José Vicente Cândido

Hi,
I am a proud portuguese perfume lover! I founded LOVERS Portugal in the beginning of 2016 from my vision that perfumes can be seen as potential artistic objects alongside with its inherited commercial role. In this platform we explore both the art and the business of modern perfumery.

José Cândido

Acqua di Gio | Perfume Review

Acqua di Gio Perfume Review

Armani’s must successful perfume is now celebrating its 20th anniversary! Acqua di Gio is, still, the ultimate summer cologne every man can get, I think. No chance about that! It was thought during Giorgio Armani’s vacation summer at Pantellerie as a summer fragrance that would inspire young boys in the late 90’s but it would not be aligned to a generation: it is a multi-generation perfume, having consumers from all ages.
Alberto Morillas’ portfolio is full of major perfume hits: "212" for "Carolina Herrera", "Tommy Boy" for "Tommy Hilfiger", "Pleasures" for "Estée Lauder" and "Panthere" for "Guerlain", just to quote a few… In 1996 he is assigned to develop his first fragrance for the house Armani and the name would have to be Acqua di Gio.
Referred as one of the 13 perfumes in the 90’s, Acqua di Gio is a modern perfumery classic for many reasons, namely the growing demand for Nature-oriented fragrances and, in particular, to the Sea. The leading concept of this perfume is, naturally, freshness: a fresh fragrance for a customer that is getting more and more concern about his personal toilette, comfort and good looking. The presence of floral and aquatic accords deploys the customer to a vacation experience, near the Ocean. It is as simple as that!
The simplicity of the fragrance is transported to a modest bottle and package where you can acknowledge the elegance and charm of the modern man, without many props or large illusions, in clear straight lines, white background and a textured package and lettering.

José Vicente Cândido - March 15, 2017.


A*Men | Perfume Review

A*Men

About 20 years passed since A*Men was released, one of the most renown male perfumes worldwide. It is the first fragrance for men by Thierry Mugler and, as it should, the leading concept of this perfume is, precisely, manhood evocation, a name that is composed by two very important male elements: nature (hence Men) and metaphysics (read Amen).
Oriental aromatic fragrances were, in the 90's, rare; the first combination between these two very distinct aromas – oriental and woody – resulted on 1853 Lady by "Acqua di Genova" on mid XIXth century, and the only successful perfumes in this olfactory family were Obsession for men by "Calvin Klein" and Dune and Dolce Vita by "Christian Dior" though from 2010 oriental woody fragrances flourished on male perfumery.
A*Men is an Oriental Woody with a revolutionary accord, at time, that was “Absolute Coffe”, which employs a strong, masculine and virile season to interact with the soften, sweet and sensual character of Vanilla.
The bottle, designed personally by Thierry Mugler, it’s a curious object of surly straight lines (typically man-like) with the combination between two materials: rubber and metal. The shape of the bottle is a revivalism to alcohol "patacas", a liquid pot that soldiers used to transport their drinks (supposedly since Napoleon Bonaparte’s time) hence its concave shape. What an idea!
There are, at least, two A*Men commercials being one from 2010 and the other from the following year. About both I have to admit to become rapt with the mystical perspective from the second and the very human perception of the first (featuring Oscar Pistorius!). You have to see them both to get the appropriate image of A*Men!

José Vicente Cândido - December 29, 2017.


Snow White's Perfume | Perfume Review

Lanvin Modern Princess

The moment any consumer enters a perfumery to choose a new perfume, brands battle each other over the success or failure of their fragrances. In fact, the quantity and diversity of perfumes that currently exists on the market compel perfume brands to develop much more than excellent fragrances (a good fragrance is just not good enough, stated the chairlady of the Estée Lauder Group) and that they go through captivating jars and packaging and, above all, sweeping stories.
A good fragrance does not make a good perfume as a good story does not create an excellent fragrance. There is some magical, transcendent, metaphysical, and supernatural phenomenon associated with perfumes: they play with our emotions and carry us, often, to the level of Fantasy and Myth. This is the case of Lanvin's Modern Princess.
The association of this perfume with Snow White is glaring. Just see the ad! A woman who, on one hand, is a princess who is allowed to meet by a prince in her bed and whose union is sealed by a kiss, is the same princess who, before that moment, lives with the most brutal and savage nature of being human, becoming a secret agent and a femme fatale, perhaps, whose mission is ... to save the world. It is in this almost typically feminine duality that the Modern Princess stands.
The fragrance is a seductive combination of intense fruity elements - Red Currant and ... Red Apple - with various aromatic flowers such as Freesia, Vanilla Orchid and Jasmine.
Versatile and multifaceted, just like the modern woman, the bottle is in a vertical signature, through sensual lines. A metal chain - a symbol of the "Maison Lanvin" - elegantly wraps around the bottle neck. In tune with this spirit of contradiction, modern carton transmits the same character of duality in color: an explosion of incarnate contrasts with the sparkling white logo, synonymous with absolute purity ("Modern Princess" press release, 2017).

