“The People v. Amarige” – Prosecution & Defense

The People v. Amarige – Case # 13-92745B

The Bailiff: “Oyez, Oyez, the Court is now in session. The Honorable Judge Charles Highblossom presiding. On the docket, The People v. Amarige, Case # 13-92745B. The charge is olfactory assault and battery. State your name and business before the Court.”

[A small, balding man rises]: “I am the District Attorney, Luke Sneering.”

[A tiny, dark woman rises]: “I am the Public Defender, Grace Hopeless-Causes, representing the Defendant, Amarige de Givenchy.” [She points to the table where Amarige sits. She is enveloped in the most luxurious white furs, drips gleaming diamonds, and wears the largest, frothiest hat this side of a royal wedding. The defendant’s chin is raised defiantly, her eyes staring straight ahead, but she nervously fingers her diamond choker.]

[The white-wigged judge bangs his gavel]: “The Prosecution may proceed.”


[The D.A., Mr. Sneering]: “Ladies and gentlemen of the jury. We are here to convict Amarige, from the house of Givenchy, with being the most heinous perfume in the world. Countless have fallen prey to her horrors. You will hear testimony from asthmatics whom we will wheel in from the Intensive Care Unit where they landed after a mere whiff of her olfactory napalm. You will hear of her ubiquity in the 1990s, Amarige 1990sassaulting you from every magazine perfume strip, invading your home through your mailbox, until there was no escape. You will hear from Luca Turin, the perfume expert, on how she is “truly loathsome,” a perfume he rated one-star, and which he hates the most in all the world. And, in the end, you will do the right thing: you will convict her of assault and battery, even though what we really should be charging her with are crimes against humanity!

Let us start at the beginning. Amarige was let loose upon the unsuspecting public in 1991, a fruity-floral Frankenstein created by the legendary nose, Dominique Ropion, who really should have known better! Her parts, according to Fragrantica, consist of:

top notes are composed of fresh fruit: peach, plum, orange, mandarin, with the sweetness of rose wood and neroli. The floral bouquet, very intense and luscious, is created of mimosa, neroli, tuberose, gardenia and acacia with a gourmand hint of black currant. The warm woody base is composed of musk, sandalwood, vanilla, amber, Tonka bean and cedar.

In those long-ago days, as the perfume blogger The Non-Blonde states so well, there was no escape from her fumed tentacles. You didn’t have to buy it to wear it.

[You] didn’t have to: you could go into a public building, a friend’s home or get on a bus and emerge with your hair and clothes smelling of it. Amarige was so recognizable and obvious that even I, lover of assertive perfumes, couldn’t deal with it. Not to mention the fact that it’s so very peachy you could feel the juice dribble on your chin.

The Non-Blonde may have had a baffling change of heart on Amarige, but she was right when she said that “women who maintain the old habit of marinating themselves in Amarige should have their noses and sanity examined.” (Frankly, I think the Non-Blonde should have her sanity examined for her sudden appreciation of Amarige. No, time does not heal all olfactory wounds!)

I said at the start that what we should be charging Amarige with are crimes against humanity. The world agrees with me. I present as witnesses, some posters from Basenotes.

[The court security guards wheel in the witnesses that they have ferried over from the Intensive Care Unit. From their gurneys, they feebly lift their heads to take the vow to ‘tell the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth,’ so help them God. And then they testify.]

  • Tuberose’s reputation has been damaged almost irrepairably by this most horrid affair. If I were her I would sue.
  • Truly, truly awful. Radiates out to the orbit of Neptune. Causes asthma, retching and a stampede for the exit. Frightens children and pets, ruins dinner-parties, restaurant meals and plane journeys. Could be used to eradicate vermin from silos and warehouses. [..] Please people, stop buying this hideous juice so Givenchy will stop making it. It’s an abomination, a crime against humanity. I can’t understand why any woman would want to smell like this, or why her significant other would want to smell it on her. A chemical disaster of Chernobyl proportions.
  • this Perfume is a migraine in a bottle. […] The absolute worst fragrance I’ve ever smelled.
  • I own a bottle of it due to my initial attraction to its smell in small quantities. Wearing it, I feel nauseous and completely unable to eat anything. I tried to scrub it off in the shower but it won’t die. I haven’t eaten anything all day. I think this toxic odor could be useful as a diet aid.
  • Horrible, HORRIBLE soapy smell broadcasting out to the planet at gigawatt levels. I made the mistake of spraying this onto my wrist and I thought I’d never be able to remove it. This smell made me feel nauseous and headachey.

