Musings : Fucking Fabulous by Tom Ford. What’s In A Name?

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A new limited edition perfume from Tom Ford is hitting the shelves any day now called Fucking Fabulous. What to make of this? Is Tom Ford getting some sass back? Is it Gucci 90’re revisited? How about Ab Fab gone wrong? Is Estee Lauder thinking they need to talk to the millennial narcissists? Is it a desperate ploy to seem edgy? Will the name alone drive sales?

My immediate impression I have to say was that I thought it was a piss take. I had to check to see how many reputable establishments had PR’d it.  So when it seemed that it was credible my thoughts ranged from : this is sort of cheesy / tacky / a bit fun / a testing ground maybe to see how far boundaries can be pushed … as well as all of the thoughts noted above.

Even as my mind wandered, what it did do was make me sit up and take notice. Not something I’ve really done for a while in a category that has become a little stale and afraid of risk taking or making perfumes that really take your breath away. Case in point  – new releases. You can’t honestly tell me that Aura from Mugler is as good as Angel. Not by a long shot. Gabrielle from Chanel? Well it’s definitely not the best release from Chanel, far from it although it is very light and luminous (review to come).

Tom Ford is probably the only perfume brand in Lauder’s portfolio that can get away with this sort of behaviour. Frederic Malle is an obvious no no, it’s far too sophisticated and even the more contemporary Le Labo probably wouldn’t venture there as this move is a little chavvy, a bit too bogan on steroids.

Tom Ford (the designer) is really the consummate stylist across multiple mediums. His films are glossy interior and fashion porn; the scents have made their mark and his Gucci days and YSL M7 are inspiring moments, as well as his Sophie Dahl Opium advertisement that certainly ruffled feathers and caused a lot of fuss back in the day. Now though with the normalisation of sexting, porn on tap and Tinder etc, it no longer seems quite as shocking as it once did. He’s never been afraid to be a disruptor, although I’m not sure to what extent he is involved with the perfumes that bear his name.

opium sophie dahl

Anyway it’s good to see that the perfume world can get a bit of a jolt once in a while even if many consider it a lame move. I think it’s a bit crass too but somehow I like it, similar to an annoying pop tune that you can’t get out of your head.

It will be amusing to see how sales assistants sell it, although I’m sure distribution will be quite restricted and unavailable in more conservative regions.  Fucking Fabulous is priced at £205 for a 50ml EDP. Notes include bitter almond, tonka bean, orris, cashmeran, leather accord and clary sage.

Thoughts anyone?

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14 thoughts on “Musings : Fucking Fabulous by Tom Ford. What’s In A Name?”

  1. For once, I’m glad something is a limited edition. This seems like a cheap shot. Not to mention redundant, since he already has a sweetish leather (Tuscan Leather).

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    • Hello there. It’s all marketing that’s for sure. If it comes to my neck of the woods though I will be giving it a sniff anyway. Not sure if it will get here though.

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  2. poodle says:

    It strikes me as a desperate attempt for attention. He always been big on hype and low on substance to me so maybe I’m not the best judge.

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    • Hey Poodle I definitely get that sentiment. All marketing. I bet he doesn’t really have much to do with the perfumes though. Could be wrong of course but would be good to know.

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  3. The name is polarizing that’s for sure. But you know what? Everybody is talking about it, and I suspect that’s exactly what it’s all about. The buzz. My question is, what happens if the perfume is not actually “fucking fabulous”. Then it just becomes a bottle with a suggestive name and possibly a collectors item. Someone was going to do it, it was inevitable and it might as well be Tom Ford.

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    • Hey Robert. I know they’re getting the result they desired. I haven’t seen Tom Ford getting so much chatter in a while. I’m sure it will become a collectible even if it doesn’t smell that good. The juice is not really the point with this release I imagine. I have enjoyed reading the comments everywhere though. Some people are really not happy about it.

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  4. I totally agree with you. I only have one Tom Ford (Noir de Noir). He’s getting killer PR for this gamble. I appreciate the cheek and would buy it if the notes appealed to me more. I have a touchy relationship with almond in frags.

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    • Hello there. It’s definitely getting a lot of buzz without the need for a massive advertising push. You should give it a go anyway and see what it’s like. Sometimes almond is done discreetly. Although – this is Tom Ford!

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  5. This will fly off the shelves. No doubt. Well done, Tom. You still know how to get a reaction. Interesting that this coincided with the other BIG launch of the year: Gabrielle Chanel. A mere coincidence?

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    • Exactly! I did get an email headlined “It’s Back” so maybe the first issue has already flown off shelves. More people will get their hands on Gabrielle but I’m sure the Tom Ford will be more to my personal tastes.

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      • For now, I am resisting the TF hype. I like the new Gabrielle Chanel for what it is. A modern and easy floral, albeit no masterpiece.

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