Recommend Me a Perfume : December Spices

Today we have our “Recommend Me a Perfume” thread. The whole month of December my kitchen smells of spices as I bake cookies scented with honey, cardamom, cinnamon and orange zest. I enjoy the process of mixing the spices as much as the cookies themselves, and so whenever I have a spare moment, I’m cutting out gingerbread hearts and dipping honey cakes in chocolate.

gingerbread

Bois de Jasmin wishes you Merry Christmas! We will return on Thursday, December 26th, to unwrap presents, share some of our latest perfume discoveries and tally up the year.

How does it work:

1. Please post your requests or questions as comments here. You can also use this space to ask any fragrance related questions. To receive recommendations that are better tailored to your tastes, you can include details on what you like and don’t like, your signature perfumes, and your budget. And please let us know how your search goes and what you end up sampling.

2. Then please check the thread to see if there are other requests you can answer. Your responses are really valuable for navigating the big and sometimes confusing world of perfume, so let’s help each other!

To make this thread easier to read, when you reply to someone, please click on the blue “reply” link under their comment.

Photography by Bois de Jasmin

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272 Comments

  • Lucas: Dear Victoria, since you’re taking a break for Christmas time I’d like to wish you a wonderful time spent with family and friends. Hope it will be a top quality time spent in joy and happiness, filled with the smell of great perfumes and a taste of delicious food!

    Hope you’ll be able to read it before the December 24th!

    Hugs and kisses from Poland. December 20, 2013 at 7:24am Reply

    • Victoria: Happy holidays, Lucas! Lots of warm wishes for 2014! December 22, 2013 at 6:58pm Reply

  • Lucas: I have two perfume questions.

    1. Does anyone know of a woody fragrance with prominent cinnamon note that wouldn’t be overly dry, spicy and would be slighly sweet?

    2. I’m looking for a perfume similar to Guerlain Iris Ganache, any ideas? December 20, 2013 at 7:31am Reply

    • Connie: 1. Maybe Rousse by Serge Lutens or Geisha Rouge by Aroma M?
      2. I have no idea for this one, but I’m interested to read people’s responses! December 20, 2013 at 8:10am Reply

      • Lucas: Hi Connie. SL Rousse is nice but it doesn’t stay long on my skin and is rather linear. I don’t know Geisha Rouge. December 20, 2013 at 9:04am Reply

    • Elisa: I love the cinnamon note in Tea for Two! But you have to like smoke, of course.

      You might also explore clove — I think Black Cashmere would fit the bill if you swapped clove for cinnamon. December 20, 2013 at 9:38am Reply

      • Lucas: Dear Elisa, me and Tea for Two are definitely not friends. I will check out Black Cashmere (Donna Karan, right?) if I get the chance. December 20, 2013 at 11:01am Reply

        • Elisa: I thought I remembered you might not like that one. BC is Donna Karan, yes — really nice! December 20, 2013 at 1:44pm Reply

    • nastja: Frederic Malle Musc Ravageur! It’s neither cloyingly sweet nor unadorned wood, but weaves in and out of sandalwood, cedar, and spice December 20, 2013 at 11:16am Reply

      • Lucas: Will check it out, I have a sample. December 20, 2013 at 11:37am Reply

      • Alessandra: yes!! i am buying it for xmas in fact, i think! December 20, 2013 at 7:22pm Reply

    • D: Check out the lead review of “Chemist in the Bottle” December 20, 2013 at 11:43am Reply

      • Lucas: Haha, that’s a good one D!
        That’s MY blog! :D December 20, 2013 at 12:12pm Reply

        • Di: Yes, but do you read it regularily? December 20, 2013 at 1:33pm Reply

          • Lucas: Of course I read my blog, it’s me who writes it.
            Un Crime Exotique is nice but I have too intensive Christmas association with it to wear it outside of Christmas and I want a perfume to wear in autumn-winter season. Un Crime Exotique doesn’t fit the bill here. December 20, 2013 at 1:38pm Reply

            • Marsha Smith: Hey Lucas, I just checked out your blog and it looks really interesting. I just added it to my favorites list. December 21, 2013 at 7:27am Reply

              • Lucas: Hope you’ll find it interesting December 21, 2013 at 8:00am Reply

            • Di: Err, I was trying to be sly and funny. December 23, 2013 at 2:00pm Reply

    • Tina: The two BIG cinnamons for me are Lolita Lempicka L and Dior Dolce Vita, also Chopard Casmir are high on cinnamon but its veeery sweet, lovely although! Merry Christmas every fellow perfumista out there!!! December 20, 2013 at 11:46am Reply

      • Lucas: Putting them on my list. December 21, 2013 at 8:00am Reply

    • Anka: Lucas, have you already tried Fool For Love (Ego Facto)? To me it’s an almost wet or at least, due to the frangipani, creamy kind of cinnamon, not spicy at all and not too sweet. I like it most when sprayed in my hair. From time to time wafts of cinnamon come to my nose, it smells a bit like tea with cinnamon. On skin I get more of the coconut. December 20, 2013 at 11:55am Reply

      • Lucas: Sounds great Anka and no, I’m not familiar with Fool for Love or even with a brand of Ego Facto.
        I need to check out, I know one of the niche perfumeries in Poland has this brand. December 20, 2013 at 12:13pm Reply

        • rainboweyes: I second Fool for Love, it’s definitely worth trying!
          And Tiziana Terenzi Lillipur contains Ceylon cinnamon and lots of other spices. December 25, 2013 at 6:21am Reply

    • Courant: See what you think of Or des Indes from MPG. December 20, 2013 at 12:37pm Reply

      • Lucas: Might be difficult (MPG was taken out of the only store that carried it in Poland some time ago) December 20, 2013 at 12:46pm Reply

    • george: It has no cinnamon, but the re-release of yohji homme is very nice- a must try. December 20, 2013 at 1:06pm Reply

      • Lucas: thanks December 20, 2013 at 1:11pm Reply

        • george: Fragrantica says it does have cinnamon……….. December 20, 2013 at 1:15pm Reply

    • minette: Patou Ma Liberte? It’s brown with spices and interesting, but may be too dry for your tastes. December 20, 2013 at 2:26pm Reply

    • Asali: Lucas, I had a wonderful Guerlain SA telling me that spraying first Cuir beluga and then layer with Apres L’Ondee was what came the closest to Iris Ganache. Try it, it might work for you :-)
      As for cinnamon, I’d suggest Baume du Doge December 20, 2013 at 3:42pm Reply

      • Lucas: I have samples of both so I will try layering them just as you said. December 21, 2013 at 8:01am Reply

        • Michaela: The best feminine all-year-round cinnamon: L de Lolita Lempicka.
          The best unisex winter cinnamon: Kenzo Jungle Elephant. December 22, 2013 at 12:06pm Reply

          • Kara: Yes, I second Kenzo Jungle L’Elephant! December 28, 2013 at 11:24pm Reply

          • Hildegerd: I love that one. December 29, 2013 at 7:19am Reply

    • maja: Chanel Egoiste is woody with lots of cinnamon. Youth Dew Amber Nude, too. December 20, 2013 at 4:51pm Reply

      • Lucas: Egoiste didn’t work for me but I’ll try Estee Lauder. December 21, 2013 at 8:01am Reply

    • Cybele: Maybe Comme des Garcons White? lots of cinnamon and very smooth December 20, 2013 at 6:27pm Reply

      • Lucas: Just checked it out at fragrantica, I need to try it. December 21, 2013 at 8:02am Reply

        • Cybele: Let us know what you think of it! December 22, 2013 at 12:16pm Reply

    • Hildegerd: Kenzo Jungle Elephant. December 21, 2013 at 7:59am Reply

      • Lucas: thank you. December 21, 2013 at 8:02am Reply

    • Terry: You might find what you are looking for with Organza Indecence. Prominent cinnamon and a bit sweet. This is a long lasting scent that people seem to notice… favorably. December 21, 2013 at 2:24pm Reply

    • Isis: HI Lucas,
      If I remember correctly, SL Cedre has cinnamon. There is also some tuberose in it, so I think it might fit the not-dry and slightly sweet brief perfectly. December 21, 2013 at 7:05pm Reply

    • Olga: Lucas,
      Try Les Belles Delice by Nina Ricci – cinnamon, musk, sandalwood, vanilla:) December 25, 2013 at 12:44am Reply

  • Marsha Smith: Dear Victoria: I am wishing you and your loved ones a Happy Christmas! I printed out the spice blends that you posted on December 21, 2010 and just enjoy reading it over and over since I enjoy reading about holiday customs in different countries. (Of course, I’m an ignorant American!) I’m trying to decide which one to put in my little scent burner. I have finally gathered together cinnamon, cardamom, nutmeg, cloves, star anise and ground ginger.

    If you are still in Europe, I admit to being a little envious since Christmas is so commercialized in the states.

