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Bijou Romantique – Zou Bijou Bijou – April 2, 2012 New Fragrance Listing

Photo - Wikipedia - Hooker Emerald Brooch - Musuem of Natural History, USA

One of the ways that I keep updated about perfumes is from newsletters. I sign up for them all - that’s how I learn about deals, steals and launches. For example, from now until April 8, Ormonde Jayne is offering free shipping anywhere in the world. With a low pound and free shipping, this is the time to stock up on your Ormnode Jayne favourites, like Ormnode Jayne Woman. I call this a steal. When Annick Goutal promotes a gift set, I call that a deal. And when the État Libre d’Orange newsletter dropped into my inbox recently and announced their new launches, a frisson of excitement shot through the niche. But it was the description of Bijou Romantique that made the little hairs inside my nose stand up and take notice.

Then, last week Bijou Romantique began showing up on blogs that I read and trust.  Jessica, over  at Now Smell This said, “When I read the initial announcement for Etat Libre d’Orange’s release of Bijou Romantique, I had a feeling that I would enjoy this perfume; now that I’ve tried it a few times, I’m happy to say that it has fulfilled all my expectations.” And, Persolaise says, “This is Putain Des Palaces rescued by Richard Gere bearing a diamond ring. Lovely.” But it was Elena at Perfume Shrine that tipped that scale: “With Bijou Romantique Bijaoui offers a nuanced composition that hovers on the precipice between savory and sweet, rich and satisfying….” That’s when I made room on my perfume shelf for my latest purchase.

Then, Esther mentioned it in her post last week. Well, with so much buzz about Bijou Romantique, I knew that I had to share my new fave frag with other perfumistas here at the niche.

Bijou Romantique’s opening is a refined balance of citrusy bergamot and lemon, mellowed with a white floral note from ylang ylang and gently warmed by pink pepper. As it moves to the heart, clary sage adds a soft herbaceous note that complements the dirty/floral note from iris root. The iris root also gives the frag a retro, powdery feel. There is coconut here too, nutty, sweet and tropical. At the base, vetiver gives it a balsamic, woody earthiness, but it also has a chocolate aspect that plays beautifully off the sweet, exotic vanilla and the vanilla ice cream facet of benzoin. Patchouli is here too contributing a dirty mustiness that weaves through the scent.

The drydown is sweet, creamy, woody and earthy which sounds heavy, but the construction of the fragrance is so polished – nothing is loud, sharp or hard - that it’s rich and opulent but delicate too.

Just what you’d expect from talented perfumer Mathilde Bijaoui, who also created Tilda Swinton Like This - another fave from État Libre d’Orange. Does this mean the boys at ÉLO – makers of Don’t Get Me Wrong Baby I Don’t Swallow, Fat Electrician, Rien, Jasmin et Cigarettes - have lost their edge? Nah, I think they just knew that Bijou Romantique was going to be a gem of a fragrance.

Today, we’re adding Bijou Romantique  to our decant offering. Decants are $5.00.