As designers have all added an exclusive luxury fragrance line to their perfume business it has become problematic for some. The best ones have quality across the line with only a few clunkers within. The other ones have less success. One of the latter has been the Armani exclusive line called Armani Prive.
Armani Prive started in 2004 with four releases. Even then it was two for four with Bois D’Encens and Ambre Soie standing apart. Over the next twelve years that has been about the way this line has gone. For each good one there is a not so good one. I will say the uneven quality always makes me interested to try the new releases because when they are good they can be very good. I received the samples of the two new releases Rouge Malachite and Vert Malachite curious to see how they would be. The Rouge Malachite was an unimpressive pretty tuberose overdosed with an amber synthetic called AmberXtreme. It was at turns pretty followed by aggressive. When I turned to the Vert Malachite I wasn’t sure what to expect. What I found was a white flower perfume streaked with green in all the right places. Perfumer Fabrice Pellegrin really does a nice job in combining the two.
M. Pellegrin begins with a typical citrus opening of bitter orange and petitgrain smoothed over with baie rose. This has become such a generic opening it should be trademarked. Thankfully change was coming as M. Pellegrin uses a green leafy accord to provide the place for jasmine and ylang-ylang to combine with. This might have become banal too but for the skillful interjection of lily. This is a very green tinted lily which cuts through the more boisterous florals. Over time the lily becomes the focal point. It is a slow burn while that happens and at first the lily seems like it is in competition with the jasmine and ylang ylang only to eventually come out on top. Once that happens while still very white flower-ish there is also a lot of green present which adds some needed texture. The base is a mix of woods, benzoin, and vanilla for a sweetly woody foundation.
Vert Malachite has 18-20 hour longevity and average sillage.
It should have been no surprise for a perfume line batting .500 that one would be better than the other. Vert Malachite is a nicely composed floral perfume tailor-made for the upcoming spring.
Disclosure: This review was based on samples provided by Neiman Marcus.