Tag Archives: Maria Candida Gentile

Scent is a message, Maria Candida Gentile Leuco

During Pitti Fragranze 2014 there was an exciting new launch from Italian niche perfume creator – Maria Candida Gentile. Maria was trained in Grasse under a guardianship of Carol Andre, who passed all the little perfumery secrets onto her. Nowadays she’s one of the most renowned noses in Italy. Her brand was established couple of years ago (2009), since then she has created a various offer of scents, valued by those who are in-the-know. This season she presents 3 new scents.

Leuco, Kitrea and Syconium are three compositions creating “Flight of the Bumblebee” collection which was inspired by the music piece of the same title, written by Nikolaj Andreevic Rimskij-Korsakov. Which tells the story of a character who magically is transformed into an insect to allow him to deliver an important message to the king as fast as possible. The collection expresses the desire to live and a key element connecting the scents is a honey note appearing in this trio.

Today I’d like to focus on Leuco, which is my favorite perfume in this recently launched trio. This fragrance opens with smoky yet transparent smell of cistus labdanum which has this delightfully appealing silver shimmer. It does feel minimally metallic for a minute or two, but then it becomes warm, balsamic, with a bit of spiciness in the background. From the very opening Leuco feels quite magical, especially that it connects quite opposite trends being smoky and fresh at the same time. It’s comforting smell has an ability to calm nerves and it allows you to relax. It’s a perfume that will embrace the wearer, giving him or her the best that this perfume has to offer. And it has lots of good things to offer.

After 10, maybe 15 minutes Leuco gains an additional shine and luminosity when honey note joins the composition. It brightens the perfume with sweeter, golden tones of voluptuous sticky goodness, the precious gift from the bees. Honey note is sensual here and it also feels like it was infused with some spices, like cardamom or nutmeg. Some time later the honey accord is still going strong but now I also start to detect the aroma of beeswax, adding a hint of waxy feeling with a bit of propolis.

But you don’t have to worry Maria Candida Gentile Leuco won’t start smelling like a candle made of natural wax. 2 hours later the perfume starts to show a little bit more floral notes which blend with labdanum and honey (yes, they are still pretty strong) in a fantastic way. Maria has used a midnight flower, tuberose in this creation. The absolute she added makes Leuco a sensual and carnal pleasure fragrance that mesmerizes your soul, hypnotizes the senses and make you want more.

Tuberose absolute really turns Leuco into a real magic potion. The smokiness of labdanum, the sweetness and animality of honey entwine with intensive, rich and a bit indolic nature of tuberose to create a concoction that brings to my mind a night scenery with a full moon in the sky, fog and a lake that reflects the light. On a little island in the middle of the lake a magical nymph could live. Lily is the additional flower tone that makes this fragrance from Maria Candida Gentile even more tender and alluring. The lasting power of this stage is incredible, 4 hours for heart notes is a lot.

After that time has passed the composition is slowly turning towards the base notes. These continue the trend presented in the very beginning, as they are more substantial and rich. First of all we have benzoin. Its resinous smell bears hints of caramely, burnt sugar sweetness which slowly settles into more balsamic and quiet. Black pepper accord adds a hefty dose of spiciness but it never becomes too pungent, it’s just right. At first the spiciness of this chord vibrates but after some time it becomes more quiet and gentle, when it harmonizes with benzoin.

Later on the composition of Leuco by Maria Candida Gentile gets to rearrange a little bit. Labdanum seems to be coming more to the forefront bringing its dark, smoky and resinous aroma. Right behind it is the thrill of tuberose and in the 3rd set there is honey, beeswax, benzoin and pepper. After 6 or so hours the perfume settles. It’s not as strong as it was earlier, its sillage drops and gradually starts to melt with your skin. In my opinion this is a really good way to mark the finale of this perfume, because such sensual and bewitching creation shall last on your skin surface for a couple more hours. On the day I wore this fragrance few people asked me what smells so good. Ain’t this a proof of Leuco being a sense-capturing blend?

Leuco is an eau de parfum created by Maria Candida Gentile in 2014. It’s lasting power oscillates around 10 hours, out of which 6 hours have a greater sillage and the remaining 4 show that the sillage shrinks and the perfume stays closer to the skin surface. The composition is available in 100 ml flacon as well as in 15 ml travel spray. If you like the sound of smoky perfume with a camouflaged tuberose accord, the perfume that is rich, sensual yet airy and ethereal to some extend, Leuco is worth giving a shot. I’m seriously considering getting more of it.

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Monday Quick Sniffs (on Tuesday), part 21

Aaand… We’re back in the studio to provide you with the fresh portion of Quick Sniffs.

Masque is an Italian perfume brand (from Milan, by the way) which debuted in 2012. Montecristo that I’m reviewing today joined the collection last year along with 2 other compositions. How does it smell? Ugh… It’s animalic as hell! There’s lots of fur, sweat and general dirtiness. The scent is almost fecal in the opening, at some point making me think of some unknown soup with fennel and fenugreek. The brand on their own mentions they used the essence made of hyrax secretion. After some time Montecristo loses the sharp edge and mellows with ambrette, rum and styrax. It then carries on as smoky blend of labdanum, tobacco and… gaiac wood of course! Few hours later a sweaty-wood facet of cedar is revealed and shortly after amplified with somewhat salty benzoin accord. There’s also a lot of earthy and a bit rotten patchouli in the drydown, celery seeds make the blend slightly greener and vegetal. This perfume is really not to my liking and the bottle doesn’t look captivating as well. If you like animal scents, this is for you. Montecristo was composed by Delphine Thierry. The perfume has nice longevity and good projection.

Sideris by Maria Candida Gentile is a lovely and unusual blend. Immediately after spraying it unveils a soft yet deep accord of sideris, a mountain tea. It has a slightly powdery and minimally green aspect which shortly disappears. In a matter of next few minutes Sideris becomes balsamic – benzoin adds much more density to it while beeswax adds some sort of specific sweetness and tenderness. Later on a lot of smoky incense appears making this perfume warm and cold alternately. Finally the warmer side wins when incense becomes more subtle and saffron gains on intensity. It doesn’t smell like those jammy, rose-like saffrons many of us enjoy so much, it’s more dried. In addition to that myrrh adds some raw spiciness to the composition. I could also notice some black pepper with its metallic background. The drydown stage appears after 6-7 hours and it’s quite mellow. It has a smooth, slightly creamy sandalwood combined with other woodsy tones without any species mentioned. This perfume somehow makes me think of either a lone trip in the mountains in the autumn, or a visit to a crowded, smoky bar. Sideris is really worth giving a try.

Djhenne is one of the latest new positions on the shelf of Parfumerie Generale collection. This perfume is also an element of the brands’ 10th birthday celebration. First accord my nose picks from this composition is the one of cocoa beans. It has a tender, velvety quality which is a little bit powder. Of course it veers a little bit into the gourmand territory but it’s not a gourmand blend per se. After around 15 minutes the aromatic side is revealed with hints of purple-gray lavender flowers. It adds a masculine element to the composition yet again, it doesn’t make Djhenne a fougere. Later on I could smell a little bit of chocolate-minty concoction softened by a blond leather accord. Well, the latter one is more like a suede to me. It has quite sophisticated and elegant finish. The drydown turns out to be slightly more woody with cedar (not much sweat here.) Wheat absolute makes a resemblance to some vodka drink and it also gives a hay impression. The last touch is a calmed down balsamic smell of myrrh. All in all Djhenne is a great perfume, I just don’t see myself wearing it regularly.

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