Serge Lutens Bas de Soie, 2010

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(image Alejandro Chaskielberg)

Perfumer Christopher Sheldrake

The strategy of seeding the recognizable with just enough menace to haunt without causing panic is a classic approach in perfumery. The indole enhances the cleanliness of the white floral. A bit of civet cuts amber’s sweetness and gives it some shadow. In Bas de Soie, the iris doesn’t start with much of a carrot seed note, but it winds up there and takes on a bit of that gorgeous papery iris scent in Chanel 19 (edt especially.) The hyacinth starts pretty, grows more muscular, and then actually gives a hint of the metallic seaport of Secretions Magnifique.

I don’t find BdS the simple, linear functional scent that others appear to deride. It is coherent, and although not as outré as some of the SL icons, it doesn’t hide its seamy side.

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