Jo Malone Tuberose Angelica : Perfume Review

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Jo Malone’s image of casual elegance and minimalism have given the brand an edge over other perfume houses vying for over-the-top glamour and in your face luxury. The bottles are simple, the beige packaging has a retro charm, and the collection is presented in such a way as to remove the intimidation factor. You’re encouraged to layer, blend and mix to your heart’s content. The perfumes are usually based around single note ideas like rose, grapefruit, bluebell, or in combinations that are either trendy (oud) or reassuringly comforting (pear & freesia, tea & bergamot.) The only aspect of Jo Malone that’s not understated is the price.

tuberose angelica

Over the past few years, Jo Malone’s retail prices have been on the rise. It mirrors the general trend in the luxury market, but I was nevertheless taken aback when I returned to repurchase a bottle of Orange Blossom cologne. At $115 for a 100ml bottle, it’s no longer an affordable indulgence; this kind of expense needs to be planned in advance. If I wanted to treat myself to the latest launch, Tuberose Angelica, I’d have to spend even more for the same amount, $145.

Depending on one’s budget and means, these perfumes may not break the bank, but at the current price range, the tenacity and character of Jo Malone’s fragrances leave a lot to be desired. Simple floral colognes are a dime a dozen, and if you don’t mind putting up with slightly less chic bottles, you can find decent alternatives at Bath & Body Works, Gap, and Demeter.

This was my main impression when I tested Tuberose Angelica, the latest addition to Malone’s Cologne Intense collection. The perfume is built around the contrast of creamy white flowers and sweet woods. The starting point is intriguing, because you experience the delicate softness of petals against the dark, rich background. At first, Tuberose Angelica feels bright, with plenty of juicy orange and pink pepper to create a sparkling effect. The clean jasmine and milky tuberose set the main stage, and the heart is heavy on the fruit and coconut nuances of these floral notes, rather than anything animalic and sweaty.

The darkness I mentioned earlier comes thanks to amber and sandalwood. This is a similar twist as used in Robert Piguet Fracas, but Tuberose Angelica never even gets close to being a femme fatale. The perfume’s idea is interesting, but it doesn’t seem fleshed out. The longer it sits on skin, the more diluted the character becomes. The tuberose with its coconut milk and amber are still there and Tuberose Angelica lasts better than many other Jo Malone offerings, but it stops being distinctive after about an hour. You simply end up with yet another nice white floral with an oriental twist.

You can certainly do worse in the tuberose market than Tuberose Angelica. Just consider Miller Harris’s bland Tuberosa, which will set you back around $250. But then again, you can make your $145 go a longer way by considering other white florals that are comparable, if not better, than Jo Malone’s: Jennifer Aniston, Madonna Truth or Dare, Michael Kors, Marc Jacobs, Juicy Couture, and Burberry London.  Jo Malone’s parent brand, Estée Lauder, offers a terrific tuberose in its collection: Tuberose Gardenia, and at $145 for 75ml, it’s only a fraction more expensive per volume and a far better value.

Jo Malone Tuberose Angelica Cologne Intense is available at Jo Malone boutiques and counters. 100ml/$145

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90 Comments

  • Ann: I like Blackberry Bay the most. If it lasted I’d buy a bottle. April 3, 2014 at 8:04am Reply

    • Victoria: I know that others complained its poor lasting power too. April 3, 2014 at 10:41am Reply

  • Eric: Jo Malone’s price went up last year again. It wasn’t a big increase, but it was enough for me to notice. Cologne Intense aren’t intense enough and I haven’t tried anything that i liked. April 3, 2014 at 8:27am Reply

    • Victoria: I think that the price increase in the US was around $5, which isn’t huge, as you say. But when you suddenly realize that you’re paying so much for a bottle of simple cologne, it feels like too much. April 3, 2014 at 10:40am Reply

  • Elisa: I just avoid this line entirely. I do like the fig one and there are probably good ones I haven’t tried, but the brand annoys me and I can’t be bothered to work my way through the whole collection.

    I always forget about Juicy Couture but I really like it actually. The parfum was especially nice. April 3, 2014 at 9:12am Reply

    • Victoria: I used to like it very much for the simple, uncluttered fragrances, but at the current prices, they don’t seem like a good deal. Of course, there are many other overpriced perfume brands or subcollections within brands, so Jo Malone is hardly the only line guilty of pricing itself into the luxury market.

