Animalic perfumes are back. This may help to explain the popularity of challenging scents like Papillon’s Salome with its initially furry and glandular notes. ( I also enjoyed Bonker’s wonderful interview with Liz Moores of Papillon who keeps her snake collection in drawers! And no, that is not a spoonerism of mine. She keeps them in doors in drawers or racks) If the taste of the public is changing and the sterile field of synthetic fragrance is breached by scales or fur or fins, then Salome might as well be the perfume to do the breaching, although if you ask me, Mandy Aftel’s Cuir de Gardenia did this just as well, and I personally liked Anya’s Garden Enticing which also included a strong animal note in natural musk. You could say that, from a niche point of view, this was the year that re-established the connection between our skins and our scents.
Certain perfume families have always maintained that link and I refer to chypres and leathers here. If you wore those you always kept that chiaroscuro of prettiness and relative ickiness in impasto on yourself . Your perfume read that life, and maybe you too, were complex and had different motivations and activities on different days. Some days you hibernated, some days you hunted and gathered, some days you groomed, and some days you played. Continue reading