Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Sample Give-Away & Review: Opus V from Amouage (2011)



Some orris perfumes accentuate the material's austere, chilly demeanour, whereas others are clearly an exercise in taking its characteristic feature - the parched, poetic, woody bleakness - and placing it within a more hot-blooded context. An excellent recent example of the latter style is Dior Homme, which used baked fruit notes to warm up iris' glacial heart.


Opus V - the latest release from Amouage's Library Collection - tries to raise the temperature even higher by marrying the wintry dryness to a gutsy mix of boozy red berries and - as you might expect from the house's Omani heritage - an animalic brew of oud and civet. The result is distinctive, diffusive and highly tenacious... but I'm just not sure I like it. To my nose, there's something about the dosage of the more torrid ingredients that frequently tips the composition into tacky, trying-too-hard territory.

However, in the interests of fairness, I should point out that Madame Persolaise finds it extremely addictive... and her taste in perfumes is superb. What I took to be tawdry, she read as rich, enjoying the all-encompassing headiness of what is unquestionably a potent concoction. What's even more interesting is that most women - and hardly any men - on whom I sprayed this fell into a mini-swoon, so maybe I just need to accept that this one isn't for the boys. Never mind: we've still got Dior Homme.

[Review based on a sample of eau de parfum provided by Amouage in 2011; fragrance tested on skin.]

For a chance to win a sample of Opus V - generously provided by Amouage - please leave a comment on this post on the topic of unpopular perfumes which you happen to love OR popular perfumes which you can't stand. Please read the terms and conditions below before entering the draw.

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Give-Away Draw Terms & Conditions:

i) the draw will be open until 10 pm (UK time) on Sunday 1st May; ii) the winner will be selected at random and announced on this blog; iii) if the winner has not made contact with me before Sunday 8th May in order to claim his/her prize, an alternative winner will be selected; iv) readers from anywhere in the world are eligible to enter; v) by entering the draw, you indicate that you are willing to pay customs charges (if applicable) and that customs regulations in your country permit you to receive an alcohol-based perfume / perfumery product posted from the UK; vi) if the prize is lost in transit, it will not be possible for a replacement to be sent; vii) the address of the winner will not be kept on record, nor will it be passed on to any third parties; viii) I take no responsibility for the composition of the perfume, as regards potential allergens and/or restricted materials.

Persolaise.

38 comments:

  1. A popular fragrance which I simply cannot stand is Kouros by YSL. I sprayed it once on my neck and for the rest of the day all I could taste was Kouros.

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  2. Ah Philip, I feel your pain. Kouros smells like urinal cake. Body Kouros is Joop! So I have a love/hate relationship with Body Kouros as Joop! was one of the first fragrances I owned.

    Persolaise, I'd say I happen to love Exclamation! That real nostalgic hit I get from it reminds me fondly of my sister and growing up with her. It's something I'd obviously NEVER wear but if I pass by it in Boots I have to stop and smell it again. From what I can remember it's not exactly a revered fragrance so maybe this counts!

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  3. Examples of unpopular scents that on my skin are smelling wonderful and really love them: Love in Black from Creed and Kenzo Jungle L'Elephant. On the other side , in spite of the fact that I adore tuberose scents I can not stand Poison and I've tried so hard.....

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  4. A popular scent I can't abide (since we're talking about iris), is Prada Infusion d'Iris.
    I find it screechy and loud. I don't think it's just my skin, either - if I smell it in the street, I wince.

    I'll be coming to the Tauer event. They are always such a pleasure to attend.

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  5. Another iris, which I had to scrub, is Iris Silver Mist. It was metallic and dirty on me.

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  6. I have to join in with the commenter above who hated Prada's Infusion d'Iris. (Actually, I'll extend that to the entire 'Infusion' line!) To me, it's an iris with commitment issues - too wan, too thin, too...little of everything that makes iris great to begin with. WHat's far, far worse is it took me seven tries before I found something on my skin that did not smell like Elnett hairspray. Ergh. The horror.