The final witness comes from Fragrantica:

If I had to describe this perfume in one word it would be ‘haunting’ because it’s unpleasant and, like the eerie warnings written in blood on the walls, impossible to scrub off.

‘Blood on the walls.’ Blood on the walls, people! The eerie warnings come, in part, from tuberose, one of the most indolic flowers around. What is an idole, you ask? I draw your attention to Exhibit 3, the Glossary of perfume terms. It is something found naturally in many heady, white flowers — like tuberose. In excessive amounts, it can lead to a feel of extreme full-blown, over-ripeness. In cases of fragrances like Amarige, it can turn to an aroma of sourness, even cat litter feces, plastic flowers, urine,  garbage heaps of rotting fruit, or all of the above. At best, Amarige is a fetid, rotting stinker that will turn from over-blown flowers to pure sourness and cat urine. At worst, it will choke up your airways, prevent all breathing and render you utterly unconscious. All in just 2 small whiffs.

You don’t believe me, I can see it in your eyes. Well, we shall prove it to you. Guards! Bring in the testers!”

[The guards set up two, tiny canisters at each end of the room. The jury shifts in their chairs nervously. A cordon of security blocks the doors. The District Attorney dramatically puts on a giant gas mask, akin to those used by soldiers in the first Persian Gulf War when there were fears of Saddam Hussein using chemical warfare — or Amarige — against American troops. Mr. Sneering points to the guards and nods.

Pfft. Pfft. Pfft.  

Three small whiffs of scent are released from each of the two canisters. White flower after white flower suddenly fills the room. They flit here, they flit there. They are omnipresent. There is a smell of orange, orange blossom, more orange blossom, and still more. It spreads its powerful molecules around the room like a carpet unfurling a wave. Little spectres of happy yellow mimosa flowers dance along the orange carpet. There is a shadow of some silken amber rising up, peeking its eyes above the wave of orange. Peach makes an appearance, adding to the orange haze filling the room and cocooning the white ghosts of tuberose and gardenia. The powerful ghosts dance merrily up to the District Attorney and punch him in his gas-masked nose. He falls back, but rises with a glare.

There is an audible gasp. A woman in the far back of the visitor’s gallery clutches her throat and gasps for air. Juror #4 faints completely. Jurors #6 and #9 have a look of rapt enchantment and glazed joy on their faces, much to the disgust of the District Attorney who sneers at them. In her seat, Amarige smiles faintly. With an almost imperceptible flick of her dainty chin, she tells the ever-growing, large white ghosts of tuberose and gardenia to move near Juror #5 who told of her upcoming wedding in Voir Dire. They move and the Juror suddenly sits up straighter in her chair, dreams of her wedding day and of Amarige trailing behind her in a billowing cloud of white.

The Jury Foreman has been watching these proceedings with unease. When Juror # 2 keels over beside him, begging for medical help and saying she is dying, he starts to back away. Quietly, he inches towards the door and then flees outright, only to head straight into a wall of security. The gas-masked police officers grimly shake their heads. He looks at them pleading. “I can’t take it any more. Get me out of here,” he whispers. “It’s in my nose, it’s burning my skin. There is so much fruit all of a sudden. I’m surrounded by peaches and a whiff of plum. It’s cloying, synthetic and artificial. And it’s covering every inch of me, like fruited animals devouring my skin. I need a shower. Please, have mercy.” They sympathetically shake their heads again and drag him, kicking and screaming, back to his chair.

The Judge has had enough of these theatrics. He orders medical attention for the gasping or collapsed bodies, lying crumpled like rag dolls throughout the room. He orders all the windows opened and the room to be fumigated before the court will reconvene the next day. He contemplates also ordering psychiatric evaluations for those jurors who had beatific, hypnotized, enraptured smiles on their faces, but decides he cannot seem biased.

The next day, the court reconvenes and the District Attorney resumes his case.]

