Other reviewers have expressed their surprise at the gorgeousness of Imogen Rose and I'm in exactly the same boat. I expected a disappointingly watered-down, mass-marketable rose, but Imogen has more in common, scentwise, with Creed's Fleur de The Rose Bulgare, Lutens' Sa Majeste de Rose or Guerlain's Nahema than the likes of Paul Smith Rose, Valentino's Rock n' Rose or even Stella. It smells like it should cost a fortune, yet it doesn't.
Imogen is a powdery antique rose with a touch of honey and musk. The reviewer who called it a 'dirty' rose is spot on, and I mean that in the nicest possible way. The combination of raw, fleshy, decadent sensuality and old-world quirky primness just works, and I can't explain why. There's a powdery freshness in the top notes, reminiscent of lavender or those Parma Violet candies from years ago. I detect a distant similarity to Vivienne Westwood's Boudoir, only Imogen is heavier on the actual rose.
I wish more department store fragrances were like this, but nowadays you only see - or rather, smell - this level of creativity from the artisans and old-school houses. I know Lush's packaging isn't the greatest - it's non-existent, for the most part - but I love the chic little black bottles they've used for the Gorilla range, with their slightly sinister, arcane potion-holder air.
I tried Imogen Rose in spray form, and I found it strikingly, uncannily realistic. I swear to god I could smell the pollen and leaves of a rose bush - like ChildOfTheMoon said, it's much 'dirtier' than traditional rose scents. I honestly wanted to like it for its originality alone. Unfortunately, I'm not a rose person, and I still found it too sickly for my tastes. I also found the 'pollen' smell a bit overpowering.
I'd give it two stars for smell alone, but it gets an extra star for its originality.
When I opened my sample vial of Imogen Rose I almost gagged, but don't be fooled by the way it smells in the bottle. On the skin it is a soft dewy rose to the very life, heady and voluptuous but not at all sickly. This true rose scent lasts on me for maybe half an hour, then it settles into something completely different - bubblegum, or marshmallows, something sugared and powdery and vaguely edible. Not deeply unpleasant but a disappointment nonetheless. I would find myself reapplying constantly if I were to buy this, just to get that wonderful opening back again. Perhaps I'll buy another sample size and do just that, but...
I should note that the Lush sample vials have a design flaw which means that if they get hot (in a car glove compartment for instance) the cap just comes right out and whatever is in your bag at the time will get drenched in perfume. This happened to me! Luckily this is not a sickly scent and having a rose scented bag is not a disaster, but if it had happened with any of Lush's more heavy perfumes I think I would have cried. Be warned...
Oh my gracious this is beautiful-not at ALL what I was expecting.I guess I expected a fussy rose scent but I actually don't get much rose-at least not in the traditional sense.I have the solid perfume-not sure if there is much difference between it and the liquid.It smelled a little odd before I put it on(maybe because it was so not-rosey) but once I did the first thing I smelled was honey(??!!)then I realized it must have been the tonka-ambrette seed combo.I smelled floral underneath-like the deepest,darkest,least powdery rose ever.Definitely not a tea rose type of smell.It smells so familiar to me-maybe because it has the undercurrent 'Lush' smell....will edit when I figure out what it smells like.
Overall on me it is a honeyed rose-not much throw but lasts forever and had me wanting to eat my arm.I think even people who don't like rose scents would like this.....lovely:)
Imogen Rose is a rose scent from tip to toe. By that I mean that besides the red rose bud, I can also smell the subdued green stems with leaves (represented with bergamot and vetivert notes); but most of all I smell musty roots and moist soil (a frivolous portion of ambrette seed and orris root) In fact, this fragrance is more about roots than flowers, focussing on the dark, earthy aspect of the rose. Although not listed, I'm pretty sure there's also clove in this. I am afraid that someone who prefers a more straightforward, traditional interpretation of a rose might find this fragrance too "dirty". But to me Imogen Rose is a pleasant surprise and I recommend it to all fans of natural smelling, earthy scents that are neither simple nor fleeting. This is a unique rose fragrance; earthy, warm and slightly powdery with a medium-to-strong potency.
Although they don't share many notes, I 'd compare Imogen Rose to Karma because of its earthy, hippie attitude. Both are unusual, outstanding creations. Imogen Rose has the potential to be passionately hated and loved just like Karma. For me personally, this is love.
No animal testing. No animal ingredients. Suitable for vegans.