Tag Archives: Alexandra Monet

Triple trip with Maison Berdoues

In the past every now and then I could hear people talking about Maison Berdoues and their perfumes. However it hasn’t been until few months ago that I actually got a chance to try what this brand has to offer. I was surprised to learn that Berdoues history began in 1902 and that it was quite flourishing. But at Esxence they didn’t present any of their classic fragrances. Instead they flew with the current of time, presenting a modern like of Collection Grands Crus. The packaging is eye-catching & juices have a lot of fun in them. It’s actually hard to decide which one I like the most. Therefore I decided to write about 3 of them that I think are very suitable for summer season.


Scorza di Sicilia

Its Italian name means Sicilian Bark. Composition of this fragrance opens with a vibrant cocktail of citrus. Ultra fresh and energetic, it feels like a deep dive into a swimming pool. The citrus accord is exhilaratingly chilly so you’ll definitely experience a cool-down effect once you spray it on skin. Within few minutes the juiciness boosts up and becomes aromatic. To me Scorza do Sicilia smells like a just picked, sun-drenched fruit. I can clearly smell zesty rind as well as tart and sweet pulp. On their website they mention citron but to me it’s more complex, like a combination of lemon, lime, orange & bergamot. After a while the composition warms up. There is a cedarwood accord that brings substance and weight to otherwise fleeting citrus. Its woody aroma is gentle, blending harmoniously with citrus notes. There’s a certain warmth to this woody aspect as well as a tiny hint of soft spiciness. Vetiver has a grassy, kind of lemony vibe in this scent. It’s also a sunny but contrasts with juicy citrus as itself it has some dryness to it. It’s an aromatic blend that is truly mouth-watering. Great and optimistic blend for vacation in Italy. Perfumer – Sebastien Martin.


Assam of India

Immediately after applying this one on skin I experienced a green wave going through my nose. There’s something wild about it but then it leaves the impression of green grass on a summer morning, when it’s still covered with dew drops. There’s something certainly watery about the opening. Lightweight substantivity arises few minutes later and you realise that what you smell on the skin is a tea note. Since it’s Assam of India, the tea is nothing else but assam, a black tea. It smells aromatic and somehow comforting, with this specific vibe that tannins are able to introduce. Then we have a true lemon – juicy and a bit sour it blends so well with assam that it smells like a cup of your favorite beverage (hello tea lovers!). Assam note also gives me this blurry impression of something woody but it’s very faint. Freshness of tea with that extra drop of lemon juice is definitely a key aspect to Assam of India. At some point sandalwood joins the composition and it really adds few extra kilograms to this perfume. Now it sits on the skin with more confidence and substance, it no longer feels like it could be gone by next time you’ll want to smell your wrist. There’s even something balmy about it now. Truly amazing perfume for summer. Perfumer – Jennifer Riley.


Vanira Moorea

Out of the bunch featured in this post I find Vanira Moorea to be the most interesting and unusual perfume. At first whiff all I get is a very naturally smelling orange. I can literally smell a whole, round fruit. There’s some zing coming from the zest, tart & aromatic albedo and the sweet scent of its juicy flesh. It’s a very playful scent that puts a smile on my face any time I smell it on my wrist. Some time later a gorgeous vanilla joins the composition. There are many words to describe it. It’s lush, luscious, creamy, sweet, balsamic – all this at the same time. Its smell reminds me of vanilla ice cream but the best way to sum it up perfectly is to say that Vanira Moorea is a tropical vanilla. There’s something really exotic and fruity about it, even though no exotic fruit is mentioned anywhere in its press release. To me this perfume also smells like an expensive suntan lotion with a glittery shimmer. It’s a yummy smell of having fun in the sun. Later on this vanilla accord develops a powdery facet. This facet is very pretty and has some moisture to it, which instantly brings to my mind the association with a coconut pulp. It even smells slightly similar. Addition of petitgrain adds a warm freshness. It’s vital part of Vanilla Moorea, otherwise there would be a high chance the perfume would feel to heavy and cloying to wear during hot days. Nothing like that happens and I wore it on a day when it was 30°C. I can’t get enough of this one. Perfumer – Alexandra Monet.


Not only these three from Berdoues Collection Grands Crus are playful scents because the other ones are just as playful. There’s a lot of fun to these perfumes & I’m sure they will bring you lots of pleasure when you get a possibility to test them. All of them are concentrated at eau de parfum level – this provides great lasting power and decent sillage. Bottles of this collection are absolutely an example of perfume bottle porn. Each 100 ml flacon is decorated with a special motif assigned to each composition. They are also very good value for money, as a big bottle costs only 79 €. I am seriously tempted to buy that pretty bottle of Vanira Moorea and douse myself in it regularly.

