Ligne St. Barth is a house I am just getting to know. I chose 3 of my favorite perfumes from the house to review, I really love these!
FLEUR DE CANNE A SUCRE - This is a tropical perfume in a way that few Americans are familiar with. The name translates to "cane sugar flower". Instead of a perfume full of synthetic tropical fruit and heady white flowers, here we have a perfume that smells like sugar cane (flower). I think it's ingenious.
While traveling in the Philippines, I got to enjoy drinking fresh sugar cane juice. It tastes like water with sugar in it, but it is hard to describe how truly fresh the juice tastes. Sure, you can simply mix water with sugar. but sugar cane juice doesn't quite taste like that. It also *feels* different. It somehow tastes cleaner and lighter, and the feeling of the sweetness is refreshing rather than nauseating.
The notes suggest pineapple, and I do smell it mixed-in with the sugar cane. It smells like a slice of fresh, ripe, juicy and sweet pineapple that has been roasted on a grill to the point where the edges have begun to turn brown due to the caramelization of its natural sugars. I love the taste of roasted pineapple, but I am astounded to smell it in a perfume. The scent of pineapple is extremely delicate to the point where I am not certain I would pinpoint it without having read the notes ahead of time. Some perfumes that contain pineapple smell syrupy sweet. Not this one.
Bravo for this simple and unique tropical fragrance. Fleur de Canne a Sucre captures the spirit of sugar cane very well. It is a light, clean, and sweet fragrance that is nice for warm weather, but it could easily work year-round.
I personally don't care much for light, fresh perfumes. For example, if a perfume's name begins with the word "Eau", I tend to run in the polar opposite direction. But this a tropical twist for when you want something easy, light and refreshing to spritz.
PATCHOULI ARAWAK - I'm sure that like me, you also go through phases where you often feel the desire to wear a particular note. Patchouli is a weird one for me. I despise the hippy stuff, personally. But every now and then, I like one of the good niche patches that make me see this plant as less of the "dreaded patch" and more as the pretty little herb from the mint family that it actually is.
Patchouli Arawak is a really nice patch. When I first sprayed it, I immediately noticed amber and patch as the dominant notes. I also noticed something else that was not easy to pinpoint. Let me start by saying that I am one of those people who loves that mildewy, damp type of patchouli. Montale's Patchouli Leaves has always been my Holy Grail for that type of patch. Patchouli Arawak reminds me of it. It smells dark, damp and a little mossy. It has a smooth chocolatey feel. A picture developed in my mind that caught me off guard. I saw an old, wooden ship that had sunk in the Caribbean. The kind of wooden ship you would imagine seeing in the Pirates of the Caribbean movies. The wood broke apart, weathered in the salty turquoise water, and then washed up on an island of white sand that no human had ever set foot on. That is the note I smell that makes Patchouli Arawak irresistible to me--decayed wood. It's faint, but it's just enough to make my eyebrows raise a little.
Patchouli Arawak is a light patch fragrance. While so many niche patches are ultra rich sillage monsters, this one feels discreet, melding with my skin chemistry to become less of a perfume and more like the scent of a perfume that is lingering on a chiffon scarf.
How DID they do it?! They managed to make a patchouli perfume with a distinct island feel. Very well crafted, very beautiful, very addictive. I don't buy patch perfumes often, but next time I am in the market to buy one, I am pretty sure Patchouli Arawak will be The One.
VANILLE WEST INDIES - Mmmm I absolutely love this vanilla. It smells like homemade vanilla bean marshmallows. It distinctly smells like raw vanilla beans. I have a bag of fresh vanilla (not the pods, but the tiny black seeds that have been scraped out of their pods), and Vanille West Indies smells so much like them. In their raw state, vanilla beans smell oddly rubbery and perhaps a tad smoky. Here some sweetness has definitely been added, and voila!
I wore it in both hot weather and in moderate weather, and I never found it to be cloying. Instead the beautiful scent of vanilla bean marshmallows softly make their way to my nose throughout the day, for about 8 hours before I felt like I might need a touch-up. Delicious yet, surprisingly, rather elegant.
WHERE TO FIND - The entire Ligne St. Barth perfume collection, as well as their other beauty products (shower gels, facial care, etc), are available at BeautyHabit.com.