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The Commodification of Luxury: A Look into the New Perfume Line, Commodity.

By May 2, 2018 No Comments

Towards the end of April, Art of Scent formally introduced to the press and buying public their latest addition to their growing one-of-a-kind niche fragrance offerings from the perfume store specialist, Commodity Fragrances.

Commodity started quite recently (2013) but has been gaining momentum in various Fragrance communities and groups worldwide. Only 5 years after, Commodity’s fragrance, home fragrance, baths and personal product repertoire expanded to about 25 distinct variants.

Art of Scent, the premier perfume shop of the country, won the bid to be one of two exclusive distributors in SEA (and from what I gather, the only other company that distributes them in the region would be Sephora).

So, what does this London-based perfume and personal cosmetic shop has in store for us? We took a deeper look at the offerings during Art of Scent’s special VIP Press Launch.

White, Black and Platinum – 3 Distinct Lines of the Collection

There are 3 distinct lines from Commodity that are available at Art of Scent. These are the Black, White and Platinum lines with each category having a bunch of fragrance variants within. Suffice to say all of Commodity’s fragrances are marketed as unisex but there are some that are more attuned to feminine or masculine standards than others. But that’s not to discourage you to try all – because at the end of the day, if you can rock a superbly floral scent and you’re a guy, who’s to tell you otherwise, right?

WHITE

Perhaps the freshest among the selections from Commodity, the White collection is a collection of bright, floral, sparkling scents that will intoxicate you especially in this withering summer heat! Out of the 4 that Art of Scent brought in (Gold, Rain, Tea and Magnolia), it’s probably Gold that drew me in in abject femininity. Which is kinda weird considering Gold is the gourmand of the collection – Vanilla, Benzoin, Molten Amber and Creamy Musk gives the fragrance a decadence you’d want to bathe in every single time you spray. It’s light (thanks to the initial zesty burst of Juniper Berries) yet crazy intoxicatingly yummy!

There’s also Rain and Tea that provides a unique freshness that’s perfectly suited for our climate. The Rain, in particular, would probably be a runaway hit for Filipino users. Tea on the other hand is quite challenging to wear – especially the first 20 minutes or so as I find the tea note just a little bit too strong. That’s not such a bad thing, though, because at least you know they used real tea infusion for the collection. The scent doesn’t smell anything too “commercialized” (you know how “tea” flavoring taste/ smells like versus real tea leaves steeped? Yeah, it’s like that).

 

BLACK

The Black Collection contains darker-toned fragrances but houses some of the more unique and artistic creations in my opinion. Take Book as an example.

The initial impression is literally like smelling an old book or wading through rows of crisp newly printed volumes of books in a grand library somewhere. Bibliophiles, you definitely would want to get your hands on these.

On a more cosmetic-level, Book is an excellent expression of a Sandalwood-centric scent. Mixed with dry Cypress and sparkling bergamot, Book – at least in the marketing notes – conjure up images of Hemmingway and Fitzgerald or you, curled up with a good book and getting lost in its pages in one sunny, lazy afternoon.

There’s GIN, MOSS and WOOL available, too with GIN being the sparkling citrus-tonic-like scent that we’re all familiar with. It’s a great choice for the day while WOOL might be best suited for night time affairs. Go with MOSS if you love green and herbaceous scents. This one, like GIN, works excellent in warmer conditions.

 

PLATINUM

My favorite among the line collection, Platinum, focuses on luxurious indulgence and brings out the best of the featured note labelled on the bottle. Leather, Orris, Vetiver, Bergamot, and Tonka, these 5 represent an exemplary focus

Leather is strong, almost animalic, yet retains a subdued sophistication while Tonka is indulgent without being extremely cloying. The standout among the collection would be Orris with its floral-metallic, almost silver-like luxurious scent. Truly one of the best interpretation of the Platinum Collection.

But as someone who’s been obsessed with vetiver for the longest time, my eye naturally fell towards Commodity’s Vetiver. In a word: WOW. Commodity’s Vetiver is one of the truly unique vetiver-centric scents I’ve ever sampled, and now, part of my collection. This sits well within the spectrum of easily wearable vetiver in warmer weather as Commodity infuses the usually dark, rooty plant, with loads of bright and crisp fruits.

The classic vetiver scent pairs the rooty plant with citruses like bergamot, but Commodity chose to go totally left field and instead pump the juice with Apples and Blackberry. Creating a wonderfully fruity nuanced touch. The rooty Haitian Vetiver is mixed with Indonesian Patchouli and Sandalwoods from Australia to create a smokey rooty center and base. The surprise with the composition lies in the heartnotes of Jasmine and Sampaguita offering white floral sophistication to an otherwise masculine fragrance. This Vetiver is extremely unisex and performs relatively good (around 5-7hours). But, as with majority of the vetiver fragrances out there, projection is an issue with the scent reaching skin-scent after about an hour to an hour and a half’s mark. Still, it makes an excellent signature scent regardless of the weather.

Bergamot is my second bottle from the brand and while at first, I thought I would regret getting it (because of how simple the scent is), upon closer inspection, Commodity’s take on Bergamot takes a whole new level of sophistication from layering the bitter aromatic citrus plant with zestier citrus and a generous portion of floral nuances. Because of the scent’s composition, this bergamot-centric scent lasts quite a bit more than others (all Commodity fragrances are EDP in nature – which means more fragrance oil included in the overall composition).

For those thinking if Commodity Perfumes and Fragrances are priced exorbitantly high because of the nature of the perfume (niche) and its sophisticated lines and collection, you’d be happy to know that this brand is priced quite competitively compared to majority of the brands out there. In fact, the prices are much lower than what Jo Malone had to offer. With the White and Black lines priced just below Php 6000 at Php 5250 for a 100ml EDP, that makes Commodity relatively affordable. The Platinum line is priced at Php 6,750. This and Etat Libre D’Orange, another offering from Art of Scent are two excellent recommendations for quality niche fragrances that won’t break the bank.

Commodity also has scented candles and bar soaps for you to indulge on as well. Check out Commodity today at your nearest Art of Scent boutiques.

 

 

Colin Chan

Colin Chan

All-around geek, Colin stretches his passion for fashion and fragrances (really, he's an addict). A once regular contributor for Unbox, he's jumped from site to site and juggles Ungeek.ph as well as Unpacked.ph. In his off time he scours through mounds of websites, youtube reviews and ads that talk about perfume (that's when he's not busy gobbling up TV series, movies and videos games left and right).