London’s unisex Commodity fragrances have just hit the shores of the UAE (you’ll find the range at Sephora stores) and we’re more than just a little bit excited. Much like the UAE-based Arcadia range, Commodity fragrances have a collection of scents that we like across the board, something we find is rare when it comes to boutique fragrance brands.
‘Velvet’ is a creation by master perfumer Jerome Epinette, the nose behind many Atelier Cologne scents and a good chunk of Byredo’s current stable – including one of our all-time favourites, Bal d’Afrique (you can read our review of this stunning fragrance here). Along with ‘Wool‘, it’s part of Commodity’s Black Collection, described as dark, mysterious and moody (a rather accurate description, we think).
‘Velvet’ is our second review of a fragrance by Commodity and it’s complex, quite unusual and more than a little perplexing…’Velvet’ really is a tale of two fragrances. The top notes last much longer on the skin than Commodity stablemate ‘Wool‘, and they’re quite different to the dry down – much more oriental than the base, which is firmly in the woody camp. The top notes of roasted almond and coconut water are mere support players to the overwhelming clove bud, which is rather aggressive and gives the fragrance a start that is not dissimilar to your church incense/candle style scent, drawing frequent comparisons to Maison Margiela’s By the Fireplace. The dry down, however, is like another fragrance altogether. It’s softer and sexier, sitting very much in the woody category with base notes of blonde woods, white birch and black amber. Amber’s favourite stablemate, vanilla, pops up in the mid notes in the form of vanilla flower, bringing a touch of sweetness to the end result aided by velvet rose petals and heliotropine. Heliotropine is an organic compound that can be used to impart an almond, vanilla or cherry note, and when you combine that with the roast almond top note you get a marzipan-like element emerging mid dry down. The fragrance story puts emphasis on the painstakingly sourced Turkish rose petals (picked at sunrise with the morning dew still on the petals, apparently). This is definitely one for lovers of complex, unusual fragrances – which we are – so it’s no wonder it caught out attention!
Despite its hero rose accord, ‘Velvet’ definitely works as a unisex scent, more so than ‘Wool‘. Like with ‘Wool‘, we’d like a little more silage and length, but overall this is an intriguing blend that is sophisticated, mysterious and warm. A great scent for the cooler months.
If you like ‘Velvet’, you’ll probably like ‘Jazz Club’ by Maison Martin Margiela (read more here)…
Available from Sephora.ae and Sephora boutiques across the UAE. Tell them we scent you. x
Top: Roasted Almond, Clove Buds, Coconut Water
Heart: Heliotropine, Vanilla Flower, Velvet Rose Petals
Base: Blonde Woods, White Birch, Black Amber
Season: Autumn, Winter
Destinations: Istanbul, Morocco, Cuba