“Ladies and gentlemen, I apologise for subjecting you yesterday to the horrors of Amarige. But, I had to give you the chance to decide for yourself. The People’s case will conclude with our expert, Mr. Luca Turin, the most famous perfume critic in the world. Before you is Exhibit 4, an excerpt from his book with Tania Sanchez, Perfumes: the A-Z Guide. Note the categorization of Amarige as ‘Killer tuberose.’ Killer. Not extreme but ‘killer.’ The one-star review reads as follows:

We nearly gave it four stars: the soapy-green tobacco-tuberose accord Dominique Ropion designed for Amarige is unmissable, unmistakeable, and unforgettable. However, it is also truly loathsome, perceptible even at parts-per-billion levels, and at all times incompatible with others’ enjoyment of food, music, sex, and travel. If you are reading this because it is your darling fragrance, please wear it at home exclusively, and tape the windows shut.

Ladies and gentlemen, the People rest their case.”


[The Public Defender, Grace Hopeless-Causes, rises and speaks]: “Ladies and gentlemen of the jury, I am here for one reason and one reason only. To represent the shamed, silent, closeted minority of women who adore Amarige and feel she has been most unjustly accused of crimes against perfumery! She has been vilified for far too long and it’s time for the Amarige lovers to defend her!

The weight and power of Luca Turin’s reputation has added the final, unjust nail in Amarige’s coffin. It is not tuberose who should sue Amarige, but Amarige who should sue Luca Turin for defamatory libel!

Don’t believe the District Attorney. He has presented only one, very slanted, side to the story. Did you note how he had only one witness from Fragrantica? Why is that, do you think? I’ll tell you why: because that was the sole, truly harsh review of Amarige. He didn’t tell you of all the others which spoke of the joy, the happy, dancing aura of Amarige, the image of beautiful wedding days, or posts writing of “sumptuous” finishes, of “sophistication” and “class.” There is no mention of how it is addictive, of how you can’t stop sniffing your wrists, of how intensely feminine it can make you feel.

And there is not a word about how it can drive men wild.

No, the District Attorney has presented a very lopsided, distorted picture of Amarige. Even when he quotes Luca Turin, he leaves out the words of his co-author, Tania Sanchez, who wrote in that same book:

Amarige is a genius work of perfumery, utterly recognizable, memorable, technically polished and spectacularly loud.

The D.A. quickly brushed over how they wanted to give it four stars. FOUR. And there is not a peep out of him over the fact that the very book he quotes as expert opinion actually lists Amarige in their top 10 BEST list at the back! It is in their 10 Best Loud Perfumes list, next to the 5-star Fracas, 5-star Angel, and the 5-star Lolita Lempicka perfumes. Strange for a perfume that Mr. Sneering and Luca Turin would have you believe is a crime against perfume humanity, no?

amarige1998Yes, Amarige is loud and a diva. Yes, one big squirt can blow your head off. But no-one ever said you should bathe in it, for heaven’s sake! Plus, don’t let the opening blast fool you. Amarige has average sillage and longevity. After the first ten minutes, it can fade to a much tamer level. If you don’t believe me, read Fragrantica, Basenotes or MakeupAlley, and see similar comments for yourself.

To all those who have had asthmatic attacks as a result of encounters with Amarige, I apologise. She apologises. Truly. But the same thing could happen from Lolita Lempicka, Angel or a whole host of perfumes. Why have they not been brought up on charges? Why does Luca Turin adore and worship the brilliance of Angel — a scent which many have compared to toxic nerve gas — but not the admittedly “genius,” “technically polished” masterpiece of Amarige? And, in all cases, isn’t it the fault of the wearers who spray on too much? Blaming Amarige for medical injuries triggered by over-use is akin to blaming a car manufacturer for accidents that may arise from someone texting while driving.

Where we concede and confess fully is the charge that Amarige is a diva. Yes. Yes, she is.Maria Callas Amarige is Maria Callas, the legendary opera singer, taking center stage under the bright white lights, and showered with diamonds by billionaires like Aristotle Onassis who loved her more than he ever did Jackie O. Amarige is not meant to be a simpering, quiet wallflower, sitting in the corner, awaiting a man to ask her to dance. She will push her way to the center of the floor and dance by herself, mesmerizing a room — public opinion be damned!

