Parfums MDCI; Invasion Barbare

Notes: Grapefruit, bergamot, violet leaves, white thyme, cardamom, lavender, ginger, cedarwood, vanilla and musk

When I saw reviewers at Luckyscent and Basenotes comparing Invasion Barbare to Jicky, I marked it immediately as something to try. And it’s true, the sharp citrus opening here definitely recalls the famous Guerlain fragrance. I actually wish the spicy/astringent opening notes lasted longer. It’s an intoxicating blend of citrus notes with ginger and cardamom. But within a few minutes, Invasion Barbare transforms into a smooth blend of lavender, cedar and vanilla. Seriously, I cannot emphasize enough how smooth this composition is. I would drink it if I could.

But the really striking thing about this scent for me is the texture. If a perfume can feel like something, this one is like crushed velvet. This is a soft, somewhat sheer fragrance that wears close to the skin. But don’t worry, it’s definitely persistent. The lavender note lingers long into wear time, adding a little kick to the cedar & vanilla.  Invasion Barbare has a confidence about it, a quiet resolve. The Napoleonic bust on the bottle is no accident. This is the fragrance to wear while sitting on a velvet throne, surveying your empire.

Parfums MDCI pushes Invasion Barbare as a masculine scent and, while I can see why they would (that dry lavender and cedar), I love wearing it for myself. Gendered fragrance is kind of a silly idea to me anyway. It really comes down to skin chemistry and personal taste, not marketing, right? Regardless, I see Invasion Barbare as perfectly wearable for a woman.

Parfums MDCI is a pricey brand, there’s no getting around it. The bottles with the resin busts go as high as $600. Clearly these perfumes are not something you would impulse-buy. Knowing this, Parfums MDCI offers a sampling program on their website. It’s noteworthy that their sample bottles are 12 ml, allowing for plenty of opportunities to test each fragrance. Luckyscent also offers a sample package of eight of Parfums MDCI’s offerings.

Invasion Barbare is a gorgeous, regal scent. It’s something that’s definitely worth experiencing. I can’t say I’m ready to shell out for the big fancy bottle myself just yet, but I’ll definitely be ordering another sample to keep on hand. You know, just in case I need to smell nice while sitting on my throne.

Invasion Barbare: $250 for 60 ml //$375 for the resin bust edition

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