Recommend Me a Perfume

Our bi-weekly “Recommend Me a Perfume” returns today. Let’s play!

Please post your requests 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. Then check the thread to see if there are other requests you can answer.

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

Next week I will be away for a few days, with limited internet access. Suzanna and I will see you here on Thursday.

Photography by Bois de Jasmin, fall still life.



  • rose: I’d love to hear any recommendations from folks here, you all seem pretty expert to me – I’d like to wear something more sexy and sensual and I love the idea of Fracas or Carnal Flower but they’d be too much for me.

    I normally wear quite natural greenish perfumes (these have included Channel 19, Bulgari Thè Vert and recently Annik Goutal’s Ninfeo Mio. I’ve also enjoyed Bulgari Black and Donna Karan’s Cashmere Mist (for their close to the skin comfort smell). My recent favourite is Dyptych’s Philosykos but it has a slight chemically smell that makes it not perfect. Love the fig note though.

    What I want is something more sexy and sensual, but I definitely wouldn’t suit something too heavy or old fashioned.

    I also loathe ‘clean’ smelling scents. I already smell very clean as I have dry, cool, close pored skin and perfumes with linen freshness or Lily of the Valley fragrance will just make me smell sanitised! On the other hand, heavy orientals on me are like oil on water – it just doesn’t mix.

    I have dark hair, pale skin and green eyes, I like simple elegant clothes in natural fabrics. Any recommendations based on all this info would be great! November 9, 2012 at 7:46am Reply

    • Cybele: Estee Lauder Tuberose Gardenia is beautiful, clean and sexy and easier to wear than Carnal Flower or Fracas! But still try Carnal Flower applied lightly, it is actually quite a green scent too. My other suggestion for you is the Narcisso Rodriguez line- try For Her EDT in the black bottle (I find the pink bottle EDP a little chemical smelling) and For Her Musc (iridiscent bottle). For non-heavy, blonde-ambery skin scents: Estee Lauder Sensous Nude, Santal Massoia by Hermessence, Prada L’Eau Ambree November 9, 2012 at 8:20am Reply

      • Cybele: and you must try Baise Vole by Cartier! November 9, 2012 at 8:23am Reply

      • Rowanhill: I also had the Narciso Rodriguez EdT in mind, and would same the same about Fracas as you said of Carnal Flower, dosage is the key and even Fracas behaves. 🙂

        Chanel 19, Thé Vert and Ninfeo Mio are also some of my favourites and indeed sometimes something rounder, warmer and softer is needed. Serge Lutens Daim Blond and Bottega Veneta also come to mind as softer options. November 11, 2012 at 7:46am Reply

    • rosarita: You might like Hermes Un Jardin en Mediterranée. It’s a woody fig scent that has a bit of green, at least to my nose, and it has a warm depth. I’m not a white floral person, so someone else will need to rec a Fracas type scent. 🙂 November 9, 2012 at 8:22am Reply

      • Anna Minis: If you like the tuberose in Carnal Flower, Juicy Couture could be nice for you. It has also a tuberose note, but more sparkling and easy to wear. And, before it is too late: try No.5 Eau Première (Chanel). And Dior Homme is a very elegant irisperfume, gives that cool, clear feeling. November 9, 2012 at 8:29am Reply

        • Anna Minis: With your complexion and style, a soft grey iris perfume could be very elegant. Think of Dior Homme, La Pausa (Chanel), or perhaps most of all Après L’Ondée (Guerlain).Or Hiris (Hermès). November 9, 2012 at 10:03am Reply

          • Annie: Apres L’Ondee might be just the ticket! November 9, 2012 at 11:24am Reply

      • Elena: We seem to be on the same page of perfumes we like, and I also love Mediterranee. I find it very summery, though (not that it’s a bad thing). November 9, 2012 at 3:36pm Reply

    • Austenfan: The original Bvlgari Pour Femme
      I second the recommendation of PC Tuberose Gardenia
      Maître Parfumeur et Gantier: Jardin Blanc
      Maybe Goutal Songes ( try the EDT first), or Un Matin d’Orage
      Nicolaï: Number One, Juste un Rêve, Le Temps d’une Fête
      L’Artisan Parfumeur: Dzing! November 9, 2012 at 9:21am Reply

    • Lucia: Hello rose, I also have dark hair, pale skin and green eyes, and wear simple elegant clothes.. and usually wear Chanel 19 to work! I hate laundry scents too. We are so alike. For a more sexy sensual fragrance I want to recommend Amouage Dia EDP, which has many layers that unfold beautifully, close to the skin with some sillage, and which is perfect for office or daytime wear. This perfume is not green; it’s warm, sensual, and can seem very sexy in contrast to No. 19 — without going overboard. I also recommend Chanel Allure EDP, another scent that is warm and sexy but can also be worn to the office. These are the two fragrances I carry in my handbag, out of the 100 or so I own. November 9, 2012 at 9:30am Reply

      • Euphrosyne: I am still waiting to sample the Amouage line (sounds right up my alley, but haven’t gotten to them yet) but can heartily second Chanel Allure EDP. It is my default perfume and can go from the office to an evening out. November 9, 2012 at 5:39pm Reply

    • Az: I’d try wearing carnal flower in the body butter. It is strong for a lotion but not the powerhouse of the perfume.

      Maybe infusion d’iris by prada although that’s sexy in an understated way. Or gucci envy if you can get it. 🙂 November 9, 2012 at 11:01am Reply

      • Susie: Tuesday Morning has a clearance price on Prada Infusion d’Iris. 13.5oz with funnel and smaller bottle included for $74.99. They say it’s regularly $220. I can’t vouch for that, but thought I’d let you know if you’re going to get it. 🙂 Hope this helps! November 9, 2012 at 12:49pm Reply

    • Geneviève: If you want greenish scent but not too clean, I would go with Chance Eau Fraîche. I love it’s citruses notes and it’s freshness. There is also hyacynth notes and jasmin notes that «cut» the cleanish smell of the citruses, I think. I receive a lot of compliments when I wear it. Just be careful, because it’s an eau fraîche, it doesn’t last long (3 hours), but if you buy the hydratant veil that goes with it, your perfume can last longer. November 9, 2012 at 11:12am Reply

    • Jane: I love green perfumes too! The newer Diptyque eau de parfums are richer and warmer than their eau de toilettes. I adore the warm green tuberose in Diptyque Do Son Eau de Parfum, a beautiful warm floral that wears beautifully in cooler weather. Have you worn L’Artisan Parfumeur Premier Figuier Extreme (not the regular)? It has creamy green fig that is gorgeous. If you want to step into something woodsy and warm, I can see you in L’Artisan Parfumeur Timbuktu. If you feel like trying some older scents, I think you would adore Dior Diorella (new version) and Yves St Laurent “Y”, for warm greens… November 9, 2012 at 11:17am Reply

    • Ann-Sofie: Private Collection/Estee Lauder. It is green but not clean (oh, a rhyme, LOL). It is very sensual, in the true sense – you can almost touch the greeneries of PC once sprayed on skin. November 9, 2012 at 11:25am Reply

    • George: As you want something warm and sensual, but don’t like orientals, I would probably recommend a number of ‘masculine’ scents that border on the oriental, but which don’t have that overdose of sweetness- Dior Homme or its extreme flanker, Fahrenheit Absolu and Fahrenheit 32 (a very different fragrance to the other Fahrenheits). I’m not sponsored by Dior: they just have a number of perfumes that fall in to this category. Another option would be Habit Rouge. I would also recommend trying their vetiver scents based on your tastes, but to my mind, they (and most green fragrances) don’t fall in to the sexy and sensual side of things (which to me is orientals). November 9, 2012 at 12:14pm Reply

    • Cymbaline: Your description of yourself and your perfume preferences sound so much like me that I feel my recommendations might actually be helpful!

      I read about perfumer Juan Perez on someone’s blog and ordered samples recently. He is located in Puerto Rico and sells through the online site “Etsy” under the company name of Exotic Island Aromas. He offers 3 1ml vials for $15.00 or 3 5ml bottles for sampling purposes and of course larger bottles are available, too.

      I’ve fallen in love with Flor Azteca (Tuberose), Magnolio de Verano (Magnolia) and Gardenia Exuberante so you might give those a try first.

      Juan’s customer service is great! November 9, 2012 at 12:51pm Reply

      • Jan Last: I agree completely with this statement. I purchased the samples and he sent me a personal thank-you! I will be in Puerto Rico over the Christmas holidays. He goes to local art and other festivals in Puerto Rico and I’ll try to make it to one to thank him personally for creating such lovely wearable art. November 9, 2012 at 2:50pm Reply

    • Sassa: I have dark hair, fair skin and green eyes also, wear all natural fabrics, and love most of the scents that you mentioned!
      I’m embarrassed to say that I’m never sure what sexy means as it pertains to perfume. If you mean musky, then Narcisso Rodriquez for Her is the bomb!
      If you mean soft, supple and cuddly, then Bottega Veneta would be great.
      Also, can I suggest that you try Chanel Bel Respiro for a casual scent? Love the green and the leather in that one!
      One more suggestion: Philosykos layered with Dzing! Terrific combination (although the Philosykos does not last for more than an hour or so!) November 9, 2012 at 2:47pm Reply

      • Victoria: Wow, that sounds like a great layering combination. I want to try it myself. November 9, 2012 at 2:52pm Reply

    • Kristen: For a lovely green but creamy fig, I’d recommend Jardin de Kerylos by Parfumerie Generale. November 9, 2012 at 3:54pm Reply

    • Safran: Hello Rose,

      I’d like to recommend Mona di Orio’s Tubereuse. It is a green, slightly creamy Tuberose scent, that can be worn anytime, daytime and night. It has a certain cleanliness too. I love Carnal Flower too, but this would be my choice for an easily wearable Tuberose scent.

      Safran November 9, 2012 at 4:00pm Reply

    • ana: I think Ormonde Woman would be lovely on you. It’s woodsy, warm, delicately sweet and powdery due to violet note, also slightly green in a very mysterious way. It’s incredible. It was love at first sniff for me and a very successful blind buy November 9, 2012 at 4:37pm Reply

    • Nina Z: Annick Goutal Heure Exquise is similar to Chanel 19 but is warmer and more sensual. Very beautiful. Also, try Chanel No. 22, creamy white flowers are tempered with incense. November 9, 2012 at 8:04pm Reply

    • Daisy: If you like fig notes, I would recommend Bois de Paradis from Parfums DelRae. I met the perfumer a few months ago and she told me that a friend of hers was wearing Bois de Paradis at a restaurant and suddenly was surrounded by a crowd of very hot men.

      Turns out the Italian National Soccer Team was drawn to her because of her perfume!

      Now if that is an endorsement for it’s sexy, sensualness, I don’t know what is 🙂 November 9, 2012 at 8:53pm Reply

      • Annikky: Daisy, do you work in sales, by any chance:)? I definitely need to get that one now and hang around football fields. November 10, 2012 at 6:06am Reply

        • Austenfan: Do try Bois de Paradis! It is gorgeous. November 10, 2012 at 9:41am Reply

        • Daisy: Hehe, Anniky! Don’t work in sales 🙂 Am just a perfume enabler! November 10, 2012 at 8:54pm Reply

          • Annikky: You most ceratinly are, I have witnessed your supreme skills both here and on NST. I just wondered if you also make huge sums of money out of this frightening/wonderful understanding of people’s innermost desires:) November 11, 2012 at 6:21am Reply

            • Daisy: I wish! But I think we’ve got a lot of great perfume enablers here 🙂 Maybe we should consolidate our powers of perfume persuasion and take over 🙂 November 12, 2012 at 2:27pm Reply

    • RVB: De Bachmakov by The Different Company is a very unique green scent.It’s not a clean green but supposed to invoke the first green stalks pushing through snow in the Russian forest.It has a unique prominent note of clary sage and gives the impression of being in a magic forest.It seems like it would match your coloring.Try Nuit Etoillee by Annick Goutal also,a rich sappy perfume with a hint of mint and and a green incense like airy feel November 10, 2012 at 12:56am Reply

    • Mer: I am not at all knowledgeable when it comes to perfume, and I have not tried any of the perfumes you mention (which now I should!), but I feel compelled to comment since we have very similar complexion and the same type of skin (so sad about the lily of the valley!).

      I would recommend Annick Goutal Mon Parfum Cheri, par Camille. It doesn’t have fig, but plum, the only two fruits I really like on my skin, aside from citrus. I don’t know if it is sexy, but it is certainly sensual, comforting and enveloping. Smoky, definitely not “clean” 🙂 November 10, 2012 at 6:06am Reply

    • Leonie: Hi Rose,
      In my mind two perfect choices for you would be Versace Blonde and Rochas Absolu Intense (in a red bottle), Blonde because I think it’s a more wearable cousin of Fracas and Rochas AI because of the fig notes and, tuberose and very warm lovely base. It is listed as floral oriental but it is not heavy. Unfortunately, those are both discontinued, but can be found at online retailers. November 10, 2012 at 6:30am Reply

  • Geneviève: Hello perfume lovers! What a great idea you had Victoria! I was wondering if you all could help me! I’m looking for a new perfume too and I like powdery scents, rose, jasmine, violet, incense, citrus, corriander and spicies in general
    I’m 25 and I’m looking for a feminine scent, not girly. I’m a girly naive girl, but I like my perfume to show my deeper personality. To me it’s like a balance.
    There is one thing that I hate, it’s anis.
    I wear : L’interdit (2007 version), Shalimar, Chance eau fraîche, J’adore, Chanel no.19 poudré.
    Thank you all ! November 9, 2012 at 7:47am Reply

    • Anna Minis: Ombre Rose (Brosseau) perhaps? November 9, 2012 at 8:34am Reply

      • Geneviève: Thank you, I’ll try it ! November 9, 2012 at 11:14am Reply

    • Cybele: Love by Chloe November 9, 2012 at 8:47am Reply

      • Geneviève: Thank you for the reply. I like it, but not as much as I would pay for it… There is something missing in that fragrance for me… I don’t know what November 9, 2012 at 11:15am Reply

      • maja: Second this. November 9, 2012 at 12:48pm Reply

    • Allison: Hi, I’d recommend Farnesiana by Caron, and also Or Des Indes by Maitre Parfumeur et Gantier. November 9, 2012 at 9:16am Reply

      • Geneviève: Thank you! I definitively have to smell Caron’s perfume ! Can’t wait! Your suggestions are interesting me November 9, 2012 at 11:16am Reply

