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quinta-feira, 18 de fevereiro de 2016

Lalique's Rêve d'Infini Is Not as Simple as It Seems

by: Miguel Matos

Each new edition from the house of Lalique is a reason to rejoice for any fragrance lover. When the brand launches something on the market it means that the world just got prettier and it probably smells amazing. So when I saw that there was a new perfume called Rêve d'Infini, I couldn't resist emailing the brand asking for a sample and more info. Only after that I took a closer look at the notes in the Fragrantica announcement and saw that they were not really my thing. But I waited until I received the sample. It could be a surprise, or not.
Being a declared hater of freesia, I was afraid of trying this fragrance. This flower must be very well disguised in order not to affect and ruin a perfume for me. And as soon as I sprayed Rêve d'Infini, my fears were confirmed. Freesia (and I guess peony also) is not shy in this composition signed by Richard Ibanez. The first minutes are a fresh and innocent symphony of this rosy and dewy flower with maybe a touch of aldehyde. The prominent bergamot makes it a bit bitter and fruity in a perfect blend, but just too girly, fresh and perfect. Don't get me wrong, it is really not bad but very common and too romantic for me. Freesia and jasmine makes me think of the Anaïs Anaïs commercial back in the 1980's, that I find so off putting.
The opening is a crowd pleaser for all the lovers of contemporary fruity-floral-fresh fragrances. The lychee contributes with a pleasant touch but in general the combo brings nothing new. But wait. After 10 minutes a parade of different moments start to develop as the true complexity of this Lalique starts to show. The girly opening started to darken a bit. Powdery shades began to appear, strange elements were lurking behind and even though it was not possible to discern them, I sensed that the best was yet to come. Hmmm, I had a feeling that the show had not started yet. Bear with me, dear reader, for it takes a while until the curtains are fully open to this spectacular variety show. For now I will tell you about the flacon, while the top notes vanish from my skin.

“The new Lalique fragrance, Rêve d'Infini, draws its inspiration from the designs of René Lalique and the infinity symbol in the shape of an 'eight' already referenced by the Art Nouveau scrolls of the artist's jewels. In 1947, his son Marc Lalique turned it into the elegant 'Séville' motif for a crystal chandelier.

In 2012, the motif expresses the house's return to its roots: fashioned in gold and diamonds in the 'Ardente' collection, it marks the rebirth of Lalique's Fine Jewelry Department. Today, with Rêve d'Infini, this symbol of the eternal feminine is translated into scent.” - Lalique Press Release

The infinity symbol is engraved in the gold ring placed around the neck of the bottle, and, of course, it is referenced by the name of the fragrance, which means “Dream of Infinity”. This flacon is the same as the one created for the beautiful Living Lalique, in an hexagonal shape but in Rêve d'Infini the edges are clear instead of rimmed as in the previous bottle. The glass has a frosted white gradient which works very well with the rosy shade of pink from the juice inside. The cap has a piece of rose mesh fabric inside.
All in all, the bottle is stunning, and a good variation of Living Lalique. I would keep it even if I didn't like the perfume. Which brings us back  to the subject of its intriguing development...
After a while, the scent becomes much more sensual, abandoning the apparently simple and common opening. There comes a powdery and buttery Iris, the same accord we found in Living Lalique, which has a real body, a natural feeling and a luxurious presence. Here the girly start becomes an all-woman scent. Even though freesia is listed as heart note and rose as a top note, my nose feels this in the opposite way. The heart of the fragrance surprised me when I wasn't expecting much of it. So what I smell after 15 minutes is rose, orris and jasmine with a touch of peach and woods. It is still very refreshing but full-bodied and luxurious. The notes all come in an effervescent way, alive and dynamic. Still very feminine and not groundbreaking but very high-quality stuff. When the familiar rose, peach and cedarwood accords are settled and we start to see this as a true Lalique fragrance, there comes an unexpected twist: a salty musk. Something marine or iodic and a mineral aspect.
The drydown of Rêve d'Infini is composed by a remanent trace of powdery notes and a mix of musks and salty air. What I smell is white musk and a certain marine note, which turns a bit masculine on me. Lalique fragrances tend to display this kind of gendered tension between the feminine and masculine, and here it goes from girly to womanly to a bit of masculinity in the base, which makes it much more interesting. There is a wink to the erotic and sensual side in the last hours of its life on the skin. This surprising perfume has a complex development and it may differ from skin to skin. The sillage is discreet but present and it is decently lasting. I bet this blooms best in springtime or even summer. It's not a winter fragrance at all. It may not be my cup of tea, but I am still intrigued by it and will wear it more times just to repeat the aesthetic intellectual pleasure.
Top notes
bergamot, litchi, white roses
Heart notes
 jasmine, rose, fruity notes, freesia, peach and cedar
Base notes
 vanilla, musk and sandalwood
The distribution of Rêve d'Infini is limited to the Russian market for now and it will be distributed shortly in France, USA, Switzerland and Germany.

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