Thursday, October 11, 2007

Daisy by Marc Jacobs: fragrance review and lucky draw!

If you doubt your eyes, you can never doubt your nose, it seems. It is unmistakeably capable of discerning that which the promotional material might deny. It has the ability to get not only molecules stuck in its receptive velcro but also memories, associations and musings. And it was thus that Daisy by Marc Jacobs entered my consiousness: as the memory of another scent.
Marc, darling, I know you have Sofia Coppola as a muse; you have made this clear many times from the bags to the shoes to the perfumes. I wonder does she use Light Blue by Dolce & Gabanna too apart from her other favourites? Because frankly this is what your latest reminds me of vividly; oh, so vividly!

At first I did a double take not willing to believe what I had read about it. I had even posted about its notes which come in quick succession; like a fussilade in the face of ugliness they read: top notes of wild strawberry, violet leaves and ruby red grapefruit, a heart of gardenia, violet and jasmine petals on a base of vanilla and musk.
And yet, if we compare with the notes for Light Blue: Sicilian Citron, Bluebell, Granny Smith apple, Jasmine Sambac, Bamboo, White rose, Cedar wood, Amber, Musk ....what do we get? Close to nil...
Because apart from jasmine and musk (which surely are in about 99.9999% of all feminine perfumes) I fail to discern what makes those two so similar. Granted, the citrusy burst of Light Blue and the woodiness of its base set it apart (and probably are to blame for the accolades it's getting right and left).
Basically a classic in the making, Light Blue has been selling crazily and especially in the Mediterranean countries it's something akin to putting on your instant personal gelateria with icy cold smoothies to enjoy all day long. It gives the impression that if you lick it off your arm your tongue will climax.

The tendency to follow in a bestseller's shoes is not new of course and the examples of perfumes who did just that is legion - like the Antichrist, one might humorously say. This is neither the space nor the time to talk about it, we have other posts to concern ourselves with that in the near future. It is enough that fairly recently Moschino came out with something that is also quite close to Light Blue: his I Love Love ~arguably one of the silliest names in the known universe, yet a decent enough little potion.
Of course if we compare notes, we see that it features: orange, lemon, grapefruit, redcurrant, tea rose, lily of the valley, cinnamon leaves, tanaka wood, cedarwood, musk. Ah...a bit closer. But still!
Marc in a rare confessionary mood divulged that
“I don’t want to get too artsy about inspiration, but there is a sense memory, a reference, in fragrances”
Uh huh...thought so.

Not that Daisy smells exactly like Light Blue because it doesn't. And what would be the use of it, if it did? This is of course perfume no man's land as no one wants to answer this question it seems. But give a well-known recipe a little twist and it will sell like cupcakes. This tendency has resulted in an homogenization of the market that is to its detriment, alas, yet perfumers and companies persist regardless.

The promotional material for Daisy reads:
"a sparkling floral scent - fresh and feminine, with a touch of whimsy. A modern vintage that embodies effortless charm."

I have to admit that it is a very nice, inoffensive, pleasant little scent that would be a lovely foray of a budding into womanhood young thing that loves to have an adorably pretty bottle on her dresser. Because Marc, really, you outdid yourself after those spartan Splash bottles of yours! This is sooooo cute, so girly, so fashionably whimsical that fans will come in droves to the stores eager to give you their cash for this.
Three little daisies of vinyl with a center of metallic gold adorn the cap, with a little matching "belt" underneath it. It's much better in person, because the petals are bendable and soft. And it makes me wonder why Marc was reportedly not content with it and thinking of changing it a bit. That would be miscalculation, Marc, I must warn you!

Of course daisies do not smell per se. But who gives a damn? This is fantasy land and Marc is saying it himself:
“Daisies don’t smell, but I wanted to evoke the feeling that you get when you see them — happy and youthful. My gardenia and jasmine scents [Marc Jacobs for women and Blush Marc Jacobs, respectively] are more singular and definitely more ‘designer’ scents. I don’t want to say they’re older, but they’re more sophisticated.”

I admit that Blush is my choice out of his mentioned scents for its crystalline transparency that weaves its spell to you despite your best efforts and his Winter Amber Splashwas powdery goodness to me. I don't know however if I would term them terribly sophisticated. It might have to do with different perceptions.
Daisy is abstract, beginning on a tang of berries -a very popular note in noughties perfumery- seguing on to a floral theme of indeterminate fugue that ascertains Alberto Morillas's artistry, but perhaps betrays his innovative spirit (his list of creations is fascinating: click here). The sustained note of light musk on a lightly vanillic bed stays on the skin poised for hours.

