Musc Tonkin is a limited edition from PG. I was spending a lovely afternoon at Scentbar and happened to spray some of Musc Tonkin on paper. WOW. On paper I got an explosion of super skanky spicy yumminess which lit up a definite pleasure center in my brain. I asked for a bottle without spraying on my skin, so sure was I that I would love this one. Later on that night, I sprayed MT on my skin and was truly surprised. Instead of the big, statement-making skank fest a la Absolue pour Le Soir I was expecting, I got a very light "marine" note. Yes, you got that right. Aquatic. mmmm. I could still smell something going on under all the ozone, but where was it? The next couple of days I continued to wear it, and on day 3, I finally got it. This is a definite shape-shifter of a scent. Meant to be an interpretation of the animalic musc revered for centuries but no longer available in raw source, the notes have not been listed. The ad copy is lovely, but not really informative. Reviews on several blogs have been overall excellent (Perfume Posse's in particular is highly entertaining).
On my skin, the marine note remains very present. But in a truly salty air way. I live at the beach and am surrounded by salt air, so this is a beautiful companion to my immediate surroundings. It's got skank and spice, sure, but both are gentle and almost fleeting. Not short-lived, as I could still smell it on my skin 8 hours after application, and on clothes for days, but it's a scent that plays hide and seek. One second I couldn't smell it all and feared anosmia to some of its musc components; the next there would be this warm "breath" or exhalation from my skin with a definite indolic core but all of this beautiful sophisticated air to it. The black laquer of a Yves St Laurent-inspired interior is what this scent very much recalls for me. There is a true sense of history being captured in this scent, as well as the feeling of wearing what is truly a work of perfumery genius. The execution of this gem could have been (and has been) heavy -handed and a caricature of past glories (Opium, Obsession, Magie Noire..). Instead we get a stunning interpretation of a work inspired by the past, but very present and relevant today.
Wearing it is a wonderful journey and, while it is soft enough for work environment, I would never wear it to work. For one, it's much too intimate of a scent. It's also a scent I want to enjoy and keep paying attention to; which I can't do at work.
I said I'd buy this again. Yes... but I was lucky enough to buy the last bottle at Scentbar. I'm not sure more bottles are available. It may be such a success that PG decides this won't be such a limited edition after all.
For anyone who has the ability to try this beauty, do so.