Lace benzoin tears are a puzzling "fragrance note" in Gwen Stefani's Harajuku Lovers Jingle G fragrance. (An unimpressive introduction; if it were a note in Fath's Iris Gris, I bet you're all be sitting up straight with a new found attention in your eyes. All the same...) Several people online have been furtively throwing sideways glances in understandable puzzlement over this. Let's present an answer today and hope that some official reply comes soon.
how misleading fragrance notes lists can be might be assuming it's all purple prose imaginings of a feverish copywriter. Others might suppose it's a new aromachemical with a poetic name for a change.
"Lace Benzoin Tears" is in all probability a misspelling of Gum Lacc.Benzoin which appears for the actual well-known benzoin resin in some literature (notably by the Royal Society of London). Because there’s a dot after the c, and it’s in Italic, people mistook it for e and reproduced it. It's now everywhere on the Net, but curiously ONLY in relation to Harajuku Lovers Jingle G (just Google "Lace Benzoin Tears") and NOT from Stefani's official site either.
Lac. comes from the Latin, meaning to lacerate, to tear. Benzoin also typically comes in "tears", i.e. drops of resin which solidify resembling little lumps, like crystallized tears.
Then there’s also “bois dentelle” i.e laget, .lagetto/ lace-bark tree (Lagetta of Jussieu). So there just might be a comma missing in the list [i.e. lace (tree), benzoin tears etc.]. That would also make sense, though I find it highly unlikely because bois dentelle is nearing extinction.
I don’t know if the Harajuku fragrance is using either, though, I've never smelled it. But it's an interesting hypothesis, right? If anyone has smelled it, please let us known if it has a benzoin note.
Related reading on Perfume Shrine: Resinous & Balsamic in Fragrances (with notes on benzoin)
Photo of Anna Karina in Jean Luc Godard's Vivre sa vie film (1962)