I had the best intentions to post a review of Quel Amour!, one of my favorite sunny fragrances. But the weather we've been having is on the Quel Horrible! side, and requires something completely different. Enter Parfumerie Generale, a line which makes me love even those scents that I don't really want to wear.
Ilang Ivohibe might have an impossible name, but the scent is very wearable. The notes (Madagascan ylang-ylang, California citrus orange, Egyptian jasmine, vanilla, tree woods, musk, according to LuckyScent) could have gone very wrong (how many white flowers and vanilla scrubbers can be found on the market?), but in this case the result is mellow, elegant and almost cozy.
The opening notes are very floral, and on my skin they had a soapy and almost sharp quality. But it warmed up rather quickly into a soft, pleasant orangey blend. There was something about the mix of fruit and ylang-ylang that for a second I got a similar feel as in Tom Ford's Black Orchid heart notes. But, while Ford's creation is deep, sexy film noir version of the notes, Ivohibe is more of the Doris Day edition, and I mean it in the nicest possible way.
My skin skipped the musk and most of the woods, and jumped right into the vanilla drydown. It's sweet, alright, but not cloying or silly. That's where the cozy aspect of the fragrance starts. It's not a classic comfort scent, because it gives an elaborate, ornamental feel, but it has an embracing femininity that makes a stormy day become much better.
Photo by F.C. Gundlach, 1955