A women who doesn’t wear perfume has no future – Coco Chanel
My future is uncertain but I certainly have a past when it comes to perfume. The first perfume I called my own was Diorissimo, given to me by my mother as a birthday present when I was twelve. It is the perfect scent for a young girl; very crisp and fresh with lily of the valley as the predominant note. I adored it and wore it every day, which was a bit extravagant for the local primary school. I then graduated to the classic Chanel No. 5, a fragrance I have worn on and off for most of my life.
On my 19th birthday a friend of mine gave me a bottle of Angel by Thierry Mugler. I wore it throughout my early 20s and I think it is the scent most people associate with me. My boyfriend at the time had to have his pillows dry cleaned when we broke up as they were completely permeated with it. But then Angel became very popular and every third girl was wearing it and so it was time for a change for me.
Since then I have tried a few different perfumes but none of them truly suited me. I wore Opium for a while but my mother has worn this for most of her life and so I felt like an imposter. I tried Douce Amere by Serge Lutens but it was too sweet. Another boyfriend bought me a bottle of Amber by Marc Jacobs, but it’s only available as an eau de toilette and has little staying power. I tried Prada Parfum but again it became too popular. I am in danger of becoming the Goldilocks of the perfume world; I want one that’s just right!
A couple of weeks ago I was in town with my sister, both of us in a jubilant mood as she had just bought her wedding dress. (As as aside, she will be the most beautiful girl in Ireland on her wedding day. The dress is stunning, made even more so by her beauty.) We passed the Chanel section in Brown Thomas and stopped at the display for Les Exclusifs, a range of eight perfumes. And there, I fell in love. Unlike Bono, I think I have found what I’m looking for.
It’s called Coromandel. It strikes just the right balance; oriental with amber notes, a hint of something fresher on top, perhaps citrus. I wore it all day and eventually my sister and I made the trek back to Chanel to find out how much it cost. €200, which is rather more than I had anticipated. I think my ever-evolving shopping list now needs to be recalculated with Coromandel taking the top spot. I just have to smell like that every day.