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M/Mink – Ink not mink (March 5, 2012 New Fragrance Listing)

Photo - - Sumie inkstone


“Hey, I love your perfume. What is it?” my sister asked one day when we were out shopping together.

M/Mink by Byredo.” I said.

“Mink?” she asked “Like the animal?”

“No. M/Mink.” I said.

“Minsk? Like the city in Russia?” she said.

“No, not Minsk, which by the way, is the capital of Belarus. I’m wearing M/Mink

“I see the stuttering has returned…”

“I’m not stuttering.” I sputter. “That’s the name of the perfume. Em, Em ink.”

“Oh, I get it. Eminem has a perfume out called Ink and you’re wearing it?” she asked incredulously.

“No. The name of the perfume is the letter M slash M and then the word ink.”

“Oh, okay, Eminem and Slash collaborated on a perfume….”

“Stop. I’ll explain.” I said. “Byredo is a perfume house out of Sweden….” I began.

“Yeah, you’ve mentioned them to me before. You don’t think the line gets the credit it’s due.” my sister said.

“That’s right.”

“You’ve bought quite a few of their scents.” she continued. “Which I covet. So, what’s with the mink?” she asked.

“The name of the perfume comes from the Paris art and design firm called M/M that Byredo partnered with to create the perfume I’m wearing.”

“OK, that explains the M/M part, but what about the ink?” she asked.

“The M/M guys, Mathias Augustyniak and Michael Amzalag do a lot of work with artists like Bjork and Madonna and fashion designers like Yohji Yamamoto and Stella McCartney. In their designs they use a solid black Asian ink, an inkstone, and this is the smell they wanted Byredo to capture in M/Mink.” I explained. Patiently.

“So, tell me about the M/Mink.” she said.

And so I did. I told her how it opens cold and animalic with a powerful blast of fresh, salty, slightly floral and aldehydic adoxal.I said that there is no other opening like this is perfumery. Every time I smell it, my subconscious passes out from bliss -  and we are just at the start. As it moves to the heart, there’s a waxiness and a sweetness from clover honey that gives it body and coaxes the incense forward which gives it warmth and depth. But I also get a pine note – inkstone is made from pine and animal glue - cold and stark against the warm, rich incense. At the base, patchouli leaf gives it an earthy note while amber gives it a muskiness.

The experience is one of smelling something cold and warm at the same time and this is highlighted by the lack of florals in the fragrance. And, while it is well-crafted, M/Mink is not a refined scent – the ingredients aren’t as manipulated or managed as they are in some other scents. There’s a rawness to it that boldly marks the skin, like a tattoo does, but not with ink, but with the scent of delicious, cold, animalic ink.

This is one helluva frag that I can’t get enough of.

“Wow,” said my sister, “I love it the way it smells. Can I have a decant?”

“Sure. They’re five bucks for .7 ml.”

“No special rates for family? You’re not still mad at me for that stunt I pulled on your fourth birthday?”

“Nah, I’m just ticked at all the grief you gave me over the name M/Mink.”

Today, we're adding M/Mink to our decant sample offering. Decants are $6.00.