During the Christmas season, department stores usually roll out an assortment of cologne and perfume gift sets to entice holiday shoppers. Celebrities, such as Beyonce, Britney Spears, and Rhianna, have all brought out their own scents onto the market. This season, we are met with the disturbing creation by Lady Gaga called ‘Fame,’ which is being promoted as a gift set option for Christmas 2012.
Made under the umbrella of Gaga’s Haus Laboratories, ‘Fame’ is touted as the first ever black eau de parfum that sprays clear once it hits the air. It was Lady Gaga’s idea to make the perfume the color black. Rumor has it that the fragrance pushes the limits of creativity so much that the makers have applied for a patent. Breaking from conventional perfume making, the scent doesn’t possess the typical formula of top, middle and base notes. Instead, the ingredients intermingle with one another all at the same time.
Described as being dark, sensual and light, the combination of fragrances is an interesting choice. For starters, the deadly plant called belladonna is used to provide the scent for the ‘dark’ component. Interestingly, belladonna is known as a highly poisonous plant that can cause a person to suffer hallucinations, delirium and other effects, such as mind dissociation. Ancient literature and folklore associates Atropa Belladonna with the Devil. A blend of honey, saffron and apricot nectar offers a hint of sensuality. The lighter side of the perfume offers the floral scents of crushed tiger orchid and jasmine sambac. Adding to the dramatics of the perfume, written on the packaging of the fragrance is: “tears of belladonna, crushed heart of tiger orchid with a black veil of incense, pulverized apricot and the combinative essences of saffron and honey drops.”
The fragrance does a good job of incorporating the things that Lady Gaga stands for ”“ a dark individual who openly embraces elements of the occult. For starters, some of the ingredients used to create the scent have a history tied to ancient witchcraft and sex magick rituals. Throughout history, belladonna has found a place in magick. It is said that witches would use the plant to help with their flying. Others believed that the plant had the power to place a user in a hypnotic trance. Because of this, some have likened Lady Gaga’s scent to a potion rather than a perfume.
To make matters worse, there are also writings linking belladonna to aggressive female sexuality, where it was believed to play a role in witch orgies with spirits/demons on the Sabbath. The herb was supposedly rubbed on their bodies to create erotic sensations and hallucinations.
The bottle design is also very telling ”“ it looks like a black egg in the grasps of elegant-looking gold claws ”“ similar to an eagle or vulture. Eggs are often used to symbolize spirituality and other concepts. It is connected to birth and rebirth. There are also cosmic associations to consider. Egg rituals have also been embraced by those who believe it helps in creating a new race ”“ something that Lady Gaga has expressed an interest in accomplishing.
Gaga’s first perfume was described by the singer as “a beautiful prospect with a dark heart.” The official slogan for the scent is: “Black like the soul of fame but invisible once airborne.” Ads for the perfume have also pushed the limits of obscenity as they depict Gaga holding a bottle of Fame while black-masked, tiny men climb over her nude body ”“ covering up ‘forbidden’ body parts. The concept of this advertisement clearly presents the darker, evil side of fame.
All in all, from the packaging to the chemical structure of the fragrance, Lady Gaga has incorporated a great deal of deliberate, menacing themes in regards to her new scent, ‘Fame.’