Saturday, January 7, 2012

Mary Greenwell Plum

I feel pretty, oh so pretty!

Take a look at the Bouguereau painting, The Rapture of Psyche – the lemon yellow and pink-tinged dawn, the floaty plum chiffon, the angel and butterfly wings – it's a perfect depiction of true love overcoming reason. That's what Mary Greenwell's Plum smells like.

More prosaically, Plum starts off with sweet-tart fruits, like peach, plum and lemon. The heart is a bouquet of feminine flowers. I smell mostly tuberose and gardenia but very smoothly blended and with none of the cheesy, mushroom or menthol-petrol notes. The base notes are subtle and woody with maybe a hint of moss, but not really enough to make it a vintage-style chypre. The next day the ghosts of sandalwood and amber still haunt my skin.

Plum is the debut perfume for Mary Greenwell, a make-up artist to the stars. The nose, Francois Robert has done a few perfumes, mostly for the niche line Les Parfums de Rosine, but seems to be known mainly for re-working Lanvin's Arpege. For a while, Plum was carried exclusively by House of Fraser in the UK, but you can get it online now from Luckyscent in the U.S.

I called Plum beautiful in my New Year's eve post, but I was wrong. Real beauty contains tragedy or a hint of something dark. Beauty needs a flaw which highlights its (otherwise) perfection. Beauty is often difficult and unapproachable. There is nothing dark or unapproachable about Plum. It is sheer delight. Plum is a shower of white and pink petals on the breeze.

Oh dear, I'm back to being poetic, but I just can't help myself. I shouldn't love Plum this much. It's basically a fruity floral, right? That's nothing unusual. Have I outgrown the need for my perfumes to be, how should I say it... difficult? Like a lot of perfumistas, I started my perfume obsession with over-the-top spicy, incensey, woody, mossy, or green perfumes. Anything but pretty florals. Have I come back around to loving what everyone else already loves?

Yes, my collection has a need for something like Plum, something charming and easy to wear. I think Plum would make a perfect first perfume for my niece, too. I've been looking for something that would suit a girl, but still be high quality.

When I put on Plum, I take a deep sniff and grin. It is just so pretty! Enough rationalizing. I am beyond reason. I'm in love.

House: Mary Greenwell
Nose: Francois Robert
Top: English plum, blackcurrant, peach, bergamot and lemon
Heart: gardenia, tuberose absolute, orange flower absolute, rose absolute and jasmine absolute
Base: precious woods, sandalwood, oakmoss, patchouli, amber and white musk

Painting: William-Adolphe Bouguereau, Le ravissement de Psyché (The Rapture of Psyche) (1895)

I might never have heard of Plum if it wasn't for my lovely fellow perfume bloggers. Check out the reviews of Plum by The Scent Critic, Muse in Wooden Shoes, This Blog Really Stinks, and Waft... What A Fragrancefanatic Thinks.


  1. You have to stop!! I want everything you write about! ;)

    This is a gorgeous review, K. It's obvious you are truly in love with Plum. I have a feeling you'll be adding a bottle of this to your already impressive collection.

    I am always surprised when I fall in love with a floral. Like you , I was all about (and still am, really) "over-the-top spicy, incensey, woody, mossy, or green perfumes", but I'm finding it very difficult to resist Plum.

    When Mals started writing about Plum last year, I was interested in trying it, but I wasn't going out of my way to obtain a sample. It was a floral, after all. Since then, I have come to love a number of fruity florals (not ashamed! LOL) so it's only natural I'm hankering for Plum.

    For the sake of my financial well-being, please review a cheap celebrity perfume next post. I have no interest in purchasing them because most (but not all) of them generally smell awful. (Keith Urban's Phoenix smells pretty good!)

  2. Funny I just received some Plum in my mail today - I thought I would love it (=blind purchase) but no. To my nose it's 80s trash (Fruity and floral and dense).
    I wish I could smell what you smell ;)
    I find Plum similar to Loulou de Cacharel and PDN's juste un reve...
    The packaging is so cute though. :(

  3. Hi Zazie. I can see what you mean about 80s. Perhaps I'm being nostalgic. The 80s is when I first wore perfume, and I still like some of them.

  4. You know, maybe I just smelled too much Loulou in my pre-teen years, and it ruined the sanity of my percepetions! ;)

    And I love your review, even though I don't get the same thrills!

    I loved the 80s. I collected perfume minis at the time - very few have survived, but those that have are really very dear to me!

  5. I absolutely adore this perfume, and I am a HUGE Bouguereau fan! Thanks for the eye candy.

  6. nice opinion.. thanks for sharing....


Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.