Tag Archives: Stephane Humbert Lucas

Perfume paradise of Esxence 2017 – day 3

Second day at Esxence was the busiest one for me. All the meetings I had and conferences I attended brough a lot of interesting thoughts and many of the perfume that I was able to smell on that day turned out to be really good discoveries. Cherry on top was a Masque Milano party & then staying at 10 Corso Como for a dinner with friends and newly met people. It was a great day!

Day 3 – Saturday, 25th of March

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Saturday was a 3rd & at the same time my final day at Esxence. After two previous days that I spent on intensive and excessive sniffing I was a bit tired and was ready to wind down a little bit. It was the most quiet day for me (but not a quiet day at the fair as it was open to the public) – I didn’t have any meetings planned which allowed me to walk around more casually and without rush.

I started my day by revisiting Jul et Mad stand as I wanted to talk to Madalina for a few minutes and I also wanted to try the fragrances again. The reason for that was that I smelled then the day before at quite late stage so I wasn’t sure if my perception was correct. Turned out it was and that Fugit Amor still turns into that almost fougere-like, vetiver and carnation blend that smells clean and soapy on my skin. I love the way it smells on me, even if I was the only person that made this fragrance change so much, as Stephanie Bakouche noticed when she was smelling it on my arm.

Then I was going to the conference organized by Osmotheque about fragrances of the 70’s. But before I managed to get there I had a quick chat with Puredistance team again, then I bumped into Gabriella Chieffo. She was not exhibiting at Esxence this year due to some health issues but she told me the brand is working on new release. She even mentioned to me the idea behind it, but I’m not telling you. By the entrance to the conference room I also met Olaf, an instagrammer that you might know as Vetyyver. We follow each other so it was nice to meet in person.

Back to the conference. The speaker for it was Patricia Nicolai, a very head of Osmotheque. During 1 hour lecture she guided us through various compositions, many of them were chypre. We smelled Revlon Charlie, Estee Lauder White Linen & Aromatics Elixir, Jean Couturier Coriandre and many more. It was a nice stroll down the history lane of the era when calone, maltol, jasmonates and damascones were first obtained in laboratory. They are still important part of perfumery.

Then I had a quick break with Pissara. Then I visited a stand of Welton, a brand from London. Their black, pillar-like bottles were quite attractive but I don’t really remember what were the fragrances like. Except of Bel Iris, which smelled like an iris and lots of dry paper, parchment. Intriguing.

Then I noticed that Stephane Humbert Lucas is presenting 2 new fragrances: Panthea and Wish Come True. But to tell you the truth I didn’t put my nose into them as they don’t have samples available on stand. In the past there were fragrances that I really liked and they said that they’re going to send out samples after the show. They never did!

As I was admiring some decorations at Making of Cannes – bottles lined up and standing in the spotlight as if they were movie stars I noticed Andy Tauer passing next to me. I stopped him of course and started some conversation. He mentioned working on some new interesting projects for Tauerville (perhaps this has something to do with his current trip to San Francisco, he made another of those hand-to-hand-only-while-he’s-there fragrances) He’s been also busy working on some special magazine for his distributors and retailers. Hope I’ll get a copy of it!

Later I had a quick stop at Verduu, a German brand that pairs fashion designers with perfumer (Mark Buxton) to make fragrances. Hien Le was quite nice. I especially liked the small size of the bottle, very perfumista-friendly. More discoveries followed few steps ahead.

When I dropped by Eta stand to say hi I was shown two new fragrances, Le Sixieme Parfum and Le Septieme Parfum. Both were committed by Luca Maffei. 6th fragrance was absolutely amazing, it contained tons of iris – soft, creamy, buttery and rich. 7th fragrance was focused on incense that was warm and spiritual. I’m going to explore Le Sixieme Parfum really soon to see how it behaves on my skin. I hope it will be just as good as on paper strip.

Afterwards I started yet another round around the entire Esxence area. I had a stop at Etat Libre d’Orange to smell You or Someone like You. I have to say that most scents by this house are difficult to me but the new composition, made in collaboration with Chandler Burr seems to be much more approachable and easier to love. I could smell basil and mint in the opening, however there won’t be any official notes for this fragrance. That’s what Chandler wished for.

There was some time for selfies with Muriel Madeleine, a time for Anatole Lebreton to show me his new travel set (great thing to have, you can select fragrances you want, duplicates are possible) I smelled Histoires de Parfums This is not a Blue Bottle 1.2 and 1.3 (yep, still no interest from the brand side to ask if I wanted to learn more). I also met Michelyn Camen from Cafleurebon. I saw her earlier briefly but now we could chat for a second.

I also met Angela Ciampagna. She was presenting her 2 currently existing collection. When I asked about the developments for future projects she told me with some sadness in her voice that the laboratory where they work on new formulas got damaged by the earthquake (there were so many in Italy lately) that they had to postpone new release, probably until next Esxence in 2018.

Then a quick whiff of all nominee fragrances of Art and Olfaction Awards and a peek at the Osmotheque vials with old-ish fragrances. When it got less crowded I decided to visit Unum. Filippo Sorcinelli was showcasing his latest work with a lengthy Italian name: Io Non Ho Mani Che Mi Accarezzino il Volto. Fitting the churchy style of the brand it smelled of incense that was warm thanks to tobacco and styrax. I liked it. The cap is covered with some black fabric.

At the Nomenclature stand I met Karl Bradl from Aedes Perfumery. Finally! I’ve been wanting to meet him but in fact it was our first live encounter ever. I was introduced to Lumen_esce, their 2016 release that smells like fresh and watery violets. The novely for 2017 is Shi_so – a fragrance featuring Glycolierral, a herbaceous molecule from Givaudan. The fragrance had uplifting, green aroma with hints of rhubarb. I will happily explore my sample when it becomes warmer.

