I have had this tiny sample of Onda in extrait form, for at least six months. I looked at it everytime I opened my sample box, which is quite often as you can imagine, but whenever I wanted to try it, I thought: not today.
I thought this is the one out of the three Vero Profumo scents that interests me the least (it is the only sample I have, the wonderful Ines sent it to me) and besides, there was always something else screaming louder and getting my attention first.
Then one morning I felt extremely frazzled, my nerves lay blank, my stress levels were soaring, and an early morning spritz of Chanel N°19, my tried and tested “nerves of steel” perfume of choice, had already evaporated, when Onda, tiny, unassuming and banned to the outer reaches on the sample box, suddenly beckoned me. I knew it was a vetiver perfume, but not much else. Before I thought more about it, I applied a drop to the back of my hand, my prime sniffing spot.
The rest as they say, is history…
Onda is one of three perfumes by Swiss aromatologist turned perfumer at 60, Vero Kern. Onda was launched in 2007 together with her sisters Rubj and Kiki, a white floral and a lavender scent respectively.
Those three extraits along with matching Eaux de Parfums are Vero Kern’s only offerings to date. A fact I admire immensely. I think it is excellent, in these days of overexposure and oversaturation of the market, to stick with a small range of incredible perfumes, and let those sink in, let those get indispensable, instead of taking away attention from them by launching more and newer fragrances all the time.
Bergamot, lemon, tangerine, ginger, coriander, basil, iris, ylang-ylang, honey, vetiver, sandalwood, patchouli, musk and ambergris are on the notes-list First in Fragrance provides, Luckyscent keeps it simple with vetiver, ginger, mace and coriander.
Onda is a surprise. Usually I’m not shy with words, I usually know how to articulate my perfumed shenanigans, this blog is testament to my verbose side after all.
But Onda took her time. Onda refused to be put in words quickly. Onda wouldn’t let go of her secret for a long time. Onda ignored my attempts to get an angle on her, just as I had ignored her presence in my sample box. Onda made me wear her over and over again, until my small sample was entirely gone.
Then Onda was missed, sorely missed. And through missing her, I knew what she has been for me. Sometimes we have to let go of something, to know how and why we love it.
Onda is powerful. Onda is different. Onda speaks to a side of me that does not talk much, that is not used to expressing itself, that goes about its business in my head quietly and unappreciatedly.
Onda smells rough, free, heath-en – like the windswept meadow and the non-believer. Onda smells of earth and grass and hay, incredibly warm and alive. There is warm skin rolling around in the hay. There is a human body underneath the earth and dirt.
Onda is not what the people looking for fresh and clean will go for, Onda is old-fashioned, but timeless. It is a presence, it is a statement, it is a smellable extension of myself.
Onda is like an amour, making me invincible, but it is not hard, it is pliable and soft, like the leather I smell in the drydown. It is tough, rough, uncouth and warm, soft and adaptable to me like a second skin.
Green, spicy, dark, leathery, musky, salty, complex.