Silk Way by Ted Lapidus is a wonderfully complex little thing. On Fragrantica they say it's a fruity floral; the name points towards an oriental base. Wearing Silk Way I get a different impression. The feel of this perfume is of an abstract wood-incense that morphs into a slightly sweet musk with a touch of labdanum. But on skin level there's also a barely-sweet peach skin note that adds lightness and joy to the composition when you pay attention. Silk Way certainly offers some contrasting elements: warmth and cool air, austere incense and fuzzy musk. There's something very modern and airy as the fragrance hovers around you, driving circles more than just projecting.
Ted Lapidus is not exactly a synonym for expensive perfumes. for as long as I can remember the fragrances from this line made appearances in drugstores and discount retailers. Lapidus' Creation, a great love from my high school years, was a cheap thrill even back in the 80s. But Silk Way, a fragrance you can buy online under $20 for a bottle (also look at those perfume kiosks at the mall) smells expensive. And have I mentioned sophisticated? Yes, I have, but it's worth repeating.
I was asked about similarities between Silk Way and the long-discontinued but equally fabulous Barbara Bui Le Parfum. Apparently, Silk Way was crowned as its dupe, but I don't think that's true. On my skin Silk Way is much more musky and fuzzy while Barbara Bui is mostly a sweet incense. Barbara Bui is closer to Le Labo Labdanum 18; the musky veil Silk Road creates for me is in the same category of Musc Ravageur which shares its touch of oriental spices. In any case, there's a good chance that this Ted Lapidus perfume will appeal to lovers of the perfumes I mentioned above, as well as (and I'm committing some serious heresy here) those lamenting the demise of Creed Angelique Encens. None of these are clones, but they have similarities that satisfy a certain taste and craving. One caveat: you must really love sweet musk.
Image: detail from a mural in the Mogao Grottoes, China.