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Group: Fruity Floral
~ Introduction ~
Lanvin, the oldest fashion house in Paris, was founded by a young milliner, Jeanne Lanvin, in 1889 and has remained the embodiment of French elegance throughout the first half of the century and beyond. Best known for their historical perfume 'Arpege' (1927) by the end of the century the empire seem to have retreated into the world of exclusivity. So I was intrigued to find a new, modern version of 'Arpege' in perfume discounter chain 'Beauty Base' in Ealing Broadway, London. What I discovered was, a ray of sparkling light in the middle of the winter gloom.
~ The packaging ~
The fragrance is housed in a lilac-tinted transparent plastic container which hints at Eclat's luxurious and precious nature. The chunky, signature round bottle itself evokes its predecessor 'Arpege' featuring the iconic gilded company logo 'Mother and daughter' created after the founder Jeanne Lanvin and her daughter. The bottle itself is clear glass, it is the perfume that's a light lilac in colour. The simply cut, perfect sphere glass comes with a metallic silver atomizer that has a golden coil attached to its neck that serves as a stopper.
~ The Fragrance ~
Top notes: lemon leaves, green lilac
True to its name (éclat means burst or sparkle) the sheer, clean, sparkling and fruity Éclat reminds me of a cross between Bvlgari Amethyst and Ghost Sheer Summer immediately after application. The fragrance fuses a gentle but fresh floral note like lightly scented linen or soft cotton with a distinct fresh apple aroma. This initial note develops further into a delicately creamy powdery veil of lilac more and more reminiscent of the lilac of Amethyst. What clearly distinguishes the two is that Éclat has a surprisingly sparkling head, a mist that radiates from the skin and isn't clinging to it.
When I wore it in winter, it felt joyfully summery and fresh and had a more uniform, warmer veil of baked apple infused with a creamy green tea aroma. In summer, it feels more citrusy and floral like the smell of propolis nectar, only subtly though so it never becomes syrupy or cloying.
Middle notes: wisteria blossom, green tea, peach blossom, red peony, Chinese osmanthus
After the top notes have dies down the fragrance turns more floral and creamier but is still showing its very fruity, almost edible distinct lilac-apple scent which mingles with white flowers and the rosy aroma of peony. The crispiness of Eclat softens slightly after an hour when the lilac and peony floral notes take over. In winter this phase takes slightly longer and even after two hours the fragrance still has a fresh, summery quality while retaining its creaminess throughout. In cold weather, Éclat reminds me a mixture of sweet smelling apple sorbet, peach and bitter orange.
Base notes: cedarwood, musk, amber
After 3 - 4 hours I start getting the unmistakeable musky base which sits on a wafer thin layer of woods and amber. Despite the relatively heavy components of the dry down, Eclat still feels light and brightly fresh though a bit on the faded side. The impression is of a clean and unspoilable residue that doesn't go 'old' or heavy on the skin. Interestingly, this residue doesn't end up smelling of nothing in particular and this is due to the hint of creamy florals from the middle notes that linger on with the musky woods. As the floral sweetness finally turns characteristically musky and woody the last notes of Éclat are light, powdery and refined.
This gently spiced, ambery and mellowed scent then stays on till the evening especially on the clothes that had contact with the skin. The skin-flavoured musk and warm amber give out out a radiant, slightly woody and subtly sensual aroma.
~ Conclusion ~
The only criticism I have for Eclat is its staying power. In warm weather the sparkling floral middle notes tend to evaporate in a mere 3-4 hours though the delicate base notes still linger on throughout the day. What's left is a subtle residue on the skin which is only noticeable closely to the wearer.
Éclat is a unique, fresh, sweet, ageless and delicate fragrance that reminds me of the subtle and slightly green scent of wild flower blossoms in the early morning dew rather than a meadow in full bloom. The well-blended and unspoilable fresh top notes have a nuance making Éclat a one of a kind of a complex, rich but light summer fragrance that's just as delicious all year round.
To sum up, it is a sheer, feminine scent with seemingly effortless elegance and stunning balance.
~ Price / Where to buy ~
This Eau de Parfum has now been discontinued in most shops. It's still available at perfume discounter Beauty Base (Ealing Broadway, London) £30 / 100ml Eau de Parfum. The original retail price was £58 / 100ml Eau de Parfum.
I bought mine which is a 100ml Tester from Ebay for £15 + postage and it's also available from online perfume stores.
~ Additional Rating ~
Originality: 5 / 5
Composition: 4 / 5
Staying power: 3 / 5
Value for money: 4 / 5
Thanks for reading my review. Also on Ciao! UK
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A delicate, fruit-tinged floral fragrance with top notes of Sicilian lemon leaves and green lilac; middle notes of wisteria blossom, green tea leaves, peach blossom, red peony and Osmanthus and base notes of white cedar, sweet musks and amber /