Recommend Me a Perfume : September 2019

Are you looking for a new fragrance? Our “Recommend Me a Perfume” thread is open this week. You can use this space to find perfume recommendations, to share your discoveries and favorite scents, and to ask any questions about scents, aromas and flavors.

How does it work: 1. Please post your requests or questions as comments here. You can also use this space to ask any fragrance related questions. To receive recommendations that are better tailored to your tastes, you can include details on what you like and don’t like, your signature perfumes, and your budget. And please let us know what you end up sampling. 2. Then please check the thread to see if there are other requests you can answer. Your responses are really valuable for navigating the big and sometimes confusing world of perfume, so let’s help each other!

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

Photography by Bois de Jasmin

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278 Comments

  • Tourmaline: Dear Readers,

    I find it curious that, although vanilla in perfumery is a rich ingredient, adding sweetness, warmth, depth and lasting power to fragrances, vanilla as a flavour in cooking is considered rather bland. The term “vanilla” is often used to describe something as ordinary or standard. But then, I suppose this very ordinariness is what makes the vanilla flavour so versatile, as in vanilla ice cream. The same could probably be said of vanilla in perfumery; it is ubiquitous. However, I find it interesting that the gulf between vanilla as a fragrance and vanilla as a flavour is rather wide. What do others think?

    With kind regards,
    Tourmaline September 23, 2019 at 7:36am Reply

    • OnWingsofSaffron: I‘m not sure whether I agree completely, Tourmaline. Perhaps vanillin, and/or liquid vanilla essence is bland. But say a crème bavaroise made with a real vanilla bean—gosh that‘s something completely different!
      Perhaps the blandness comes from over-usage with cheap vanilla ersatz? September 23, 2019 at 12:10pm Reply

      • Tourmaline: Hi OnWingsofSaffron,

        I see your point. It is true that I have limited experience of high quality desserts with vanilla. For example, unfortunately, I have never sampled a crème brûlée. I should do a little cooking with vanilla beans myself – cheaper than going to a fine restaurant!

        With kind regards,
        Tourmaline September 23, 2019 at 10:22pm Reply

    • irem: I was thinking about vanilla in fragrance yesterday, and I decided that I mostly do not like vanilla. To me, vanilla in fragrance is easy, safe, one-dimensional.
      There is also Shalimar of course, to die for – especially the extrait. But then, Shalimar is not (only) vanilla. The bergamot in the opening, the rich heart notes, the vanilla modulators in the base (tonka, opoponax), and the animalic notes (civet?) make Shalimar anything but “vanilla”.
      After deciding that I do not like vanilla, and putting on some Shalimar Extrait I was reminded of Beaux: “When I use vanilla, I get crème caramel. When Jacques uses vanilla, he gets Shalimar.”
      Maybe that is the problem? We need more Jacques Guerlains. September 23, 2019 at 12:37pm Reply

      • OnWingsofSaffron: I guess you’re right: one needs the right hand to make a sublime vanilla brew. And if that is the case, I’d prefer a person showered in Un Bois de Vanille by Serge Lutens, or perhaps Vanille Exquise by Goutal any time over a heavy-metal, head-banging ambroxan-fest! September 23, 2019 at 1:23pm Reply

      • Klaas: That is a fantastic quote! September 23, 2019 at 1:37pm Reply

      • Tourmaline: Hi Irem,

        Nobody could argue against more Jacques Guerlains! But there are literally hundreds of other wonderful fragrances containing vanilla. Just a few of them are – L’Heure Bleue, Vol de Nuit, Habit Rouge, Youth Dew, Coco, Opium, Femme, Bal à Versailles, Trésor and Poison. Perhaps you like one or more of these.

        With kind regards,
        Tourmaline September 23, 2019 at 10:26pm Reply

    • Aurora: Hello Tourmaline: I find your question iteresting. Actually, our view of vanilla as a bit insipid might be a western one. In Mauritius where vanilla is cultivated it is used in savoury dishes too like stews and curries etc as a valuable addition to hot dishes so there is more to the vanilla flavor. September 23, 2019 at 12:39pm Reply

      • Aurora: interesting, sorry for the typo. September 23, 2019 at 12:44pm Reply

        • Tourmaline: Hi Aurora,

          That is very interesting, You are probably right about the view of vanilla as insipid being a western one. I would love to try vanilla in savoury dishes.