Almost at the very end of the day I smelled 3 fragrances under the brand name of Teresa Helbig. It turned out these fragrances are a collaboration of Sara Carner (Carner Barcelona) and one of her sisters. Can you believe! Teresa was a lovely neroli-mandarin concoction warmed up by benzoin, Tangier Memories was leathery with hint of red berries while A Bulldog in the Atelier was warm, woody and spicy.

I spent my last minutes at The Mall sitting together with Neela Vermeire. We had a heart to hear conversation, admitted some facts that we both noticed and exchanged opinion on various topics. Together with Neela we have this policy that everything we say is confidential. Sorry guys! As I was about to leave the building I grabbed Sarah Colton for a moment so that we could have a photo together. I was one of the last who left Esxence venue. It felt weird and bit nostalgic to walk down the aisle with nobody around. I will be back for next year I suppose.

These 3 days passed really fast. I discovered not what I had to, but what I wanted. That’s a difference. When you come for the first time you want to try as much as possible. Over the years you learn that it’s only worth exploring what you truly want to explore. On Saturday evening it started to rain heavily and I still had a party to attend. Esxence party was at Spazio Gessi this year and dress code was to wear a flower. I got an artificial rose but my Airbnb host also helped me to make a flower out of empty plastic bottle! It looked wickedly interesting. I had to leave when the party was wild, I had to walk back (was too late for metro) and pack my suitcase.

On Sunday morning I was leaving Milan at 6 o’clock. It was still raining. The city was crying because I had to leave so soon, haha. I’m going to miss this city. I’m going to miss these people. And my world. Until I meet them again in Florence this September. I hope so.

I hope with these 3 parts of my Esxence trip you felt as if you were there with me.

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Blue velvet, SHL 777 Khôl de Bahreïn

As you might have probably noticed, in the perfume world there are brands that I avoid due to too much hype going on around them, or when in my opinion the packaging and bottle are over the top and hiding a very average juice inside of them. When perfumer Stephane Humbert Lucas decided to create his own fragrance line titled 777 (as 7 is his favorite numer and three 7s represent spirituality, protection and luck) this project quickly earned lots of interest among scent enthusiasts.

Back then I decided not to follow the general interest in Stephane Humber Lucas 777 line (SHL 777 for short) making a small mind-note that I want to try them at some point when the initial crowd quiets down. I didn’t seek the opportunity, it found me first. Mister Lucas has made an appearance with his brand at Esxence in March 2015 and his stand was one of the closest to the main entrance. It was also quite a big booth. As Megan really wanted to meet with him, we visited the stand together. Stephane turned out to be a very funny and easy-going man, we really enjoyed talking with him about fragrance. When it came to testing, there was one composition that mesmerized me.

The name of that perfume was Khôl de Bahreïn and on my skin it started with a very mild smell of fragile violet petals with a gentle hint of sweetness in the background. Within few minutes that sweetness started to build up and form something more substantial. Also violet aroma grew stronger on my and the smells combined into one pretty, luscious smell of candied violets. Few minutes later I noticed that as much as violet is slowly starting to dissipate, the sweet smell was still strong or even becoming even more intensive. At some point it even felt like visiting a candy shop where they offer hand-made sweets. As soon as you open the door of such place you are struck by the warm smell of sugar and caramel. That’s how Khol de Bahrein smells on me.

Further progres revealed few facets of resinous tones. They were balmy, powdery and sensual. They had this perfect substantivity that can be smelled on the skin and at the same time the feeling didn’t feel overpowering or cloying at all. Then, at some brilliant point around 40 minutes after applying, SHL 777 Khol de Bahrein unveils the iris accord. This is heaven! I have never smelled an iris perfume that would have a quality like this. To me it’s like the most sensual (and sexual) smell of iris one can even imagine. It smells incredibly rich and dense, as if you were smelling the raw material such as orris butter or orris absolute, not a composition diluted in alcohol. In addition to that, this iris feels very warm and embracing. As you smell it, you can easily imagine a velvely surface of the petals and feel their softness as you examine the flower.

I don’t know if other people experienced this as well by Khol de Bahrein in reaction with my body chemistry evolved from this brilliantly sensual & buttery iris to a very gentle suede leather note. It smells so beautiful yet so delicate, as if it was so thin as peach skin. As the time flies this composition from Stephane Humbert Lucas becomes even warmer when sandalwood joins in. Just as expected from a perfume with such magnificent build-up, wood note has been presented here in its soft, slightly sweet and smooth form. Ain’t nothing heavy about it as it’s light as a feather that provides you with wafts of very pleasant, vanillic woodiness.

Use of true ambergris enriches Khol de Bahrein with very warm and sensual effect that oscillates on the edge between sexy and animalic. I really like this effect as it gives me the impression that this perfume is tailored to suit the needs of all those who love to cuddle and experience very gentle touch interactions between two people. Peru balsam and musk are the finishing touches of this perfume, providing the last elements of this unbelievably pleasurable fragrance. To say that SHL 777 Khol de Bahrein is sex in a bottle would be an offense as there is nothing vulgar or dirty about it. It could be easily considered as ultimate cuddler or foreplay perfume. This smell is arousing for sure!

Khol de Bahrein from perfumer Stephane Humbert Lucas is haunting me ever since I tried it in March and I suppose that at some point I won’t be able to resist and will buy a bottle of it. This is an extrait de parfum and a little amount goes a long way so there is no way you are going to drain that 50ml bottle quickly. In a concentration this high the traces of fragrance can be even noticed after taking a shower (if you’re using a lightly-scented body wash), intimate, as often with extracts – it’s intimate, staying really close to the skin. Iris lovers – it’s a must try for you.

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