Today Patricia, our new contributing writer, talks about the dilemma of picking a perfume for vacation and why she decided to make her latest vacation a rose scented one. Patricia graduated from her mother’s perfume table to her very own bottle of Miss Dior as a young teen. This discovery started a lifelong love of perfume in general and green mossy fragrances in particular. After 30-plus years in the publishing industry, she works as an office manager in Boston, Massachusetts. Besides perfume, she loves long novels and spending time with her horse. Please give her a warm welcome!
In Massachusetts we have a saying, “If you don’t like the weather, just wait a minute,” so I wasn’t unduly concerned when the first few days of our summer vacation were cloudy and rainy. Still, the beachy fragrances such as Estée Lauder’s Bronze Goddess and Bobbi Brown’s Beach that I’d packed in my suitcase seemed to mock me, and even my favorite summer citruses didn’t satisfy me.
Fortunately my packing style has always been of the “everything but the kitchen sink” variety, so I had brought plenty of sample vials and small decants, including many roses, many of which I had not yet tried. But it turned out that variety was not what I wanted. What I craved were roses, and lots of them. Even after the sun came out on the third day, the roses and I were on a roll. Rose perfumes turned out to be unexpectedly versatile: the heavier, darker blends suited the foggy and rainy days, while the crisp, bright ones were perfect companions for sunny beach outings. Here are six that I enjoyed on my vacation.
Atelier Cologne Rose Anonyme
Atelier Cologne Rose Anonyme is a dry unisex rose, great for daytime, which I wore while gallery shopping on one of the first grey days of my week. It was a pleasurable companion, non-obtrusive and fresh, great for daytime, but requiring frequent reapplication if you’re after a statement making perfume.
Le Labo Rose 31
Le Labo Rose 31 is often considered masculine and not much of a rose at all, but I love the combination of coconut, cedarwood and amber that makes it a cozy choice. Its musky warmth was just perfect for the first few foggy days when the beach was out of the question but a long hike ideal.
Les Parfums de Rosine Un Zest de Rose
Les Parfums de Rosine Un Zest de Rose is a fresh rose with plenty of lemon zest and green buds. It held up to a stroll on the beach and was noticeable on my wrists several hours later. It reminded me of another summer favorite, Tocca’s Bianca, which is my idea of rose lemonade.
Serge Lutens La Fille de Berlin
Serge Lutens La Fille de Berlin is a true dirty rose. Even at the end of the day, I could still smell it on my skin. Wearing it is like lying on the damp earth of a rose bed on a still, warm night in mid-June. I wore it morning and evening and concluded that I must have a full bottle.
Frédéric Malle’s Une Rose
A show-stopper of a perfume, Frédéric Malle’s Une Rose is a full, intense crimson rose with just enough green leaves and dirt to keep me happy. I reserved it primarily for cool evenings, and I loved how it clung to my skin for hours.
James Heeley Hippie Rose
James Heeley Hippie Rose could just as easily have been called “Happy Rose.” Its bright and cheerful opening of peppery bergamot is followed by patchouli and rose. The drydown is a pleasant mix of vetiver, musk, and incense. A perfect sunny day perfume.
What perfumes do you take on vacation, or do you take a vacation from perfume?
Photography by Patricia Thomas