Wednesday, April 19, 2023

Roja Dove Diaghilev: fragrance review

 Much of our information on the particularities of Sergey Diaghilev the man come from the many exhibitions and press catalogues which have been relying on the lasting aftermath of Les Ballet Russes in Europe. Apparently the story of the Diaghilev by Roja Dove fragrance is more complex. 

The fragrance began as an Eau de Parfum concentration as attested by the older advertising images for the Victoria & Albert museum exhibitions and lectures. It then moved to the uniform "whiskey carafe" style of extrait de parfum bottles in a more concentrated form. It is indeed the Eau de Parfum which I had first tried years ago and proclaimed it inwardly "a Mitsouko analogue." (referencing the famous Guerlain perfume from 1919)

The reference is not lost upon those who know a thing or two about the man through the bibliography on his life and opus. Serge Diaghilev was enamoured with Guerlain's Mitsouko during the height of his career with Les Ballets Russes and used to drench his curtains with it. Drenching the curtains in perfume....sounds so decadent and eccentric, right? The impression must have been something of an autumnal twilight, just as the Guerlain scent segues into the forest floor after immersing you in a liqueur like the fuzzy skin of golden nectarous peaches ripened in the sun... Charlie Chaplin was also a fan. There's something about it that makes creative juices flow.


In a way, both Mitsouko by Guerlain and Diaghilev by Roja Dove bring a sense of awakening to the senses upon smelling them. They're both lush, fruity chypre perfumes, and they're both like a beauty coming back from a long-forgotten slumber, like the princess sleeping in the Sleeping Beauty ballet that Les Ballets Russes performed.


The transition from the citrusy top note is as smooth in Diaghilev as in the Guerlain, with the linalyl acetate of bergamot smoothing the pathway to the core of the chypre skeleton, and piquant notes of spices and herbs (cloves, peppery jolt, tarragon) give a lively burst alongside the plush. The spicy component is a counterpart to the fruity and floral aspects. It's never a flat scent; it's always bronze-y and lush.


The modern re-issue took the structure of the Eau de Parfum and gave it in Extrait de Parfum an immensity of duration that far surpasses the 24-hour mark on skin. The old bases like Persicol have tremendous tenacity and the synthetic civet feels like it opens up the best elements, attaching itself to the fruity and floral aspects and making them extend into infinity.

1 comment:

  1. ah, those older guerlains are magical... does the rioja dove perfume have significant differences from the "mitsouko"? it sounds very similar.


Type your comment in the box, choose the Profile option you prefer from the drop down menu, below text box (Anonymous is fine too!) and hit Publish.
And you're set!

This Month's Popular Posts on Perfume Shrine