August 7, 2017
'Tropical Princess' Toni Garrn by Francois Nars for Vogue Japan August 2012 ©
It may be too early to start dreaming of a winter getaway, but you can start planning your traveling perfume wardrobe to accompany you. House Of Matriarch’s new limited edition perfume called Toukka Ta Tao, will most definitely be in my bag. A collaboration between Christi Meshell and Bangkok-based perfume blogger Timmy Vangtan, Toukka Ta Tao is a gorgeous and complicated vacation in an ocean blue bottle with a sun-tanned coppery cap.
House of Matriarch Perfumer Christi Meshell
The inspiration for this perfume is Koh Tao a small island in the Gulf of Thailand approximately 400 km. due south of Bangkok. Christi Meshell writes, “Koh Tao (Turtle Island) in Thailand is famous for its surrounding coral reef. Toukka Ta Tao perfume is a "tropical get-away" ambiance perfume, the result of a blend of 129 individual notes. Layered fruits, flowers, spices, tinctures, and my exclusive special "beach musk" accord. Accented by notes of lilikoi, plai, kava and sesame, the dream of this fragrance is shared by many around the world – it is the scent of ‘Swimming with turtles’”.
Photo: Google Maps enhanced by Robert
When I first visited Koh Tao in 1990 it was a virtually untouched tropical paradise with just a handful of wooden bungalows fronted by blindingly white beaches and water of electric Cyan blue. At that time the only way to get there was a four hour ferry ride from the nearby bigger island of Koh Samui at that time a sleepy off-the-beaten-path backpacker’s destination, then the next day hiring a longtail boat to make the four to five hour trek to Koh Tao.
Koh Tao Turtle Island in Thailand Beach Photo by Bahn's Diving Resort©
Koh Tao is the quintessential Thai island, with a green jungled interior and ringed with stunning turquoise bays surrounded by limestone karsts, multi-storied rock columns shooting up out of the water like mineralized explosions. Caves to explore, magnificent diving complete with the eponymous sea turtles and vivid tropical fish, Koh Tao was and is a sultry and torrid wet dream, the pinnacle of perfection for tropical islands.
Karlie Kloss by Henrique Gendre©
In capturing the essence of a tropical island getaway, perfumer Christi Meshell has created a minor miracle, the liquid and fragrant sin qua non of beach scents that eschews the usual tooth-shattering sweetness of a Piña Colada inspired perfume, for something more earthy, hot sand-like, and green.
Toukka Ta Tao opens with an unctuous melange of a Southeast Asian fruit salad comprised of perfumed litchi, astringent citrusy passion fruit, and sweet buttery mango, but quickly moves into a jungle-like bright green of coconut palm trees, and the fibrous, dusty and pulpy vapors emanating from Kava-Kava mixed with Marigold.
Kate Moss for Vogue Brazil Photographer Mario Testino©
It is both intoxicating and beautifully familiar. Underneath all this tropical greenness is the singular hot sand silicate scent of beach overlaid with the salty, metallic-tinged breath of sea water.
Jerry Hall and Mick Jagger on a beach in 1987 Photo Getty Images©
In the crowded genre of beach-scent and tropical inspired perfumes House of Matriarch's Toukka Ta Tao is one of the finest, a stunning photorealistic breath of a moment in time spent lying on the hot sand of a fantasy island.
Perfumer’s Note: “In reverence of our connection to the matriarch that is Mother Ocean, and to honor the beautiful reef of Ko Tao, House of Matriarch will be donating 10% of sales from this limited edition perfume to the Coral Reef Alliance.”
Notes: Litchi, Mango, Artemisia, Davana, Kava-Kava, Passionfruit, Marigold, Vanilla, Tuberose, Frangipani, Plai (Thai Ginger), Sea Notes, Palm Frond Accord, Sandalwood, Coconut, Ambergris, Tolu Balsam, Oudh, Musk, Myrhh, Ylang-Ylang, Jasmine Sambac, Tonka Bean and Sesame.
Disclosure: Thank you so much to Christi Meshell for supplying the sample. The opinions are my own.
–Robert Herrmann, Editor
-Art Direction: Michelyn Camen, Editor-in-Chief who chose the images
Toukka Ta Tao perfume Extrait Mood Board courtesy of House of Matriarch
Thanks to Christi Meshell and House Of Matriarch, we have a 15 ml. travel spray of Toukka Ta Tao perfume for one registered reader worldwide, so be sure to register if you have not done so. To be eligible please let us know what appeals to you about Roberts review, your fantasy tropical beach, a favorite House Of Matriarch fragrance, and where you live. Draw closes on 8/10/2017