Tuesday, August 24, 2010

SOTD: Serge Lutens A La Nuit, and the waxing/waning model

Remember those voles?

My fragrance cravings have been changing for several days. Bottles that were hidden behind the green- or tea-focused summer scents have been coming out, and some of those summer scents have lost their appeal. This makes me think about the day length thing again. Days are getting shorter now, and I wonder if that's why my taste preferences are very different from my preferences in late June, when it was just as hot as it is now.

In mid-July, A La Nuit was perfect - I wanted more more more. Today, it was still pleasant, but just barely pleasant - it was on the edge between "Mmmm, jasmine immersion..." and "Help! I'm drowning!"

And in June, I couldn't imagine wearing Cadjmere as a comfort scent, and I wore Tubereuse Couture instead. But yesterday, Cadjmere was perfect, and I couldn't imagine wearing Tubereuse Couture at all, much less perceiving it as a comfort scent. I loved Cuir de Lancome in February, and loved it again on Sunday. I suspect that the thought of wearing it in June or early July would have been horrifying.

And was Osmanthe Yunnan unexciting recently because I missed the window of time when it was hot and days were growing longer? Would it have been magnificent in early June?

So the theory is that my scent preferences are determined by hot or cold weather in combination with the current day length trend - and that the day length may be the greater factor.  So "hot" or "cold" give way to more complicated designations like "hot waning", for hot weather when the day length is shortening, like now, or "cold waxing", for cold weather when the days are getting longer, like February or March.

Did I mention that I'm a geek? Can you tell that I'm thinking of making charts?

I also wonder about the definition of day length.  Is it strictly the number of hours of daylight, as if I were an onion or a flower bulb, or is it about the earliest sunrise or the latest sunset? If I got blackout curtains in the bedroom so that sunrise became irrelevant for another couple of months, would my fragrance taste suddenly shift?

Questions, questions.

Review Roundup for A La Nuit: Is here.


  1. Love this post!

    Nice to know I'm not Lone Geek.

  2. I definitely like different perfumes based on weather and time of year. But i don't think it's a length of day thing, more of a getting-colder or getting-hotter thing. Like right now, a 60 degree morning is "getting cooler" for me and I want a woody or leather scent. But in the spring, 60 degrees is "getting-hotter" and I want to break out the florals.

  3. The window for enjoying Osmanthe Yunnan seems as subliminally short as the one for enjoying a banana.

    When you plot the day length data on your charts, you may wish to do a separate set for the Scandiwegians...

  4. Hey, Josephine! I suspect that there are a whole lot of geeks in perfume-obsessed circles. :)

    Hiya, k! I thought that, too, but on the day that I wrote this, the temperature was hovering around 100, and I wanted very different things from the last time, earlier in the summer, that the temperature was hovering around 100.

    Yo, flittersniffer! Osmanthe Yunnan remains a puzzle. I want to love it again!

    Hmmm, yes, I was looking at charts of sunrise, sunset, etc., etc., for different regions, and debating what to chart.