Post by TinaG
It is magnolia season here in Sydney, the wonderful lush simple blooms are opening up all over town and I’ve been pressing my nose to as many as possible trying to build up a scent memory of this gorgeous flower.
Eau de Magnolia by Carlos Benaïm for Frédéric Malle 2014
Photo Stolen Fragrantica
Fragrantica gives these featured accords:
Heart: Magnolia, vetiver, patchouli
Base: Cedar, moss, amber
Eau de Magnolia is seducingly ethereal. It lives and breathes in the wisps of its silage, turning and teasing, flashing hints of scent which last as long as a breath.
I can understand people dismissing this fragrance quickly because of the familiarity of the top notes and the cologne nature. I nearly made that mistake too. But it is much more subtle and complex than that. It needs to be on skin, paper would do it no good at all. It also needs to be given a lot of air, sprayed at a distance, and needs a few wearings. The continuity of the fragrance is in the cool lemon, the warm magnolia, and a general ‘greeness”. It also has an aquatic aspect, but not marine, just open and clear. But the magic of this fragrance is in the way it changes.
Photo Stolen Pixabay
Over the top of the green/lemon strand, I get whiffs of different things – pepper, bergamot, lemon, moss, vetiver…. The image I get in my head is like playing with a heavy silk sheet, there is a linearity to it (the lemon/green base ) but when it moves, it has a mind of its own and it slides like a liquid. And like silk, different parts may catch the light and shimmer at different times. But it also can’t be forced, I gave myself a headache sniffing my wrist, but sniffing 20cm away worked wonders.
I also can’t exactly say how it opens – my first wearing it was all fresh lemon, the second, bergamot and today it’s all about grapefruit. I strongly suspect that it would blossom more in summer too, not really a winter scent. I find myself standing at the window, looking at the crisp blue winter sky and longing for the warmer summer months.
Photo Stolen Wikipedia
I became enamoured with the magnolia fragrance last summer, having been introduced to Magnolia Grandiflora – Sandrine, and Michel, so much so that I purchased a full bottle of Sandrine. By way of comparison to Eau de Magnolia, Michel is the closer match with its waxy warmth, whilst Sandrine is crisp and dewy, said to mirror a magnolia bud waiting to burst open. Because of the depth of sillage of Eau de Magnolia, I can’t wear them side by side, it’s too confusing and I’m not sure what smells I’m getting from where. And to be honest, sometimes you don’t want to pick apart a fragrance too much, I just want to wear them and enjoy the added beauty and dimension they bring to my day.
Photo Stolen Pixabay
Another mistake I nearly made with Eau de Magnolia is that I originally thought that it lasted two hours on my skin. Not the case. I wore it to work, kept smelling lovely florals that were slowly turning woodsy, and after a gruelling 10 hour day I noticed wisps of fragrance still emanating from my chest. It was very comforting. Such a versatile and beautiful scent – I’m a fan.
Who of you readers has tried Eau de Magnolia? Impressions?