An other-worldly, balsamic floral, Dirty Rose by Heretic Parfums at Twisted Lily is an erotic novel for the senses. Cumin, black pepper and coriander establish delicious dichotomy at the outset of this scent, making it clear to us that Dirty Rose, like it’s siblings Dirty Ginger and Dirty Neroli, is a sensuous study in contrasts. Cumin is a sheer golden heat, creamy and animal, while black pepper’s sizzle is refreshingly cool. Coriander is satin smooth, green and mysterious, an evasive herb that slides seamlessly into the green of rose, indicating strong stems and supple yet spiky leaves. Rose damask and rose de mai compliment one another even as they maintain their individual presence: rose damask is darker, sweeter and almost bitter (think loukhum) while rose de mai shimmers like shiny (pink) satin, petals magnified by dew. Artemisia acts as the bitters in the superfloral cocktail of Dirty Rose’s heart, drops of savory that slowly unfurl their potency.
Benzoin shines and shimmers like a softly polished brass against the dim, rose gold of labdanum: together these smoldering resins warm our skin, while patchouli dampens and cools just our body temperature threatens to jump off the rails. Agarwood hints at a panther-like prowl, while ambrette furnishes us with a downy, subtle musk. A fragrance that conveys sex, leather and mystery, Dirty Rose is at once immediately understandable and eternally quixotic. Wear it and dare to name the visions it conjures.