    Again, Happy Christmas! Does Grandfather Frost come to Belgium? December 20, 2013 at 7:47am Reply

    • Victoria: Merry Christmas, Marsha! I also love learning about different holiday customs, even about different regional customs in Ukraine and Russia. And I had no idea until I started researching in earnest that there was so much variation in the gingerbread spices. Hope that you like the one you selected, but with all of those spices, you really can’t go wrong.

      Yes, Father Frost comes to Belgium too, along with a bunch of other Christmas characters! :) December 22, 2013 at 7:12pm Reply

  • Cornelia Blimber: Happy Christmas to you, Victoria and all of you, and especially to the beautiful, funny Viola! December 20, 2013 at 7:53am Reply

    • Victoria: Merry Christmas! Viola wishes your Oscar happy holidays too! She also would love to see his photo (if you want to share it here, you can email it to me, and I will insert it in the comment section.) December 22, 2013 at 7:14pm Reply

      • Cornelia Blimber: Oscar thanks Viola.
        I am very proud of Oscar and will be happy to share his picture with you, all the catlovers on this blog, and Viola! I am not handy enough with my computer, but as soon as my friend is back from Paris, I will e-mail Oscar to you! December 23, 2013 at 5:12am Reply

  • Connie: First of all, happy holidays everyone!
    And now down to business ;)
    I’m looking for perfumes that I might want to wear out at night. I’m generally more into subtle scents with an elegant feeling (Cuir de Lancome, Mitzah, OJ Woman, Bois d’Argent). But I’ve recently gotten more into partying and am looking for perfumes that suit that atmosphere. So far I really love Gold Man, by Amouage- such a lovely powdered civet thing. I really like Rose Oud By Kilian, but it doesn’t last on me at all. Love Une Rose by Frederic Malle, vintage Shalimar, and L’Air de Rien for the same purpose. So please send me your night-out scents, this si an unfamiliar frontier for me :) December 20, 2013 at 8:05am Reply

    • Cornelia Blimber: Hi Connie! My night out scent is Nahéma, the extrait. I bet you ‘ll love it! December 20, 2013 at 8:18am Reply

      • Connie: Hi Cornelia, is Nahema extrait very different from Nahema EdP? The EdP never quite coalesces on my skin… December 20, 2013 at 10:12am Reply

        • Cornelia Blimber: No, not very dfferent in my opinion, it is softer, more velvety. Such a pity it doesn’t work for you! December 20, 2013 at 12:43pm Reply

    • Di: Parfums De Nicolai Odliesque December 20, 2013 at 8:59am Reply

      • Connie: Hi Di, thanks for your recommendation. I’ve tried Odalisque and it’s not my cup of tea- I find the muguet note a bit too synthetic. December 20, 2013 at 10:13am Reply

    • Alicia: I adore Nahema, and love Odalisque. I’ll like to add to the last one, Le temps d’une fete. And by F. Malle, Portrait of a Lady. December 20, 2013 at 9:20am Reply

      • Connie: I absolutely love Le Temps d’une Fete! For me it’s more everyday-wear than party-wear though. But amazing stuff. And PoaL is one I’m looking into trying more intensively, I quite like it. However, it is actually very subtle on me, I was very surprised because it has a reputation for being such a powerhouse. :) December 20, 2013 at 10:15am Reply

    • Heather H: Liaisons Dangereuses
      Eau de Parfum
      by By Kilian

      Absolutely gorgeous, my favorite rose! December 20, 2013 at 9:37am Reply

      • Connie: I love Liaisons Dangereuses and am looking into getting a decant. It’s beautiful stuff, reminds me of a lovely country breakfast. Right now I’m wearing Roses Vanille by Mancera, it strikes me that if you like LD you may also be a fan ;) December 20, 2013 at 10:16am Reply

        • Heather H: Well i’ll have to try it. Thank you! December 20, 2013 at 6:02pm Reply

    • Elisa: Fun! My “night out” rose scents are Rossy de Palma and Broadway Nite. December 20, 2013 at 9:41am Reply

      • Connie: Nice choices! Rossy de Palma unfortunately doesn’t do a whole lot on me, and Broadway Nite is a bit too far on the neon side for my taste. Thanks for your recommendations! December 20, 2013 at 10:19am Reply

    • Lucas: How about Dior Oud Ispahan, an opulent rose, darkened with oud? December 20, 2013 at 11:05am Reply

      • Connie: Oud Ispahan is lovely, but a bit too masculine for my taste, thanks for the recommendation Lucas! December 20, 2013 at 1:38pm Reply

    • Bastet: If you like roses, Ungaro Diva and Agent Provocateur (the original) are both sultry rose perfumes that I like to wear out on the town. December 20, 2013 at 3:37pm Reply

      • Connie: I haven’t tried either of those, I’ll check them out! December 21, 2013 at 7:03pm Reply

      • Michaela: +1! I second your choice, both are true gems! December 22, 2013 at 12:08pm Reply

    • annemariec: My night out fragrance is a classic – Van Cleef & Arpels’ First. Very plush, and perhaps rather dated now for many people, but I love it, especially in extrait (I have a vintage mini). Otherwise I use the EDP. Never tried the EDT. December 20, 2013 at 3:43pm Reply

      • Connie: First is great, but feels a bit too cold for me personally. :) December 21, 2013 at 7:27pm Reply

    • johanob: There’s only 1 night-out perfume in my opinion…Bendelirious!!On my skin it settles into a wonderful,fizzy Iris,and projection is intimate enough for fellow clubbers to notice,but not overwhelm!When I want to REALLY be noticed I add 2 sprays on my clothing…The Top notes really stay alive then! December 21, 2013 at 3:42am Reply

      • Connie: Sounds interesting, I’ll check it out… December 21, 2013 at 7:32pm Reply

    • Squirrely: MFK Lumiere Noire Pour Femme, rosey, sexy, great sillage & lasting power (and my skin eats scents) or Coco, which is an eternal favorite of mine. December 21, 2013 at 8:43am Reply

      • Connie: I’ll try that one next time I’m at Neiman Marcus! December 21, 2013 at 7:41pm Reply

    • Michael: How about Une Fleur de Cassie and Carnal Flower from Frederic Malle? I usually wear them out in the evening, especially for dinners and formal functions. I would also recommend Cuir de Russie from the Chanel Exclusifs range. December 21, 2013 at 8:50am Reply

      • Connie: You’re right on the money with Une Fleur de Cassie, I love it! Carnal Flower I incidently just retried today, and while I’m liking it better, we still don’t quite get along. Cuir de Russie is lovely, but a bit too subtle for a partying scent. :) December 21, 2013 at 7:42pm Reply

    • Victoria: Happy holidays, Connie!

      If you love the idea of Rose Oud, how about Agent Provocateur or Frederic Malle Portrait of a Lady? December 22, 2013 at 7:16pm Reply

      • Connie: Hi Victoria, I need to sample PoaL again, and Agent Provocateur is going on my must test list… Thanks for the recommendations and the wonderful blog! December 22, 2013 at 9:35pm Reply

        • Victoria: Connie, hope that you’ll find something interesting. Also, I just thought of Rosine’s La Folie de Rose, Tom Ford Noir de Noir (although it’s probably overpriced), L’Artisan Voleur de Roses and Dior Gris Montaigne. December 23, 2013 at 2:59pm Reply

    • rainboweyes: It might be not a typical night-out scent, but my favourite is 1889 Moulin Rouge by Histoires des Parfums. It’s very skinny, yet sexy and unique…

      Jovoy Rouge Assassin and Evody Note de Luxe are my other night-out staples. December 23, 2013 at 4:18am Reply

      • Connie: I remember thinking that Moulin Rouge sounded interesting, thanks for the reminder! Rouge Assassin I actually just tested yesterday- it’s absolutely beautiful and very much up my alley, but I have some reservations about the longevity. I’ve never heard of the Evody before, will check it out :D December 23, 2013 at 9:03am Reply

        • rainboweyes: Note de Luxe is an oriental iris, quite sweet though. I can’t wear it too ofen. Maybe YS Uzac Satin Doll is a better option?
          Another elegant scent which I love very much is Parfums DelRae Panache. December 23, 2013 at 10:16am Reply

    • Emily: I wear Bottega Veneta and for the evening I like Chanel Cuir de Russie. December 24, 2013 at 9:52am Reply

      • Connie: I’ve tried Cuir de Russie and love it as both a day and evening scent, but it’s somewhat too subtle for partying. Thanks! December 25, 2013 at 10:11am Reply

    • Eva S.: Have you tried Montale?
      My favourite for a night out is Attar.
      I second MFK Lumiere noir pour femme.
      Happy holidays! December 25, 2013 at 1:57pm Reply

      • Connie: Hi Eva, I haven’t had the chance to try many Montales, but I have thought before that Attar looks lovely. I’ll try to get my hands on some. I also samples Lumiere Noire Pour Femme a few days ago after the earlier recommendation- it doesn’t do very much on my skin. On the other hand, I also got a chance to retry FM’s Musc Ravageur. and I’m loving it! December 26, 2013 at 1:37pm Reply

    • Kara: What about Hermes 24 Faubourg? December 28, 2013 at 11:29pm Reply

  • Alicia: I’d like to express my gratitude for the great pleasure you have given me, and the much I have learned, through your splendid articles and posts.
    All the blessings of the season for you and yours.
    Very Merry Christmas! December 20, 2013 at 9:16am Reply

    • Victoria: Merry Christmas, Alicia! Thank you very much for your kind words. xoxo December 22, 2013 at 7:14pm Reply

  • Heather H: Merry Christmas to all,

    I am looking for a perfume that resembles quelque fleur by houbigant, any suggestions?

