WHAT I SMELL: Christopher Street opens with a fig like citrus that has this swirling effect on my skin. It also has this semi-petroleum like kick to it. Hmmm, in other words, it’s a like a ripened bag of oranges and lemons being kicked by a pair of Doc Martens. After a few minutes there’s a bit of sourness to that comes to surface. It’s salty and sweaty, like the mix of sweat and body odor from a hot day mixed with the coolness of the air conditioning when you step inside. It’s kind of repulsive, but there’s something rather natural about it which isn’t too off putting. But with all this sweat, you would think that the fragrance would run hot…but it doesn’t, it’s rather cool. After around 10 minutes, the soured orange remains, but the sweaty aspects start to dissipate as they’re replaced with an undercurrent of oakmoss and warmer hues of subtle spice. At this point the fragrance is almost split in two as it seems to have this top aura that sits like an orb on top of grounded spice. It’s odd in that the various layers of the fragrance seem to pull from the middle moving in opposite directions. After around an hour there is something remote about Christopher Street. It projects and has power for a citrus scent, but there is nothing soft there as it’s bold and rather removed. After a couple of hours, I get a slight appearance of leather, but just barely. For the most part I am left with this sour orange citrus sitting on a base of very dry oakmoss.
Christopher Street notes as well as the information on the fragrance’s namesake and inspiration from the Charenton Macerations website:
Top – Alcoholic Lime, Bergamot, Bitter Orange, Leather, Tobacco
Mid – Cinnamon, Clove Bud, “Dance on Skin,” Orange Blossom, Poet Carnation
Dry – Incense, Moss, Musk, Myrrh, Patchouli
New York City’s Christopher Street is one of the oldest and longest streets in the West Village. Designed as a diagonal road against a rectangular grid, Christopher Street has always been known for its subversive character. A street of merchants and misfits, along with the occasional mob front, Christopher Street has played home to a cast of unlikely heroes that has included everyone from Beatniks to Bohemians to homosexuals. The neighborhood is a spectrum of vibrant personalities that shatter traditional notions of gender.
Developing a long-standing reputation for celebrating individual freedom, Christopher Street is most notably known as the location of the 1969 Stonewall Riots. Over the years, its promises of hope have made it a chosen destination for those individuals moving to New York City in search of openness and acceptance. “The Shangri-La of the West Village.” All around the world, the name Christopher Street has become synonymous with the word “liberation.” Stemming from its rich history, its architecture, and its quintessential connections to New York City activism,Christopher Street was seen as the perfect inspiration for the first Charenton Macerations fragrance.
WHAT IT SMELLS LIKE TO ME: If I lift my wrist to my nose, I am inclined to get a headache. From afar the scent smells rather good. As such, it’s like there’s a party going on down the street, but there’s a fence that separates me from the fun!
THREE ADJECTIVES THAT DESCRIBE CHRISTOPHER STREET: sharp, raw, bold
WHAT OTHERS ARE SAYING ABOUT CHRISTOPHER STREET: EauMG, Bois de Jasmin, Indieperfumes
BOTTOM LINE: I really want to love this fragrance because the backstory and thought in its creation is just so wonderfully thought out and unique. However, my body chemistry doesn’t always mix well with orange blossom and that’s what I mostly get from this boldly different creation. I do look forward to what Charenton Macerations offers us next.
- Bone Rating: 3 out of 5 possible bones
- Scent: Leather
- Nose: Ralf Schwieger
- Classification: Unisex
- Expense: $100 for 1 oz. EdP from Charenton Macerations website
December 4, 2013 at 10:08 pm
LOL at the imagery and scent of a ripened bag of oranges and lemons being kicked by a pair of Doc Martens. I owned a pair of them but didn’t wear them much because they were so heavy! The perfume doesn’t sound appealing so money saved!
December 5, 2013 at 5:51 am
LOL…that is an odd visual isn’t it?! More money for you for Christmas then my dear!
