Tome I - La Pureté for Him by Zadig & Voltaire (2012)

Nose: Nathalie Lorson

And another total winner in Nathalie Lorson’s book. First of all, although I usually couldn’t care less of packagings and bottles, I must start by saying that La Pureté’s book-like presentation box is stunning, and so is the bottle with its sturdy, concrete-like matte grey texture. Well-crafted, consistent and visually pleasant – the price I paid (at Sephora’s) wouldn’t even cover the cost of the packaging alone. All revolves around grey, white and black, and in a way so does the fragrance. This is a true little gem for me, which I would dare to place if not next, then “almost” close to post-modern classics like Gucci Rush Men, which La Pureté reminds me a bit to some aspects in fact – mostly for the same transparent and plushy sandalwood notes, and overall the same solid and compelling use of synthetic-clean notes.

There is mostly orange blossoms here, providing a really peculiar sort of “empty” and abstract floral-citrus-spicy breeze; then musky violet (with a really interesting sort of “wet concrete” feel as in Narciso for Him), hyper-clean mellow woods ranging from a milky sandalwood note to a deceptively “generic” cedar note, and a subtle and darker note which I get in many scents by Lorson – a sort of really thin dark, slightly coffee-infused wood with a really smooth-hard texture, vaguely smoky too (I get the exact same nuance in Trussardi Inside Man, Encre Noire and Paul Smith Man). And a subtle, and again “empty” aroma of almonds, which isn’t prominent for me though. All works just perfectly: there’s harmony, quiet richness, youthful elegance. The result is an immensely enjoyable fragrance conveying an overall sense of sweet whiteness and pale cleanliness well contrasted by some subtler nuances of not-so-common floral-spicy and even earthy notes (I think I even get something similar to raw, earth-dusted muguet). The name fits the scent perfectly, as the feel is in fact of something really “pure” – a futuristic, aseptic but at the same time, soothing and comforting (almost medicinal) kind of pureness. So unisex and out of time it could smell refined on anyone – men, women, teenagers, children, robots. Fantastic to wear, maybe a bit linear – but it’s so good! - and ridicolously persistent. A compelling creative take on a trite theme.


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