    Thank You,

    Heather December 20, 2013 at 9:34am Reply

    • AnnieA: Dita Von Teese, the original perfume, was supposedly created by DVT, who loved Quelques Fleurs but whose boyfriend’s mum wore it… December 20, 2013 at 1:30pm Reply

      • Heather H: Thank you Annie for responding. I’ll try it! Victoria recommended Chanel number 22. I just went to the boutique here in Los Angeles and bought the parfum. It’s gorgeous! December 20, 2013 at 6:00pm Reply

  • zari: I don’t know if these perfumes have rose in them, but I want something like them but more “modern” – Coco EDP/EDT, Boucheron EDP. I do find perfumes like Joy beautiful but severly cloying and like it is wearing me, and I’m not sure if its the jasmine or the roses that’s the problem (just fyi).

    With that said, I am looking for a perfume that is reasonably priced, and evokes autumn, ruminates the whole way with a hum of dried roses (meaning not overtly rose), has maybe some amber, maybe some patcholui, … Thanks, Merry Christmas, and happy new year! December 20, 2013 at 9:44am Reply

    • Bastet: Have you tried Cabaret by Gres? December 20, 2013 at 3:39pm Reply

      • zari: Thank you Bastet, I will try it! December 20, 2013 at 10:27pm Reply

    • annemariec: Sonoma Scent Studio has several rose fragrances which have a vintage feel but are less complex than the perfumes you mention.

      Caron’s Parfum Sacre might also be worth a try? Roses and spices, pepper, myrhh … December 20, 2013 at 3:50pm Reply

      • zari: I have been eyeing Caron’s Parfum Sacre online, but haven’t tried it yet. I will change this! thank you Annemariec! December 20, 2013 at 10:29pm Reply

        • Ziggy: Parfum Sacre is certainly very dry. I LOVE Tocade and it’s inexpensive enough to buy unsniffed. A very unique take on rose. But my favorite rose is Andy Tauer Incense Rose. Stunning–but the incense note is the dominant one. December 24, 2013 at 12:31am Reply

    • maggiecat: Zari, are you in the US? Try CJ Scents’ Velvet – Rose, lily, a little patch, some amber. Very reasonable and absolutely lovely! December 21, 2013 at 3:36pm Reply

      • zari: Thank you Maggie, I will look into it! December 23, 2013 at 10:48am Reply

    • Cybele: I’d say try 31 Rue Cambon, it’s very classic and warm but in a more modern manner. Maybe you would also enjoy Dior J’Adore and Prada Infusion Iris in the Absolue version (gold label). December 21, 2013 at 6:19pm Reply

      • zari: 31 Rue Cambon – I’ve been meaning to try it. Thanks for these recs Cybele! December 23, 2013 at 10:49am Reply

    • Gretchen: Caron Parfum Sacre might be a good choice, and on the discount sites, it’s very reasonably priced. December 22, 2013 at 1:48pm Reply

      • zari: Thank you Gretchen! December 23, 2013 at 10:50am Reply

  • Phyllis Iervello: Merry Christmas to you Victoria and thank you for all your wonderful posts. I look forward to more of the same in 2014! December 20, 2013 at 9:58am Reply

    • Victoria: Merry Christmas, Phyllis! Hope that 2014 will be a great year for all of us. December 22, 2013 at 7:17pm Reply

  • rita sanyal: Sasons greetings & happy new year! December 20, 2013 at 10:02am Reply

    • Victoria: Happy New Year, Rita! December 22, 2013 at 7:17pm Reply

  • David: Victoria,

    A newcomer to your blog, I’ve already benefitted greatly from your extensive knowledge of perfume (and many other things as well) and your wonderfully written posts. Thank you for your learning, your passion, and your willingness to share it with others.

    Here’s looking forward to next year and continuing our searches for that magic scent we each seek.

    All my best to you and yours in this Holiday Season and into the New Year. December 20, 2013 at 10:10am Reply

    • Victoria: David, thank you, and I wish you lots of happiness in the new year and beyond. Hope that you’ll continue to make new, interesting discoveries, and if all of us could help a little along the way, well, even better. :) December 22, 2013 at 7:19pm Reply

  • Whit: I’d love something smoky. We’re talking straight-up firewood cozy smoky. Past “close but no cigar” efforts include Imaginary Author’s Memoirs of a Trespasser (beautiful, but the vanilla amps up to the point where the smoke disappears) and Naomi Goodsir Bois d’Ascese (waaaay too expensive for my purposes).

    Bonus points if there’s some violet in there. Not a requirement. December 20, 2013 at 10:18am Reply

    • Bastet: You might want to check out Sonoma Scent Studio. Several of their perfumes are smokey, particularly fireside intense (I think that’s the name – you’ll find it on the website). December 20, 2013 at 3:41pm Reply

      • Gretchen: I agree about the SSS Fireside Intense. No violet at all, but a tiny spray of Bois des Violettes by Serge Lutens is a good balancing act December 20, 2013 at 6:42pm Reply

      • Whitney: Perfect! I’ve never tried them so thank you for the suggestion! December 22, 2013 at 12:15am Reply

    • Karin: What about Serge Lutens Bois de Violette? December 20, 2013 at 10:56pm Reply

      • Whitney: Oooh, I’ve never tried that one! Love SL but never did try Bois de Violette. Thank you! December 22, 2013 at 12:14am Reply

    • Ann: Way out of my price range but still lustworthy is Mona di Orio’s Violette Fume…

      For a welcoming smoky ambiance I like NV’s Trayee but it doesn’t have violets…

      For woods and sweet pipe tobacco, you might like Scent on Canvas’ Noir de Mars.

      (The Mona di Orio is on my own FB justdreamaboutit list!) December 22, 2013 at 1:14am Reply

  • Nemo: Happy holidays Victoria and everyone else! I am still relatively new to perfume, but I have been voraciously reading BdJ and other perfume blogs for some time. I have recently started venturing into the realm of orientals and I am really really excited to start trying more! The first one I tried and loved was SL Chergui. Are there any others people feel quite strongely I should try? I love wood and incense notes, and I like most spices as well. Thank you! December 20, 2013 at 10:28am Reply

    • Lucas: Nemo, if you’re looking for something similar to SL Chergui (ambery honeyed tobacco) do check out scents like Sonoma Scent Studio Tabac Aurea, Phaedon Tabac Rouge, Tom Ford Tobacco Vanille, Smell Bent Elf-Fulfilling Prophecy. December 20, 2013 at 11:04am Reply

      • Nemo: I have not tried most of those except for SSS Tabac Aurea. I love many of their scents (especially Winter Woods), but I think I found Tabac Aurea a little TOO tobacco-y? It was a while ago, so I should probably give it another sniff. To my insensitive nose, the tobacco in Chergui is so well blended with everything else I don’t immediately identify it as such. I will check out the other perfumes also, thanks for the suggestions! December 20, 2013 at 3:28pm Reply

    • Anne Sheffield: I have never smelled chergui, but recently fell in love with Volutes by dyptique. It has a tobacco note in it and feel particularly velvety, warm to me. It like being in a boudoir with Tolstoy smoking a rich Cuban cigar remaking the world in a snowy winter night. December 20, 2013 at 11:19am Reply

      • Lucas: I second Volutes, fogot to mention it in my comment for you. December 20, 2013 at 11:39am Reply

      • Courant: While you at at Diptyque try 34 Boulevard St Germain. Best Regards December 20, 2013 at 12:43pm Reply

        • Nemo: I have only tried Philosykos and Tam Dao from Diptyque, but I will also look for Volutes and 34 Boulevard St. Germain, thanks! December 20, 2013 at 3:29pm Reply

    • Tomate Farcie: I think a great plus inexpensive perfume would be Kelly & Jones Cabernet, cherry tobacco. You can find it on their website. Good luck December 20, 2013 at 11:38am Reply

      • Cornelia Blimber: Hi Nemo! All the Serge Lutens in this realm are wonderful. Every perfumelover should know Ambre Sultan. Not a sweet amber and certainly an atmosphere of incense. Very spiritual.
        Borneo 1834 is a beautiful patchouli with a hint of chocolate, dark and intriguing. Or the elegant Féminité du Bois. I tried Un Bois Vanille today, thinking it would be too sweet—it is not! The drydown is fresh and woody. Some people do love Serge Noire as an incense, but to be honest, it has too much clove for my nose.
        My absolute favorite incens is Bois d’Encens, Armani Prive. Very expensive, but worth every penny.
        You could love also Avignon (Comme des Garçons) or Zagorsk (Comme des Garçons).
        Or maybe Nu (YsL).
        Happy Sniffing! December 20, 2013 at 12:58pm Reply