All in all, Daisy is not a bad case of a fruity floral, if only because it is not overly sweet. And this is an achievement nowadays. It is sure to please and it smells good and will earn you compliments from people, most assuredly. If it comes in a too cute container, it's not its fault. It was drawn that way!

Daisy comes in an eau de toilette concentration at 1.7oz/50ml at 55$ and 3.4oz/100ml at 70$, as well as a shower gel (30$), a body lotion (32$) and a rich body butter (35$).Available from major department stores.

And for our lucky readers I have a very cute mini bottle of it available for one winner of a draw. Please post in the comment section if you want to enter the draw and good luck!!

Chypres will resume as scheduled later on...

Pic of eye from athinorama, pic of bottle from Marc Jacobs campaign


  1. Hi E, dear. Strange that you get this association with Light Blue.. To me the two are really far removed from each other: Not only do I find none of LB's apple-y, cedary goodness in Daisy, but also LB has depth and warmth while Daisy lies there like a cold film on the skin. Strange!

    Anyway, I'd love to be entered in your drawing! I collect minis as you recall :) Btw, I saw a different Daisy bottle lately, I wonder if it is the one you allude to in your post? The flowers were on the belt instead of on the cap and they were not bendy! Bizarre, no? Too, I have seen Daisy come in two different boxes!
    Have a wonderful afternoon, dearest.

  2. Daisy is a pleasant enough scent and I do think it's better than the run-of-the-mill fruity/floral. The adorable bottle sets it apart. I'd love to have a mini, so please enter me in the drawing!

  3. Mike P.21:42

    I found no love in Daisy. Marc's best scent IMO is his Ivy Splash - the best use of moss and mint ever combined, it smells like sucking on a candy cane in the forest. Magical stuff and moons away from Daisy's simplicity.

    The bottle is adorable. Perhaps I could empty it out and refill it with Ivy?

    Sign me up!

  4. Dear D, of course you're in the draw (and yes, I do recall your collection).

    They're not exactly alike like I said, but to me they're cousins on very, very friendly terms ;-)
    I have to say that I find Light Blue cool though and not warm; so maybe that's why we perceive those differently. At any rate,LB is more distinctive.

    I haven't seen the second bottle version, but I read that Marc was thinking of making changes. I find the bendable petals adorable :-)

  5. Dear Iris,
    I will!
    I also think it's better than most fruity florals. Inoffensive but not bad, for sure.

  6. Dear Mike,
    I haven't tried Ivy Splash (maybe I should, you make it sound great!!)
    You're in :-)

  7. Heather01:35

    that mini must be adorable, could you enter me as well? I haven't sniffed Daisy yet, but I'm curious. Thank you!

  8. Of course you're in, Heather.
    It's a cute mini!

  9. Anonymous18:12

    Thanks for the review. To me, Marc is often spot-on in his delivery and rendition of scents and emotions. Not particularly original, nor complex, but toward the top of the mainstream dept store frags, IMHO.
    Please enter me in the drawing.

  10. Cindy N,
    you're welcome. Thanks for the insight; I did like his Amber quite a bit!
    You're in :-)

  11. My personal opinion is that Light Blue became so successful because of its unisex nature (like the CK and CK1 thing that did so well). Also a very easy scent to choose for men looking for a gift. The reference to Blue, for one thing, men love blue, don't they, and also the lemon citrus scent, that is very appealing to many men and also for the mass market (and easy to wear to work) but this has also the D&G logo so people feel ok about getting it as a gift because it has that label...Fruity is I think not going to have the same impact (at least for now, maybe 5 years from now things will be different)...

  12. LucY dear,

    those are very wise comments you make about LB. Thank you.
    You do have great points (even about the colour choice by men! it seems a little society-conditioned, doesn't it?)It always made an impression how men complimented LB on women, evidently not all of themt go for the foody vanillas I so often hear women go on about.

    Fruity is not as distinctive, that's true.

  13. Anonymous18:04

    I love it and I love the exfoliating shower gel, it does leave pleasant memories with those special ones in your life, I would love to read a review on his Lola the bottles are both so pretty to me, I think that's what got me more than the smell, and then I fell in love with the smell. MJ always delivers in my opinion ask my significant other :)


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