Sometimes we feel butch, sometimes we feel femme. Bursting pulp and peppery herbalisms create a soft-hard & hard-soft structure that is oh-so-irresistibly free to be, you and me. Neroli’s searing acidity cracks through grapefruit’s subtly sizzling surface of grapefruit, creating a golden, liquid mushroom cloud of citric intensity. Just as neroli and grapefruit billow upwards, basil lands amidst these theatrical elements and gently deflates their acidic explosion. Basil is sweetly piquant, a remarkably green, delicious moment that softens some of the sear of neroli and grapefruit. Nevertheless, these two elements transform basil as it changes them, unleashing the lush, fecund format of this leaf that we only see at high temperatures. Similarly, black pepper is remade in the sunny glare of grapefruit and neroli: initially shimmering with a terse, spicy energy, black pepper grows creamy and remarkably floral when washed in tartness. Sandalwood is the solid base upon which this spectrum-running sent see-saws. An excitingly green-woodsy warmth registers as the verdant afterglow at the settling of this scent. Sandalwood embodies so many of the qualities that preceded it: refreshing, tangy, peppery and dry, the crackling wit it emanates also aptly absorbs and adapts all notes neatly into skin.
In total, Butch Femme is a delightfully uncountable fragrance that is at once remarkably direct while it simultaneously is magically evasive and non-linear. Creamy yet crisp, luminous yet deftly shadowed, Butch Femme tilts either end of the gamut toward one another to meet, in a beguiling, gloriously irresolute conclusion. We thank CARLEN for exploding (and celebrating) our dualities, one scent at a time.