        • Nemo: I haven’t tried many other SL perfumes, but all of the ones you listed sound wonderful :) I look forward to trying them out! December 20, 2013 at 3:24pm Reply

      • Nemo: I have never heard of Kelly and Jones, but that combination (cherry, leather, and tobacco flower?!) sounds amazing! Thank you for the tip. December 20, 2013 at 3:25pm Reply

    • AnnieA: @Nemo, I found Bulgari Black to be very similar to Chergui, but maybe it’s too similar. It’s lots cheaper, though. December 20, 2013 at 1:46pm Reply

      • Nemo: I have tried and enjoyed Bvlgari Black very much, though I find it to be different enough to possibly justify owning both :) I particularly like the drydown of BB. December 20, 2013 at 3:21pm Reply

        • Theresa: I have both Chergui and Black, and don’t find them alike at all! My suggestion for something to try for the Chergui-lover is Chanel Coromandel. I’m planning to buy a bottle after the holidays are over…. December 20, 2013 at 4:35pm Reply

          • Hannah: Black is a favorite and I did not like Chergui at all so I’m surprised to hear that they smell almost the same to anyone, but I suppose it might be an issue of skin chemistry. December 21, 2013 at 9:09am Reply

    • Michael: I third the recommendation for Volutes and I would suggest trying both the EDT and EDP as they are significantly different – the former smells crisper and then turns slightly “medicinal” on me, whereas the latter smells fuller, smoother and rounder. December 21, 2013 at 8:40am Reply

    • Victoria: Happy holidays to you too! I also join in suggesting Volutes (and yes, do compare the EDT and EDP, because they’re different enough).

      Another tobacco beauty is Viktor & Rolf Spicebomb. It’s billed as a masculine, but anyone can wear it. December 22, 2013 at 7:21pm Reply

  • Bea: Merry Christmas to everybody!

    I really need your help. My winter signature scent, Midnight Poison from Dior, has been discontinued and I need something to replace it with.
    Description of Midnight Poison: Top note: mandarine and bergamot. Heart note: rose and patchouli. Base note: vanilla and amber.
    It’s described as a woody oriental.

    Any suggestions for a new winter perfume for me? December 20, 2013 at 1:03pm Reply

    • Lucas: Maybe Eau d’Italie Paestum Rose? (rose, spices, smoke)
      Bois 1920 Vetiver Ambrato (woods, amber, vanilla)
      Estee Launder Wood Mystique
      Les Nereides Imperial Opoponax December 20, 2013 at 1:19pm Reply

    • george: Only going by the notes- http://www.pnicolai.com/en/parfums-corporels/12-maharanih-intense.html December 20, 2013 at 1:24pm Reply

    • AnnieA: @Bea — if you are fond of almond then Malle’s Eau d’Hiver is very pretty, although it has none of Poison’s punching power. December 20, 2013 at 1:49pm Reply

    • maja: It is very different but Chanel Coromandel is simply fantastic winter fragrance. December 20, 2013 at 5:26pm Reply

    • Di: For Manderine and rose, you might try Chypre Palatin December 23, 2013 at 2:02pm Reply

    • Bea: I finally have the time to read blogs again, after a hectic winter break. Sorry for my late reply.
      Thank you for your wonderful suggestions! I will go on my new hunt for a spicy winter fragrance this week. January 13, 2014 at 4:41am Reply

  • E K: Happy Christmas Victoria! I have a confession to make: I love the smell of cigarettes. I don’t smoke, but whenever I’m next to someone who does, I find myself inhaling, despite the cost to my lungs. Do you know any tobacco perfumes that smell like cigarette smoke? December 20, 2013 at 1:35pm Reply

    • AnnieA: @EK, there’s Etat Libre d’Orange Jasmine et Cigarette, and there is Tom Ford’s Tuscan Leather, the latter being more of a pipe tobacco. December 20, 2013 at 1:47pm Reply

    • Elisa: Have you tried Jasmine et Cigarette? December 20, 2013 at 1:51pm Reply

    • annemariec: If you have not tried it, give Habanita a go. It is meant to be a classic of this genre because when originally released (1921) it was a perfume used to scent cigarettes (ack!). I actually don’t smell cigarette smoke in it (dirty leather, vanilla, powder, fruit – yes, but no smoke) but a lot of people say they do.

      Actually it has never made sense to me that Habanita would smell like smoke. If it was meant to scent cigarettes why would it smell of cigarettes itself? December 20, 2013 at 4:06pm Reply

    • Alessandra: tom ford’s tobacco vanille December 20, 2013 at 7:26pm Reply

    • Hannah: Bell’Antonio by Hilde Soliani
      My mom is a heavy smoker and it smells exactly like her jacket.
      It’s really expensive but you can get a sample at luckyscent. December 21, 2013 at 9:12am Reply

    • Victoria: Merry Christmas to you too!
      You’ve received lots of interesting suggestions already, and I was also going to suggest Diptyque Volutes for a sweet tobacco scent. It’s less cigarette smoke like than Etat Libre d’Orange Jasmin et Cigarette, but it’s very elegant. December 22, 2013 at 7:23pm Reply

    • Sarah L: Jardins d’Ecrivans George has a leather, cigarette smoke, heliotrope combo that will knock your socks off. January 1, 2014 at 2:58pm Reply

  • Anka: Victoria, Merry Christmas to you and thank you very much for your wonderful blog!! And Andy, Courntey, Elisa, Jillie, Lauren (to read about perfume in Japan was so interesting…), Patricia and Suzanna for their inspiring posts this year! I’ve learned so much and am looking forward to learn and enjoy more next year…
    And happy holidays to all the readers of BdJ! December 20, 2013 at 1:48pm Reply

    • Victoria: On behalf of our team, thank you very much, Anka! Happy holidays to you too! December 22, 2013 at 7:24pm Reply

  • namey: Hi. I’m hoping you guys can help me. Many years ago, I bought a ton of candles from L’Occitane. The scent was Marine (Marina). I’m now down to my last candle and I’ve just discovered that the scent no longer exists! What’s more, there aren’t many mentions of it on the internet, making it difficult to find something similar. I don’t have a very intelligent nose, so I was hoping one of you could suggest a similar scent. The description on the bottom of the candle reads “this fragrance opens out on a floral bouquet swept by an ocean breeze, leaving a delicate scent of amber in its wake.” I know that’s mostly advertising patter, but I thought it might help. Thanks in advance! December 20, 2013 at 4:05pm Reply

    • Victoria: I’ve never tried this candle, so I can’t recommend anything similar, but if you like floral notes, how about trying Pacifica candles like Lotus Garden? December 22, 2013 at 7:27pm Reply

      • namey: I know this is late, but thanks for your suggestion. Unfortunately, Pacifica’s Lotus Garden candle is too floral. The main impression L’Occitane’s Marine/Marina candle left me with was a sea salt, windy scent.

        I wanted to leave this note in case another Marine/Marina candle lover happened upon this post.

        Thanks again. January 3, 2014 at 8:58pm Reply

    • sunnlitt: You might try looking up the scents in the Archipelago Excursion line. They have number of scents that combine to evoke places around the world. December 29, 2013 at 4:31pm Reply

  • leathermountain: I have some odd requests, and I think it would take too long to explain the reasons, so let’s just take the plunge. In all cases I’d prefer scents that are cheap and easy to get, but I’m interested in learning about whatever is out there:
    1. Fragrances with a very pronounced development over time.
    2. Fragrances that are so smello-realistic that people smell them and automatically say, “wow!”
    3. Fragrances that come in different formats — oils, solids, alcohol bases — but based on the same formulae, and which behave very differently in the different carriers.
    4. Other interesting, curious, wow-factor type scents.
    Thank you all! December 20, 2013 at 4:48pm Reply

    • annemariec: 1. Guerlain’s Chamade is famous for its slow development, from a quite bitter green opening to a floral heart through to a warm, vanillic base. It may not be cheap and easy to get though, depending on your circumstances. Fragrances with complex developments are usually good quality work so not cheap.
      2. Smello-realistic – Diptyque’s Philosykos. It’s a most realistic fig: fruit, leaves, bark, earth. So realistic that I find that after the novelty wears off there’s not much else to say. Also, try the Demter line. Simple, realistic smells, quite cheap.
      3. Pass on this one.
      4. Gosh, depends on your taste. I don’t go for wow factor scents because they don’t tend to meld with skin that much. Gucci Rush? Luscious fruit and flowers over a darker base, very powerful and distinctive. At other end of the spectrum is Clinique’s Aromatics Elixir: spices, rose, incense, PATCHOULI, carnation, woods … also very strong. Rush and AE are not expensive. December 20, 2013 at 5:29pm Reply

    • Squirrely: Annemarie has great suggestions.

      leathermountain: I have some odd requests, and I think it would take too long to explain the reasons, so let’s just take the plunge. In all cases I’d prefer scents that are cheap and easy to get, but I’m interested in learning about whatever is out there:

      For you quest 1 & 2 I’ll also add Cartier Baiser Vole edp (easy to find at Nordstrom at least) its a green lily bouquet wallop, but definitely softens through the wear.

