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Don't get me wrong, I love Vivienne Westwood, I really do, but lately I've found her to be a bit contrary. Take her fragrance 'Let it Rock': lovely as it is, it's more rocking chair than rock'n'roll. Vivienne Westwood has a tendency to name the beauty products under her brand the very opposite of what they represent. Or else the combination of Viv plus the product name conjures an image you'd prefer not to have stuck in your mind: I love her fragrance 'Boudoir' but in my imagination Dame V's own boudoir is a cross between a squat and the cramped digs of a 1940s vamp who hangs her wet nylons over the bed to dry.
Vivienne Westwood's 'Naughty Alice Irresistible Bath Gel' follows the well trodden path of other VW products. For a start it's not irresistible; I mean, it's nice, very nice, but I'm pretty sure I can not only leave it unused for a day or two on the side of the bath, but exist without it too.
'Naughty Alice' is the name of another Vivienne Westwood fragrance and this bath gel is part of the range that accompanies it. I found this blurb on the House of Fraser website, which I believe is the marketing message from the House of Viv:
"A sensual and audacious new fragrance inspired by Vivienne Westwood`s playful and highly creative imaginary universe. Sexy, musky yet comforting, Naughty Alice enlivens the senses and is the perfect example of modern femininity."
The Fragrance Direct website adds:
"This chic feminine and provocative new floriental perfume leaves you with a naughty twinkle in the eye. Naughty Alice was developed by perfumer Bruno Jovanovic; the notes include black rose, carnal violet and ylang ylang."
This beautifully fragranced gel certainly is musky and, I'll concede, quite sensual. There's an element of spice behind the powdery florals and for a shower gel it really does have quite a complex blend of notes. The issue for me is that I just don't find it remotely 'Naughty'. It's actually quite demure, hinting vaguely at a possibility of naughtiness but not going as far as outright misbehaving.
It comes in a 150ml flip cap tube in a pale blue, decorated with the image of an ornate mirror or picture frame with rococo style tendrils. This is a boxed product which has the same frame depicted on the packaging and the inside of the box has a printed design of the instantly recognisable Vivienne Westwood logo. I think that someone who likes designer toiletries would be happy enough to receive this as a gift based on the packaging as it is obviously Vivienne Westwood and would look fun on display in a bathroom.
It's called a 'bath gel' but obviously you can use it in the shower, as I always do, or in the bath. It lathers nicely but not excessively and you need not use a huge amount which is good because this is not (usually) a cheap product. While the blurb makes no claims about the moisturising power of this bath gel, I actually find it leaves my skin feeling very soft and it feels very luxurious to use. After showering the fragrance lingers on my skin for a couple of hours and I must admit to enjoying the occasional surreptitious (or at least I believe so) sniff of my arms during the morning because this gel leaves a lovely gentle, powdery scent.
I snapped up a bargain and paid only about £4 for this from an online perfume retailer (Fragrance Direct) which was offering it on a time limited promotion (which has now since ended). House of Fraser currently sells this for £15.41 (reduced from an eye watering £23) but savvy shoppers will head to the Fragrance Direct website where it can be had for just £6.95.
As much as I like this bath gel I'm not in the habit of spending seven quid on shower products for myself so I'll enjoy using this until the very last drop but I probably won't buy it again. I would however probably buy it as a gift and I know a few of my girlfriends would love this.
Ok, so it contains a list of ingredients as long as your arm (including bizarrely two colourants in what is a clear gel) among them some of the more controversial ingredients currently, but I like it a lot. Naughty it isn't, but very nice it is.