          With kind regards,
          Tourmaline September 23, 2019 at 10:28pm Reply

    • John Luna: Great question… Vanilla’s history is the stuff of exotica (read that myth about the princess if you don’t know it already) but it has entered the mainstream via the cookies and custards of the kitchen. I think one of the Guerlain perfumers once said something about not being able to make a good fragrance without vanilla, probably for functional reasons as much as aesthetic ones. Many years ago, I found Pour un Homme de Caron (correction: it found me: it has been more or less my signature since), and, trying to better understand why I liked something that seemed to provoke very varying responses online, I read up on the scent. One good review cited an ‘inedible vanilla’ in the scent profile, and another drew distinctions between Caron’s use of vanilla and the dry, smoky woody vanilla in Guerlain’s Habit Rouge. This got me thinking, as did writing citing the marrying of ‘a lick’ of civet with vanilla (a minor factor in both of those perfumes, and conversely also in Kouros, where a functional but almost hidden vanilla supports a heaping wallop of civetone.) I think vanilla can do a lot of things… In the Caron (which I have on today), it’s sensual but also surprisingly savoury, grounded in musks and maybe a hint of sage. I’m always surprised by how ‘brown’ this note seems after the keen green-violet brightness of the lavender, and its success here (it is almost too much) never ceases to amaze me. Maybe it’s a matter of finding uses of vanilla that transcend the ordinary via skillful blending? I guess the same might well be said of almost any note… September 23, 2019 at 1:22pm Reply

      • Tourmaline: Hi John,

        Thanks for your interesting comment. I googled the myth and read it with interest, as I hadn’t heard it before. Yes, it seems that a huge number of fine fragrances contain some amount of vanilla. I am intrigued by the notion of an “inedible vanilla” note. I like Habit Rouge; although it is “technically” for men, I wear it sometimes. And “a lick” of civet combined with vanilla sounds rich and heavenly.

        I think you are right about vanilla performing different functions in different fragrances. It is versatile indeed.

        Yes, as I said to Irem, my experience of fine vanilla recipes is limited. Such recipes would probably involve the skillful blending to which you refer.

        With kind regards,
        Tourmaline September 23, 2019 at 10:33pm Reply

        • Meredith: Looking for something similar to Miller Harris’ Fleurs de Sel which they no longer produce. Any ideas? November 17, 2019 at 1:10pm Reply

          • Tourmaline: Hi Meredith,

            You might want to re-post your comment in the latest “Recommend Me a Perfume” thread. Victoria commenced it on 26 October.

            Enter your comment into the box at the very end of that thread, under “What do you think?”.

            You will get many more responses.

            With kind regards,
            Tourmaline November 17, 2019 at 2:16pm Reply

    • Karen A: Vanilla bean added to fruit when making jams is incredible! Especially plum and peach. I love love love vanilla and in recipes where 1 teaspoon is called for always use 1 tablespoon!

      In one of those silly rom-com movies, Catherine Zeta-Jones was a chef and said something like, “I can’t tell if Madagascar vanilla was used but I can tell when it wasn’t.”

      I keep empty vanilla bottles and vanilla bean containers for eons, smelling them whenever I want to be inspired while baking or cooking!

      Vanilla based fragrances may not be high on my list, but love the roundness and depth it can add.

      Fun comments and great topic! September 24, 2019 at 7:49am Reply

      • Tourmaline: Hi Karen,

        Like you, I love vanilla, and often add a little more than required to recipes, but not as much as you! I have never made jam, mainly because I live in a unit and don’t have any fruit trees. It must be fun, though, and worth the effort.

        I remember the film you mentioned – “No Reservations”; for its type, it was quite good.
        In Australia, the vanilla I use – Queen vanilla essence – is now sold in hard plastic bottles, rather than the old glass ones I loved. No doubt there are other brands that still sell it in glass – perhaps a brand using Madagascar vanilla!

        I kept a range of items from my late mother’s pantry, including her large, half-full bottle of Queen vanilla essence and several bottles of food colourings, silver cachous and so on. Along with her Gripstand mixing bowl and numerous other cooking utensils, I photographed them for a ring-binder that I put together of her old recipes.

        Vanilla is certainly an interesting topic!