As for the charge that she is a cloying monster with some potentially synthetic undertones, we plead the Fifth. Even if true, and we are not saying that it is, many other perfumes are too. And, yet, do you see them in this courtroom? Speaking only for myself, I do not find Amarige to be synthetic. I think she is exactly what Givenchy and Dominique Ropion meant for her to be. As Fragrantica explains:

The name of the perfume ‘Amarige‘ is an anagram of the French word ‘Mariage.’ That is why this fragrance is as intensive as a strong feeling, merry, juicy and unforgettable as a moment of happy mariage. It is so opulent and floral that it seems like its composition includes all the beautiful flowers that exist in the world.

The Amarige woman is graceful, playful and charming, a real French woman in love. She radiates joy and gives a happy smile.

Maria Callas Tosca

Maria Callas in “Tosca.”

Despite her opulence and diva status, Amarige can be a cheap date. You can find a 1 oz bottle on Kohl‘s for $50 or on Sephora for $49. A 1.6 oz bottle costs $67 on Sephora, and much less on eBay. Compare those prices to more reputable white floral or tuberose scents: Robert Piguet‘s Fracas starts at $95; while Frederic Malle‘s Carnal Flower starts at $230 at Barneys.

Whatever she is, I realise this is the most hopeless of all lost causes. Amarige’s reputation has been destroyed beyond all measure. I can sit here and talk to you about her lovely white femininity, her peach exuberance, that dry-down of spice and amber, and it will make no difference at all. There is simply no hope of restoring her good name.

But I make this plea to you, ladies and gentlement of the jury: do not let the perfume world’s easy, facile dismissal of Amarige influence you. They are not objective and they have followed Luca Turin like sheep. After all, they proudly admit their love for Fracas, another white flowers explosion that make people gasp for air.

Admittedly, Fracas is a much more elegant creature than the brazen hussy, Amarige. And, yes, hard as it is to believe, Fracas almost seems like almost a quiet, shy child in comparison. But are they really so different as to warrant Fracas’s triumphant twirl in the spotlight as a cult favorite and legend, while Amarige wilts in the wilds of guilty obscurity? Again, Fracas may be of slightly better quality and there is not a hint of anything synthetic about it. But it too is an over-blown indolic scent that can turn sour or lead to thoughts of rotting fruit. Amarige is more fruity than Fracas, true, but there is luscious peach, orange and amber in Hermès‘ sophisticated 24 Faubourg, after all.

Unlike 24 Faubourg’s sophisticated woman, however, Amarige is like a happy child, all yellow, orange and white dancing flowers, full of exuberance and femininity. It is not a scent for those who like discreet, quiet, unobtrusive fragrances. It’s not for those who can’t stand heady, narcotically powerful ones, either. And it is most definitely not for those who can’t bear white flowers.

But if you love Amarige, I beg of you: do not go quietly into that good night, hiding your face in shame and covering your scarlet letter, that “A” which marks you as an A-marige lover. Rise up and defend her name. Admit your folly and sins. Admit she is glorious. Don’t wear her only in the privacy of your own room with the windows duct-taped shut. And find her not guilty of crimes against perfumery!”

[The Public Defender sits down and the jury leaves for its deliberations. There is no word from them for three days. Then, finally, they return.]


Hung jury.

[Nine jurors wanted to convict.

Three held out, utterly in love, and on their way to buy a bottle for themselves.]

36 thoughts on ““The People v. Amarige” – Prosecution & Defense

  1. absolutely delightful to read …. kafka how do you manage to come up with such awesome post everytime ?
    i knowwww you love fragrance but i wonder how come you sound soooooo perfect everytime and make us believe that there is nothing better then trying and finding out new fragrances ….
    a bigggg cyber hug to you dear and now am eagerly waiting for my Amarige to reach me … 🙂 there was offer going on perfumania so i asked hubby to buy it 😀 i hope it is good place to buy ? in past i have only purchased from Sephora , Macy’s and some shop .

    you knowwww .. i wanted to tell you that my hubby went to some mall or what and he picked USHER for women for me …. i crieddddd so much … instead of that he could have bought Fracas … both were same in price . As he bought USHER from store he paid 65 and FRACAS was $ 69 online … i asked him to return but he said “rashmi , i picked it with so much love why do you want to return it ?” …. you can buy that later na , he concluded …. 🙁 🙁 🙁
    i told him am reading perfume blog and following it , why didnt you asked me ? but he was repeating you buy whatever you want this i bought for you hahhaha …..

