I have always been enchanted by the romance of YSL’s Opium, but have found the perfume a bit too cloying and old-worldly (well, it was launched in 1977 and times have changed a bit since then!). So, it’s great to hear that the cult classic is getting a makeover in the form of Belle d’Opium, a scent born “from a thousand inspirations”.
Like its predecessor, Belle d’Opium is an oriental fragrance, but with less of an amber-like effect than the original. Mixed by perfumers Honorine Blanc and Alberto Morillas, it’s based on notes like Casablanca lily, sandalwood, gardenia, white pepper, jasmine absolute and narguile accord, making it fresher and more wearable.
The differences stem from the fact that while Opium was about a woman addicted to her fragrance, with Belle d’Opium the story turns to a woman who is herself addictive. The video adverts are fronted by the French actress Mélanie Thierry, who sets forth a captivating performance inspired by the Dance of Salomé and choreographed by Akram Khan. The entire sequence is directed by Romain Gavras and set to music by Nitin Sawhney.