A Post with 1869, Shaal Nur, and Useless Gossip

Acca Kappa 18691869 comes from a company that only recently caught my notice, Acca Kappa. Acca Kappa produces a full line of grooming products in addition to fragrance, which includes some nice vegetarian-friendly hair brushes. (Well this vegetarian is happy with hers, anyhow.) The 1869 men’s line ranges from an eau de cologne to a broad selection of men’s shaving and shower items, but I will only be talking about the eau here.

Leather is the theme, and 1869 addresses it in a very smooth, nearly unfettered style. Any other notes in the fragrance, including geranium, cardamom, violet leaf, and musk, seem to be stiched into the predominating leathery tones. There is a velvety feel to it, softened rather than sweetened by vanilla in the base. But truly, it’s all about the leather here.

TCSay, remember when Top Gun came out, and the trendy item for a while there was leather bomber jackets as a consequence of the flick’s popularity? (Hell, remember when Tom Cruise was cool? Not just cool, either. The coolest.) 1869 totally reminds me of the way a 1987 department store rack full of brown bomber jackets smelled. I wonder what ever happened to all those jackets people bought? It’s not like leather disintegrates quickly. I bet there’s, like, an army of mid-80s bomber jackets hidden in the closets of America eagerly waiting for their retro rehabilitation back into fashion. And all those jackets are probably bitter about the knit ponchos from the 70s that made a comeback during the ill-advised Great Poncho Rush of ‘01… why not them, too?

Etro Shaal Nur toiletteEtro Shaal Nur takes a bumpier route to acheive its fragrant aims than 1869. While leathery incense is intoned heavily, this somber reference gets used as a loudspeaker to broadcast other notes. A citrusy top of bergamot, lemon, and grapefruit score some airtime, then a segueway of rose and kitchen herbs lead into an extended mix of vetiver and dry, rather musky woods. Shaal Nur smells as if it were both as dark and as weightless as shadows. This eau de toilette attracts fans of both genders, and with its distinctive devolopment, it’s plain to see why. It’s not necessarily an easily worn or categorized fragrance, however. I find it too masculine to wear very often, since the musky and vetiver-dominated drydown linger most on me; My husband finds it too “girly” because the citrus and floral notes stick hard to his skin. Those who love it, really love it, so it is worth sampling, but I would recommend against buying a bottle unsniffed.

Completely Random and Pointless Gossip!

A friend of mine used to work in the airline industry in Miami, but she just moved back up to Portland recently. When we were chatting the other day, we wound up on the topic of all the celebrities she met during the course of that job. The person she had the nicest things to say about was Susan Lucci, who she described as the warmest, friendliest celeb she’s ever met, having a sort of old-school Southern-lady style graciousness. She’s apparently also very wee: so tiny you could lose her between the cracks of your couch cushions with your keys and loose change.

But Susan Lucci isn’t why I’m feeling compelled to share. She also mentioned a TV judge from one of those afternoon court shows. This judge was so rude, so diva’ed out in behavior, that the flight attendants christened their passenger with the portmanteau “First Classhole.” Hee! I’d say who it is, but it’s more fun to leave it open as a blind item guessing game. Plus? It’s new to me, so I really just HAD to share the bit o’ slang “First Classhole” before I exploded while waiting to find an excuse to use it.

Image of 1869 cologne from, where you can find a wide variety of choices from the Acca Kappa brand. 1869 is also available through First-in-Fragrance, and FiF does offer a sampling program. Second image from Top Gun’s wikipedia entry. Image of Shaal Nur from, which also sells the matching body wash and the body milk.

4 Responses to “A Post with 1869, Shaal Nur, and Useless Gossip”

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    Said this on November 16th, 2006 at 2:11pm:

    Oh yes, I’m a Shaal Nur lover. It’s a beautiful rose incense on me, actually very girly. I tried to get my husband to try it, and he thought it was too girly. But you’re right–definitely a try-before-you-buy kind of scent.

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    Said this on November 16th, 2006 at 2:49pm:

    I wish I got a bit less vetiver from than I do… I think it’s the vetiver that causes it to be so “masculine” on me. It’s too bad I don’t get the strong rose like you do. And I do wish my husband liked it better, since I think it’s a little nicer on him than I, but whatcha gonna do, you know? At least I know he’s not unusual or just being difficult for finding it too girly now!

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    Said this on November 16th, 2006 at 6:17pm:

    Was curious about 1869 since I love the Calycanthus. Doesn’t sound like I need it so thanks for killing that lemming :-)

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    Said this on November 17th, 2006 at 5:44pm:

    How funny - haven’t tried the Calycanthus at all… am not sure I’ll ever get to it any time soon, either. I am not sure you’d like it, really, it’s just not quite your style, I’m guessing :)

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