There are several fresh, transparent, vegetal musks on the market, such as the far more costly and fashionable Clair de Musc by Serge Lutens. But when it comes to a perfect icon such as this, snobbery becomes irrelevant. In my opinion, no clean, synthetic musk has ever been done better than the classic by The Body Shop, a sheer, floral musk scent with soft, peachy accents and unyielding aura that draws people in like almost nothing else on the planet.
White Musk is one of those cheap perfumes that simply smells good anyway: an inspired, winning formula, immaculately proportioned, with a disinhibiting quality that hints at the glorious beginnings of teenage love. A good friend of mine at university was rendered quite helpless, obsessed, with a French girlfriend of his who wore this scent; he once told me that the scent had even had involuntary orgasm-inducing qualities for him even when fully clothed: on one occasion this had produced quite mortifying results after a last kiss at a train station in Paris.
He had then had to make his way back home furtively through the streets, alone in his jeans, White Musk, on his face and clothes, still smarting, embarrassing, and lingering….