I have already tested, even possessed, several fragrances by Paco Rabanne that I found very pleasant. So when a nice perfume company sent me a sample of Lady Million EdP, I was quite pleased and curious. Because this perfume has so far passed me by, so to speak, although it seems to be very popular. The name and design of the bottle didn't appeal to me. Both seem deliberately pretentious to me. Real millionaires - unless they're newly rich - are rarely show-offs who light their cigars with banknotes and hang themselves with thick gold chains.
Of course, this image of the "moneyed aristocracy" mentioned here can also be treated with humor. When I saw Lady Million, I immediately thought of an Austrian phenomenon that is now known far beyond the borders: the Money Boy ("Andy Lubitz", "Swag", "Gucci and Prada"). This is the name of a rapper, born in 1981, who also plays with status symbols. In his videos he wears expensive designer clothes, poses in front of luxury cars and pretends to have any "bitch". At first this seemed so ridiculous that it was attractive again. In the meantime, Money Boy has found something like his own style with the help of professional arrangers and is not only clicked because he looks ridiculous, but has become musically interesting and shows self-irony. After all, behind the often provocative Austrorapper is an academic, who in real life is called Sebastian Meisinger and wrote his journalism master thesis about gangsta rap in Germany and therefore knows the scene well enough to imitate it. But because of his deliberate exaggerations a lot of things get a certain wink, which gives the show-off something playful.
I had a good time watching those Lady Million commercials. Protagonist is Dree Hemingway, born in 1987, an American movie starlet and model for Givenchy, Lavin, Chanel and the "Playboy". In the chic black and white video she plays a rich bitch in a low-cut, skin-tight black glitter dress with a tousled blonde mane. Of course, all the set pieces are there again that the average consumer associates with wealth: a fleet of luxury cars, status jewellery and power, which of course is also associated with money. And so the attractive, but also deliberately cheap-looking blonde mutates into a spoiled luxury creature, to whom the handsomest men lie at her feet and give her precious gifts, which she only makes fun of.
Yeah, you can smile at that crude story. But it does show what kind of audience is being targeted here: young women with Cindarella ambitions who dream of being rich and powerful. Lady Million gives them this illusion for some time. Because this fragrance has the effect that some young girls might imagine that dominant, rich ladies smell - which of course is not true in real life.
This sophisticated advertising image was taken one step further: I suppose it was the company itself that started the rumor that the perfume "smells like money". Anyone who thinks that rich women need to be young, sexy and beautiful is easily convinced of this and sniffs the scent of money. It is well known that you can interpret a lot into a fragrance. Also that a flowery perfume smells of money.
Now what does Lady Million smell like?
According to the pyramid, the fragrance starts with raspberry, neroli and bitter orange. Supposedly there are also amalfizitronen in the fragrance. That would be nice. Some who have tested it describe the raspberry note as sparkling like lemonade. I like to think so. Raspberries in general - I like them if they are not too sour. But the raspberries don't even show up at my place, let alone smell them. Nor do the Amalfizitrons, by the way. Strange. Bitter orange? It doesn't stand out much either. I make Lady Million sweet and floral. White-blooded, to be exact. At Parfumo, the gardenia is not listed in the ingredients, but according to other sources and my nose it is there - and not too scarce. The only problem is: I don't like gardenia scent very much. It is too heavy and sweet for me. And here it also appears in combination with jasmine, even jasmine sambac. The oil of this Indian olive tree is even more intense than that of the more well-known jasmine grandiflorum. For 1 kg Absolue - jasmine can neither be distilled with steam nor extracted with alcohol - you need 1000 kg of fresh flowers. I love the smell of fresh jasmine flowers in nature. When it comes to perfumes, I have my difficulties with such intensely scented flowers.
But nobody stops the sweetness. It is intense and almost narcotic or hypnotic. Unfortunately I don't like narcotic or hypnotic scents. I've always avoided Alien, Angel, Hypnotic Poison and La Vie est Belle. Not for me. In this sense it is also no coincidence that especially these hypno bombs, which are recommended if you like Lady Million, are not among my Tops of the Pops But I have nothing at all against white flowers, e.g. in connection with Musk. I like to wear something like that on warm summer evenings when I'm in the mood for it But here comes the full droning of a pompous floral scent. I feel it almost overwhelming. The scent is feminine, yes, some may find it seductive, sensual or sexy. Not me. It's too clear in its message for me. It overwhelms me with its sweetness and numbing heaviness, which seems almost obtrusive.
I am thinking of some reviewers who have something like this in mind: Oh, I thought it was a redneck scent, but it's so delicate and subtle and lovely anyway...
Well, I cannot join that group. I love sophisticated fragrances that offer something new and interesting. But not only. Like I said, I'm pretty good with "White Musk" scents. I also find them cuddly, sweet and seductive. But I just can't do with some of the highly acclaimed women's scents. Among them are the already mentioned Chanel 5 and Chypres.
I'm sorry. I don't mean to offend anybody. But I just find Lady Million to be provocative, cheap, loud and vulgar. That's my personal impression. It's a matter of taste. I've worn it a few times, but I'm not comfortable with it. This - in my opinion - bold and seductive style does not give me enough style and refinement.
White honey should also be added to the base note. I like the smell of white honey, but not in a perfume. Fortunately, however, the honey is rather reserved with me anyway.
What surprised me was that the fragrance didn't stick to me as intensively as some people describe it. I would say that Sillage and durability are "within limits" - meaning not too opulent or too inconspicuous. Rather weaker than expected. Nevertheless the fragrance has a dominant presence.
In the drydown phase, I find Lady Million still best when the fragrance - probably due to the patchouli - becomes softer and gentler and no longer has that deliberately provocative quality.
A perfume that suggests the smell of money would certainly be an exciting thing for me. But here I only find a lot of gardenia and jasmine. That's not enough for me.