help either. :-( Thank God for ebay because I really don't think I'll need a full bottle, but a decant? Absolutely.

7:38 AM EST  
Blogger chayaruchama said...

I didn't tolerate coconut in any other scent, because they screamed 'chemical !' to me...
But I make an exception for this, clearly.
I love it.
Don't know if I'll buy, or just decant, though.
But it's a great surprise to me, too.

Spot on, sister !

8:15 AM EST  
Blogger fmd74 said...

Coconut is the kiss of death for me as well. I just saw the notes for Ellie on NST and there are coconut notes there too. All of a sudden everywhere I look there's coconut in a perfume.

8:25 AM EST  
Blogger Marina said...

Tom, it wasn't aquatic on me and the coconut there made me think of exotic cocktails rather than suntan lotions. I prefer cocktails :-)

8:29 AM EST  
Blogger Marina said...

You and me both! Oh, to sit in the sun, to sip a cocktail...*cries*

8:29 AM EST  
Blogger Marina said...

Can I come? I'll be no trouble. I'll even bring my own hammock, which we keep in the closet, because we live in an apartment we got it is another story :-)

8:31 AM EST  
Blogger Marina said...

I think that, since you like those three, there is a great chance VIW will work for you.

8:32 AM EST  
Blogger Marina said...

I think it is very nicely, subtly done. I was pleasantly surprised.

8:33 AM EST  
Blogger Marina said...

It is freezing here too and super-windy. I have to tear myself from staring at that second image I used :-) The desire to be far, far away from here has never been so strong, grrr

8:34 AM EST  
Blogger Marina said...

In 9 coconut scents out of 10, the note smells of wet cardboard on me. Not here though, thankfully.

8:36 AM EST  
Blogger Marina said...

Gosh, I hope it's not a new trend. Coconut here is very nice, but if every brand will start releasing coconut scents...yikes!

8:37 AM EST  
Blogger Unknown said...

I couldn't resist this one. I really enjoyed Fire Island from Bond, but since I am still boycotting Bond, this will be a great substitute, it sounds like, yeah!!!

9:30 AM EST  
Blogger Marina said...

There are many companies worth boycotting, for bloggers as well as decant sellers. For various reasons. I feel that if I give in to the desire to do so, I'd have nothing to wear and nothing to write about :-) I just focus on the perfume, not the company. Or at least I try to, with varying degrees of success :-)

9:34 AM EST  
Blogger donanicola said...

Creed is one of those houses I haven't got to grips with. My ex was given Milleseme or something (nasty gold bottle)by his sister which I hated - was sure it had the dread melon note in it and there just seem to be altogether too many citrus scents for my liking. However I think I might need to re evaluate on the basis of this one. Its definitely not aquatic right?! (things with "water" in their name make me v suspicious.....)

10:47 AM EST  
Blogger Marina said...

As an aquatic-hater, I am happy to report that there is aquatic in VIW, on my skin and to my nose.

10:50 AM EST  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

My first thought on testing this was how well it straddles the line between trendy and evocative. I usually give 'summer tropical' scents (yes, I'm talking to you, Escada) a wide birth. This fragrance, however, is one I think I'll need. Wouldn't you know it would be so high $$$!

11:54 AM EST  
Blogger Marina said...

I absolutely agree! And I too wish it would be a little less expensive :-(

12:15 PM EST  
Blogger Unknown said...

This scent transported me exactly into your pictures. ;D I love it that it's not suntan-lotion-like and not too heavy on coconut, like you said. One of the best Creeds.

3:48 PM EST  
Blogger Marina said...

I agree. Creed got themselves a winner with this one.

3:51 PM EST  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

your pictures illustrate what i said about this scent yesterday on PoL. it's pretty, happy, and summery - reminds me of happy times in the '80s. would love to be gifted with it - but then again, may break down and get it for myself. - minette

5:16 PM EST  
Blogger Marina said...

I'd love to get this one as a gift too...perhaps my little one should start saving her pennies for Mother's Day LOL

5:29 PM EST  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

like the beach/Sandals resort spin you put to this, M. :-) coming to think of it, this bottle did conjure up a vacation visual for me- not exactly the beach but more of a breeze-on-a-lazy-afternoon sort of thing.

the one thing i noted about VSW was that it was not screaming back at me... which most of the Creeds i have smelled do to me on occasion.

8:00 PM EST  
Blogger Marina said...

Yes, this is not a screaming kind of scent, is it :-) Quite subtle, like that.

8:12 PM EST  
Blogger Trina said...

Gah! I sooooo need to try this.

2:09 PM EST  
Blogger Marina said...

You'll probably love it too, T :-)

2:16 PM EST  
Blogger Gigi said...

Creed is amazing!!! I put some on before I went over to visit my mom on Sunday [mother's day] had on some turquoise & rhinestone thong flats, a pair of black floaty chiffon palazzo pants, cute little black halter, my signature little aurora borealis heart on silver chain, got into my jeep- windows way down- lots of sun & breeze-- played some cush bossa nova nice & loud.... and it was HEAVEN on earth - never a more perfect scent for that kind of day! Can't wait for summer! I was a little afraid of the coconut mentions – conjuring up a suntan lotion nightmare, but nothing like that at all! This brilliant thing is a perfect balance of sweets & crisps with something earthy dancing down below…. So nice!

9:47 AM EDT  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

virgin island is the BEST!! you described it perfectly. The women absolutely love this smell. i couldn't afford it but i just went all out and bought it since i thought i'd use it sparingly. I can't stop spraying it!!!

4:58 PM EDT  
Blogger wggmn3 said...

Maybe this has been asked & answered but can anyone explain why Creed (whatever the fragrance) is so soooo expensive?...much pricier than the other big name, top gun houses ???...thanks 4 replies...

12:46 PM EST  
Blogger wggmn3 said...

also...What is CB at the Beach?

11:54 PM EST  

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