This post was originally titled The Difference Between Perfume and PERFUME. How obscure, right? It won’t surprise any longtime readers to learn that I often find myself puzzled at the words coming out of my mouth even as I speak them. At which point it is (of course) too late to take them back.
Thank god for pictures. Look! Picture!
First of all, I’d like to thank the ever-generous Cat of Strawberry Mochi for sending me a wealth of Diptyque samples. While I’m still working my way through the pile, I knew upon first spritz that I had to write a feature on Philosykos.
I’ve been trying to make my precious vial last as long as possible, and am seriously considering investing in the $120 EDT when I run out (hi, I’m a broke college student who makes less than your average babysitter, but who cares about the technicalities with a scent this gorgeous?). It’s my first introduction to fig fragrances, which unsurprisingly, smell like figs. If you’ve never encountered a fresh fig, I wouldn’t begin to know how to go about describing their aroma, except to say they smell nothing like Fig Newtons. Let’s just make that clear right now.
While Philosykos centers around the fig note, it’s more complex than whatever it is you would call the fruit version of a soliflore. Fruitiflore? Shall I just stop while I’m ahead? As Diptyque puts it, it’s “an ode to the entire tree: the green, pungent freshness of the leaves, the wood warmed in the sun, the milky flavor of the fruit.” And I get all three of those elements when I wear this fragrance, although the first two are much more fleeting than the third, which has the tendency to last for an incredibly long time.
I especially love spritzing this on my pajamas on rainy nights, and drifting off to the scent of wet dirt and new leaves as I hear water bouncing off my windows and gushing down the streets. Sometimes, if I stay up long enough, I smell the overwhelming milkiness of ripe figs as I drift off, and wake up with the warm, sweet dry-down of Philosykos still clinging to my clothes. There’s nothing quite like falling asleep to a complex perfume, listening to an entire story through scent as you slowly slip into your dreams. In fact, it’s better than any bedtime story because scent is so pervasive, so overwhelming in its experience.
Oh, and can we talk about dreams for a second here? Because I find them fascinating. When I was younger, flying and falling were recurring themes in my dream. Since high school, the theme has become people trying to kill me. During a particularly low period sophomore year, I dreamed that a man walked into my house and chased me in circles with what I thought was a leaf-blower, but turned out to be a very hot blowtorch. My friend, who likes to analyze my dreams, told me that he symbolized Precalculus (so I guess the blowtorch was like, Promethean fire or something?) and I was running from my fear of math. Which apparently I thought was going to end up killing me.
Oh look, more pictures…
Have you sniffed Philosykos or any other fig fragrances? What’s your favorite Diptyque perfume? Do you experience recurring themes in your dreams? Would anyone like to offer an alternate interpretation of my man-with-blowtorch dream? Bonus points if you can find a positive message in there.