      Juicy Couture is terrific. How does the parfum compare to the EDP? April 3, 2014 at 10:38am Reply

      • Elisa: Less of that bubblegummy top note and gets to the lovely sandalwood/vanilla drydown faster. Really pretty! April 3, 2014 at 11:00am Reply

        • Marika: I only smelled Viva La Juicy. It was good at first but then it turned into the horribly synthetic musk and I had to wash it off. April 3, 2014 at 11:14am Reply

          • Victoria: I remember Viva La Juicy being much sweeter than the original, with more gourmand notes. Juicy Couture is still my favorite out of their range. April 3, 2014 at 12:16pm Reply

        • Victoria: It sounds great, especially if the bubblegum sweetness is minimized a bit. I smell Juicy Couture often enough, since it’s such a big seller, and it really stands out. April 3, 2014 at 12:13pm Reply

    • Austenfan: I’ve avoided Jo Malone as well. I don’t even know why. Now it seems a little late to start exploring, although I would still like to try Lime Basil and Mandarin. April 4, 2014 at 6:19am Reply

  • Ashley Anstaett: I like their White Jasmine and Mint fragrance a lot in the summer, but someone gave me a bottle because they didn’t like it. I also have a soft spot for their Orange Blossom, because it’s so darn happy! It’s too bad that the price went up so much. I used to buy a small bottle once in a while, but I probably won’t continue to do so with the price increase.

    Another rainy day in Missouri, so I tried out my sample of Tom Ford’s Champaca Absolute. Oh my word, it’s so rich. I love it! April 3, 2014 at 9:21am Reply

    • Victoria: I like a few fragrances, and many of them are easy to wear and pleasant enough, but you can find so many similar alternatives for much less money that the price for Jo Malone is no longer justified. BBW Tuberose Petals was one of my favorite budget tuberoses, but it seems to have been discontinued.

      Champaca Absolute is a bombshell. For some reason, I keep thinking of it is a light floral (I might be confusing it with something else), so whenever I wear it, I’m taken aback for its volume. April 3, 2014 at 10:33am Reply

  • George: The Jo Malone line reminds me of a modernised version of the Country diary of an Edwardian lady aesthetic from the eighties, and also the Victorian and Edwardian hobby of flower paintings on which it was based, except instead of pages of hand painted flowers one has the perfumery equivalent. Because of the emphasis on single notes, I always feel more like I am entering an artshop that sells tube of paint than a grand gallery. You can get a 100ml bottle of Gardenia Passion for that price. On to my list of tuberose perfumes to try or buy it does not go, I’m afraid. April 3, 2014 at 9:29am Reply

    • Victoria: I was going to mention Gardenia Passion as a better tuberose example (the name aside, it has little to do with gardenias), and it’s a far better deal. Serge Lutens Tubereuse Criminelle is more expensive per ml ($150 for 75ml), but it’s more interesting perfume. April 3, 2014 at 10:23am Reply

  • Marika: Truth or Dare is the only celebrity perfume I liked. It stays very white floral through-out. For summer it’s too heavy so I would love any suggestions for a light white floral. April 3, 2014 at 11:09am Reply

    • Victoria: Gap Sheer Tuberose and Michael Kors Sheer are pretty good. I also like Ralph Lauren Blue for a watery, sheer white blossom. If you want to try the smaller lines, then Annick Goutal Un Matin d’Orage is a very good light floral as is L’Artisan La Chasse Aux Papillons. April 3, 2014 at 12:16pm Reply

    • Bastet: I love to wear EL Tuberose Gardenia in the spring and summer – it never seems too heavy, even in the Virginia heat and humidity. But then again, I also wear (very lightly) Fracas and Songes in the heat! April 3, 2014 at 1:36pm Reply

  • Alicia: Thank you for this review, Victoria. Several of my friends are enthusiastic with Jo Malone, and Creed. I am underwhelmed by those Malone’s I have tried, and (except for GIT, which I bought for a friend) i feel the same, and sometimes even dislike, Creed’s offerings. Both are expensive, of course. With all the Guerlains, Chanels, Tauer, Malle and Lutens, why would one buy a Malone when one is tempted to splurge? Tuberose, the great dames, Fracas, Malle, Lutens, and the delightful E. Lauder, Tuberose Gardenia, are enough for me. Besides, the Malones I have tried are fleeting, and my tuberoses do last. April 3, 2014 at 11:22am Reply

