Parisian perfumer Gerald Ghislain is looking to the past for his fragrance company's future. Histoires de Parfums, his line of scents steeped in bygone days, has just touched down in the states. Named after the year great historical figures were born—1740 for the Marquis de Sade and 1828 for the pioneering author Jules Verne—Ghislain mixed each one with the characteristics of its namesake. Casanova's 1725, for example, is a mixture of sweet citrus and a more bedroom-bound smoky amber. As novel as the idea may be, these are some serious spritzes, so go easy lover boy. Contrary to what you did in high school, you should not spray cologne directly on your clothes. It should react with your skin. Not your shirt. $185, at Beauty Cafe and Takashimaya, New York
- The top note of a fragrance, which you smell initially, fades in just 15 minutes.
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