It is fascinating that, at the times when there was a high demand for musical instruments, even a small town like Pressburg (now Bratislava) had two piano factories, in 1856 Herr Joachim Friedrich Schwarzlose, a piano maker and the father of eleven, thought about his possibilities to feed them and give them something to start with, and decided to trade piano production for perfume production. Well, not only perfume, at the beginning he opened a pharmacy, where he produced cosmetics and perfumes only as a part of the merchendise. Who knows whether it was really much more profitable business in itself, or whether there was simply too much competition in Berlin’s pianos?
In any case, the move was obviously good. The business took over and perfumes became a fate for the family. Son Max separated under his own name, another son bought a competing company A.Heister & Co, the parent company J.F. Schwarzlose & Söhne took over the perfume company Treu & Nuglisch. More and more descendants were dedicated to the perfumery industry, either within the company or under their own names, so we have a small collection of companies like Franz Schwarzlose, Paul Schwarzlose, Eduard Schwarzlose …
Following the death of the company founder, his son-in-law Paul Köthner, Clara’s husband, took over the management of their company, and their son Ernst expanded the company to almost the entire world, even to the Chinese imperial court. The brand was even changed for a while to the “Hohenzollern-Parfümerie Schwarzlose” as a supplier of the Prussian court. The company was just doing well. She successfully survived the First World War, but the second almost became fatal. The fascists shot the then director Werner Köthner, the factory was bombed and it just seemed to be the end. But after Nazism defeat the rest of the family recovered and re-built the company. It worked in its original form until 1976.
In 2012, creative director Lutz Herrmann, perfumer Véronique Nyberg and Tamás Tagscherer decided to pick up the forgotten treasure, build on the tradition of the famous house and revitalize the most famous fragrances. So there were rediscovered scents like 1A-33, Treffpunkt 8 Uhr, Trance, but also new scents like Rausch or Zeitgeist.
An open spicebox combined with a mercilessly medical tone. Something between iodine throat spray, swedish drops, and that old-fashioned black candy flakes in a small sliding tin box that I don’t even remember whether they were supposed to heal cold or stomach, but grandparents always had them at home. So i do not know. The perfume was supposed to be a tribute to the developing automotive industry and the elegant driver ladies who tame these infernal machines. That would imply that at that time all the drivers were either cold or had stomach problems. Or cold with upset stomach. After all, those open bonnets of the first cars rumbling on roads still mostly used by carriages probably leave not much to expect. Well, the spice is slowly disappearing, the healing potion smell holds on as an English nurse to a teapot. The name of the fragrance – which is an old tag indicator of the Berlin city – is projected into a blast of smoke from the exhaust (no, there were no DPF filters at the time), but fortunately it quickly passes like a convertible driving around a garden sprayer. Then the smell tame a little into the form of unsweet licorice lozenges, which over time is replaced by a slightly smoky white musk. This is just a fragrance for a strong character, that’s it.
The fragrance is issued for the centenary of the Chic scent of 1920, the name 20/20 is to refer to the years 1920 and 2020. And what is it? Completely different from what I had imagined roaring twenties …
Tender, soft, soothing Bulgarian rose oil. Total antidepressant. And it keeps and keeps and keeps … It’s basically soliflor, so it doesn’t evolve somehow, just slowly turns translucent…
Now this is a completely different rose, cheerful, bright, lying somewhere at the dressing table with a pink powder and some sweets. Miss is going to a party. As she leaves the room, the evening sun rests on a rose on a polished wooden table – at this stage it resembles a little Cabaret from Grés. Finally, late in the night’s the resident returns home. Breathless, a little sweaty, perfume and powder got some beating… some animal tones appear, but the rose doesn’t fade. Nice. I would have complained a little that such a thing has been here X times, and surely it was, however, for A) this is a replica of a scent of about 100 years old, and for B) while it was common, it is not any more. Rose fragrances, which are available today, are conceived differently, something like this should be searched nowdays perhaps at producers of oriental fragrances.
The fragrance is to be a tribute to the cult Berghain club in Berlin.
Polished wood, liquer, unventilated air … a little stale air from the underground space. The clubs probably don’t change too much. The magic of a moment where many people at same time and place, together with the music, the expectations brought forward, the determination to dig everything out of the evening, will create an incredibly emotional charged atmosphere that can make the next day headache much bigger than alcohol.
Here the impression is created predominantly by the oily-woody tones of cypriol. Cypriol, nagarmotha or as we call it sachet. Sometimes also called walnut grass, which is a fairly nice and fitting description, although it smells more of a nut and wood than grass, but it really is a kind of grass. It smells oily, woody, with a pleasant walnut undertone. Here is a beautifully complemented patchouli (even with a little stinch typical for it) and oudom, which strongly supports the impression of old wood, and adds a bit of animality. It’s just a full night club at it’s best.
Although it may not sound the most attractive, the result is a beautiful, strong, in my opinion explicitly masculine scent. Perhaps not everyone dares, but the result will be unmistakable (here I would like to add that it will be unmistakable in the right way, if you we not overdo the amount, sometimes less is more 😊)
When I tried the Zeitgeist for the first time, with just quickly in the perfumery, I placed it in my head into a “mown grass” drawer, with a little remark “extremely successful”. Now trying it properly, I have to say that I quite underestimated it. Yes, it’s a fresh green smell, but it’s not just mowed grass, it’s mowed grass to the power of X, it’s just greenness in a bottle, neither spring nor summer, rather something in between when it’s still explicitly fresh, just gaining momentum.
It is probably achieved by seaweed extract, which in this case – at least on me – is not, but really not at all salty. Simply chlorophyll in pure form. Any other ingredients did not have a chance on my skin. Okay, so maybe a calone, but I don’t think it can fix that intense green. But I can be wrong. In any case, I like it a lot and occationally something like this would get really handy.