Tuberose has a bad reputation in perfumes (and for a reason) as one of the most potentially evil of white flowers. But this Carnal Flower Malle is different. On the skin this starts immediately with a balsamic minty greenness, which tames the power of the florals density. This balsamic side is a peculiar, quite unexpected counterpart to the floralcy of tuberose, and it’s almost harsh on the throat.
The blotter is way richer. Whereas on the skin there are still some animalic notes pushing from underneath, on here the fragrance is brighter, with also a stinging bergamot to the mix. If this is what you get on your skin, then this perfume by Frederic Malle is far from your usual white floral powerhouse. The mint and the fresh notes work with tuberose, uplift it, and create something strong but wearable even if you’re still far from third-age, which is where a white floral would normally belong.
On both sides, perfume Carnal Flower will get vague honey-sweet notes in the dry down, with tuberose being one part of the equation and not the main character. The calmness of the base notes makes the intensity of the opening actually stronger in the memory.
Carnal Flower is alive, like the remarkable yellow of its liquid, and even though at times it feels half light, half nostalgic, it’s sexy all the way. Perfumer Dominique Ropion (Amor Amor by Cacharel, Un Fleur de Cassie, Amarige by Givenchy) sure took a super intense tuberose, but joined it with other notes with enough personality to keep it at bay, and make it even smile a little. And for that we’re grateful.