Tag Archives: Stephanie Bakouche

Unicorn wish, Jul et Mad Mon Seul Désir

In a world where everyone seems to copy everyone (in more or less sophisticated way) and everything comes down to ‘who did it first’ so that others can streamline their ideas towards this one specific concept, being original & creative has an extra value. There are many beautiful, poetic ways to describe a thing that is one of a kind. I especially like descriptions such as white crow or a unicorn. This latter one, a mythical creature leads us to a Middle Age tapestry from unknown artist, titled ‘The Lady and The Unicorn’. Julien and Madalina Blanchard were mesmerized by its beauty & elegance. They also noticed a writing on the tent, saying ‘mon seul desir’ – which became a fragrance name.

Mon Seul Desir has a surprisingly fresh opening that in its fruitiness especially accentuates citrusy tones of mandarin. At the beginning it smells very juicy, sweet, tart and absolutely mouth-watering. But in a wink of an eye the perfume starts to evolve. At first the mandarin accord becomes more sweet, turning into a candied fruit that is still very yummy. However after a couple more minutes it becomes more dusty. This dustiness starts to dominate until it becomes strong enough to realize that it’s a smell of nutmeg. It’s somehow dry & I usually perceive it that way – it’s kind of like a parchment.

Dry spiciness doesn’t last for long because 10 minutes later the character of the spicy vibe transforms from dry to more tingly, sparkly sensation with a gentle metallic vibe. It’s a pink pepper note that introduces this feeling to Mon Seul Desir. This material is quite popular among perfumers these days. Spicy flavor is an important part of new fragrance from Jul et Mad, that’s why nutmeg and pepper are not the only ones present in the formula. After a while coriander arrives providing a fresher take on spice notes. To my nose it’s also a little come back to a more dry phase.

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Spicy notes mix and entwine so that at some point it becomes difficult to separate one from another. They also tone down gradually – when they become more quiet it is the right time for osmanthus to shine. As an interesting fact I’ll mention that it smells quite unusual. There is an apricot-flavored tea aroma with some floralties underneath but normally it should smell quite fresh, luminous, but no… it smells more dark & dubious. It’s because of oud note that osmanthus’s radiance went down. There’s not much of it in Mon Seul Desir. Enough to introduce some changes but not to annoy the wearer.

After some time we’re back into the light! The oud is gone, the spiciness is very faint. In the drydown there’s a lot of bezoin. It smells very rich, balsamic & smooth. There’s some balmy creaminess to it that makes Mon Seul Desir smell very luxurious. Amber that smells resinous, slightly mineral and sensual is another source of radiance and luminosity. Leathery notes are quite tenacious, adding beautiful richness and substantivity to the composition. I like the complexity of this perfume and how it changes over time. Addition of gaiac wood adds some solidity and it’s blended with musk for a carnal dirtiness that has some animalic qualities to it as well. It awakens your wildest desires.

I’m a big fan of Jul et Mad as a brand, not only because Julien and Madalina are great people but more importantly because fragrances they create are of great quality & uniqueness. I have to admit that when I tried Mon Seul Desir first time in April, we didn’t click then but when I revisited my sample couple of weeks ago (when it started getting cold) and I thought it was phenomenal & people kept noticing a lovely scented trail behind me. Perfumer Stephanie Bakouche composed a beautiful perfume: rich and complex, that blooms beautifully on your skin. Its enveloping sensuality suits more occassions than just a cuddly evening with your partner. Longevity and sillage of this extrait de parfum are beyond amazing. It’s available in 50 ml bottle (simple box or luxury coffret) or 5 ml mini.

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When love is a curse, Jul et Mad Fugit Amor

Since their brand’s founding in 2012, Madalina and Julien Blanchard became known as connoisseurs of beautiful things. In their fragrance creations they conveyed beauty of different stages of love such as first meeting, falling in love or even honeymoon. They have also shown us a beauty of travel through their scents inspired by distant places and cultures. In a new chapter we get to know what kind of beauty they see in art forms of painting, sculpture and tapestry. One that I’m going to tell you about today was inspired by a Rodin’s work in marble that holds the same title.

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Fugit Amor reveal its presence on my skin in a very aromatic way. Right from the start I can smell a lot of ginger emanating from my skin. To my surprise it’s not as zingy and lemon-y as I used to know. Ginger in this perfume serves a purpose of more spicy ingredient. It carries a soft, fresh spiciness that is quite mouth-watering I must say, it nicely resembles the aroma of a yellow-tinged ginger pulp. However it doesn’t take long until the note starts to smell more brownish, as if you were smelling just its outer peel instead of pulp. It’s definitely becoming more earthy. It’s also getting more substantive and intensive as we speak.

Arising substance of Jul et Mad Fugit Amor comes from vetiver. This note also presents itself in quite aromatic and woody rendition. It has a wonderful sillage of a tender & elegant richness. At first its scent is more like a fragrant grass but then it slowly transitions into more woody territory, however its hard to say if it smells of any specific kind of wood. At some point there’s also a tingly sensation of piquancy, which absolutely makes sense as the perfume features pink pepper accord. I also noticed a crunchy texture at this stage, which is coming from cardamom.

After around 40 minutes I start to smell carnation note. Strength of this fiery flower is gradually building up, introducing a nice change to the sctructure of Fugit Amor. Its fragrance is warm and sensual, setting you in the mood for cuddles. Aside of the floral aspect there’s also a sweet clove facet to this chord. Once carnation accord accommodates on my skin a very interesting thing happens. My skin mutes the fragrance so that it becomes soapy and clean. I didn’t expect such turn of events but I have to say that I love it! Smelling this soapy vibe instantly made me think of a very rich, luxurious soap a barber would use in his salon to shave some gentlemen. It’s a little bit a’la Infusion d’Homme from Prada, but more dry-woody and spicy-floral. I truly fancy this effect.

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The smell of barbershop soap lingers on my skin for a couple of hours. During that time it continues to be clean but other notes shift – one moment it’s vetiver that is predominant, the other time it’s carnation. Once these few hours pass, a soapy vibe subsides & that’s when Fugit Amor start to effuse a generous dose of elemi. Its becoming balsamic in an instant. There’s richness and texture to this balmy aromaterial. There’s also something slightly salty and incensy about elemi here. Generally speaking new Jul et Mad turns out to be true chameleon on my skin.

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Drydown, which still carries the remains of woody veriver, warm carnation and exclusive soap smell, is becoming more woody again – this time thanks to cedar. It’s substantive but since it’s a late stage of development it is nicely muted. Because of its rugged character it brings more masculine connotations. Amber note adds brightness of its shiny facets. It’s a nice oriental touch to the composition. Fugit Amor also has musk among base notes. Combined with cedarwood it’s a tad dirty in a bodily way but it’s more sexy and seductive because of that. You wouldn’t be bothered by this sensation, I can promise you that.

Fugit Amor was composed for Jul et Mad by perfumer Stephanie Bakouche in her atelier. She mastered all of the ingredients she used, which resulted in a full-bodied composition that changes its shape several times during the day, so that it smells slightly different every time you smell it. Fugit Amor is very complex and quite unusual masculine carnation fragrance. My personal soapy twist to it was most thrilling part of it. Presented in extrait de parfum concentration, the fragrance is available in 50 ml flacon (in more pricy luxury coffret version or in a cheaper box packaging). Its longevity is impeccable – applied in the morning it still smells in the evening, leaving a gentle trail behind the wearer. It’s a beautiful and elegant composition. Modern and classy at the same time.

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