        With kind regards,
        Tourmaline September 24, 2019 at 9:26am Reply

        • Karen A: How wonderful you have some of your mother’s everyday kitchen things!

          A few years ago I went to a food convention; there were quite a few small vanilla co-ops.

          And in Virginia there is an orchid nursery, it was there that I saw the orchid which produces the vanilla bean. It is incredibly labor intensive and is all done by hand – thus explaining the high cost of vanilla beans. Fascinating process though! September 24, 2019 at 3:47pm Reply

          • Tourmaline: Hi Karen,

            A vanilla co-op – what a great idea! And seeing the vanilla orchid at first hand and learning about the process of creating vanilla beans as we know them, would have been wonderful.

            With kind regards,
            Tourmaline September 25, 2019 at 9:06am Reply

    • Sebastian: First off, I don’t agree with your assessment of vanilla as bland. Vanilla can be quite exciting in food. And my favorite desert must be crème brûlée.

      The perceived blandness of vanilla ice cream may have to do with the fact that casein and whey proteins lead to a decrease of vanillin flavor perception [1] and that higher milk fat concentration leads to a decrease of free vanillin [2].

      Now, I hate vanilla in perfumes. A vanillic dry-down is reason enough for me to avoid a fragrance. But that is just personal preference. I dislike gourmand perfumes in general, and vanilla is mostly used in gourmands, orientals, and lots of stuff targeted at teenagers. Not good for reputation.

      The notion of “inedible vanilla” is therefore very interesting to me. I must go and revisit Habit Rouge.

      Vanilla used to be perceived as “sexy”, but that notion seems to be gone (does anyone still think of Shalimar as sexy? I certainly don’t. Sultry, but not sexy.)

      Finally,vanillic notes often do not result from the direct use of vanillin, but often come from other materials, which increases their complexity. For example, there is guiac Wood, which is dark and just a bit smoky, and tonka bean. In high-end women’s perfumes they tend to be very smooth and increase longevity, especially together with ambery materials. (This formula has been overdone to death. Everytime I smell a vanilla-amber-musk drydown I fall asleep immediately for boredom.)

      Interesting topic. Thanks for bringing it up.

      [1] https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0022030291784774
      [2] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/9436093 September 24, 2019 at 4:31pm Reply

      • Tourmaline: Hi Sebastian,

        Thank you for your reply.

        To be clear, I didn’t assess vanilla as bland, I said that, as a flavour, it was “considered” bland. I think it adds something wonderful, almost magical, to a flavour mix, and I have no doubt that there are recipes in which it is emphasized and where it shines. For example, in crème brûlée, which, as I mentioned to OnWingsofSaffron, I have never tasted.

        The perceived blandness of vanilla ice cream might well be partly due to the two factors you mentioned. (Thanks for the references.) I would add that I have heard that the coldness of ice cream numbs the tongue to some extent (this makes intuitive sense) and that this is the reason so much sugar is usually added, so that the sweetness can be tasted. I’m sure the cold numbs the tongue to other ice cream flavours too, although of course the nose is very much involved in tasting as well.

        Do you really hate all vanilla in perfumes, or only those in which it is a major note? So very many fragrances contain at least some amount of vanilla. Take the perfumes I listed to Irem, for example: L’Heure Bleue, Vol de Nuit, Habit Rouge, Youth Dew, Coco, Opium, Femme, Bal à Versailles, Trésor and Poison. To that list, I could add Jicky, Nahéma, Chamade, Samsara, Femme, Tocade, Chanel No 5, Allure, Égoïste, Poison, Dune, Bellodgia, LouLou, Arpège, Ombre Rose, Ysatis, Lipstick Rose, Lost Cherry, Eau Duelle, and Ambre Sultan. I could go on, and on, and on… Do you really dislike all of these scents?

        I have to confess that I do still find Shalimar sexy; perhaps I’m just old-fashioned!

        Your observation about vanillic notes resulting from other materials was interesting. Are you a perfumer, or perhaps a chemist?

        With kind regards,
        Tourmaline September 25, 2019 at 6:10am Reply

        • Sebastian: Hi Tourmaline,

          to address your last question first, no I’m neither a perfumer nor a chemist, just an interested layman. Please take any factual claim of mine with a grain of salt.

