Monday, November 22, 2010

Outlaw Perfumes: Amazing, and my conclusions (aka "Outroduction")

Amazing Eau de Parfum
Perfumer: Jo Anne Bassett
Man oh man has this got oakmoss. Real oakmoss! I love it! It comes leaping out from my skin and it’s unmistakable. On reading the letter that came with “Amazing,” I see that the perfumer started building the fragrance around an oakmoss absolute. 
After the citrus/oakmoss calms down a bit, the florals begin to peek out. There is a spiciness too, a bit of the kind that gets up your nose and tickles -- but just a little. One ingredient I didn’t recognize was muhuhu. It’s a wood essence, something like sandalwood but darker. (I had thought I’d smelled sandalwood, but it must be this instead.) It’s sometimes called “African Sandalwood.”
I would call this a mossy citrus with floral notes. I haven’t yet worn it all day, but my guess is that the oakmoss will make it last. Another perfume that could be worn anywhere, by anyone -- accessible, well-blended, uplifting.
Notes: Oakmoss, cassie, cinnamon, vintage jasmine, lemon verbena, rose otto, muhuhu, ginger, yuzu, rhododendron, benzoin, violet leaf, cinnamon leaf and “19 others,” all outlaws.
Unisex. Sits close to the skin. Longevity t.b.a, but I’m guessing it will be good.
Outlaw Perfumes: The Outroduction

And so I come to the end of this week of testing these artisanal perfumes, researching  the ingredients and writing about them. I just have a few conclusions:
Compulsive risk-taker that I am, I have tested all of these on skin, and some pretty delicate skin at that! And, although my skin is sensitive and prone to rashes, not one of these perfumes gave me even the slightest rash, even after sun exposure (admittedly, winter sun.) I examined the sites where I’d put the perfumes with a jeweler’s loup and saw no redness, no irritation, nothing. Just sayin’. I mean, I know it’s not unbiased and all, like the research the IFRA sponsors is. 
Oh, and I’ve sniffed them too, every kind of sniff from quick and repeated to deep and long inhalations, drawing air up into my sinuses. And haven't had so much as a sneeze or stuffy nose, either.
I like these perfumes, a lot. I sometimes wish they had more sillage. I’m not sure if there is any way around that when using botanicals. But heaven knows there are plenty of room-clearers out there in the mass perfume market; there is plenty of space for Subtle.
Finally: One more time for emphasis: these are perfect for the modern no-perfume office environment. They are aristocratic in lineage and attitude. They speak in a low, well-modulated voice, and they never screech or laugh too loud (or chew gum, for that matter).  If “Angel” is Lady GaGa, these are Grace Kelly. You get the mood-elevating effects of a personal fragrance, without having to put up with cubicle-dwelling harpies intent upon removing all pleasure from the world singling you out as an offender. And wouldn’t that be nice?
Thanks to all the perfumers, and bloggers, and especially to Anya McCoy and Elena Vosnaki for putting this together!
As always, leave a comment here to be entered in the drawing for a bottle of “Belle Starr” by Artemisia. I’ll do the drawing and announce the winner tomorrow (Tuesday) November 23rd by 11 a.m. Eastern US Standard Time.


queen_cupcake said...

Thanks for this review. I am really enjoying reading about the various Outlaw Perfumes. As a lover of mostly vintage perfumes, I do believe I can now shift some of my attention (and funds) over to these fine botanical fragrances. Sillage is not such a problem in my work place (or is it, and they just haven't worked up the nerve to tell me?) Smells like a mini-renaissance...

tarleisio said...

First of all, I'd like to thank you for bringing this to my attention. I was aware of natural perfumes, of course, and the IFRA restrictions, but I wasn't aware that so many great perfumers were doing such great things - all with "banned" substances!

Something about the sheer subversiveness appeals to my inner (and never completely dead!) punk/rebel - so naturally, I had to blog about it, too!

I've really enjoyed this series, and look forward to reading more!

I wonder about the sillage, though - might that be helped by spraying it on hair and/or clothing?

Geordan said...

I love this concept! Looking forward to trying.



Carole said...

I have read in a review on line just this past week that Indie perfumers are not to be discounted by the Large Mfg. Perfume Houses! They are a force to be reconned with in competing for sales! I agree... Natural handcrafted perfumes are so pure and divine that one can get easily addicted to their loveliness! Thank you for the excellent review!

Carole said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Isa said...

Thanks for all the reviews.
All of them have been really interesting and I have learnt a lot about natural fragrances, restricted notes and independent lines.

I'm starting to know the world of natural perfumes and the artistry of the noses who create them.

I hope all this helps to change the IFRA restrictions.

Bloody Frida said...

I'm soo behind in my blog reading yet wanted to jump in and say Amazing sounds well Amazing! Thank you!!!