    • Lucia: Powdery scents are so gorgeous aren’t they? Bois d’Iris by The Perfume Company will knock your socks off it’s so stunning and different! It’s – powdery, warm, and with flowers and woods. Very pretty. Another drop dead gorgeous scent, especially for fall and winter, is Caron Parfum Sacre, which goes on with a burst of flowers and then warms up with incense and vanilla – really great to cozy up with this one. Finally, probably THE perfect perfume for you is Creed Fleurissimo, which is a very refined English bouquet in a bottle, and includes Bergamot, Tuberose, Bulgarian Rose, Violet, Florentine Iris, and Ambergris. Fleurissimo smells like a garden, minus the dirt, (lol), and of all things, becomes a sort of skin scent after awhile. You will love it. November 9, 2012 at 9:41am Reply

      • Geneviève: Wow! Thank you! I must say that I never smelled most of the perfumes you recommend, so it’s a great start for me! I’m really glad! Thank you! November 9, 2012 at 11:14am Reply

    • Dionne: For powdery/violet that is feminine, try Balenciaga’s Paris, it’s quite lovely. I’ll second the Parfum Sacre for rose and incense, it’s in my top ten. Also try Sonoma Scent Studio’s Vintage Rose for a similar vein (actually, try all her rose and violet scents, they’re stunning) and Safran Troublant hits that rose/spice spot very well in the Venn diagram of perfumery. November 9, 2012 at 11:35am Reply

      • Geneviève: Thank you! I never tried it 🙂 November 12, 2012 at 5:11pm Reply

    • Elisa: My favorite powdery scent is Flower by Kenzo. November 9, 2012 at 1:09pm Reply

    • RVB: Try Une Rose Chypree by Andy Tauer-it contains most of the notes you’ve listed.It starts with a burst of citrus and spices proceeds to weave in a beautiful rose note then melts into a beautiful forest chypre drydown-truly mesmerizing.Also try 1889-Moulin Rouge by Histories de Parfums.It’s a powdery rose violet perfume replicating the smell of the makeup rooms of turn of the century Moulin Rouge.In a similar vein Frederic Malle’s Lipstick Rose would be worth a try- a nice powdery violet rose November 10, 2012 at 1:04am Reply

    • solanace: Hi,

      I think you should try Patricia de Nicolai Vanille Tonka. It is not overly sweet or vanillic, but has a nice incense note and a citrousy facet that balances its mood. Also, if you like incense (and roses!), maybe you should play with the Amouage line. These are costly, but I think they are actually worth their indecent prices, and the best is that they are totally compatible with the idea of decants, since they have great sillage and longevity. (I’ve got some 0.5 ml samples that I have used several times, they are that rich and persistent!) Also, since we are here, try the Deserts collection by Guerlain, especilly the rose and the myrrh ones.
      Good luck! November 10, 2012 at 3:18am Reply

  • forget-me-not: Could you please advise me where I can get glass vials, especially ones with a spray top? Also, how do you make decants? Do you use special pippets and where can I get them then?
    Many thanks! November 9, 2012 at 7:48am Reply

    • Gvillecreative: A lot of people use Accessories for Fragrance, who is on ebay, for vials and bottles. I’ve used them before (but not recently) and never had problems. They also sell some great metal funnels (you can reuse metal funnels if cleaned properly, but not plastic ones).

      🙂 November 9, 2012 at 10:07am Reply

    • Emily: You can get small atomizers and pipettes for decanting at Surrender to Chance in small quantities — larger quantities of pipettes can be ordered through scientific suppliers. You can get atomizers elsewhere, but I’m still trying to source them cheaper myself! November 9, 2012 at 11:31am Reply

      • Daisy: I second Surrender to Chance. They have nice 2ml glass atomizers with chrome caps! You could probably get them for less expensive elsewhere, I’m just not sure where I would store the quantity that a minimum order would require . . . November 9, 2012 at 8:56pm Reply

        • hajusuuri: I’ve bought the 2mLs glass spray vials with metal caps from STC but sadly but I found them to be of so-so quality. Most of the metal caps are too loose and the screw tops don’t always screw tightly. November 9, 2012 at 10:21pm Reply

  • Layla: I just stated to get in to perfumes, and I’m looking for a few winter perfumes this year.. I have no idea where to start.

    I’m 23 and I have been loving Pink (Fresh and Clean) by Victoria secret , Japanese cherry blossom and cherry blossom by bath and body works,Chance by Chanel … I have smelt acqua di gioia by Giorgio Armani and I do love that for summer ( summer 2013 )….

    The flowers that I love jasmine, white lily
    I do like lemon ( fresh scent) and one scent that is hard to capture is beach, clean…

    Stores near me are Macy’s, and I don’t mind shopping online… thank you again November 9, 2012 at 7:50am Reply

    • Victoria: I recommend for you to sample Marc Jacobs for Her and Juicy Couture. For a fresh, bright lily, you might like to try LILY by Stella MacCartney. November 9, 2012 at 9:30am Reply

    • Lucia: Beach — yeah it’s very hard to capture the scent of a beach without making an out-and-out suntan lotion. However, there is one that has become famous for being exactly the fragrance of the beach! It’s called Beach EDP and it’s by Bobbi Brown. November 9, 2012 at 9:44am Reply

    • Raluca: I recommend D&G Light Blue and Bronze Goddess(Estee Lauder). I also suggest that you smell and try a lot of fragrances before you buy. Your taste may also change over time. It would be great if you could get to a Saks store just so you can try different fragrances. Estee Lauder has excellent perfumes so stop by the counter and try them. You don’t need to buy but it’s very useful to smelll different perfumes, at least that has been my experience. Enjoy! 🙂 November 9, 2012 at 9:43pm Reply

      • solanace: Seconding Ralucas’s suggestion. You could also order some sample sets online, based on ingredients or perfumers, in order to have some fun at home before commiting to a full bottle. November 10, 2012 at 3:22am Reply

    • D: For a lily that is a good deep winter scent, try Donna Karan Gold. It is heavily discounted on line. November 10, 2012 at 1:08pm Reply

  • Gvillecreative: Oh no, perfumies!

    I’ve fallen HARD for Amouage Beloved. I particularly love the dry down (it smells so ~human~) and quality but am avoiding it because of the price.

    Can anyone recommend something SUPER similar? Or should I just sell a kidney and be done with it? November 9, 2012 at 9:15am Reply

    • Victoria: Do you find that other aldehydic florals like Arpege or Rive Gauche hit the spot for you? I confess that I tried Beloved briefly and it reminded me of vintage perfumes like Bal a Versailles. Even No5 or No22 in the parfum version would be close, although Beloved is sweeter and warmer in the dry down. November 9, 2012 at 9:28am Reply

      • Gvillecreative: I’m ashamed to admit that I haven’t tried Rive Gauche. I don’t think of myself as an aldehyde lover, but clearly I must be to love Beloved so much. Plus, Cuir de Russie is my all time fave, and it has lots of aldehydes.

        It’s funny, because just the other day, I was thinking that it might be good to get Chanel Sensual Elixir to layer with other fragrances, to give them a human glow. Plus, that Elixir has such a great package– who wouldn’t love to open the stopper and apply to skin?

        I think that the slighty sweet, musky drydown + the adehydes + warm round rose is what I love best about Beloved. Maybe I can recreate it by layering…

        Maybe that’s what I should do. November 9, 2012 at 10:04am Reply

        • Victoria: You definitely have a taste for aldehydes if you love Cuir de Russie! Have you tried No 5 Eau Premiere? You might like it.

          Since they are easy to find, give Jean Patou 1000, Hermes Caleche and maybe even Jean Patou Joy a try. They don’t smell exactly like Beloved, but they have a similarly grand aura.

          Ormonde Jayne Woman is another oriental with a twist, worth sampling. November 9, 2012 at 10:14am Reply

          • Gvillecreative: I like Eau Premiere and Woman a lot, actually. those are great frags. November 9, 2012 at 10:18am Reply

    • solanace: I have a problem with Amouage. I have avoided selling a kidney so far living with decants… November 10, 2012 at 3:23am Reply

      • Gvillecreative: I’m lucky in that this is the first Amouage that I *had* to have. I read on Nathan Branch’s site that they go off quickly because of the high amount of EO in each one… which really deters me. Who wants to see that much juice go bad?

        If I could buy a 30ml, I certainly would. I’ve drained my sample faster than any other EVER! But this one only comes in a 100ml.

        If anyone gets their hands on a partial bottle that they want to sell, hit me up on mua! November 10, 2012 at 8:59am Reply

  • Bettye: Hello everyone! Please help me choose a fall/winter frag, something with warm, luxuriously cashmere-y sensuousness and some darkness. Nothing too sweet or girly-girl 🙂 I don’t particularly care for leather notes, but just about anything else is fair game. Ideas? November 9, 2012 at 9:41am Reply

    • Lucia: Have you tried Black Cashmere by Donna Karan? November 9, 2012 at 9:47am Reply

      • Bettye: Thank you, Lucia. Don’t know Blk Cashmere but will check it out. November 9, 2012 at 9:50am Reply

    • Anne Sheffield: I would recommend you with Habit Rouge by Guerlain, which is a male fragrance, but SOOO warm! I am also at the moment enjoying ambre des merveilles by Hermes, which is a little sweeter. You could also try parfum initial by guerlain. It is more feminine, but I live the last note of burnt vanilla. Hummmmmm!!!! Cosy warm after all this, and somehow craving warm chocolate cookies…. November 9, 2012 at 9:51am Reply

      • Nikki: I second Habit Rouge by Guerlain, great winter fragrance~! November 9, 2012 at 10:48am Reply

    • Gvillecreative: How heavy do you like your frags and what are your current HGs? November 9, 2012 at 10:05am Reply

    • Emily: My current cashmere-sweater-effect scents (from lightest to snuggliest) are:
      – Kelly Caleche (which I don’t find to be very leathery but some pickup the “expensive handbag” note more than I do)
      – Chanel Beige (which some find boring but I find subtle and cozy)
      – Arquiste Anima Dulcis (chocolate and spice, but dry and not sweet)
      – Lutens Jeau de Peau (another unsweet gourmand that I wear so often in fall/winter my grad students identify it as “my” smell)
      – Lutens Chypre Rouge (the infamous Turin “immortelle disaster,” so it might be too sweet for you, but on me it smells like walking into a great coffeehouse November 9, 2012 at 11:35am Reply

    • Jan Last: How about 1000 Flowers Reglisse Noir? It starts out peppery, then hangs on to every skin cell with a soft touch of licorise. I am about to order a 5 gallon bucket of it! It’s a fall scent, but maybe not a winter scent. November 9, 2012 at 2:54pm Reply

      • ojaddicte: If you are thinking of ordering it, the big bottle has been on sale for some time on the 1000 Flowers website. I just got it and it is beautiful! November 9, 2012 at 5:57pm Reply

    • Cybele: Coromandel November 9, 2012 at 3:37pm Reply

    • Nina Z: I second Coromandel. Also highly recommend Ormonde Jayne Tolu, very sensuous but not cloying amber. November 9, 2012 at 8:07pm Reply

    • Raluca: I suggest trying Kenzo Amour and Opium. November 9, 2012 at 9:46pm Reply

    • RVB: Chambre Noire by Olfactive Studio is a warm dark scent with notes of jasmine papyrus violet incense and prune and base notes of sandalwood patchouli musk and leather.It’s not really a leather scent ,more of a dark plum and incense.If you dare 1740 by Histories de Parfums is an even intense version with additional notes of davana and tobacco-a truly dark exotic scent.Finally Noir de Noir by Tom Ford is a beautiful dark chocolate and rose scent-if I could describe it in a color it would be dark purple-similar to Anima Dulcis but less animalic and more floral.I also find dark roses to be great winter perfumes-some of my favorites are Une Rose and Portrait of a lady by Frederic Malle-Incense Rose by Andy Tauer-Rose 31 by Le Labo-and Paestum Rose by Eau de Italie November 10, 2012 at 1:15am Reply

    • Rowanhill: Ormond Jayne Tolu comes immediately to mind and Amouage Ubar. November 11, 2012 at 8:31am Reply

  • lari: Victoria, thanks so much for this. I love scent but only have experience with things I’ve loved over the years, fendi, caleche, morroccan jasmine kiehl…am always searching to fall in love again with something. This column has helped so much…checking into sonoma for fire walk as I loved my summer experience in California woods. I love woody stuff, with some floral or spice but the point is the this column is a wonderful jumping off spot. Thanks again. November 9, 2012 at 9:42am Reply

    • Victoria: I’m so happy to hear this, and thank you for letting me know that you already discovered something interesting. Hope that there will be more discoveries to come. 🙂 November 9, 2012 at 12:19pm Reply

  • Marijana: I like green and chypre perfumes for the day, and my signature scent for the evening is Opium. So, my question relates to daily, office fragrance. I would like to try something new, until now I wore Chanel no 19( I used several 100 ml bottles, so for now I’m done with it, although it is beautiful and perfect for the office), Y by YSL, and I also liked Rive gauche, although it’s rather strong and not so easy to wear and for me changes a lot depending on the weather… My other favourites are Paloma Picasso and recently I’ve discovered Eau du Soir too. I’ve tried to wear Cristalle but It wasn’t what I was looking for. I would like to try something ( preferably classic scent, not too retro, though) new, I’m not into niche scents, and my budget for this new perfume is up to €100 . Speaking about notes, I found out that I like perfumes with galbanum, but I am so bad with recognising notes that I couldn’t tell exactly which notes I strongly dislike, I just know that fruity florals and florals ( excluding green ones) are not for me…Looking forward to your suggestions November 9, 2012 at 9:44am Reply

    • Gvillecreative: If you like Galbanum and No 19, I’d recommend Maison Martin Margiela Untitled. It’s available at Saks, I think! There’s a L’eau version too but I prefer the Untitled. 🙂 I think it sounds like the perfect fit for you. November 9, 2012 at 10:20am Reply

      • Marijana: Thank you Gvillecreative! I will try to find it, I think we have it here in Croatia, I’ve heard about this one! November 9, 2012 at 10:30am Reply

        • Anne Sheffield: Have you tried Infusion D Iris by Prada? I love this one. It is very élégant and in my opinion a perfect day fragrance. Hugs. Anne November 9, 2012 at 10:44am Reply

          • Anna Minis: Silences (Jacomo) is in the same mood as No 19, but less expensive. November 9, 2012 at 10:46am Reply

          • Marijana: Yes, I have, I have mixed emotion about this one… Maybe because last time I tried it, it was pretty hot outside, and it was too soapy to me, but I’ll give it a chance once more.Thanks Anne! November 9, 2012 at 10:46am Reply

        • Nikki: Alliage by Estee Lauder is a great green fragrance to try. November 9, 2012 at 10:49am Reply

          • Marijana: Nikki, I’m thinking about it for a long time, but I didn’t have a chance to try it. I also think it would be a good choice… November 9, 2012 at 3:18pm Reply

      • Ann-Sofie: Why not try the ultimate classic chypre: Mitsouko? Almost a century old, and still edgy. And speaking about edgy, Knowing/Estee Lauder is rose chypre with thorns. November 9, 2012 at 11:19am Reply

        • Nikki: Yes, Knowing is a great fragrance to try! So is Jean Louis Scherrer, the original. Maybe even Norell, another green and gold fragrance.. November 9, 2012 at 11:28am Reply

        • Marijana: I had Mitsouko and Knowing, they didn’t work, unfortunately. Knowing was, for me, too demanding, and I didn’t feel it suited me. Nevertheless, thank you for your recommendation! November 9, 2012 at 3:13pm Reply

          • Leonie: Maybe you could try Estée by Estée Lauder? November 10, 2012 at 6:36am Reply

            • Marijana: Hi Leonie, I ‘ve tried Estee recently, and although it is beautiful, I didn’t see myself wearing it, unfortunately. I have to admit, although I really admire Estee Lauder fragrances, I have never found one that would suit me…. November 10, 2012 at 6:09pm Reply

          • Rowanhill: How about Hermes Caleche? November 11, 2012 at 8:35am Reply

    • Elisa: Estee Lauder Private Collection!