    • Sweet Rashmi, I manage it because I truly think exploring new perfumes and trying things out is akin to “raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens.” 😉 To me, it’s up there with fantastic food (or guilty pleasure foods), puppies, kittens, kisses from a loved one and Christmas presents. It’s just an exploration in every bottle or tiny vial — you never know what you’re going to get, but it always takes you on a trip somewhere!

      Let’s talk about your husband. You have a keeper and a gem there, chérie!!! Forget the Usher; this is a man who buys you perfume of his own accord! My God, do you know how lucky you are?! A man who goes out of his way to pick something that he thinks is special is a man who loves one very much indeed. (Men are usually terrified of perfume shopping! I think they’d have an easier time buying a lipstick!) It was very sweet of your husband, even though this was your chance to get something from the U.S. that you’d wanted. But you can always have one of your American friends send it to you later, if you can’t find it on eBay or somewhere that will ship to India. Besides, you got Amarige and they are both white tuberose scents. You’d probably like Amarige even better, given your favorite perfumes that you mentioned to me a while back.

      Think of it this way, Rashmi. By not spending that money on Fracas, you can later spend it on something much, much more different and without any possible perfume overlap! 🙂 You have to let me know what you think of the Usher scent and, also, of any samples that you end up getting from Surrender to Chance. But most of all, I can’t wait for your husband to come back with your Amarige! 😉

      • kafkaaa ….. how beautifully you write every wordddd …. i can go on and on and on reading your post and comments …. i love spending time here as i know i will be learning at the end of day and get to know more about you 🙂 seriously …. god bless you sweetie for alwayssss being so kind and lovely to all of us 😀
        yeahhhh hubby are like that only .. till date my only 2 lipsticks have made mark in his memories – russian red and chilli 🙂
        apart from givenchy i will be getting my hands on NARS pure matte … am giggling with joy like a little child ahahha 😀
        his friends are going next month itself so i will be buying more perfume – fracas and some samples 😀 this time i spent money on my first burberry 🙂 ….

        • Aaaaah, NARS……. *grin* Your husband has good taste with the Russian Red. I bet he will add the NARS Vesuvio to his list of favorites too. I’m so happy you bought yourself some perfume, Rashmi, even apart from what you asked from your husband’s trip to the US. What a long way you’ve come in just a few weeks! *smooch*

          • alllll thanks to friends like you …. 🙂 i am blessed to have awesome set of friends who help me decide and pick good things 🙂 …. earlier it was just MAC MAC MAC for me but now even i want to pick very few stuff and pick wisely 🙂 MAC is always where my heart is but now am experimenting brands 🙂
            you knowww … i was able to pick GUERLAIN GEMS rouge G from direct office of GUERLAIN in INDIA 🙂 am so gladddd ….
            heyyy kafka , rem you said you will help me choose a fragrance for hubby ?
            he is happy go lucky and very fun loving … we met on yahoo chat 13 yrs back 🙂 ahhaha do tell me na something for him as well 🙂 …

  2. J’adore! Darling, I was THERE. Watching it all. Right from the names of the judge and the lawyers to the poor shaking witnesses, to the jurors collapsing. You made me giggle endlessly. I adore this post. LOVE. It was brilliantly written!

    Now, as to the perfume itself, I confess I have never tried either Fracas or Amarige. On first reading about the notes of the perfume, it is all the things I love. Flowers, orange blossom, hint of amber, and did you mention vanilla somewhere? I know I love flowery and fruity fragrances but I am wary of anything that is overtly so, if you know what I mean. I like balance, and Amarige doesn’t _SOUND_ balanced. It sounds over the top. I get headaches very quickly from intense scents (and people make the perfumes so much more intense by bathing in it, as you pointed out).

    I’m afraid the jury is out as far as I’m concerned personally; I would certainly accept a whiff on the wrist to sniff for myself, but I won’t be ordering a sampler any time soon. 😉

    • You know, oddly enough, Amarige is the scent that I would most associate with you. It is irrepressibly feminine, full of boundless energy and joy, bubbling with joie de vivre, and just plain happy! It is, in my opinion, much MORE balanced than the Angel version you wear and much less singular (cloying?) than your YSL Paris. It is sweeter than Fracas, which is why I think you’d like this one even better. The peach and fruit aspects make it sunnier. And it dissipates its forcefulness quite quickly.

