Satellite Padparadscha


Satellite Padparadscha is pretty close to the kind of spiced-up triple toe-loop I’d hoped Molton Brown Black Pepper was set to accomplish when I tested it back in December, yet, sadly, Molton Brown whiffed the pepper-spice routine big time.

Padparadscha, on the other hand, fairly leaps out of the bottle in a nose-tickling fanfare of ground pepper and juniper berries before mellowing gracefully into a smooth woodsy-musk that later curls up on the sofa with a good book and a cozy amber blanket.

The amber, in this instance, is not the super-saturated type I’ve come to expect out of most fragrances with the word “amber” in the note list, and I think Robin at Now Smell This sums it up nicely when she writes, “The amber adds warmth without any sweetness. It is slightly earthy in the early stages; later, it is smoother, and sandalwood and musk are the predominant notes.”

Robin also notes that Padparadscha was $65.00 for 100ml back in 2006. It now sells for $80.00. I’m just going to take this opportunity to state that deliberate inflation as a monetary policy sucks. Okay then.

Padparadscha, despite its warm spicy nature, is not a big bold scent for turning heads and filling rooms; instead, it shadows the skin like your best imaginary friend, all close and conspiratorial. It won’t knock your socks off by any means, but the lightly (well, barely is more like it) sugared sandalwood/musk base spins it into decidedly unisex trending to masculine territory, with soft, warm tones that make it a contender for Non-Intrusive Office Wear Fragrance of the Year.

FYI: a padparadscha is “a pinkish-orange to orangy-pink colored” sapphire that’s extremely rare and mined out of Sri-Lanka, Vietnam and Africa: “The ideal color of a padparadscha has been described by some as the marriage between a Sri Lankan lotus flower and a sunset” — which is a fairly apt mood-description of the Satellite Padparadscha fragrance, soft yet fiery.

A video clip below of a padparadscha gemstone (there are debates among jewelers as to how much red a padparadscha stone is allowed to exhibit, and this one seems like it might be veering dangerously close to ruby territory):

The Satellite fragrance line was founded by Sandrine Dulon as a companion to her Satellite Paris jewelry brand. A video clip below of a visit to the SoHo Satellite Paris boutique — once you get past the first 90 seconds of the two female video hosts mugging for the camera, the clip switches to the English language as the pair examine the interior of the boutique, plus all that sparkly jewelry:

Note: Special thanks to Tara for the generous sample of Padparadscha. This will get added to my (increasing) list of fragrances I might eventually purchase, but it’s got a bit of a wait before it hits the front of the line.

OFF TOPIC (but Artsy!):

So I learned from Marin’s blog that today is The Fourth Annual Brigid in the Blogosphere Poetry Slam. I’ll quietly offer up a piece from Howard Nemerov, and hope he doesn’t mind:

One Way

The way a word does when
It senses on one side
A thing and on the other
A thought; at either side
It glances and goes deep
Together; like sunlight
On marble, on burnished wood,
That seems to be coming from
Within the surface and
To be one substance with it —
That is one way of doing
One’s being in a world
Whose being is both thought
And thing, where neither thing
Nor thought will do alone
Till either answers the other;
Two lovers in the night
Each sighing other’s name
Whose alien syllables
Become synonymous
For all their mortal night
And their embodied day:
Fire in the diamond,
Diamond in the dark.


  • Tara

    Glad you enjoyed the Padparadscha. Thank you for your lovely package, that soap perfumed the whole box!

  • Nathan Branch

    I only wish it had just a smidgeon more sweetness in the base, but other than that, Padparadscha was very enjoyable. Thanks for the decant. The bottle looks like it’s really pretty, as well, to kind of go along with the jewelry line.
    Ah, the soap! Was it the Patchouli or the Frankincense and Myrrh? I can’t remember! If you’re into scented soaps, there’s a company here in Texas called “The Pig and the Peacock” that makes beautiful, and beautifully scented, soaps. I sent some to Five-Oh and she said they were lovely.
    The bar I sent to you was from a small made-by-hand outfit called “The Scented Djinn

  • Well, you stumped me on this one. Whozah whatsuh? Sounds good, though. :)
    Padparascha. Okay, I’m gonna remember. Put in drawer with “alexandrite.” Sort of.
    Thanks for hepping me to the poetry slam; what a fine way to celebrate Brigid’s day.

  • Nathan Branch

    I know! Can you imagine if someone were to ever ask you what you were wearing?
    “It’s . . . uh . . . oh hell, I’d tell you if I could pronounce it!”
    I kind of figured the poetry slam would be some sugar for your tea.

  • Katie Puckrik

    I checked in to announce that Padparascha and I were an item after Tom Ford Amber Absolute and I drifted apart, and then my eyes did a cartoon bug out of my head when I noticed that you included in your Blog list! Yay! Woo! (Does a little dance.)
    Nathan, you’re lovely for including me in your “hip list”. And I’ve inadvertently already returned the favor by namechecking you in my Basenotes interview that goes up this Friday, 6 Feb.
    You are a big Man Doll.

  • Nathan Branch

    My “hip list” — LOL! I’m just hoping that the link can send you a visitor at least once every six months.
    I appreciate the future namecheck on Basenotes, by the way. Your interview with them should prove to be good exposure for you, not to mention entertaining for the rest of us. I’m looking forward to reading it.
    And funny you should mention falling out of love with Tom Ford’s Amber Absolute — I was just feeling the same way last week. I’m packing up some old reliables to take on an upcoming road trip, and I found myself grabbing my 5ml roller bottle of Amber Absolute, not because I really wanted to take it with me, but because a roller bottle travels so well and I can just kind of fake the delight from there.
    Sorry, Tom.

  • I like saying “Padparadscha” and I love the poem.

  • Nathan Branch

    It’s so rare that I get a chance to delve into my poetry book collection, so I grabbed it and ran with it; besides, it kind of dove-tailed nicely with the topic of the padparadscha gem.

  • Katie Puckrik

    “Fake the delight” — LOL! Or whatever the acronym is for “laughing out loud with dead eyes and a grim set about the jaw”, because haven’t we all been in that position with a faded loved one we’re still stuck with?