The following review is from the OT archives, first published on November 2010. I’m happy to report that my relationship with Songes has drastically improved since then.
The moral of the story? Revisiting your old fragrant failures, is definitely worth it. What you thought of as your worst foes may end up being your best friends…
What is it with me and Annick? I adore the house, I like the romantic ideas behind the fragrances, I think the late Annick Goutal and her daughter Camille, who heads the brand since Annick’s untimely death in 1999, are highly likeable, I respect Isabelle Doyens work, I love the bottles, the entire visual presentation of the line, and still I am having a hard time finding a perfume that is an immediate winner for me.
This time I am struggling with Songes.
It was created by Isabelle Doyen and Camille Goutal in 2006. Official notes are: frangipani, tiare, jasmine, incense, vanilla, copahu balm, pepper, ylang-ylang absolute, vetiver, sandalwood, amber and styrax. Camille Goutal allegedly was inspired by the fragrant beauty of the frangipani flowers at sunset on the island of Mauritius. Songes means something like “to think about in dreams”.
It starts out with an incredibly strong burst of heady white flowers, the frangipani combined with jasmine and gardenia. That is where my reservations with the scent come in, I can take each of the three alone (well, maybe) but all three together – that is too much. And they are tenacious! In the first hour it has almost scrubber qualities for me, but when I am being brave and hang in there, for the sake of the blog, (and nobody is around for me to bother with sillage overload!!!) I am rewarded with a wonderfully soft and in contrast to the beginning, almost demure and feminine fragrance that entices and invites to dream, just as its name suggests. If I could have just the drydown, this perfume would be a winner for me. As it is, it strikes me almost as being a little schizophrenic or bipolar in its loud exuberance followed by demure, introspective and somber beauty.
The question is: Can I stand the first hour of unrelenting, overpowering heady white floweriness?
Do I have to? I don’t know.
What do you say? Do you wear fragrances that are not all good, all the time? Is your perfume allowed to have “bad” sides or do you wear only those that fit like a glove?
I am torn. Songes is not a shy creature, it has a big personality, does it match mine?
It does in the drydown, but our style upon entering a room is decidedly different. But maybe there is something I could learn there… (maybe not the bipolarity though )
Songes is available in 50 and 100ml Eau de Toilette and 50 ml Eau de Parfum in the regular feminine bottle as well as 100 ml Eau de Parfum the “moon bottle”, that has been available in various limited edition-incarnations over the years.