One Thousand Scents

Thursday, June 19, 2008

30 Demeters in 30 Days: Day 19, Lavender

I'll keep this simple: Demeter Lavender is gorgeous.

Lavender is a very complex smell, and, to complicate matters even more, there are different lavenders (at least 25) with different collections of aromatic components. The one North Americans are most familiar with is English lavender, which is softer, richer, and somewhat less camphoraceous (camphor is the smell of mothballs and Vicks Vaporub) than the others.

Demeter Lavender begins with a spike of brilliant greenery, which rapidly gives way to lavender's familiar clean, fresh scent, floral but not flowery. There's a somewhat medicinal component to it (the camphor) and a subtle spicy warmth, which becomes a little more pronounced as the scent dries down. (You can easily see why lavender is considered an indispensable bedrock of men's perfumery.) Not much in the way of lasting power, as usual, but while it hangs around, it's sensational.

By the way, if you were one of those people who was told that the word "lavender" comes from the same word as "lavatory", which is to say Latin "lavere", "to wash" (also the root of French "laver", with the same meaning), then you have been grievously misinformed. (Instead, it's related to "livid".)

(Also by the way, if you're mad about lavender, Yves Rocher has an excellent lavender bath oil which doubles as a perfume and a massage oil. I prefer the Demeter, because it's more complex--not as "clean"--and not oily, but if you have dry skin, I can recommend the Yves Rocher wholeheartedly; great smell, great price.)



  • he said, "most masculines are crap", which is a little stronger than your usual line.
    Do you think he's serious about the carrot?

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 12:10 AM  

  • He (which is to say Chandler Burr) could be serious about the carbon-dioxide extract of baby carrot. Maybe it smells fantastic, with overtones you don't ordinarily smell. I dunno. Maybe he's just messing with our heads. I wouldn't put it past him.

    When he says that "most masculines are crap", he's right, and also most feminines are crap as well, because Sturgeon's Law correctly dictates that ninety per cent of everything is crap. (What he actually said is, “Ninety percent of science fiction is crud, but then ninety percent of everything is crud”.)

    My criterion for a scent is pretty simple. Does it bring me pleasure? It doesn't need to be a wildly innovative work of art (although those are wonderful and have their place). It just has to make me happy.

    By Blogger pyramus, at 3:57 AM  

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