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The solitary opinion of my nose

orangeflowerFor some reason lately I’ve been having a hard time smelling more than one note in almost any perfume. I’m not talking about Amouages (though even they tend to boil down to their frankincense core). I’m talking just run of the mill perfumes, things I know or things I don’t. I smell them and I’m hit in the face with something FRONT AND CENTER that I can’t ignore after that.

Tried L’Arbre de Connaissance recently (I am really enjoying the new Jovoy line, well worth sniffing); was immediately smacked with COCONUT. All I could smell was coconut. Have some coconut! With a little umbrella coming out of it. Coconut wasn’t even in the notes. But, COCONUT! I could tell that it was supposed to smell like fig, somehow. (When I mentioned this on Twitter Nick Gilbert of Fragrant Reviews was kind enough to explain that coconut is often used to give a “milky” quality to scents like fig scents.)

Today I put on some Elie Saab (which I’ve reviewed before), because I am trying to rotate through bottles I own and give everything a wearing in its season. Every spring I crave orange flowers like nobody’s business; every spring I end up failing to buy a bottle of La Chasse aux Papillons, and fuffling through my other orange flowers until I no longer want to wear orange flowers. (I do want a bottle of Serge Lutens’ Fleurs d’Oranger someday; I do think that’s a pretty original orange flower.) But I can tell that the seasonal craving for orange flower is about over, because I put on the Elie Saab this morning and was again whacked in the face, this time with orange flower. “Hmph,” I thought, “Orange flower. Meh….awwrright.” And was not entirely satisfied with my choice until about an hour later when it had dried down into that (to me) irresistible heart that made Elie Saab such a runaway hit.

I can’t tell if this is something with my brain, or if my nose is reacting weirdly to allergy meds or something. (I stopped using Patanase nasal medication because I think it was interfering with my sense of smell). I can still smell other things sometimes, like the heart of Elie Saab; it’s just that what I overwhelmingly notice about the whole wearing of almost any perfume is only one note. This was happening to me at Sniffapalooza, too.

Does your sniffing apparatus do this too? Appear to behave in different ways at different times? Is it your nose developing? Or external forces?

Image is “Orange flower OOC” by Özgür Mülazımoğlu, via Flickr. Used under Creative Commons license; some rights reserved.

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2 comments to The solitary opinion of my nose

  • This just happened to me too! Idole de Lubin EdP. Saffron. All I could smell was saffron. In my notes, I actually wrote, “Is there something wrong with my nose?”

    • Judith

      I’m glad it’s not just me! Perfume is so different (fickle?) depending on the state of the weather, one’s skin, and one’s sinuses (I know I’m not the only perfume lover out there with environmental allergies).

      In other news, I’m not sure I could identify saffron if I had to. I’ll have to think about that. (I know Ari loves saffron and Saffron Troublant, for instance.) I’ve cooked with saffron but not consistently.

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