      3. Fragrances that come in different formats are naturally going to wear differently (but hopefully not radically so if they’re meant to smell the same?). I would check out Pacifica scents, they do lotions, sprays, candles & solids, all well done. And Lush, which has a perfume line with lotions and body washes. Both lines are accessibly priced or generous with samples in-store.

      4. L’Artisan Dzing! which is meant to smell the the circus (starts of rubbery, drys to a hay-like note, somewhat animalic) or Bulgari Black (similar fun smokey rubber notes). Note sure entirely what you’re looking for, but these are definitely “polarizing” December 21, 2013 at 9:03am Reply

    • Elisa: Perfumer’s Workshop Tea Rose for a hyper-realistic bouquet of fresh roses, it always makes me want to laugh. December 21, 2013 at 12:44pm Reply

    • NeenaJ: For your smello-realistic challenge, I suggest pretty much anything from Demeter. It’s cheap and easy to find (even CVS stores carry the line in the US). My favorite is their Tomato Leaf. It’s so real, you almost expect to find that fuzzy green leaf in your palm.

      Happy Holidays to you all! December 21, 2013 at 6:37pm Reply

  • jjlook: I am looking for candles that subtly (and not fruit-ily, but hopefully inexpensively?) perfume a small apartment. I liked the scent of papier d’armenie, but it disappeared almost instantly. Some Pacifica candles, like Tibetan Mountain Temple, are all right, but most seem a bit strong and artificial…
    thoughts?
    thanks December 20, 2013 at 4:57pm Reply

    • sunnlitt: I like Voluspa candles for their price point and their scents. Sorry, but I am not fond of incense scents, so I cannot recommend any in particular. December 22, 2013 at 12:25am Reply

    • Squirrely: Voluspa candles are nice (and often on sale at Nordstrom online) with good throw, I also highly recommend Thymes candles, thoughtful blends and good throw, esp. for the price point. December 22, 2013 at 8:38am Reply

    • Victoria: Thymes candles are very good for the price. They also have interesting scents. Another line I like is L’Occitane.

      But if you want to perfume your house with incense, why not burn real frankincense? It’s sold online from various herbal shops and from Amazon.com, and it will smell better than any incense scented candle! December 22, 2013 at 7:40pm Reply

  • Alessandra: Merry Christmas to you, Victoria, and to everyone on here!!

    This blog is a delight and so knowledgeable. A pleasure for perfume connoisseurs. December 20, 2013 at 7:32pm Reply

    • Victoria: Thank you very much, Alessandra! Happy holidays to you too. Hope that you have a fun celebration with your loved ones. December 22, 2013 at 7:27pm Reply

  • Jenny: Happy Holidays and thank you for sharing your expertise through your blog.

    1. Could you recommend a perfume for my husband that might be described as a more modern version of pino silvestre? he likes the fresh take of it – and prefers more subtle scents…

    2. For me, any perfume come to mind that you would might call a “cousin” to prada infusion d’iris and infusion d’isis absolue?

    We live in a smaller town in america — there is a sephora and a few department stores — but our fragrance options tend to run in the more commercially available ones.

    Again, thanks for blog and enjoy the holidays.

    Jenny December 21, 2013 at 1:39pm Reply

    • rainboweyes: I’ve no idea of what Pino Silvestre smells like but maybe Chanel No. 19 Poudre would work for you? December 22, 2013 at 12:07pm Reply

    • Victoria: Jenny, have you tried Guerlain L’Heure Bleue? It’s for sure a cousin to Infusion d’Iris, especially the Absolue version. Also, Apres L’Ondee by Guerlain is another one.

      If your husband likes Pino Silvestre, my guess is that he will enjoy clean, classical woods. For instance, Cartier Declaration d’Un Soir, Penhaligon’s Juniper Sling, Lalique Encre Noire, Gucci Pour Homme Intense, Yves Saint Laurent La Nuit de l’Homme.

      Happy holidays to you! December 22, 2013 at 7:38pm Reply

  • johanob: Hello Victoria and everyone!Happy Holidays to all of you all over the world!It is full on summer over here in South Africa,which means summer bbq’s/fresh watermelon and suntan lotion!My perfume request:I’ve been on a “the best Iris perfume” quest for quite some time,and most of the usual suspects have made their way into my collection(Malle/Lutens/ELDO/Chanel/Dior/Prada)Any unusual or unknown Iris recommendations from you guys?Much appreciated!:-)) December 21, 2013 at 2:12pm Reply

    • maja: Hermes Hiris? December 21, 2013 at 4:14pm Reply

      • johanob: Ah yes,have heard some good things about Hiris,I shall investigate asap! December 22, 2013 at 12:34pm Reply

    • Ann: Acqua di Parma”s Iris Nobile is lovely. December 22, 2013 at 1:20am Reply

      • Cornelia Blimber: I agree , Iris Nobile is lovely. Maybe a bit too flowery and lovely for a real iris! but a great perfume.
        There is also an Iris from Aedes de Venustas, never smelled it. And The Different Company has Bois d’Iris, not bad.
        But the best, the most unusual iris is already in your collection: IRIS SILVER MIST!
        For an elegant iris, easy to wear, try Shalimar L’Initial.
        And if you layer L’Heure Bleue with Hiris, you have a very nice perfume. December 22, 2013 at 4:52am Reply

      • johanob: Yes it sure is,I have both the Edt and Edp concentrations! December 22, 2013 at 12:35pm Reply

    • Hildegerd: Yve Rocher Iris Noir.

      It was discontinued this summer, but if you call SA Yve Roucher, I am sure they have some bottles left. December 22, 2013 at 9:05am Reply

      • johanob: Our local Yves Rocher has like two(?!!!?) unimpressive perfumes,sadly!And over here their pricing seems extravagant(niche-like..lol) December 22, 2013 at 12:37pm Reply

        • Hildegerd: Too bad, I love Iris Noir. December 23, 2013 at 5:54pm Reply

    • rainboweyes: I’m an iris lover myself – one can never have enough iris scents :)
      My favourites are:
      Hermès Hiris (my Holy Grail for spring)
      Hermès Eau de Gentiane Blanche (cool and incense-y, great for the summer)
      The Different Company Sel de Vetiver and Miller Harris Fleurs de Sel
      Ramon Monegal Impossible Iris (iris+raspberry)
      Olfactive Studio Lumiére Blanche (iris+almond milk+sandalwood)
      L’Artisan Parfumeur Dzongkha, Eau d’Italie Sienne l’Hiver, Diptyque Volutés (all of them quite smoky, I love them in the winter)
      Parfums d’Empire Equistrius (iris, violets and chocolate)
      Nez a Nez Marron Chic (iris and chocolate too)
      Heeley Iris de Nuit
      Ann Gerard Cuir de Nacré (a very subtle iris+leather combo, I wore it a lot last autumn)
      Van Cleef & Arpels Bois d’Iris (woody and salty)
      Atelier Cologne Silver Iris
      Jovoy Rouge Assassin (powdery and lipsticky)
      Histoires des Parfums Moulin Rouge

      What Chanels have you got in your collection – No. 19 or any of the Exclusives – 31 Rue Cambon and 28 La Pausa? I love all of them!

      And some more suggestions that did not work for me: Le Labo Iris 39, Patricia de Nicolai Odalisque, Penhaligon’s Iris Prima, Byredo 1996, Artisan Parfumeur Skin on Skin and Traversée du Bosphore. December 22, 2013 at 12:00pm Reply

      • johanob: Chanels I have are 28 La Pausa,No 18,No 19,Sycomore and Coromandel.I also have Equistrius which is lovely!
        There are some really nice suggestions on your list!I never knew The Different Co. 1 had a good Iris note?I shall definitely investigate some of your suggestions,thank you! December 22, 2013 at 12:41pm Reply

        • Cornelia Blimber: johanob, I suppose you own Bas de Soie SL already? Not always easy to wear, but this frozen iris/hyacinth is very special. December 22, 2013 at 4:26pm Reply

          • rainboweyes: Agree with you on Bas de Soie being very special, I wear it only when I’m in the right mood. Iris Silver Mist definitely gets much more wearing. But it’s definitely worth a try!

            I almost forgot my current winter favourite (beside Dzonghka) – Ormonde Jayne Orris Noir.

