September 8, 2013

Dark Perfumes

Antero Pires Dark Sky, Wikipedia Commons
Lately I find myself turning to the darkest perfumes I can find.  There's something about a deep dark perfume that is both sophisticated and comforting, that creates a deep space in which to both curl up and rest and also expand into uncharted and spacious distances.  Modern, romantic, vast, there are as many variations of such darknesses as there are perfume tastes and perfumers.

I fell under the spell of Norne extrait by Slumberhouse on exposure to its simulation of eerie night air, moving through the darkness of a primeval conifer forest.  It both creates an enormous space within it and remains intimate, clinging close to the skin as I find myself repeatedly getting hits of a black forest at full strength, for hours. The perfume is strong and stable from a composition of nothing but fully natural tree resin absolutes as base notes, without the distraction of any top notes at all.  An experience like the darkest green of deep mosses, moist lichens, tree resins, and fir needles releasing their fragrance as we walk among them, this perfume  makes for a sense of personal connection to the magnificent aspects of a forest's true nature, as exciting and uplifting as the howls of a wolf pack in the night. It's as refreshing as the dense fragrance laden oxygen created by acres of ancient fir trees.  It might be considered conventionally masculine, but I and other women I know love to wear it.
I was immediately smitten by Black from Comme des Garcons, which even as a eau de Cologne is a strong and heady kind of darkness.   As composed of a black leather jacket scented by exposure to Japanese incense, after a day riding a motorcycle whose hot metal body and tires run on a heat softened asphalt road beside drying vetiver fields of hay, then a quick brush past a stand of burnt birch woods still leaking beads of tar.  I get clean smoke from a tablet of charcoal used to burn incense, and find a liquid drop of graphite at the core.  There is a touch of black pepper and black licorice to start, which opens the nose so you get the full effects immediately. It feels like a modern black incense cousin to the CdG series of traditional incense styles depicted by perfumes such as Avignon and Kyoto.

Body Made Luminous from Scent by Alexis is a  natural deep chocolate over fossilized amber and mysterious blossoms, that starts with a strong burst of serotonin inducing cocoa (it has recently been discovered that the scent of chocolate can increase a sense of well being and calm).  The chocolate burns off, leaving a little behind to reveal a soothing dark amber muskiness.  As I fell asleep with it on my arms, I found the floral bouquet unfolding at the last stage of this fragrance to be subtle, complex and as satisfying as a sweet dream.  This perfume is steeped in a sense of the body's appetites and heat, and moves softly toward a gentle and graceful resolution. To paraphrase the words of the perfumer Alexis Karl, this ultra-limited edition perfume was inspired by Foucault’s Utopian Body; to celebrate that hidden and seductive intimate landscape. 

I purchased the perfumes described, other than the sample provided by the perfumer for Body Made Luminous, which I consider to be a sister scent to the ultra limited edition perfume series Requiem for the Immortal, which I have posted on before.

Please follow the links above for information on prices and procurement of these perfumes.
Copyright 2013 Lucy Raubertas, All Rights Reserved.


tarleisio said...

Something about the deepening dark of autumn likewise sends me hunting down those dark, dense perfumes to enjoy. As always, Lucy - your words are like the very best - and darkest! - chocolate for the soul!

Lucy Raubertas said...

Thank you dear Tarleisio, I am all for gathering a Society for the Appreciation of Dark Perfumes. xo