      Another chypre with a big galbanum note is Safari if you can find it. November 9, 2012 at 11:31am Reply

      • Marijana: Wow, I have to try Private collection, it goes on my must-try list! Safari I have tested and for me it is more-lush floral that green…Thanks! November 9, 2012 at 3:14pm Reply

    • D: I think Seville D’Aube is an elegant office scent. November 9, 2012 at 12:37pm Reply

    • annemariec: How about Guerlain’s Chamade? It’s a classic, hopefully not too retro for you, and well within your budget. Galbanum, hyacinth, blackcurrant, lily of the valley, rose … lots of beautiful notes. I wear the EDP, which has a strong note of vanilla that I don’t notice in the EDT, which I find sharper with blackcurrant. November 9, 2012 at 5:14pm Reply

      • Marijana: Ok, another one goes on my list, I have to try it.Thanks! November 10, 2012 at 6:10pm Reply

    • Nina Z: My favorite galbanum (with rose and iris) scent is Annick Goutal Heure Exquise. Similar to Chanel No 19, but warmer and more sensual. November 9, 2012 at 8:08pm Reply

      • annemariec: Oh good call, Heure Exquise is beautiful. November 9, 2012 at 8:19pm Reply

      • Marijana: Thank you, I’m not so familiar with any of Annouck Goutal perfumes, therefore-I have to try this one, sounds really great! November 10, 2012 at 6:12pm Reply

    • sara: Why not trying Eau de Campagne by Sisley? I have read of your tastes and these are so similar to mine. If you are able to find 122 or 250 ml bottles these are much interesting and greenish than new 100 ml version.
      You can also try Chanel Bel Respiro, green notes and leather. November 11, 2012 at 2:28pm Reply

      • Marijana: Wow, I adore Eau de campagne! You really managed to get my taste based on few facts I gave, i am impressed. I have a 100ml bottle though… You think of it as something that could be worn the whole year?I’ll try, thanks! November 19, 2012 at 1:49pm Reply

  • Susie: I am moderately experienced with perfumes. Thank you all for the education I’ve garnered in only three days on this site!! 🙂

    I went to Niemann’s and Saks yesterday with a list of things I wanted to smell or try. I found Kai in a small boutique in Hana, Hawaii years ago and had no idea that it was a “celebrity” thing. That would have actually made me NOT want to wear it. After reading here, I do agree that it doesn’t have a lot of depth (but I still love the smell!) Anyway, the other perfume I have loved is D&G Light Blue (it’s gotten too common!). I also like spraying on Bath & Bodyworks Honeysuckle if I’m not well dressed for the day or am going out to garden. I don’t love but have liked enough to purchase: Issey Mikaye L’eau d’issey EDP, and Panthere Cartier EDP.

    After researching here, the list I went “nose surfing” with included: Carnal Flower, Kilian Rose Oud, Kilian Water Calligraphy, Jungle L’Elephant, and Robert Piguet’s Fracas. Out of my list, I only got to smell Water Calligraphy (I’m in LOVE but didn’t try it on my skin) and Fracas. I don’t know if I’m “high maintenance” enough for the power of Fracas. I’m not always polished and ultra-feminine looking (eg- heels, nails, make-up, etc.)

    The lovely salesperson (Carolyn Fernandez) at Saks in St. Louis had me try a few that were not on my list. I put Jo Malone’s Dark Amber and Ginger Lilly on (there’s a special sale right now for $230 for 7oz.) which I really liked at first. It faded quickly and the close smell became too “old lady-ish” and “serious” for my personality. I did bring home samples of Jo Malone Pomegranate Noir and Amber & Lavender (which I see more on my husband who usually wears Geir Ness.) Carolyn also had me try some of the Bond series of which I liked only Park Ave., Cooper Square, and Fashion Ave. Again, I did not skin test them but have a sample of Cooper Square to try. I have the Kilian Water Calligraphy on a card which I love without the skin test and was sent home with a sample of Kilian Rose Oud which I am anxious to try.

    I smelled a lot yesterday with many sniffs of coffee beans between. I finally had to stop as I was getting a headache and my nose was getting muddled.

    What I want out of a scent: 1) Uniqueness- I want people to smell it (sillage to make a statement but not to overwhelm) and ask about it or compliment it. 2) Emotion- I want to feel fresh and clean with femininity and added mystery and depth (more than meets the “nose” if you will…) 3)Longevity. I am willing to pay for a scent (Carnal Flower is at the top of my price range) but I want quality for price. If it doesn’t last, I may as well buy something a lot less expensive that pleases me *almost* as well.

    I’m a gardener and love plants, woods and flowers. I do not love the smell of decay. I dislike most mints, spearamint (headache territory), and vanilla. Pachouli is also a smell I am not fond of unless it is extremely well blended and does not stand out. I do not want to smell like food (nod to Bath & Bodyworks and its’ ilk.) If I wanted this, I would wear bacon-scented perfume. THAT would please 99% of men, non-pork eaters included! I want to please *myself* sensations first, my husband second, and the rest of the world last.

    I know this is a lot of information but you have taught me a lot, Victoria and Suzanne. This knowledge has been supplemented by the lovely people here who take the time to comment. I know what I don’t like but am looking for just the thing for the cooler seasons that are now here.

    Thank you for all taking the time to read this and for any insight and/or suggestions you can provide!

    Susie 🙂 November 9, 2012 at 10:22am Reply

    • Ann-Sofie: Hi Susie,
      Try Gold by Donna Karan. It is a true lily with very green naturalistic opening, drydown is elegant creamy. Great sillage and staying power. I find Gold very femme and the creamy lily aspect spectacular. November 9, 2012 at 11:09am Reply

      • Susie: Hello, Ann-Sofie! 🙂

        Thank you for the recommendation. I looked it up (Gold) and wanted to ask you a question… The top note is supposed to peach and the sillage soft. Would you agree with this summary? (found on Thanks! November 10, 2012 at 11:10am Reply

        • Ann-Sofie: Hmm, on me I can not sniff any peaches – the opening (20 minutes) reminds me of newmown green grass and I also get a greenhouse feeling – like walking into a flower shop. Then comes the lilies – they are very true and clean, and for perhaps 30 minutes a bit sharp as lilies can be. Then Gold move into a creamy lily phase, which on me stays for hours. The sillage is not scary strong nor sharp, but I would not call it soft or a skin fragrance either. Medium sillage with a duration of 4-6 hours, using 3 sprays on strategic places. If I where to stand next to someone wearing Gold, my impression of the sillage would probably be fresh, very lily and quite elegant. Hope you will like it! November 11, 2012 at 10:24am Reply

          • Susie: Ann-Sofie,

            I will certainly let you know. Thank you for the further impression! 🙂 November 11, 2012 at 11:03pm Reply

            • Ann-Sofie: Susie – important! I think you looked up the wrong DK Gold – there is a DKNY Women Gold, which is a fruity floral with peaches. That is not the Gold I’m referring to here. It’s very confusing (irritating?) how they name their fragrances…Try to google “Donna Karan Gold” and use the quotation marks as I did now, and you will get the correct perfume. There are no fruits in Gold, it is almost a lily soliflore. The bottle is rectangular with a golden brass plate in front. IMO, the EDP is best – it’s richer and deeper. November 12, 2012 at 5:37am Reply

              • Susie: Thanks for the clarification! 🙂 I made a spreadsheet and have quite the list.

                I tried Bond’s Cooper Street today. Started off okay (not my favorite) but the drydown isn’t so good. At least it is lasting… November 12, 2012 at 12:51pm Reply

    • Nikki: So funny: your bacon comment! Sables by Annick Goutal is a great fragrance to try, so unique, it has immortelles flowers and although it is a “dark” fragrance, it is quite special in combining freshness with earthiness.

      Lumiere Noire by Maison Francis Kurkdjian is a stunning fragrance, it has rose, chili pepper, and patchouli, however, so well blended that only the dryness of patchouli comes through not the moth cloth patchouli found in other perfumes (Patchouli was historically used to make Jamavar shawls moth proof….).

      You may also like APOM by the same company as Lumiere Noire. I like it a lot to use during the day and also to layer with a heavier fragrance for evening. Edition Frederic Malle’s Eau d’Hiver is quite special.

      Regarding Jo Malone’s fragrances: I have never bought any and would not spend my money on her fragrances, even if they are on sale. To me, they are homemade fragrances, neither sophisticated nor special. Yves Rocher makes better fragrances by far and in a lower price range. November 9, 2012 at 11:10am Reply

      • Susie: Nikki,

        Thank you for your insights! Although I have “moderate” experience with using perfume, I don’t have much knowledge. I am so thrilled to have found you all and learn from you!

        The Jo Malone fragrances seemed too expensive for what they were…I’m glad you think that and I’m not out on left field! I think you’d have to layer them to get any depth but they wouldn’t last anyway, so there’s no point…

        I now have more to add to my list for “nose surfing.” The chili pepper intrigues me…

        After reading as much as I have lately, I have come to the conclusion that perfumes are akin to wines. You can get some good, solid, everyday scents for not a ton of money and some things with a high price tag are all style or reputation and no substance! November 9, 2012 at 12:12pm Reply

        • Daisy: I think that I am going to recommend Parfums DelRae (two comments in one post)!

          If you are a gardener, you might find a lot in the line to love. November 9, 2012 at 9:02pm Reply

      • AnneD: I think I am done with Jo Malone also, gonna use up what I have then no more. I would recommend Hermes Un Jardin Sur la Toit. Some people get a decaying note, but not on my skin. I even had my daughters put it to the test, so sample first. It satisfies my green fix along with a little sweetness and it never bores me. I am actually getting compliments on this one, so a full bottle is in my future. November 9, 2012 at 12:14pm Reply

        • Nikki: I was watching the docu on perfume with an interview of Ellena and they showed the roof garden (jardin sur le toit) at the Hermes store in Paris which was the inspiration for the perfume! I love his creations, but there is nothing better than First by Van Cleef for me which he created in 1976. November 9, 2012 at 2:48pm Reply

          • solanace: Oh, I’d love to see this garden! November 10, 2012 at 3:35am Reply

            • Susie: Me, too! As more flowers and plants become hybrized, many are losing their scents. Perfume is one big reason we need to keep the heirloom plants alive (literally!) November 10, 2012 at 10:14am Reply

        • Susie: Anne,
          It’s on the list! My list is getting longer and longer… 🙂 November 10, 2012 at 11:35am Reply

      • Susie: Nicki,

        I have had time to read and APOM, Sables, and Lumiere Noire are on my list. I will get samples, do the skin test, and see. Thank you!

        Incidentally, I used the Jo Malone Pomegranate last night; everyone detested it. Thank goodness it didn’t last so long. I will wear it (can’t let it go to waste!) on a gardening day! 🙂 November 10, 2012 at 11:22am Reply

    • Emily: One line I don’t see on your list of sniffed or to-sniff but I think it’s worth tracking down is the Penhaligon’s line, especially since their sample set is pretty reasonable and they’re increasingly accessible in the States. In character it’s very British line a la Jo Malone (i.e., mostly luminous rather than thick compositions, lots of soliflores in the line), but I find them longer lasting and often more compelling than the Malones.

      You might also try the Guerlains of more recent vintage, like the Voyages Olfactifs, like Moscow and Tokyo, which would also be light, bright, and durable.

      Oh, and if you like light, bright, unique, and durable, you want to look for works composed by Ellena and Giacobetti — those features are their hallmarks.

