This is my first review on fragrances, which is honestly long overdue. Although I sometimes am very lazy about using them as a final touch, I do love trying and smelling all these fragrances because they can smell so different with just a few different ingredients.
Black Opium by Yves Saint Laurent is a glamorous yet edgy fragrance bursting with mystery and energy. The bouquet is an addictive gourmand floral with notes of adrenaline-pumping black coffee, seductive white florals and sweet vanilla.
Official Retail Price in Singapore: SGD 139 for 50ML (Shilla Duty-Free @ Changi Airport)
Family: Warm & Sweet Gourmand
Style: Glamorous, Rock Spirit, Addiction
Top Notes: Green Tangerine, Pear
Middle Notes: Jasmine Tea Petal, Orange Flower Petal
Base Notes: Green Coffee, White Woody
I won’t claim to be an expert on the ingredients in fragrances, but as you can see, this EDP is a delightful mix of natural ingredients. If you’re curious as to what the different terms mean:
The Top Notes
Also sometimes referred to as the opening notes or head notes, the top notes of a fragrance are generally the lightest of all the notes. They are recognized immediately upon application of the perfume. The top notes are also the first to fade given their light molecular structure, but this does not mean they aren’t of utmost importance.
The top notes of a fragrance represent the first impression. How many times have you tested a fragrance only to be turned off right away? Why? Because the top notes didn’t make a lasting impression on you. It is hugely important that the top notes not only succeed at luring you in, but also smoothly transition into the heart of the fragrance.
The Middle Notes
The middle notes, or the heart notes, make an appearance once the top notes evaporate. The middle notes are considered the heart of the fragrance. They last longer than the top notes and have a strong influence on the base notes to come. A perfume’s heart is generally pleasant and well-rounded. It is ofen a smooth combination of floral or fruit tones; sometimes infused with spices like cinnamon, nutmeg or cardamom.
The Base Notes
The base notes are the final fragrance notes that appear once the top notes are completely evaporated. The base notes mingle with the heart notes to create the full body of the fragrance, but are typically associated with the dry-down period. The job of the base notes is to provide the lasting impression. These often rich notes linger on the skin for hours after the top notes have dissipated.
The middle notes are akin to the highlight of the fragrance, so it’s little wonder that they are the main bulk of what you smell upon application of this EDP. Jasmine Tea Petal and Orange Flower Petal smell wonderfully fresh, but it may be slightly overpowering at times. I couldn’t quite smell the top notes of green tangerine and pear, but it’s probably just me.
The base notes are also very strong, and they surface after a while when the top and middle notes have evaporated. I really like the woody, musky smell – it brings a sense of rootedness (haha, pun) that sticks with you after the initial ‘flirty’ notes are gone.
While I love this fragrance, I wouldn’t say this is for everyday use. Reserve this for events when you want to get heads turning, and surely all the noses will be turned to you as well.