First, I must protest the use of Charlotte Gainsbourg in this ad. You might have Anna Wintour wrapped around your delicate little fingers, Charlotte, but you can’t fool me. You and I both know that you are famous for one reason and one reason only: your mother is Jane Birkin, herself only famous for having really great bangs. As far as I’m concerned, that’s even less legitimate than Kim Kardashian. Hollywood is chock-full of winsome brunettes- what, Zooey Deschanel wasn’t available?- so let’s not reward nepotism here.
Balenciaga Paris is a thoroughly modern violet, with no mustiness at all and only a hint of creaminess. Stripped of these traditional effects of violet fragrances, we are left with a perfume that smells rather like Sweet Tarts.
This isn’t necessarily a negative, since I love me some Sweet Tarts, but it is a bit puzzling in light of the “sophisticated”, “refined” tone of Balenciaga’s PR. Paris also smells synthetic to me, and not in a fun, intentional way. This is a pretty perfume, but I unfortunately don’t find it to be the elegant fragrance that I was expecting. Now, if you want a great violet perfume named Paris, I recommend the YSL original.