Of smocks and spliffs… Habanita by Molinard The Perfumed Dandy’s Classic Collection

Reflecting, she finds it easy enough to see how it all became so habit forming.

It seemed such fun at first: diving into deep resinous pools of laughter, smoking reefers with new friends in rooftop courtyards, potted geraniums lining up on tiled walls.

It seemed natural that after a while someone should introduce mystic philosophy and suggest it wasn’t necessary to wash absolutely every day, healthier in fact not to hose down each dawn.

Though, she recalls, it was thought best to at least try and mask the more animal aromas…

A spritz of an antique great uncle’s vetiver here some patchouli oil behind an ear there.

Then the musky smell really wasn’t that bad, quite, well, sexual, really.

Once you got used to it.

Soon, she says distantly, they were floating from room to room quoting Gurdjieff dressed in floor length embroidered kaftans and debating Jung in killim strewn salons.

Someone said, she forgets who now, someone said they should take a six month trip to Tangiers, live on nutmeg flavoured creme brulee and trust funds.

How they laughed and laughed until someone cried out in pain.

Then someone else, oh, she really can’t remember her name: a feminist, always reading de Beauvoir aloud to the group.

“She got very upset about everything, accused someone of wearing leather, which was banned, so we abandoned our plans and made up bouquets of roses we stole from the botanical gardens.”

Happy times.

Where are they now?

A blank distant look, just a hint of something moving behind the eyes…

“Oh, I couldn’t tell you. No idea.”

*************

Habinita Eau de Parfum is the pre existential smell of 1920s bohemian Paris re-imagined by a well meaning West Coast new age commune.

All the rough edges and intellectual rigour knocked off and replaced with a dose of sugared sentimentality and only slightly knowing sexuality.

It’s sophisticated in a long line skirt and short bob cut sort of a way, somewhat marred by a little too much tie dye.

After a quick burst of petitgrain to clear the way at the opening it’s a mainly balmy sweetness in the shape of mastic, vanilla and unsalted amber; spicy nutmeg and assorted woods, especially cedar and sandal, that takes centre stage.

Sure enough there’s a feral element, but the musk doesn’t quite cut the mustard and frankly there’s a bit of a gap where the oakmoss ought to be.

As for the flowers, they prove to be really not that powerful after all, save for a brisk geranium at the beginning that persists a little way into the heart.

Overall it is very long lasting semi-oddity, sure to draw knowing glances, especially from the fully self-actualised.

But one can’t help wishing it was… well, more self confident, brutal and, frankly, odd.

*************

Gender wise?

This is the endless Summer of Love, there’s nothing here that a man in a smock (metaphorically or otherwise) couldn’t get away with.

Yours ever

The Perfumed Dandy

The Perfumed Dandy

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14 Comments

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14 responses to “Of smocks and spliffs… Habanita by Molinard The Perfumed Dandy’s Classic Collection

  1. Another beautiful review–Thank you!

    • Dear Mr Sherapop
      So nice of you to pop over.
      My head is still reeling from the wonderful debate on ‘The End of Perfumery’ at your splendid salon.
      Once my thoughts are gathered I shall be sure to respond.
      Yours ever
      The Perfumed Dandy

  2. This review was bittersweet. Reminds me of those times where getting use to new ideas was both interesting and at the same time allot more appreciated in retrospect. Like the notes of life one doesn’t quite realize existed until they are absent and sadly gone for good. It amazes me how different every one of your reviews/stories is – yet similar in your ability to transport me to a specific place. Clear enough to create a palpable ambiance while vague enough and empty enough in just the right places so I can fill in the blanks and make it personal for myself and anyone reading I would guess.
    Thanks for your blog Monsieur Dandy you have a unique talent for making these fragrances live in a different way.

  3. Habanita is one of my top five favorites. Greatly enjoyed reading your post.

    • Dear Christopher
      Thank you so much for taking the time out to visit the Dandy’s pad.
      I wonder do your prefer the older eau de toilette composition or are you an habitue of the newer Molinard as pictured above -or both indeed?
      I am always curious as to the preferences of a true connoisseur.
      Yours ever
      The Perfumed Dandy

  4. Far out man!….
    Can I have a hit off of that ?
    Loved the review
    L

  5. I wanted to like this one (what a bottle!) but it doesn’t play nice with my skin. I still plan to give it another try.
    Nice review!

    • Thank you Undina
      It really is a most handsome bottle, designed by Lalique no less I believe (or at the vvery least inspired by the great glass maker).
      I think it would be fair to say The Dandy wanted to like this one more too…but I have heard and smelt great things from others.
      I feel it may be very prone to skin type variations…
      Yours ever
      The Perfumed Dandy

    • Thank you Undina
      It really is a most handsome bottle, designed by Lalique no less I believe (or at the vvery least inspired by the great glass maker).
      I think it would be fair to say The Dandy wanted to like this one more too…but I have heard and smelt great things from others.
      I feel it may be very prone to skin type variations…
      Yours ever
      The Perfumed Dandy

  6. Well, Mr. PDandy, my reaction to Habanita was similar to your reaction to Britney Spears Fantasy so you get the idea. Have a lovely perfumed day.

  7. rosestrang

    Reminds me of the first half of Martin Amis’s ‘The Pregnant Widow’ – he also captures well the naivety and posturing of that era – with all the predictable instincts and bourgeoisie loyalties firmly in place underneath!
    These sorts of people make me feel sort of exhausted! Today’s versions exist on Facebook with their endless ‘inspirational’ quotes. Good grief I sound cynical! But your review refreshes me. Well observed, as always!

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