            I’m also planning to blind-buy Annick Goutal L’Heure Exquise next spring. It’s so hart to get, I’ve only seen in in the Goutal webshop. But it seems so get so much perfumista love that I’ve decided to take the risk. I hope it won’t be discontinued by then… December 22, 2013 at 4:44pm Reply

          • johanob: Yes I do!Its a good summer scent in my opinion…!
            Really looking forward to the Iris Silver Mist travel sprays arriving(hopefully!!) in January in South Africa,my name is on the store’s list for at least a couple…budget permitting of course! December 22, 2013 at 6:00pm Reply

            • rainboweyes: I’m glad ISM has finally made it into the export line, I always felt sorry for everybody outside Europe because of the limited availability…

              By the way, do you know Parfums del Rae Mythique and Panache? Two different, but equally beautiful takes on iris. And I believe Eau Illuminée has an iris note, too… December 23, 2013 at 10:30am Reply

              • Victoria: Mythique is one of my favorite irises. The combination of iris and leather is superb here. December 23, 2013 at 2:53pm Reply

    • Maren: Hi Johanob, I did quite a bit of Iris exploring awhile ago and purchased SL Iris Silver Mist and 28 La Pausa as my holy grail irises, but I also loved Van Cleef & Arpels Bois d’Iris and Xjeroff Irisss. Both beautiful but pricey. I also second Hermes Hiris,and Monegal Impossible Iris, both are quite nice. I also love the Chanels you have which I also own, they just do right by iris!
      The Aedes des Venustas is nice, kind of similar to Dzongkha I thought. I also like the Gerard Cuir de Nacre for a leather twist on iris, but Cuir de Russie is excellent for a leather iris i think too. I agree with rainbow eyes, I didn’t care for Le Labo Iris 39 much, or Iris Ukiyoe either. December 22, 2013 at 4:38pm Reply

      • johanob: Me and Leather are unfortunately not the best of friends…Le Labo as a brand doesn’t appeal to me that much either.Glad our “Holy Grails” seem to be the same! December 22, 2013 at 6:03pm Reply

    • Morelle: Amouage Opus V: Orris and rum! The drydown features a bit too much civet for my taste, though. December 22, 2013 at 6:19pm Reply

    • Victoria: Happy holidays!

      If you really want little known, then The Fragrance Republic’s 01 Iris Safran is it. Not sure if it’s the best though. December 22, 2013 at 7:32pm Reply

      • rainboweyes: Have you had a chance to try Iris Safran? I was thinking of ordering it but I’ve no idea how much the shipping to Europe would be… Probably half the value of the perfume… December 23, 2013 at 10:33am Reply

        • Victoria: Yes, I have a sample, and while it’s nice enough, I don’t think that it’s an essential iris. It’s a little too cold and thin for my taste. An interesting iris, but not the best one out there. December 23, 2013 at 2:53pm Reply

    • Connie: Dior’s Bois d’Argent, if you don’t have it already. Also Parfumerie Generale’s Iris Oriental. Iris de Nuit by Heeley. Cuir Ottoman from Parfum d’Empire has a definite iris note, and if you like Equistrius from the same house, you may want to check it out, though they are quite different. L’Artisan’s Iris Pallida, Carner Barcelona’s D600, Aedes de Venustas Iris Nazarena, Parfumerie Generale Felanilla. December 26, 2013 at 2:10pm Reply

  • Isis: Hi everyone!
    I was wondering if anyone has some ideas for a scent for my husband. He now wears Hermès Rocabar and Equipage, and occasionally Eau Sauvage. I would like to find him something ultra sexy and warm. It needs to be a little bit macho and we want to avoid smelling fresh. He liked SL Cuir Mauresque. Ambre SUultan was not it. Egoiste was not it. I am still contemplating if maybe fahrenheit might be just perfect, but there is an in-your-face note along with the smooth leather that I am not sure I want to smell around on a daily basis. What would you guys suggest? My husband is a hardworking theatre technician, so he has a rough side but also a very sensitive one. He will forget to shave but he does read his Tolstoi and his Dostojewski. He is kind of a silent type, but more in a macho way than in a shy way. December 21, 2013 at 7:15pm Reply

    • Cornelia Blimber: how lucky you are with such a husband! Perhaps Marc jacobs BANG ? Spicy, peppery, macho. December 22, 2013 at 4:55am Reply

      • Isis: Thanks Cornelia, I’ll try! December 22, 2013 at 5:55am Reply

    • Michaela: Aqua Fahrenheit would be my choice. It still has that Fahrenheit vibe but it is somehow smoother and nicer. AF is a very wearable fragrance, with a very attractice and interesting violet-grapefruit-leather combo that goes well no matter what season. It is not an aquatic Fahreneit, but a totally new one. Well, I love it on husband! :) December 22, 2013 at 12:19pm Reply

      • Isis: I’ll try it! I have been avoiding the flankers, but maybe I should not be so biased. I’ll also give the original another go, perhaps I can get used to its rough edges. December 25, 2013 at 5:38am Reply

    • maja: I find older Guerlains really sexy. Habit Rouge, of course, and then Heritage which is loud for a moment but the drydown is very silent macho. :) December 22, 2013 at 2:08pm Reply

      • Annie: One Guerlain in particular is L’Instant pour Homme, but that’s because I want all men everywhere to at least try it… December 22, 2013 at 2:40pm Reply

    • Cybele: Yatagan by Caron or L’Instant pour Homme, Guerlain December 23, 2013 at 6:12pm Reply

      • Isis: Interesting that L’instant pour homme has admirers, I’l try it. I was wondering if I shouldn’t be paying more attention to Guerlain… the masculine fragrances are hard to find around here but I’ll track them down. December 25, 2013 at 5:41am Reply

  • Ann: Just wanted to chime in with Merry Christmas! Thank you everyone for being the most excellent procrastination enabler ever! I really love everyone’s stories and advice and learn something new every day.

    I also must share with those of you who are cat lovers that I have been working with our local cat and dog rescue organization to arrange for something very special for my youngest son. He is in his second year of remission from brain cancer and is doing really well and all he’s really ever pined for is a kitten of his own. On Christmas Day two rescue volunteers are showing up on our doorstep because a package got “misdelivered” to their house. They’ll say its for my little guy… and then out of one of their pockets will come the cutest little pink-nose wonder!

    He has no idea… I’ve stocked the house with kitten items and now we just wait…

    Happy holidays everyone! December 22, 2013 at 1:29am Reply

    • Cornelia Blimber: I wish you a happy Christmas too and all the best for your brave little son and his kitten. December 22, 2013 at 4:57am Reply

    • Gina: What a wonderful surprise for him. Merry Christmas to you and yours. December 22, 2013 at 5:21am Reply

    • Squirrely: Oh, how wonderful!

      Best wishes and happy holidays to you and your son! December 22, 2013 at 8:41am Reply

    • rainboweyes: This sounds like a great surprise! Merry Christmas and my best wishes to all of you! Have fun with the new family member! December 22, 2013 at 12:03pm Reply

    • johanob: I love your idea,that is so cool!Hope you have a fantastic festive season! December 22, 2013 at 12:44pm Reply

    • Maren: I can just imagine how excited your little guy will be! Best Christmas ever I bet. Thanks for sharing your story! December 22, 2013 at 4:47pm Reply

    • Victoria: Merry Christmas, Ann! Just thinking about your son’s happy and excited face when he sees his new companion makes me smile. What a wonderful surprise for your little one! Please let us know how it goes. :) December 22, 2013 at 7:31pm Reply

  • Margaret: Please suggest what might be included in a sample set for a 21-year-old who loves Angel and wears Alien. Yes, there is a bit of an ulterior motive here! December 22, 2013 at 12:36pm Reply

    • Hannah: Are you trying to get her to wear something else so nothing in the By Kilian price-range? Throwing some things out there….
      Parfumerie Generale Coze ($100, 50ml. Samples at luckyscent)
      Parfumerie Generale Psychotrope ($100, 50ml. Samples at luckyscent)
      Etat Libre d’Orange Nombril Immense ($80/50ml. Samples at luckyscent)
      Costume National Scent Intense ($94/50ml. Samples at luckyscent) I’m kind of pulling this out of nowhere though
      Parfum D’Empire Ambre Russe ($75/50ml. Samples at luckyscent)
      Serge Lutens Féminité du Bois ($130/50ml. Samples at Aedes)

      available at department stores and Sephora:
      Lolita Lempicka (it’s basically a copy but I prefer it)
      Guerlain La Petite Robe Noire
      Guerlain Samsara

      and maybe
      Le Labo Patchouli 24 ($160/50ml. Samples at luckyscent) December 22, 2013 at 1:19pm Reply

      • Hannah: This probably just seems like I’m throwing spaghetti at the wall but without more information, it is kind of difficult to give suggestions. But maybe some of what I’ve suggested seems applicable for this individual.
        Diptyque L’Eau ($88/50ml. Samples at Luckyscent or Aedes)
        Diptyque Eau Lente ($88/50ml. Samples at Luckyscent or Aedes)
        L’Artisan Parfumuer Traversee du Bosphore ($120/50ml. Samples at Luckyscent or Aedes)
        L’Artisan Parfumeuer Coeur de Vetiver Sacre ($100/50ml. Samples at Luckyscent or Aedes)
        L’Artisan Parfumeuer Voleur des Roses ($145/50 ml. Samples at Luckyscent or Aedes)
        L’Artisan Parfumeuer Mure et Musc ($100/50ml. Samples at Luckyscent or Aedes)
        Serge Lutens Ambre Sultan ($130/50 ml. Samples at Aedes)
        Serge Lutens Louve ($140/50 ml. Samples at Aedes)
        Serge Lutens Chergui ($150/50ml. Samples at Aedes)
        SMV Patchouly ($125/100ml. Samples at Aedes)

        These are also available at several department stores.

