The Scented Hound

Perfume blog with abbreviated perfume reviews & fragrance reviews.

New Release: Rrose Sélavy by Maria Candida Gentile


rrose_fla_fronteWHAT I SMELL:  Rrose Sélavy has a very herbal opening with a minted tarragon sitting on top of a vibrant deep and masculine rose.  I don’t want to say that the opening is discordant, but its incredibly different and unique in a way that makes you to wonder where this perfume path is going to lead you.   After a few minutes, a mentholated and camphorous warmth helps to give the perfume a pulsating heart.  Here the perfume feels beautifully earthy as if there’s a great story that accompanies the wearer of the fragrance.  The perfume is deep, warm, slightly spicy and completely herbal and a little goes a long way as the projection is quite big, but it still manages to remain down to earth.  Even though this is a rose perfume, there’s something so darkly mysterious and beautiful about it that belies my vision of a rose.  In the end, Rrose Sélavy quiets considerably, leaving you with a faint wisp of a creamy rose that feels as if it’s holding a secret.

From the Maria Candida Gentile website:

A Velvet rose, persistent and unique, dedicated to one of the leading artist of Dadaism: a homage to Marcel Duchamp and to his “double” Rrose Sélavy.

 Rrose Sélavy

Rrose Sélavy

With Rrose Sélavy Maria Candida interprets the “double” of Marcel Duchamp, and his jeux des mots Rrose Sélavy which sounds in French like “eros, c’est la vie”, or “arroser la vie”, to make a toast to life. Maria Candida pays tribute to Duchamp, making a toast to life with her velvet, soft, fresh, just harvested, with its olfactory vibration, which fill the air and the space, tridimensional just like his art crafts. The name Sélavy emerged in 1921 in a series of photographs by Man Ray of Duchamp dressed as a woman. Through the 1920s, Man Ray and Duchamp collaborated on more photos of Sélavy. Duchamp later used the name as the byline on written material and signed several creations with it.

Notes:  Rose petals, Turkish rose, May rose , Rose accord, Michelle rose, Rose stems, Rose leaves

Victorian ParlorWHAT IT SMELLS LIKE TO ME:  A Victorian parlor, full of the non-air conditioned worn wood, rugs, upholstery and books – it’s earthy, natural and comforting.

THREE WORDS THAT DESCRIBE RROSE SÉLAVY:  herbal, mentholated, meditative


BOTTOM LINE:  As I have said in the past, Maria Candida Gentile’s perfumes have a very MCG distinct fingerprint that is all hers.  Rrose Sélavy is no exception.  I find that you either really love her perfumes or you don’t and that there’s not a lot of in between.  I really like her creations, they’re bold, different and incredibly unique and to me, this take on rose is wonderfully unexpected.  Rrose Sélavy is a masculine perfume that melds to the feminine in the end and it perfectly fits the inspiration; the alter ego of Marcel Duchamp, Rrose Sélavy.

  • Bone Rating:  4 out of possible 5 bones
  • Scent:  Floral
  • Nose: Maria Candida Gentile
  • Classification: Unisex
  • Expense: $195 for 100 ml or $49 for 15 ml Parfum Extrait

Sample courtesy of Twisted Lily Fragrance Boutique and Apothecary.  Opinion my own.

Author: The Scented Hound

Just a normal guy with the nose of a beagle!

8 thoughts on “New Release: Rrose Sélavy by Maria Candida Gentile

  1. Most interesting! MCG does all sorts of machinations with rose notes. My fave is Cinabre, a spicy deep rose. I have a small bottle and enjoy it immensely but it is so strong I’m hesitant to wear it outside my house. Not sure about this one. I don’t like camphor or menthol notes. They remind me of paregoric- a dreadful tasting medication that used to be given for major upset stomachs before the invention of Phenergan (not sure of spelling). Anyway, I may test this one, not sure. Great description, though and very nice background information. Thanks!


    • Ricky – I’m not quite sure what paregoric tastes like, but to me mentholated is more Vick’s vapor rub which to me is kind of comforting. LOL. I guess we all have our memories from childhood that help to shape our smell memory.


  2. Well. This sounds interesting, although I don’t know if it would appeal to me. Tarragon always conjures up some weird discomfort in my subconscious that I have not yet accessed. Perhaps a recipe gone awry?Mentholated, camphorous and warm = Tiger Balm. Plus a masculine rose? Does. Not. Compute. But actually, I enjoy being confounded. Plus any library works for me.Thanks for the review. 🙂


    • Holly, this is really a different perfume. I was having a hard time putting the words into place so it does come out sounding a bit off, but it’s very hard to describe, because even though it’s a rose, I found it to be more herbal than anything else.


  3. Based on your description, I can’t see myself liking this one – I don’t tend to love the heavily mentholated or camphorous scents. At least not yet. But reading your review did make me think about the fact that I’ve never tried ANYTHING from Maria Candida Gentile, and I’m not particularly drawn to the house. I’m not sure if it’s the name, or the bottles, or just lack of exposure. Perhaps someday I should try something!


    • Sun Mi – I know how some perfume houses don’t call to us. I have a few of those as well that shall remain nameless. MPG’s are an acquired taste. Next time that we have a swap party though I’ll bring some samples and you can see if are on board or not. Rrose Selavy is mentholated, but not so much that it’s overpowering.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Loved your description so much I bought a bottle, and it’s amazing! Difficult and compelling at the same time. Wow! I teach a course on Dada and Surrealusm, so wanted to have this scent in my collection to share with students. Nice that in addition to a smart conceptual work, it also smells smart and quite startling.


    • Debra – I’m glad my posting helped pique in interest in the perfume, but don’t tell your wallet that I’m to blame. Based on what you teach this does sound like the perfect perfume for you. It is incredibly different, masculine, herbal and just plain incredible. Glad you like your purchase! xoxox


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