Unique, avant-garde and eminently wearable.
Skai is a scent that tears up the rule book of classical perfumery.Along with other CDG offerings it is in surely an antecedent to the plethora of cutting-edge fragrances being developed today. there are notes of fresh packaging, sharp grapefruit zest, ozone, along with a recently extinguished electrical fire. However, a note breakdown does not do justice to the overall feeling induced. The wearer will feel like a half-human half-machine existing in a post-modern, barren, sanitised, nuclear future.
I find it quite remarkable that a fragrance can paint such a stark picture. Skai sets the imagination running wild. Put this on and imagine arriving at a party having waded through such a landscape (and who in their right mind wouldn't want to smell like that from time to time?)
In many ways Skai is easier to define in terms of what it is not. Its certainly not: romantic, sexy, comforting or safe. The spray mechanism adds to the overall feeling. each spray - far from a light mist - delivers a thick, industrial adhesive coating rather like a product getting its final layer of paint before leaving the production-line.
The first CdC fragrances I sampled were Odeur 53, Odeur 71, Garage, and Skai. Excited by Basenotes reviews, I was drawn to CdC because I have a scent obsession with just about anything I probably shouldn't actually be sniffing (i.e. new car smell, new rubber tires, neoprene, the cheap new shoe smell that permeates Payless stores, etc.).
Skai was my least favorite of the four after the first wear or two. Three fourths of my sample vial later, I found myself panicking over it having been discontinued.
Skai is so beautiful and weird. The opening is pure PVC for me, and after an hour or so it warms up and I think of what it might feel like to be enveloped in a freshly unboxed white leather and vinyl spacesuit. The impression is fresh, clean, white, and airy. It feels warm and comforting in its vague consumer familiarity. The person who described it as clean in a "just unpacked" sense said it best. When I wear it, I feel like a human who was made in a factory, and it's a fun idea to entertain as the day has its way with me.
My only complaints are that it doesn't stick around long enough on my skin or on the market. Alas, I have a sample of CdC Tea on the way and I'm crossing my fingers that it freaks me out then calls to me like Skai did.
I recently explored the Blood Concept line and comparisons to certain Comme Des Garcons compositions were inevitable. That's why while revisiting SKAI, I made my belief stronger that when it comes to the binomial weird/wearable, there's nothing like CDG.
I've to be honest, I'm not able to detect many notes in this composition as SKAI strikes immediatley as one of a kind. PVC (cellophane), lemon, ozonic notes and...incense (of course). Smells of brand new, sort of "just unpacked" with an airy feel given by the ozonic undertones. Incense works as a signature as in most of the CDG's compositions while a barely sweet "lemon-ish" note on top provides an energizing feel.
The ability of Comme Des Garcons is to turn potentially unappealing chemical elements into very enjoyable/wearable ones. Notes that usually make you think about everything but a body fragrance, turns immediately wearable and "natural".
If your idea of "clean" resembles the concept of "brand new" instead of "just showered" there's nothing better than SKAI. Unique and very distinctive.
It 'is', of course, the smell of a rubber swimming pool the moment you unwrap it, and the smell of burning paper extinguished in body cream, and the fake grapefruit normally starring in designer fragrances' summer editions; but it's also denser than that, and it's abstract.
Only when I really went clubbing with this scent that I got the 'great for clubbing' thing. It's that state of unawareness, light-mindedness and confidence that go so well with Skai.
Warmness is usually a thing that comes from the past or from another time: one either recalls ancient rituals and pleasures or cozy memories from his own past, fireplaces, kitchens, sweets and cakes. A warmness that is actually in the present or even the future is a rare thing. This is on the edge of being cool, non emotional but it succeeds.
I haven't tried them all, but I'm sure that even if I did this would still remain my favourite Comme des Carcons fragrance.
I believe this was made by Martine Pallix and Anne-Sophie Chapuis, the same duo that's behind Odeur 53 & 71. And certainly there are some similarities.
I must thank these ladies for making this since there are not many other fragrances available which I feel have my name written on it - with a huge font, even.
Skai (what a great name) is an oddball, but to me it's extremely wearable and unpretentious. Subtle and long lasting energizing delight.
I'm not sure what's in it, and I don't care. It smells wonderfully fresh and warm at the same time, and for sure a dream come true for a science fiction romantic such as myself, this space age fragrance.
Skai makes my imagination run, it creates many different scenes, all the way from white shiny space leather to the atmosphere of faraway planets, down to a more everyday smells of my local paper mill and a new car smell of the interior of an all white Lamborghini Gallardo :)