Mirrors are reflections of reality. Spend too much time lost in them and you will become a narcissist. Then there are those mirrors found in the fun house at the carnival. These surfaces distort reality. The distortion allows for new perspectives on that which you have seen in a normal way. I am more likely to have to be dragged out of the fun house than I am from the dresser. I like distorted reality. I like the way it causes me to think about non-reality. In perfumery it can be dangerous to create fragrances which distort reality too severely. It is a task for only the clearest eyed of creative directors. One of those is Stefania Squeglia of Mendittorosa.
Sig.ra Squeglia has shown her adventurous nature throughout the collection but it is in the three perfumes which make up the Talismans series where it reaches its apotheosis. On the website it describes the fragrances which make up Talismans as, “a concept of scents with strong message and vision”. Sig.ra Squeglia has done that. The most recent addition to the Talismans, Nettuno, is another example.
Sig.ra Squeglia continues working with perfumer Amelie Bourgeois with whom she has collaborated on all of the Mendittorosa fragrances to date. I imagine for Mme Bourgeois this partnership is freeing in its own way allowing her to push her own boundaries.
Nettuno is inspired by Marco Pesatori’s poem Il Volo di Nettuno (Neptune’s Flight). There is a part of the larger poem that I think captures the stylism behind Mendittorosa as a brand:
Through age-old planets
With an idea
That has no more ideas
It is that which Nettuno captures the sense of vast interplanetary distances filled with the chill of deep space.
Model Tresor Prijs
Nettuno opens with a cold water accord of cyclamen providing the aqueous underpinning for pink pepper and blue ginger. Blue ginger has a very pronounced pine needle scent profile. The pink pepper brings out the subtler peppery facets within this ingredient. Mme Bourgeois then creates what she calls a “complex rose accord”. I would call it a very metallic rose. I have always liked this kind of distorted reflection of rose as it feels trapped within a mirror. A very soft powdery iris provides the figurative tail of a comet as we zoom through it to find a leather accord on the other side. In Sogno Reale Mme Bourgeois’ leather accord was made more primitive. In Nettuno it is made more transparent. It feels like it is an illusion of outer space. Finally, Mme Bourgeois tunes an array of white musks into a version of icy Neptune as we have arrived in orbit; the chill settling in.
Nettuno has 16-18 hour longevity and average suillage.
I am, so far, a fan of the kind of perfume Sig.ra Squeglia is producing. These are made for the adventurous perfume lover. One who, like me, revels in seeing the world slightly distorted like a fun house mirror. Mendittorosa is slowly and surely filling up a perfumed fun house full of delightfully quirky visions. Nettuno is the latest installation.
Disclosure: This review was based on a sample of Nettuno from Mendittorosa at Esxence 2016.