One Thousand Scents

Friday, December 06, 2013

Now and Then: Yves Rocher Cocoa Collection Shower Gels

Normally I post every Friday, but technology threw a big old monkey wrench into my plans in the form of a hard-drive breakdown a few Saturdays ago. I was shocked to discover that I had had my current Mac for four and a half years, and considering the way I use a hard drive, I'm not surprised that it imploded. Luckily, I always keep a complete backup, so I wasn't worried about losing anything important.

However, due to a series of unpredictable mishaps, each less interesting than the last, my computer stayed in the shop for over two weeks, which meant no blogging and no a lot of other things, and you may well say "Oh, boo hoo, First World problems," and you would be right, because I do have another computer in the form of an iPad, but still: not having a desktop computer, which I use for pretty much everything, was a real inconvenience to me. I don't have a car or a house but I have my data and I need access to it.

Anyway, it's back in the saddle and on to scented pleasures such as the Christmas limited-edition shower gels from Yves Rocher. Three years ago, the company released an Orange et Chocolat EDP with matching shower gel and hand soap. I was so intoxicated with the smell, which is precisely that of a Terry's Chocolate Orange, that I bought all three, and then when the season was over and everything was half price for Boxing Day, I bought another five bottles or so of the shower gel, which, rationed out, lasted me until earlier this year.

So you can imagine my delight when I discovered that they were re-releasing the Chocolate Orange shower gel as their Christmas limited edition this year, along with two new scents: Chocolate Raspberry and Chocolate Pistachio. (Well, they call it Cocoa, but it's not; it's chocolate, sweetened, without any of the dustiness or salt we associate with cocoa powder.)
The Raspberry smells mostly of rather synthetic raspberry, a step up from Kool-Aid; the overall effect is of a thin-shelled chocolate filled with sugary fruit syrup. Not dreadful, but not highly recommended either, except perhaps for the young. At least the texture is improved over the last iteration: it's thicker, less runny.
I never thought of pistachios as having much of a scent, and the Pistachio shower gel smells more like almonds than anything else, with very little chocolate to it, even less than the Raspberry. Pleasant enough if you like a generic, unidentifiable nut aroma with a hint of floralcy, but it doesn't really have much to recommend it.
But the Orange is at least still a complete delight; the perfect balance of chocolate, vanilla, and orange. It's a shame they didn't re-release the EDP as well (I still have a half bottle from three years ago), but the liquid soaps leave a trace of scent on your skin which is pure joy for the five or ten minutes that you can smell it. All three scents are also available in what amounts to a large Christmas-tree ornament filled with shower gel adrift in sparkles. I wish they'd really committed to it and made the ornament even more ornamental, with a flanged metal cap and a hanging loop


and maybe some snowflakes printed on it, but they had a colour scheme and an aesthetic, and they were bound to stick to it, I guess.
You can also get all three scents as hand soaps, which is the shower gel in a pump bottle for a dollar more; as hand cream; as body lotion; and as lip balm.

If I were you, I would stock up on the Orange. You will not regret it.

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