Sunday, July 29, 2007

Caron Nocturnes

One of my earliest perfume memories is that I fell in love with Nocturnes bath gelee as a child. It came with one of my mother's perfume purchases and boy, am I glad I happened to be a little girl with a flair for the dramatic. I'd already had it in my heart to grow up to be a singer, and didn't every singer take luxurious perfumed baths? Before Nocturnes, I didn't really care about perfume but I have loved perfume ever since that day I believe my eyes were opened.

I found this description on

...Nocturnes for Women was created by Caron in 1981. Nocturnes Perfume by Caron is a modernized version of Nuit de Noel blending jasmine, ylang-ylang, musk, and rose...

Jan Moran's notes:
Nocturnes de Caron (Floral - Aldehyde) 1981
Top: Aldehydes, bergamot, mandarin, greens
Heart: Rose, jasmine, ylang-ylang, tuberose, stephanotis, lily of the valley, orris, cyclamen
Base: Vanilla, amber, musk, sandalwood, vetiver, benzoin

I have seen it maligned as being too "soapy", or "old ladyish", but that's a mossy Aldehydic Floral for you. There is that pesky skin cream note (like Nivea or La Mer) that can turn me off, but with new obsessions in my life such as Une Fleur de Cassie and KenzoAmour, I'm in the mood for woodsy-creamy aldehydes. Nocturnes is a citrusy-powdery, white floral (stephanotis) blend, among the freshest, most alluring ways to wear sandalwood. I think it leans towards the orange spectrum and Alfred Sung Encore comes to mind. Nocturnes doesn't bear much resemblance to its mother perfume. Its predecessor, Nuit de Noel (1922), is comparatively richer, more densely powdery with mossy, chypratic nuances like Chanel No.5 (1921) except heavier, woodsier and less sweet. Nocturnes is an early '80s beauty, a semi-classical Floral Oriental (woody), a masterpiece as far as modern-classical, neither-here-nor-there fusion florals go: luminous (a little transparent), retro glam (a little mossy), and nicely, smoothly blended. As refreshing as it is, it never veers into sportiness; it retains its character: a fine French perfume.

One day, not long after I'd discovered Nocturnes bath gelee, I found an eau de toilette bottle of Nocturnes at a school fundraising bazaar. I was so ecstatic to see it there but I hadn't saved enough allowance to buy it, even though I really wanted it, so I spent it all on some other perfume, only to spritz it once and regret it. "Hmm", I thought, "both are French, yet they're so incredibly different!".