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Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Perfume Review: Lalique Amethyst

I adored two out of the last three Lalique's releases, the chic almost-gourmand comfort scent, Le Parfum, and the sublime "mineral" vetiver, Encre Noir, and liked Perles de Lalique, which, although not especially original, was undeniably beautiful. And so I came to expect great things from Lalique and was excitedly looking forward to their latest offering, Amethyst. A road to disappointment is paved with great expectations.

Amethyst starts with a truly enjoyable burst of blackcurrant juice, an explosion of sweet tangy-ness from a berry freshly squeezed between fingers. The smell of blackcurrants is forever associated for me with my childhood, summers at the dacha, my great grandma...I have been looking for a true blackcurrant fragrance which would be this radiant and only subtly sweet and, for a lack of better word, natural, for a long time. Unfortunately, a couple of minutes into the scent's development, the freshly picked real berries suddenly turned into plastic effigies, and the just as synthetic raspberry appeared, completely unwelcome, and added a syrupy and what I can only call "generic department store scent" feel to the blend. Worst of all, however, was the musk. I want to appeal to those in whose power it is to cease the production of fruity-musky scent to please do so. The combination of sparkling berries/fruits and the soft white musk might seem like a great mix, but it is apparently very hard to pull off in any sort of original manner. If you smelled one of those blends, you've smelled them all, and good ones are very few and very far between.

I suppose, as fruity fragrances go, Amethyst, is not the worst. In fact, it is better than most. It smells like Mûre et Musc Extrême Light, if that makes any sense. If this is Lalique's nod to younger clientèle, I suppose, it might actually do quite well with the target audience. Me, I am sticking with Le Parfum and Encre Noir and am still expecting great new scents from Lalique in not too distant a future.

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Blogger tmp00 said...

Oh too bad!

I think that the climate of New England and Russia might have some similarities; we had those luscious blackcurrants as well. We would bravely muck through those brambles for the sweet berries. But in a way I kind of don't want that memory encapsulated. CB I Hate Perfume has taught me that I don't want my sense memory necessarily evoked and for sale.

Having written that there has to be a happy medium.

12:12 AM EST  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Looks purty at least...

4:32 AM EST  
Blogger elle said...

Wow - definitely my idea of a Stephen King nightmare scent. Will have to avert my eyes if I pass it in a dept. store - don't do well w/ horror scents (or movies).

5:50 AM EST  
Blogger lilybp said...

Nightmare for me too. Always happy to hear about another scent I can forget!:)

8:14 AM EST  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Black currant is def a big childhood memory thing for me. My very British Nana used to keep a tin of Grether's black currant pastilles in her top drawer & dole them out as special treats. I adored them. Years later I used to sometimes buy a black currant glycerin soap to scent my bathroom. My black currant nostalgia is 100% artificial, no real nothing about it & even so, I can't imagine this juice would take me there. Besides, as misty as the scent/flavor gets me I'm not sure I'd want to wear it. Thanks for making the personal sacrifice of trying it for us, lol.

8:29 AM EST  
Blogger Ducks said...

Oh, what a shame. A true currant scent would be delightful... once, while doing a Christmas bird count, we were invited to stop at a fellow birder's house. Although he was a complete stranger, we did stop in. We were underprepared for the day-- we had not packed a lunch, as we thought we were breaking for lunch (we were, but we were out in the weeds when we did so), and had nothing to drink, and desperately needed a restroom...

The birder was urgently called away and urgently left us with his wife, a total stranger to us. She kindly fed us, allowed us to use the facilities, and even found bottled water for us. She was a plain-featured, strong-bodied woman wearing a stained apron and simultaneously herding two youngsters and canning a wonderful, tart currant jam.

She gave me a taste of the jelly, which was beautiful. When I admired it, she handed me a sprig of currants to enjoy.

I will forever remember her lovely kindness and shelter on a clammy, wet, hungry day. What a great person.

Fake raspberries, on the other hand, yuck! I have to confess I really am not fond of Mure et Musc Extreme, though I wanted to be. It's just too candy sweet.

11:26 AM EST  
Blogger NowSmellThis said...

Too bad, that is a gorgeous bottle. I never see anything by Lalique on dept store counters in the US -- anyone know who carries the whole line?

11:45 AM EST  
Blogger Marina said...

I wonder if CB has a black currant accord...

3:01 PM EST  
Blogger Marina said...

Meh...does it, really? :-)

3:01 PM EST  
Blogger Marina said...

Same here. I am too old for both. :-)

3:02 PM EST  
Blogger Marina said...

If you like would be like...the end of the world or something :-)

3:02 PM EST  
Blogger Marina said...

Yes, sacrifice, indeed. *dramatically* Oh, how I suffered! :-D

3:03 PM EST  
Blogger Marina said...

What a wonderful memory! When meets people so very kind, it is amazing.

3:04 PM EST  
Blogger Marina said...

I don't like anything purple, so I am not really that taken with the bottle :-)

3:04 PM EST  
Blogger J.M. Reed said...

I didn't have the nightmare experience described here. It wore on me terminally well - better even than I expected - however, it is so light that the scent had almost entirely disappeared within 3 hours. The black currant and raspberry notes gave way to purple and blueish florals, which notoriously fade quickly. This is a beautiful scent with no staying power. I did not experience any plastic notes or synthetic scents. A pretty scent that's forgotten too easily.

12:54 PM EST  

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