As I’ve mentioned before, my day job is in programming. This means my colleagues are mostly male engineers, quiet but passionate about building stuff. More, they are not usually into perfume, maybe they’ll do a quick spray of cologne in the morning, more out of habit than interest. But there is one type of scent that SO MANY of these guys, completely independent of each other, have expressed that they’d really really want as a perfume. Depending on personal interest – it’s the scent of new electronics, cameras, computers, phones and CARS, brand new from the factory.
When I saw that Frau Tonis was collaborating with German car manufacturer Volkswagen in creating a perfume, ”Mémoir de Pétrole”, I had to try it out. So, to all of you tech-oriented guys, that I’ve gone to school with, worked with and been friends with, this review is for you!
The very first whiff of ”Mémoir de Pétrole” smells of peppery violets. Within seconds, a huge soapy note emerges and soon dominates the whole composition. This is no fancy hand soap, this soap is comes in bulky plastic jugs, is clear blue and smells like unforgiving chemicals – it’s exactly the kind of washing liquid used to get your beloved car all lathery before rinsing it off with a hose.
The soapy car wash phase lasts for about an hour. As it trails off, the scents of car seats made of synthetic fabrics, smooth metal and big parking garages are revealed. I’ve never tried to describe the scent of a garage before, there is something both heavy and light about the exhaust fume residues floating around in the air. I keep seeing violets, caked-up in coarse, dirty gray sludge. Mémoire de Pétrole is also a very cold feeling scent. Chunks of gray, dirty snow, that have fallen off the undercarriage of moving vehicles, come to mind. The combo of violets, grey dirt and metal does make it a very steampunk-y feeling perfume.
To be honest, I’m a very car sick person and I’m so uninterested in the whole driving experience that I haven’t even bothered getting a drivers license of my own, so I guess I’m not in the target audience for Mémoire de Pétrole. However, for people that love cars and everything that comes with them, I think this is a well crafted scent that does hit the spot. And it’s not just for tech aficionados, but also for the occasional parfumista seeking a non-dainty violet scent, as a contrast to the woody, watery or powdery violet scents we find all around.
I might be wrong about this as my German isn’t top notch, but I think that anyone who’s interested in trying Mémoire de Pétrole can order a 2 ml sample for free on the Volkswagen Home Page (as long as they last). So, go ahead and give it a try!
Official notes: petrol, green violet, iris, pepper and leather.
My sample was sent to me from Frau Tonis Parfum.