I remember the first time I smelled Daisy. My initial thoughts were that it was a scent marketed towards a young generation of consumers looking for an easy to wear perfume. The package and advertisements hinted at youth, innocence, and fun frivolity, tickling at visions of girls or young women wearing peasant dresses while enjoying their best selves in either spring or summertime.
The fragrance seemed guiltless, formulated as a fruity, floral, woody concoction, not at all menacing, very enjoyable, and acceptable for many occasions, most of which would be casual daytime moments. The bonus of good longevity and decent sillage made it a success. The content and the bottle create a tautology of sorts, but who would resist such a pretty presentation? That cap is darn beautiful, bringing thoughts of a long-lost Americana trapped somewhere around the 60s. Jacobs clearly chose the daisy flower for its associations with joy and purity. Most daisies do not have a perceptible odor and the ones that do, smell foul.
The scent itself starts with a hefty dose of hesperidic grapefruit, juicy violet leaf, and fruits that even when described as strawberries, are closer to green apple. This is where comparisons to Light Blue arise: they both convey the sensation of biting into a tart Granny Smith shrouded by freshness. Frankly, it is mouthwatering, but the similarities start to faint right there. Light Blue takes you into a day well-spent near the ocean surrounded by a salty sea breeze. On the other hand, the effect of Daisy is different: it is dewy, somewhat cold, similar to what you would experience at 6:00 AM somewhere temperate, with the sun barely rising above the horizon and blooms covered by mist.
The heart is composed of violets, jasmine, and some other impression of a white flower. The violet note makes it stand out from time to time thanks to the ionones that typically produce intermittent anosmia, generating the effect of a fragrance that appears and departs over and over, also adding a sense of maturity. The base, comprised of woody accords, musks, and a dash of some vanillic ingredient, provides a substantial foundation for the top and middle notes, extending their life well beyond expected.
To my nose, the star of the perfume and the link that ties together all of the other accords is the violet leaf. Its succulent but counterintuitive dry texture grant a silvery effervescence to Daisy that is extremely appealing, while the white flowers lend cleanliness and lift. Alberto Morillas made a tremendous job of formulating something unobtrusive and difficult to dislike. Compared to the eau de toilette, the eau de parfum is thicker, with a higher emphasis on the flowers.
At first, all of these characteristics made me believe that this was a creation for people lacking second intentions. One day, after smelling Daisy, I realized that underneath all that frou-frou there was an unsettling trait bubbling under, similar to when you meet someone who appears to be inoffensive but you perceive a degree of perversity that won’t allow you give your trust completely.
At that moment I remembered the fact that it is a Marc Jacobs release. Marc, a virtuoso of contemporary design, has built his brand based on a relatively specific approach to fashion that relies on reference, wittiness, and considerable ability to predict what the customers want before they know they want it, mixing elements of popular culture in the process. Also, his proposals regularly have an element of deceit to them: intelligence, assertiveness, and strength disguised as naivety- an attribute that he shares with no other than Mrs. Prada.
The vision that arises is that of a woman who knows everybody, sitting in a private room of a restaurant, doors opened, discussing something with someone over coffee. She seems professional, focused, and in control, but also sweet, soft-voiced, making it hard to suspect anything of her. At first, you would be fooled by her attire: banana-colored kitten heels, grey panne velvet pencil skirt, and white chiffon blouse, all seemingly naive.
Your gossiping tendencies make you pay attention to their conversation. More interest than you should. She is there communicating her choice for Secretary of State, and no, she is not just giving her political opinion. She is pointing who her string-pulling will favor and how she will make sure to rip apart her choice’s contender. A power behind the power, you comprehend that as affable as she seems, she is a force to be reckoned with. Once she notices scrutiny from you, she quickly demands the private room’s doors to be closed.
Call it the Jacobs effect, the inclusion of violet flowers, or whatever. To me, once that subtext of perversity clicked in, it has been impossible to think of prairie blossoms and girly stuff when smelling Daisy. Also, it would be unfair to pronounce it as a safe, young, pleasant scent, and nothing else. Marc Jacob’s Daisy is adequate for serious professionals and mature women as well. People will never see it as a powerhouse in the same vein as, let’s say, Opium or Portrait of a Lady, but it is a clever and solid offering that will stand the test of time.
Name: Daisy Silver Edition (*Note: Silver Edition was a special release from 2009. Only the presentation was changed, but the fragrance itself was unaltered)
House: Marc Jacobs
Concentration: Eau de parfum
Nose: Alberto Morillas
Release Year: 2007
Category: Floral woody
Reviewed Batch: circa 2009
From personal collection.