So I'm moving from Princeton, New Jersey to Santa Fe, New Mexico. The last 2 weeks I've been making my way slowly across the country - taking a leisurely tour of the southeastern states and now I find myself in Dallas, Texas. So far, I've found most of the main streets and back roads of America to be fragrance free with virtually zero shops selling interesting perfumes, especially not any of the niche gems. Even in New Orleans I didn't find much perfume. New Orleans was much more about antiques, food, casinos, strippers and Voodoo Juice (my drink of choice for a few days).
About six months ago I read about Le Lebo Aldehyde 44, wanted it desperately, then realized it was a Dallas exclusive. Thinking I'd never be in Dallas, and not knowing anyone in Texas, Aldehyde 44 quickly vanished from my mind. Until today when I strolled into Barney's Dallas. I made a perfumista dash for the Le Labo counter and could barely manage a cursory hello to the sales associate while I sprayed myself with this gorgeous elixir named Aldehyde 44. OH MY GAWWWWWD. It was love at first sniff. One of my top 5 favorite perfumes is Chanel No. 22 and Aldehyde 44 bears a strong family resemblance.
Created by perfumer Yann Vasnier, Le Labo Aldehyde 44 is without a doubt my favorite from the Le Labo line. Granted I haven't tried every single Le Labo scent available but I do have Iris 39, Rose, Labdanum, Ambrette and today I sniffed Oud. Oud, by the way, is much more intriguing and wearable than I'd previously imagined. Given my affection for aldehyde embellished florals, Aldehyde 44 does not disappoint, in fact, it's much more amazing than I'd imagined. It opens with that sparkling, frothy fizz of Chanel-esque aldehydes and is also reminiscent of Piguet's Baghari. Aldehydes, especially this white floral type which you would recognize if you have Chanel No. 22 or No. 5 are especially radiant and sophisticated. Aldehyde 44's aldehydes are flawlessly white and snowy without the usual powdery quality found in this fragrance style. The initial burst of Aldehyde 44 makes me huff my arm. I initially wrote "The initial burst of Aldehyde 44 makes me WANT TO huff my arm" but I removed the want to because I'm simply huffing this stuff - not just wanting to - I'm doing it.
Somehow Aldehyde 44 courts the haughty memory of Chanel No. 22 and No. 5 but veers away towards it's own warm, sensual, femme fatale composition. I adore Chanel No. 22 in all it's haughty glory, but Aldehyde 44 is earthier, more floral, modern and sexy.
Le Labo's Aldehyde 44 is a beautiful perfume. For me, it was worth stumbling upon in Dallas and paying the $400 price tag (100 ml size). Yes, I felt it irresponsible if I did not mention the price of this lovely juice. It's expensive.
Notes: aldehydes, tuberose absolute, narcissus absolute, jasmin sambac, musks and woods