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Bombay Duck London

Kate Moss Wild Meadow

The Scent Critic wishes to make one thing clear:  I am not a scent snob.  I may be utterly beguiled by the history of the grand fragrance houses, and enamoured of many of their creations (though they’re infinitely capable of launching the occasional ‘dog’, too) – but over the years, many of my fragrance amours have been inexpensive.  For instance:  4711 is peerless as an eau de Cologne, in my book – but super-cheap.

One of my first fragrance loves – Aqua Manda – was pocket-money prices.  (I still cherish a bottle of it, sent by a kind reader from her collection.  Mandarin heaven, even though it’s 30 years old.)  Many of the Demeter fragrances are under a tenner (and I’ve always enjoyed their tomato leaf scent, and the cut grass fragrance, both of which created quite a stir in their day).  And since this week I am going to focus on floral fragrances – a petal-fuelled celebration to coincide with the Chelsea Flower Show – then I will own up to a sneaking enjoyment of Kate Moss Wild Meadow, a highly affordable option in the Coty portfolio.

Actually, many of Kate’s creations up till this point have been surprisingly good, such as the cocooning Kate Moss Velvet.  I have a strong sense that she understands the value of her own Kate Moss brand too well to allow it to be linked with anything that doesn’t meet her exacting standards.)  Allegedly inspired by the Cotswolds, where the supermodel has a house, this is featherlight, and pretty, and undemanding.

It’s highly reminiscent of Estée Lauder’s Pleasures, with a sheer, fresh fruity-floralness.  I was rather hoping for a glorious hit of cut grass or even new-mown hay in there, but no:  at first peachy and with a squirt of grapefruit, it transforms into a posy of rose, magnolia, apple and honeysuckle (honeysuckle being something of an ingredient du jour in floral perfumery).  The apple blossom note is really good, though:  for comparison, I actually stood by my Peasgood Nonsuch (yes, there is such a tree), breathed deep of the blossom – which this year is more magnificent than ever before;  the two were virtually indistinguishable.

It’s pretty short-lived, with fairly skimpy undertones of amber and benzoin.  (If these base notes were underwear, they’d be a thong, compared to the corsetry that underpins a Guerlain or a Chanel creation.)  But the teenager who buys Kate’s designs from Topshop and has tearsheets of Ms. Moss Sellotaped to her bedroom wall would absolutely swoon for it – and won’t have to save up long to buy it.  Meanwhile:  I have to admit to a sneaking admiration for Wild Meadow, too:  ‘Brand Moss’ does it again.

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