    • Victoria: When their perfumes were less expensive, I liked the line much more, because it’s really a fun collection. I still occasionally recommend them, but thinking about it further, I realized that for the price, you can find much better options. You mentioned one of my favorites, Tuberose Gardenia, which is owned by the same brand that develops Jo Malone, Estee Lauder. April 3, 2014 at 12:20pm Reply

  • JK: You didn’t mention another great tuberose Jean Paul Gaultier Fragile. The best one! April 3, 2014 at 11:28am Reply

    • Victoria: I agree, it’s very well-done. But it has been discontinued, so it might be hard to find these days. April 3, 2014 at 12:17pm Reply

  • Sandra: I could never get into Jo Malone. Though it has a big following. Lots of my coworkers are big fans, and one that left to go back to Korea I bought her a bottle and she went on and on about all the different kinda she likes. So there is a lot of enthusiasm.
    I remember one of my friends dragged me to Neiman Marcus to show me all her favorite Jo Malone scents and she really wanted me to get into it. I just couldn’t , she was more disappointed that me!
    These days I rarely but full bottles of anything, unless it’s really something special. Today I am wearing Carnal flower, but it’s just a sample of it. This is my sort of “affordable” way to try things without splurging.
    Also, places like bath and body works have great affordable options. I have there Jasmine\vanilla lotion and every woman who has used it in my bathroom thinks it’s the cats meow. April 3, 2014 at 12:17pm Reply

    • Victoria: I guess I’m also getting more and more frustrated by the overpriced fragrances, especially in niche lines. In some cases, one can justify the price, but in many others, it just seems like the brand wants to be seen as high-end, which requires high-end prices. Some Jo Malone perfumes are very pretty, but at the niche level prices, they don’t seem to be worth the trouble. At least, to me.

      BBW has some terrific options, and although people seem to look down upon this brand, they actually spend a lot of time developing their perfumes. Just because something is inexpensive, it doesn’t mean that it’s badly made or bad quality. I haven’t tried the Jasmine Vanilla lotion, but I received a sample of sugar scrub and really enjoyed the scent. April 3, 2014 at 12:29pm Reply

      • SallyM: I think you’ve hit two nails on the head here, Victoria. If a perfume can warrant its high end price level then I’m on board and will save and splurge, no questions asked. But I agree that many houses seem to be so gung-ho with wanting to be included in that high-end/luxury category that they don’t make the product fit the $$$ tag. It’s starting to feel a bit like we’re being taken for a ride – like we wont notice that the juice in the bottle doesn’t measure up to the price. Jo Malone’s perfumes are hit and miss with miss – some are very nice, but there’s the rub. I don’t want “nice” to cost that much, and I certainly cant see layering more nice on nice for twice/thrice the price (I’m in a rhyming mood!). The second nail is that no, simply because something is inexpensive doesn’t mean its inferior. I’ve found a lot of loves with so-called “drugstore” fumes, which many people scoff at. Great review as usual. April 3, 2014 at 2:35pm Reply

        • SallyM: *hit and miss with ME* April 3, 2014 at 2:36pm Reply

        • Victoria: I like your rhymes, Sally! 🙂
          The irony is that some mass market brands spend more effort developing perfumes than certain niche brands. Jessica Simpson’s Fancy Nights that Andy reviews last week is a good example. It’s a celebrity perfume, which usually means something not very exciting, but in this particular case, it’s very good and can hold its own next to many more expensive fragrances. April 3, 2014 at 5:17pm Reply

        • AnnieA: SallyM, I hear you! I’d be happy to buy JM if the price point was, say, thrice the price of Bath and Body Works (which sadly falls into cheap-but-not-nice). April 3, 2014 at 6:56pm Reply

      • The Perfumed Veil: Exactly. I detest houses that come out with super expensive perfumes that only the clearly rich can ever afford to sample. I am talking about you, Puredistance, by Kilian and Dead of Night (Retail price for the 20 ml bottle is $495. Dead of Night is also available in a 10 ml roll-on glass bottle for $245 and a 1.25 ml glass bottle, for $45.) April 3, 2014 at 3:02pm Reply

        • Victoria: Kilian’s refills are a good value, and they spend quite a bit on the formula itself, so I don’t find the line as aggravating as some others. On the other hand, some of their perfumes don’t stand out, and since they have such a large collection, it’s starting to lose its coherence. April 3, 2014 at 5:25pm Reply