          The point about coldness numbing your tongue, and therefore your taste of sweetness, is probably true. Just think of soft drinks or cocktails as other examples. However, this doesn’t necessarily apply to perception of aromas for which the receptors sit elsewhere.

          Now on to cooking: I’m sorry I misrepresented your views. If you really want to experiment with vanilla, you don’t need to limit yourself to sweet stuff. I can say that shrimp, lobster, scallops etc. and many kinds of fish such as salmon can taste great accompanied by vanilla. You can also experiment with ingredients that have a certain sweetness of themselves, such as asparagus, peas, sweet potato. Even sweetbread or foie-gras work well with it.

          Looking at the list of perfumes you posted, I must admit that I really dislike most of them. Some I don’t know. Some I positively hate. Exceptions that I love are for example Chamade, which isn’t sweet in spite of the vanilla, and Arpège, which as I remember it has only a tinge of vanilla, just a hint of it, doesn’t it? Some I used to like, in particular I did wear Égoïste when I was young. Nowadays I probably couldn’t stand it. Not only vanilla, but also cinnamon, I am sure it would be terrible to me now. I have never retried it so as not to spoil fond memories. I find it strange how these memories of a scent I once loved mingle with what I imagine about experiencing it today. It’s quite tantalizing!

          Cheers,
          Sebastian September 25, 2019 at 7:10am Reply

          • Tourmaline: Hi Sebastian,

            Please see Tamasin’s comment below.

            Regards,
            Tourmaline September 27, 2019 at 9:05am Reply

        • Sebastian: Just for the record, I learned that tidbit about guiac wood from Mark St. Marie, the perfumer who owns The World in Scents. An excellent house which I urge everyone to investigate. Exceedingly high-quality modern perfumes with a vintage vibe. Mark is a wonderful person, too. For starters, there is this overview by Wafts from the Loft on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hnFowcon0ko September 25, 2019 at 1:34pm Reply

          • Danica: I agree about Mark. St. Marie’s perfumes, they are excellent and he uses tons of naturals. He knows a lot about natural materials and in a casual email exchange took it upon himself to send me osmanthus absolute simply so I could understand its complexity. Everyone should sample them–to my recollection several are an homage to those forgotten chypre and tobacco giants of the 70s. September 26, 2019 at 1:43am Reply

          • Tourmaline: Hi Sebastian,

            I agree that I can explore the use of vanilla in savoury recipes, as suggested by Aurora. I love seafood, so your suggestions are intriguing. Given how linked our senses of taste and smell are, and given your apparent appreciation of vanilla in cooking, it is curious to me that you don’t like vanilla in fragrances. Just saying!

            Arpège might well have only a small amount of vanilla, but this is part of the point I’m making. An enormous number of fragrances contain some amount of vanilla, and even those with just a tiny amount simply wouldn’t smell the same without it; such is its power.

            Perhaps it might be a bad idea for you to smell Égoïste today, but I doubt that doing so would spoil fond memories. On the other hand, it might be illuminating for you to do so; perhaps you would still like it, just as you like Chamade.

            I must explore The World in Scents.

            With kind regards,
            Tourmaline September 26, 2019 at 4:50am Reply

      • Tami: Thank you for the fascinating comment.

        I love to eat vanilla-based desserts (and vanilla ice cream is far from “plain vanilla,” when done well)—But in general, vanilla-based perfumes let me down. I would rather dab a bit of Nielsen-Massey on my pulse points!

        I will say, I once had a vanilla-cinnamon body lotion that I really enjoyed. But vanilla and cinnamon were true ingredients; it was a rather savory, woody scent. Warm and inviting, and quite adult compared to the vanilla lotions around in my younger years. September 30, 2019 at 12:30am Reply

        • Tourmaline: Hi Tami,

          Your comment might have been for Sebastian, but I thought I’d chirp in.

          You’ve made me think that I should try making a good vanilla bean ice cream myself sometime.

          The lotion you mentioned sounds lovely; I find that woods can really help to reign in or balance a vanilla fragrance, to ensure that it doesn’t become sickly sweet.

