Thursday, December 16, 2010

Yuzu Fou by Parfum d'Empire

'Tis the season to buy fragrance, Fa la la la la, la la la la. In that mood, I did something uncharacteristic: while shopping online, I purchased a fragrance that wasn't predictable. In my world, predictable is floral - or fruity floral, not citrus. Although I have, wear, and love citrus fragrances, I prefer to sample them in person before purchasing. Knowing that categorizing a fragrances in a genre can oversimplify it, I threw caution to the wind and ordered Yuzu Fou at LuckyScent (where I paid $77, although other sites tell me the retail price is $110). I love it!

Some psychologists have strayed into scent typing, describing the characteristics of our personalities that make us gravitate toward certain fragrance types. Most citrus fragrances are light, zippy, and effervescent. They are often considered unisex scents, appealing to pragmatic, strong-minded, decisive, and athletic people. As someone who considers herself to have those characteristics - all except "athletic," which I dropped over the years as my knees deteriorated - I was probably a ringer for Yuzu Fou's description.

Inspired by the Empire of the Rising Sun, Yuzu Fou is an energetic fragrance composed around yuzu, a sparkling Japanese citrus fruit. For the designer, Yuzu Fou (“Crazy Yuzu”) is the occasion to invite us into an avant-garde, futuristic world of edgy electronic music, effervescent mangas, and minimalist architecture. It's a sparkling green, zesty, citrus fragrance in which yuzu is paired with kumquat, bigarade orange, mint, neroli, verbena absolute, green woods, and white musk.

Not too long ago, I flipped for another scent with a yuzu note (Les Nuits d'Izu Eau de Parfum), so I decided to explore this fruit in another pairing. The vibrant yuzu (a citrus grown in Japan and other Asian countries), combined with the raw bigarade orange (also known as the Seville orange), gives Yuzu Fou a grand opening that's fresh, invigorating, sparkling. It's complex, though. A spray of Yuzu Fou doesn't bring to mind peeling an orange. Rather, it draws in the nose for a sample of the other notes that lend the fragrance its complexity. The melange is very pleasing - and long-lasting. It says with me almost all day.

I love the packaging of Yuzu Fou. The tall, slender, cylindrical bottle, topped with a golden cap and adorned with a green label, is simple - minimal. The bottle comes in a cardboard tube with a pop off metal lip. It's all recyclable, although I was tempted to use the tube to hold eyeliners.

Anyone who equates citrus with summer will find Yuzu Fou the perfect citrus for winter. It can hold its own at a time when we look for more depth from our scents. The only problem will be finding Yuzu Fou. In the short time since I ordered it from LuckyScent, it became "unavailable." I'll have to find out where you can purchase it; I'll add an update to this feature when I do.

I'm very excited about trying other fragrances from Parfum d'Empire, a collection created by perfumer Marc-Antoine Corticchiato. The fragrances scents pay homage to Napoleon, Josephine, Russian Tsars, Alexander the Great, and the Ottoman Empire. This blend of history and perfume has resulted in what LuckyScent calls imaginative and unusual scents - as sumptuous as they are elegant. One spritz is enough to carry you away, to the times long past and lands far, far away. Fa la la la la, la la la la!

Photo courtesy of LuckyScent and Wikipedia


Anonymous said...

More temptation? A zinging scent to brighten our frozen midwinter and re-energise our batteries? Not easy to resist.

off to browse ...

cheerio, Anna in Edinburgh

Charlestongirl said...

Hi Anna!

Let us know where you find it - hope you love!

Leigh said...

Can you tell me how it compares to
ORANGE SANGUINE by Atelier Cologne?
(from NM)
All the best -

Unknown said...

i have a love-hate relationship with citrus fragrances. on one hand, i like refreshing scents, especially during summer. on the other hand, most citrus scents are usually not as complex as any other and i get tired of them easily. never smelled yuzu but the notes sound intriguing!

Charlestongirl said...

Leigh, I adore Orange Sanguine, but they are very different. While wearing Orange Sanguine is like wearing a freshly peeled orange, wearing Yuzu Fou is like wearing a crisp, but more complex fragrance. OS dries down as oranges. Yuzu Fou dries down as a green musk. To me, they aren't at all similar.

Charlestongirl said...

Anna, this one's very different from the typical citrus. If you think about Jo Malone Grapefruit - or Orange Sanguine - they are "typical" citrus fragrances, light, zesty, and refreshing. Yuzu Fou is a different animal. While you get that initial blast of fruity effervescence, it's tempered by the other notes, making it much more complex.

Leigh said...

Thanks for your input - I am currently looking into "orangey" scents.

Unknown said...

ooh, i think i like the fruity-citrusy combo! sounds like a scent i might enjoy for summer

Charlestongirl said...

Anna, you would enjoy this one any time of year. I think it may be my best citrus for winter.