Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Acqua di Parma Profumo: don't overlook this chypre

As a lover of classic dry chypres I happened upon Profumo a few months back. I already had Acqua di Parma's Colonia, Iris Nobile edt and edp (both gorgeous) and
Colonia Assoluta. I like Acqua di Parma - their fragrances are all good to excellent
and it's hard not to appreciate the solidly simple bottles and screaming yellow
boxes (although the Profumo I have came in a bright red box). Both AdP's branding
and their fragrances are classic and well done.

When doing some research for this review I noticed that Marina over at Perfume Smellin'Things beat me to the punch - she did a nice review of Profumo last year. Marina is right on - Profumo is easy to acquire (now sold at Sephora), not terribly expensive, and excellent. Profumo is a chypre along the lines of Chanel's 31 Rue Cambon, and Ralph Lauren's Safari (though must less powerful than Safari).

I love pointing out overlooked gems. Profumo isn't mentioned much on POL or MUA.
31 Rue Cambon is splashed all over the place - not surprisingly since it's gorgeous - plus it's Chanel so there's the whole brand mystique going on there. Safari get's mentioned here and there - it was created by Ropion and it's discontinued so go buy some while bottles still remain! But Profumo, around since 1930, is exquisite and boasts over 300 separate ingredients.

Profumo is a classic retro styled chypre. I've been thinking about it lately because
I'm writing up my list of "must purchase" back up bottles now that the ghastly restrictions going into effect on January, 2010. Profumo is a dry, woody, floral chypre. Exquisite and classic are the adjectives that immediately spring to mind. I also think of custom tailored suits and tastefully elegant couture the likes of Gwenyth Paltrow and Nicole Kidman. Profumo is elegant and refined in an "old money" sort of way. This isn't the fragrance of a brassy, flashy new starlet. Profumo is the fragrance of someone with the aura of Catherine Deneuve. Profumo surrounds you in an aroma that seems confident, talented, wise, articulate, witty and beautiful. If you love perfume as much as I do you'll understand how it's easy to understand the personality of a perfume. Profumo has a personality that I aspire to - and like to wear on certain days, for specific instances where I want to exhibit these
traits. Of course, I can see how a person would like to wear this everyday, easily.

Is Profumo unisex? Of course.

The scent of profumo is one of those abstract chypres that's impossible to describe. Overall its dry, slightly woody, slightly floral and just a smidgen of the smoothest powder. On me, Profumo wears somewhat lightly, it's not a big blast of perfume, but a 'just right' average amount of sillage and longevity.

Top: bergamot, ylang-ylang and peony;
middle: jasmine, rose, French labdanum and amber
Base: oakmoss, patchouli, vetiver, sandalwood and musk.


Le Critique de Parfum said...

Absolutely gorgeous fragrance! A chypre extravaganza!

I wouldn't call it unisex though, it's a very feminine perfume to me, but there's nothing wrong for a man to wear a feminine perfume... ;-)

Anonymous said...

I recently got me one of the (probably) last bottles of the "red version" of Profumo. Decided on this one based on your review. My wallet ain't happy, but I definitely am! cheers, Wendy