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Jicky - Thank you for waiting

Image - Guerlain store, 68 Champs Elysée, Paris

My collection of fragrances is big – I’m not even sure how many I own (I stopped counting because I started feeling guilty!).  I love all my perfumes, but the fact is, I love some more than others, so several bottles got pushed to the back of the big dresser drawers where I store them, not touched for months, or even a couple of years. Last week I took several of these poor, forsaken bottles out to say hello, get reacquainted, and give them a spritz – just for old times’ sake.

Jicky was one of these bottles. This Guerlain classic, the oldest perfume still living, breathing, and selling in the perfume world, was introduced in 1889, and is recognized as the first “modern’ fragrance, because of its complex, pyramid structure – top, middle, base - and because it was a universal, or “unisex” scent, loved and worn by both men and women still, to this day.

I bought it in winter, and wore it for a couple of months. I admired it, and loved it, but it wasn’t a passionate connection. To me, Jicky was one of those scents which is kind of abstract – it didn’t tell a story, or trigger poignant memories and images like some perfumes do for me. It was more a feeling or mood, a state of being, and there was something about it that was missing for me – like the missing piece in a jigsaw puzzle. I could see the picture, but it wasn’t complete.

I held the clear glass bottle of Eau de Parfum in my hand, and gave myself three good spritzes............

Jicky opens with a cool citrus blast, lots of orange and lemon, on a bed of lavender blooms. Right away I detect an odd undertone which fades as the scent sweetens with creamy vanilla. The vanilla swirls under the top notes, and I smell luscious lemon meringue pie…mmmmm. Then that odd smell again – the scent that many describe as skanky – which I can identify as civet. I smell it as warm sexy skin, not skank, and it mixes with the floral heart notes seductively.

The drydown is warmed and sweetened by amber and a hint of smoky incense, but I can still intermittently smell the lemon and lavender doing a tango in an herb garden in the background, and the civet rolling around under a chamois blanket. The notes weave in and out, revealing themselves at different times, and in different combinations, making the scent incredibly interesting as it unfolds.

I’ve been wearing Jicky all this week, in this hot humid sticky mind-bending summer weather, and I’ve gotten to know the real Jicky. I now see it in living colour, instead of black and white, I found the missing piece to the puzzle, and I understand why it is considered a masterpiece. Jicky needed to be on my warm sweaty skin, in hot summer air, for me to learn its secrets. Who knew?

Jicky transformed from a cool, reserved, humourless fragrance, which always smelled slightly sour or “off” to me, into a bright and playful, sweet but naughty, seductive but classy scent – above all, completely whole and three-dimensional.

I’ve learned something from my forgotten bottles in the back of the drawer. I discovered that there are some fragrances that are just not true love at first sniff. Not because they are so difficult or weird, but because you are not ready for them - to hear their story, or appreciate their art. Some fragrances must wait for you.

Jicky is one of those fragrances. I’m so glad it waited for me, quietly, in the back of the drawer. I’ve fallen hard, and now I’m truly, deeply in love with Jicky – FOREVER.
 

Jicky is listed in our Decant Store. Decants are $4.00 for 1 ml.