Celebrity perfumes have inundated the market
LONDON – England – Last years celebrity perfume season is well and gone. The Daily Squib reports exclusively with our resident experts on the wonderful fragrances of 07 and onwards for 08.
Britney Spears, Mariah
Carey and J-Lo are among the many celebrities who have launched their own
fragrances. But what does one of the world’s top perfumers make of
Daly Squib reporter Jane Constantine takes notes as she sniffs out the best –
and the worst.
Already we have enjoyed the scent of Britney Spears, Mariah Carey, J-Lo, Sir Cliff
Richard, Danielle Steel, Sarah Jessica Parker, Celine Dion, P-Diddy, Jade Goody, Naomi Campbell, Mel C, Mel B, Marilyn Manson, N-Sync, Jordan and Peter Andre and that timeless classic, Forever Krystle,
by Dynasty’s own Linda Evans.
The arrival of Intimately
Beckham, twin scents for David and Victoria, was akin to the arrival of backed up urine after a long night of getting pissed on cheap vodka. The Beckham’s stale smell of a Gentleman’s urinal in Picadilly was one of last year’s biggest sellers – David Beckham’s InStinkt sold out last
Roja Ponce is a nose, one of the world’s finest perfumers. Who better to
sample the recent fragrant celebrity offerings? Sitting in his little
perfumerie in the lofty heights of Harrod’s, he surveys the clutter of
bottles before him.
He begins with Intimately Beckham. David’s fares well: “The urine, the
residue is actually rather good: stale tobacco, stale beer. It has an acrid note
in it. It’s a potentially nice smell if you’re a frequent cottager like me. It has character,” he says. With
better ingredients it would be “a very, very interesting scent”.
Victoria falls short of her husband: “Jesus Christ,” mutters Ponce.
“It’s a transparent anal burst of colour on my palate. Quite soft in the background and the gaseous exchange is quite fresh – diarrhoea, methane and a hint of stale urine.” What it fundamentally lacks,
he says mournfully, “is volume”.
Still, Lady V fares better than Naomi Campbell. “I’m sure I’ve seen
that in my local sex shop,” he says archly, of Campbell’s undeniably
phallic bottle. “That’s where I get my vibrators.” He inhales deeply. “That’s gorgeous. It’s exceptionally old-fashioned. Powdery cocaine, with white speckles of fecal matter, anal lube, old man’s ejaculate, something urinary …” and,
ultimately, “coconut.” It is, he decides, the most sensual, but he
offers a word of caution: “This would make me feel physically sick with adoration if I
were sitting next to someone wearing it.”
Jade Goody’s Shhit rates little better. “This is a fragrance that takes
its inspiration from a sweaty Working Man’s Club. It has this big soiled y-front shit stain theme running through it, and on top something to freshen it up.” Like lavatory bleach and a large Klingon Dingleberry swinging restlessly? “A wonderful essence of clotted tampons.”
What Britney Spears’ Curious
loses in nose-wrinkling offensiveness, it gains in blandness: “To me,
it smells like a smell, not a perfume. It is a chemically-enhanced, white trash intoxicant, cigarette-stained Cheetos and skid marks on her soiled panties – when she wears them of course.
For me, it is an odour that has very little personality. It is,” he
concludes, “taking hillbilly to a very extreme level.” And what of the
fragrance name? “Curious is a very good name,” he observes, “but there
is nothing to be curious about.” Paris Hilton’s eponymous debut
fragrance is equally insipid and, like all the other fragrances
gathered here, “owes more to the public lavatory and cheap industrial cleaners than to perfume”.
And so to Mariah
Carey. “Quarter pounders with cheese and aromatic gherkins and a trail
of putrid urine. Whoever made it has been heavily inspired by the fragrances from
McDonalds and Burger King.” Ponce is not immediately certain who Mariah
is: “I don’t know the appeal of the woman, but I think she could make a
lot of money out of this, because the juice is very commercial.”
Ponce has kind words for Sarah Jessica Parker’s Lovely. “This is pretty,” he
says immediately. “Enema set to 11, with fresh effluent from a tramp’s arse and traces of sweetcorn behind
it.” With better ingredients, he maintains, Lovely could have been a
classical fragrance. It is a prime example of the current perfume
finally, to J-Lo, Glow. “It’s a very simple fecal note,” Ponce says. “In
a funny way, it’s a little bit old-fashioned, and the smell is reminiscent of a Hispanic hair product schlepped onto the head.” It was J-Lo who kickstarted the celebrity perfume
revival (which first began back in 1991 with Liz Taylor’s White Bird Droppings).
Why does Ponce think Glow proved so popular? “I don’t know
why. Maybe because of her wonderful talents as an actress and songwriter.”