      One other note: one spray of Carnal Flower lasts for days, so if you find you like it when you test, it will certainly fulfill your desire for longevity! (Ironically, because it is a gift it is the largest bottle I own, but because of its power the one I wear the least!) November 9, 2012 at 11:46am Reply

      • Susie: Wow, Emily!
        Thanks for the great recommendations! I have to add them to my list. I am going to have to purchase a sample or have someone decant one of Carnal Flower as I could not get one locally. Hopefully the others are more attainable. I’ll let you know what happens. Thanks again! 🙂 November 10, 2012 at 11:31am Reply

    • hajusuuri: I recommend Ormonde Jayne Tiare. It is my new love from the OJ line…I still love Woman but this one smells a “good” clean with a good mash of flowers, sandalwood, musk, patchouli. November 9, 2012 at 10:30pm Reply

      • Susie: Thank you, Hajusurri!
        It’s on my list. I’m not a huge patchouli fan but if it’s well blended, it may work. There is nothing to do but try it! 🙂 November 10, 2012 at 11:33am Reply

    • solanace: Hi Susie,

      Since you are a gardener, I just ordered a sample set directly from the site of Les Parfums de Rosine, and I’m in love with the line. So many nice roses there! Une rose poudrée, with iris, Une folie de rose, a delicious chypre rose, un zest de rose, lemony, rose kashmir, which is safronny… They are not that long lasting, but are no Jo Malone either. Overall, the set is not expensive, and I think you would have fun with it. And the shipping is free worldwide! November 10, 2012 at 3:44am Reply

      • Susie: Solanance,

        Quick question…How long do the Rosines last? The Malones are sooo short that the price isn’t worth it to me. Thanks! November 10, 2012 at 11:32am Reply

        • solanace: It depends. Lovely ‘un zeste de rose’ is fleeting indeed, but my favorite, ‘une folie de rose’, lasts for 4 or 5 hours. November 11, 2012 at 3:37am Reply

  • BombshellB: I’m trying to “teach” myself to like tuberose and white florals but they really can be overwhelming to me. What would be some good in-roads to being a white floral lover? I WANT to like them, it’s just an acquired taste on my part. November 9, 2012 at 11:01am Reply

    • Jane: My favourite gateway white florals are, hands down, L’Artisan Parfumeur La Chasse aux Papillons (regular or Extreme) and Diptyque Do Son Eau De Parfum (not the eau de toilette). Both are soft, feminine and gorgeous. You might also want to try Child perfume….. November 9, 2012 at 11:19am Reply

      • Victoria: 2nd Jane’s recommendations! La Chasse Aux Papillons was my own introduction to white florals, and I haven’t looked back since. 🙂 November 9, 2012 at 12:18pm Reply

    • Dionne: Give Estee Lauder Private Collection Tuberose Gardenia a whirl as well. I’m not a big fan of the BWFs either, but it’s the perfect gateway. Gorgeous stuff. November 9, 2012 at 11:22am Reply

    • BombshellB: Thanks for the recs! I think I even have a sample of Do Son… November 9, 2012 at 12:21pm Reply

    • Nina Z: Chanel No 22 is my first white floral love. The incense cuts the cloying quality I find in the others. I love Carnal Flower, but after a few hours, I just want to gnaw my arm off as it turns sort of sickening. November 9, 2012 at 8:36pm Reply

      • solanace: Seconding the Chanel 22 suggestion. November 10, 2012 at 3:49am Reply

  • Dionne: I suppose I’m not the typical “recommend me a perfume” person as I’ve been down the rabbit hole a while, but I’ve got a question for my fellow perfumistas. I recently tried Neela Vermeire’s Bombay Bling, and absolutely fell in love with the juicy mango/peach note in its top notes, unfortunately it’s only there for about ten minutes. As I’m typically an incense and iris girl, it was a surprise to fall so hard for a fruity note, but now I want something that smells realistic – Mitsouko and the like don’t count, as I’m wanting a “solifruit.” November 9, 2012 at 11:20am Reply

    • Elisa: Not a solifruit, but try Sacrebleu by Parfums di Nicolai — it’s a spicy oriental with a pretty fruit note.

      Boucheron Jaipur is almost a solifruit — a rosy apricot/peach fragrance.

      I found that the new M.Micallef Vanille Fleur had a huge mango note — but be warned, I hated it. November 9, 2012 at 11:35am Reply

      • Dionne: Elisa, I have tried PdN’s Sacrebleu, but not Jaipur or Vanille Fleur, I’ll add those to the TBS list. November 9, 2012 at 9:26pm Reply

        • Nikki: Jaipur is a great fragrance to try, I love the light fruity top notes, a very happy fragrance created by Sophia Grojsman in the 90s. The flacon is so beautiful! November 10, 2012 at 12:00am Reply

    • shaney: Hi Dionne…I’m not sure if this is what you’re looking for, but have you tried Dior Diorella, the old formulation? It has a real sunny-feeling peach-honeysuckle at the heart, but opens with a great citrus. I am absolutely NOT a fruity note kind of girl, but I LOVE this fragrance, despite all notes suggesting otherwise! It’s worth a try! November 9, 2012 at 11:37am Reply

      • Dionne: I’ve tried to not go down the vintage path, but if I ever chance across the old Diorella, I’ll definitely give it a try. Thanks, Shaney. November 10, 2012 at 8:33pm Reply

    • Nikki: Have you tried Nahema by Guerlain? It has an amazing fruity note which mingles with the damask rose, it is quite special on the right woman. November 9, 2012 at 11:38am Reply

      • Dionne: I haven’t yet, although I’ve heard a lot about it. Thanks, Nikki, I’ll add it to the list. November 10, 2012 at 8:33pm Reply

    • George: Badgley Mischka is a big complex fruity fragrance without being too recognisably one fruit. If you want mango and incense, Nuit de Tubereuse by L’artisan Parfumeur is recommended: it’s a spicy fruity tuberose. A literal solifuit to be recommended is pamplelune by Guerlain, but it reveals to too many people that fruits often have quite unpleasant aspect to them, which can be too strong when the initial top notes have dissipated. November 9, 2012 at 11:59am Reply

      • Dionne: Unfortunately, both Badgley Mischka and Pamplelune didn’t work for me (many blended florals are screechy on my skin, and Pamplelune went cat pee) but I haven’t tried Nuit de Tubereuse yet, so I’ll keep that in mind. My “pamplelune” frag is Clarins Par Amour Toujours, which is technically a cassis perfume, but it smells like grapefruit to me. November 10, 2012 at 8:36pm Reply

    • Victoria: Dionne, have you tried Parfums de Nicolai Eau a la Folie? It has a big, juicy mango note wrapped into moss and jasmine. It is verging on overripe but pleasantly so.

      Another fruity favorite is Hermessence Osmanthe Yunnan. It has such a beautiful apricot note, but I will admit that it doesn’t last that long (most Hermessences don’t). November 9, 2012 at 12:17pm Reply

      • Anna Minis: What kind of fruit do you prefer? Ananas? try Patou Forever. Banana? Patou Sirah des Indes. Apple? Donna Karan Delicious or All About Eve by Joop! Berries? Mûre et musc. Also: So Pretty by Cartier, a very charming perfume with a berry note. If you can find it: Fraîche Passiflore (Maître Parfumeur et Gantier) is fruity. Figs in Philosykos or Marc Jacobs For Him. Although my cravings are not for fruity perfumes, I find the black cherries in La Petite Robe Noire very tasty! November 9, 2012 at 12:43pm Reply

        • Anna Minis: I forgot the plums! not any more much of them in Femme, alas. Try Parfum Cheri par Camille (Annick Goutal). Kind regards! November 9, 2012 at 12:48pm Reply

          • Anna Minis: Via Lanvin had a pear note, but that one is discontinued. It has a little sister: Scarlett, Cacharel November 9, 2012 at 12:56pm Reply

        • Nikki: Yes, So Pretty by Cartier! That is a wonderful fragrance, very elegant. I don’t get the fruity notes, more something like orchid. Definitely a must try and buy as it is discontinued. November 9, 2012 at 1:09pm Reply

          • Anna Minis: Hi Nikki! I smell definitely a fruity note; but we all have a different perception! Is this perfume discontinued?! Then I must try to find a bottle. Shame on Cartier. November 9, 2012 at 3:42pm Reply

            • Dionne: With the embedded comments, it’s difficult to thank everyone in the proper place: Anna Minis, thank you for all the recommendations. November 10, 2012 at 8:48pm Reply

        • Dionne: The more I think about it, the more I realize my claim that I’m not into fruity perfumes is inaccurate. I love Pulp, Par Amour Toujours, Fig Tree, Slumberhouse Pear + Olive, Perfume Pharmer’s Strawberry Passion Green and now the beginning of Bombay Bling. Huh. It’s specifically a mango/peach/apricot in its juicy form I’m looking for right now. November 10, 2012 at 8:42pm Reply

      • Dionne: I haven’t tried that PdN yet, Victoria, thank you for the recommendation, it’ll be at the top of my list. And Osmanthe Yunnan was gone in ten minutes, which really surprised me as I can get 8 hours out of a natural with my scent-glue skin. November 10, 2012 at 8:38pm Reply

    • Asali: Dionne, did you ever try Fath de Fath- the newest version. It has berries, cassis, peach, plum and others fruits, with a lovely amber dry down. Or Casmir by Chopard which also has the mango/ peach you’re after. And talking of Chopard, makes me think of Mira Baï, which I haven’t smelled in years, but which is very fruity, and no where near as oriental as one might think from the name. Good hunt:-) November 9, 2012 at 3:56pm Reply

      • Dionne: I haven’t tried Fath de Fath or Mira Bai (haven’t even heard of them, actually) but both sound lovely. Casmir I have tried, and although I love it’s left-of-center amberiness, it’s not as much fruit as I’m looking for. Thank you for your suggestions, Asali. November 10, 2012 at 8:44pm Reply

    • Asali: I forgot my own personal peach favourite: SoOud’s Ouris. Gorgeous, (and no oud, in case you wondered ;-)) November 9, 2012 at 4:04pm Reply

    • Nina Z: Keiko Mecheri Peau de Peche is a lovely peach fragrance that smells quite realistic. A really interesting peach fragrance is Bond No 9 Chinatown, which is peach with incense. Very unique (less a solifruit, however). November 9, 2012 at 8:11pm Reply

      • Annikky: Ahh, Nina Z, you beat me to it. I have just (and I mean 20 mintues ago) discovered that Keiko Mecheri has arrived in Tallinn and this reminded me of Peau de Peche. So I sat down in a cafe immediately to suggest it, but here you go:) November 10, 2012 at 8:13am Reply

      • Dionne: Oh of course, I’ve heard of Peau de Peche before, but it slipped my mind. Chinatown is lovely, but not quite what I’m looking for. Thank you, Nina. (And also Annikky.) November 10, 2012 at 8:45pm Reply

    • Daisy: Hi Dionne,

      Have you tried MDCI’s Peche Cardinal? Gorgeous, big, fat, juicy peach! November 10, 2012 at 8:58pm Reply

  • Elizabeth: First of all: Thank you for the previous recommendations! I have picked Annick Goutal Ambre Fetiche and Ormonde Jayne Tolu as my favorite incense-amber and incense-amber-floral perfumes.

    On to the next one…..what do you think of as a very “Victorian” perfume? Something that would match an image like this: November 9, 2012 at 12:26pm Reply

    • D: Those ladies would be wearing a Pelhigans, perhaps Violetta. November 9, 2012 at 12:41pm Reply

      • Anna Minis: Maybe these ladies have handkerchiefs drenched in English Lavender by Yardley. November 9, 2012 at 12:51pm Reply

        • Anna Minis: Excuse me, those ladies. November 9, 2012 at 12:52pm Reply

      • Annikky: I’m thinking violet as well – by Goutal or Sonoma Scent Studio maybe? Or Apres l’Ondee? November 9, 2012 at 1:00pm Reply

    • Ann-Sofie: Bandit/Piguet would be great, but otherwise actually Borneo 1834/Lutens. Patchouli was the outrage top hot thing then. November 9, 2012 at 12:53pm Reply

    • Nikki: Floris” Edwardian Bouquet or Stephanotis would be perfect! November 9, 2012 at 1:10pm Reply

    • E. Lime: Considering how often Victorians bathed, I might suggest ELDO’s Putain des Palaces! It even has violet, a popular Victorian scent. November 9, 2012 at 2:32pm Reply

    • Anne Sheffield: I m thinking Bluebell by Penhaligon s. xx November 10, 2012 at 2:02am Reply

    • Rowanhill: Penhaligons like Bluebell comes to mind November 11, 2012 at 8:58am Reply

  • Domestic Goblin: I am interested to see if anyone can recommended a more grown-up version of Fleur d’Interdit by Givenchy? November 9, 2012 at 12:53pm Reply

    • Rachel: I only know L’Interdit by Givenchy. What does Fleur d’Interdit smell like? November 9, 2012 at 2:36pm Reply

      • sara: It is a floral fruity powdery watery and ozonic scent that remains me Parfum d’Ete by Kenzo, why not trying Guerlain’s Champs Elysees or Burberry’s Weekend for women? November 11, 2012 at 2:37pm Reply

  • Lucas: Thanks to your suggestions I’ve found my perfect lavender in Tauer 04 Reverie au Jardin!

    Today I’d like to hear what ambery perfume can you recomment. I prefer amber to be lighter than heavy, it can have some sweet or powdery nuances.

    Also please tell me what are some good incense perfume that won’t make me smell like a church (I really fancy Kyoto which has such transparent incense)

    Thanks for all suggestions November 9, 2012 at 12:57pm Reply

    • silverdust: Henri Bendel’s Fireside has a nice, smokey incense note and smells like a masculine. It gets lots of compliments and my daughter tells me I smell like a guy in one of her classes! So this one would be great for you, but I like it too! November 9, 2012 at 2:29pm Reply

      • Lucas: Thanks for your suggestion. Where is this Fireside fragrance available? I tried to search but with no results November 10, 2012 at 2:56am Reply

    • Rachel: L’Artisan L’Eau d’Ambre is a great light amber scent. November 9, 2012 at 2:36pm Reply

      • Anna Minis: Lucas, do you know Sublime by Patou(amber). Not exactly an incense, but in that mood (to my nose): Shaal Nur by Etro November 9, 2012 at 3:47pm Reply

        • Lucas: I don’t know Patou Sublime. I wonder if there’s a place in Poland I can try it. November 10, 2012 at 2:58am Reply

      • Lucas: @Rachel. Many L’Artisans I tried totally didn’t work for me, but maybe this one will November 10, 2012 at 2:57am Reply

    • Asali: Hi Lucas, the most transparent incense I can think of is L’Ether by IUNX. Very transparent, veil-like and very Giacobetti. For Ambers, did you try Alahine? November 9, 2012 at 4:01pm Reply

      • Lucas: Oo! I’ve got a sample of Alahine I didn’t try yet, got to dig it up.
        I’m not familiar with L’Ether thought November 10, 2012 at 2:59am Reply

    • Cybele: Hi Lucas, for amber I second L’Eau d’Ambre. Also recommend you Anne Pliska, Guerlain Attrape Coeur, and Youth Dew Amber Nude.
      Incense- Timbuktu November 9, 2012 at 5:18pm Reply

      • Lucas: Thanks! I’ll check if I can find any of these nearby November 10, 2012 at 3:00am Reply

    • Nina Z: For the incense fragrance, try Annayake Miyako (very cheap now on ebay). It’s a beautiful lighter amber with incense, so maybe there’s your amber, too. Very comforting. I’ve recommended it to a number of perfumista friends who bought it blind and they all loved it! November 9, 2012 at 8:13pm Reply

      • Lucas: Thanks for suggesting it, will try to find a sample November 10, 2012 at 3:01am Reply

    • Daisy: You have tried Seville à l’aube, right? I’m trying to remember from your blog . . . Orange blossom, beeswax, lavender, and incense. Beautiful. November 9, 2012 at 9:04pm Reply

      • Lucas: Yes, I tried Seville a l’Aube but I didn’t like it at all 🙁 November 10, 2012 at 3:01am Reply

        • Daisy: Aw! 🙁 November 12, 2012 at 2:30pm Reply

    • RVB: One of the most beautiful amber perfumes I’ve ever tried is Opus VI by Amouage-a truly golden amber with a dry 3 dimensional feel-weightless but with substance.Sonoma Scent Studio’s Winter Woods is a beautiful Amber with a touch of woodsmoke and mulling spices.As for non liturgic incense I would recommend Incense Oud by Killian.As smooth an incense as you will find with notes of cardamom,papyrus,turkish rose,cedarwood and oakmoss. It’s warm and enveloping without the church feel.And despite the name there’s no Oud in it.Passage d’Enfer by L’Artisan Parfumeur is a pine like incense but combined with a lily note that moves it away from the church feel.And finally Incense Pure by Sonoma Scent studio is a beautiful outdoorsy pine incense liking taking a breath of fresh winter air(Filles en Aguilles by Serge Lutens is a similar pine incense melted into a candied fruit base) November 10, 2012 at 1:30am Reply

      • Lucas: Opus VI sounds interesting (but it’s SO expensive!). I’ve got a sample of winter woods and each time I dab from my sample I think it’s ideal amber for me so I might end up with this one.
        Incense Oud. I tried Amber Oud and Rose Oud, they were both nice. Need to try Incense one someday.

