It’s pretty obvious by now that I have just a little bit of a sweet tooth when it comes to perfume. So, is it any surprise that I would go for a fragrance featuring marshmallow as a note? Actually, it’s a surprise to me since I’m not the biggest fan of eating marshmallows (I prefer my hot cocoa without them). I thought Dolce & Gabbana’s Intense might finally be one scent that’s too gooey and sweet even for me, but that’s not the case yet.
Dolce & Gabbana launched their original eau de parfum for women, the aptly named Pour Femme, in 1992. They then launched a reformulated edition of it in 2012. Intense is meant to be, one assumes, a more intensely concentrated version of the newer Pour Femme. But Intense is a curious choice of name for this flanker because I don’t find it to be very intense.
Intense is the most consistently smooth composition from opening note to the last hint of the dry down. The mandarin gives a nice bit of zest to the opening. While I don’t usually care for neroli, I’m glad it’s here to elevate the composition and add a touch of the aromatic. Otherwise, Intense is a creamy marshmallow confection with the sandalwood adding some necessary stability and depth.
Intense is beautifully blended, and comes off as just the right amount of sweet for me. But, does this warm, comforting, dessert-like sweetness really give off an intensity? For me it doesn’t, and the most shocking lack of intensity comes by way of the fact that I only get around four hours of wear time out of this.
So, Intense remains a bit of a puzzle for me. There’s a good chance that it’s just my skin chemistry, but there’s an obvious disconnect between the idea of the fragrance and what I actually sense on my skin. I wouldn’t describe Pour Femme itself as a terribly intense fragrance either. There’s a strong red berry note that doesn’t appeal to me, and the marshmallow isn’t as delectably blended, making the fragrance a bit more sheer. However, (somewhat annoyingly!) it does last much longer on my skin: six plus hours.
In spite of myself and the mediocre wear time, I prefer Intense to the regular Pour Femme. In fact, I’m a little bit entranced by Intense. When I say it’s smooth, I don’t mean that it’s like silk. It’s not light, nor does it seem to project a sheen (is this perhaps where the concentrated intensity comes in?). Intense is rather like the most luxurious winter coat you can imagine, one that allows you to show off some style, as well as keep comfortingly warm. All I can say is, I’m ready for winter.
Dolce & Gabbana’s Intense is available from Sephora (so is Pour Femme if you’re interested in comparing) which is also where I got my sample.
Image and info about the notes are both from Fragrantica.