Fragrance Journey, Part 237

I was having breakfast the other day with a PR exec who’d once done the press for Thierry Mugler’s Angel.

She couldn’t believe I’d never smelt the classic fragrance that spawned a million imitations. So she sent me over a bottle.

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It stayed in the bag for a couple of days. I was in the middle of writing a fragrance feature at the time and permanently coating myself in some other scent or another. Even towards the end of the day when those other smells had faded, I couldn’t bring myself to break through the cellophane and unleash the fragrance inside. I wanted my first encounter with Angel to be as pure as possible, and that meant naked skin and a clean nose.

But a few days later, with the feature in the bag and those other fragrances filed away, I was ready.

I lifted the star-shaped glass bottle from its light-blue box, aimed the nozzle at my wrist and… It was everything I’d hoped for and more. The best way I can describe what I smelt is: disturbing, powerful, sexy and extraordinary.

I didn’t even like it at first sniff. It was too… weird. But after a few seconds, I was madly sniffing my wrists and the air trying to follow  what seemed like a hundred different smells all in (harmonious) collision with one another.

Although Angel is spoken of as if it were some incredibly sweet, candy-floss concoction (I was expecting an overwhelming hit of vanilla and chocolate), it’s anything but. At its heart is quite a masculine, woody patchouli that balances the sweeter notes. And I think it’s this interplay between masculine and feminine that makes Angel feel so contrary and so rebellious.

Perhaps that’s why I like it so much. This isn’t my new signature fragrance. But it’s definitely my alter-ego.

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