“ Brand: Paloma Picasso / Type: Fragrance / Concentration: Eau de Parfum „
Group: Oriental floral
I first bought this fragrance at the flea market a long time ago and since have found out that it's a rare collector's item. Unlike Paloma Picasso's signature fragrance 'Paloma Picasso', Tentations has been discontinued around 2007. The aim of my review is therefore to provide an olfactory profile and help collectors and perfumistas before making an investment of this rare gem.
The packaging recalls the creative design of the seventies or eighties and especially those opulent, spicy scents that were around that time. Designed by Paloma Picasso herself, the tall and slim cylindrical bottle is capped with a golden ball stopper and has a black wiring (print-only on miniature) on the neck, lending a rich oriental feel. The box is partly red showing a partially uncovered photo of the bottle.
Top notes: orange blossom, bergamot, peach, pepper, vodka
What a delight! Tentations is sweet, fresh and spicy straight after application, the kind of rich and layered sweetness that often high-end perfume houses have in common such as Guerlain or Chanel. The accord is definitely peachy, like a rich, peach cocktail and somewhat citric to my nose with a sweet, spicy addition that gets deeper and deeper as the minutes go by.
Heart notes: spices, carnation, cinnamon, orchid, jasmine, rose
Spices, spices and more spices join in and Tentations still stays sweet and smooth and is now a delicious cocktail of cinnamon, clove and peach with a sweet floral tone. Despite the spiciness, it never becomes dusty like Opium or sticky and cloying Trésor can get when oversprayed. It has just the right balance however it does get even sweeter with time.
About an hour later I start getting more of the floral elements, mainly carnation with its darker, clove-like note. The rest of the florals are so well blended that all I'm discerning is a sweet powdery feel possibly the orchid.
The overall result of the dusting of spices, the sweet powdery florals and a characteristic milky and creamy peach that appears halfway through and mingles with the spices is simply breathtaking. I cuddle up in this mist that projects discreetly but steadily for the next 6 - 7 hours and simply doesn't want it to end.
Base notes: labdanum, sandalwood, tonka bean, musk, benzoin, frankincense, cedarwood, myrrh
The base notes kick in with an ever increasing powderiness that recalls the softness and sweetness of vanilla and although it's not listed it's easy to see it from the double whammy tonka bean and benzoin both used as vanilla substitutes. Luckily Tentations also has an equally prominent darker and woodier facet thanks to the zing of woods, dark incense and a waft of spice to tone down the vancillic sweetness and keep it from too linear and powdery. The warm, powdery, elegant and oh so velvety soft and smooth trail lasts well past 9 - 10 hours. What a magnificent finish!
It's hard to find faults with an exceptional 'fume like Tentations apart from the 'clever' people who decided to take it off the market. The culprit is probably the fact that in the '90s everything fresh, watery, stripped down and synthetic were deemed as modern where sophisticated, complex and refined perfumes were no longer in fashion: Tentations has that old-school depth and softness that only some vintages have, something that even today's niche fragrances rarely manage to emulate:
The fragrance is a result of two major influences that it ultimately surpasses and creates something unique and unforgettable. Sweeter and less spice-heavy than Opium but has the same dusty spice note lurking in there. The other connection I find is with Trésor created 6 years earlier by the same nose, Sophia Grojsman. Tentations carries the same sweet and milky peach signature of Trésor. If you're a fan of carnation, spices and a smooth, oriental base and like old school orientals with a fresh and intriguing twist then Tentations is your thing.
To sum up, an extremely smooth, refined and soft lactonic peach, spicy carnation and woodsy melange blended to perfection that should be still in production.
PRICE AND AVAILABILITY
The bigger 30ml and 50ml Eau de Parfum sizes are rare but can still be found on ebay UK and US currently around the £45 - £60 mark / 50ml Eau de Parfum. Miniatures are more common ranging between £6 - £12 for [5ml Eau de Parfum.
©powdered by lillybee also posted on ciao.co.uk
Group: Oriental floral