Wednesday, July 26, 2017

In the grip of a heatwave

Melting doesn't beging to describe it global warming be darned. We had a cool May and a rainy July to only suffer through a tremendously hot July. The question of fragrance only makes me queasy most days. However there are a few respites.

beach in Halkidiki (Greece) via


Contrary to the perennial line-up of Light Blue (D&G) and Infusion d'Iris (Prada) which so many local women choose to wear on the hottest days, I opt for biting green chypres with piercing fangs. Chanel No.19 fragrance, especially in the less rosy and more vetiver-rich eau de toilette version, manages to sit on my bosom with the starchy iris of its heart and make me feel dry and groomed even when I can almost feel the droplets of sweat collect on the base of my throat. Curiously enough the heat makes it bloom and feel terribly sexy as well, with the bitter galbanum reacting perfectly to cut through the humidity like a scimitar. Bandit Eau de Parfum (Piguet), on the other hand, cuts with the startling bite of a bullwhip, and that's such an unlikely relief when it's hot as hell and you need that slap to wake up and get on with your day! If most people need pick-me-ups when drunk, consider me one (among others) who needs a taser when it's hot and humid. Other fragrances which serve me well in the heat are Sycomore by Chanel, Philosykos by Diptyque (review here and there's some Philosykos history background too) and Guerlain's Vetiver for men.

Much like the Spanish Inquisition, as immortalised in the words of Monty Python, my weapons of choice are "fear and surprise, surprise and fear." They seem to work pretty well.

And for those fully intending on embracing their sweat there are cumin and sweaty-like fragrances which the PerfumeShrine highlighted a while ago...

17 comments:

  1. chypres and anything vetiver are my go-to scents in hot weather too. they just feel right!

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    1. Vetiver is definitely extremely cooling and worth finding the perfect one. Wonder what yours is ;)

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  2. Opus V (Amouage) and Covet (Zoologist) individually and mixed are the scents I use this year in the heat. No flowers, coconut, chocolate or caramel notes will do! Also choose Vent Vert (vintage Balmain) and Jicky, vintage and current formulations (Guerlain) as clean, refreshing scents.

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    1. Civet by Zoologist, not Covet!!

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    2. BRAVE choice all the same!

      I do agree with your Guerlain and Balmain picks as they do tend to wear very light and bracing.

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  3. Hi I have a query
    If oxidized ethanol alcohol it does not harm the human

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    1. The question doesn't really make lots of sense. Ethanol is alcohol and even oxidized alcohol doesn't really do any harm? Unless you digest it or something but surely that's not the question?

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  4. I have seen on TV that you are having shocking heat and bush fires... I hope you are safe .
    I miss Goutal's Camille - such a lovely green scent that worked so well in our heat.Never sicky and a beautiful cool feeling with every puff. Wish they would bring it back.

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    1. Thankfully we're OK still. But lots of disaster. All Med countries suffer from this phenomenon in the summer and I know you've had your share down under.
      I'm miffed with Goutal for discontinuing some of the oldies: can't find Camille or Cier anymore. Do enjoy it!

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  5. Green teas, citrus, mint, aldehydes, and light synthetics for me. The newly re-released Soda and perennial fave Odeur 53 by Comme des Garçons, Menthe Fraîche by Heely, Aldhèyx by LM Parfums, and, of course, Eau de Cologne Impériale by Guerlain (not to mention any number of other eaux de colognes) are my go-to scents for hot weather.

    As for Zoologist's Civet, Nonnanina3 is made of stronger stuff than I. Fighting fire with fire makes sense, but it would far too heady a battle for me.

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    1. Thanks for all those mentions; looks like I need to explore some of them.

      I'd think that a lot depends on the kind of heat one gets concerning the second part of your comment. It's different when you have dry heat and moderate to strong winds. It's altogether another thing if there's high humidity alonside the intense heat and no leaf moves...(The second situation is "kill me now").

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  6. Spraying and respraying Hermes Eau d'Orange Verte liberally in heatwawes. The green leaves and light mossy notes contrasting the tangy bitterorange is incredible relaxing and refreshing.

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    1. Oh that one is so classy! Excellent choice.

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  7. I too love bitter greens in summer! Bandit but also Cabochard parfum from a vintage mini. To a lesser degree of relevance, I enjoy A Scent and Parfums de Nicolai's Eau Chic. The later, I could own the giant splash bottle she offers! Even Aromatics Elixir does well in heat.

    Of course, I have summer days where I fight fire with fire and wear Shalimar parfum. :)

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    1. Oh definitely. Great thinking on the AE too. I find it's very cool in chatacter; it leaves the loveliest "pine needles powder" scent around.

      As to the grand Guerlain classic I'd love to hear how you apply in the heatwave! Sounds tempting

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  8. Ashley18:37

    This will seem strange but I love Youth Dew bath oil in the summer, in the bath and applied neat. There is something very herbal and almost bracing to me about it. In fact I really only ever wear it in the heat of the summer.

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    1. It doesn't surprise me quite as much as I'd have thought a few years back; I have found out that most oils do tend to stay close to the skin and why not wear something fabulous like that if so?
      The resinous base it has is not unthought of for the heat. So good on you! (The spray does tend to become too much though easily.)

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