Picture: Lemon - fleur et fruit. Photo: Elena Chochkova (cc)
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...or just Camélia Chinois, it has been re-named in recent years, is a Maitre Parfumeur et Gantier creation from 1997. As Jean Laporte transferred the ownership of MPG to Jean-Paul Millet Lage that year I'm not sure who is the creator but I suppose Jean Laporte as Jean-Paul Millet Lage was trained several years by Laporte as a part of the deal. Given the weirdness and peculiarity of this perfume, is suppose the nose is Laporte.
Camélia Chinois is definitly NOT a crowdpleaser. When I first put it on i thought, "Oh now do I have to suffer through a whole day with this". The opening is a sharp burst of lemony cleaner combined with a note that is similar to something that according to Mr Parfumista is similar to lily of the vally. This observation was independently confirmed by the kids who told me "You smell like grandmother", a faithful wearer of Diorissimo and Jessica McClintock. But according to the notelist there is no lily of the vally, but who knows. There are also some green and fresh herbal notes playing around.
When lived through the topnotes with conflicting emotions suddenly the CC transforms to a creamy, slight soapy, well balanced, light flowery, still lemony but now in a soft texture, green, soft herbal (preferably basil) blend. The mixture is somehow airy, bright and light even if it is very potent (on my skin at least). I read in a comment at Fragrantica that Camélia Chinois is a french name of a teaplant and probably it's the teanote that cause that airy note and maybe also the detergent note that lurking in the background. But on the other hand, the teanote is not as distinguishable and harsh as in the Bulgari perfumes, it's of another kind and so well blended with the oter notes. The lemony notes in Camélia Chinois have some similarities with the natural perfume Norvége from DoubleYou, a fragrance I will review in a month or two.
In spite of it's strangeness, Camélia Chinois is perfect for casual wearing during a day at work. It's a sunny and happy fragrance that lightens up a gloomy day. The sillage is moderate and the longivity is great.
To summon up I have found another MPG favorite but this time in another style than the musky, dirty, jasmine ones that I usually appreciate from the house. MPG is, according to my opinion, an underrated perfumhouse that usually offers surprises, good or bad. But their fragrances almost never leaves me unaffected.
Notes: Grapefruit, bergamot, tea, basil, resins, sandalwood, musk