Cannabis Rose by Fresh is the latest fragrance by the originally Boston-based brand, which started out by selling triple-milled soaps from France. It is the second perfume by Fresh featuring a cannabis or Marijuana note; Cannabis Rose is seen as the feminine counterpart to Cannabis Santal. It was created by perfumer Jérôme Epinette (see also Isabel Derroisné Ilaya, Jovoy Poudré and Fougère ) in collaboration with Fresh founder Lev Glazman.
Perfumes have not infrequently played with the lure of the forbidden adding taboo notes to their compositions like Champagne in Caron Bain de Champagne during the Prohibition period, a metaphorical suggestion of poppy overdose in the 1970s Opium by Yves Saint Laurent, Absinthe more recently as a remnant of 19th century Bohemian culture, and finally post-hippie period Cannabis in the Fresh perfumes. Mentioning those ingredients may awaken us a bit from a blasé slumber as a multitude of new perfumes try to capture the public's attention - these notes or accords are unusual and at the same time familiar and titillating - or it may, less sensationally so, attract our attention to the possibility of an harmonious pairing of notes, rose and cannabis, which might produce an interesting perfume.
Well, nothing of anything described above really happens; Cannabis Rose is obviously not playing the card of the devil nor is it trying to be "interesting" and controversial. It is however a very pretty fragrance, even exquisite at times, like a cleaned-up rose chypre perfume whose earthy moss and rose would have been purified, made more transparent and aquatic by being macerated in a glass of Vodka, with just a "larme" (tear) as the French say, of (fantasy) white vanilla Kahlua.
Cannabis Rose: The Perfume
The principal notes you notice at first are rose, patchouli, cannabis, vanilla and "oakmoss". Sephora classifies the scent as a mossy woody scent. It feels like a chypre with a re-worked or new-style earthy, forest-y base to suggest the chypre lineage as oakmoss has seen legal constraints put on its immoderate use. The chypre connection becomes even more palpable in the drydown as a succulent note of sweet ambery labdanum amplifies, which together with the patchouli and the rose conjures up Clinique Aromatics Elixir. What was at first a vaguely familiar sensation becomes thus readable in the end. It is a purer, whiter, vodka-like Aromatics Elixir.....
The perfume showcases a well-defined plump Bulgarian rose on the one hand and an earthy contrapuntal cannabis accord with patchouli as well as a discreet vanillic accord. The pomegranate flower note in as much as it smells like other pomegranate notes we have smelt before, adds a dark vinous and fruity nuance but without coloring the whole perfume. The correspondence of rose and vanilla, the way they echo each other in the composition is delicate, very well done, evoking the perfection of an Italian vanilla ice-cream swirl on a cone eaten in an 18th century palatial room stamped with precious rose motifs on the walls. The treatment is dainty. The dark chocolate note is subdued and may be perceived foremost through its vanilla facet.
The particularly lovely creaminess of rose and vanilla is given an understated effect of transparency from an aquatic accord - peony perhaps - that seems to make the perfume more luminous, while the cannabis, patchouli and citrus seem to rest on the crest of this main sensation; the delightful, near cloud-like creaminess of the light vanilla impression is a highlight in the perfume.
The Bulgarian rose emerges better after a while seeming to wrap around the perfume with a large natural silken petal while before it was more stylized evoking a precious rose embroidery. It is a rose with metallic, ferrous accents mellowed down by rounder notes. The earthy, medicinal counterpoint of cannabis feels warm rather than cold despite the whiff of camphor. There is also a faint tea scent emanating from the composition - the Oolong note. The patchouli is both clean and earthy. Finally, the drydown feels delicious thanks to the sweet vegetal amber and the Aromatics Elixir quote.
Cannabis Rose is about a crystalline, fresh rendition of rose and earthy notes.
Top notes: Bulgarian rose, pomegranate flower, bergamot; heart notes: sheer jasmine, cannabis accord, dark chocolate; base notes: white musk, patchouli, oolong tea.
Cannabis Rose: The Body Cream
The cream offers a great medium-thick texture which is very hydrating without being greasy. It gets absorbed quickly. The perfume was faithfully reproduced.
Layering it with the Eau de Parfum makes the scent overall feel more voluptuous, rounder, and closer to the body. The metallic nuances are less perceptible for example. It will help your perfume last longer as well.
From the ad copy: "an extra-rich formula which absorbs easily and is fortified with rich seed oils of cannabis, rosehip, meadowfoam, and jojoba as well as restorative shea butter and antioxidant-rich vitamins C and e."
Cannabis Rose: The Shower and Bath Gel
A big rave. This gel is simply wonderful. It is very hydrating and softening thanks to the Cannabis seed oil contained in it, which is said to be "ultra-hydrating" and "rich in essential fatty acids, omega 3 and omega 9, and helps to maintain the elasticity and suppleness of the skin." I was impressed with the result. Your skin looks positively rejuvenated, rosy, clean, supple, with a natural glow. I would recommend it to people who are always looking for a fix for their dry skins, men included.
The scent is discreet. It does not smell of soap.The gel has also deodorizing properties. On top of it all, it is relaxing.
Apart from the Cannabis seed oil, it also has rosehip seed oil, shea butter, and vitamins C and E.
This is beauty-staple material in my eye. I would love to see a face gel and a shampoo offering the same qualities.
The good news is you can have all three products for only $45. Available at Fresh, Sephora....