        Thanks for all suggestions November 10, 2012 at 3:03am Reply

        • Dionne: Lucas, I PM’d you over at Facebook about WW. November 10, 2012 at 11:43am Reply

          • Lucas: I just read it and replied. Thanks for contacting me. November 10, 2012 at 12:05pm Reply

  • Elysia: This is a fascinating and much needed service, for someone like me who has tried for years to find a perfume she adores.

    I am 38 years old, and as a young woman used to wear Chanel 19, but it lost its charm years ago. Utterly.

    Since then I have tried smelling everything I can with no luck; they either give me migraines — I have a super sensitivity to “faux” scents (and have no language wrt perfumes, obviously … ), or smell too predictable, or are too sickeningly sweet, powdery, or too brash and heavy, or “girlie.”

    I write this wearing Hermessence Poivre Samarcande which I have adored all day despite the sweet edge I am getting with nary a hint of a headache — but now I wonder if I adore it because I’d want to do nefarious things to any man wearing it.

    Basically, I need an intelligent, sensuous, spicy, scent that is decidedly feminine, without being too much. I still like fresh, zingy scents, but I need it to have a bit more to it. If I could smear myself in cardamom and have the scent stay on all day, I would.

    I am a dark auburn (natural) with golden pink skin and olive green eyes. [Not sure why that was relevant but I saw others writing it, alors voila.]

    Help. please? Pretty please? Avec du sucre? November 9, 2012 at 1:24pm Reply

    • Rachel: You should try Annick Goutal Heure Exquise. And I’m loving Balenciaga Paris for a green, zingy scent. November 9, 2012 at 2:34pm Reply

      • Elysia: I am overwhelmed by the options you have all offered. Incredibly kindness, to offer your knowledge to a stranger.
        Shall definitely report back on my finds. Maybe this afternoon, as my plans to go restock my closet with black cashmere may now also include a jaunt to a parfumerie … November 11, 2012 at 1:02pm Reply

    • Lucia: Have you tried Amouage Gold? Now there’s an amazingly feminine intelligent spicy grown-up scent! Try all the Amouage perfumes (the femme ones) – because Lyric and Dia might also be for you, if you find Gold to be too strong. I also recommend you try Mediterraneo, by Carthusia. The composition is very lively with a burst of citrus that energizes, and then it sweetens into a beautiful green tea before it dries down into an airy sweetened amber. This is a refreshing, Italian perfume with distinct character and beautiful sillage. Finally because you love cardamom so much, I will recommend the best cardamom perfume that exists: Un Jardin Apres la Mousson by Hermes. It’s an EDT that is spicy, floral, and vegetal without having patchouli. November 9, 2012 at 2:55pm Reply

      • Elysia: I must say, your descriptions are utterly delectable. Am intrigued by them all. November 11, 2012 at 1:03pm Reply

    • Annikky: As you mentioned cardamom, I suggest trying Lumiere Blanche by Olfactive Studio. I think it covers at least “intelligent” and “not too much” and it is gently spicy with some citrus. I liked my sample a lot and Victoria’s review was very complimentary as well. Which gives me courage to post this comment, despite your challenging brief:) Good luck with finding something you like! November 9, 2012 at 2:59pm Reply

      • Elysia: Sigh. it was a challenging brief, was it not? I try to live simply and yet find mye nature tends to complicate things, if only in ways which are not predictable. 😉
        But thank you for making the effort as have never even heard of the Olfactive Studio and am now intrigued.

        (Is it wrong for me to sometimes be turned off a perfume by its very name? Or is that me giving more credit to the marketing folk than they deserve, wrt their ability to find a word that truly encompasses the effect of the scent?) November 11, 2012 at 1:06pm Reply

        • Annikky: Not that I am any kind of authority on the subject, but I believe it is only natural to have a reaction to the name, bottle and marketing of a perfume. And as the market is so saturated, testing scents with an appealing name/bottle/campaign can be a pretty effective strategy – especially in the beginning, when one doesn’t have a very clear understanding of the notes, brand and perfumer styles, ones own likes and dislikes. November 15, 2012 at 7:19am Reply

    • Austenfan: Second Goutal’s Heure Exquise. Not sweet, very feminine and utterly gorgeous. I have never smelled the old No.19, like the new one quite a lot. Heure Exquise is similar, but not the same.
      You might want to try Goutal’s Mon Parfum Chéri par Camille as well. And the Aromatics Elixir 40th Anniversary Edition.
      Have you ever tried Bottega Veneta? That might fit the bill as well. A little sweeter than the others I mentioned but not overly so and it’s got the leather that apparently No.19 used to have. Good luck! November 9, 2012 at 3:08pm Reply

    • Nina Z: For cardamom try Parfumerie Generale Indochine (a benzoin scent, I believe). Also Jungle L’Elephant (though that is a plummy scent). One of my favorite spicy scents is Diptyqe Eau Lente. It smells more natural than most of the other scents (I think I know what you mean about the artificial notes you get sometimes). Lately I’ve been wearing Karl Lagerfeld KL, which is a gorgeous spicy scent, but it has been discontinued. But if you can find some…. November 9, 2012 at 8:19pm Reply

      • Nina Z: Oh, I forgot to mention Frederic Malle Noir Epices. This spicy scent is more subtle than the others and, because it has real orange in it, might smell more natural to you. November 9, 2012 at 8:26pm Reply

        • Elysia: Oh! How delicious. November 11, 2012 at 1:07pm Reply

      • Nikki: KL was a great oriental scent! November 10, 2012 at 12:10am Reply

    • Nikki: I can relate to the disenchantment with Chanel 19! I used it exclusively while studying in West Berlin and I had to cross the border to East Berlin, Bahnhof Friedrichstrasse to buy it dutyfree! I smelled it on other women later on but it is over the love affair, it is too distant, too cold for me now.
      May I suggest to check out Maison Francis Kurkdijan? I adore his fragrances, Lumiere Noire and APOM, all his line is just magnificent. To me, he is the best young perfumer out there. Very sophisticated and sensuous, really special and unique fragrances. Try the samples… November 10, 2012 at 12:08am Reply

      • Elysia: Special and unique. SOLD. November 11, 2012 at 1:07pm Reply

    • RVB: Try Idole by Lubin in the EDP- a gorgeous spicy saffron scent with notes of Rum absolute, saffron, black cumin, bitter orange peel, Doum palm, rock rose, smoked ebony, frankincense, sugar cane, leather, red sandalwood, amber.It’s one of the most unique spicy scents I’ve come across.I second the recommendation of Lumiere Blanche-a gorgeous scent of cardamom,milky notes and creamy sandalwood.Check Victoria’s review for a beautiful description November 10, 2012 at 1:36am Reply

      • Elysia: Why is that the perfumes I smell every day have nowhere near the range, depth and gorgeousness you are describing here?
        How is it people – such as myself – live in a world of brash, ugliness?
        How do we take this thread to all and sundry, and transform the experience of an elevator ride, deli lineup or plane flight ? November 11, 2012 at 1:09pm Reply

    • Figuier: If you like the Hermes style and find their perfumes comfortable to wear, you might try Santal Massoia, another of the Hermessences, which is a lovely milky wood, with figs and flowers, sweet but not too much. November 10, 2012 at 5:41am Reply

    • Elisa: For intelligent/sensuous/spicy I recommend YSL Nu or Ormonde Jayne Woman. They both have a cardamom note! November 10, 2012 at 11:41am Reply

    • Cybele: try Danna Karan Chaos! November 10, 2012 at 7:27pm Reply

      • Cybele: sorry, obviously Donna November 10, 2012 at 7:29pm Reply

    • Dionne: Zingy, sensual and spicy? I’ll ditto the Lumière Blanche, YSL Nu, and Santal Massoia, and add Jacomo Art Collection #08 to that list. Just sampled it a few weeks ago and went straight to full bottle buy ($30 from It’s a spicy/milky chai scent with a hint of smoke, subtle but long-lasting. November 10, 2012 at 8:54pm Reply

    • Elysia: I might also be interested in something peppery. Just to throw a curve ball out there … Call this a shameless effort to try to glean more from your knowledge. 😉 November 11, 2012 at 1:10pm Reply

    • sara: I second Annick Goutal’s l’heure exquise. November 11, 2012 at 2:40pm Reply

  • SoirdeParis: Hey! I’m only just really getting into fragrances, but I’ve always been fascinated with them.
    I’m 19, probably with a budget of around £30 give or take, possibly able to branch out a little more for that perfect scent!
    I am a big contradiction. I love the idea of the femme fatale, that raw attractiveness that is appealing to everyone, alla Marilyn Monroe or the most fabulous Bond girls, but I also love classiness and elegance. Grace Kelly, the society queen turned real life princess is a huge icon of mine.
    Perfumes I’ve worn before and liked are CK’s Contradiction, Kylie Minogue’s Darling and Gucci Guilty. I also love Elizabeth Arden’s Red Door as well as dying to try a whole range of Chanel products: No5, Coco and Coco Noir. Hopefully someone can help, thanks! 🙂 November 9, 2012 at 1:49pm Reply

    • Victoria: £30 is about $50. So, let’s see… Agent Provocateur (for a femme fatale appeal) is an interesting fragrance that really blends sensuality and elegance. I also love Hermes 24 Faubourg, which I don’t hesitate to recommend to you, because if you love Red Door, you might enjoy a classical, big & bold perfume like 24 Faubourg.

      Coco Noir sounds something you would enjoy too. It’s easy to like, but it’s really well-made and polished. November 9, 2012 at 2:57pm Reply

      • Ann-Sofie: I second Agent Provocateur – it is a lovely fragrance, a rosy smile with quite a punch. Subtle in the start, and then wham bang – georgeous! I bought a full bottle only two days ago;) November 9, 2012 at 4:50pm Reply

    • Jan Last: Victoria has been a wonderful guide for me. I put my initial money into samples, then made a spread sheet to give me structure and tell me what it is I’m smelling. Now, I’m slowly purchasing the “wonderfuls” on my list. To me, it is worth saving up for a couple of months for a scent I will wear for a long time. Hope this helps! November 9, 2012 at 3:23pm Reply

      • Susie: I love the way you’re doing this…I may take your methods and use them myself. 🙂 November 10, 2012 at 4:25pm Reply

    • annemariec: If you want to dabble in niche, have a look at Sonoma Scent Studio: prices are very reasonable and you can buy samples. Jour Ensolleille springs to mind as a possibility (orange blossom, tuberose, jasmine), as it may appeal to that femme fatale aspect of your taste. I also strongly second Victoria’s suggestion of 24 Faubourg. November 10, 2012 at 2:34am Reply

    • Figuier: There are a few options that just about fit your price range if you shop on discount sites: Hermes Eau des Merveilles has sparkly orange up top, but then dried down to a really nice relaxed amber. Then there’s Bulgari Jasmin Noir, which is a little further into the femme fatale range, but still approachable and easy to wear – it’s got a faint licorice note which might be problematic, but mainly it’s a powdery, woody jasmine. Mon Jasmin Noir, a flanker, is apparently lighter but quite nice too although I haven’t tried it myself. And if you like Gucci Guilty I think Love by Chloe might be a good choice; it’s got that blend of fresh and sensuous – available for £34 on Fragrance Direct apparently (not affiliated).

      In the more affordable price range you could look at lines that specialise in skin care but also do scent: the Body Shop, L’Occitane, and Yves Rocher (YR have reasonable prices and good-quality scents – try Jasmin Tendre, Comme une Evidence or – for a slightly more gourmand option – Iris Noir) November 10, 2012 at 5:26am Reply

  • Ann-Sofie: Are there any black pepper perfumes out there for me? I would so much appreciate advice on a fragrance with a distinct pepper note with longevity and preferably good sillage (dry skin and small pores – I do not hold fragrance very well, lighter perfumes tend to disappear on me). I love ambery and/or spicy drydowns, but not to heavy. Opium is an absolute no-no for me, as well as heavy gourmands as Angel and Lolita Lempicka. I love 31, Rue Cambon/Chanel (there is some pepper in the opening, is it not?) as well as patchouli. Floriorientals suits me fine, as well as feminine woods. November 9, 2012 at 1:58pm Reply

    • Rachel: Have you tried L’Artisan Poivre Piquant or Lorenzo Villoresi Piper Nigrum? Those are my go-to pepper scents. November 9, 2012 at 2:35pm Reply

    • Nikki: Caron’s Parfum Sacre has a pink pepper note… November 9, 2012 at 2:49pm Reply

    • Jan Last: Please read up! I love the peppery scent of 1000 Flowers Reglisse Noir! Can you tell it’s my current favorite? November 9, 2012 at 3:17pm Reply

      • Elisa: I was going to mention 1000 Flowers too! Very peppery up top, great drydown. November 10, 2012 at 11:42am Reply

        • Daisy: Not black pepper, but gorgeous pink peppercorns in the new-ish series from Kilian: In the city of Sin. Cardamom too! November 12, 2012 at 2:32pm Reply

          • Ann-Sofie: Love cardamom! And pink pepper is fine too. Will try to sniff this one. Thanks Daisy! November 12, 2012 at 5:07pm Reply

    • Ann-Sofie: Many thanks Rachel, Nikki and Jan Last! I have not yet tried any of your suggestions, but I have been curious about Poivre Piquant and Parfum Sacre and are going to try them. Lorenzo Villoresi and 1000 Flowers are new to me, but they are now on my sample list! November 9, 2012 at 4:56pm Reply

    • Maggie: Farmacia SS Annunziata Isos is pepper, pepper and pepper and was in the end way too much black pepper for me, but might be just what you are looking for. Also Shams by Memo is an extremely bright peppery oud which you might like. November 9, 2012 at 5:33pm Reply

