Fragrance Find: The sun will come out… eventually

02|28|2010

It’s been nothing but rainstorm after rainstorm for the past couple weeks, and the occasional time outs for a little sunshine have only served to make it more unbearable. But fragrance is at least partly about creating your own world space, march of seasons be damned. To that end, I set out this Saturday to find myself a little bit of spring in a bottle.

Sun Java, by Franck Olivier, is what I eventually came back with.

The name Sun Java might sound familiar to web developers, a class of people not necessarily known for getting outside much. Yet it’s actually about as heliotropic as fragrance gets. A new fresh flanker for Franck Olivier’s Java line, Sun trades out the former’s incense heart for a relatively straightforward fruit accord. It’s much simplified, but I wouldn’t call it dumbed down. An extraordinarily fresh blast of citrus forms the opening salvo. It’s powerful, almost astringent, but fortunately it quickly behaves. This fragrance is really about one note: watermelon.

If you ask me, there’s really nothing that says warm weather like watermelon. It calls to mind lazy days in the park, sun dappling down through the leaves of a tree, making one squint, tickling one’s nose. Within minutes of applying Sun Java I felt ready for a barbecue. Never mind the fact that it’s hard to start a grill in this rain.

Sun Java’s base is a conventional assemblage of amber, vanilla and musk. It’s not bad, but as an old standby in perfumery, it’s a little disappointing. Overall, this fragrance doesn’t have a lot of dynamicism, but as what’s there is so good, it’s hard to be too disappointed when it doesn’t change over time.

Longevity on this spring scent is decent, but not spectacular. On my skin, the heart was still noticeable 6 hours later, and I could still smell the barest remnants of the base the next day. Sillage, on the other hand, is excellent. You’ll be leaving a trail of spring freshness behind you wherever you walk. Not a bad way to chase the storm clouds away, or at the very least attract a someone else who’s looking forward to warmer days to help you weather them.

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