December 4, 2013 at 11:26 pm
Bummer. But, I can see this one not working for some people. It is rather aggressive and persistent (which I think fits with the backstory). Some citruses just do not work for me either.
Hubs can’t wear this one either. He blames the moss. I blame his trigger happy way of applying things 😉
December 5, 2013 at 5:52 am
Well, this was VERY persistent for only 2 squirts. It’s a big one for sure. And yes, it does fit the backstory perfectly!
December 5, 2013 at 5:19 am
Awful, vile stuff. This was a scrubber on me. I’m giving you extra credit for sticking it out to the end. I had high hopes since Jordan seemed so intent on getting the samples but oh my, not good at all. How the notes on paper can look so good and yet smell so bad on me is amazing really. I smelled like a garbage truck. When hubby walked into the kitchen he went to take the trash out and when he saw it was empty asked what stunk. That would be me, dear. I’ve seen from other reviews that this one works for some people but I am not one of them.
December 5, 2013 at 5:55 am
Sorry your sweet Poodle hair didn’t mix with this one at all. Funny, at Sniffa, I spritzed this on and it seemed to really work well. However, as you know, there were so many things that we were covered in that it either was mixed with something else for a great combination or my nose was so fatigued that I couldn’t read good from bad. But this didn’t really work for me as well.. but I just thought it was me!!
December 5, 2013 at 6:25 am
Sounds to me like you were subjected to a Norlimbanol and Kephalis bomb……
December 5, 2013 at 6:24 am
Hm, sounds like it’s loaded with synthetics. A couple of them. First off, I suspect, ISO E Super. The “split in two” aspect and the remoteness, along with parts seeming to vanish, sound like the ISO E Super. The sourness, dryness, “leather” and semi-petroleum kick could be Norlimbanol, especially as this is classified as a leather fragrance with tobacco. You have said in the past that you don’t suffer from ISO E Super, but you did get an instant headache from this one, which underscores my suspicion that it’s Norlimbanol. It’s even stronger than ISO E Super, and has a piercing effect that instantly gives me a headache each time I sniff it up close.
Another guess, the perfume may not have ISO E Super, but have Kephalis, which is a tobacco-y synthetic which smells like ISO E Super and can explain the semi-petroleum kick. My guess, it has Norlimbanol and Kephalis, which are often put together for leather fragrances. (Witness the Noble Leather from YSL that I talked about lately and whose review you found scathing).
You know, I have quite an intense dislike for all of Ralf Schweiger’s work that I’ve tried thus far. They’re all synthetic bombs of varying degrees of unpleasantness. I’ve found a few to be complete scrubbers. I would bet anything that he went to town with the synthetics here as well, using the precise ones I’ve mentioned to create the “leather” impression, along with tobacco.
December 5, 2013 at 9:06 pm
OMG…you make it sound like I was wallowing in a toxic sewer cloud. Norlimbanol and Kaphalis sound like they should be components of some weapon of mass destruction. You are no doubt probably right which kind of scares me as I would like to think that I’m not putting such toxins on my skin! I think you have a budding career as a chemist my dear K!
December 5, 2013 at 11:05 pm
Well, at least now you finally understand my issue about synthetics, and have experienced what they always smell like to me! I have to admit, a big part of me is glad you finally know what I’m always blithering on about, and why. *grin* LOL 😉
December 6, 2013 at 5:07 am
December 6, 2013 at 4:15 am
I wonder if Bond NY would want to sue Charenton Macerations for using that street’s name 😉
Perfume doesn’t sound appealing but I got some laughs from reading the review so probably it’s good you had to suffer through testing it.
(love your holidays theme!)
December 6, 2013 at 5:10 am
Trust me, I have suffered through worse…e.g. Tauer Orange Star!
December 6, 2013 at 9:03 pm
I have never tried that one but having had bad experience with some of the others AT’s perfumes I can sympathize 😉
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