      • Ann-Sofie: Oh, “pepper, pepper and pepper” – Annunziata Isos could be The One. A must try! And if it does not work out on my skin, I might use it in cooking:) Thanks Maggie! November 10, 2012 at 4:09am Reply

    • hajusuuri: Have you tried Amouage Interlude Woman? November 9, 2012 at 10:37pm Reply

      • Ann-Sofie: No, I have not – the pricing on Amouage makes the line unnattainable for me (at the moment, anyway). But I know their fragrances are much loved by many, so I will try to sample it. The danger in sampling is when one falls in love and then got to have it, no matter what. Thanks Hajusuuri! November 10, 2012 at 4:18am Reply

    • RVB: I’d recommend Idole by Lubin,a spicy saffron scent with rum and mahogany and a pronounced pepper opening.It comes in an EDT as well as a new stronger EDP.Poivre Piquant by L’Artisan Parfumeur combines pepper with a peony note.Poivre Samarcande by Hermes has a soft greenish pepper note.It’s very nice although fleeting.Le Labo Poivre 23 is a balsamic thyme and pepper scent.And Marc Jacobs Bang and Bang Bang is all about pepper with Iso e super.Finally Isfarkand by Ormonde Jayne is a lovely lime and pepper scent that melts into a soft violet base(A radiant violet via Iso E Super). November 10, 2012 at 12:43am Reply

      • Ann-Sofie: What an useful list – thanks RVB! Poivre Piquant is now a must try, and Poivre Samarcande as well. I did some sneaking around at Le Labos website, so Poivre 23 is on my list too. And thanks for mentioning Bang and bang Bang – those I can probably find at a department store, I would not have thought of them without your recommendation. November 10, 2012 at 4:25am Reply

    • sara: Try Nez a Nez “Rosier Ardent” white pepper, black pepper, vetiver and caraway plus rose. I adore it! November 11, 2012 at 2:46pm Reply

      • Ann-Sofie: Yummy – pepper and rose! Must try, besides pepper, I have been craving roses lately. Thanks Sara! November 11, 2012 at 5:04pm Reply

        • ojaddicte: A peppery rose scent that I’ve recently stumbled upon is Chopard Madness. Strong pepper up front, softening down to a suede-like cashmere rose. November 12, 2012 at 12:06am Reply

          • Ann-Sofie: I googled Chopard Madness – it is available online, not expensive at all and there are some raving reviews about it. This might turn into a blind buy for me. Thanks Ojaddicte! November 12, 2012 at 4:25am Reply

  • Jan Last: Is there such a thing as a Christmas perfume? Does it smell like pine, or perhaps lilke old-fashion ribbon candy? is it spicy? As the Grandmother I am, I would love for the Grandkids to remember Christmas, and me and be able to connect it with a signature scent.
    Or have I finally gone round the bend? November 9, 2012 at 3:27pm Reply

    • Elizabeth: Clinique Wrappings smells like pine and winter air. It definitely reminds me of Christmas! November 9, 2012 at 4:16pm Reply

    • Leah: Hi Jan Last – for me, Nuit de Noel (Christmas Eve) by Caron is the perfect Christmas scent. Legend has it that the perfumer behind it created it for his partner, who loved Christmas scents. Victoria has written a wonderful review, so I won’t take up more space here. November 9, 2012 at 4:28pm Reply

      • Jan Last: I’ll read the review right away. Thank you all for the wonderful suggestions. If I am able to get samples, I’ll try them all. November 10, 2012 at 1:34pm Reply

    • Cybele: Estee Lauder Youth Dew Amber Nude is a very nice Christmas scent. It is discontinued but you should still find it online. Actually, all the ambers I recommended above have a Chrismas vibe: Guerlain Attrape Couer (discontinued, but try a decant!), and Anne Pliska. November 9, 2012 at 5:23pm Reply

    • Suzanna: That’s Fille en Aiguilles for me, Jan Last. There is a marvelous, sappy pine note that lasts and lasts, over a gingerbread-y and woody base. I wear it all year long, but appreciate most at Christmas. November 9, 2012 at 5:44pm Reply

    • Nina Z: Orange and spices = Frederic Malle Noir Epices. That’s kind of Christmassy, right? November 9, 2012 at 8:32pm Reply

      • Jan Last: Yummy! I just wandered to Nordstrom to smell as many as possible. No Malle, but perhaps I can find something on ebay to sample. November 10, 2012 at 1:36pm Reply

    • RVB: I second Suzanna’s recommendation of Filles en Aguilles.It’s a beautiful scent of an airy pine like incense wrapped in a candied fruit drydown.Also Sonoma Scent Studio’s Winter Woods is a beautiful ambery spicy scent with a touch of woodsmoke-like sipping mulled cider by the fire November 10, 2012 at 12:47am Reply

      • Annikky: I agree with both of those. They have this gorgeous wintery mood without turning into a Christmas cliche. November 10, 2012 at 6:17am Reply

    • Lucas: I would say Annick Goutal Nuit Etoilee smells of Christmas. Citrusy and piney accords that evolve into smell of warm and resinous wood, like a fireplace of campfire. November 10, 2012 at 3:05am Reply

      • Jan Last: Just ordered some, and thank you! November 10, 2012 at 1:31pm Reply

      • sara: I second Annick Goutal’s “nuit étoilée”. Regards November 11, 2012 at 2:47pm Reply

      • Jan Last: Nuit Etoilee is a simply wonderful winter/Christmas perfume. So happy you mentioned it. Serge LutensFive O’Clock au Gingembre is a great Grandma at Christmas as well. The Possets collection was a riot! I wore the Silver Carnation to work, and was told I smelled as if I’d just been squashed by an 800 pound flower. The Caron is sooo elegant. To all of you, thanks so much! November 20, 2012 at 6:06pm Reply

    • Lucia: The perfume I wear every Christmas is called Indulge, by Eadward. You can find it pretty cheap on Ebay. This perfume is all Christmas cooking and baking.. you will smell like a gingerbread cookie with hints of vanilla, spices, and even a little chocolate. It has sweet amber too. The drydown is heavenly and I love to sniff my sweaters the next day to find the gorgeous sweet gourmand fragrance deep in the soft cashmere. This is a perfume your grandchildren would associate with you, with holidays, with happiness. I adore it. November 10, 2012 at 12:52pm Reply

      • Jan Last: Thanks so much! I’m making my list and checking it twice!! And one of my Grand daughters (age eight) just won Student of the Month from the Baldwin School in Puerto Rico. We’ll be there for Christmas, I’m excited, as she loves to smell through my perfumes. November 10, 2012 at 1:30pm Reply

        • Lucia: Hi Jan. I will have to come back to post some sites because it looks like the eadward site doesn’t accept online orders any more, and the perfumed court is closed. I’ll be back with what I can find out. I do truly believe this is perfect for the Nana in all of us. But — if this for some reason doesn’t work out, I want to also recommend the following Possets perfumes (don’t mind the names, the perfumes are very inexpensive and totally wonderful):

          . November 10, 2012 at 3:47pm Reply

          • Jan Last: Thanks so much for the extra trouble you went to for me. I most appreciate it. November 11, 2012 at 1:30pm Reply

          • Jan Last: OMG!!!!!! You have to head to this site just to look around, it’s perfectly unstuffy and surprizingly funny. Of course, I ordered the two you sent urls about. Jingle Bells!

            Laughing all the way November 11, 2012 at 1:34pm Reply

            • Lucia: YAY!!! hehehe I bet you will love the perfumes and I KNOW the kids will. These are just so cute and inexpensive and fun to wear. I’m so glad you like them!! Must let us know how they are on your skin and how the grandkids react. I know that kids associate cookie and baking smells with the holidays so … this should be great. 🙂 hugs November 11, 2012 at 3:31pm Reply

      • Jan Last: I was unable to find this one…is there a web site I’m missing? The only other thing that is missing is my bank balance! November 10, 2012 at 2:53pm Reply

    • Dionne: Strangely enough, Feminité de Bois is one I think of as a Christmas scent, with the spices, dried fruit and woodsy aspects. Give Estee Lauder’s Sensous a whirl first to see if you like it, because it’s part of that family tree.

      Something else to consider is the Holiday Collection Sample Pack by Dawn Spencer Hurwitz, with 12 fragrances she’s created over the years for Christmas/Hanukah/Winter Solstice/I’m-sure-I’ve-missed-a-holiday. I ordered it two years ago, and there are some lovely scents in it. November 10, 2012 at 9:04pm Reply

      • Jan Last: Dionne, the Holiday Collection was surprizingly affordable, and I enjoyed reading about the scents. Thank you! November 11, 2012 at 2:19pm Reply

    • Rowanhill: Chanel Bois des Iles November 11, 2012 at 9:08am Reply

    • Merete: Sorry for being so late in answering.
      Hermes’ Elixir de Merveilles seems very bonfirecosy and “christmassy” to me. Chocolate and orange peel. When visiting the Hermes boutique to buy a present, I sort of bought the Elixir by mistake as I actually wanted Eau de Merveilles. November 15, 2012 at 10:35am Reply

  • Leah: A friend of mine has been trying to find a discontinued love – Romeo di Romeo Gigli (original EdP). I was able to find her a bottle, but am trying to help her find some alternatives which might be more readily available and affordable. I am not familiar with the fragrance, but it seems to be dominated by jasmine and freesia. Would also love to hear any resources you all may have for finding discontinued fragrances aside from Ebay. Thanks in advance for any suggestions! November 9, 2012 at 4:37pm Reply

    • Suzanna: Leah, eBay is probably the best resource, but from time to time perfumes pop up on Web sites that sell nostalgia or vintage items. And there are always yard sales (you’d be surprised).

      I don’t really recall Romeo other than the bottle, but you might consider (not that these would be the same) REM by Reminiscence for a sheer floral. November 10, 2012 at 2:36am Reply

    • Austenfan: I vaguely remember that one. My sister in law used to wear it. More stately but in a similar vein is I think First by Van Cleef and Arpels. Don’t let her be put off by the aldehydes, once they settle down it is soft and floral.
      I think Diptyque has a freesia scent called Ofresia. I have never smelled that one, but it might be worth a try. November 11, 2012 at 5:08am Reply

  • Cyndi: I would like a recommendation on a new fall/winter . I’m in my late fifties, so I wouldn’t want anything girlie or to young. I like Organza Indecence by Givenchy, Chanel No 5, and some of the old Guerlain’s like L’Heure Bleue and Shalimar. Would love something for a mature woman, but also elegant and somewhat sensual. November 9, 2012 at 6:33pm Reply

    • Gretchen: Sonoma Scent Studio Nostalgie may fit the elegant bill, but perhaps not quite the sensual aspect. It seems a bit counterintuitive, but I prefer Hermes’ 24 Faubourg in the winter. And Chanel Bois des Iles is the scent I would swim in, given the opportunity. November 9, 2012 at 7:33pm Reply

      • Cyndi: I’ve always wanted to try Chanel Bois des Iles…I have to get a sample of that! November 9, 2012 at 8:28pm Reply

    • Nina Z: Tolu by Ormonde Jayne. Sacrebleu by Patricia de Nicholai. Mona di Orio Vanille. Frederic Malle Musc Ravageur. November 9, 2012 at 8:31pm Reply

    • RVB: Try Oriental Lounge by The Different Company with notes of Bergamot, curry leaf, pepper, red rose, labdanum, tonka bean and satinwood.It’s has a retro classic feel to it.For elegant throwback scents try Andy Tauer’s new Tableau scents Miriam and Loretta.Loretta is a rich spicy floriental and Miriam is a vintage like fragrance with notes of Fresh citrus accord, geranium, violet blossom, rose, jasmine, ylang, violet leaf, lavender, vanilla, orris root, sandalwood. November 10, 2012 at 1:42am Reply

    • Cybele: 31, Rue Cambon Chanel and Enlevement en Serail Parfums MDCI November 10, 2012 at 2:38am Reply

      • Cyndi: Never tried Enlevment en Serail Perfumes MDCI…worth a try. November 10, 2012 at 2:38am Reply

    • Lucas: Chanel Beige or Cuir de Russie also do great on cold days November 10, 2012 at 3:06am Reply

    • Austenfan: I second the recommendation of Nicolaï’s Sacrebleu. Her Vanille Tonka might fit the bill as well. It has vanilla but lots of other things as well, so it isn’t overly gourmand.
      Staying with the same house ( and what a great one it is!) Her New York, a masculine, I know, but very wearable for both men and women.
      Goutal: Songes, Mon Parfum Chéri, Vanille Exquise and Heure Exquise.
      Divine: L’Ame Soeur, and Divine.
      Maître Parfumeur et Gantier: Fleurs des Comores.
      Parfums Delrae: Bois de Paradis, Mythique.

      Have fun hunting! November 10, 2012 at 9:51am Reply

  • Nicole: Ooo, I’m so excited about this!!

    I’m 28 years old, very fair skinned, brunette, tall and slender, and a therapist (so out of respect for my clients, I try to avoid sillage monsters).
    I enjoy kenzoamour, kenzo winter flowers and flower essentielle (but not the regular flower), 31RC, JHAG midnight oud, Lolita Lempicka (regular and Fleur Defendue), Blvgari Rose essentielle. I also like (and occasionally wear) classics like Mitsouko EDP and L’heure Bleu. I’m very much into incense and I especially love the japanese varieties as well as pure sandalwood slices. I have not gotten into sandalwood perfumes yet, but I would like to.

    I admire Chanels but most (except for the exclusifs) turn sour on my skin. Coco Mad. especially turns into something terrible. The only mainstream Chanel that has worked on my skin was Une Fleur. I had a spray of Sycomore and fell in love (it smelled like fresh and burnt wood on my skin). I also love Cuir de Russie.

    I am on a search for the ultimate vanilla. I recently bought a mini of Vanilla Fields (based on suggestions from other perfumistas), and I loved the softness, though I did not like the hairspray note. I enjoy Shalimar on others, but she doesn’t like me! I had a sample of Guerlain Spiriteuse Double Vanille but I found it unbearable (my impression was very similar to Victoria’s).