    • Ashley Anstaett: Sandra, I’m addicted to Bath and Body’s Dark Amber cologne and the 2-in-1 shower gel. I used my dad’s when I was home a year or so ago, stole his bottle (he’s not very particular, so he didn’t mind) and have used it as my regular shower gel since. I will have to try the Jasmine Vanilla, it sounds lovely! April 3, 2014 at 4:04pm Reply

      • Sandra: I will look for this, thanks for the recommendation
        Thats sweet of your Dad to let you run off with his supply! Sounds like selfless caring man! April 3, 2014 at 5:26pm Reply

      • Victoria: My husband uses Dark Amber shower gel, and it smells great on him. Another one I like a lot is Twilight Woods. April 3, 2014 at 5:26pm Reply

  • maja: I tried Tuberose Angelica only on that fancy piece of black cloth and I wasn’t impressed enough to try it on skin. I didn’t ask about the price but now I am glad I don’t like it. 🙂

    Speaking of tuberose I bought a bottle of Mahora for 30 euros and it will definitely last a lifetime 🙂 I do not find it tropical as I thought I would and I actually like the tuberose note very much. The drydown is a bit heavy on sandalwood but I am waiting for warm summer nights to try it out properly. April 3, 2014 at 12:26pm Reply

    • Victoria: Mahora is a drop by drop kind of perfume for me. You need such a small amount to be perfumed head to toe that I can imagine that your bottle won’t be empty anytime soon. Otherwise, I’d be reading news about your town being evacuated. 🙂 But in small doses, it’s enveloping, comforting and sensual. I also can’t imagine wearing it on a hot day, but in the evening, it would be perfect. April 3, 2014 at 12:33pm Reply

  • OperaFan: I guess Jo Malone must know its clientele well enough to promote this, especially as you noted that EL had the great Tuberose Gardenia, and Aerin just recently launched a similar fragrance. I, for one am happy with my Gardenia Passion and AG Passion, along with my little decant of Carnal Flower.

    It’s too bad in general that so many companies have hiked up the prices for the privilege of wearing their watered down products. I can’t imagine paying so much for something that won’t last more than an hour without having to huff and puff into the point of application. April 3, 2014 at 12:35pm Reply

    • Victoria: Aerin’s fragrance is nicely done, but again, too expensive for what it is. But I like Private Collection and find all 3 perfumes to be interesting and long-lasting. For delicate florals and sheer tuberoses, there are many other less expensive lines than Jo Malone. I don’t know what the prices of Annick Goutal will be with the new ownership; this remains to be seen. April 3, 2014 at 5:02pm Reply

      • Rowanhill: What are the news with the ownership? April 4, 2014 at 5:48am Reply

        • Victoria: Korea’s Amore Pacific is the owner of Annick Goutal perfumes and has been for the past couple of years, I believe. But they’re in process of changing many things about the brand, including the distribution rules. I don’t know how it will all pan out for the perfumes themselves, but I was told by a couple of stores that they will no longer be carrying the line due to the stringent new requirements. April 4, 2014 at 6:42am Reply

  • The Perfumed Veil: A fair and informative review, as always. I love Jo Malone but have been frustrated by the lack of tenacity of their perfumes. The only one that lasts, and is incredibly original, is Pomegranate Noir. It is one of the only perfumes that I actually purchase a new bottle of once I run out.

    I tried all the colognes in the Intense line and by God, they are not intense at all! They may be a bit better than the regular colognes in staying power, but for that price, there are so many beautiful niches that can be had! I don’t consider JM niche.

    The one Cologne Intense that I purchased is Velvet Rose & Oud because the rose was yummy and if you spray yourself head to toe, it lasts enough to be worth it for me. April 3, 2014 at 1:53pm Reply

    • Victoria: Yes, I think so too. Tuberose Angelica lasted really well on me, but I don’t feel compelled to spend that much. I like some of Jo Malone’s candles and body products, though. For instance, Orange Blossom is terrific. April 3, 2014 at 5:05pm Reply

  • Jaime: Thank you for this very practical review! It’s so useful to find out when something maybe isn’t worth the price, and that there are other options instead. I never mind spending the money on quality, so it’s good to know when a perfume is worthy (or not) of its price increases. April 3, 2014 at 2:02pm Reply

    • Victoria: That’s my thinking too. If something is worth the price, then it’s different story. Of course, apart from the objective value (quality of perfume itself, the materials that comprise it, etc.), there is the objective element of falling in love with the scent. And that’s something that can’t be quantified easily. April 3, 2014 at 5:07pm Reply