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Mother’s care, Evody Parfums Cuir Blanc

Some of our perfume discoveries are simply driven by fate or some other higher force. That is the case for me and Evody Parfums. I haven’t heard of this niche brand until March 2014, when at Esxence Anais Biguine of Jardins d’Ecrivains introduced me to her friend, whose stand was just w few meters away. That’s how I stumbled upon Cerine Vasseur and Regine Droin – daughter & mother who combined their passion for scents, giving birth to a fragrance line and called it EVODY.

In a few years the collection grew up to 8 fragrance compositions, each focusing on a different materials and smells. As Cerine guided me through all the perfumes I quickly realized that the seventh blend I was given to try is my favourite one and it felt very “me” on the paper, so I decided to wear it on skin as well, since I had a free spot on my arm to use. The name was Cuir Blanc.

The opening of Cuir Blanc gives a sharp alcoholic vibe before the alcohol evaporates completely. I guess I was to greedy to smell it and didn’t wait long enough for ethanol to float away. As soon as it dries on your skin the perfume story begins. Just as the name suggests this is a leathery perfume and leather is the first accord that unveils upon application. It is this lovely kind of leather which smells very delicate, soft, thin and a little bit fluffy. It’s more like the high quality suede, perfect to make fitted gloves. It can embrace you in a luxurious feeling like you were wearing some haute couture garment.

The delicacy of the suede-leathery opening is counterparted with the note of saffron, which adds warmth and a lovely hint of spiciness, measured with perfection to complement the leather, not to overpower it. Evody Parfums Cuir Blanc is now very tender, sensual and also quite intimate in my opinion. After about an hour the perfume begins to build-up a powdery facet. There’s a solid dose of musk in this perfume – at the start it’s more powdery but as the progress is recorded it becomes more milky, slightly lactonic and creamy but in a light way, think – whipped cream.

Before I found out what notes create Cuir Blanc I already knew that iris is an important part of this perfume blend. Waiting for a reaction, Cerine confirmed that my nose was right smelling iris. The noble note of iris in this perfume has a few faces. At first it’s sheer powdery (but not talcy), kind of reminding me of Prada Infusion d’Iris but with less powderness to it. At some point iris turns more buttery and rooty with a noticeable earthy undertone to it. This part of the perfume lasts relatively long, 2-3 hours actually. What I really like about is that it continues to bring all those stronger ingredients in a very gentle way.

After having Cuir Blanc on my skin for four hours, came the moment when I got quite confused! You might ask why and I’ll tell you – I started smelling the lily of the valley accord. No kidding! I returned to Evody Parfums booth at Esxence to investigate the case. Cerine said this perfume doesn’t contain this note but when she smelled the perfume on my arm she nodded and said that she also gets the same vibe that I do. The next time I wanted to smell the fragrance on my skin, the surprising guest was not there anymore. What a relief! I really didn’t want lily of the valley here.

Further line explorations as reading the press release I received from Cerine I formed a theory that it was a violet leaf that somehow transformed to giving a lily-of-the-valley-like aroma in the company of other ingredients of Cuir Blanc. Continuing the review, later the perfume was pleasing me with a transparent and luminous amber accord which was slightly animalic but it also had a little vanilla and caramel feeling to it. There was also a bit of thyme which made the composition a little bit more herbal and even more entertaining. Suedy leather, powdery iris and sweet amber create a trio of the notes that last on your skin for the longest.

To many of you Cuir Blanc might seem to quiet, too polite but that’s exactly what is a trump of this fragrance. The brand manage to render as powerful ingredients as leather or saffron and present them to the public in their softened, sensualized form without making anything more simple. It’s true that Cuir Blanc is not very complicated but it has its own level of complexity. Those who want to understand it – they will understand it. I think the perfume is beautiful even though it’s evolution isn’t big and it stays rather linear but with best ingredients for me.

Evody Parfums Cuir Blanc is a part of Collection Biographique which reflects different stages of Cerine Vasseur life through fragrance. Cuir Blanc is a time of Cerine’s pregnancy which totally explains the gentle character of the perfume. The fragrance is available as 50 ml and 100 ml eau de parfum bottled in black glass flacons with white labels and a crown-like cap with a house logo embossed on top of it. The creator is Alexandra Monet with assistance of Cerine Vasseur. It launched in 2011.

[note] All pictures are my own, all rights reserved. A bottle of Cuir Blanc was a gift from Cerine Vasseur of Evody Parfums.

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