The Different Company is on a creative roll right now. Two recent offerings have hit the spot – I miss Violet and Adjatay. I miss Violet, signed by Bertrand Duchaufour is a fresh take on violet paired with a soft, supple suede that melts on skin. Adjatay is also a leathered fragrance, although much darker in tone and this time with tuberose to the fore, playing with contrasts – soft and loud, tender and rough. Leather nirvana if you will. Adjatay is signed by perfumer Alexandra Monet and The Different Company have teamed with her again for new release Santo Incienso. I was rather intrigued to see what direction this new perfume would take.
Santo Incienso, Sillage Sacre (Extrait de Parfum) : Nose : Alexandra Monet: Year : 2017 : Notes : Top: Calabrian bergamot, petitgrain, nutmeg : Middle : Palo Santo, hedione, Atlas cedar : Base : Incense, myrrh, milky musk, vetiver, guiaic wood
The spiritual world of the shaman and the Palo Santo tree are the inspiration for Santo Incienso. The Palo Santo tree is grown along the coast of South America and the name in Spanish means Holy Wood. It is used in Shamanic rituals as well as healing and is known for its energising, cleansing and mood enhancing properties. The burning wood has a pine, mint and citrus like odour.
“I like the idea that we have to burn Palo Santo in order to reveal its scent. I’ve created this fragrance combining Myrrh and Incense with Atlas cedar, Nutmeg and Bergamot from Calabria in order to bring its freshness and contrast.” (Alexandra Monet)
I’m not sure if I’m imagining it but Santo Incienso really does seem to make me feel centred and calm when wearing this. The bergamot and petitgrain lend a freshness to the scent at first but there’s also a little spiciness from the nutmeg. A woodiness with cuts of green that I assume is the Palo Santo mixes well with what I call the ethereal lightness of being.
There’s a real sense of lightness at the heart of this perfume. Traditionally I’ve found scents with incense and myrrh tend to err towards a heavier Middle Eastern style or a churchy ambience. Santo Incienso is quite different. There is a light incense here, not weighed down by an abundance of resins or heavy woods. It’s more atmospheric heading for sky. This is shamanism reaching upwards, not bound to the earth. It feels ethereal and unencumbered and as Primal Scream would say it’s Movin’ On Up. There is a link to the earth with the vetiver and guiaic wood that roots the scent but these are not overly heavy either and in the tug of war I feel that the heavens are winning. The texture of the perfume is not what I would call smooth, it is a little bumpy, grainy even but at times there are little licks of cream but only ever so slightly.
This is one of those perfumes that definitely feels gender neutral. Santo Incienso isn’t a full force fragrance; it has a medium sillage and wears close to skin after a couple of hours. In comparison to perfumes like Palo Santo from Carner Barcelona that also references Palo Santo, Santo Incienso has no sweetness at all. If you enjoyed Le 15, a limited edition perfume to celebrate 15 years of The Different Company also by Alexandra Monet, then you will definitely want to try Santo Incienso. It feels like the younger sister, similar in nature, but Santo Incienso feels lighter, more airy and skyward bound.
The Low Down : A light, ethereal spiritual woods and incense perfume that calms and centres while reaching skywards.
Read more about Santo Incienso on Cafleurebon
Pricing : RRP is 185 Euro for 100ml and a 10ml travel size is available for 45 Euro. Check The Different Company website for further details.
Notes : Images : Featured Image : The Different Company : Other : Megan In Sainte Maxime
Disclosure : Sample gratefully received from The Different Company. Opinions my own.