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August 10, 2005

Fragrance review : Divine L’Homme de Coeur

Monet_iris

Rated 4.5 out of 5.0

Star rating: 5 stars--outstanding/potential classic, 4 stars--very good, 3 stars--adequate, 2 stars--disappointing, 1 star--poor.

The scent of iris is one of the most complex and elusive, weaving in metallic violets and snow covered roots. It is a melancholy fragrance by its nature, and it is fascinating to explore the possibilities it offers.

Divine is a small French perfume house located in Dinard on the northern coast of Brittany. Founded by Yvon Mouchel, its line includes three feminine and three masculine fragrances, out of which L’Homme de Coeur and L’Homme Sage are composed by a young perfumer Yann Vasnier of Quest International. L’Homme de Coeur is a very interesting interpretation of iris that exploits its crisp coolness more than its powderiness redolent of violets.

The iris leitmotif that is about to persist like a gentle melody throughout the entire composition is evident upon the first inhale. Tinged by sparkling juniper, iris steps in the background and allows cypress to dominate. The sheer scent of cypress, reminiscent of fresh pinecones and dry needles is a wonderful counterpoint to the metallic glow of iris. The spicy fruit scent of angelica lends an unexpectedly vibrant note that provides a perfect segue into the voluptuous iris heart. As the fragrance dries down, it warms up with sweet winey mustiness of ambergris. Yet, iris that provided a cool breeze leaves its mark, especially when its earthy and icy qualities are heightened by vetiver. As a woman, I feel perfectly comfortable wearing L’Homme de Coeur, however on a man, it is just ravishing.

Fragrances and samples are available from Divine website (contact their very helpful sales representative). In addition, Luckyscent carries the line.

Photo: Claude Monet. Monet's Garden, the Irises. 1900. Oil on canvas. Musée d'Orsay, Paris. abcgallery.com

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