  • Merlin: I do find the Intense range to be richer and more interesting than the rest of the Jo Malones – but I haven’t found one I love enough to purchase yet. For those prices I really have to love it! I remember liking the Velvet Rose & Oud as well as the Bergamot & Oud. I think there is a Vanilla & Rose, or something similar which is quite nice too. April 3, 2014 at 2:58pm Reply

    • Victoria: I like them too, but just not enough to spend that much money. $145 is a lot for me to spend on a bottle of perfume without some careful consideration and cost-benefit analysis. 🙂 April 3, 2014 at 5:19pm Reply

  • solanace: The femme fatale in me just says meh. April 3, 2014 at 5:35pm Reply

    • Victoria: One should always listen to one’s inner femme fatale. 🙂 April 3, 2014 at 5:54pm Reply

      • Solanace: Voilà. 🙂 Even if I dress quite demure, I’m more of a Dana Tabu kind of gal. April 4, 2014 at 6:32am Reply

        • Victoria: Oh la la! 🙂 (I’m thinking of that famous Tabu ad featuring a kiss.) April 4, 2014 at 6:37am Reply

    • George: hahahah! April 4, 2014 at 5:13am Reply

    • Austenfan: Like “computer says no” ! April 4, 2014 at 7:08am Reply

  • Lynn Morgan: I will give it a sniff the next time I cruise through Neiman Marcus, because j’adore tuberose, but I have always found the Malone scents a tad simplistic, kind of like Crabtree and Evelyn or Penhaglion (is that the right spelling?) for their premium price.And no; they do not linger. I like a little more fragraqnt “bang” for that high-tockey buck. April 3, 2014 at 5:45pm Reply

    • Victoria: Definitely try it, if you’re around the counter. I liked wearing my sample–it’s a pleasant, wearable perfume. By the way, Crabtree and Evelyn just released a much more expensive line in its own bid to upmarket the brand. April 3, 2014 at 5:57pm Reply

  • Marilyn Arnold: Thanks for the review. I haven’t tried the line of Jo Malone yet and I don’t think I will. Have there been any reviews on Dayna Decker yet? Im a newbie to the site? April 3, 2014 at 6:40pm Reply

  • Andy: I, like many others, have pretty much ignored Jo Malone. I actually really like simple soliflore-style fragrances, but not for their prices. The ones I have sampled were quickly forgotten anyway. In any case, the real curiosity that came to me is, what does Angelica smell like? I’ve never come across the plant to smell it, or smelled any of its associated raw materials. April 3, 2014 at 7:25pm Reply

    • Sally: Hi Andy, I have Angelica (Dong Quai) in my herb garden – its mainly the roots that are used in herbalism and for aromatherapy. The plant itself smells very “green” and sharp – it reminds me of juniper. The essential oil has a peppery smell to me – quite sharp too, but also earthy if that makes sense. Some people get musk from it but I don’t. April 4, 2014 at 4:05am Reply

      • Victoria: Angelica used in perfumery comes from a different variety than Dong Quai, from Angelica archangelica, but you’ve made me wonder how similar or different they might be. April 4, 2014 at 6:47am Reply

      • Andy: How interesting! Even if it’s not the perfumery Angelica, thank you for the info about this species you grow. April 4, 2014 at 9:22am Reply

    • Victoria: Angelica smells green, earthy and musky to me (the oil contains a lot of pentadecanolide, which is a terrific vegetal musk). It also has a sweet, spicy accent, and a hint of carrot. April 4, 2014 at 5:56am Reply

      • Andy: Thank you! I knew it was somehow associated with being musky. April 4, 2014 at 8:34am Reply

  • Jo: Thanks for the review Victoria.
    I understand what you mean about Jo Malone, however I feel there is more to it. When I originally bought my Vanilla & Anise in 2009 the 100ml bottle was £64, which was the same price as most designer fragrances of the same size at the time. The same bottle is now £78. Yet this is still, sadly, en par with many designer fragrances (Narciso Rodriguez for her EDP 100ml is £76 or so, Dior, and Chanel similar or more).
    I think it therefore depends. I don’t have much trouble with staying power and Jo Malones… my favourites all last 8-10 hours on me. But if they don’t last on you then I can see that it may not be worth it.
    Jo Malone seems to be a house that is frequently criticised for staying power versus price point, yet I can think of many houses for whom this is also an issue – Annick Goutal, Hermes, Penhaligon’s, Ys Uzac, Byredo, L’Occitane, many by Frederic Malle, etc.
    I think the issues you raise go beyond just Jo Malone, and reflect a broader trend. Many houses now charge more for less. April 3, 2014 at 7:45pm Reply

