Tuesday, August 09, 2011

Le Labo Bergamote 22

Bergamot is the smell of mornings. A strong cup of Earl Grey tea soothes crankiness and ushers in the day a little more kindly. It smells good, after all. Bergamote 22 from Le Labo opens up with that bracing efect of bergamot and other sharp citrus fruit such as grapefruit and lemon. It's a little peppery and nose singeing in the best possible way; You will wake up after spraying.

Bergamote 22 is dry and tart. A linear citrus with a strong base of cedar and a just a hint of vetiver. What you smell is what you get from start to finish, and it doesn't apologize for it. I've worn this Le Labo perfume indoors and out, in airconditioned rooms on and hot humid days. Bergamote 22 stays strong and reliable and doesn't fade even 12 hours after spraying (I use quite  bit, though. Five or six sprays easily).   There's a  layer of almost coniferous green right after the simple citrus settles and that's probably as interesting as it ever gets. Perfumer Daphne Bugey who composed Bergamote 22 for Le Labo created a strong perfume that doesn't try too hard. It's there and it smells good. Some days that's a very comforting thought.

Notes (from Luckyscent): bergamot, petitgrain, grapefruit, nutmeg, orange blossom, aspic, cedar, amber, musk and vetiver.

Bergamote 22 ($58, 15ml)  and the rest of the Le Labo line can be found at Barneys, Luckyscent and Le Labo boutiques around the world. I highly recommend taking advantage of Le Labo's discovery set that lets you order 3 vials of different perfumes, 5 ml each for $58 (available online from lelabofragrances.com).

Photo by Saul Leiter for Vogue UK, October 1966 (dress by Frank Usher).


  1. I love Bergamote 22. It smells like sunshine. I know it's not a complicated or a tremendously sophisticated fragrance, but as you said - it smells good. Really good.

  2. May I ask a fragrance question not about this? Once you said you didn't like something when you were dabbing it on and started to like it when you were able to spray it. Does it make such a difference? I'm asking because I like rollerballs...the cuteness, the small amount, the cheaper price. Does getting something in a rollerball version mean it won't smell the same as the 'real' thing?

  3. StyleSpy, yes, some days this hits the spot the way a complex and multi-layer perfume just can't.

  4. Anon, very often there's a huge difference in the way perfume acts and reacts. Spraying coats more skin with a fine mist, while dabbing puts a concentrated amount on few (and often smaller spots). This affects the way the perfumes spreads around you, the amount of sillage and the tenacity of certain notes; all of that affects the way you smell and perceive your perfume.
    I know what you're saying about rollerballs, but personally I'm not a fan despite the small amount for a better price. The main issue with rollerballs is the skin contact- the little ball goes back from skin to perfume and contaminates the juice with tiny skin flakes and oils. I had to rollerballs that I decanted into spray atomizers.

  5. I own this and it's one of the few citrus scents that really holds my interest, probably due to the vetiver and amber in the drydown. I am amazed at the staying power, it really lasts a long time, if I spritz vs. dab, the sillage is quite impressive.


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