    If you have other recommendations those are very welcomed as well! November 9, 2012 at 8:50pm Reply

    • annemariec: There’s a million vanillas on the market! If you have a dry, non-foodie vanilla in mind, try Atelier Cologne’s Vanille Insensee. It has a lovely herbal facet I like very much. Longevity is great. I do have a bottle of Vanilla Fields and I spritz it sometimes. It’s nice! November 10, 2012 at 3:23am Reply

    • solanace: Hi, I’d recommend Patricia de Nicolai Vanille Tonka and Sacrebleu, I’m in love with both and think you might enjoy them. November 10, 2012 at 6:38am Reply

      • Nicole: These both sound wonderful! November 10, 2012 at 6:44pm Reply

    • Patt: Nicole, I also disliked Spiriteuese, but found Serge Lutens Un Bois Vanille to be the vanilla of my dreams. It is a dry, woody, and spicy vanilla with none of the cloying dry down that I experience with many other vanilla fragrances. November 10, 2012 at 8:42am Reply

      • Nicole: This is one that I keep reading about! I can’t wait to try this!! November 10, 2012 at 6:43pm Reply

    • hongkongmom: mona di orio s vanilla November 10, 2012 at 9:34am Reply

      • Nina Z: Yes, yes, yes! My favorite vanilla. Its a little smoky though, so be warned about that. November 11, 2012 at 11:40am Reply

    • Lucia: Hundreds of vanillas to try. I have several favorites… but I think one might help you in particular: L’Aromarine Vanille EDT. This is a smoky vanilla, with hints of a campfire, bourbon, and caramel. It has a long long drydown reminiscent of baking sugar cookies and resins… and will last 24 hours (unless you have dirt dry skin). L’Aromarine is one of the perfumes I reach for in the autumn because it’s so sexy and cozy at the same time; and the smokiness gives it a fascinating edge very different from other vanillas. November 10, 2012 at 12:59pm Reply

      • Nicole: Oh this sounds gorgeous! November 10, 2012 at 6:42pm Reply

  • Raluca: Hi Everyone,
    I recently bought the reformulated Organza Indecence and it’s nothing like the original. The original Indecence had so much more depth and it was a lot stronger. It’s winter and I need something to comfort me. I’m looking for a scent that’s similar to Indecence, a warm, sensual scent, a bit spicy, vanilla, not sweet. I’d be very grateful for any suggestions or ideas you might have. Thank you! November 9, 2012 at 9:12pm Reply

    • Suzanna: OI has definitely been thinned out! I still have some of an older bottle, used very sparingly when the mood strikes. For something in the same family, Sonoma Scent Studio Winter Woods, mentioned earlier, although not sure if she still makes it. November 10, 2012 at 8:25am Reply

      • Raluca: Thank you Suzanna. I will order some samples from SSS. Never tried their stuff before. November 10, 2012 at 10:50am Reply

    • Lyng: Hi Raluca!

      Biehl Parfumkunstwerke eo01 is very close to the original Organza Indecence. November 11, 2012 at 7:16am Reply

      • Raluca: Thank you! Very much appreciate it! 🙂 November 12, 2012 at 7:02pm Reply

    • sara: Try essence by Reminiscence it ¡s a similar scent. You can also f¡give a try to Cinnabar by Estee Lauder. November 11, 2012 at 3:08pm Reply

      • Raluca: Thank you Sara! I agree, Cinnabar is somewhat similar. November 12, 2012 at 7:05pm Reply

  • Mer: Hi everyone!

    Delurking here 🙂 I would like to hear your recommendations for what in your opinion is the most realistic white plumeria (frangipani) fragance. Which is the closest to the experience of smelling the damp blossom still in the bush? perhaps I should just keep on going to the botanical garden for a sniff? 🙂

    I have been perusing the archives here under “frangipani and tiare” and already made notes about Ormonde Jayne “Frangipani” and “Champaca”, Annick Goutal “Un Matin d’Orage” and Chanel “Beige”… I will go to Brussels (I live nearby) soonish and try and sniff the last two. I’ll see how to get my hands on some OJ. Perhaps London is in the not too distant future 🙂
    I would like to hear your opinions on these fragances and how they relate to the fresh blossom if you have tested them.

    I am interested in all suggestions, but in any case here goes a little about my personal preferences, which in this case may be quite irrelevant (I do love the scent of plumeria, but I am not particularly interested in it as a personal fragance, more as an experience).

    I tend to like darkish, warm and a little smoky fragances (leather, amber, patchouli, some vetivers) and also green notes (love pine and cypress for example). So although I am female I tend towards more “masculine” fragances. A few favourites (probably random, my collection is tiny!): Ambre Sultan, Miss Dior (vintage), Mon Parfum Cheri (AG), Knize Ten. I do like flowers, but just flowers is not “me”. Age may be irrelevant? I am 35 but most people think I am around 25 (probably because I do not “dress my age”, whatever that is).

    The scariest note for me is vanilla which very easily overwhelms me and even makes me nauseous, gourmand in general I am wary of. I can take vanilla in only the smallest doses and of the woody kind. This may be relevant to the plumeria recommendations, since I imagine one would resort to vanilla to convey that radiant buttery creaminess (!? – I am rather fragance illiterate, just my impression).

    Regarding budget, my upper limit is around €120 for something I absolutely love, best if that is for 75 or 100 ml, and I do have to save for some time to spend so much! so preferably lower, but there is always the possibility of samples (especially regarding the frangipani fragance, I may never need an entire bottle) so no hard rules.

    Feel free to also shoot any other recommendation based on my tastes above 🙂

    So many thanks in advance!!! November 10, 2012 at 5:51am Reply

    • Suzanna: Hi, Mer, and welcome to Bois de Jasmin!

      Although I am sure other people will have a variety of suggestions, I see you’ve already identified the Ormonde Jayne Frangipani as something worth seeking. It would be my top recommendation for you, and I urge you to seek out the wonderful lotion as well.

      Tiare–Andre Gas Ensoleille Moi has a nice rendition! November 10, 2012 at 8:19am Reply

      • Mer: Hi Suzanna, thanks for the recommendations! I am adding Ensoleille Moi to my list 🙂 November 10, 2012 at 10:24am Reply

    • Austenfan: I don’t know where you are but Ormonde Jayne is available in Rotterdam now. If you like darker scents I wonder whether you will like Frangipani, which is very gorgeous, but not dark! Her Ormonde Woman is much darker but has nothing to do with Frangipani.
      On the smokier side; Tauer: Lonestar Memories, L’Artisan Dzing!, Lancôme Cuir.
      Etat Libre d’Orange Jasmin et Cigarette is a nice combination of a slightly smoky opening and Jasmine. It has another name now though, I think it is called Jasmin et Tabac. And while you are trying the Etat Libre d’ Oranges do give Rien a sniff and L’Eau de Protection. Bold fragrances that might suit you. Plus they are not that expensive by Niche standards.
      If you like Mon Parfum Chéri you might also like the 40th Anniversary limited edition of Aromatics Elixir. November 10, 2012 at 10:00am Reply

      • Mer: Hi Austenfan, I am in Leuven, close to Brussels. I have just checked and there is OJ in Senteurs D’ailleurs in Brussels, perfect!

        Indeed this frangipani thing has nothing to do with the kind of scents I like to wear, I just so love smelling the flowers. It has to be bright!

        Thank you for your recommendations, ELd’O is long overdue for me! taking notes 🙂

        Is the 40th Anniversary LE of Aromatics Elixir quite different from the original? because I have tried and it most definitely doesn’t work for me. November 10, 2012 at 10:29am Reply

        • Austenfan: It is much softer and lacks the big opening of the original. Just go smell it. The reason I thought of it is that in my mind it is linked to MPCPC by Goutal. I actually prefer the original AE but own both.
          When you visit Senteurs in Brussels try some Malles as well. And Maître Parfumeurs et Gantiers. Especially their Route du Vetiver. Easily one of the most sinister vetivers around.
          Lucky you living in Leuven. The Begijnhof is one of my favourite places in Belgium. November 10, 2012 at 10:45am Reply

          • Mer: I’ll try and find some 40th edition to test then 🙂

            Oh yes, every time I go to Senteurs I end up completely overwhelmed, hehe 😉 I’ll keep an eye out for Route du Vetiver.

            Oh yes, beautiful isn’t it? Leuven is very nice for a city this size. I am originally from Barcelona so I love how quiet it is, while still being a living city. November 11, 2012 at 3:28am Reply

        • Victoria: I used to live in Leuven, and what a nice town! We’re in Brussels now, but we still return occasionally to walk around the Saturday market and do some shopping. Elsen Kaasambacht is my favorite stop for cheese and dried fruit. November 17, 2012 at 9:02am Reply

          • Mer: Yes, isn’t it? I had my doubts about moving to a bigger town but I think I’ve settled to the idea of staying here. Good balance between quiet and alive, and since I went for Dutch instead of French I guess that’ll be it 🙂

            I do also occasionally visit Brussels or Antwerp on Saturdays. I still have to go to Place Vendôme which I discovered through your blog!a bit apprehensive about that but looking forward to it 😉

            The choice of cheeses is great in Belgium, but I am still a bit sad I can’t find more Spanish cheeses! I don’t know if the Spanish don’t know how to sell their products or they just don’t want to share 😉 November 19, 2012 at 6:34am Reply

    • annemariec: Hi Mer, I love the scent of real frangipani. The closest I have found is indeed the OJ Frangipani, and yet somehow I don’t love it. It’s pretty, but that’s all I’d say for it. On me it has has little sillage or tenacity. Perhaps this is because I’m dabbing from a sample vial. So I hope you get a chance to give yourself a hearty spritz from a tester.

      I think I’ve tried the other frangipani candidates you mention but none of them leapt out at me as realistic frangipani. However, I’m in Australia and a local manufacturer does a lovely frangipani soap which I use to scent the towels in my linen cupboard. To me frangipani flowers have a slightly soapy character anyway, so I have pretty much decided to get my frangipani through this soap.

      Anyway, good luck! November 10, 2012 at 4:11pm Reply

      • Austenfan: Well I can confirm that Frangipani sprayed lasts 12 hrs plus on me. November 10, 2012 at 6:28pm Reply

      • Mer: Thanks annemariec, looks like I will be able to spray test it to my heart’s content 🙂

        Oh please do share which soap is this? I guess there is always a remote possibility of getting our hands on some 😀 November 11, 2012 at 3:32am Reply

        • annemariec: Okay, the place is called Destination Health (sounds liek a government health initiative, I know). Go here:

          and page through until you get to the last page (page 4) of the soaps. It is the last on the list. I quick look at the website suggests they do ship internationally. Their palm oil is from a certified source.

          I also enjoy the patchouli & sandalwood and the goat’s milk. I use the lemongrass & lemon myrtle to scent the kitchen drawer where I keep my dishcloths. (It is very strong, possibly even too strong to use in the shower.) My fave is still the frangipani, but just looking at the list I musty say I’m tempted by the orange and cinnamon … I love soap! November 11, 2012 at 8:11pm Reply

          • Mer: This is great, thank you!! November 12, 2012 at 1:24pm Reply

    • Nicole: Kenzoamour has one of the most realistic, “on the bush” frangipani notes I have ever smelled. However, the scent itself is fuzzy/warm/snuggly, but since it’s easily obtainable it might be worth a sniff! November 10, 2012 at 6:46pm Reply

      • annemariec: I’d better give that one a try! November 11, 2012 at 3:30am Reply

      • Mer: Thanks! sure this one is easy to find for me, I’ll test it! November 11, 2012 at 3:34am Reply

    • Rowanhill: Hi, I made a similar search after falling in love with the frangipani flower and the best I have found is Goutal’s Songe. Try both concentrations at the Pl. Stephanie shop in Brussels. November 11, 2012 at 9:17am Reply

      • Mer: Fantastic! thanks for the recommendation 🙂 November 12, 2012 at 1:11pm Reply

  • sabina: Hello everybody!
    I am 42, a bit masculine in taste and appearance. I love “dirty” fragrances! nothing too romantic for me. a few years ago I got the Sautes d’humeur set by Artisan and fell in love with D’humeur jalouse: green, smoky, poisonous. haven’t found anything similar since (Piment Brulant, maybe. I love, randomly: oud, Timbuktu, L’autre (talk about dirty) by Dyptique, Cendres de Thé, Like this, cypress, Cèdre (Lutens), Tam Dao, Fougère Bengale. But also: Tilleul, Bois Farine. I don’t mind smelling strange since most of the time I spary perfume just for myself. Thank you all, I really appreciate your passion! November 10, 2012 at 8:19am Reply

    • sabina: sorry for the typos…
      I would like to add that I can’t stand osmanthus. November 10, 2012 at 8:25am Reply

      • Cybele: Have you tried the Le Labo line? I especially recommend you Oud 27 (animalic oud), Rose 31 (spicy dirty rose) and Patchouli 24 (smoked sausages)! Try also French Lover by Edition Frederic Malle (poisonous geen and wood). I really like all of those, Good luck! November 10, 2012 at 10:35am Reply

        • sabina: Thank you Cybele. I was considering ordering some samples from le Labo, so now I have one reason to order them! EFM is so expensive, but maybe one day… November 10, 2012 at 10:57am Reply

          • Cybele: I only live of a sample myself, you should at least try it- it’s bitter and dry. November 10, 2012 at 1:33pm Reply

    • Austenfan: Etat Libre d’Orange Rien
      Tauer Lonestar Memories
      Goutal Sables and if by miracle you can get your hands on it L’Eau du Fier, which has apricots in the drydown and the smokiest opening you will ever find in perfumery. November 10, 2012 at 10:50am Reply

      • sabina: Sables i have, so you got my drift!
        Smoke and apricots… I’m curious. November 10, 2012 at 10:59am Reply

        • Austenfan: It has been discontinued unfortunately, bottles are still sold on ebay for very high prices. November 10, 2012 at 12:33pm Reply

      • Cybele: second Rien November 10, 2012 at 1:31pm Reply

    • Sibylle: ‘Strange and dirty’ immediately makes me think of L’Air de Rien by Miller Harris. They aimed for impressions of unwashed hair, dusty attics and floor polish – and succeeded. The result is much more attractive than this suggests (Victoria wrote a great review of it).
      Also: have you tried Youth Dew (never mind the unpleasant top note), and vintage Paloma Picasso? The former is certainly strange and the latter quite dirty. November 10, 2012 at 6:52pm Reply

      • Anna Minis: To my nose, Vetiver by Etro was too strange and dirty, I brought it back to the shop. Maybe you would like it! November 11, 2012 at 5:08am Reply

    • sara: HI, Sabina, try Amber by Mona di Orio. You will fell in love with this dark animalic smokey scent. November 11, 2012 at 3:16pm Reply

      • sara: I mean “Les Nombres d’Or: Ambre” by Mona di Orio. Regards November 11, 2012 at 3:18pm Reply


    You are all amazing! Thank you for the insightful recommendations!

    Unfortunately, my list is long (maybe that should be ‘fortunately,’ since you’ve all given me so many lovely options!) and I want to skin test them all.

