Areej Le Doré Cuir de Russie

Cuir de Russie, the upcoming S6 release from Areej Le Doré puts me in a tricky spot as a reviewer. On the one hand, it is one of my favourites out of the new S6 collection when worn on skin, evoking at different stages Roja Dove‘s Fetish Pour Homme, Jacques Guerlain‘s aesthetic in old vintage classics, and even Serge LutensCuir Mauresque for a brief moment.

On the other hand, Cuir de Russie should NOT actually be worn on skin, due to its core ingredient of crude birch tar which is deemed inadvisable and unhealthy when in contact with the skin. In fact, the use of crude birch tar is flat-out prohibited in any fragrance that is intended for the skin. (Only rectified birch tar can be used, and in highly regulated levels at that.) Consequently, Russian Adam calls Cuir de Russie a “garment fragrance” and explicitly advises that it should only be applied to fabric. I did not follow the advisory and wore the fragrance both ways. I doubt I will be the only one to do so.

Which brings me to my dilemma: How do I write about a fragrance that is a singular monolith when worn in the way that is advisable and when that description would entail three short paragraphs but when the inadvisable, health-dangerous way would yield thousands of words of enthusiasm?

Photo: NASA, the Horsehead Nebula.

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Areej Le Doré Musk Lave

It’s taken me three tests to wrap my head around Musk Lave from Areej Le Doré’s new S6 collection and I’m still not entirely certain what I think. The only things that I’m certain of is that Musk Lave has a number of paradoxical aspects and that I’m completely the wrong audience for this type of fragrance. Areej Le Dore ALD S6

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Areej Le Doré Koh-i-Noor

The Koh-i-Noor, “mountain of light” in Persian, is one of the largest and most famous diamonds in the world, part of the British Crown Jewels, and a glittering focus of the opulent Queen Mary’s Crown. It is also the name of Areej Le Doré‘s latest parfum, a floral oriental with a heart of lush, indolic flowers, radiating white, yellow, and gold, against a velvety backdrop of golden amber, Mysore sandalwood, citrus, deer musk, and oud.

Left: the Koh-i-Noor in the front cross of Queen Mary’s Crown. Source: Wikipedia. Right: Koh-i-Noor parfum. Source: Areej Le Doré. Collage: my own.

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Areej Le Doré Malik Al Taif

Inspired by the Arabian Nights, Malik Al Taif weaves tales of thousand and one opulent, majestic Taif roses — some fruity, some lemony, some honeyed, some spicy, and some laden with sticky Middle Eastern pastries and loukhoum — but all so narcotic, rich, deep, complex, and heady that they create a sensory onslaught of pure delight. It is only the start of the tale. Accompanied by beautiful, authentic, luxurious and buttery Mysore sandalwood, purring oud, saffron, and resinous amber, the Taif roses are woven into a magic flying carpet which transports you deep into the heart of ancient Saudi Arabia. There are other fragrances which have taken this same journey, but few of them are as well executed, authentic, luxurious, and smooth.

Source: Pinterest. Original image via “American Beauty.”

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