I finally tried Sauvage and…

I used the word “tried” because I didn’t spray it on myself.  A neighbor obtained a paper sample for me and sprayed some on her wrist.  I talked to her for a while (in a room that was perhaps 12 by 18), and she walked in and out a few times while I stayed in the same place, so I was able to get a sense of what it’s like when a person walks by wearing this scent.  She said it smelled “fresh” when she first sprayed it on, and she liked it, but that only lasted ten minutes or so, and then she really disliked it (she’s not “young,” if that matters to the “panty dropper” crowd).

I was struck by how it seemed to be so focused on a non-“fresh” marine quality, the major problems with it (for me) being the “synthetic” quality of it, as well as the lack of depth/complexity (the two problems possibly being related).  I liked the smell itself, but I think it would work better as a room spray, perhaps in some sort of “Florida room.”  I placed the card upon which Sauvage was sprayed in a bathroom and closed the door.  It lasted with strength that way for well over 24 hours.  I didn’t get any development from it, thought I did get the sense that it was musky (and it may be that the muskiness really bothered me).

At first I thought there was a hint of a fougere accord but over time I was thinking it seemed like there might be a touch of sweet fruitiness.  Nevertheless, the powerful marine accord never let up, and it almost felt like it was meant to repel people rather than attract them. I’m surprised that so many of the younger crowd says this is a great “compliment getter” with young women.  I let a few others smell the card and they all found it repellent as well, though none were below the age of 40.  Presumably, Dior did quite a bit of product testing/research, and knew it would sell well (with the ad campaign they had planned for it).

What I found most interesting is that such a scent hadn’t already been marketed by a niche company, but the odd thing is that ambroxan is supposed to be front and center here, yet Escentric 02 Escentric, which is also said to have ambroxan as the “star” is not described in a way that is consistent to me with Sauvage.  Some say E02E smells like iris, carrot, tobacco, etc., but none that I saw mentioned a marine element.  I can’t think of another scent I’ve tried that possesses the marine element that Sauvage does, the closest being Horizon by Guy Larouche, though that one is quite complex, or at least busy, compared to Sauvage.

I wasn’t surprised by Bleu de Chanel, in terms of its popularity (though it didn’t seem like it possessed “Chanel quality” to me), but Sauvage really is puzzling.  Early on, some did say it smelled “synthetic” or that it sickened them, so that makes sense to me.  And I don’t see how this composition is related to Eau Sauvage.  But it does suggest the smell of Johnny Depp in one of his “Pirates of the Carribean” movies.  In fact, if Disney used this scent in their Pirates of the Caribbean ride, that would make perfect sense to me!  And considering how “synthetic” so many of today’s designers seem to me (especially the “big name” ones), I imagine that those who buy such scents would not find Sauvage to be particularly offensive in this context.

Now to me a good question is, is this a “groundbreaking” scent?  Of course only time will tell, but it just seems so simple to have the kind of “legs” scents like Cool Water or Acqua di Gio had.  And I’d much rather wear Horizon, so I wonder if many others will come to that conclusion (probably not).  It does have a kind of smoothness that Horizon doesn’t, and the youngsters probably never smelled Horizon or think it smells “old man” for some reason.  By contrast, to me Sauvage smells like “typical department store scent” combined with the niche “single molecule” idea.  Who would have thought that proverbial circle could have been squared?

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