Tag Archives: Patricia de Nicolai

Summer escapade, Nicolai Cap Néroli

This year the weather is really weird. There are some dynamic and drastic changes but probably the most noticeable one was the fact that once the winter has ended it all skipped to summer almost. The weather feels quite summery right now and yet it’s just the end of May and in theory there’s still full month until we can officially say it’s summer. The weather however encourages us to dream about voyages. But it’s not a holiday time yet, that’s why a perfume that depicts an imaginary journey is especially welcome now. We’re going South with newest Nicolai perfume.

The uplifting opening of Cap Néroli introduces me first to a fruity aroma of orange and mandarin. They have a sweet smell yet at the same time they’re tinted with a little bit of tang & zestiness. It feels lively and sparkling in the way a lemonade would make a joyful fizz as you open the bottle. This impression remains alone on my skin for maybe 10 minutes, after which other notes gradually start to kick in & add their own characteristics to this new Nicolai fragrance. When a gentle wind starts to ‘blow’ within the scent it awakes the rustling leaves of petitgrain that spread a green hue around.

What I especially like about the use of petitgrain in Cap Néroli is the fact that not only it introduces an element of verdancy to the scent but it also provides  some shade that contrasts with sunny citrus fruit. From there the perfume takes a stroll down the green alley. It becomes herbal and aromatic – mint and rosemary turn it into a fragrant mixture that I would definitely pour into a tall glass, decorate with tiny paper umbrella and drink it up on a hot day. It feels super fresh, there’s also something clean about this scent but at the same time it doesn’t bring a soapy vibe to my attention.

cap-neroli

After a while actual neroli appears. It enters the scene gradually, without creating a bursting impression. It slowly becomes more detectable on skin, carrying its slightly screechy signature combined with the freshness of hundreds of orange blossoms. Noticeable thing is that it’s not a cold note but more warm and inviting one. Just a little bit later its warmth takes a shape of a soft and creamy veil. Its thanks to ylang ylang that it feels this soft & embracing. Through this flower Cap Néroli becomes slightly exotic. Jasmine provides floral sensuality and tropical sensation as well.

Drydown of Cap Néroli is especially interesting if you ask me. It features a decent amount of oakmoss that thanks to its fragrance that is a bit like a sun-dried shrub, with hints of something green and dusty, it blends in beautifully. Considering the fact that none of the notes have fully disappeared yet, the complexity of zesty citrus, warm neroli surrounded by flowery exotism and now also this chypre element make this new Patricia de Nicolai perfume something more than just an average summery fragrance. Not to mention that it’s extremely wearable (not just for the summer!)

Cap Néroli from Nicolai Parfumeur Createur is a perfect example that you don’t have to work with 20, 30 or even more ingredients to create an interesting composition. It’s also a great proof that summery scents don’t have to be cool at all to bring freshness to the one who’s wearing them. I give this perfume a big thumbs up for a good job in creating it. As an eau de toilette it has optimum longevity of 5-6 hours and has medium-sized sillage that becomes more like skin scent after few hours. It’s available in 30 ml, 100 ml and 250 ml bottles (plus a 15 ml refillable travel spray in case of the latter one). Does it Cap Néroli sound good to you? It’s price is also very reasonable.

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Innocent me, Nicolaï Rose Royale

It’s May, probably one of the most magnificent months in a whole year. It’s a time when spring is in full bloom, showing its vivid colors like a butterfly that is proud of its colorful wings. Moreover to me it’s a month dedicated to flowers, especially rose, since one of the most precious of them is rose de Mai, a May rose. When you were young you probably read (or listened to) The Secret Garden, a novel by F.H. Burnett. What if I told you that I found a perfume that fits this author’s idea? A garden full of rose bushes. Would you be interested to take a peek inside of such place? Nicolaï holds the key & they let me borrow it, so I’d like to invite you to this fragrant asylum of natural beauty.

Rose Royale opens with a few drops of juicy bergamot that is slightly green-tinged. It feels quite uplifting and mouth-watering even though it doesn’t explode with citrus freshness like it often does. Here it’s more calm which is absolutely not a bad thing. After a few minutes this juicy & citric smell becomes more tart and changes color from yellowish green to blue that is almost black. Then black currant arrives on the scene, surrounding the wearer with its gorgeous aroma. Its tart fruitiness is a little zesty and has a delicately bitter flavor. It feels like an invitation to a spring garden party.

Rose, which is obviously a crucial element of Nicolaï Rose Royale appears around a twentieth minute mark. You will be surprised how interesting smell it possesses. It starts off as a very sheer scent. There is a lot of dewiness to it but the silky structure of rose petals is impossible to miss, even if black currant is still in the lead. With time it becomes stronger but no matter what it still remains a gentle accord. It’s the scent of light pink petals dancing in the wind before they finish their act and land on top of the pond. It’s also worth a mention that rose of Rose Royale smells very natural and its style makes me think of a beautifully green park where flowers bloom on their own.

rose-royale

It’s like they took an average rose and bottled it, rather than taking a super rose that is grown only for use in perfumery. Pastel color of the flower partially comes from musk and ambrette. These two envelope a rose bud with a layer of something that smells like clean fabrics, like a cotton – it gives a powdery and comforting facet. Musky aspect is more like a background note in Rose Royale. After a while the perfume gains a tad herbal side. Immortelle adds a chord that reminds me of green stems with a herb-like twist. Definitely not the way you normally associate with it. I like it a lot.

During next 2-3 hours the perfume slowly changes, in the meantime it also reveals a note of coriander. It has a spicy & dry smell that could be taken as similar to black pepper, but its less intensive. Passionfruit give Nicolaï Rose Royale a nice aromatic twist. In the drydown there’s a little bit of guaiac wood and sandalwood that create more substantial fundaments of this fragrance. But to tell the truth – among big, bold & oriental roses an offering from Nicolaï is a sheer and light interpretation of a rose garden. It represents a tranquil and sunny retreat. A real secret garden.

You could say that Rose Royale is like a pastel pink lace as it has a lot of lightness and transparency. It’s a fragrance that embodies innocence and purity. According to Rose Royale press release, Patricia Nicolaï and Axel Nicolaï wanted to create “a natural and fresh rose with a hint of fruity notes like the rose at the end of its stem” and they were inspired by roses growing in the garden of Palais-Royal in Paris. Rose Royale comes in eau de toilette concentration and has average projection and longevity of 5-6 hours. It’s available in 30 ml and 100 ml flacons.

[note] photo – my own; all rights reserved

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