February 2012: 25 posts

18th Century Incense Recipe and Perfume To Burn

Ince
As the smoke of joss sticks paints fragrant curlicues in the air, I feel that I am participating in some ancient ritual. I love smoky scents in general and my favorite incense perfumes range from tender like Chanel No 22 to austere like Comme des Garçons Avignon. But the process of lighting incense, watching it smolder and then vanish into scented smoke and ashes is what I enjoy the most. The word “joss” came down to us via Portuguese from the Latin deus, god, and whenever I burn incense—even if only to enjoy its perfume, rather than to please a deity—it feels like a spiritual offering.

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Estee Lauder Bronze Goddess Capri : Fragrance Review

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Elc

Star rating: 5 stars–outstanding/potential classic, 4 stars–very good, 3 stars–adequate, 2 stars–disappointing, 1 star–poor.

Bronze Goddess is a summer limited edition fragrance, which Estée Lauder brings back every year with a flanker. This year’s variation is Bronze Goddess Capri, a “solar Oriental fragrance inspired by the seductive Isle of Capri.” Neither Capri nor summer flankers (the perfume equivalent of movie sequels) tempt me much, but the original Bronze Goddess is such a brilliant composition of creamy coconut and dry amber that every year I anticipate its sister fragrance as well.

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Jo Malone White Lilac & Rhubarb Cologne and Other New Fragrances

Jmwl

Jo Malone the London Blooms Collection is now available in stores (Nordstrom, Saks 5th Avenue, select Neiman Marcus locations). The collection includes three fragrances: Iris and Lady MoorePeony and Moss, and White Lilac and Rhubarb. The perfumes were created by Christine Nagel and are inspired by the English gardens.

Peony and Moss: “Contrasting the dainty and the dirty. The gossamer lightness of delicate peonies grounded in earthy green.” It contains notes of green sap, blackcurrant, jasmine, peony, rose, ivy, moss.

White Lilac and Rhubarb: “A daring juxtaposition. Tart-vibrant rhubarb cuts through the soft lilac, rose and sun-loving heliotrope. ” It is comprised of violet leaves, rhubarb, white lilac, rose, amber, musk, heliotrope.

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Value For Money, Quality and Other Perfume Musings

Vasnsi

The question of quality is a complex one, especially with something as intangible as perfume. All of us have our own definitions of quality, and as such, I see this post as a place to share my reflections and hear your thoughts as well. As I mentioned in the previous post, I do not want to conflate the price of raw materials with quality. I do not believe that beer is inferior to wine, and in the same vein, I do not think that Tommy Girl is inferior to Shalimar. I simply do not want to pay the price of a great vintage for a bottle of Budweiser. Perfume is a luxury, and given the current economic climate, I want to make sure my pleasures are never guilty and that my dollar is spent wisely. When looking for a perfume that offers good value for my money, my personal take is as follows:

 

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Dolce & Gabbana Velvet Love : Perfume Review

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Bosschaert

Star rating: 5 stars–outstanding/potential classic, 4 stars–very good, 3 stars–adequate, 2 stars–disappointing, 1 star–poor.

My fingertips smell of peppery flowers and vanilla. The sample vial of Dolce & Gabbana Velvet Love has spilled in my handbag, and I have been trailing the spicy carnation with me for the past couple of weeks. Every time I reach into my purse to fish out my wallet or a pen, my fingers catch some of the fragrance as well. Soon, I started applying Velvet Love out of choice to indulge in its smoky sweetness.

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