4 September 2015

Review: Caron Pour Un Homme

Name: Pour Un Homme
House: Caron
Nose: Ernest Daltroff
Date: 1934

Rating: 5/5
Scent: Lavender and vanilla

Autumn seems to have arrived quickly in London, and with the rain beating down outside I find myself reaching for a comforting scent to wear in the early morning. Caron's Pour Un Homme was composed by Ernest Daltroff, the perfume house's founder, in 1934. Whilst it has inevitably been subject to a number of reformulations over the years (as all perfumes are), it is still at its core a beautifully seductive mix of lavender and vanilla. If that sounds like a simple combination it is because it is, and yet, it is master class in balance of composition that makes you realise you why it has stuck around for over eighty years where so many others have dated poorly.

Pour Un Homme opens with a herbaceous, almost camphorous, lavender that is bracingly fresh and crisp. I also smell a hint of lemon which helps to bring out the cleaner side of the lavender, with the vanilla present but certainly taking to the background for now. Within half an hour, once those fresh-smelling smaller chain molecules have evaporated off your skin, a beautifully smooth vanilla comes through, marrying wonderfully with the lavender. At first the vanilla is not so much sweet as it is warm, with a musky undertone that makes me think of clean skin - think more of skin moisturised after a bath, rather than a barbershop feel one would expect from your typical masculine scent.

After a few hours, once we hit the dry down proper, the vanilla has become smoother and sweeter, accompanied by a creamy amber that prevents it from straying into cloying territory. The lavender has also progressed from crisp and medicinal to caramellic, although still with a slight herbaceous spiciness, balancing the sweetness of the vanilla. Many compare this perfume to Guerlain's decadent Jicky, which has a wonderfully raunchy animalic nature that Pour Un Homme does not, but even so there is just enough musk and a spiciness to the lavender here that I am reminded of warm and slightly fuzzy skin. Whilst Jicky makes me want to nuzzle into it, Pour Un Homme is cuddly and inviting.

Twelve hours later and the perfume is still going, but right up against my skin. Go in close for a smell and you are rewarded with a wonderfully warm and comforting scent. This is the type of perfume you reach for when it is raining outside and you want to snuggle up indoors with a good book. Oh, and ignore the name, this would smell downright fantastic on a woman. 


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