        I don’t know where Etro is sold anymore so I can’t give you prices but maybe Gomma, Shaal Nur, Sandalo or Patchouly could work. December 22, 2013 at 2:19pm Reply

    • Di: On the rare side, Annick Goutal, Mon Cherie Par Camille December 23, 2013 at 2:07pm Reply

      • Courant: I am newly in love with this one; it suits my skin and is age appropriate without being old fashioned. The iris does come out but it is so interwoven with all things gallic that I can only say ‘C’est Manifique’ December 23, 2013 at 7:39pm Reply

    • george: Margaret, isn’t your ulterior motive why Chanel made Coco Mademoiselle? I used to make people choke on a trail of Egoiste when it was a lot more potent and fuller than it is now when I was that age. But be pleased your daughter has picked good perfumes; I’m sure she’ll appreciate others that are maybe less bombastic. I’d look at the Serge Lutens range as maybe something to wean her onto. Maybe A La Nuit/La Fille de Berlin/Tubereuse Criminelle/Bois de Violette/Santal Majuscule, respectively a jasmine, a dark rose, an edgy tuberose, a violet wood and a dessertlike Sandalwood. None of them are particularly wallflowers but they are all have that hallmark of being soft and full. Angel is a bit of the olfactory equivalent of that noise at the end of A day in the life by the Beatles- everything playing all at once turned up to ten. Whereas the SL ranges is often about exploring a narrowerer bandwidth of fragrance- sometimes to the fragrances detriment, perhaps. However, the above listed fragrances are some of the ones I like the best, and would make a good varied selection. December 23, 2013 at 4:41pm Reply

    • Hildegerd: Samsara EuP by Guerlain? December 23, 2013 at 5:56pm Reply

      • Margaret: Thank you all for the great suggestions. December 25, 2013 at 11:31am Reply

  • Margaret: Thank you for the suggestions. It would be nice if she’d wear something else (!!!) but this is intended more along the lines of, “How wonderful that you enjoy perfume! Here are some others that you might like.” Expanding her horizons, so to speak.

    Kilian and other niche range are OK, because initially I’ll buy small samples. If she really takes to a scent beyond grape chewing gum, I’ll indulge her. But her own perfume budget is limited.

    Thank you again. December 22, 2013 at 2:45pm Reply

    • Hannah: Does Alien smell like grape chewing gum?
      I had a few strains of thought when I compiled these. Some of them are probably too dry. If she likes to smell like grape chewing gum, I really doubt she’d like the Diptyques I chose. Maybe L’Ombre Dans L’Eau would be better.
      I think she’d like Tom Ford Black Orchid, if she hasn’t tried it. I didn’t mention it at first because I find it overwhelming but she’d probably like it.

      The ones I chose because I was thinking of synthetic (in a self-aware way), sweet, and/or fruity:
      Parfumerie Generale Psychotrope
      Costume National Scent Intense
      Guerlain La Petite Robe Noire
      L’Artisan Parfumuer Traversee du Bosphore
      L’Artisan Parfumeuer Mure et Musc
      Serge Lutens Féminité du Bois
      Serge Lutens Louve
      Lolita Lempicka
      and I said Ambre Sultan but I think I actually mean Arabie.

      If she likes the patchouli in Angel, then Voleur des Roses is still worth a try, I think. December 22, 2013 at 4:33pm Reply

    • Isis: How bout Gucci Rush? Or is that discontinued now? And for a younger girl, I really like Eau de Merveilles. Not exactly a powerhouse but worth a try anyway. December 25, 2013 at 5:36am Reply

  • Soraya: Merry Xmas Victoria!!

    Any chance of reviewing the Oud range by Maison Francis Kurkdjian? I’ve been wanting to purchase the Silk but not sure if the price is gonna be worth it

    Hugs from Malaysia! December 22, 2013 at 5:02pm Reply

    • Victoria: Merry Christmas!
      I wasn’t planning to review these perfumes, because I wasn’t particularly crazy about them. Nicely done, but there are many other ouds out there, and these aren’t the best for me (considering the price). December 22, 2013 at 7:29pm Reply

      • Soraya: Thanks for the heads up! Yesterday I played around with the whole range of Tom Ford…I was in heaven. Had to peel myself away before I made any impulsive purchases. Then walked into Tocca’s range which I didn’t care much for. Finally ended at Jean Patou and it was a toss up between the classic Joy or 1000. I brought Joy home :) December 27, 2013 at 9:23pm Reply

  • Karen: Hi All and Happy Holidays! I’m a few days late to the conversation, but I ‘m looking for a winter scent – something that just reminds you of being outside in the fresh snow taking clear, deep breaths (or compliments it :) – more wintery than holiday. I’m already sold on SL Five O’Clock Au Gingembre, Ginestet Botrytis, and Tom Ford Tobacco Vanille, and I love the lily note of Narcotic Venus wafting up in the cold. I’m not a big foodie or big on incense, but I’m open to all suggestions. Would you please share your experience and faves with me? December 22, 2013 at 5:31pm Reply

    • Hannah: Comme des Garcons Zagorsk is my favorite winter scent.
      I think it smells like being outside in winter rather than incense. I’m considering it for a summer scent, though XD (because it is so wintery)
      Cuir Ottoman and Cuir Pleine Fleur also are very wintery to me, but you’d have to like leather too.
      I smelled a snow accord at the CB I Hate Perfume shop. Winter 1972 is probably good but I’ve never tried it. December 22, 2013 at 5:50pm Reply

      • Eva S.: Hi everybody and Merry Christmas!
        I second Zagorsk, a true winterscent :)
        Other suggestions:
        Serge Lutens: De profundis
        Frederick Malle: Iris poudre
        Chanel no 5 elixir sensuel (works incredibly well in cold weather) :)
        Maison Martin Margiela Replica Lazy Sunday Morning December 23, 2013 at 3:19pm Reply

    • rainboweyes: I often wear Iris Silver Mist in the winter. The initial sharpness reminds me of cold winter air. December 23, 2013 at 10:39am Reply

      • Hannah: I wonder if I’ll ever get to try Iris Silver Mist. December 23, 2013 at 11:27am Reply

        • george: Well, fingers crossed! Quite frankly the most exciting fragrance I’ve tried for a long time: it shocked and delighted me all at once. I’m haven’t bought it (yet) but I’m still giggling with the memory of my couple of sprays. December 23, 2013 at 4:46pm Reply

        • rainboweyes: I’m sure you will! As it’s included in the export line now, it should become more widely available soon. Our local perfumery that carries Lutens and some other niche brands hasn’t got it yet but I’ve seen the black and white refill atomisers at the essenza nobile webshop. I’m sure some of the perfumeries in Hamburg will carry it too. My bell jar bottle is almost empty (I’m wearing ISM today, by the way) so I guess I’ll have to replace it soon. It will be a totally new experience – spraying ISM on my skin instead of dabbing!

          I can also relate to Zagorsk giving you the winter feeling – Dzongkha and Sienne l’Hiver have the same effect on me. December 23, 2013 at 5:45pm Reply

  • Cybele: I am looking for a thank you gift for a girl who wears Jimmy Choo and Loverdose-the latter seems her favorite. I am not intending to convert her to my taste but want to find something she really enjoys…any suggestions? December 23, 2013 at 6:39pm Reply

    • Hannah: I’m not familiar with Jimmy Choo, but based on Loverdose….Lolita Lempicka or L de Lolita Lempicka (either if these would especially make a good gift because the bottles are cute)
      Guerlain La Petite Robe Noire
      Dior Hypnotic Poison
      Viktor & Rolf Flowerbomb
      Gaultier Classique
      Prada Candy
      I haven’t tried it, but maybe Shalimar Parfum Initial
      I’m sorry if these are too obvious
      If you want to get into niche, maybe Traversee du Bosphore. December 23, 2013 at 7:03pm Reply

      • Cybele: Thanks! great ideas! the Lolitas and Hypnotic Poison are intriguing. What would you think of L’Instant Magic? December 23, 2013 at 7:10pm Reply

        • Hannah: I was thinking about including L’Instant. I haven’t tried L’Instant Magic. Based on what fragrantica says, I think could work.
          But I think for a gift, I would lean towards the following: the Lolita Lempickas because the perfumes are nice and they also have a nice presentation. For a gift recommendation for someone who isn’t a big perfumista, these are my initial go-to recommendation.
          Guerlain because it is Guerlain. If she isn’t aware of their reputation, she will probably google it and find out more it.
          Dior, Gaultier, or Prada. She’ll recognize the names, so they’ll probably evoke more excitement than something she doesn’t recognize. December 23, 2013 at 7:22pm Reply

          • Cybele: I will need to try the Lolita Lempickas again- I am not very familiar with them. Thank you for all the tips! December 23, 2013 at 7:29pm Reply

