Tag Archives: 2010 launch

Strokes of Yellow, Ramon Monegal Impossible Iris

The story of me and this perfume dates back to 2014 or even earlier on the timeline. I got acquainted with Ramon Monegal brand around 2013, I believe, and it was a year later during my very first trip to Milan for Esxence when I met the founder-perfumer and his lovely family in person. Back in the day Undina and Hajusuuri – my perfume triplets, were talking a lot about Impossible Iris & how much they liked it. But I couldn’t understand why they were so fascinated by it. I was lusting over Ambra di Luna instead. The other day I found my old sample and gave it a try. Something clicked.

Impossible Iris invites me to step into its world with the ripe smell of raspberry. But instead of offering me an adolescent red fruit dollop with an overdose of glucose it serves the berry in an elegant & fancy way. Tart flavor slightly overpowers the sweetness here, and there’s also a bit of this grainy texture coming from the seeds once the strawberry gets crushed between your teeth. There are other fruity nuances that serve as backdrop to it. I get hints of apple for sure and I think there’s also something peachy hiding deeper. And a tad of melon for that juicy-watery aftertaste.

After a while the raspberry rolls in a powdery substance that completely changes the character of this fragrance. The fruit has been covered with small yellow particles that are nothing else but a mimosa pollen. From this point the floral potential of Impossible Iris is revealed. Mimosa gives the perfume a sweet, spring & summery facet. It’s powdery in an airy way but there are also threads of honey and something green that are woven into this accord. It feels pure, innocent and more girly than not. I like that mimosa here is more of an element of freshness rather than a cosmetic vibe.

impossible-iris

This solar powderness of mimosa steps down eventually which leads to a reveal of iris itself. In case of Ramon Monegal Impossible Iris it’s a glamorous and sophisticated floral presence. Its reserved, kind of cold and distanced. Unlike many other irises this one is not powdery nor boudoiresque. It remains silky & soft for most of the time. It becomes slightly buttery at the later stage. I like to think of it as a yellow petals iris, not the usual purple one. It’s definitely different interpretation for this precious flower and its root – for that’s when the true magic of orris lies, buried in the ground.

Ylang-ylang and jasmin enrich the floral bouquet of Impossible Iris by adding a little bit of their own oomph to the composition. The first one makes the scent more creamy, lactonic and it kind of introduces a tropical feeling right there. Jasmine on the other hand makes this flowery concoction feel more full, heady and at the same time a tad more volatile. Finally it all comes down to a cedarwood note which gives a substantivity to the base and which lets the perfume remain on skin for a decent number of hours. And I like a drier woody finish that gives off some aromatic molecules.

All in all I was finally able to understand the beauty of a perfume that Undina and Hajusuuri appreciated years ago. Even though it’s been already 10 years since Ramon Monegal introduced Impossible Iris this perfume can still easily fit into any modern guide on iris perfumes. It won’t become one of my favourites of the genre but I feel a tiny bit richer now that I tried it again so much time later and that it felt clearer now. It’s a fragrance for the curious ones I think. Impossible Iris is an eau de parfum and is available in 50 ml bottles. Make sure to chime in to tell if you tried it before.

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Show me how you burlesque, Histoires de Parfums 1889 & Jovoy Rouge Assassin

The last couple of months kind of let me forget how much I love Histoires de Parfums as a perfume brand. Don’t get me wrong here – I’m still totally in love with my bottle of 1725 Casanova. I also liked 1899 Hemingway, but not enough to decide on buying a higher amount of it. Then during Pitti Fragranze I discovered Gerald Ghislain’s newest babies, the Opera Collection which I found rather disappointing (with over-the-top bottles and music boxes). As I was thinking about what to review next I had a though – it’s carnival, I’ll find something totally outgoing. And I found these two.

Histoires de Parfums 1889 Moulin Rouge begins with a true cosmetic accord that is powdery, feminine and oh-so-playful. Very powdery iris brings the boudoir vibe and association of make-up products. To me it smells mostly of lipstick, bright red shade. Plum note which is slightly smoked here gives both fruity and dusty/smoked vibe reminiscent of old cabaret clubs, with red lights and velvet couches. A place where ladies appeared on stage with heavy costumes, dancing can-can or trying to flirt with already half-drunk audience. The night is young and the courtain is still up.

At some point Moulin Rouge develops a lovely warm and spicy facet created with cinnamon which adds the tingling effect and wormwood which adds a little bit more substance. Still the perfume remains playful and cosmetic. Then the floral vibe comes in. Focused mostly on the rose note (introduced as rose tincture) it adds a flirty and girly manner that suits 1889 so well. Lots of musk blend with the silky pink petals for another powdery wave of this fragrance.

Later this Histoires de Parfums scent becomes slightly more juicy thanks to tangerine essence. It adds a lovely, tart element to the composition, making 1889 feel more sweet. With the over-the-top lipstick vibe emanating from Moulin Rouge, this sweet citrus part smells really gourmand and mouth-watering. This perfume smells of fun, feathers, lace and sequins. It’s a celebration of Belle Epoque, a toast to life filled with color, emotions and vivacity. Girls just want to have fun, right?

On the other hand we have Rouge Assassion from Jovoy. This composition opens as well with undeniably cosmetic character but instead of smelling like lipstick, it smells more like face powder, intensively scented with rose. Dominating notes here are iris and ambrette seeds, creating this realistic make up sensation that lasts for a really long time. After around 20 minutes rose enters the composition, making the composition an ultra feminine one.

After a while this exquisite rose powder begins to melt and gains rich and creamy qualities brough to Rouge Assassin with sandalwood note. The accord is milky, rather thick but not overwhelming. When I smell it, it kind of makes me think of transition from face powder to liquid face foundation. The cosmetic vibe is still pretty strong, rice note makes it even stronger. At some point the woody notes gain weight and sandalwood together with cedar start to push the make-up vibe to the side.

After 1,5 hours Jovoy Rouge Assasin starts to smell like a different fragrance. The cosmetic element is still there but it gave up the throne and now  balsamic notes rule the composition. There is elemi resin combined with somewhat caramely benzoin and aromatic-creamy tonka bean. Similarly to Histoires de Parfums 1889, this creation also has some gourmand parts. What develops later is a lovely amber accord. Amber, not ambergris, so it smells bright and luminous, sweet-vanillic as well. Once it gets to this stage it doesn’t really change much on my skin. It’s a concoction of rose, face powder, creamy woods and sweet resins.

Out of these two composition I like Moulin Rouge more but Rouge Assassin is a more wearable composition with its woody and resinous nuances. The first one is a true fragrance of the cabaret while the second one could serve more as a trademark of female serial murderer who used to slay unfaithful men when they sneaked out to meet with a lover. Both are ultra feminine, it’s really hard to imagine a men wearing these fragrances. Histoires de Parfums 1889 was developed by Gerald Ghislain in 2010 and is available in 14, 60 and 120ml bottles. Jovoy Rouge Assassin is a 2012 creation from Amelie Bourgeois, available in 50 or 100ml.

[note] middle picture is Lady Gaga and her lipstick gun, still from Judas music video.

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