First things first: yes, I’ve been gone a long time. I accidentally managed to delete a bunch of the reviews that I was working on, and in my frustration, decided to just take a break and regroup. Days became weeks, weeks became months, and now here we are.
Jumping right back in, though! Have a fragrance review, why don’t you?
Full disclosure: I am by no means a fragrance expert. I can’t tell you the chemical composition of an aldehyde. I don’t keep up with the hottest, newest niche brands. If that is the sort of person you need me to be in order to survive reading my thoughts on fragrance without clutching pearls at my ignorance, you will be disappointed.
What I am, however, is somebody who likes to both smell nice things and smell nice myself. I’m a bit picky as I am sensitive to smells and so many a time have had to reject a scent based on it being slightly too heavy or having a note that gave me an instant headache. To give you an idea: 75% of the perfumes that I sample, from all price ranges and brands, are too strong or headache-inducing for me. So I figured that I’d write reviews of the scents that actually work for me on the chance that people with the same sensitive noses might benefit.
With all that said, today I’m going to talk about a fragrance that I’ve actually had in sample form for about a year, yet hadn’t really experimented with until recently for no apparent reason.
“Almost Transparent Blue” is from A Lab On Fire, which is a pretty fantastic name for a fragrance house, if you ask me! While I’m sure for some people it sounds more silly and just begets mental images of perfumers screwing up and setting their chemistry labs ablaze, I just think it rolls off the tongue nicely and is unique enough that it sticks in your mind – a good thing for a brand name, no?
The name “Almost Transparent Blue” presumably comes from the Ryu Murakami book of the same name, but as I haven’t read the book, I cannot give any opinion of how well-matched the scent and novel may be.
I purchased my sample from Lucky Scent, which describes Almost Transparent Blue as a “futuristic urban citrus” alongside buzzwords like “strange,” “ultramodern,” “stark,” and “industrial.”
Well, Lucky Scent is prone to some flights of fancy with their fragrance description – and I mean that in the best way possible – but in this case I’m really not sure that I agree with their assessment. Ah, we’ll get to that in a moment. First of all, let’s look at the notes:
Top: Lime and yuzu
Middle: Thyme flower and aldehydes
Base: Hinoki, musk and cedarwood
I suspect that I found this perfume while looking for hinoki, as hinoki wood is one of my favorite scents – it’s just used so much more often in masculine-oriented fragrance. Almost Transparent Blue bills itself as unisex, which can sometimes end up meaning too heavy and heady for my tastes. A lot of perfumers seem to believe that for a scent to be viable as a “masculine” fragrance, they have to make it strong and overdo it (to my tastes, at least) with heavier notes like musk and woods and spice.
I’m relieved to report that Almost Transparent Blue does not fall into this trap. Well, I guess they’d have to avoid being too heavy with a name like that – you can’t call something sluggish and heady “transparent” without some serious dissonance.
For my full review, please click the read more if you’re on the main page. Otherwise, just continue reading!