So far, I am really loving Les Garçonnes fragrance collection. Pompon Gardenia is an amazing heady white floral blend with sweet lime. This is one of my favorite white florals ever. I love a super feminine white floral and this is a winner with its blend of gardenia, lilies, and lime.
I assume that the inspiration for Pompon Gardenia was François Pompon, a 20’s era sculptor and Rodin’s assistant. I’ve always remembered him for his sleek chouettes. But, it could just be pompon as a fashion accessory. I don’t know for sure and I really don’t care. I love the sleek and portable, ecological cardboard packaging. It’s a lovely poppy print with rich green and mauve. I peeled a bunch of ’36 era wallpaper in my rehab home that reminded me of this print and color scheme.
At first Pompon Gardenia is a lush, humid white gardenia. There is a faint aroma of watermelon and gardenia. This doesn’t smell like a Jolly Rancher watermelon hard candy or too fruity. It just adds a humid quality to the gardenia, something that is more a sweet aquatic quality than just “aquatic”. It’s more “watermelon rind”, a bit green and fresh, bitter and sweet, and what is keeping it from being like a candy-esque body spray. The sweet lime is an amazing touch to this blend. I love limes for their tart fruitiness and slight sweetness. We always have them around the kitchen. I love the smell that they leave on my hands. It is very beautiful and I always thought it would be perfect with a heady floral. Pompon Gardenia has a very pleasant slightly bitter but mostly sweet type of lime. I’m talking you smell the entire little sweet lime, including zest and juicy pulp. It’s beautiful. All of these fruits mix with dainty white lily of the valley (very understated in comparison) and big, white gardenias. Gardenia works very well with these fruits because gardenia has a slightly fruity aroma anyways. Eventually, the fragrance becomes a strong gardenia fragrance with a sweet lime twist, the watermelon rind fades, so do the other dainty white flowers. After a bit of wear, you pick up on the faintest and mildest tobacco ever. In fact the 1st few weeks that I wore this, I could barely pick up on it. It has been many, many years since I smelled the warmness and hay like quality of dried, light tobacco. I ended up wearing this one day in the summer and my husband drug me to a cigar shop. There I smelled the lovely jars of various flavored and unflavored tobacco. I smelled some that the owner referred to as “mild” and “blonde”. I could then smell this ever so slightly in this solid fragrance blend. It is faint and definitely overshadowed by the white florals. It does add some much needed warmth to the blend. Don’t let the tobacco fool you. This is not a smoky blend, “dry”, nor is it even close to being masculine. This is a pretty girl wearing an old-fashioned gardenia perfume oil and red lipstick in a quaint tobacco shop. That’s it.
This fragrance isn’t what I expected it to be. When I read the notes when it was launched, I was thinking of something much more dry, smokier with a less fruity gardenia, and maybe the kind of sweet lime wedge that has been swimming in honey colored whiskey. I was thinking something to wear in cooler weather. I was thinking of a sexy but desperate 20’s lady at a smoky bar with messy, uneven pin-curls. This is much more feminine, alive, pretty, and almost coy. It’s much more 40’s cheesecake pin-up. It is glowing with a bright red lipstick smile exposing more than pearly whites. It’s perfect like a Vargas created girl. Like I said, it wasn’t what I expected but it is something that I really like. I am happy that I bought it. It’s fairly simple aquatic gardenia with lime with a very slight tobacco dry warmth.
UPDATE – Product has been discontinued.
*Product purchased by me. Product pic from Fragrantica.