I planned to post a review of Centaure, one of my favorite MPG masculines, but this post by Denyse on Grain de Musc resonated with me so much I had to add my own point of view. After all, I've been blogging for over four years, so the ennui and disenchantment with large parts of the beauty, fashion and perfume industries feels very familiar. I've said in the past that these are strange times for perfumery- the industry and the art itself. To paraphrase Tolkien, the world is changing and we can smell it in our eau and in our oakmoss.
Denyse is asking some important questions:
When was the last time you were enchanted by a perfume, and which one(s)?As a blogger, these issues take up a somewhat different direction. If I'm going to keep doing this, I have to go out there and smell the drek. I don't have to write about all of it, so I usually don't, but I need to know what's out there for the purpose of semi-intelligent reviews. I don't bother with everything and I definitely don't go out of my way to smell it all. I'm lucky to live where I do and have access to just about anything I could ask for- niche, luxury and mainstream. But there's only this much time and skin to spare, so I can be selective. Actually, I have to be selective for the sake of my sanity.
Are you starting to suffer from launch fatigue?
And are you restricting the number of houses/perfumers you follow as a result?
Do you feel moved to seek out new voices online? Or is it all just too much to keep up with?
It's not much different when it comes to my other blogging interests. I do not cover every brand of makeup and skin care on the market. I can't try every lipstick, mascara or face wash, and I don't want to do that. I'm often asked why I don't write about certain popular companies. The answer is that I don't want to. I have a certain point of view and I want my blog to be a reflection of me and my tastes, not of every marketing pitch and press release in the universe.
We all know there are too many products and too many new releases. It's true for lipstick and it's true for perfume. Like most of us, news about a new exclusive niche houses no longer thrill me and send me rushing to order samples and question the guys at Aedes, Begdorf and the rest of the usual suspects for all the details. I wonder if there's really an artistic vision behind the new perfume entrepreneur whose PR team is emailing me enthusiastically or if it's just another cynical jump on the very tired bandwagon to make a few bucks (because we all know that perfume-making is the way to untold riches. Right). So, yes, it's easier to stick with what I know. I will never skip a new Tauer (a review of Orange Star is coming this week or next), the work of Vero Kern (ditto, regarding the new EDPs that are about to launch) and I'm always excited about a new creation from one of the Christophers (Sheldrake and Brosius). I might not feel the rush to be the first to report on anything (though it's nice when that happens), but I'm excited to be out there, smell and experience.
Compared to early 2006, when I started blogging, there really is an extraordinary number of beauty, fashion and perfume blogs. Personally, I can't keep up with everyone everyday. I don't even try. But I like that the community is expanding. After all, one of our goals is to reach a wider audience, to make more people realize that there is so much more to perfume than the people who spray them in the face at Macy's. A few of the veteran blogs are no longer being updated. Some bloggers drifted away, got involved in other projects or simply lost their mojo. New blogs come and go. Hopefully, the best ones will find their niche and readership and we all will benefit from that.
With many thanks to Denyse who started the discussion and, as usual, made me think.
Art by Kirtsy Mitchell