Some perfumes knock you off your feet the minute you find them. Others take time (years in this case) to win you over. Amarige by Givenchy isn’t the type of fragrance I normally gravitate to.  I don’t love many of the bold (effusive?) perfumes when I first smell them but some have grown on me over time. Amarige is one that has and I finally understand why it’s still around.

Givenchy’s Amarige was created by top perfumer Dominique Ropion who has given us such noteworthy scents as Kenzo Jungle L’Elephant and Frédéric Malle Carnal Flower, as well as many others. According to Givenchy founder Hubert de Givenchy, Amarige was designed to conjure up images of “mirages and magic…amorous, marvelous encounters and marriage”.

The first time I tried Amarige was right after it first came out in 1991. Immediately following its launch, it was one of those “it” perfume that you would smell everywhere you turned. There was no escaping this monster of a scent. I remember literally cringing every time it wafted near me. When I tried it on my own skin, its bouquet of white florals seemed aggressively overpowering. I’ve always loved florals but this was too much of a good thing.

 Anyways, after sniffing it again a few days ago it seemed to me that it was no longer the beast of a perfume that I remembered. I don’t know if it was a reformulation of Amarige that somehow made it more palatable to me or my more recent acquired appreciation of scents that I used to automatically dismiss or what. Whatever the reason, I didn’t find it heavy and cloying this time around. That said, it’s not something I’ll be rushing out to buy anytime soon.

According to author and perfume critic Jan Moran, Hubert de Givenchy designed Amarige to conjure up images of “Mirages and magic…amorous magic encounters and marriage…a tribute to youthful exuberance.”

Amarige embodies tuberose at its finest, surrounded by mimosa and gardenia, and and enhanced by delicious fruity notes of mandarin, plum and peach. The dry down features sensual musk, wood and vanilla notes. There is an initial burst of sweetness to Amarige but once it settles on the skin it turns into musky and slightly woody.

 Amarige isn’t a modest perfume, in fact it could actually be considered LOUD. On the positive side, it smells joyful and full of life. The sillage is huge and it lasts forever. This is one that you’ll be wearing until your next shower.