          With kind regards,
          Tourmaline October 7, 2019 at 10:31am Reply

          • Tami: Sorry for the long delayed response! A homemade vanilla bean ice cream sounds amazing. I love using Nielsen Massey vanilla bean paste when I bake—lovely flecks of vanilla and a strong vanilla flavor! (Note, it does have some sugar in it.) I’m always tempted to dab a bit behind my ears. 🤣 October 26, 2019 at 12:48pm Reply

    • Tamasin: Have you tried Ormonde Jayne’s Vanille d’Iris? The name put me off for a year before I tried it. But it’s the rich leathery skin of the vanilla pod used in this perfume. Not sickly sweetness at all! It’s really is incredibly deep bass voice rather than falsetto squeak. September 27, 2019 at 5:05am Reply

  • Charlotte Barrow: Hello!

    I’m looking for a birthday gift for a guy I’ve been dating for 5 months (it’s not ’til November so I have some time). He currently wears CK One – which he’s worn since he was in his early 20s – and Eau des Baux by L’Occitane en Provence, because his dad wore it. I gave him a sample of Hermes Eau d’Orange Verte which he says he likes, but I’ve never noticed him wearing it.

    What would you recommend as a gift for a British man in his mid-30s who doesn’t know a lot about fragrance (price point: inexpensive to mid range)? I prefer unisex to typically ‘masculine’ and suspect he does too; nothing in the ‘sporty’ realm. I find both of the colognes he wears now sexy on him, but I want to help open his eyes to the wide range of niche/quality fragrance out there.

    Also, what are people’s thoughts generally on gifting fragrance? Is it a good/bad idea?

    Thanks in advance 🙂 September 23, 2019 at 8:04am Reply

    • Tourmaline: Hi Charlotte,

      I don’t know enough about men’s fragrances to offer suggestions for your friend; however I do have a view about gifting. Many readers of Bois de Jasmin would know more about fragrance in general and what is available (or at least how to find what is available) than the average person and would therefore be in a better position to gift fragrance.

      Also, even if the recipient did not particularly like the scent, the gift might bring them a step closer to identifying a fragrance that did suit. At least, it might be helpful if the recipient were, at some stage, to discuss their fragrance preferences and experiences with a perfumista, or with a vendor who genuinely wanted to assist, rather than being under pressure to sell particular fragrances.

      Also, preferences can change and develop over time, so today’s poison might be tomorrow’s elixir.

      With kind regards,
      Tourmaline September 23, 2019 at 8:31am Reply

      • Charlotte Barrow: Thanks Tourmaline, I agree.

        I also like your thoughts on vanilla in the thread above – very interesting observation! September 23, 2019 at 8:59am Reply

        • Tourmaline: Hi Charlotte,

          Many thanks. In relation to choosing a scent for your friend, I had another idea. If you were ever out with him near a decent perfume outlet, you might suggest that he duck in with you and sample a couple of fragrances that you thought he might like. You could explain it in terms of your strong interest in perfumery – including fragrances for men.

          With kind regards,
          Tourmaline September 23, 2019 at 10:34pm Reply

          • Charlotte Barrow: Great suggestion Tourmaline, maybe I can ‘casually’ take him past Harrods’ perfume hall next time we’re in town! September 24, 2019 at 5:29am Reply

            • Tourmaline: Indeed! September 24, 2019 at 9:29am Reply

      • Anne: Hello,
        Would appreciate receiving recommendations for a pure lily of the valley fragrance. Thanks for your guidance. September 23, 2019 at 10:51am Reply

        • Charlotte Barrow: Hi Anne, you might want to post this again as a separate query as it seems to have fallen under the responses to my post, so might be overlooked! September 23, 2019 at 1:42pm Reply

          • Ulrika: Hello Charlotte, what about Clair de musc by Serge Lutens? I think that he might like it. Armani White would have been worth a try, too – but unfortunately it is discontinued. September 23, 2019 at 2:07pm Reply

            • Charlotte Barrow: Hi Ulrika, thanks for your suggestion! I’m intrigued to hear why you chose Clair de Musc? A friend’s sister wears it and it is indeed beautiful. September 24, 2019 at 5:26am Reply

              • Ulrika: Hello Charlotte, because of its effortless, no-nonsense allure. Like CK One it is absolutely wearable for any gender, very clean, uncomplicated, yet elegant.
                But it is indeed tricky to choose a fragrance for another person. The suggestion to give your friend some samples to try and choose from is quite sensible. September 24, 2019 at 10:23am Reply

                • Charlotte Barrow: Thanks Ulrika, you’ve made me want to revisit it! September 25, 2019 at 5:42am Reply

