Still Life in Rio by Olfactive Studio

This perfume is a firecracker! Lively, playful, but sultry and brooding at the same time. It really is a corker. Energetic citrus mixed with leather so enticing it makes my mouth water.

The brand

Olfactive Studio is the brand behind this fragrance. It’s a young French company founded in 2011 by  Celine Verleure. The company does a range of excellent and interesting fragrances and candles. That’s the fairly standard part.

The non standard part is that they position themselves at the intersection between photography and perfume, saying that “Photography and perfume capture the moment, and bring back experiences from the past.”

True. Sort of. Okay, I’m still with you, go on…

“To imagine a sensorial, intimate and poetic relationship between images and odors is to reconcile temporal spaces.”

Nope you lost me.

According to their website, the perfume’s creator gets a photo and then imagines the fragrance around that. Which is fine, take inspiration where you can get it, but they seem to overstep that a bit and make it seem like you have to look at a photo of Rio every time you want to wear the perfume. Even that I wouldn’t mind, but they haven’t put the photo on the bottle so really, once the perfume is bought, you don’t ever have to see that picture again.

My absolute favourite line from a guff-filled description is “The perfumes are angels, they have no sex but they have a soul”. Spat my tea out when I read that.

Anyway, let’s talk about the scent itself, which is WAY better than a hyperbole filled website.

Top  notes

Still Life in Rio is a delightful scent and oh the top notes in this fragrance! They just leap off your skin as soon as you spray it. Bright, energetic citrus, lemon and yuzu notes. I get a hit of sherbet and it is bright, sparkling and fizzy. Not unlike the experience of filling your mouth full of lemon sherbet really.

The website also claims mint, but I don’t get that at all in this perfume. I’m going to try and find someone who does bring that out when they wear it!

Heart notes

The perfume is fairly linear, not totally, but it’s not as transformative as some so the citrus lingers here. The heart notes warm up quickly into the sweetness of sherry, sugar, and a warming, gingery tang. On some people a peppery-ness is brought out but my chemistry seems to really calm this down.

Base notes

I still get citrus in the base notes of this perfume, but it is complemented, deepened and enriched with green oak and leather notes and it is seriously wonderful.The sort of scent that you will keep sniffing all day and if you walked past someone wearing it, you would fancy them immediately!

The other stuff

The longevity of this perfume is excellent. It’s still bright by lunch and even remains until dinner most days. I can easily see this working well for both men and women.This is a very sexy scent. If you wear it and fall in love with someone, don’t say I didn’t warn you. It is that damn good!

The bottle is very simple and elegant, the packaging the same. It betrays a level of quiet sophistication that you could well imagine on the dressing table of some luxury, Scandinavian designed mansion. It has that air of easy sophistication about it, clean lines and effortlessly chic.

Still Life in Rio is available direct from Olfactive Studios online or from the always excellent Bloom Perfumery, London. It is priced at around £74-76 for 50ml which although not cheap, I definitely think it’s worth investing in if you like it.


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