Some fragrances from that period seem to have been designed with smoke in mind to be mixed at the time of use, one half of some ambient gin and tonic. It was as if the composed smell needed an audience: perfume supplied the music, smoke the crowd noises.
— From Jasmin et Cigarette, Luca Turin's latest column at NZZ Folio.
[Daniela] Andrier explained at the fragrance’s launch that she took inspiration from the soap form of Infusion d’Iris, that she wanted it to smell like a man had used his girlfriend’s soap in the shower and had the lingering smell of her scent on his skin. Intriguingly the two fragrances contain exactly the same collection of notes – the difference between them is achieved by the varied dosings of each ingredient.
— On Prada's new fragrance, Infusion d'Homme. Read more at Wallpaper magazine.
The brand’s demographics have aged along with its scents, and the buzz — fickle and capricious — has wandered off to grace other, cooler names. Lauder put everything it has into Sensuous. The risk the company is taking is serious. Sensuous is a wood, and wood scents for women are notoriously perilous since wood is associated with “masculine” (incorrectly; see Feminité du Bois by Shiseido). Lauder scents are historically either florals or aldehydics (i.e. powders like White Linen). But this is a bet on change. If the bet works, Sensuous will lower the all-important age of Lauder’s clientele; if it doesn’t, it may also turn off existing clients.
— Chandler Burr on the importance of Sensuous to Estee Lauder; read more at The New York Times. And by the way, for anyone who has had trouble finding them, here is a link to all of Burr's Scent Notes columns.