    • Victoria: I agree with you, Jo, and as I mentioned in the review, it’s part of a general trend. Charging more for less and also pricing brands into the luxury category. My complaint is more about the value of perfume for the price. Many designer brand fragrances like Chanel or Narciso Rodriguez are still much better value for your money than Jo Malone (and not just in terms of tenacity, which is a somewhat subjective perception anyway.) 100ml of Chanel No 19 costs $120, but the perfume is of much higher quality (in terms of materials, composition, creativity) than most of Malone’s colognes.

      Now, I’m not saying that that Jo Malone is not a good brand or that people shouldn’t try these perfumes. On the contrary! There are lovely perfumes in the collection (even if overpriced, in my opinion.) My recommendation is just to sample several similar perfumes in different price ranges and to make a decision based on that. Perhaps, one might find that Jo Malones still hit the spot more than all Chanels put together. An emotional response to perfume is so subjective that at some point, you can’t put a value on that. April 4, 2014 at 6:10am Reply

  • Maren Wilbur: One of the selling features that I often hear from sales associates is that they are to be layered, which bothers me because it’s a way to up sell the product. For the price, I would like to not have to layer for a complex fragrance, isn’t that the art of the perfumer? It does seem like the glorified version of BBW for people with way more disposable income than me. I haven’t tried any that really wowed me, but just the other day I did get to try the new Wisteria and Violet and it was nice, but not enough for me to buy. April 3, 2014 at 8:00pm Reply

    • Victoria: I liked some body products too, such Red Roses bath oil. But spending $300 on two bottles of perfumes to layer is definitely out of my price range. April 4, 2014 at 6:11am Reply

  • Rina: I’m confused…I was in a JM boutique today and they told me the Tuberose wouldn’t come out till October… Are we talking about the same one or was this SA numpty? April 3, 2014 at 8:32pm Reply

    • Victoria: Maybe, it’s different in the US? I’m not sure, Rina. It launched here in Europe last month. April 4, 2014 at 6:11am Reply

  • Michael: The problems I have with Jo Malone fragrances are 1) tenacity 2) value for money and 3) quality.

    1) Tenacity: All Jo Malone fragrances only come in cologne form, which means you have to get the 100ml bottle and use at least 6-8 squirts each time in order for it to last. The only other way of extending the life of the fragrance on my skin is to apply the body crème first, followed by spritzing the cologne of the same fragrance, which means an additional expenditure of £50, which leads me to …

    2) Value for Money and 3) Quality: Given the fact that a 100ml bottle of Jo Malone cologne costs £78 and a 50ml bottle of say, Ormonde Woman EDP costs £80, I would prefer to pay a little extra to purchase the latter, as it is a more unusual fragrance and you also need less of it. I think my friend hit the nail on the head when he commented that Jo Malone fragrances are for people who “prefer their perfumery to be less demanding”. IMHO the only fragrance that truly stands out amongst the range is Lime Basil & Mandarin. Ironically, one of their best fragrances has been discontinued – Stephanotis & Cassia Café Cologne was a unusual fusion of the caramelised, raffish note of coffee and radiant, blowsy stephanotis lilies. According to Jo, the inspiration behind this fragrance was the juxtaposition of a bunch of the aforementioned lilies and a bag of coffee beans at the counter of Dean & DeLuca.

    I stopped being interested in Jo Malone as a brand when Jo stepped down as Creative Director in 2006. After the Jo Malone was sold to Estee Lauder Group, they tried to “milk” it like a cash cow by expanding rapidly, but this tactic backfired and at one point they were ready to offload it to a private equity firm for £19m after having paid £12 for it a few years ago. April 3, 2014 at 8:55pm Reply

    • Victoria: There are definitely some nice perfumes in the collection, as such Lime Basil & Mandarin. I also like Pomegranate Noir, which is fun and memorable. I also liked Acacia Blossom, but I don’t think that it’s available anymore. April 4, 2014 at 6:21am Reply

  • annemarie: Jo Malone is a lifestyle brand it seems go me, and you either buy into it or you don’t. If you do, you let JM choose a fragrance wardrobe for you. You are trusting JM to ensure you will have something suitable and tasteful for all occasions. You don’t have to think too hard. Its like getting a fashionable firm of interior decorators to do up your house in a pallete of the most on-trend colors. Plenty of people are happy to pay for that.

