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I recently got a little tester or travel sized bottle of Yves Saint Laurent's Opium Eau de Parfum in a Christmas set. I don't know the price as this was a gift and also came with other items - so would be priced differently to what it usually is. It is a high end fragrance, so you're probably looking at £50+ for a standard bottle.
My miniature bottle is based on the design for the full sized version - a sleek and chic looking semi-rectangular bottle, with a round disc in the middle and a little gold top. The bottle is actually a lot more attractive than I'm making it sound here. Also, it's best feature is it's unique colour which id so very difficult to describe - it's kind of a dusky maroon with a hint of purple. Again, I'm probably selling it short - as do most photographs I've seen of it - it really is a lovely colour.
As I've said, the bottle is very chic, as is the scent - it's subtle (not overly noticeable but not undetectable either) and definitely gives a very sophisticated scent without seeming too dressy. It has a hint of musk, and a definite exoticism which is maybe sandalwood? It reminds me of sandalwood even if it isn't, but not in an overpowering way which you find with a lot of things with sandalwood in.
I absolutely love this scent - obviously all perfumes are subjective so I'd go to a good old fashioned perfume counter or try a tester size if I were you before investing in a standard sized bottle.
The only minus point shouldn't really go against the product itself but it's what bugs me - my mother in particular keeps telling me I smell like the 80s when I'm wearing it. It was OK the first couple of times, and it's not like it would stop me wearing it but...argh! It's annoying!
This is a first - a perfume review by Praskipark. The reason I haven't reviewed perfume before is because I never buy any. I am a skinflint when it comes to spending money on cosmetics and perfume. I have always been a Tom Boy and spend most of my life in wrinkled jeans and checked shirts but there are sometimes when I like to wear a pretty dress and do my hair up real nice. These are the times I like to smell sweet too. I haven't bought a bottle of perfume since I was 17 or 18 and probably only owned about 4 or 5 bottles since then, all purchased by my husband. I was amazed a few weeks ago when he walked in with a bottle of Opium by Yves Saint Laurent. He was worried in case I didn't like it, he couldn't remember the one I usually like, neither can I, it's so long since I last used any.
***Let's take a look at the bottle and packaging***
The box is rectangular in shape with a fold in lid. The card it is made from is of medium quality in a pale bronze colour with wispy leaves embossed in gold on the top. The word Opium is written in capital letters and also embossed in gold. Underneath the name Opium is the description of the kind of perfume (eau de toilette) in French and English, also the fluid weight, 1.6 fl. oz - 50ml. Underneath that is the famous name of Yves Saint Laurent. On the back there is a caution about the perfume being flammable, not to use near fire or spray in eyes. This is written in six different languages (French, English, German, Spanish, Italian, Dutch and Russian).
Opening the lid I can see the box is black inside so the gold top of the perfume bottle really shines out. The bottle itself is Art Deco in design with a slimline body that sits perfectly in the palm of your hand. The glass is slightly frosted, with a central, clear ellipse showing the product name and the name of Yves Sant Laurent. The perfume nozzle is set within a hemisphere mounted on to two concentric cylindrical parts. The action of the nozzle is light and the spray delivers a generous quantity of perfume as I've just found out, sat here, choking!
***Wafting away the spray - what does it smell like?***
Bear with me on this one, I'm not used to describing perfumes. Okay, here we go. On the first sniff I find the fragrance very strong and masculine. It reminds me of Aramis aftershave. There is a definite aroma of spice, cloves, mandarin, coriander (my favourite herb) and all things cosy and nice, a touch of Christmas about it. This is a lovely smell as it reminds me of when I first started dating my husband. He used to come up to Sheffield from London, stay the weekend and leave some of his jumpers behind. I would wear them to remind me of him and the smell that always lingered on the jumpers and even in the draw I placed them in, was of Aramis. The image inside my head after the first spray has dissipated is one of a floral garden with roses blooming, a touch of the Orient, maybe the delicate aroma of jasmine. There is also a fruity image, a peach tree, followed by those pretty flowers with delicate white bell shaped heads, lily of the valley, and before the image disappears I can just see a flicker of Christmas again with sticks of cinnamon. The solid scents of the perfume that give Opium its depth are cedar, sandalwood, patchouli and myrtle. These are wonderful scents and conjure allsorts of images in my head. My favourite one is where I am walking through a seasoned forest looking up at the cedar trees. I've had this perfume nearly a month now and I really like all the fragrances. It's playful, delicate and refreshing, all at the same time. I feel good when I am wearing it and it makes me feel sensuous, confident and happy.
***How long does the fragrance last?***
I knew I was going to review Opium today so yesterday I did a test. I gently sprayed a small amount on both of my wrists (on the inside) and behind both my ears at 9.30 am yesterday. I spent the morning with my grandchildren, dancing with Alicja and watching Alex wasn't putting his cushion in the microwave so I was on the go most of the morning. It's very warm in their flat so every now and again I kept getting whiffs of sandalwood, orange and spice, a really fresh and playful aroma. My granddaughter even said, 'What's that nice smell?' I let her sniff my wrists and she said, 'ooooohhh, that's nice Baba.' Even going home on the tram in the afternoon I could smell Opium on my scarf and it wasn't until about 10pm that the smell had nearly worn off so I think I have to give the perfume full marks for intensity.
Tangerine, plum, cloves, basil, coriander, pepper
Peach, iris, rose, pinks, lily of the valley, jasmine, cinnamon
Patchouli,cedar, sandalwood, labdanum (type of rock rose), myrtle and vetiver
***An interesting snippet I picked up from Wiki***
Opium was launched by Yves Saint Laurent in 1977. The name of the perfume wasn't received well by a large group of Chinese Americans because of Chinese history concerning the drug. The drug, Opium, made a lot of Chinese rich but also was the cause of a lot of deaths and misery. The famous fashion designer was accused of condoning drug use. Bad publicity didn't actually harm the sales of the perfume, it became a top seller.
My bottle of Opium was a gift from my husband. On the Boots website the price for this 50ml bottle is £53.50 and on Amazon.co.uk it is £47.99. You may be able to get it cheaper on ebay but usually perfume prices rocket at this time of year.
I think I have covered everything. Opium is a smashing perfume. I love all the scents involved in the composition, it's great to wear, I'm not allergic to it, I don't find it too overpowering and it makes me feel a million dollars when I am wearing it. Full marks from me and full marks from George, my husband. I seem to get more kisses when I'm wearing this. :-)
Discover the myth of Opium reinvented / A perfume of an outrageous and evocative name, Yves Saint Laurent Opium Eau De Parfum is a gate open on a fantasy world, a trip to the unknown, to an extraordinary elsewhere, mysterious, full of sensations and emotions / Back to the roots of Opium, the new aesthetic of the Eau De Parfum bottle refers to the original inre / It glorifies mystery, voluptuousness and modernity of the item / A fruity and aromatic opening, a flowery, voluptuous character, a rich and spicy oriental structure for this deep, intense and deliciously sensuous version /