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Valentina Assoluto Eau de Parfum Intense — Passion in a Bottle


Valentina is growing up, becoming better acquainted with the art of seduction, with the desire for skin-on-skin contact, the yearning to feel a lover’s breath on her neck, to relish in his embrace until the breaking of dawn. To that end,  in April Valentino introduced a more sensual version of its already exquisite Valentino Valentina Eau de Parfum: the Valentino Valentina Assoluto Eau de Parfum Intense ($88 for 1.7 oz. and $117 for 2.7 oz. at Nordstrom.com).   

The two fragrances share some key notes so that they feel, in fact, like different chapters in a single story or, perhaps even, like different stages in a woman’s life. Both scents, for instance, feature a white Alba truffle top note — after all, the inclusion of this unusual note was part of the original scent’s charm. But, while the original Valentina EDP married this truffle note with the zesty and joyful scent of Calabrian bergamot, the Valentina Assoluto EDP replaces this citrus note with a juicy Smeggia peach note. The difference is immediately detectable. While the bergamot note in the original EDP melded so well with the truffle note that it wasn’t particularly perceptible, your senses will likely pick up the peach note within seconds of spritzing.

But these, of course, are just the original impressions you’ll get from the fragrance. In truth, their differences reach all the way to their core. Whereas the Valentina EDP’s heart is composed of feminine jasmine flowers mixed with Amalfi orange blossom and enhanced with a touch of strawberry flavor, the Valentina Assoluto EDP boasts middle notes of jasmine, tuberose, and orange blossom magnified with a hint of creamy vanilla.  The strawberry flavor in the original Valentina added a youthful, playful, cheeky vibe to the scent that’s arguably less present in this iteration of the scent but, at the same time, the addition of vanilla immediately increases the seductive allure of the scent, making it more titillating. Similarly, the addition of the tuberose note at the heart instantly makes the fragrance feel a bit more grown up without venturing into matronly territory.

Last, we have the differences in the base notes. The original Valentina EDP incorporated woody, gourmand, and oriental notes along its base, so that amber, cedar wood, and vanilla mingled together to create a trail that was at once mysterious, earthy, and the slightest bit sensual. The Valentina Assoluto, meanwhile, retains only the cedar base note, trading in the other notes in favor of oak moss and patchouli, both musty and earthy in a way that feels untamed and a bit savage.

The Valentina Assoluto is stronger than its predecessor and arguably bolder, plus it tends to last longer on the skin, but whether it’s a superior fragrant composition is really open to debate. I personally prefer the Valentina EDP for everyday use because of the free-spirited and whimsical elements in its composition (that quirky strawberry flavor at the heart, for instance), plus I find the tuberose note in the Valentina Assoluto EDP a bit too overwhelming initially (it wears off rather quickly, but I will say that the initial impression can seem overpowering). That being said, I do find the Valentina Assoluto preferable for an evening soiree or a romantic date since it really does have a provocative edge, a carnality and romanticism that’s less noticeable than it is in its predecessor.

Both fragrances were developed by master perfumer Olivier Cresp and both come in the very same round bottle but, while the original scent has a nude color, this one has a darker, amber-tinged tone that speaks to its greater intensity. Similarly, the original Valentina EDP features a trio of rosette accents: one white, one nude, and one a fleshy rose hue. The Valentina Assoluto EDP’s bottle, meanwhile, features one single oversize rosette in a fleshy nude shade.

 Get ready to see Valentina’s passionate, ardent, steamy side.


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