The sample vial of Donna Karan's Black Cashmere has been sitting on the bottom of my sample stash for quite some time. Being related to Karan's Cashmere Mist, one of two fragrance I hate the most (well, other than anything ever made by Escada, but who wears that? No need to answer), I was never very interested in trying it.
A note regarding Cashmere Mist and why I dislike it: Looking at the list of this fragrance, one would think I'd find it fabulous- Top Notes: Bergamot ,Heart Notes: Jasmine, lily of the valley, Base Notes: Sandalwood, vanilla, amber, musk. My guess is that the lily of the valley is the offending element. I'm not a big fan of it in general, and nothing that contains ever smells good to me or on me. Cashmere mist smells extraordinarily vile on me, like something cheap and floral in a commercial, synthetic way (that was a polite way to say "manufactured by Glade") and I could never get why it is so popular. Until I caught a whiff of something that smelled very pleasant on my friend E. Who lives in the Midwest and came for a visit. I was floored to learn that it was my old nemesis, The Mist. The lesson is that there's a skin for every fragrance.
Back to the neglected vial in my drawer. When I finally cracked it open the first sniff was intrigue. The second was love . I could tell that this was different and lily-less. I could smell something spicy and pleasant. As soon as I put it on I was gone. Incense, saffron, and even more dark incense. The woody element, slightly charred and dry is more pronounced than the promised vanilla note on my skin, and that's a first. Black Cashmere deepens and darkens as the hours go by, settling into a rich but not overpowering aroma.
I know that most would find it to potent for daytime or summertime. But I live for fragrance like this and can pull it off easily. I wear it all day and enjoy its staying power. Refreshing it again before going out for dinner has made my husband very happy. He was all for its sex appeal and seductiveness, never complaining about the presence of rose.
Needless to say, a full sized bottle now resides on the shelf.