      I did a test at today’s Saturday Family Lunch. I put on a good 2 sprays on one arm, gave it about 5 minutes, and then thrust my arm under my mother’s nose. I asked for her opinion and she said, “I like it.” I should note at this point that my mother SNEERS at Amarige and curls her lip with the utmost disdain at its very mention. And, yet, the two times I’ve done this, she’s always really liked the smell on me. (To me, that just shows the power and extent of Amarige’s truly rotten reputation. The name alone inspires shudders and disdain; no-one gives it a chance to actually smell the poor thing.)

      An hour later, I accosted my sister. My sister who is utterly allergic to perfume, I might add. I shoved that same arm under her nose and she liked its softness. She thought she smelled lily-of-the-valley, violets and “something light, floral.” I then sprayed on Amarige on my untouched arm and made her smell it. She positively recoiled! “Too, too much! It’s over the top! It smells artificial and excessive. It’s much nicer on the other arm.” Humph. She doesn’t wear perfumes, so I’m not surprised the bold opening was too much for her, though the fact she liked it at all (after the one hour mark) really *did* surprise me.

      I think you’d definitely like it but, as with all powerhouse scents like this, it’s best to test it out. But, again, remember, you loved one of the Angels. So this will probably be child’s play for you!

      • It _sounds_ like my cup of tea. It really is all the things that I love, so perhaps I’ll be giving Amarige a shot soon. I think I owe it to myself to at least order a sample vial and see if I Amarige and I go together like milk and honey. 😉

    • ROFL. “Ari” it shall be. But I shall disavow all connection to you if you ever adopt those horrendous black glasses of his. 😉 Have you tried Amarige since that one time when you said it almost blew off the back of your head and then you layered it with Mitsouko?

  3. Great post! Personally I like the big, bold scent monsters once in a while. Applied sparingly there’s nothing wrong with Amarige. A few squirts and you’re making a statement. I don’t mind that either. I so rarely smell perfumes on anyone that those times that I do I think it’s wonderful. If you can’t smell it without jamming your nose into your wrist then really, what’s the point? I want nothing to do with “skin scents”. If I want a faint wisp of scent then I’ll go for a lotion or body spray. If I’m wearing perfume I want to know I’m wearing perfume. Now, I’m not saying I want to leave a vapor trail or be suffocating to those around me but with all the heavy hitter scents it’s just a matter of figuring out how much is too much.

    • I think you’re right, Poodle. No-one wants to inflict suffering onto others, but it actually *is* possible to wear scents like this politely and with courtesy. I think one trick is to spray a miniscule amount on one’s bosom or under one’s bra. Another trick I’ve read is to dab a tiny amount at the back of one’s knees; the scent trails up in a softer, more demure, discreet way.

      All that aside, I share your disinterest in perfumes that you can’t smell unless you’re absolutely *jamming* your nose violently into your wrist. One might as well wear perfumed body lotion, in those cases. I do admit, however, that personal consideration for others makes me opt generally for putting on these “toxic” beauties when at home, when curling up to relax in cozy, comfy pajamas after a long day and a hot bath. I can douse myself, feel glorious, like a diva and regal, and not bother a single soul except for The Hairy German and my loved ones.

  4. This may be the best perfume review I have ever read. :). I can tell Amarige would kill me so I won’t even try it but I certainly enjoyed hearing both sides of the story.

    • Nancy, thank you! I’m glad I could make you laugh. As for Amarige, there is no doubt at all in my mind that she would kill you. Flat-out. Stone-cold. ROFL! No, this is absolutely not the perfume for you. 😀

  5. Oh, and I would love to see a series on in-between scents (meaning surely there has to be something in between Angel and skin scents? I’d like a *tiny* bit of sillage, but maybe that’s just my body).

    • I generally don’t approach perfumes from a sillage perspective, in that I don’t go in thinking “Okay, this is a sillage monster” or “This has minimal sillage.” But there are certainly scents I review that have light, discreet or minimal sillage. The upcoming new Chanel perfume, 1932, which I just reviewed a few days ago would fall into the discreet and sophisticated category. (Most Chanels, in fact, don’t radiate sillage.) I don’t know how you feel about aldehydes, though.