    On the other hand, I must have a thing for mentholated moth balls/petrol/gasoline, because I do love a difficult tuberose - Lutens' Tubereuse Criminelle, and what's more - I like that initial blast of terror, too!

    I definitely have a thing for swoon-worthy, heady, smoky iris, so Persolaise, I'd be ecstatic to be given a chance to try this!

    ANd no, you don't have Dior Homme all to yourselves. I wear it as often as I dare! ;-)

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  7. Philip, I must confess that I seriously enjoy wearing Kouros, but I'm aware it's not to everyone's taste.

    You're in the draw.

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  8. Liam, d'you know, I don't think I've ever actually smelt Exclamation. I'll have to stop myself from walking straight past it next time.

    You're in the draw too.

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  9. AlexP, Poison is in my Top 10, but I don't really wear it: I just love smelling it, and it holds a lot of sentimental value for me. But you're right, it isn't the easiest smell to love.

    Your name's on the list.

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  10. Tania, I can't say I'm fond of any Pradas, but I know some people love them.

    And I'm really pleased that you're planning to attend the Tauer event. I'm going to do my best to be there too.

    You're in the draw, by the way.

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  11. Alice, I was SO looking forward to trying ISM when I went to Lutens before Christmas, but then I smelt it and thought: I'll stick with Apres L'Ondee.

    You're in the draw too.

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  12. Tarleisio, I wondered when someone would write that Dior Homme isn't just for hommes.

    If you win the sample, please let me know what you think of it. I'll be curious to learn if it ticks all your 'heady iris' boxes.

    And having typed the above I don't really need to say that you're in the draw too :-)

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  13. Popular with perfumistas or popular with regular folk? :) I don't understand why Miss Dior Cherie is popular with anyone, to me it smells just like cheap beer in a can (specifically Coors). I also find Tocade much too sweet and soapy.

    As for something unpopular that I like ... how about HeWood by Dsquared? I'm inordinately fond of it. Rarely wear it but just love to smell it in the bottle.

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  14. Elisa, I don't mind how you interpret 'popular'.

    I really don't get the fuss about Cherie either. My wife was given a bottle as a gift, but she can rarely bring herself to wear it.

    As for HeWood, that's another one I'll have to add to my list of must-trys.

    You're in the draw.

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  15. I love several unpopular scents, including Vivienne Westwood Boudoir and Dior Addict. As far as popular scents I can't stand? Only about 90% of them. One thing I'm totally perplexed by is the popularity of Bond no. 9 fragrances. I've tested about 20 of them, and the only one I liked was Chinatown, but I didn't like it so much that I'd buy a bottle. I'm learning to not dismiss mainstream or even drugstore scents so easily though, I know not everything is as terrible in real life as it is potentially in my head, it just takes a certain patience to wade through it all. By the way, very interested in trying Opus V! Thanks for the draw.

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  16. I'm not sure anybody can beat this one: I do not like Chanel No5. For years I kept coming back to it, trying and shrugging my shoulders. Not only I didn't want to wear it I sincerely couldn't understand what everybody liked about it. Less than a year ago the appreciation suddenly came, I started seeing (well, smelling) its beauty. But I still do not want to own or to wear it.

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  17. Unpopular perfumes that I love: Lorenzo Villoresi Teint de Neige (aka death by powder), Lancôme Miracle, Paul Smith La Rose, Costume National 21, Hermès Un Jardin après la Mousson...

    And the other way round. Popular perfuems that I dislike or don't work for me: Thierry Mugler Angel, Robert Piguet Fracas, Prada Amber, Coco Mademoiselle and many Serge Lutens (especially when they smell like licorice like Chypre Rouge or like bitter almond, like Louve).

    I would love to be entered in the draw :) Thanks!

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  18. How about a popular fragrance note? I know it's not at all original, but I loathe tuberose in almost all interpretations.

    I thought that I could happily ignore the Opus collection, but V is sorely tempting me!

