December 4, 2017

Flowers in Winter - Libertine Fragrance

Frozen flower photo from the Pinterest Board of Tom Holle

Libertine Fragrance is a small perfume house in Canada. These handmade perfumes by a forester turned designer display a keen and deep instinct for scent materials.

The name itself, Libertine Fragrance, links a desiring nature and the sense of smell. The line hones in on all the most pleasurable aspects of perfume. It's not an experiment with the odd or difficult. It's a deep dive into the spectrum of beauties and enhancements available. It's about the most pleasant and appealing of aromatics. Made for pure sensualists, they will silently call to the true sensualist in yourself and in your immediate company.

Once the sample set arrived, I found my favorites (among other loves) were Sex & Jasmine, Smoked Bloom, and Violetta Body Oil. They face the increasing damp seasonal chill here with much ornamental warmth and grace. They work well in the chill outside and in the hot dry indoors. The fragrance of lush florals may support me in this winter of discontent. Their beauty is an aid across icy puddles and a balance to cross the treacherous patches. I imagine they will expand into the wet heat of summer to come. All were body conscious as much as inspired by the beauty of the notes.

My first samples were all in EdP form, and then I ordered the Jasmine and Smoked Bloom as fragrance oils. The EdPs were much bigger in effect of course, while the oils, as always, held close to the skin. I recommend trying/having both versions of both fragrances. They are good to layer together and fit close/adjacent moods and purposes.

The difference between the EdP and oil form shows most in the Jasmine EdP's green freshness. In oil form, it emanates a sweeter warmth to join with body temperature and mood.

There's an affinity that jasmine has to wool and other forms of warming airy fabrics. It clings to scarves, hats, sweaters, coats, and blankets. This perfume will let you explore that too, without going so far as to turn yourself into a scent bombshell.

A good way to wear it is to spray the EdP on the wrists, and use the oil at the neck. You can also outline the face at the temples to the jaw so it can be close as possible to your breathing in its influence. I've read that jasmine has a natural if a subtle beneficial effect on the skin and nerves, and I believe it. It is worth the experimentation because jasmine is one of the most beautiful scent experiences to be had on this earth.

The notes are listed as Jasmine Sambac Absolute* (India), Sandalwood Absolute* (Hawaii), Geranium* (Egypt), Neroli Absolute* (Egypt), Vanilla Bourbon Extract* (India), Aged Patchouli Essence* (India), Ambergris

Vanilla, Sandalwood and an ultralight touch of Patchouli increase the warmth and soulfulness of the star, Jasmine. These warm notes mitigate and corral the usual Jasmine cloy that could overpower. That strength and energy is then used for the purposes of lively heat and attraction. The animalic aspect morphs into refined and even playful happiness in its own beauty. A definite yet tiny touch of Ambergris hums in the background, grounding it all and making it last. It's pure and direct while holding awareness on an inviting parallel inner life. It connects to the sensual dreams that play out in the unconscious mind as you go about your life.

Smoked Bloom displays the olfactory effects of fire near the edges of a match made in heaven between apricot and osmanthus. It's a clean white smoke. The EDP holds the smoke further out to the distance, the oil keeps it closer up front.

I have been for more than a year now in a constant craving for the velvet fragrance of apricots. So this one drew me in, with its seared floral drizzled with the juice of the ripe fruit. It opens onto an atmosphere of liveliness, the fragrant vibrations diluted and expanded into clouds of oxygen. The apricot effect is here an aspect of amber and its connotations of ancient tree-sap. This connects imagination to the immense life forces of the deep past.

The notes are listed as Bergamot* (Italy), Bay Leaf* (West Indies) Osmanthus Absolute* (China), Vetiver Absolute* (Indonesia), Sandalwood * (Hawaii), White Musk.

Smoked Bloom Fragrance Oil from Libertine Fragrance site
I wonder if the open atmosphere that carries so many influences was created by the brightness of Bergamot. That sharp enveloping lemony tone holds volume and space within itself. It's tapped here to carry the complicated accords with all their associations.

This is a complex floral musk for me, in the EdP form, while the oil form holds the white smoke a shade more.

It's all a gathering of influences, in both forms, oil and EDP. This is not a perfume dominated by one theme like the Jasmine. This form of beauty lies in its combination of several notes that smooth out in a dilution. They move up into the air toward an open ethereal space of distinctive personality. It's a chorus of note whispers that form a whole character.

Photo via Clara's Handmade Pinterest
For me, it's like a new experience of another climate. Reminds me of going from one coast to the other the first time. Blue-grey skies, with shots of bright light from the cloud partings.

It's flattering to the skin. The whole body senses designed coolness that yet shows its contact with fire by a seared edge. The sear releases the complexity and soft sweetness of the floral amber and hay.

Violeta Body Oil is a comfort and a quiet ornament to the body. Composed of pure natural oils with a touch of fragrance, using Violet Leaf, Sandalwood, and Orris Butter. Can easily be worn with other perfumes, as it will not interfere.  You can only discern its graceful light tone putting your nose right up to the skin.  It creates a private aura that I find uplifting and soothing.

I'm also trying the Cedrus Hair Oil, made with light and rich natural oils and fragranced with tones of dry Cedarwoods, Mint and Grapefruit. It's made to pair well with the Violeta Body oil.  Our winters create a lot of static electricity in my hair and this works to imbue a certain weight that holds a subtle scent influence within the gleam it imparts.

I very much enjoyed the simple and direct story of the perfumer, and feel an affinity with his attitude. From the site:
My name is Josh, a forester turned designer. I turned to design because of an intense need to work creatively. I left the secure, established career ahead of me in Forestry to explore a creative path and spend as much time actively creating beautiful, useful things.
I had truthfully never loved perfume. I never really connected with the billboard messages of chic luxury and I found the scents all smelled the same. Midway through my design degree I started investigating the idea of scent as art however and I was hooked. I have always loved absorbing a place through its aroma, every landscape, every city block has an scent all its own. I began to wonder if perfume could be more authentic an experience, more artful and less about fancy ass yachts and gendered scents. I decided I would create Libertine as my response to the overly commercial world of big name perfume. It would be a creative expression, a refuge for beauty and curiosity. There would be no celebrity endorsement, no gender stereotyping; just the highest quality aromatic materials, beautiful design and amazing fragrances.

*asterisks in the note lists above signify natural fragrances.

visit the site for more information as to prices, sample sets, and to explore:
 Libertine Fragrances


Copyright 2017, Lucy Raubertas, All Rights Reserved.
Photos above as credited.

This is a non-commercial review, samples and perfumes purchased by me.

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