This begins like an aspartame aquatic, sweet and slightly powdery, which feels like it’s distantly derived from New West, and with a touch of the later version of that unfriendly aldehydic Blue Grass, the messed about one which isn’t quite right.
And then it breaks down into something as natural feeling as Blue Monday, and with a sour chemical note that throws the harmony off balance.
It’s a weird experiment and it doesn’t end well.
(Perhaps it works better on skin, but it doesn’t work on my shirt – that’s for sure.)
Imagine yourself with a crisp white shirt, you are standing at a cliff's edge, overlooking a rocky coastline.behind you an evergreen forest,bellow you are barnacle-covered rocks amidst churning sea waters.as you look towards the ocean,you can see lighting in the distance and roiling clouds from the recent thunderstorm that has just passed over.
Initially this is slightly salty but fresh because of the sea notes.then it settles down to a warm summery wood very gentle and slightly herbal. it's fresh but there is something aquatic to it that hits you. surprisingly clean,but it's fleeting character makes it difficult to memorize. it is a cold summer.it is not dank,but more than fresh and very humid.if you are a fan of crisp and simple scents you'll like this.
Eau des Merveilles Bleue (2017) is a bit of a capitulation to men, whom found most of the previous Eau des Merveilles (2004) line pretty wearable, in spite of its feminine market copy. Here we see house perfumer Christine Nagel do what Jean-Claude Ellena has done and mostly dispense with the original "upside down note pyramid" theme of pillar entry, and just vibe off of key elements from it. Namely, the ambergris heart and the fresh citric oceanic notes that defined the dry down of that scent, bolstered with additional "proper" aquatic elements to turn the Eau des Merveilles accord into a proper aquatic fragrance, albeit a unisex one that will probably appeal more to men (like I said in the opening). It's always funny when a market segment a house wasn't expecting emerges and they're forced to make a product to meet that surprise demand. What this means to a casual fan of the original Eau des Merveilles is a more oceanic and possibly masculine feeling to the scent, so if a Hermès aquatic with a Hermès price tag sounds like your bag of chips, start munching my friend.
The opening here is a blast of aldehydes and juniper, with those notes quickly folding into the ambergris note of the original's heart. Again as with classic Eau des Merveilles, I can't really say if this is actual ambergris despite the market copy, but it has a breathy mineralic warmth and underlying marine muskiness, so it's a good take if synthetic. Additional "sea notes" are found in the heart, which mostly translate in my head to something ozonic in nature, then a base of denatured patchouli and ambrocenide for that "woody amber" feel most modern things have from the 2010's. Christine Nagel seems to be a fan of just naming two or three notes in her pyramids, so most of what I mention is detected not stated by the house, so your mileage may vary. Wear time is eight hours with average performance all around, best for casual outdoor summer use like at a BBQ or if you work outdoors. This barely feels unisex but leans more masculine to me, and anyone liking the original but not the heavier flankers that followed may appreciate this more since its closest by far to the first Eau de Merveilles in tone.
The bottom line here is this is Eau des Merveilles Bleue, is how it sounds, although could probably be named "Bleu de Hermès" if you really wanted to be cynical, since it has the appropriate house transparency developed since the 2000's but also the blue freshness the dudebros crave. I like Eau des Merveilles Bleue but like with the original, it plays in a crowded field and has a price tag that makes it a hard sell when there are so many things you could have which smell just about in the same ballpark for a fraction, mostly thanks to discounters crammed to the gill with those competitors. Hermès collectors who love these tilted sparkly bottles will jump all over this, and anyone looking for an aquatic that is "a cut above" in most respects to your average Bvlgari or Nautica scent will appreciate what Nagel has dished up here in Eau des Merveilles Bleue, although anyone with more niche-aligned tastes or an aversion to obvious synthetics use will poo-poo even more than the standard Eau des Merveilles. Nice, simple, fresh, but a bit overpriced for what it is. Thumbs up.
I was hesitant about this one at first - if you don't pay attention to the details, it's easy to dismiss as something generic. The bitter, dry citrus blends with the salty marine notes in such a way that makes it smell like an inedible, minty fruit.
Very easy to wear, and ultimately more interesting than the original, which I find to be a bit meh.
If you have aversions to the words "fresh" or "aquatic", probably not for you.