January 19, 2018

Layering Perfumes in Winter

via Michael Moon's Bookshop on Tumblr

Back to experimenting with perfume combinations. Delving further into what I have, and as I have it already it reflects what I love.

Diving into the pleasures of perfume as a source of comfort. It ornaments dark winter monochrome clothing and softens frosted edges. Takes the edge off the surprise of icy slipperiness. The shocking shortness of the daytime hours.

We've had long spells of winds straight from the Arctic. Layered over political anxieties. One small way to use what I have is to throw the ephemeral weight of olfactory private beauty against the balance of public cold fronts. Extreme versus extremes.

Perfume beauty is so delicate. Layering is play with favorite elements, to magnify the tones that have a personal draw. The extra firepower gets through to my frozen brain and heart. Yes, just skirting the risk of overdoing it.

I use two at a time. Often one as dominant theme, and the other as a punctuation mark that holds the mood and magnifies or tones that certain craved fragrance effect.

These perfumes are all stand-alone beauties. The variation made from using two at a time creates a heightened individual experience that answers to stronger tastes.

That said, there are months I can do nothing but rest in the most subtle perfumes. Times like these, I go for more extreme perfume effects. Layering with two at a time creates a fragrance blanket. A comfort that satisfies a wish for opulence and abundance. Claiming the forefront of attention to a degree that drives away other distractions, invisible armor.

Often trying two perfumes on a single theme, with some relation to each other.  Often much more of one than the other, one arm each, or neck and wrists. They rise and mix in the air, and still often show themselves individually, off and on. Stepping out into ice water winter air I still get vivid perfume sensations that waft up to me repeatedly, and that continue in the stillness indoors.

There are the classics combinations. Floral and patchouli or oud, musk and florals, citrus and fruit, gourmand and fruit, floral mixes. Some lines such as Jo Malone have created entire libraries around layering. More layers can begin under hot water, in the bath, with gels, lotions and oils.

A few examples  -

via Caitlyn Casey Pinterest
Exhibit A: Hermes Jour d'Hermes Absolue and Artemisia Saveur de l'Abricot edp

For brightness sake, a clear and sunny perfume by Hermes, Jour d'Hermes Absolue, as the dominant. Matched with a natural perfume by Artemisia, Saveur de l'abricot edp, in a more discrete amount. This combination is so intense and mutually flattering I hardly know what to do with myself when it's in its first throes of dry-down.

Jour d'Hermes has a big opening of intense citrus lofted up by smooth white florals, and that's exactly where it continues to float. This is that rare citrus themed perfume that can withstand winter winds. I found that out after testing it on a recent windy arctic cold day. I kept getting wafts of summer beauty with each step. It was not swept away by the wind and cold. The apricot undertones call to those in Saveur de l'abricot, which is the perfume that made me crave and look for more perfumes in apricot. Also sunny and bright, it has a nectar heart, a thicker base, rich warmth.

Silk velvet - Prism Silks
B. L'Artisan L'eau D'Ambre Extreme edp and Narciso Musc oil

This is a warm hug, a soft cloak, a cashmere blanket, velvet intimacy and softness, sweet dreams, contentment. Together they are a meditative, peaceful center.
Musc oil holds close to the skin, sinks in and breathes out floral accords, amberlyn and patchouli softly and quietly. A gentle accompaniment to Ambre Extreme's powdered vanilla-tinged floral-moderated spices. There is an effortless floating smooth dreaminess at the heart of both, but Ambre is a cascade that reaches out to surround while Musc hugs you in, embraces. Pure relaxation and comfort in both modes. Warms the natural skin scent and holds fast. Each extends the other's time frame, even for me, whose skin always eats perfume up so fast.

Loved this combination so much, was compelled to get backups of each, something I never do. They magnify each other. Remain in the forefront of personal awareness for an extended period of time, without fatigue or retreat. The soothing creaminess in combination is liquid tranquility.

C. Serge Lutens Un Bois Vanille edp and Soivohle Raspberries and Black Pepper Parfum

Sprayed Raspberries just above the Vanille on both arms.
Keeping them fairly separate allows their nuances to unfold. Their own dry down journey remains intact within the aerial mix. After a night's wear, they both lingered into the morning to enhance each other's facets, even subdued by the passage of time.

The softness of Vanille and dry sweetness of Raspberries together create a spacious ambiance spiked by the black pepper note. Brings to mind the scent of an old library interior I once worked in. Staying inside more when it's too cold out is enhanced by this combination. It's an upright, aware style of relaxation. With a soft skin close aura it lends itself to focus, for work or taking in information. Raspberries and Pepper keep the warm energy of the Vanille alert. It's a long simmer of quiet pleasure in the luck of finding this particular chamber music combination of perfume layering.

Dovima and Audrey Hepburn in Funny Face
D. Guerlain Insolence Parfum and Villoresi Teint de Neige EdT

These two elegancies are a well-matched pair. The floral tinted powder clouds thrown up by Teint de Neige, illuminated by the violet heart of Insolence. Or perceived another way, it is the scent of an idealized, expensive European makeup case from the 50s, maybe Dovima's. Lipstick infused with cool violet, on smooth skin caressed by swans' down fragrance. The cloud lights up from within as an edge of musk reveals itself.

Glamorous, understated, versatile, and also a comforting blanket of softness. Both perfumes remain steady and consistent and definitely there. Yet never wearing you, even in this doubling of complete in themselves fragrances of strength and character. Teint de Neige is more expansive, Insolence more interior, working close together, like a well-matched extrovert/introvert couple.

Could wear to a fancy wedding or to float away into a deep dream into full repose. Creates a border, a margin, a moat of elegance between the rough world and the skin's surface.

Went heavier on the Teint de Neige, it makes a powdered snow base to complement violet Insolence. Absorbing that ultra cool sweetness and transmuting it into disciplined ballerina style. The prettiness and charm of the powdered feathers are lifted and sustained by a core of cool strength. Violet as pure refreshment. Musk emerges from both in the dry down, with a unifying, soothing depth.
Elegant as a bird.

Fir Trees in the Snow, Casper David Friedrich

E. Von Eusersdorff Classic Patchouli Edp and Enfleurage Balsam Fir Essential Oil

Both have a related aromatic core, and lift a steady quiet flame through the winter cold outside. Indoor heat softens and relaxes the effect. I noticed a higher profile outdoors in contrast to the cold air and ambient street noise of every kind. The Balsam Fir Essential Oil is wild crafted in Canada and has a true spacious green sap heart that is heady. Patchouli's own headiness is tempered by Fir's uplift. (I believe this would work also with White Spruce or Scots Pine Enfleurage essential oils, if Fir is not in stock. Enfleurage's offerings shift every season and are of the highest small batch quality).

Wore them together, that is Fir directly on skin of both arms and sprays of Patchouli over it. Also kept a space for each to be pure, using Patchouli at the neck and Fir on its own on the arms. Fir imbues Patchouli with wakeful energy as Patchouli soothes Fir's tempestuous wildness. Something like a brighter, more translucent Slumberhouse Norne. I've often used Fir in a perfume burner to scent my place. This way it holds to the skin and expands the range of Patchouli into an old growth forest. These two combine into a whiff of the sacred for a nature worshipper. 

This combination brings out a sense of physical and mental contentment and balance, as well as providing a little solace to the possibly neglected feral side of the brain. My version of a work scent, as an excellent mood setter for writing and/or design. 
A down to earth enchantment.

Please follow the links above to individual posts. 

Copyright 2018, Lucy Raubertas. All Rights Reserved. 
Borrowed images, credits captioned.

No comments: