I imagine that the opening notes of Perles might be experienced by some as rather alarming: a blend of spicy, citrucy and very pungent geranium and Bulgarian rose effortlessly wrap around the skin like a vintage lace cuff. This tart opening has just enough sourness to keep things interesting; a yellow-ringed cobalt blue snake that upon closer inspection is not really poisonous. Behind these initial sharp edges, a smooth, flatter base is struggling to emerge, enabling the wearer to experience two dimensions at once as the fragrance begins to develop on the skin. Inhaling close, one can begin to appreciate the polished character of iris forming a harmonious amalgam with that very distinctive love-me-or-hate-me quality of musty white pepper. The woody, mossy notes at the base of this simple yet beautiful blend, bequeath a rather masculine element to the end result, ever so slightly reminiscent of Z by Zegna. This probably comes as no surprise, since iris, cashmere woods, patchouli, oak moss and white pepper are notes they both share. Subsequently, I find myself thinking that Perles de Lalique is a good candidate for a female fragrance that can be carried off equally well by both sexes. I have not yet experienced its development on male skin, but I can say that on me, Perles is a subdued but beautiful chypre. It is all sensible earrings and perfect hair, calm sophistication and self-confidence that form a vision of immaculate dignity. Yes, for me Perles de Lalique was one of the most pleasant surprises of the year 2006.
Images courtesy of www.doctissimo.fr and imagesdeparfums.forumactif.com