Monday, June 11, 2012

Parfums de Nicolaï L’Eau à la Folie Eau de Toilette

When I read the notes of Parfums de Nicolaï's newest introduction, L’Eau à la Folie Eau de Toilette ($115 or $45), I know I would love it. I ordered "blind," something fragrance experts will tell you not to do. "Sample first," is the wisdom gleaned from many disappointed perfume fans. Sometimes, I just can't. I have to have my hands on something right away, and with my love for Parfums de Nicolaï, I knew it would be a safe bet. It turned out to be more than safe. I love it!

The creator of this desirable perfume is Patricia Nicolai, a woman with fragrance in her blood. The grand-daughter of Pierre Guerlain, she was trained by Jean-Paul Guerlain and worked extensively in the corporate fragrance world before realizing her dream: a small, family-owned company where she could express her artistry in her scents, without having to deal with a committee.

Her fragrances, made only with the finest materials, are full of subtlety, nuance, and seamless transitions as they develop on the skin. Delicate and complex, they have earned her unanimous respect in the small world of French perfumery. She was the first woman to be awarded the prize of Best International Perfumer from the French Society of Perfumers. Now that I own about 10 of her fragrances, I know why.

Her latest, L’Eau à la Folie Eau de Toilette, is categorized at Beautyhabit as a citrus, floral, and fruit. That hits three of my four favorite genres. Here's how it's described.

Fresh and sparkling Eau Fraîche for summer. Exotic and tender top note, then a taste of Andalus Mojito [a cocktail], with ginger seeds and red flowers. Egyptian jasmine make it elegant and opulent. Young and dynamic fragrance with woody notes.

What do I detect? Citrus, flowers, and fruits - with little of the woodiness that can weigh down a scent to my nose. This one leaves me in the garden, with no detours to the woods. The fragrance is not linear, meaning it morphs over time, opening with a very zingy, appealing, and fresh scent, starts to dry down into a gorgeous floral after a half-hour or so, and then lasts for five (maybe six) hours on my skin as a soft reminder of its first few hours. There's a little tame spice, provided by pink peppercorn and juniper berries, I've read. It is overwhelmingly pleasing - actually intoxicating, since I can't keep my nose off my arm. If you share my tastes in fragrances, you're going to love this one.

I purchased my L’Eau à la Folie Eau de Toilette at Beautyhabit, and I'm delighted that I ordered the larger size. It's a better value, and I've got more to enjoy this summer and in the months beyond!

Photo courtesy of Beautyhabit

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