• Anastasia Pentias

TBN: Fragrance Edition- Maison Francis Kurkdjian Fragrance Wardrobe For Her Review

Francis Kurkdjian is my favourite 'nose' (that is industry-speak for an expert perfumer, a creator of fragrances). I had already been loving his scents for years (Baccarat Rouge 540, Narciso Rodriguez For Her etc.) but on a trip to Geneva, I had an epiphany.

I spent time sampling more of his perfumes and I was spellbound. They were like elusive, intricate pieces of art but at the same time very literal and grounded: 'Petit Matin' indeed smelled like early morning. 'Grand Soir', true to name, was a glorious night out on the town.

The thought stuck in my mind that I wanted to real-life test-drive everything. Not the standard department store, multi-scent spray in all available parts of your arms and at the end of the day smell like a carnival. No. These deserved respect. I felt Kurkdjian had something to say and I wanted to stop and listen. Funny then, that when I found a set of eight 11ml sprays of his best-selling women's fragrances available to order, at: https://bit.ly/2SowKDv, when I received it, it came with a note saying almost exactly that:

'Perfume as a work of art is a transmitted expression of intimacy'

Francis Kurkdjian.

His fragrances are indeed intimate. They are warm, inviting and they make you feel good. The funniest part for me (and I don't know what it is- a kind of scent Tourette's?) is that when I smell a Kurkdjian scent for the very first time, some sort of expletive leaves my mouth. It hits me like a train. Too much similtaneous beauty.

And now, eight great beauties in front of me. I tested each one at least for two full days before writing this. At 140 euros (which is considerable, I am aware) for eight Kurkdjian gems and a total of 88ml, this is a very fair deal. It's a brilliant way to try before you buy- ordering a full bottle is an investment. They all last well into the night, they don't disappear on you mid-day.

I also brought these to a dinner with close friends. They had been warned in advance to not wear any perfume, as this set contains six unisex fragrances and we could all dive in. We had a blast with these.

I adored -ADORED- all but one, Amyris Femme, whose notes combination is always very blah on my skin. I gave it to my mother and on her, it is spectacular.

These are the lighter ones in the set (but still very potent):

And these are the heavyweights. When you wear these, people know you've entered the room and they look forward to you coming closer.

Below, is my list of favourites from most to least favourite.

1. Oud Satin Mood: Heavy, heady, sexy, strange, beautiful, sophisticated, otherworldly. This is officially the most beautiful thing my nose had the pleasure of enjoying.

2. Baccarat Rouge 540: well, this has been my favourite for a year already and is now dethroned but always glorious. Sweet, strong, swirling, imperial, grounded, one-of-a-kind. You've never smelled anything like it. Ever.

3. feminin Pluriel: amazing, piercing, a magic-carpet-ride floral, a new interpretation on the popular feminine bouquet, keeps you sniffing your wrists like an addict. This is the edgy girl's floral.

4. Aqua Vitae: the perfect blend of citrus fruits with musk. Very dynamic, strong, propels you forward, equally suited for women and men. If you walk into a meeting wearing this, you're closing that deal.

5. A la rose: I hate a literal version of rose on me, but THIS.. Oh man.. This is the only rose (along with YSL's original Paris) that keeps me coming back for more. It's grounded by the wood note and is instantly interesting, unlike other rose scents.

6. Aqua Celestia: zesty, floral, sparkly, peppery and sweet, this is a perfect every day fragrance that no one can mistake for a mass market scent.

7. Aqua Universalis: I love this, so refined. But to me it lacks a certain feminine nuance which I need in a scent. On my husband it's very fresh but manly and unique.

8. Amyris femme: This was the only miss for me, it turned a boring and annoying floral carpet on me. But this kind of light bouquet always does, so I experimented and gave it to my mom. On her, as I said, divine. Womanly, mature, distinct.

Very much recommended as a gift to yourself or others, even to co-buy with a friend and share. This set is perfection.

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