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All of the Tom Ford fragrances are absolutely stunning, every one I have tried has been exciting and different, not one is ordinary or boring. You could purchase the entire 'private blend' collection and wear nothing but them and find no overlapping fragrances.
This blend, tobacco vanille is rumoured to be Tom Ford's fragrance of choice, and it is also mine.
It's a scent that has real complexity, it needs to be smelt to be appreciated because a man might resent smelling of vanilla, and a woman might be repulsed by the idea of tobacco- but together they work harmoniously to create brilliance on either male or female skin.
It is definitely a winter fragrance, in summer the heat can make it quite sickly and it can feel uncomfortable for the wearer as being an eau de parfum rather than EDT means it's pungent stuff, and being oil based in lasts a long time, and requires very little to be applied to the skin.
Being EDP means it's not as expensive as it first looks, ok of course it's still incredibly expensive, but use around 1/3 to 1/4 of the amount you'd use in an EDT.
The 50ml bottles are a triumph of classy, understated elegence, I love them. The 100ml bottles are equally gorgeous and expensive looking and the 250ml bottles are decanters, so if you buy big to save money, or to split with friends make sure you have some empty spray bottles for it.
The Tom Ford perfumes are designed to be worn layered, but this is such a striking scent it would be damaging to mix it with anything else.
The scent opens with deep tobacco, slowly fading to allow the scene of vanilla to come in. It lasts for hours and hours and can go a full day without a top up, impressive.
The Tom Ford private belnds are clearly Tom Ford having a great time creating an uncompromising product, you have to pay for the priviledge (£125 for 50ml or £180 for 100ml) but it's well worth it.
Group: Oriental spicy
It's winter time and I'm naturally gravitating towards warm and spicy oriental scents. I also have a growing passion about niche fragrances - sources of quality raw materials and also meant to be olfactive artistic expressions - so I took the plunge and bought a 5ml sample size of it on eBay.
Ford's niche line is called Private Blend and is composed of unisex numbers that can be worn alone or layered with other scents in the collection. The fragrances are mostly named after the raw materi-als they are based on. The full size 50ml and 100ml editions are black, rectangular bottles with a heavy, rectangular cap. Complete with a golden emblazonment, the collection has an exclusive, ex-pensive look to it.
Top notes: tobacco leaf
The top opens up with powerful bursts of a rich, boozy and aromatic cherry pipe tobacco accord which feels very natural, not too sweet or made-up. It has a combination of spices, cherry, honey and hay to my nose that adds some depth and mature feel to the composition. These first notes are quite long-lasting and linger on for about ½ hour to an hour or so.
Heart notes: tonka bean, tobacco flower, vanilla, cocoa bean
The cherry and tobacco hay are the most dominant notes I get from the fragrance until it's starting to blend in with the slightly sweeter and more powdery heart mainly composed of vanilla. The result, that lasts for hours and hours, is a deep, dark, syrupy but not too sweet, spicy vanilla that is to die for. Even better than in Un bois vanille which I find a tad too sweet to my taste. The heart is topped off by the fruity - spicy element to make it truly delicious and stop it from becoming too sweet.
About 3 - 4 hours later I'm getting a cocoa note, a sort of unsweetened, powdery chocolate accord, that's very natural smelling. It blends in nicely with the dark, naturally sweet vanilla and a dash of spicy, woody tobacco. Despite the soft, rounded ingredients used there's plenty of sillage. Especially when I'm moving when the ingredients start swirling too and create a truly dynamic, multi-faceted accord that stays on for at least 6 - 8 hours.
Base notes: dried fruit, sweet wood sap
The dry down has gone quite soft by now but it doesn't stop it from evolving. Besides the remain-ing vanilla - cocoa combo I'm also getting a distinct coumarin note - found in tonka beans now produced synthetically - that I can describe as aromatic, sweet, hay-like and woody and in some ways similar to the aroma of raw tobacco strips. Indeed, it complements the soft tobacco I still detect on my skin. The base notes will last up to 10 - 12 hours.
Tobacco Vanille is a lovely, natural smelling vanilla blend that's made special by the delicious fruity-woody-aromatic addition of tobacco. Despite the powerful aromatic and spicy ingredients, the fragrance is never harsh, overwhelming or aggressive and in fact can be rather on the soft side. It oozes sophistication as well as casualness which is not at all contradictory here but rather natural. Easy to wear while extremely worked-on - signature of great attention to detail - a niche attribute I prize so much.
I simply cannot justify buying a full-sized bottle of this beautiful creation, however, I tried recreat-ing it by mixing Joop! Le Bain for its cherry-pipe-tobacco note with Serge Lutens' Un bois vanille, a deep, sweet, aromatic almost vanilla solinote fragrance. Le Bain has a darker, woodier cherry pipe tobacco accord and has less of the sweet, aromatic vanilla. The two combined turns out a tad sharper and thinner and somewhat lacks the extreme softness and roundness of Tobacco Vanille but it's pretty close. And most importantly, it's on the budget side.
I recommend it as a generous gift or if you have the budge to spoil yourself with one of the world' best modern interpretation of cherry-pipe-tobacco vanilla. I took off one star for the price. Bar that, simply divine.
PRICE AND AVAILABILITY
Tom Ford Private Blend: Tobacco Vanille can be bought in most department stores for £125 / 50ml £180 / 100ml EDP. Ouch! A 5ml sample size can be bid up to £10 plus postage.
Thanks for reading.
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