WHAT I SMELL: Civet opens with a warmed spiced orange and bergamot which reminds me of clove filled orange pomanders that you see during the winter holidays. The warmth begins to lighten quickly as the perfume beams soft and pretty with a lovely and light tuberose coming to the center. But very quickly, the perfume becomes highly radiant and makes its presence known. After a bit, a soured citrus comes forward which then melds into a light civet. The perfume moves from a pretty floral luminosity to a slightly rebellious feel. Still pretty, there’s a light bite that gives the perfume a more interesting presence and depth. As it continuous to develop, a hay like flatness keeps the perfume grounded. At the same time, the projected radiance dissipates and the perfume dances around the floral heart, along with a musky and slightly urinous interplay with hints of coffee and leather. Civet is wonderfully complex, yet so smooth and easy to wear.
From the Zoologist Perfumes website:
Zoologist Civet pays homage to the age-old ingredient, civet, as well as chypre perfumes of bygone days – perfumes that refused to be intimidated by raw, alluring, animalistic musks. Civet is a moody and complex brew entwined in mystery. It opens with a spicy floral accord, threaded through with dark coffee tones. Slowly it prowls forward, unraveling base notes of leather, moss and vanilla that combines with distinctive civet musk to create a bewildering, sophisticated scent with the promise of a sultry nighttime rendezvous.
Top Notes: Bergamot, Black Pepper, Lemon, Orange, Spices, Tarragon
Heart Notes: Carnation, Frangipani, Heliotrope, Hyacinth, Linden-blossom, Tuberose, Ylang
Base Notes: Balsams, Civet, Coffee, Incense, Labdanum, Musks, Oakmoss, Resins, Russian Leather, Vanilla, Vetiver, Woods
WHAT IT SMELLS LIKE TO ME: Nancy Spungen of Sid and Nancy fame…a little pretty, a little dirty, a little punk.
THREE WORDS THAT DESCRIBE CIVET: careworn, enigmatic, nuanced
BOTTOM LINE: Perfumer Shelley Waddington has created a complex beauty that blends seamlessly to reveal many nuances throughout the wear. With the name Civet, I was worried that this would be a perfume would be rather funky. Instead, she added just the right amount of civet to enhance the subdued florals. Civet is a really lovely perfume.
- Bone Rating: 4 out of possible 5 bones
- Scent: Aromatic
- Nose: Shelley Waddington
- Classification: Unisex
- Expense: $125 for 60 ml eau de parfum