One of these was the very wonderful Cuir de Lancôme - the only scent of which I have a back up bottle. Um...except Lidl Suddenly Madame Glamour, that is, which I am sure must be a mistake. One bottle is quite enough to meet my Coco Mademoiselle Doppelgänger needs. Anyone want the other one? BNIB for £4 plus postage!
Yes, Cuir de Lancôme is an unctuously sumptuous leather scent, one I find sufficiently bewitching to warrant my being bothered to give it its circumflex, so go figure. But I only rate the perfume, mind, and categorically not the box. The bottle top is also a bone of contention, and I have had a moan before about its woeful wobbliness, and inability to screw tightly, or snap shut, or remotely achieve hermetic closure in any way whatsoever.
But it is the box itself for which I reserve my greatest opprobrium - or the maddening shape sorting puzzle apology for one. For anybody not familiar with the Cuir de Lancôme packaging, it comes in two parts - three if you include the cute yet ultimately annoying concertina product leaflet, that is shaped like the bottle and vaguely reminiscent to readers of a certain age of paper dollies.
The box itself consists of a plinth and a cover, which has a cut out recess in the inside to accommodate 'Mr Weeble Top', as he shall henceforth be known, while the plinth has two cut out recesses - one to accommodate the base of the bottle and one to house the foldy-out leaflet. Once opened to its full extent, the leaflet seems to gain a mm or two in the process, and proves a tad tricky to slot back into the slit.
However, this fiddly procedure pales into insignificance compared with the Herculean task of inserting the bottle in the plinth recess, while simultaneously ensuring that Mr Weeble Top goes into the one in the 'roof' of the box. It is not unlike those fights we have all had inserting toilet rolls into toilet roll holders with a spring mechanism. Or batteries into devices, if you are one of those people who are career dodgers of toilet roll changeovers. No sooner do you get one end in when the other one promptly pops out.
Not only this, but the recess in the top of the box is nearer to one side than the other, ditto the one in the plinth for the bottle base. So you have to take care to put the box on facing the right way round, which isn't necessarily immediately obvious to anyone like me with less than optimal spatial awareness.
And I bet that if we all totted up the collective minutes we have spent trying to return our Cuir de Lancôme bottles to their boxes, we'd have enough time to exfoliate or make our own pesto or read the Sunday supplements. Or take up artisanal pencil sharpening (cue the most entertaining and informative nine minutes I've spent in a long time)...or stuff a mushroom, even.
Yes, Cuir de Lancôme may be one of the finest leather scents out there, but the packaging designers most certainly deserve 'a taste of the cat'. And I don't mean Truffle!
What are your pet packaging peeves? Do share in the comments!