One Thousand Scents

Thursday, May 04, 2006

Creamsicle: Comptoir Sud Pacifique Vanille Orange


I'm one of those people who finds Comptoir Sud Pacifique scents just about irresistible. I have five of them and have tried eight or ten more: with the lone exception of Safranier, which takes the medicinal smell of saffron just a little too far, they've all been winners.

One of their limited-edition, now-discontinued scents, Vanille Orange, is one of my favourites: even though once it's gone I'll never have it again, I use it with some abandon. It opens with a radiant burst of orange peel. The brilliance, which I suspect is bolstered with aldehydes, vanishes fairly quickly, and what comes after is not orange peel or even orange juice, but the pulpy smell of an orange itself, pith and all, mixed with a trace of spice and--unfortunately--with a somewhat artificial scent that resembles orange Kool-Aid. (In recent years, many agree, the company's scents have changed somewhat; they once had a reputation for natural scents, but now some people complain of the synthetic nature of some of their fragrances.)

Tucked inside the bright halo of orange is the classic CSP vanilla, but less sweet and assertive than one ordinarily expects; the balance is skewed very much towards the orange notes. (Anyone who knows Vanille Amande, say, or the salty-chocolate Amour de Cacao knows how intense the vanilla usually is, which is why Vanille Orange is such a surprise.)

Even for a CSP scent, this has remarkable longevity; sixteen hours after applying it, I can still smell it clearly, and what's more amazing, it hasn't died down to a mere whiff of vanilla--the orange note, though dimmed, is still clearly evident, something extremely rare for a citrus scent. I'm amazed that this didn't make it into their line: it was released in a 50-mL spray as part of a Christmas set (I can't remember what the other two scents were, and Google is no help, but I'm pretty sure at least one of them went into regular production), and despite the artificiality of that Kool-Aid note, it makes a terrifically bright and fresh summer scent.

Come to think of it, maybe it's the childhood memory of Kool-Aid and Creamsicles that makes the scent so great for summer.

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2 Comments:

  • The other two scents with CSP Vanille Orange were Vanille Fressia and Vanille Banane.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 12:40 PM  

  • So that's it! Thank you for the information. I wonder why Vanille Banane made it into the regular lineup and the other two didn't; I found Vanille Orange much more wearable than Vanille Banane.

    By Blogger pyramus, at 3:02 PM  

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