Post by Portia
Hello Fragrant Friends,
Mandy Aftel is one of the best known & most loved Indie perfumers on the planet. Not only for her stellar fragrances but also for her books on fragrance (Essence & Alchemy and Fragrant: The Secret Life of Scent) and her natural perfumery school. My every dealing with her has been so lovely, she is one of the greats and has the most beautiful presentation in her packaging. The whole Aftelier product is so luxurious and getting an order is exquisite fun opening it all up. My favourite way to buy Aftelier is the A Trio of Miniatures in a Silk Pouch that is also in a tin. I use these miniatures as gifts when I’m travelling, giving one to people who I particularly love or who have gone out of their way, and they are always accepted with real pleasure.
Photo Stolen Aftelier
Vanilla Smoke by Aftelier Perfumes 2015
Vanilla Smoke by Mandy Aftel
Photo Stolen Fragrantica
Fragrantica gives these featured accords in one line:
Yellow mandarin, Siam wood, saffron absolute, vanilla absolute, lapsang souchong tea essence (tea leaves smoked over pinewood), coumarin, ambergris
After reading her review I was chatting briefly with Victoria over on EauMG and … Portia: .. the EdP felt like a magical Shalimar restructuring. It’s my favourite so it was really nice to smell the Ultimate Smoke Shalimar with extra twists and nuance. Victoria: .. a big yes to Ultimate Smoke Shalimar because that’s accurate! The EDP reminds me very much of like modern, smoky Shalimar, like Shalimar roasting marshmallows over a campfire.
Photo Stolen Flickr
Vanilla, warm, comforting, sensual and alluring. The simplest of scents yet also incredibly complex. In Vanilla Smoke Mandy Aftel has added spice and heavy resins that are cut through with the strong smoky tea note of lapsang souchong, When I read the note list before trying Vanilla Smoke, and before reading any other reviews, I thought it was going to be a very dense, hefty, thick scent. One perfectly chosen to warm and sweeten winter nights but too gluggy and oppressive for the warmer months. No Way! Somehow Mandy has managed to lift it and gift it air, while being fully and gloriously fragrant and the opening is mildly ferocious in a VERY good way, there is a floaty sheer-ness that makes it feel free. I don’t know if you remember those 1980s video clips where it was dusk or dark and smoke billowing around some half naked male dancers and a fabulously made up songstress in an over the top gown belting out a power ballad with a dance backbeat? Vanilla Smoke has all the glamour, fun and over the top outrage but softened for a modern market.
Photo Stolen Pixabay
Vanilla Smoke is dry and desiccated, elegant and totally immersive up close. From further away, or on someone else, it wears less dry and you get to smell that lovely vanilla shining through the smoke. Another reviewer wrote sumptuous and I concur, perfect word for Vanilla Smoke.
Do you have a Mandy Aftel fragrance that you adore? If you haven’t tried her yet, go visit the site Aftelier<<JUMP. It’s full of beautifully fragrant things that aren’t only perfume…