The New Testament tells the story of Salome’s beguiling “dance of the seven veils” leading to the death of John the Baptist. As a result, she became a symbol of dangerous female seductiveness.
What a fantastic figure to inspire Papillon’s new fragrance.
Salome feels like the archetypal embodiment of all those women through the ages who didn’t shy away from their powerful sexuality, but positively reveled in it.
British perfumer Liz Moores released her first collection of fragrances last year to great acclaim. Anubis, Tobacco Rose and Angelique were all beautifully conceived and skillfully executed, so I was full of eager anticipation when this latest addition was announced.
Salome includes notes of carnation, jasmine, Turkish rose, Africa Stone, oakmoss, patchouli, bitter orange, styrax, bergamot and orange blossom.
Now, this fragrant dominatrix doesn’t mess around. She confronts you straight away with her strident sexual advances, packing a punch direct to the nether regions. No wooing you patiently with a non-threatening beginning and then stealthily revealing a dark underbelly. Salome is all undulating curves and blatant come-hither looks, right from the start.
With foreplay forgone, we are plunged straight into the midst of the act itself. Resinous, musky and somewhat spicy, there are two or more writhing bodies radiating heat in the darkness, veiled only in a sheen of glistening sweat.
It’s reminiscent of a decadently debauched scene from Ancient Rome.
What gives Salome its potency is the presence of hyraceum, also known as Africa Stone. This is the petrified excrement of the rodent-like hyrax, which has aged and turned stone-like over hundreds of years. It’s an intoxicating, animalic aroma which is used as an ethical substitute for civet and deer musk.
It makes Salome a must-try for fans of skank everywhere as well as those looking to move over to the dark side. It’s enough to make even the most jaded perfume lover gasp.
I inhale and my heart beats a little faster.
However, her intention is not to shock and awe but to captivate and seduce. This is not a superficial filth-fest; there’s much more thought gone into the composition than that.
Salome maintains the collection’s admirably high level of refinement and craftsmanship. She stays poised within a classical chypre structure and retains her femininity through a floral touch.
With a deep need to connect, the fragrance adheres to your skin and doesn’t let go for hours on end.
How do you get on with animalic fragrances? Do you think you could handle Salome?