  6. Another beautifully written post!! So good!!! I always look forward to reading your blog, It’s always educational and entertaining at the same time. I don’t know how you do it but I’m glad you do.
    I really felt like I was in the courtroom, in the back row with a hat and shades on because at one point in my life I was an Amarige lover. Guilty. I wore Amarige every fall & winter from the age of 24-27….until a fellow co-worker decided to copy MY scent ( not cool) and then I never wore it again. A blessing in disguise, perhaps?? Jury is still out for me… you can’t help but agree with both sides of the argument! To me, Amarige is offensive and beautiful all at the same time!lol
    And yet, I still have a soft spot for it. What’s a girl to do!

    • Wear it! End the shame! *grin* So many closeted Amarige lovers, my word. It really says something about her reputation that so many of us whisper our love hesitantly. LOL.

      I’ve never had someone copy my scent other than my mother. And that infuriated me too, so I can imagine it must be a thousand times worse when a co-worker steals your scent.

      Speaking of mothers, did you give yours the TF Black Orchid? 😉

      • I will! I will wear it with pride from now on!!! 😉
        Yes! I gave it to her and she loves it and now wants it! She kindly reminded me of her upcoming birthday. Haha! Black Orchid is right up her alley, she is all about floral perfumes. You know whats funny, I actually like the way it smells on her?!!? How does that happen!lol

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    • I’m sorry, sweetie, I’m a bit confused. You think the perfume should have gotten a FiFi award, even though you hate it (as does Luca Turin)? Do you mean, Hall of Fame for most toxic scents? 😉

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  9. I finally got a chance to read this in depth. Brilliantly done, as per your usual. I agree that the reputation has so horribly damaged and influenced people’s opinions they can’t even really smell the perfume, much less formulate a reasonable opinion… wearing this, and asking many (a couple dozen now) people (those who know perfume and those who don’t), I get anything from neutral responses to absolute adoration and demands to know what it is. No one yet has truly disliked it…. but I should mention that I’ve never offered it for smelling in the first few minutes after application. I love the story about your mother!

    Personally, I like it at every stage, but I might be a bit of a brazen hussy myself 😉

    Nor do I think it smells cheap, in fact, when asking a few perfume loving friends what they thought of it, two of them were absolutely convinced it was some super expensive new niche scent… I guess they missed the 90’s, heh.

    • How fascinating to see how people react and love Amarige when they don’t know what it is! Thank you so much for sharing all that. See, it’s all a reputation and mental association thing. Poor Amarige, forever despised in people’s minds. I seriously blame Luca Turin for much of it.

      BTW, I miss both the ’90s and the ’80s. 😉 LOL.

      • Yes, it’s a problem when one’s personal preferences get turned into massive judgements that impact probably thousands of people… I constantly disagree with him, and I’m fine with that, but I wish he wasn’t regarded as the great authority. And, hm, I’m glad that, given his extreme prejudices, HE’S not an attorney.

        I was born in 1980, and so mostly remember Rainbow Brite and legwarmers from the 80’s but I certainly enjoyed a whole lot about the 90’s. Although actually, being a dancer, I like legwarmers 🙂

  10. Ohmy..this is bby far the best perfume review ive ever read..i got my amarige almost 10yrs ago along with my all time fav acqua di gio..amarige was a freebie.i hated it back then and thought whoever created this shud be shot dead.i put amarige in my perfume box n nvr bother to even look at it aftertht..over the years, my perfume choices grew bolder. few weeks back i took it out frm the box for a spring cleaning, took a sniff and i surprised myself for liking it.i thought i will never like amarige let alone describing it as sexy and sophisticated.but i guess this perfume is an acquired taste,took me almost 10yrs

    P/s Its true, u should not wear this perfume in a closed space especially in a plane or u might get stabbed.

    • Hi, Jacintha, welcome to the blog. I’m glad you enjoyed the review. Amarige is definitely an acquired taste!! LOL. She’s not the easiest fragrance, but I’m glad you’ve come around to seeing her beauty and sophistication. 🙂 And LOL at the part about not wearing it in a closed space lest you get stabbed! Ha! 😀

  11. Oh my, I found this review yesterday and died laughing. I wore Amarige to my class last night and people were fainting in the hallways. I love this frag, simply love it. Thanks for this what is now a “case study”. 🙂

    • I love it, too, and I’m glad I could give you a good laugh over its effect on other people. It’s certainly a polarizing fragrance, isn’t it? 🙂

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