Paris Hilton Heiress for Her (2006) {Perfume Review & Musings}


Celebrity figures are often perceived as being vapid. Especially if their talent is mostly image-related. On her site, Hilton writes that she's "an expert at attracting attention," a professional skill in her industry. If the celebrity then is known to love pink, bling and is a platinum blonde, her perfumes are probably going to smell pink and vapid too...

After reading a series of public Internet confessionals issued about how Paris Hilton Eau de Parfum aces it as a fragrance for some who are not Hilton devotees, I was reminded of my own instant-like moment for a Paris Hilton fragrance at Target. Which one was it already? I couldn't remember as I was quickly urged to put back the fragrance on its shelf, lest my personal reputation might get tainted by it. I just remembered it was coded pink. Paris Hilton EDP or Heiress were my guesses - it was Heiress.

Heiress by Paris Hilton is an unlikely favorite perfume for me too, just like Paris Hilton EDP is to some others. But it just smells particularly and quite simply very good. It's got great sillage and diffusion.

The fragrance starts with an oderdose of fruit platter served on a vinyl tablecloth made of ethyl maltol and vanilla and while this sounds terrible in principle, the scent reveals a sure sense of restraint and subtltety in the midst of a firework display of bad taste. It smells a bit like a David LaChapelle picture looks, which I love.


From the superficially kitsch introduction follows the more durable impression that the fragrance composition by perfumer Steve de Mercado of Fragrance Resources is greatly balanced with discreet touches of sophistication here and there expressing unmistakable ladylike demeanor. You even discover an old-school flavor to it thanks to the secret use of a star anise note (llicium verum) which as a cook I am guessing must be part of many a vintage, oakmoss-rich formulae. Each time, I have an opportunity to inhale the sculptural glistening and matte rowel-shaped spice, it smells of an old Germaine Cellier oakmoss base.

As Heiress soon reveals, its vision is not just a dream of a strawberry shortcake and pear compote. The Eau de Parfum becomes delectably decadent in a desirable manner. This means that it smells of visually repulsive things like rotten peaches, banana popsicle melted to death in its own puddle - and even of lashings of creamy Durian pulp exhausted by the summer heat. Add to the mix some dainty powder for the nose. It is a mess but a seductive tropical mess. The star aniseed is a life saver.

In the novel Les mystères de Paris by Eugène Süe, there is at one point the description of a mythical very poor man's dish made up of all the remnants of the day served at a particular inn of underground Paris. In it, are thrown every scraps that have been left on the plates by all the already impoverished patrons earlier in the day. Working down the food chain, that dish is meant for the poorest of the poor becoming fabulous in its capacity to symbolize trashed humanity.

To some extent, Heiress is like that. It is literally a cheap mess of fruits with Chantilly and not from or for Eton, but from Malibu and for malls. It smells awefully strong of Banana Split and Champagne dabbed on earlobes, and yet it's an interesting and winsome spicy fruity-floral at the same time with a touch of old-school chypré glamour and money - like a 17th generation descendant of Mitsouko by Guerlain - of course, it's called Heiress for a reason. I go back to David La Chapelle to stress that here you have that same kind of outrageous neon motifs mixed with a sense of balance and classicism. It works and it smells great.

Fragrance notes: passion fruit, orange, juicy peach, mimosas and champagne. The heart ticks with accords of star jasmine, Tiare lily, delightfully sweet ylang-ylang, honeysuckle and grenadine. The base is composed of violet leaf, Tahiti Tonka and light wood.

Henry de Monclin designed the bottle.

Related Posts

Leave a Comment