New Perfume Review Ex Nihilo Viper Green- Cold-Blooded

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I grew up around snakes in South Florida. I was fascinated with them. One thing which always kept me intrigued was that they were cold-blooded. If I was handling a non-poisonous snake the lack of warmth, as it slithered around my forearm and through my fingers, was an interesting contrast. Because of the scales it always felt like a dry kind of cold to me. Mrs. C is terribly afraid of snakes and my interactions are now limited to getting them out of her vegetable garden. Ex Nihilo Viper Green captures the serpentine chill without turning venomous.

Ex Nihilo Creative Team

Ex Nihilo has been a brand in transition over the last year or so. When the creative team of Sylvie Loday, Olivier Royere, and Benoit Verdier started the brand it was only available in a Paris boutique with a design aesthetic which allowed a consumer to add the last note to their perfume. After two years they have steadily expanded the places they can be found which makes it difficult for that bit of personalization to be added in. It has been a move for the better because it has produced perfumes which feel more complete which Viper Green benefits from. Perfumer Nadage Le Garlantezec uses a spine of cool green ingredients which allow for florals and patchouli to slither over.

Nadege Le Garlantezec

Viper Green opens on a tart green mandarin paired with angelica root. This is the beginning of the green thread which runs throughout. Galbanum intensifies that thread while Mme Le Garlantezec uses a synthetic ingredient called Rosyfolia. What that does is provide a rose tinted muguet. That bit of muguet that is green is very present in Rosyfolia which allows it to pick up the galbanum just in time for jasmine to pick up the floral baton. Some powdery iris softens the central part of the development and provides a bit of the cold-blooded nature. A very potent vetiver supported by a slightly earthy patchouli is the final part.

Viper Green has 10-12 hour longevity and average sillage.

Viper Green is not a fanged fragrance despite the name. It is the sense of a cool green snake slithering languidly over your skin. I have enjoyed handling this snake in these early days of summer.

Disclosure: This review is based on a sample provided by Ex Nihilo.

Mark Behnke

New Perfume Review Narciso Rouge- A More Typical Shade of Musk

There are brands which have picked a perfume lane to travel in. Those brands will mine every shade and nuance of the style they have chosen. This is certainly true of Narciso Rodriguez who have been doing this with musk-centric perfumes for fifteen years. Over thirty-plus releases they have kind of exhausted the variations. Now maybe it is time to try to improve on the more well-known. Narciso Rouge feels like that kind of perfume to me.

Sonia Constant

A team of perfumers, Sonia Constant and Nadege le Garlantezec, are responsible for designing Rouge. They go back and design around tropes familiar to those who love musk perfumes. Rose and iris as the floral, check. Cedar and vetiver as the base, check. Here is the difference, while the ingredients are nothing new there is an overt sultriness to Rouge that the perfumers manage to evoke I found engaging.

Nadege le Garlantezec

The opening is a lipstick rose accord of iris and rose. when this accord is done right it gives off a sense of sophistication and seduction. The perfumers do a great version here. It reminds me of lips perfectly lacquered in crimson lipstick; almost velvety in nature. The musks are titrated in over an hour or so. As the time goes on there is a classically sensual style of musk against the rose accord. It is sort of like a rough kiss on the perfect lips mussing up the perfection. The cedar comes in to try and clean things up with a greenish woody base. Vetiver accentuates the green quality of the wood finishing things off in a reliable manner.

Rouge has 10-12 hour longevity and average sillage.

I think it can be easy to dismiss new Narciso Rodriguez releases because there has been so many released. There is a bit of a sense of repetition beginning to set in. Rouge caused me to consider whether composing in a more typical style of musk isn’t still worth the effort.

Disclosure: This review is based on a sample provided by Narciso Rodriguez.

Mark Behnke