    Lack of tenacity is characteristic of a lot of modern perfumery, so of course JM is not going to risk a departure. Makes me want to reach for the Youth Dew! April 4, 2014 at 4:51am Reply

    • Victoria: A good point about the brand overall, and yes, it makes sense to see it that way. But I’m not sure if we can say that modern perfumes lack tenacity on the whole. Tenacity and longevity are the key elements in developing a fragrance, and a brand knows that if it wants to make a top seller, it better last well. On the other hand, the fashion today is for the airier, more radiant accord, more musk, less animalic, heavy notes. April 4, 2014 at 6:34am Reply

      • annemarie: Yes, I guess I was thinking of the sill age monsters of the 80s , regarded with loathing by many of today’s generation of perfume wearers. JM perfumes never offend. April 4, 2014 at 5:41pm Reply

        • Victoria: Yes, the 80s were a decade of big sillage! 🙂 April 5, 2014 at 9:43am Reply

  • The Blue Squid: Thank you for the review!  I agree with all you have to say about Jo Malone vs.  the Estee Lauder PC range.  I had chance to try some of the JMs when I was poking around on holiday a few weeks ago, as I spotted a standalone boutique.  Everything is so beautifully and elegantly presented, but so many of the perfumes are underwhelming.  Shame.  But I put some EL PC Jasmine White Moss on a card today, and it is really lovely, and quite strong.  I just put the card in the bin, and now it smells like some kind of sophisticated formal affair is going on in there.  I’ll have to try the Tuberose Gardenia too.   April 4, 2014 at 5:00am Reply

    • Victoria: Jo Malone’s boutiques are very inviting, and I can never resist stepping inside. But when it comes to spending my money, I’d rather go to the department store and look for Estee Lauder’s Private Collection or something else. It’s not just that the Private Collection perfums are more long lasting, but they also give me more pleasure. April 4, 2014 at 6:36am Reply

      • Alessandra: I agree. I am always attracted by Jo Malone counters but when I test the fragrances, in the end, there aren’t many colognes I like. I do like a few, but not many. Some I thought I would have liked on paper turned out to be a bland mega-disappointment. I do think I want to get the orange blossom, grapefruit and earl grey and cucumber colognes…. but a voice inside my head also tells me that I can find better alternatives chez guerlain aqua allegoria line, atelier cologne and as far as orange blossoms goes, santa maria novella. Mostly, they’re even cheaper alternatives. April 4, 2014 at 7:18am Reply

  • Alessandra: My favourite tuberose remains Fracas – and I love Carnal Flower but it’s impossibly expensive – , but I don’t think that Miller Harris’ one is bad. At least it’s not bad/bland on me. I actually like it… it suits me well, I even wore it, and it’s less bland than it might seem, at least on my skin. The problem is that it used to be better. I don’t know in detail but I am under the impression that, around 2010, it was reformulated. It used to be darker and deeper, before..
    I am very fascinated by tubereuse criminelle but don’t know what to do with it. It’s MENTAL, hahaha. I don’t know whether to buy it or now. It has an amazing drydown but am unsure whether I can get over the initial, hard notes… they are too hard even for me. I definitely need to test it more… too bad that I never find a tester in the shops and the only sample I got was a solid perfume sample from serge lutens boutique in Paris. Speaking of which, are solid samples to be trusted entirely? Because I adore the tubereuse solid sample and can’t remember how much it differs from the ‘liquid test’, apart from the absence of most of the hard notes.. April 4, 2014 at 7:14am Reply

    • Victoria: Do you mean Noix de Tubereuse, perhaps? Tuberosa I mention was launched just recently, in Miller Harris’s Perfumer’s Library. April 4, 2014 at 7:19am Reply

      • Alessandra: oooh I didn’t know that! Yes, I did mean noix de tubereuse hahaah 🙂
        still pretty good to my nose, except I think they changed it a bit April 4, 2014 at 10:02am Reply

  • Nancy A.: Price points on luxury items have become an enormous frustration (for me) and, in particular, when it comes to Jo Malone you are spot on! I think Estee Lauder (parent company) along with increases on JM’s fragrances have been “cleaning house” of their retail staff that I’ve become acquainted with and I was very disappointed to learn of one my acquaintances disappeared and replaced with a new management team that doesnt’ share the passion for fragrance. Number crunching time. I guess that’s why we remain true to the classics and find them worthy of our wish list. April 4, 2014 at 1:02pm Reply

    • Victoria: I didn’t realize that this was happening too, but I’m not surprised. Some of it must also be due to the retailers cutting down staff. Saks 5th Avenue in particular has been guilty of that recently. April 4, 2014 at 3:46pm Reply

  • Amer: Irrelevant but I just planted a tuberose bulb today. Hope I finally get to smell the real thing in the following months!

