Incognito by Rouge Bunny Rouge

This changeling of a scent is a bit of everything all at once but, rather than being muddled, the result is a fascinating chimera which changes as it wears, making it seem almost alive.

Listed notes

Pink peppercorn, pimento berry oil, plum, ylang-ylang, osmanthus, orris butter, patchouli, suede, musk, heliotrope.

The brand

Rouge Bunny Rouge are an acclaimed cult beauty brand that do a whole range of beauty products, from mascara to micellar water. They describe their approach as neo-Victorian and favour whimsy and escape from the mundane in their branding and products.

Incognito comes from the Provenance Tales collection, which are all unisex and concentrated eau de parfums. The brand also do a line called Fragrant Confections which are more feminine in tone and intended market.

Top notes

Incognito begins with a bright, zingy and enlivening pepper introduction. Pink pepper is a wonderfully energetic ingredient in perfumery and here it practically flies off the skin with energy and verve. It is spicy, but in a warm and un-intimidating way.

Under the spiciness you also get a vein of fruitiness which is sweet and a little jammy; the ripeness of late-summer plums. It’s an intriguing addition to the mix here because plums smell very much as if they have a texture; it’s sort of rough but fleshy, dry but juicy, tartness mellowing into syrupy sweetness. The plum contrasts with the peppery opening notes but the resulting symphony chimes beautifully and harmoniously. And this is the first indication that you are in the hands of a really rather adept perfumer.

As the perfume really settles, a third and again seemingly contradictory note is introduced: orris butter. There is a violet-like hint to the end of the top notes as they mellow into the heart of Incognito, but there is also an ever so slightly watery, rootiness about it too. This moment in the wear of the fragrance does smell as if it is referencing something that has been freshly dug up out of waterlogged soil. It would be misleading to say that this powdery, almost creamy scent smells watery as such, but there is just enough of a hint of it here for it to intrigue and delight.

Heart notes

Once the perfume has settled, you really get a sense that you are wearing something sophisticated, complicated and interesting. Incognito is a very appropriately named scent as it really doesn’t reveal everything at once, and it changes hugely from moment to moment.

A beautiful, gentle leathery note starts to creep into the heart. You don’t even really notice it emerging until it is there, but it is handled with such a light touch and is all the more delightful because of that.

The fruity notes continue as well, becoming a little sweeter and more apricot-like, but the whole perfume shifts as you try and pin down exactly what it is you are smelling. The line between one ingredient and the next is blurred and the impression of wearing the scent is very much as if you are cloaked in a galaxy of scent that subtly changes as you move. It’s completely fascinating to experience. Perhaps a bit like one of those mood rings so favoured by adolescents in the 1990s, the scent appears to shift as your temperature and mood do.

Base notes

The leathery suede intensifies a little more in the base, but never becomes overwhelming, indeed that is true for all the facets of the scent – they are all held at a similar level of intensity and one never dominates the others. The ylang-ylang adds a beautiful delicate floral with a creamy edge to the overall bouquet and the heliotrope adds a vanilla/almond hint right at the back of an inhale. Eventually, once the perfume was in its final throes, we were left with these lingering on our skin and it was very pleasant indeed.

In summary, Incognito is a bit spicy, a bit fruity, a bit creamy, slightly powdery, has a watery note, is gently leathery, and smells a bit rooty. Difficult to wrap your brain (and nose) around, right? You’ll understand what we mean when you smell it though. It’s a technicolour dream coat of a scent that seems to fit each wearer slightly differently, but no less flatteringly. And it’s definitely very interesting because of that.

The other stuff

Incognito doesn’t project very far from the skin and it isn’t a loud or shouty perfume – someone else needs to get quite close to tell you are wearing it. The longevity of the scent also isn’t the strongest, it was significantly diminished by lunchtime each time we tested it. Those things both said, the changeable, chameleon-like quality of the scent really makes it both widely appealing and utterly fascinating and those endowments are significant enough to make this a scent that is definitely worth checking out if you are looking for something unusual and a little off the beaten path.

We felt that this was genuinely a unisex perfume with wide appeal that could be comfortably worn by all genders.

Buy it

A sample of Incognito was very kindly gifted to us by one of our followers – thank you.

You can buy Incognito along with a selection of the Rouge Bunny Rouge cosmetics and beauty products from Bloom Perfumery London. A 50ml EdP bottle of Incognito will set you back £95, or £150 for 100ml.

You can also buy both the cosmetics and perfumes from the Rouge Bunny Rouge website.  Here, 50ml of Incognito will cost you €129 or €175 for the 100ml bottle (excluding shipping).

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