This review is going to change up my usual format a little bit, partially because I am afraid it is turning into a shtick, and I hate shticks, and partially because sometimes you just want to shut up and enjoy something. It has a memory associated with it, but it’s a short visceral one. In 2005 I took my first cruise, something I’d wanted to do my whole life. When the ship finally left the dock, I was up on the pool deck with a pina colada in hand. It was a beautiful sunny summer afternoon with a cool breeze, and as we sailed through New York Harbor past the Statue of Liberty I got a huge head rush of pure joy.
That’s what Sarah Horowitz’s Perfect Coconut Milk fragrance does for me. When I wear it, it just warms me up from the inside out until I feel like I’m lying on the beach feeling content, not a care in the world except which favorite spot will we go to for dinner. Or like one of the feral kittens who live in the Colosseum in Rome, sustaining themselves on gelato that tourists drop.
Coconut is often maligned in the perfume world as “smelling like sun tan lotion,” but as a girl who would follow summer around the globe if she could, I can’t imagine how that could be a bad thing. My problem with it is that it almost always goes Yankee candle on me, meaning that it turns cloying and waxy. Until I received a sample of this in the July Olfactif subscription, I hadn’t found a wearable coconut. It is a tribute as to just how lovely this is that within half an hour of spraying it I knew I had to get a full bottle, and it only gets better over time.
Perfect Coconut Milk starts out as a sweet macaroon-like scent, which makes sense given that the top notes are almond and coconut, according to this dead-on Fragrantica review. It also has something green and bitter poking through that probably would bother me if it stayed around, but makes a nice contrast in the opening and fades within fifteen minutes.
Mid-notes are listed as orange blossom and gardenia. I can smell the orange blossom if I squint, and I don’t know what gardenia smells like, but at mid-point this fragrance is a delicious, fresh, natural-smelling pina colada. It is never overly sweet, and never artificial or cloying.
If this were all it was, I would still love it and would still have bought a full bottle, but the dry down is quite literally mouth-watering. The coconut and almond stay present but mix with vanilla, tonka bean, and Egyptian musk. It turns into a warm, slightly buttery, sexy skin scent that completely drives me nuts. I have been wearing this fragrance more or less continuously for the past twelve days, which is a record for me since I have started this blog. I could imagine wearing it every single day for the rest of the summer and not wanting to wear anything else.
Perfect Coconut Milk is that good. Cool but warm, simple but sophisticated. Longevity is excellent and sillage is arms-length.
Perfect Coconut Milk is available from Sarah Horowitz’s own site in multiple formats and sizes, and also from Beauty Habit and B-Glowing. The latter two sites ship worldwide. Cost is $75 for the 30 ml edp, which is what I based this review on from a bottle in my own collection. I have no material connection to any of the sites or companies listed above.
Perfect Coconut Oil also comes in body products and pure perfume oil. My friend Ida who wrote the review above prefers the perfume oil. I have not tried it yet but if it is better than the edp it’s going to have to be classified as a dangerous substance. Now please excuse me while I go lie down and purr.