Monday, February 29, 2016

Annick Goutal Rose Pompon eau de toilette review

Annick Goutal has a number of rose-centered fragrances in their line, each one different but somehow designed to be "contemporary" to its time. This year's Rose Pompon is the fourth, and arguably the most flirty, sparkly one.

Rose Absolue in 1984 was an absolute rose bomb of a scent. If you fancy yourself quite the classic rose lover, you might like this blend of Rose de Mai, Turkish rose, Bulgarian rose, Rose Damascene, Egyptian rose, and Moroccan rose. This is possibly the most luxurious and opulent rose scent from AG. But you better love your roses.

Ce Soir ou Jamais was launched in 1999, and is the most exotic and enigmatic of the four; Turkish rose with a touch of hibiscus, warm amber, and a musky ambrette. This is the "warmest" of the four rose fragrances in the line, and leans a bit closer to the Oriental category of perfumes.

When Annick's daughter Camille took over after her mother's passing, she launched Rose Splendide in 2010. If Rose Absolue is a bouquet, this is like a single stem of rose; simple, pure and romantic, with a trace of freshness from a silvery, almost minty pear note and fading to a soft sensual skin-like musk. (A bit like towel-dried skin after you showered with rose-scented soap.)

Rose Pompon launched this year in 2016, is a different animal. It is extremely contemporary, in the sense that it is what I call a "pink lady" scent. Like other mainstream bestsellers of today, it starts fruity, fresh and sparkly, has peony to add transparency and lightness to the central floral accord, and a shower-fresh base of woods and white musk. And just as with Miss Dior Blooming Bouquet, Burberry Brit Sheer, Versace Bright Crystal, Jo Malone Peony & Blush Suede, or the crisper Chanel Chance, it not only has a similar odor profile but is also dressed in girly pink. I bet if you like those, you will like the fluted ombre pink bottle, and the juice of Rose Pompon equally.

Top notes: pink pepper, blackcurrant, raspberry
Heart notes: rose centifolia, Bulgarian rose, Taïf rose, peony
Base notes: cedar, patchouli, white musk.

Probably the best thing about it is the tart juiciness that lasts throughout. It might be the blackcurrant and something about the pink pepper that gives an almost citrus facet to it. And it's linear in a good way; the scent doesn't dissolve into a watery indistinct floral after the first hour. The zesty fruitiness lingers and continues to add a bit of needed dimension and playfulness to the fragrance.

Very unique it is probably not. But pretty, bubbly, accessible and likable it definitely is. And I kinda suspect that was what the brand was aiming for anyway. If you love the mass market premium florals like Miss Dior Blooming Bouquet or Bright Crystal, but want to step it up just a tiny bit this year, Rose Pompon might be one to sniff out and add to your collection.

The main con I can say about it is the projection is not stellar on me. I do have dry skin that does not hang on to fresh scents, and this maybe throws about 1 hour on me before it becomes a light skin scent. I was actually surprised to still smell it lingering on my skin 4 hours later because it was so soft I assumed it was long gone by then. So the lasting power turned out quite decent for an eau de toilette - but it won't be noticeable unless you brush past someone.

Still, it's nice for Spring and warm weather - or those who are ready to try their first rose but don't want something overly heady, strong or sweet.

I personally favor the dreamy, elegant Rose Splendide over this for myself, but then again it might just be that I already own and smelt too many "pink ladies" in the past few years. I do expect Rose Pompon, the new kid on the block, to out-sell Rose Splendide - probably all the Goutal roses - for a while. The life of the party always gets noticed first. (Especially when she wears the prettiest dress as well!)

Rose Pompon comes in an eau de toilette concentration, and is available in 50ml (SGD$179) and 100ml ($235) sizes at Escentials boutiques and counters.


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