Here's an interesting partnership: Amouage and Bergdorf Goodman. A NYC exclusive from a brand that was born in Oman, has a brilliant creative director who's based in London, and is deeply rooted in classic French parfumerie.
This month Amouage is releasing Beloved, a perfume created for Bergdorf Goodman that will only be available at the NYC department store. Christopher Chong, Amouage's creative director, says of himself : "I tell stories with fragrances". Here we have an attempt to tell the story of the Bergdorf shopper, and it's infinitely better than the one by Plum Sykes.
The press release is thankfully brief and free of purple prose. This is all it says:
"Beloved engages the elegance and complexity of the modern woman: strong, empowered, animated, in control".Complexity is a key word here. Beloved is a somewhat powdery floral, but also wonderfully abstract. Yes, if we pay close attention, the rose and white flowers can be identified, but there's a lot more to this Beloved than a vague idea about flowers. Various flower notes slide and connect with each other briefly before they surrender to the warmer heart and base notes, all rich and full, with lots and lots of benzoin. The floral pattern is a very intricate and detailed embroidery on a luxurious fabric, so even someone like me, who is often wary of modern floral fragrances, can't resist. Beloved is beautiful, wearable and approachable without compromising sophistication.
A few years ago, fashion jewelry designer David Yurman debuted his signature perfume, a fragrance that was obviously created to smell like lots and lots of money, and ended up as refined as Teresa Giudice and her frenemies. One should not fear wearing Amouage's Beloved. You will not wake up as Countess LuAnn.
The note list reads a bit over the top. Surprisingly (or not), the end result is opaque and not too busy. I'd describe the dry-down and the way Beloved settles on my skin as a full-bodied unsweetened amber. It is powdery and has a dimly lit character, but the animalic notes are barely recognizable and don't roar at you. Actually, I'd have preferred it if they did, but I do understand the creative decision not to go there. Amouage perfumes are luxurious and sophisticated, but they're also meant to appeal and seduce the shopper in general and the Bergdorf woman in particular. Heavy skank wouldn't fly in Bergdorf's Beauty Level and that's ok. Someone needs to present a good example and use the right fork at dinner.
Sillage and longevity: polite but persistent.
Notes: Jasmine, Rose, Lavender, Clary sage, Clove bud, Chamomile, Cardamom, Ylang-ylang, Violet, Everlasting flower, Cistus, Benzoin, Olibanum, Patchouli, Cedarwood, Sandalwood, Castoreum, Civet, Leather, Musk, Vanilla, Maltol, Amber.
Beloved by Amouage will be available exclusively from Bergdorf Goodman beginning this month in 100 ml EDP bottles (rumored to have a pinkish purplish cap). I'll update the post to include price as soon as possible. The sample for this review was provided by Amouage PR and Bergdorf Goodman.
Vintage Bergdorf ads (1938, 1940s and 1969) from myvintagevogue.com and vintageadbrowser.com.