Recommend Me a Perfume : January 2016

We have our “Recommend Me a Perfume” thread today. You can use this space to ask any questions about perfume, including fragrance recommendations.


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 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

7 Mimosas and Carmen

The scene: Brussels, an early evening cast in grey light. A woman walking slowly down the street. Behind a window covered with condensation she sees It. If it were a French New Wave film, the woman would have met the love of her life with whom she’d spend the next hour and a half exchanging meaningful glances and an occasional quote from a postmodern philosopher. But being my life, this is an evening when I find mimosa.

mimosa and tea

No flowers make me lose myself the way these fluffy yellow pompoms do. I’m not the only one–a heavily pregnant friend once traveled from Brooklyn all the way to Manhattan just because she heard that one florist shop on the Upper West Side might have received a shipment of mimosas. When I walk home, my arms filled with the bouquets, even the darkening light seems to radiate the same lemon yellow color.

Continue reading →

10 Perfumes for Cheating Winter

There is no reason to keep citrus, white florals and other effervescent blends only for the summer month. As Elisa explains, they’re as perfect for the winter as they are year-round.

I’ve written the top 10 list for the past three winters, and both last year and the year before, I focused on traditionally seasonal perfumes – rich orientals and boozy ambers and gourmands. It’s true that in winter, I reach for my heavier perfumes about 5 days out of 7. But at least once or twice a week, I’ll get a craving for something that’s not very wintery at all, and on “cheat days” my out-of-season perfumes feel like a special treat by contrast to the usual fare.

bird cherry

Below are ten of my favorite perfumes to wear when I feel like cheating on winter.

Clarins Par Amour Toujours – We usually associate citrus with summer, but December is actually peak grapefruit season! Par Amour Toujours looks cute and harmless in the bottle, and there is some pink rose in there, but more pronounced is the invigorating grapefruit, bolstered by a blackcurrant note so green it’s almost piney.

Pinrose Treehouse Royal – There’s nothing like blackcurrant to cut through the fog of winter. Its pungent sweetness serves as a kind of palate cleanser after too many days of heavy, smoky orientals. Treehouse Royal is a great find – similar to Byredo Pulp, but much more affordable, it’s a bright mix of currant and fig, with a clean drydown like musky soap. Continue reading →

Most Versatile Perfumes : Poll

A few years ago I asked your opinion on the most versatile perfumes in your collections, or what fragrances you reached for when you couldn’t decide what to wear. My reader Hamamelis asked if I could run the poll again, and here it is.


Please share fragrances you think are the most versatile. I will update this post with your top 5 selections. My own answers will be in the comments.

Audrey Hepburn: An out take from the photo shoot for the cover of the April 19, 1954 international issue of Life magazine. Photo by Mark Shaw. Please see Mark Shaw Photo Archives for more of his elegant photography.

Diorissimo Doctors Without Borders Fundraiser

Thank you very much to everyone who participated in our Doctors Without Borders fundraiser. Together we’ve raised $7,150. Thank you for your generosity and thoughtfulness. Also, a big thank you to Limegreen, Bregje, Rebecca and Reg for the extra prizes they’ve contributed.


To select the winners, I assigned each participant a number and then made a selection via a random number generator in the following order:

Diorissimo–update on 1/29: re-drawing the winner, because the first winner never responded and my emails bounced back. So, the new winner is Farrah.

Diptyque Volutes (Rebecca’s prize, barely used bottle)–the winner is Therese

Chanel No 5 parfum (Limegreen’s prize, barely used bottle)–the winner is Jane

Serge Lutens La Fille de Berlin–the winner is Kay

Chanel Coco 50ml (Bregje’s prize, 95% full)–the winner is Dana

Since Reg is based in the UK and couldn’t mail her bottle outside of the country due to the regulations, I randomly selected a winner for Reg’s prize out of the UK participants.

Chanel Cristalle (Reg’s prize, vintage bottle, used)–the winner is Lucy

Added 1/22/2016: we also had an offer of a samples package from my reader Linda. I randomly selected a fundraiser participant, and the winner is Diana.

Congratulations! I will get in touch with you this week.

Our standard contest reminder: I reserve a right to select another person if the original winner doesn’t respond within 7 days.

From the Archives

Latest Comments

  • Surbhi in Penhaligon’s Ostara : Fragrance Review: Not sure if this is the right post for this comment. If not please let me know and I will correct it next time. I usually spray perfume with bottle… February 6, 2016 at 2:52pm

  • limegreen in Paper Passion: I love that paper mash opening! Thanks for explaining the vanillin “production” :) February 6, 2016 at 2:32pm

  • girasole in Paper Passion: Thank you for a lovely post on another of my passions – I love paper and paper craft (although I still can’t bring myself to ‘repurpose’ books, despite the current… February 6, 2016 at 12:46pm

  • girasole in Paper Passion: I’ve also noticed this about some iris scents – although others seems to smell inky to me. I’m sure it’s just me, but L’Artisan’s Jour de Fete smells a little… February 6, 2016 at 12:41pm

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