Purr by Katy Perry

I was fortunate enough to receive an advance purchase of Purr before it hit the shelves on May 2nd, and from the moment I sprayed it- I knew it was going to be a huge hit in NZ. Apart from the gorgeous bottle, (which by the way, you NEED in your collection) it was clear that this obligatory fruity-floral was not going to disappoint the target market of teens and 20-somethings.

Little did I realise, it was going to be a hit for grown-up girls too.

Usually I am wound up with excitement when I am afforded an advance purchase, but for this one- I was not. And believe it or not, I'm a Katy fan! In fact, I must hold the world record for listening to the Teenage Dream album over and over- even my Miss 14 asked me to stop playing it. The phrase "I'm 'a get your heart racing in my skin tight jeans" embarrassingly, became part of my vocabulary.But as it stands, I was officially bored and unimpressed with Purr at first whiff, and I was disappointed that Katy had said she created something unique, and had failed to deliver.

Now dont get me wrong, the bottle had me drooling and I petted that thing like it were a real pet, after all, its just so gosh-darn cute. But the juice simply failed to register a pulse. At first sniff, it was all about the fresh n fruity. Freesia, apple, aquatic greens, fruity sweetness tinged with coconut, jasmine and a typical vanilla musk finish. To its credit, the sweetness was not as sugary as I anticipated, but the whole thing came off as very Victoria's Secret body spritz-ish or a sub-creation of the Harajuku-Lovers collection. Its interesting to note that Katy was inspired by Gwen Stefani and had nothing but complimentary things to say of Gwen's Harajuku line. She also touched on how she felt there was still room in the market for her fragrance and that she was involved in every stage of creating Purr, and even sketched the design of the bottle herself, right down to the crystal eyes and the charm around the neck. She stressed that she didn't want anything overpowering and was a former wearer of the Victoria's Secret spritzes, and these influences are definitely present in her creation.
At this point I had concluded it was a nice scent, a good balance of freshness with fruit and flowers, but nothing to get the heart racing and it would probably only be worn if I needed a spritz after sweating up a storm vacuuming the house.

Flash forward to a few days later and my daughter and I were gearing up for the ultimate Katy experience- to see her in concert. I chose to wear Fleurs D'Oranger and she wore Purr. I had heard that part of the show's sensory experience was to have the scent of cotton candy fill the auditorium. (By the way, it smelled more like vanilla Play-Doh than cotton candy.) It did cross my mind that they might pump Purr through the vents, and to be honest I was dreading the thought of being trapped in a cloud of it. However, on the ride to the venue, I was suddenly struck by my daughters sillage. Wow!

This stuff was almost unrecognizable as the same perfume I myself had tried and dismissed. While it still retained the fresh florals and fruit, it had morphed into buttery, sweet and smooth once paired with the skin of a 14yr old. In fact this stuff should be illegal to sell to anyone under 18- if I was drawn in to sniff at my kids neck and had to stop myself from biting her, imagine what its going to do to a 14yr old boy! *cue parental panic* I couldn't believe this fruity little fresh scent actually had some claws to it. Who would have thought? Granted, its claws are not going to shred curtains, but it has enough of a hook to hang on and draw you closer to that purring mass of buttery, sweet softness. After trying it again on myself, I managed to coax out that enticing drydown and experience it on my own skin. Its funny how being a bystander can present undiscovered facets of a fragrance you wouldn't necessarily recognise on yourself.

Purr is a coy but playful scent and while its not terribly unique or inspiring, it does have a shape-shifter quality with the ability to enchant even the most cynical of critics and soften the edges of any criticism.

The Katy Perry Aftermath
Katy Perry has certainly captured little NZ with her debut scent, in fact I have never seen a fragrance fly off the shelves since Britney Spears' Fantasy hit our shores. Purr is incredibly popular right now, and its not just the target demographic that is loving it, grown up girls are enjoying it too. Its rare you have a fragrance like this, that appeals to a broader age group.

For me, its a case of curiosity killed the cat- but satisfaction brought it back.


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