Post by Val the Cookie Queen
Hermès, Hairdressers, and a Touch of Leather
Hermès Cuir d’Ange by Jean-Claude Ellena for Hermès 2014
Hermessence No 12
Cuir d’Ange really does smell like the inside of a soft leather bag. The kind that I will never own. I am not going to dissect Cuir d’Ange. Why would I? I learned on my recent trip to Florence that many of the perfumers want to stop “note lists” as it can take the wearer away from the beauty of the creation. Suffice it to say that there are layers of notes as with all perfume. Cuir d’Ange starts just sweet enough, and not overly flowery, the cool, elegant leather is detectable immediately. It has more of a suede feel, soft as a powder-puff. It smells exquisitely expensive, smooth and flawless. A whispy touch of warm caramel hovering, a soft muskiness. Subtle. It feels beautiful on the skin. A good generous spraying gave me hours of pleasure. I know that for some, the Hermès longevity is an issue. They are eau de toilette strength, but who cares? No law against reapplication.
Photo Stolen Fragrantica
Fragrantica give these featured accords in one line:
Heliotrope, hawthorn, violet, narcissus, musk and leather
Jean-Claude Ellena is 67. It took him 10 years to create Cuir d’Ange. When asked why he explained that it is a slow and very demanding process. Taking a concept that is in the mind and translating the concept into a physical thing is hard.
Photo Stolen Flickr
Cuir d’Ange was named referencing the words of an early 20th century French author Jean Giono. Giono has inspired Ellena for over thirty years. (Although I know of Giono, I am not familiar with anything that he wrote. I better remedy that!) Ellena describes himself as “a writer of smells”. That applies to all great perfumers.
My hairdresser has a leather fetish. He thinks I don´t know. I plan very careful which perfume I wear each time I go. Today I wore Cuir d’Ange.
Photo Stolen Flickr
I went to the Hermès store in Vienna last week. Their customer service is amazing. The SA gave me 8mls of Cuir d’Ange to “try properly”. Which I have done. It will be my next purchase. Much thanks to my two perfumista girlfriends in Vienna for introducing me to Hermès. I have given my bank manager their contact details.
Further reading: Bois de Jasmin and Grain de Musc
Cuir d’Ange is number 12 in Hermès’ Hermessence collection of perfumes. It is available exclusively in Hermès stores. It costs about 185 Euros for 100 mls.
Which is 92.50 Euros for 50 mls which is not expensive compared to some of those over priced supposed big hitters out there.
Surrender To Chance has samples starting at $4/ml
Cuir d’Ange is graceful and refined. No mean feat for a leather perfume. Sublime.