Time changes everything. It’s a phenomenon so familiar that it barely registers anymore, partially due to the sheer amount of exceptions there seem to be: trees that will outlive us and barely shift in appearance over the decades, histories and stories seemingly carved into stone, and even photos on the internet we’re told will never disappear by worried parents. Of course, time changes all these things too. It’s often the limitations of our perspective, and lifetimes, that make some things seem permanent. But then there are artforms whose works are scarily subject to age. Classic videogames corrupt over time and become unplayable. Vinyl records warp and scratch. Perfume, well…perfume goes sideways in a number of ways.
As a physical art form, perfumes gradually undergo heat and light damage that can completely ruin a scent. Even more startling are changing ingredients regulations that can force perfumers to retire original formulas. Vintage scents can be incredibly difficult to track down due to these factors combined. a perfume might not only be discontinued or dramatically reformulated, making the supply low but the wear and tear of time on each bottle’s contents can make the few available bottles a shadow of their former selves. This is why something like Amouage’s Jubilation 25, a luxurious retread of classics like Mitsouku and Rochas Femme, can actually be worth sky-high prices. The question, of course, is whether or not the scent is more than an expensive nostalgia trip.
Amouage 25 Notes
Tarragon, lemon, ylang ylang, rock rose, frainkcense, davana, labdanum ciste, patchouli, amber, vetiver, musk, myrrh
Jubilation 25 comes with unavoidably high expectations, and depending on your taste, you’re likely to either find it joyous or disappointing. Jubilation XXV is a modern masterpiece, a fruity incense concoction with a delicious blend of personality and universal appeal. Jubilation 25 shares nothing in common with the perfume except its aim for glittery excess, couching a brisk opening in a soft floral amber base. This is a prime candidate for ‘this smells like my grandma!’ criticisms. It’s hard to imagine anyone taking a first pass at Jubilation 25 and identifying it as a twenty-first-century release.
However, there is more than enough here to keep even skeptical noses coming back for more. First of all, there is an intoxicating, peach-fuzz fruitiness to the perfume’s opening act. As the perfume dries down, that quality morphs into an elegant high note that floats above a polite yet satisfying incense-amber foundation. It’s far more dynamic than you’d expect. It’s quite shocking to watch an old-school revamp transform into something startlingly modern and friendly. This results in a perfume that truly is worth a visit, no matter if you’re trying to revisit a lost classic or just dive into a genre you often ignore.
That doesn’t mean that Jubilation 25 is for everyone. The unabashed old-school femme opening never completely disappears, and noses that associate any throwback scent with a grandparent will find it hard to shake the comparison. If that’s a problem for you, you might want to pass this on by. But it sure would be a shame to find yourself craving a touch of the past, only to find that Jubilation 25 had disappeared with it.
The Fandomentals “Fragdomentals” team base our reviews off of fragrances that we have personally, independently sourced. Any reviews based off of house-provided materials will be explicitly stated.
Have strong thoughts about this piece you need to share? Or maybe there’s something else on your mind you’re wanting to talk about with fellow Fandomentals? Head on over to our Community server to join in the conversation!
Be the first to leave a review.