Fragrance review: Elizabeth Arden Untold Absolu EDP

A little while back Elizabeth Arden launched Untold, a multifaceted creamy white floral with fruity top notes like pear and blackcurrant.  They’ve now brought out another version of the scent, Untold Absolu, which is a more intense, more sensual interpretation.

Prettiest press pack
The scent arrived with a bottle of Lothian Vineyards Pinot Noir, my favourite wine from the decadent lunch dinner. Tres spoilicious!

Again, you’re looking at a creamy white fruity floral with blackcurrant and bergamot top notes but this time the pear (which is never a favourite note of mine) gets the boot in favour of red plum which lends the scent a slightly sweeter,  juiciness. As for the white floral heart, the original’s jasmine remains but the gardenia has been swapped out for rosewater. Again, this lends it a certain luscious, ‘greenness’ that its predecessor didn’t have. While the first Untold, to me, was a slightly arid and flat, Absolu is ‘wet’, juicy and warm. The latter comes in when the base notes pop up – creamy wood, vanilla and resinous benzoin. (For the record, the first Untold featured a woody-musky-patchouli-amber base.)

In short, you can tell that Untold and Untold Absolu are sisters, but the latter is most definitely the prettier of the too. (Don’t worry Untold, you’ll still end up marrying a charming neurologist and travelling the world by way of compensation.) Also, the difference is pretty marked in that I wouldn’t personally wear the first Untold, but have been happy to occasionally spritz on Absolu and find myself liking it more and more. It’s a lovely scent for ‘in between’ season days and ‘any season’ nights – the kind of thing you’d wear when you’re doing smart-casual/office chic or are a little bit dressed up but aren’t going over the top.

At the launch, Arden asked what we'd like engraved on the bottle. I put my mom's name on it and she spotted that on twitter ages back and is pretending otherwise. 'Hi Mom!'
At the launch, Arden asked what we’d like engraved on the bottle. I put my mom’s name on it and she spotted that on twitter ages back but is acting otherwise so she can pretend to be surprised when I gift it to her. ‘Hi Mom!’

When I close my eyes and think about the ‘ideal’ woman who’d pull this off well I see her as being mature (as in 30s plus), professional, level-headed, well-groomed and practical yet naturally glamorous. She’s not wild and crazy and running free – she’s restrained with impeccable manners – but still knows how to have a bit of fun and has a warm, kind personality that people gravitate towards. If she worked at your office, you’d trust her with your credit card and pin number to pay the sushi delivery dude. She’s possibly a Taurus with a penchant for simple luxury and gives considerate, tasteful gifts – like good white linen or orchids.

For the record, this descriptor is in no way a reflection of my mom. Mrs vd B might have good manners and isn’t likely to commit credit card fraud, but she’s in no way restrained nor would she tolerate a gig in an office. She’s also got a penchant for cards featuring dancing meerkats whereas Absolu Woman possibly owns personalised stationary. However, it would suit her too – if there’s any left by the time I hand it over – which goes to show it’s a multifaceted scent indeed.)

Anyway, if you liked the first Untold, you’re going to have to sniff this one too. And if you didn’t, I reckon give it a bash and possibly be surprised. I know I was.

Find Elizabeth Arden Untold Eau de Parfum in stores now going for R520 for 30ml, R720 for 50ml and R920.00 for 100ml.

Love, love



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