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Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Memoirs of a Geisha...Fragrance Line: Aroma M Perfumes Geisha Green

I am blessed to have been approached by Aroma M’s Maria McElroy with an offer to sample her line of beautiful perfume oils. Maria is an artist and a perfumer whose seven years in Japan shaped her creative aesthetic and led her to start Aroma M. 
For well over fifteen years, she’s been creating her lovely line of perfume oils (there are eight) and her EDPs (there are four). The Japanese influence is present both in the design of the bottles (Yuzen paper from Kyoto wrapped around glass bottles) and in the the notes with which she experiments. 
What drew me to Aroma M was the concept of gender-neutral, therapeutic, color-coordinated scent. For one, I never stick to the feminine-masculine fragrance binary (as I’m sure you’re well aware that I tend towards scents that are ‘manly’). Also, I wear perfume as much to lift my spirits and color my day as I do to just smell good. 
With this all in mind, I sent Maria a list of the scents that appealed to me the most, and a day or two later I received a beautifully presented little love pack of six oil samples, a lovely handwritten note from Maria, and some well-written information on the line.
(A FYI: Lovely presentation and personalized touches make reviewing - and shopping, of course - a much more pleasant experience. There is nothing worse than a company, small or large, that does not know how to treat its customer. I say this as someone who is a consumer first and a blogger second.)
I’m going to start my series on Aroma M with my favorite of the scents I tried. When I received my love pack, I eagerly read the fragrance descriptions. Had I guessed at the outset which scent would be my favorite, I would have been utterly wrong. There’s no way I could have accurately predicted my favorite. This just goes to show you that with fragrance, you must  wear a scent before you make a judgment. Fragrance addicts cannot survive on descriptions alone! It’s funny, though; the lovely Victoria of EauMG (and lovely she is - have you seen those lips?!) tweeted at me that her favorite Aroma M fragrance oil was in fact the very one that would end up being my favorite as well.
At this point, you must be dying for me to cut to the chase. Sorry! Ok, I present to you Aroma M Geisha Green, one of the most sensational smells I have had the pleasure of encountering in a long, long time. 

(picture from Aroma M's website)
Upon my first application of Geisha Green, my eyes widened and I really immediately wrote the word “SENSATIONAL” in capital letters on my press notes (yes, I take notes on press releases so that I can refer to them when I do my reviews). I’m not sure if any of you dear readers have ever had the opportunity to drink absinthe before. I love absinthe, since I am a licorice freak. Anyway, I’m sure that you know that the proper way to drink absinthe is with a special slotted spoon with a sugar cube; the sugar helps to sweeten the tarty strength of the liqueur: the play of tart, sweet, strong, and heady makes for a drink that was famed for causing hallucinations. 
(awesome picture of an absinthe fountain from uncrate.com)

Well, I damn near hallucinated from joy while wearing this. The best way to describe Geisha Green is to imagine an exquisite absinthe strained through a violet sieve. The first hour or so is this incredible and dizzyingly warm licorice-violet combination. I credit this warmth to the amber and tonka bean base notes; there is a powdery feel which the amber lends, and the coziness of the tonka bean keeps the licorice from being too sharp. It’s genius.
As the time passes (and if you haven’t fainted from the sheer joy of initial application), there is this beautifully mellow fruitiness that appears to play with the amber and tonka bean. The licorice and violet take a backstage to this delicious jam that only increases the overall warmth of the scent. Officially, this jam is mandarin and black currant; I smell just an overall fruitiness, although I can discern the currant more. I’d call the mix of the two notes “fruit punch for adults”. I normally cannot stand overly fruity fragrances but this is so truly well done. In my notes I wrote that the drydown is “exquisite: warm, fruity, and melds to the skin." This is exactly right.
Geisha Green is sexy, but not in a specifically feminine or masculine way. It’s just so...all-encompassing.  This would smell as good on me as it would on one of my guy friends. I love it. I also notice that when I wear it, I feel decidedly more comfortable in my own skin. 
Basically, this will be purchased in a full-size bottle (8ml rollerball, $50USD) as soon as my sample runs out...which will be very soon. 
Aroma M fragrances can be found at www. Aromam.com and at these retailers.

11 love notes:

Larie said...

Oooh, I've been looking for new perfumeries to try - adding this one to the list! Sounds lovely :)

Carrie Meredith said...

Really great review, Joey! I'm very impressed. :) My favorites are Geisha Noire and Geisha Violet.

PerilouslyPale said...

Love your descriptions! I'm afraid of the day when I become as infatuated with fragrance as I am cosmetics. I'm already poor! LOL

Joey said...

Larie, I'm overall very impressed with the fragrances I've tried from Aroma M. Definitely try them out!

Joey said...

Carrie, thank you SO much! Your feedback and support means the world to me.

I really enjoyed Geisha Noire. Geisha Violet I just tried last night and was surprised at how...not violet it was. I need to wear it a few more times before I can make a decision. It was lovely, but not me - at least I don't think so.

Joey said...

Christa, I'm sorry for contributing to your poverty lololol!

Joey said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Carrie Meredith said...

Joey- I know what you mean about Violet not smelling very Violet-y, it smells much more like green fig to me.

Joey said...

Ok, I need to wear it again today, Carrie - I didn't get fig at all. I smelled a very green iris for the first two hours, and then it was cocoa. Very strange.

lexi920 said...

Oooh intriguing! I've been really interested in smaller, indie perfume companies lately.

Probably having something to do with being a fan of yours!

Joey said...

Aw Lexi! =) you're making me blush. Give Aroma M a try!