        • sara: Koto by Shiseido. Not sure how hard it is to find but it’s wonderful. Good luck. September 26, 2019 at 3:10pm Reply

          • Aurora: Such a good recommendationI’m a fan of Koto too, it would smell great on a man, it is rarely mentioned, yes, very difficult to find, I wonder if it’s still sold in Japan. September 28, 2019 at 4:22am Reply

      • Deanna: Hi Tourmaline,
        Hope you are well and enjoying your balcony!
        I would definitely gift a man a perfume that, I selfishly, love.
        Presuming that I would be smelling it on him. So wouldn’t be choosing anything with oud, musk, or patchouli.
        I was very intrigued by a guy on the London Underground wafting something that smelt a bit like Opium, ( not for men though) Would have asked him what it was, but he disappeared onto a train. I was impressed by his taste. September 23, 2019 at 12:00pm Reply

        • Tourmaline: Hi Deanna,

          I am indeed well, and hope you are the same! I am enjoying my balcony, having recently purchased a table and chair set of lacy iron, painted white. The balcony remains devoid of flowers thus far, however. Not only have I been slack, but Amazon has been telling me that the Viola odorata seeds I wanted were unavailable. However, I’ve just checked again, and they are now in stock. I must hop to it!

          Perhaps the guy was in fact wearing Opium. As Victoria has emphasized in the past, the distinction between fragrances for men and women is an artificial one; people can wear what they like. Perhaps you will come across the man again, and have the chance to ask him about the scent!

          With kind regards,
          Tourmaline September 23, 2019 at 10:38pm Reply

        • Tourmaline: P.S.

          I hope that your garden is going well! September 24, 2019 at 4:22am Reply

          • Deanna: Hello Tourmaline!
            Yes my garden is looking fantastic, just as Autumn arrives to put an end to things. I agree with what you say about not having a division between perfumes for men and women. The only thing is that when perfumes are described as being “unisex” they usually lean heavily towards the masculine, or rather the industries boring idea of what is masculine September 24, 2019 at 12:03pm Reply

            • Tourmaline: Hi Deanna,

              I’m glad to hear your garden has been doing well. I think you are right about “unisex” fragrances mainly falling within the more restrictive realm of masculine scents.

              With kind regards,
              Tourmaline September 25, 2019 at 9:28am Reply

    • Anne: How about a jo malone fragrance. It s unisex and smells lovely. The bottles are gorgeous too…. I like black céder wood and juniper, English oak and hazelnut and amber and lavender. Also their lime basil and mandarine is great on a man too. September 23, 2019 at 9:09am Reply

      • Charlotte Barrow: Thanks Anne, I haven’t explored much of the Jo Malone range but I know it’s a British classic; will give your suggestions a try! September 23, 2019 at 1:39pm Reply

        • Keith: I think Jo Malone is a perfect suggestion! The 30ml bottles are very affordable, and the fragrance have distinct personalities, but are never overly strong. I also love the suggestion of English Oak and Hazelnut; that one has been on my list of fragrances to get for a while now! September 26, 2019 at 5:29pm Reply

    • Debby: Hi Charlotte, have you tried the new Gucci, Memoire d’une Odeur? Unisex and good price point. I’m wearing it today and find it delightful. It’s by Alberto Morillas who was responsible for CK One of course.
      My thoughts on gifting fragrance: for some people it’s easy, my mum is very easy to blind buy for and will always welcome it. My husband? Not so much. He likes to smell good but will only tolerate my buying him things up to a point. I get him samples to tempt him, but he wouldn’t like to be bought full bottles.
      Sadly, not everyone is as into it as we are! September 23, 2019 at 12:47pm Reply

      • Charlotte Barrow: Thanks Debby, no I don’t know that Gucci but will give it a try! Excellent suggestion to look for ‘noses’ I already know he likes. September 23, 2019 at 1:45pm Reply

        • Debby: Memoire is very polarising it seems, must be certain noses/skin types that amplify notes, but if it works it is lovely. Also, have you considered the Hermes Jardin series? September 23, 2019 at 5:12pm Reply

          • Charlotte Barrow: Thanks Debby, Un Jardin sur la Lagune is one of my favourites and he always comments favourably when I wear it. The only other one from the collection I’ve tried is Sur le Nil, which I found too sour. Are there any you would particularly recommend? September 24, 2019 at 5:35am Reply