José Vicente Cândido - June 15th, 2017.


Why Shouldn't Vegans use Vegan Perfumes

José Vicente Cândido

Hi Lovers,
Welcome to the LOVERS Vegan Week 2018! During the week from March 5th to March 11th we are promoting practices and products, from food to makeup, that help Vegans to live "in their way" without losing life quality.
Some authors were challenged to write their opinions regarding the vegan philosophy. Mine will reflect on why vegans shouldn’t use, at all, vegan perfumes.
Firstly, we must acknowledge that there are many articles, essays and studies about the health impact of fragrances that use both organic and synthetic ingredients. There’re also many scholars who study the water pollution problem caused by perfumery. But, I must attest, that there are still few articles that purchase the environmental impact of modern perfumery.
TThanks to the IFF (International Fragrance Foundation), animal-driven ingredients are forbidden on the perfume industry. Would that mean that all perfumes sold on US and European perfumeries are vegan? Not really, there are a few exceptions. To be 100% vegan, a perfume can’t be made of the still used following compounds: Castoreum (that is exuded from the Castor sac of North American beavers), Civet and Musk (both originally extracted from deers), African Stone or Hyraceum (that comes from hyrax'dung and urine), Beeswax and Honey (both from Bees) and Ambergris (typically known as whale's vomit). Although having animal originis, all these ingredients are still used on modern perfumery.
Banning animal-based ingredients on modern perfumery caused a massive use of synthetics that, according to the the American National Academy of Sciences report, 95% of chemicals used in synthetic fragrances are driven from crude oil. Apart from Castoreum, Civet (entirely banned) and Musk (replaced by synthetics), all these compounds are extracted from animal waste products.
We must recollect that fragrance industry was almost a pioneer on banning animal-origin products. The debate over vegan perfumes really lies, in my point of view, whether we can tolerate using animal waste driven products on perfumery or if we must accept all the toxic negative impacts of a synthetic fragrance industry.

José Vicente Cândido - March 3rd, 2018.


Escape from Yourself

Michael Kors WonderLust perfume review

It’s, perhaps, the first time I smell a Michael Kors and it actually nails it! For that I give you my gratitude; honestly I thought Michael Kors wasn’t a top fragrance brand – it has a relatively short portfolio and it is a fairly recent (since 2000) perfume activity. For Michael Kors to grow and step further into this industry it had to create a hit. Could it be "WonderLust"? I can’t be sure but I would bet it is.
The generator idea for this perfume is the human appeal to travel and to “escape” from her world (it’s a female fragrance) to a tropical place which is, usually, a natural wonder. My thesis is that perfumes can be, besides commercial products, works of art but one cannot forget that they are conceived to be consumed by people and, therefore, they have to reach the highest human feelings and emotions. Michael Kors perceived that and developed a concept which so much dear to so many people: the inner force to travel, the spirit of “escaping” and the determination to discover world’s wonders.
When you apply it to your skin (and you have to, at least, try it) it is, in my opinion, impossible to not be familiar with this idea of evading. WonderLust fragrance is a rich mixture of floral and fruity elements, starting with Almond Milk and Bergamot and evolving into a composition of Dianthus and Heliotrope that gives you that tropical scent with a nice finish of Sandalwood and Benzoin, it’s a very simple olfactory composition and, yet, it’s powerful.
Unlike almost any other Michael Kors perfume bottles, either solid blocks or minimalistic narrow stones, WonderLust is, also at this level, a slightly different piece; it’s an elegant curved object that appeals to woman sensuality, obviously.
The TV commercial for this perfume seems a lit bit poor and, worse, it does not “demand” me to acquire this fragrance but, in a certain way, it can capture WonderLust’s idea with a sort of a refinement.

José Vicente Cândido - August 3rd, 2017.