    I often go to a Jo Malone’s boutique and smell new releases and some old ones. There are many things this brand has going for it and yes, brand image is one of them, but still not enough to make me purchase. I think my favourite so far from the collection is Pomegranate Noir.

    PS: I like it when I get that “I just had enough” impression from your reviews every now and then. April 4, 2014 at 6:44pm Reply

    • Victoria: It’s also that with the huge choice of fragrances we have today, paying too much is just unnecessary. Of course, there is no argument that everyone has different interpretations of value. For some people, spending time spent shopping around for a better deal may not be worthwhile. For others, the scents really hit the spot and nothing else will do. And for another lucky group, the budget is not an issue.

      Pomegranate Noir is at the top of my list of JM favorites. It wears really well and has many interesting twists. Some of their colognes like Lime, Basil & Mandarin are also very good.

      And good luck with your tuberose! It’s such a rewarding plant to grow, because the aroma of even one plant fills the whole garden. April 5, 2014 at 9:47am Reply

  • Annabel Farrell: Next time I’m in London – July – I’m thinking of paying a visit to the Jo Loves shop in Belgravia to see what Jo Malone’s current range of scents is like. Would be interested to hear if anyone has been there, bought some, and what they thought. I loved Jo Malone in her very early days in her tiny shop in Walton Street Knightsbridge – but it all got a bit too large. April 7, 2014 at 12:15am Reply

    • Victoria: I think that you’ll find it all much changed, but the boutique itself is very nice. It’s large, full of spaces for testing and the service is pleasant. I bought only a small candle for a friend, and I received many samples to try. April 7, 2014 at 11:58am Reply

  • scentfromabove: I am a huge fan of the Jo Malone line. “Nectarine Blossom and Honey” have been my signature fragrance for years. Although the Intense line doesn’t always agree with my body chemistry, I have worn most of their scents. Jo Malone mixes well with me and I always get so many compliments when I wear any of the scents. Some of my favorites are the Nectarine, Blackberry & Bay, Peony Blush. Although, I am curious of the Tuberose, I won’t get it because I wear Lauder’s Tuberose Gardenia. April 7, 2014 at 5:54pm Reply

    • Victoria: You might like Tuberose Angelica, if you’re looking for something lighter than Tuberose Gardenia. Since Jo Malone works so well for you, it’s worth sampling. April 8, 2014 at 8:13am Reply

  • Michael: I stopped by one of the Jo Malone boutiques last Saturday and got cajoled into having a complimentary hand and arm massage. The sales assistant applied Lime Basil & Mandarin body crème before spritzing Tuberose Angelica Cologne Intense and the combination was actually quite interesting, if a bit unexpected. Unfortunately, like most other Jo Malone fragrances, I could only smell the former after an hour.

    I have been invited to the launch of their new fragrance, Silk Blossom, next month, so I will report on that if I make it to the event. Tuberose Angelica will be launched in the UK the following month. April 14, 2014 at 7:30pm Reply

  • casey23: Jo Malone always attracted me with its simply yet elegant style (and also thanks to British bloggers). First time I went there, even though my fav one was Nectarine Blossom & Honey, I bought small sized Vintage Gardenia and Wild Bluebell.. The price was somehow normal (according to Turkey anyway, here every other perfume brands are pricey – i mean Dolce Gabbana the one desire was around $150 dollars)… But since then, I didn’t want to give that much money for a “cologne” even though they are much muuuuch better than regular perfumes (D&G i’m still looking at you!).
    Then I found the distributor’s store were the prices were really (30 ml is $ 37 and 100 ml is $83) affordable so I satisfied my need (nectarine + orange blossom :)). July 18, 2014 at 1:51am Reply

    • casey23: Oh sorry I forgot to mention that, they took Vintage Gardenia out of their range but this one smells exactly like VG (or at least on me!). July 18, 2014 at 1:52am Reply

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