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Bombay Duck London

February 29, 2012 | Roja Dove Danger

Roja Dove Danger photographed by Jo Fairley against a vintage silk sari

The Scent Critic doesn’t quite know how Roja Dove has secured some of the raciest fragrance names ever for his signature creations, but Danger is the latest in a line of brilliant light-the-blue-touch-paper-and-retire titles emblazoned across his naughty purple labels.

First came Reckless, [...]

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February 2, 2012 | Caron Tabac Blond

First of all, I’d like to point out that despite the fact this fragrance harks back to the era of fur tippets and flapper dresses, no chinchillas were harmed in the photography of this bottle.  (The fur in my photo is entirely faux.  Thanks, Restoration Hardware;  the Davy Crockett hat’s come into its own in [...]

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February 7, 2011 | Yardley London April Violets

I don’t know if you’ve noticed, but something scary has happened to the price of fragrance in the last couple of years.  It’s not just raw materials increases, although those are set to soar further:  The Scent Critic is hereby issuing a warning, actually, that due to the devastation wrought on harvests by the tsunami [...]

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December 17, 2010 | The 12 Scents of Christmas No. 10: Estée Lauder Youth Dew

So: yesterday’s Scent Critic posting talked about how fragrance can turn you from a would-be couch potato into a party animal, with a waft of its magic wand.  But today, I’m going to marvel at its equal power to transport you through time and space.  Dr. Who, you can keep your Tardis.  We all have [...]

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August 18, 2010 | Honoré des Prés Chaman's Party

Photographed against the cover of Hippie by Barry Miles

Vetiver-lovers, get ready to party.  This is a corker of a vetiver.  And, to paraphrase the title of one of my favourite movies this year, It’s Not Complicated – because this is pretty much vetiver, pure and simple, from the first whoosh right through till the [...]

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May 17, 2010 | Diptyque Vetyverio

Perfumer Jean Kerleo – for years the resident ‘nose’ at Jean Patou – once shared with me a trick for conjuring up vetiver, in your memory.  ‘Close your eyes,’ he said, ‘and imagine opening a sack of potatoes.’  Earthy.  Slightly damp.  Even a little dirty, maybe.  Since then, I’ve never smelled a sack of potatoes [...]

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