So I had this information, and sat on it, partly because I got the urge to blog about other thing first - the German tour and whatnot - but also because I figured that a post about atomisers is a fairly specialist subject, and people might want a little pause before I weigh in with another one. Then, just the other day, Bonkers reader Crikey left a comment on that post from February, with a link to Escentual, and the amusing remark:
'Oh, hmm...it appears the colours are blooming again.'
Well, as I say, I am not quite sure from the PR lady's email whether the colours went away and have now come back again, or whether they have always been in the range, but I have just been living in a monochromatic backwater.
Anyway, the nudge from Crikey was enough: it was high time to share with people the good news that there is in fact a veritable rainbow palette of Travalos - and maybe there was all along.
The next piece of news concerns two new products in the Travalo stable - The Milano and The New Classic. Well, The Milano has been available in Duty Frees and on board a number of airlines since last October, but presumably it is now hitting the wider retail world.
These two Travalo variants are based around a different design principle, for while they still sit on the top of a perfume bottle and draw the liquid up using a pumping action, the actual cartridge inside the Travalo is detachable. This doesn't mean that any less commitment is involved - oh, no, the new plastic cartridges are not intended to be cleaned out and reused - however, you can take the cartridge of the New Classic Travalo out of its original housing and swap it with the one inside The Milano. (This luxury model bears an uncanny resemblance to the Hermes perfume travel cases, though it retails for £35 and has some kind of leatherette fabric rather than calfskin - it is, however, also available in bright orange!)
Oh, and of course if you had multiple New Classics, you could also switch between them. I wonder if I would swap the New Classics over, say if I wanted to take two scents away with me that both happened to be in silver Travalos before. I could pop one of the silvers in another colour for ease of identification during my trip - and/or a bit of variety. I foresee a problem with that though, namely that I have just about memorised what scents are in each of my existing Travalos(!), and the same would apply if I committed perfumes to a bunch of New Classics some day. Yes, given my aversion to labels, if I swapped the housing on them I could get mighty confused about what was where. ;)
|Gargoyle doing the honours again|
Additionally, The New Classic has 'a new spray head technology, which produces a finer mist to disperse perfume efficiently over a wider area'. I'll be honest, I have yet to test this out, as I haven't put any perfume in it (commitment problems!), but I'll also be honest and say that I don't think I have any need to disperse perfume over a wider area, though it might be more economical to do so rather than hitting my 'décolleté' (I use the term loosely) with multiple squirts instead. Yes, I think I should conduct some field trials on this and get back to you, keeping an open mind on the matter.
|L to R: Classic, The Milano (case & cartridge), New Classic (ditto)|
I cracked! I decided that it is half a job if I don't put this claim to the test, so I committed a New Classic Travalo to En Voyage Perfumes Zelda and compared it with a regular Classic containing Kenzo Flower Oriental. Off the bat I must say that I am not wild about the plastic cartridge, which looks a bit cheap to my mind, but not only does the New Classic definitely spray a finer, more widely dispersed mist(!), but it filled up much more quickly than the traditional Travalo, or so it seemed to me.
|New Classic - just one spray!|
|Classic - look bottom left!|
To complete the test drive I then took the cartridge of Zelda out and popped it very gingerly - and with considerable trepidation! - into The Milano, which has a hole at the bottom for the end of the atomiser to breathe maybe, and help prevent collateral scenting of the metal housing. I even plucked up the courage to stick the top back on The Milano, albeit only for a few seconds. I can truthfully say it did not impregnate the Milano housing with Zelda in that time, though I did wonder if repeated use of The Milano with different scents might end up leaving traces here and there.
Then a couple of things bothered me about The Milano, namely that once the cartridge clicks into place, which it does do quite securely, the nozzle swivels round more easily and quickly than you would expect - the full 360 degrees, like something out of The Exorcist. And the overall weight of The Milano troubled me - it is very heavy for its size, and I would not want that weight in my handbag, especially not in a smaller evening purse such as one might well be carrying in the smart restaurant of my imagining. ;)
UPDATE! I have just weighed The Milano (in its empty state) vs a Travalo of the classic kind (filled with perfume) - 58g plays 15g, so a lot heavier all right.
So in summary, I was pleasantly surprised by the faster pump action and impressively well distributed spray mist, but I don't truly see the need to swap the cartridges around into a rather clunky, if undeniably stylish holder.
On a side note, I did really like the layout of the email from the PR company, which looked exactly like a blog post, with the pictures integrated into the body of the text, rather than having to go off and click on some big images in pdfs and what have you.
Look at all those colours! I feel the atomiser equivalent of a kid in a sweet shop moment coming on...! Oh and Crikey, did you place your order yet....?