light's the enemy

Yesterday, when labelling more Rose chyprée in the factory, the sun broke through the clouds and brought the flacons to life. Today’s picture shows you this moment. This is a rare sight, as the flacons are stored all in boxes, hidden on the shelves, and do not see the light really. Neither do I see them. Light is actually a perfume’s biggest enemy.

Although, I think, not every scent is equally sensitive. I remember the one flacon of air du désert marocain, that was sitting in the window of a shop in bright daylight, for about 2, 3 years. When I noticed, I mentioned that the flacon should not be used as tester anymore, as the scent’s probably gone. We tested it, the shop owner and me, and, oh wonder!, the fragrance was still there, almost perfect. Just the citrus chord was a touch off, but really just a touch. So that was cool.

I remember another scent of mine, the last drops of my limited edition “orris”, now about 8 years since I presented it (without any plan to bring it back up to now). These last drops (think 100 ml) were always sitting in a closed but large aluminum can, with (unfortunately) quite some empty volume, air, and when I tested it about two years ago, it was off. Still recognizable, but definitively off.

So there you go: Perfume can turn bad, and eventually it will. In a sense, perfumes are alive. They change.

And they change also (slightly) from batch to batch, because what goes inside changes, especially naturals. As much as we all hate changes when it comes to our fragrances, in a sense I like the idea: perfumes as living matter.