    Thanks for hosting the draw :)

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  19. Popular perfumes I can't stand would have to be Thierry Mugler's Angel and A*Men - they're just too cloying for my tastes!

    Unpopular perfumes I adore include Hermes' Un Jardin Apres La Mousson and Badgley Mischka (I don't get why people think it's too fruity! It's beautifully boozy!)

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  20. Carrie, I've yet to smell a Bond No. 9 I like... and don't even mention Creed!

    You're in the draw.

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  21. Undina, Le Monstre is, as you know, the best selling scent in the word, but I know several people who can't stand it, including my mother, who has been in perfume retail for about 30 years.

    It happens to be one of my favourite perfumes of all time... but you're allowed not to be in awe of it ;-)

    Your name's on the list.

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  22. Isa, thanks for your list. I'm almost too frightened to admit this, but since you've been so brave, I think I'd better confess that many Lutens leave me decidedly unmoved. And I think Hermes' monsoon garden is a fascinating perfume.

    You're in the draw.

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  23. deeHowe, that's fair enough. Maybe you'd like Dior' New Look 1947. It's a tuberose without the more off-putting elements of the flower.

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  24. Cutecandyhearts, another vote for Monsieur Ellena's monsoon garden, eh?

    You're in the draw... and deeHowe, I forgot to say that you're in the draw too :-)

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  25. Currently I'm fishing for two perfumes on Ebay. One I'm embarrassed to admit to non-perfumistas because it's Britney's Believe, and the other I wasn't embarrassed to admit until readin this thread, because it's Infusion D'Iris.

    I find it soothing and appropriate on Pacific NW rainy days. On sunny days I'm preparing mentally for the season change with Pacifica's French Lilac, but dark days I'm relying on iris and violets (via Insolence) to get me through.

    There is some smug iconoclastic consolation in knowing Believe is considered Britney' least popular fragrance.

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  26. Samberg, you must never be embarrassed about your eBay perfume temptations ;-)

    I've never smelt Believe, so I'm not about to pass judgement...

    You're in the draw.

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  27. I hate anything featuring jasmine, so Jo MAlone's Honeysuckle & Jasmine, for example, is a big yuck for me! I also hate Miss Dior Cherie and all similar sickly sweet offerings, usually from celebrities.

    My favourite fragrance is Picaroon from the Haus of Gloi. I have several of their vials and it's a beautiful clean scent. I just wish it lasted longer!

    Kathrine

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  28. A popular fragrance that I do not like .... I just couldn't stand Serge Lutens Santal de Mysore on my skin .. it went horrible, I don't know what it was, but it was awful.

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  29. Product Pixie, Picaroon is an amazing name. I'll have to try that some day.

    You're in the draw.

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  30. Proximity, sandalwood can be a very tricky note on some people's skin.

    You're in the draw too.

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  31. I adore Kingdom by Alexander McQueen but most people hate it because they it smells like a lady garden. I don't see the resemblance myself...

    On that note, please enter me into the draw :)

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  32. I can think of 3 "popular" scents right off the top of my head that I absolutely without a doubt HATE: Miss Dior Cherie, Flowerbomb by Viktor & Rolf, and Mugler's Angel. They all cause an almost immediate gag reflex. :)

    Thanks for the entry! I've been dying to sample any and all of the Opus scents!

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  33. Voyagetocythera, I quite like Kingdom too, although I haven't smelt it for a while.

    You're in the draw.

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  34. Gastronomic Goddess, I always chuckle when I read the name 'Flowerbomb' because of the fuss that its bottle caused at airports.

    Your name's on the list.

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  35. *** THE DRAW IS NOW CLOSED ***

    Thanks for all your entries.

    The winner will be announced on Persolaise.com within the next few days.

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  36. Ooops, I missed the deadline for the draw...!

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  37. Kev, sorry :-(

    Keep your eyes open for the next draw.

    ReplyDelete
  38. *** THE WINNER OF THE OPUS V DRAW HAS BEEN SELECTED ***

    Please visit www.persolaise.com for further details.

    ReplyDelete

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