    My question: Where is the most economical place to get testers or decants since I do not have ready access to a higher-end store that may carry these fragrances? Thanks for your help (once again!) Is there trading or “private” site out there for perfume addicts?

    My thanks,
    Susie November 10, 2012 at 11:41am Reply

    • Lucia: Have you looked at the Perfumed Court (online)? They sell decants from tiny tester size to great big purse size 30ml sprays. They are well priced and carry almost every perfume… if you don’t see what you want, ask for it!

      LuckyScent also sells little $3 and $4 vial samples of many of the newer perfumes. Sometimes I make an order of 20 or so, and then take months to slowly try each one… it’s fun. November 10, 2012 at 1:03pm Reply

      • Jan Last: Lucia, the last time I looked, The Perfumed Court site was down for maintenance, just a head’s up. November 11, 2012 at 1:22pm Reply

    • Maggie: Also, Surrender to Chance ( Same idea as The Perfumed Court. November 10, 2012 at 5:00pm Reply

    • Elena: too, and you can put some of what you spent on samples toward a full bottle eventually. November 10, 2012 at 10:20pm Reply

      • Suzanna: I second Aedes. I’ve been using their sample program for years! November 11, 2012 at 9:56am Reply

  • julie: I am a brunette, light brown eyes, light olive in complexion.
    I love to wear black, I love red shoes, I love fabrics that move with my body.
    Sandalwood, Pachouli, rose & vanilla are sense I like.
    I wear Angel by Thierry Mugler but in the hot summer months it does not smell the same. I also wear Coco Chanel, Euphoria and Prada Ambree. what would be good for the hot humid summer months I am passionate about life November 10, 2012 at 4:16pm Reply

    • sara: You should try almost every reference by Juliette Has a Gun, especially Lady Vengeance, Vengeance Extreme or Citizen Queen (rose + leather). You can also try Rose D’homme by Les Parfums de Rosine or Voleur de Roses by l’Artisan Parfumeur. November 11, 2012 at 3:24pm Reply

  • Ada: For the hot weather and according to your tastes I would recommend Atelier Vanille Insensee, which is a “sheer” vanilla. if you want something with more volume I’ll suggest Rose Boheme or a light patchouli like Nombril Immense by Etat Libre d’Orange November 11, 2012 at 6:54am Reply

    • Suzanna: I agree with that, and I will add that during those times when applying perfume seems “too much,” try to soap. It’s incredibly scented and its fragrance stays on the skin all day (as well as scenting a room). November 11, 2012 at 9:55am Reply

    • Nina Z: You could try Chanel 31 Rue Cambon. It’s lighter amber scent, beautiful and subtle. November 11, 2012 at 11:45am Reply

  • Annia: Does anyone know if the Angel flankers, Angel Violette and Angel Lily are still available? November 11, 2012 at 7:12pm Reply

    • Victoria: Annia, I don’t think so. They were limited editions. November 17, 2012 at 8:53am Reply

  • Amer: I just wanted to say that this is a great still life photograph with modern aesthetics and rococo sensibilities! November 12, 2012 at 3:34am Reply

  • Ana: Hello, this is my first comment but I’m a long time reader of the blog. For years I didn’t wear perfume and to be honest I didn’t even think about, but then I discovered the wonderful world of perfume blogs 🙂 I’m still starting to smell outside of the mainstream lines, and in Portugal we don’t have access to a lot of niche brands, so all of this is relatively new to me. So far I know that I love vanilla, benzoin, and other woods and spices, when done lightly. The one perfume that I smelled and I could see myself wearing daily is “Lumiere Blanche” by Olfactive Studio, but unfortunately on me it lasts around 30 minutes and then is gone. Can you recommend me something along the same lines but with a little more longevity? November 12, 2012 at 5:34am Reply

    • sara: Mohur by Neela Vermeire Creations will probably be your “cup of tea”. You can visit their website and order some samples November 12, 2012 at 12:51pm Reply

    • Victoria: Ana, welcome! 🙂
      Have you tried Kenzo Jungle L’Elephant? Lumiere Blanche was based on the same idea, but Kenzo is richer and darker. And it definitely has more longevity. November 17, 2012 at 3:33pm Reply

  • Diana: my Signature perfume is “narciso Rodriguez for her EDT” and I looooove it 😀
    top and Middle Notes of Jasmin Noir is wonderful for me but on basenote it`s musulline and mmmmm 🙁
    Idole by Armani have a soft and clean note of Ginger and like it too 🙂

    I Like: Musc (my love), Almond ,Jasmin , Lilac, Vanilla , Pear, Saffron , Tonka Bean, Gardenia, Vetiver , Peony , Almond Blossom , Frangipani , Ylang-Ylang , Watery Violet , Cedar Wood, Green Tea , Bitter Orange , Ginger , Cardamom , Green and Watery Notes , Marine Notes, pink Pepper , mango , peach , cacao, cypress, erthy and dusty notes, mossy notes , Dark Notes , Icy and bitter notes for Summer

    I hate : Mimosa , Orris , Powdery scents, Sweet or Sugery Chocolate , Caramel, Praline , Heliotrope , Soapy Scents, Litchi , Tuberose, Orris Root , patchouli

    You can see my fragrances here :

    I want 2 fragrances for summer and winter. an erthy-dusty-Dark-powerful for winter but femmine!
    and for Summer I`Dont Know 🙂

    Thank youuuuuu 😀 November 14, 2012 at 7:48am Reply

    • Ada: Have you tried Jo Malone fragrances? I think you’ll find a lot of choices in their collection. They work with a lot of fresh, watery florals and they have an interesting tea series. Also for a fan of musk I think Mure et Musc by L’Artisan, Serge Lutens Clair de Musc, Annick Goutal Musc Nomade would work for summer, and of course there’s Kiehl’s Original Musk that I think works all year round. November 15, 2012 at 8:23am Reply

      • Diana: No I don`t try 🙁 unfortunately I can`t find some perfumes in my country like Niche fragrance :(((

        have you any recommendation for usual perfumes and brands? for summer and winter?

        and Thank you again 🙂 November 15, 2012 at 5:54pm Reply

        • Ada: I think Lovely by Sarah Jessica Parker and Idylle by Guerlain would be good choices since they are both very pretty musky florals in the style of Narciso Rodriguez for her and they are mainstream fragrances as well. If you want fresh and aquatic florals for hot climates try Omnia Crystaline by Bulgari or Chanel Chance tendre November 16, 2012 at 6:15am Reply

          • Diana: Thank you sooo much 🙂 November 17, 2012 at 3:25pm Reply

    • Victoria: Have you tried Coco Noir or Guerlain La Petite Robe Noire? They might be very interesting winter fragrances for you. They are gourmand, but have enough woods not to be too sugary-sweet. Coco Noir especially is quite musky, and since you love these notes, it might fit the bill.

      Marc Jacobs Daisy Eau So Fresh or Chloe L’Eau might be your summer choices. Again, very nicely done and effervescent enough not to be overwhelming on a hot day. November 17, 2012 at 3:32pm Reply

      • Julie: Thank you so much. I will try all that you recommended. It’s great after reading your post & Article , I wake up and think, what fragrance shall I wear today. November 17, 2012 at 7:41pm Reply

  • Rina: Hi All,

    It’s could either be the easiest or the hardest, depending on your frame of reference…

    I’ve fallen in deep lust with, of all things, a body lotion that I must find as a fragrance. If anyone is familiar with the Shea Moisture line of products, they make a body lotion and wash with raw Shea Butter, Frankincense and Myrrh. It is spicy and warm and comforting and I’ve taken to applying it before bed and sleep like a baby! Unfortunately, the wash and lotion don’t last as long as I’d like, which is why I’m looking for a scent that smells like it.

    With the wealth of information we have here, can anyone suggest something for me? Yes, I’m a BWF girl, but this (to me) is the perfect cold weather comfort scent.

    Thanks in advance!! November 16, 2012 at 9:21pm Reply

    • Victoria: Rina, I haven’t smelled that body lotion, but Czech & Speake has a Frankincense & Myrrh fragrance. For incense (frankincense), I also love Armani Prive Bois d’Encens (the only one in the collection that’s worth the price), Comme des Garcons Avignon. November 17, 2012 at 8:59am Reply

      • Rina: Thanks Victoria! I tried 3 different places yesterday looking for the Armani and CdG and not even Neiman’s carried them! Off to the web…XOXO! November 19, 2012 at 12:40pm Reply

    • RVB: Hi Rina-I share your love for the Shea Moisture lotion.The smell is intoxicating.The closest I’ve found to replicating is Andy Tauer’s L’Air du Desert Marocain especially in the drydown.Although myrrh is not used it has a very warm and dry incense drydown.The frankincense combines with cedar,vetiver and ambergris to create Andy’s signature base the “Tauerade”.Just be patient for the drydown! November 20, 2012 at 8:10pm Reply

      • Rina: Thanks RVB! I was afraid I was the only one who knew what I was referring to, LOL! Is it hard to find? Off to Google! Thanks again, I’ve become a bit obsessed over it 😉 November 20, 2012 at 8:59pm Reply

        • RVB: Hi Rina.You can buy or sample then from Andy Tauer’s website(he has a great sample program) or from luck! November 20, 2012 at 9:23pm Reply

          • Rina: Yep, I’ve been playing on Luckyscent all day. They have the CdG that V suggested too and they have a storefront not to far from me! The Armani Prive is proving to be elusive or prohibitively expensive as a sample, so I’ll try these two and report back! May need a w/e road trip… November 20, 2012 at 9:27pm Reply

            • Rina: Uh, oh…they have both in store, will make me samples and want me to bring the lotion with me. This could be BAD! November 20, 2012 at 9:50pm Reply

              • RVB: Haha! Good luck and let us know how it goes! November 20, 2012 at 10:10pm Reply

  • Jennifer: I would love some recommendations. My signature scent for the last few years is “Petite Cherie” by Annik Goutal. My only gripe is that it fades really really quickly on me. I also love Laura Mercier’s Ambre Vanille scent but it’s only available in souffle body cream, bath milk and body scrub. I’m really into coconut scents now too….
    Not a fan of clean, powdery scents , nor of scents that are very spicy.
    I appreciate your opinions and time! November 20, 2012 at 5:02pm Reply

    • Victoria: This thread has already quieted down, so when we hold our Recommend me a Perfume again next week, I will move your comment there. Meanwhile, here are a couple of my own suggestions: if you like pear, try Hermes Un Jardin sur le Toit, which has a delicious pear-apple note. Also, if you like coconut and fruity notes and can find Parfums de Nicolai near you, Just Une Reve is a beautiful tropical floral with a twist of apricot and coconut. November 21, 2012 at 6:23am Reply

  • Jessica: Hello Ladies,
    I am a pale and rosy brunette with pale green eyes. I have a figure that gets noticed and I tend to wear jewel tones with charcoals or black. My jewelry and makeup are usually understated.
    I currently wear Versace Bright Crystal, which makes me feel sexy and empowered; Coco Mlle, which I wear casually and am always complemented on; and YSL Cinema, which smells amazing on me but I feel is too powerful to wear anytime except Winter. I used to wear the Ralph Lauren perfume in the red bottle when I was younger and even now the smell makes me happy, although I won’t wear it anymore.
    My favorite natural scents are citrus blossoms, coconut (this scent reminds me of childhood), bergamont, and sandalwood.
    I truly detest Eternity, Poison, and patchouli. I prefer an intimate sillage that extends no more than about a foot from me. My chemistry is highly acidic.
    I have no idea what any of this means, but I want to become more knowledgable and worldly about perfume. Please help me find my next favorite! November 21, 2012 at 2:52am Reply

    • Victoria: As I mentioned to Jennifer above, this thread has already quieted down, so when we hold our Recommend me a Perfume again next week, I will move your comment there.

      Have you tried Coco Noir? If you like Coco Mlle and would like something elegant, Coco Noir might be a good choice. Viktor & Rolf Flowerbomb is another option that comes to mind. And Jo Malone Pomegranate Noir.

      If you want to try something niche, then I would recommend Serge Lutens Fleurs de Citronnier. It has a beautiful lemon blossom/orange blossom note and it can be a great perfume for the spring-summer. November 21, 2012 at 6:26am Reply

      • Jessica: Thank you so much! I am new to this, and new to the site. It’s all a little scary but I adore perfume so much. You’ve actually inspired me to wear it to bed (Chanel Chance tonight), which would have felt wasteful and too self indulgent to me before. Thank you!
        Oh, I’ve always wondered about this. do you recommend any techniques to perfume laundry? It never made sense to me to wear a beautiful, delicate fragrance if all one can smell is Tide.

        Thank you! November 30, 2012 at 3:55am Reply

        • Victoria: I’m so glad! 🙂 At night you only need a tiny amount of perfume, and it’s so enjoyable! Being relaxed, having good dreams and getting a good rest is a necessity, and if some scent helps, then it’s not at all wasteful. Enjoy it!

          I’ve experimented with perfuming laundry, but if you use Tide, it’s hard to compete with it. Laundry detergents are designed with special ingredients–some that dissolve in water, others that will remain behind on the clothes. Some Tide products contain tiny capsules that release scent when the clothes are dry. The best way to perfume sheets is to spray them with some diluted rosewater before you go to bed. For clothes, just mist perfume you want to wear over them. Perfume lasts really well on fabric! Just be careful with delicate fabrics like silks, chiffons, white linens, etc., because they can stain. November 30, 2012 at 4:04am Reply

          • Jessica: I just wanted to let you know that I got a package of samples tonight and the first one I tried was the Coco Noir. I am in heaven! Perfect. It’s rather masculine on me, mostly sandlewood and musk but the rose waves in every once in a while. Thank you for the beautiful recommendation, I can hardly wait to try the rest! 😉 December 6, 2012 at 11:05pm Reply

  • Clematis: Please recommend a perfume. In the past I have worn Mitsuko & Bal a Versailles. My mother started wearing them, which was fine, but I needed something different. Have been wearing Samsara for years but eventually couldn’t notice it on myself. I’m at a loss. The perfume counter intimidates me. Any ideas? Thank you. Clematis December 3, 2012 at 8:03pm Reply

    I used to wear Donna Karan Black Cashmere and I can’t get it anymore. So now I wear Versace Crystal Noir. What perfume do you recommend for me to try? July 17, 2018 at 1:08pm Reply

  • Virginia Schutt: I wear Estée Lauder Modern Muse Le Rouge, but it has been discontinued. Can you suggest a comparable perfume? I am on the last of my travel size bottle and starting to panic!! July 28, 2023 at 7:47pm Reply

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