Quick reviews of two niche variations on green: Nomenclature Shi_so and Cire Trudon Deux (II).
I am rather late with this one — Shi_so is exactly the sort of crisp and light fragrance that comes in handiest in high summer. Like the others in the Nomenclature line, it's highlighting a synthetic aromachemical, in this case, glycolierral, which is meant to capture crushed ivy leaves. Perfumer Bertrand Duchaufour has whipped it into a lively tonic done in shades of pale green just like the picture, with a bunch of herbs and spices (mint, basil, shiso, cumin, cardamom and lemon verbena are all mentioned in the description) and some tart fruits. It's bracing in the opening, and smells to me first like crushed basil with lemon, then a bit like cilantro. Shi_so stays in an brisk rather than deep register (the description also aptly includes the words "metallic flash") and as you'd expect, it has a completely modern feel. It's green and bright straight through, but the dry down is less sharp, more soapy. It's possibly an acquired taste — the opinions of innocent bystanders were decidedly mixed. I find it fun, and it's definitely worth sampling if you're in need of a new green. Plus, the lasting power is excellent.
Cire Trudon Deux
Moving out of the kitchen and into the woods, we have Deux (II), from Cire Trudon's debut set of personal fragrances. Deux was developed by perfumer Lyn Harris, formerly of Miller Harris, and her description is better than anything I will come up with: "This perfume’s vibrant greenery is a forest painting: pines, juniper and cedar covered in moss and berries on a damp, earthy floor. II is a modern take on eau de Cologne; a green, peppery scent with orange bigarade from Brazil." If Shi_so was high summer, Duex feels more like summer fading into fall — exactly the weather here today. The very peppery citrus in the opening reads as dusky rather than bright, and the pine and juniper, mingling with a light strand of incense, are calming and peaceful rather than brisk. In synaesthesia terms, I see it as a medium forest green shot with flecks of brown. Nicely done and easy to wear, and I'm impressed with the others from the brand as well (look for a review of Bruma on Friday or next Tuesday).
The alternative: the brisker and earthier Sonoma Scent Studio Forest Walk
The details: $190 for 100 ml Eau de Parfum at Cire Trudon or Barneys, or $110 for a coffret of all five fragrances in 10 ml sprays. If you buy a full bottle directly from Cire Trudon, they'll include a sample, and let you return or exchange the fragrance if you don't like it (and if you didn't open it).