As I explained in my first review of an Amouage perfume – Epic Woman – I tried to stay away from the line, as to not fall down an uncontrollable rabbit hole.
Well, I did try other Amouage’s and I am almost glad not all of them were winners for me. A good thing, since it is no fun craving too many expensive things. My turn with Reflection ended in mutual respect, but not love, and I sampled Ubar, Memoir, Dia, Jubilation 25 and Gold and none were really made for me.
Rose perfumes are very much hit and miss with me. I am fickle when it comes to roses and whether I like or even tolerate a rose perfume is highly dependent on my mood.
There are roses that always work (probably because they are not really roses), most notably Hermessence Rose Ikebana, a perennial summer favorite. This is on one end of the rose spectrum, light, airy, pink and carefree. The other end is best represented by Malle’s Portrait of a Lady. Heavy oriental, strong, long-lasting and powerful in every sense of the word. This also works for me, but the mood and the weather and the company and the day’s plans, everything has to fit and work together or I will feel off and get a headache for sure.
Again, then came Lyric.
Amouage is not known for its restraint. If you are on the lookout for clean and simple, move on. Maximalists are happy with Amouage’s more is more principle.
I can appreciate this approach, but to tell the truth in my heart of hearts I am a minimalist. Jena-Claude Ellena is still my hero.
I’ll say it once more – then came Lyric.
Lyric Woman is an oriental rose perfume. Created in 2008 by Daniel Maurel, its notes include bergamot, spicy cardamom, cinnamon, and ginger, rose, angelica, jasmine, ylang ylang, geranium, orris, oakmoss, musk, wood, patchouli, vetiver, sandalwood, vanilla, tonka bean, and frankincense.
I love everything about it. The fresh, spicy top, the dark rose heart and the incredible dry down that reels me in the most. It is a floral-oriental fragrance with the emphasis on oriental, the rose is there but it is not center stage, it works more like a unifying element that ties the spices, the woods, the incense and vanilla together to form one smooth package of dramatic, yet restrained beauty.
In the drydown Lyric is no longer a rose fragrance, the soft and warm spice-laden wood and incense base holds forth and smells stunningly gorgeous to me.
Performance wise, Lyric Woman lasts for the day and has good sillage, but is not too diffusive, it forms an intimate aura around me that makes me feel very feminine and beautiful. Its beauty rubs off on me and how I feel about myself. What more can you ask of a perfume?
But there is more. It is not just beautiful, it is also warm and – for lack of a better word – loving. I feel loved and cherished and embraced by Lyric.
It is one of those scents that take you on a journey, that you can smell and marvel at what is going on, at what unfolds before you, at the depth and complexity and the sheer beauty. That last part alone is enough, if I am honest. It is beautiful.
Real beauty is not easy to come by. They say it is in the eye (or nose) of the beholder and that is undoubtedly true. But then there is the kind of beauty that trancends this notion. There are things so clearly beautiful, we can all agree on it. These things are rare and far between. A piece of music maybe, a great painting and the rare perfume.
I think Lyric Woman may fall in this category.