Wednesday, February 05, 2020


Under an essay in which I mentioned Anita Mui (Voluptuous Fragrances, reader Cecily asked "Out of curiosity, are there any scents on the market you would describe as 'voluptuous'?"

Well. It has been a very long time since I smelled a woman. Seeing as my faint whiff of tobacco and the fires of hell chases the poor dears away from me, and as a smoker my nose buds are not functioning at top form. That latter situation is perfect for a city like San Francisco, where many of the downtown intersections pong of sewer, and several streets have their own idiosyncratic odours. Hang Ah Alley, for instance, last night reeked of riotous drunken excess meeting reality.

But in any case, I do not go around sniffing at the tender gender. It would be bad form to do so. As well as get me clobbered over the head.
But intellectually, I would indeed like to.

It sounds zesty and heroic.

In response to Cecily: Very likely candidates: Black Opium, by YSL. Paris, by YSL. Crystal Noir, by Versace. Perfumes with citrus and spices top notes, floral middle notes, wood or moss base notes. If it smells recognizably of coconut, candy, or Hello Kitty, it's right out.

Besides coconut, other smells to avoid are patchouli and almond, and an excess of vanilla.

Good, but not in excess: jasmine, cedar, rose.

Sandalwood can be nice too.

As an afterthought, crowded San Francisco buses are the worst place in the world for scents. If you are lucky, White Flower Lotion (白花油) and other analgesic balms on the old people in the front, with hints of body spray from the hunkus in the back; if unlucky, marijuana smoke, drug addict, unwashed Eury tourist, Hang Ah Alley, and Market Street.

Curry, plus Latakia and Virginia pipe tobaccos, always smell delightful. But not dumped all over the person as personal perfumes. And roasting or freshly brewed coffee in the morning also. Bacon too.

NOTE: Readers may contact me directly:
All correspondence will be kept in confidence.

1 comment:

Cecily said...

In response to your fragrance preferences, I would like to recommend one relatively recent addition to the market.

Psychoanalysis, by Bella Freud. It is a unisex fragrance. Top notes: neroli and petitgrain. Middle notes: tobacco and tobacco blossom. Base note: Leather.

Unfortunately it has a rather high price point, but the scent profile is certainly intriguing.

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