            • Hannah: If she likes Loverdose she will probably like Lolita Lempicka. Actually, I just looked up Loverdose on fragrantica and both LL and L are under “People who like this also like…”. Diesel probably drew from LL, in my opinion. I think Loverdose is nice but LL is noticeably higher quality.
              But anyway, try the Lolita Lempickas, the Guerlains, whatever else and decide which would be best. December 24, 2013 at 5:15am Reply

              • Cybele: Thanks again! I will post here later what I decided upon! December 24, 2013 at 11:22am Reply

    • maja: My niece with similar taste appreciated Lolita very much but also La Petite Robe Noire edp and Insolence edp. :) They are sweet, yes, but well made. :) Oh, and Candy L’Eau. December 24, 2013 at 9:34am Reply

      • Cybele: Thank you! Curious about Insolence, I will try all of them. December 24, 2013 at 11:23am Reply

  • george: O and happy Christmas Victoria and everyone else who contributes to the blog! Simply the best reading on the web! December 23, 2013 at 6:54pm Reply

    • Victoria: Thank you very much, George! Happy holidays to you too. December 26, 2013 at 7:09pm Reply

  • marlene: If you are looking for a spicy scent almost good enough to eat,Jo Malone’s GingerBiscuit is the thing. Fairly long lasting and just a nice change for winter,GingerBiscuit is an unusual perfume with a soothing note of just baked gingerbread. December 24, 2013 at 12:16am Reply

    • Victoria: Sounds delicious! December 24, 2013 at 4:15am Reply

    • Cybele: will check this one out too! thanks! December 24, 2013 at 7:19pm Reply

  • behemot: Hello, I haven’t found much time for perfume lately, but I would like to wish everyone here Merry Christmas and a lot of wonderful perfume next year! December 24, 2013 at 2:17am Reply

    • Victoria: Happy holidays to you too! I also haven’t been wearing much perfume with all of this baking going on. But some orange blossom or rose cologne in the evening feels perfect. December 24, 2013 at 4:16am Reply

  • Martha: Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to everybody here! Thank you, Victoria and friends, for maintaining this wonderful blog. Best wishes for a great 2014. December 24, 2013 at 8:54am Reply

    • Victoria: Merry Christmas to you too, Martha! Here is to a happy, fun and all around wonderful new year for us all. December 24, 2013 at 9:28am Reply

  • Eva S.: Happy holidays everyone!
    I am looking for a high-quality skinscent for me to wear for my love.
    He really like the smell of my skin straight from the shower…and I love perfume! :)
    So I am looking for something like clean, naked skin, but better!
    I have a small, much loved collection of perfume but nothing like this, so I hope you can help me. December 24, 2013 at 3:06pm Reply

    • Hannah: My boyfriend is kind of the same way. He tells me that I smell nice when I don’t wear perfume but almost never when I wear perfume.
      He’s only complimented two of my perfumes: Wonderwood and Muscs Koublai Khan. MKK is a skin scent, but not clean skin. Although, if you don’t use the spray mechanism, it can be pretty light. Have you tried Anyway by Juliette Has a Gun? I only got to try it briefly, but I think I liked it. December 24, 2013 at 4:11pm Reply

      • Eva S.: Hi Hannah!
        Our boyfriends sounds alike ;)
        I will try MKK, I actually have a sample :)
        Happy holidays to you! December 25, 2013 at 12:20pm Reply

    • Victoria: Have you tried Guerlain Cruel Gardenia or Love Chloe? Another skin scent for me is Bottega Veneta Eau Légère. December 25, 2013 at 10:44am Reply

      • Victoria: P.S. Also Chanel Beige and Hermes Hiris. Comme des Garcons Nude is another ok option, but it’s a tad sharp on me. If you have a chance, give it a try. Perhaps, it will work better on you. December 25, 2013 at 10:45am Reply

      • Eva S.: Victoria; thank you for your wonderful suggestions!
        Sometimes I go blind in searching for the perfect scent for our dates, ad I am so happy for all the help I get from you, and fellow perfume lovers on this blog. :)
        I have tried Love Chloe, it sort of gets too powdery on me. Cruel Gardenia-must try! And thanks for reminding me of Bottega Veneta-I have the original, and it is love, love,love…never tried it with my love though, but I definitely should! On me, it is actually a skinscent. I will give it a try on friday when we meet!
        Happy holidays! December 25, 2013 at 12:15pm Reply

  • Julie: Dear Victoria,
    Wishing you a very special holiday season with friends and family alike.
    I’ve so enjoy “tuning in” to your blog on a regular basis as it truly is one of the highlights of my day when I do.

    Here’s to a sweet smelling 2014!

    Julie December 24, 2013 at 4:19pm Reply

    • Victoria: Thank you very much, Julie! Happy New Year to you too. Hope that it will brings lots of happiness and many great scents. :) December 25, 2013 at 10:40am Reply

  • Hildegerd: Any suggestions for me that loves Escada Collecction and now see the liquid in my bottle decrease?? It is a over riped plummy smokey smell and dries down to a musky sandalwood. December 25, 2013 at 7:20pm Reply

    • Victoria: Have you tried Serge Lutens Feminite du Bois? It’s mild on smoke, but it has lots of plummy, woody notes. Not identical to Escada, but it could be another interesting option. December 26, 2013 at 12:54pm Reply

      • Hildegerd: Thank you. December 27, 2013 at 2:11pm Reply

    • Marsha Smith: I am a huge fan of Botrytis which can be found at Lucky Scent and there are several comments under this scent that say it smells very similar to Escada Collection. January 4, 2014 at 8:20pm Reply

      • Hildegerd: Thank you, I need to check up that. January 4, 2014 at 9:35pm Reply

  • Sandra: I am chiming in late. I am getting married in June here in NYC. I have tried some recommendations like beautiful/and some of the private collection by EL , but it’s just not my thing. Also, my husband to be is Indian and I am not, but wanted to wear something that will give a nod to his culture and withstand a potential hot summer day in NYC. My first thought was Shalimar Initial.. But I am open to suggestions December 27, 2013 at 3:38pm Reply

    • Victoria: Congratulations on your wedding, Sandra! The most traditional Indian wedding scents are jasmine, sandalwood, rose. You could definitely go for Shalimar or any of its flankers, and it will be a perfect choice. Do you like jasmine? If so, Serge Lutens A La Nuit is one of the best, but you really have to love jasmine to appreciate it. For something lighter yet with lots of presence, I would recommend Estee Lauder Jasmine and White Moss or Tuberose Gardenia (plusher). Chanel Gardenia is another white floral I’m starting to like more and more, and I can see it as a beautiful wedding perfume. December 27, 2013 at 3:47pm Reply

      • Sandra: Thanks! I have tried the ones from EL private collection but they gave me a headache :( I think it would only bother me more in the heat. I am wearing a traditional white gown but will be wearing some other accents blend both of our cultures (like jewelry) and henna. I will give SL a try! Many thanks December 27, 2013 at 5:00pm Reply

        • Victoria: Have you tried L’Artisan La Chasse Aux Papillons? That’s a perfume I wore for some parts of my Indian wedding, and I got lots of compliments on it from my husband’s family. It’s a blend of tuberose, jasmine, linden blossom. It worked well in the heat too, because it’s not too heavy. December 27, 2013 at 5:19pm Reply

          • Sandra: I have not tried that, sounds beautiful. How wonderful that you had an Indian wedding!!! Wow ! I am sure you looked like a goddess December 27, 2013 at 6:24pm Reply

      • Sandra: I read you review on Serge Lutens a la nuit and I loved how you layered it with a sandalwood scent from the same line. I may try that, to keep with tradition , and throw dome rose in their somewhere ;) December 29, 2013 at 4:06pm Reply

  • Suzanne: Bond No. 9 has a lot of gourmand scents they are absolutely delicious! They are also extremly long lasting. Also, I am a sucker for fun packaging, each bottle represents a neighborhood in NYC!

    Hope everyone has a great smelling 2014! December 27, 2013 at 5:36pm Reply

  • Louise: Hi there, I am on what appears so far a futile search, loved my Very Valentino….would happily wear it 24/7/365 but it disappeared without warning and I cannot find a scentalike to replace my lost love….any ideas? January 3, 2014 at 7:14pm Reply

    • Victoria: Not smell alikes, but in the similar floral oriental style as Very Valentino–Nina Ricci Premier Jour and Burberry Touch for Women. You can also go to your local department store and try asking for a floral oriental with green notes. If you happen upon a sales associate who might know their stock, they could help you further to narrow down the choices. January 4, 2014 at 8:17am Reply

  • Marina: Hi! I used to love wearing Paloma Picasso Mon Parfum as it smelt beautiful on my skin and I received countless compliments. Now it appears to be discontinued (you can buy EDP on the internet but the smell is off so either old stock or fake). I was wondering if you could recommend a replacement perfume? I also like the original Coco Chanel and Narciso Rodriguez For Her Musc Oil to give you an idea of my taste. I do so miss Paloma and am having a hard time finding a new signature scent which is seductive but classy. Any suggestions? Thanks! January 21, 2014 at 11:45pm Reply

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