Post by Ainslie Walker
Named after a Russian Ballet, this fragrance certainly is a dance, and tells a story. But not a pretty one. Nor a sexy one either. According to Wikipedia, a faun is a rustic forest god or goddess of Roman mythology often associated with enchanted woods and the Greek god Pan and his satyrs. Half man, half goat. I’m thinking big sexy leather and man smells, but I’m getting A LOT more goat. Don’t get me wrong, I absolutely LOVE goats…but I think this this one’s going feral.
Photo Stolen Wikipedia
CS Lewis describes Mr. Tumnus, the Faun in his Narnia series as having reddish skin, curly hair, brown eyes, a short pointed beard, horns on his forehead, cloven hooves, goat legs with glossy black hair, a “strange but pleasant little face,” and a long tail.
The Afternoon of a Faun by Ralf Schwieger for Etat Libre d`Orange 2012
Photo Stolen Fragrantica
Fragrantica gives these featured accords in one line:
Bergamot, pepper, cinnamon, incense, immortelle, orrisroot, myrrh, leather, benzoin, rose, jasmine, oak moss
I’m first hit with a big 80’s oak moss projection…My Dad wore grey flannel in the 80’s and it’s as if he has blasted past on his way out to work, doused. Saving the day, an aerated twist of iris and green dry foliage notes break in and take over. I feel its well structured, and giving me all the right imagery, but I’m not sure I like it. There’s something pungent. Daisies? Pee? Maybe it’s the immortelle?
WHERE’S THE PRETTY?
Not a pretty mix….more like some herbal witches brew. I WISH I could smell the jasmine or rose, but nope. I’d like to smell some hints of violets and more orris, for an enchanted forest, but no. Suddenly I am reminded of the smell of autumn leaves, as if I am kicking my way through them, or rakeing them up, dry, crispy leaves, crackling, underneath earthy moist mossy smells are also being exposed. I THINK I like it a little more. In fact this is my favorite moment in my Afternoon with a Faun.
Photo Stolen Pixabay
Spicy, sparkly and fresh it continues. Playful and tart. Despite all the spice I’m not reminded of any foods so to speak. There’s no gourmand. I don’t like it much on my skin, and I cannot imagine nuzzling up to someone with it on either. It’s old fashioned, almost old mannish…slightly dated, and synthetic. I’m struggling, but slightly enchanted to make it through to the end.
I have a headache. I can smell it all day on the other side of the room. I am sensitive to one of its ingredients, but which one??
There’s something sweet, maybe fruity I’m thinking berries and brambles, but again none in particular. Maybe some frankincense, but not the smoking variety, and some cinnamon-sweetness. I think the Faun must be trotting about on a warm sunny autumn day. Kicking up earth, herbal roots, moss, moss and more moss…berries…herbal…and peeing in delight. Something does sparkle..maybe more of a sprinkle? Perhaps the ballerina has an old injury and is wearing a STRONG herbal liniment…a Thai healing balm smell. Could be cinnamon, possibly medicinal Myrrh. Immortelle is also commonly found in liniments, so maybe why I make this connection.
Photo Stolen Flickr
Dry. Green. Twisted green. I like the green. I’ve read one reviewer who thinks the green smells of celery. I know what they mean, and yet I don’t agree. Instead, I am picturing the dark green suede platform clogs my kindergarten teacher used to wear. Weird, but interesting. The drydown is gentler, leathery suede.
Despite busting to wash it off, and pack my decant away in a tightly sealed zip lock bag, far far away, I enjoyed trying Afternoon with a Faun. It’s EXACTLY what it says on the bottle!!