4 stars: 355 posts

4 stars means “very good,” a fragrance with enough character to be memorable, and enough tenacity and diffusion to be noticed. It may either lack that ineffable “spark” that makes a perfume truly outstanding for me or else it may simply need more time on the market to determine its staying power.

Elizabeth Arden Green Tea : Perfume Review

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Andy discovers how refreshing and uplifting Elizabeth Arden’s Green Tea can be.

Potent is the last word I’d associate with Elizabeth Arden’s Green Tea, yet when I first tried it, it felt like a jolt of something refreshing and uplifting. It was very early in my fragrance journey, when I wanted to build a small fragrance wardrobe without spending too much. I can remember picking up a bottle of Green Tea for $10 during a sweltering May heat wave, ravenously ripping the packaging open in my overheated car, and spraying myself liberally. To this day, I still reach for Green Tea whenever I need some immediate relief from the heat, or for no reason at all, because it is both refreshingly simple and pleasantly sparkling.

green tea

Elizabeth Arden launched Green Tea in 1999, following dozens of other fragrances (like Tommy Girl and Ck One) in the trendsetting footsteps of Bulgari’s Eau Parfumée au Thé Vert. But in comparison to Thé Vert’s nuanced, misty interpretation of green tea, Elizabeth Arden’s Green Tea, composed by Francis Kurkdjian, smells somewhat one-dimensional. As a result, Green Tea can be considered neither revolutionary nor particularly outstanding in composition, but instead it seems to me a study in technical expertise, of making the most out of a formula that is composed of relatively few ingredients while still smelling complete.

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Ann Gerard Rose Cut : Perfume Review

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Does the world need another rose perfume? I’ve posed myself that question on many occasions, as the variety of roses keeps increasing, but I invariably end up saying, yes. Jasmine, orange blossom and tuberose, the so-called white flowers, may seduce me, but rose makes me happy. Light and shimmery or dark and velvety, this blossom in the perfume bottle is my gateway to fantasy. Enter the new rose to tempt me, Ann Gérard Rose Cut.

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A jeweler based in Paris, Ann Gérard has already three perfumes to her name, Cuir de NacrePerle de Mousse, and Ciel d’Opale. All three were created by Bertrand Duchaufour, the perfumer whose name graces many niche offerings. Rose Cut is also his composition, and in creating it, he and Gérard were inspired by a diamond-cutting technique which gives stones a special radiance.

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Cartier La Panthere : Perfume Review

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Why did “the feral floral,” a tag line used by Cartier to describe its perfume, La Panthère, catch my attention? It’s not that I’m all that keen on the smell of unwashed animals; otherwise, the camel leather belt I bought for my husband in India (now banished to the outside closet) would have satisfied that craving and more. Cartier’s perfumery, on the other hand, is in the hands of talented Mathilde Laurent, and if anyone could make feral smell good, it would be her.

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La Panthère was the nickname of Jeanne Toussaint, the flamboyant artistic director of Cartier jewelry from 1933 to 1968, who was responsible for some of the most dramatic examples of Cartier’s art. Named after this tremendous character, the perfume couldn’t be just another well-behaved floral, and Laurent decided on a composition based on contrasts: moss and leather; gardenias and patchouli.

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Carolina Herrera by Carolina Herrera : Perfume Review

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Elisa discovers another underrated gem and white floral beauty in Carolina Herrera’s 1988 perfume. But don’t say that you haven’t been warned about its big sillage and quintessential 80s character.

My mother has never worn perfume, so as a young girl I had to look elsewhere for scented role models. One was my grandmother, who introduced me to the wonders of White Linen. Another was my best friend’s mother, a beautiful, petite brunette who always entered the room in a cloud of womanly sillage. Her weapons of choice – I remember seeing the bottles on her vanity – were the original Escada and Carolina Herrera.

carolina herrera

They both seemed impossibly glamorous and “grown up” from that vantage point. But in my first year of full-on, post-rabbit-hole perfume mania, I remember realizing with a jolt that, as an adult woman myself now, I am free to drown myself in Carolina Herrera if I choose to. Not having smelled it in years if not decades, I picked up a small bottle of the EDP at a discount store (in the classic polka-dot box). I got it home, sprayed it on, and smiled in recognition: it hadn’t changed.

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Chanel Beige and Jersey Extrait de Parfum : Perfume Reviews

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Of the three new extraits de parfum in Chanel’s Les Exclusifs collection, 1932 seemed most promising, but it turned out that Beige and Jersey held more surprises. As I mentioned in my review of 1932, if you didn’t like the Eau de Toilette, the parfum isn’t going to change your mind, but in the case of Beige and Jersey, the richness, new accents and nuances might make a positive difference for those who were ambivalent about the original versions.

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Beige

I already enjoyed Beige for its understated elegance, and while I proclaim my undying love for Coromandel and Cuir de Russie, I wear this delicate white floral far more often. It certainly won’t turn heads the way Coromandel does or make you time travel to the Roaring Twenties like Cuir de Russie, but if you need a well-made fragrance that feels like a comfortable silk slip, Beige is perfect.

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