            • Debby: I’ve only tried the same two, Lagune is very nice. For me, Sur le Nil went horribly stuffy on my skin, but I gave my sample to my husband and it smells amazing on him! So maybe try it on your BF, skin chemistry is a strange thing! September 24, 2019 at 7:01pm Reply

              • Charlotte Barrow: Very true, perhaps I should just gift him all of my unloved samples! Or at least have a testing session before I give them away to someone else. September 25, 2019 at 11:14am Reply

                • Sebastian: Did you not say he didn’t know much about fragrance? Why would you give a box of samples to such a person, ones you don’t like to boot? Would this really be something he would appreciate? And what if he chooses the least loved of those samples as his signature scent? I cannot judge at all, I know nothing about it, but this whole thread sometimes sounds to me as if it were more about education than giving a present. Personally, I’d be much more cautious about it. September 25, 2019 at 1:32pm Reply

    • John Luna: Dear Charlotte,

      I have noticed that some companies (Diptyque is a great example of this) not only gift wrap, but include a sample along with the full bottle so that the receiver of the gift can test things out in confidence before opening the package. I also happen to think that Diptyque make some great scents that might match your search… especially as, given that this house is a little pricier than either CK or l”Occitane, this gift could become a sort of ‘special occasion/date’ kind of fragrance for him. Off the top, I’d certainly suggest the popular Volutes, a warm, woody honey-tobacco that will remind you both of Eau des Baux but with finer materials and orchestration. Tam Dao is also a house favourite that might pick up some of the threads of the CK. I have not personally smelled the new Eau de Parfum version of either of these, but based on side-by-side comparisons I’ve made of other EDT/EDP formulations in the line (Philosykos and Vetyverio) I’d say that the brand has a great sense of how to make an EDP that acts like an extrait should, while striking a balance between repeating the familiar and inventing something new; performances of the EDP’s also seem great. While I have so far shied away from anything from Diptyque for myself (I’m still too hung up on the classic Guerlains and Carons, and shy away from the expense), I think they do a great job with materials and presentation, and, given the English tendency to avoid overstatement, I think the performance profile of many Diptyque products (well-metered projection and good longevity), would leave your man in good hands. My wife is not a ‘perfume’ person really, but I’ve managed to get her interested in Philosykos and will be purchasing a bottle of the EDP (another birthday) soon. Good luck! September 23, 2019 at 1:06pm Reply

      • Charlotte Barrow: Hi John, thanks for this, great suggestion to look at ‘sample included’ options and Diptyque is another house I’ve been meaning to explore further. I love Tam Dao and Vetyverio; will try Volutes. I know Diptyque also does a range of scented products that might be fun to explore.

        Hope your wife enjoys her Philosykos – a modern classic! September 23, 2019 at 1:58pm Reply

    • kat: I never gift an unknown fragrance because that’s very tricky to get right. When I know someone’s favorite scents I might gift them something from that line (soap, bodylotion etc.). But if you want him to expand his scent universe why not go with a sample set. Atelier Cologne does some great ones at a reasonable price, or mabye Penhaligon’s since he’s a Brit 😉 September 23, 2019 at 1:13pm Reply

      • Charlotte Barrow: Great suggestion, thanks Kat. Then if he doesn’t like any of the samples, I can reclaim them for myself 😉 September 23, 2019 at 1:59pm Reply

        • kat: Exactly – it’s a win-win! September 23, 2019 at 4:16pm Reply

    • Domestic Goblin: Hello Charlotte,

      It depends on what your budget is. Top end I would suggest Sartorial by Penhaligons. At the more affordable end, I would suggest 4711 by Mäurer & Wirtz.

      Domestic Goblin. September 23, 2019 at 2:00pm Reply

      • Charlotte Barrow: Thanks, I was thinking he might like some of Penhaligon’s Trade Routes collection; I’ve been enjoying a sample of Lothair and Bertrand Duchaufour is one of my favourite noses. I haven’t tried Sartorial so will look for it. I’m not familiar with Maurer & Wirtz; is it widely available? September 24, 2019 at 5:44am Reply

        • Domestic Goblin: Hi Charlotte, 4711 by Maurer & Wirtz is widely available in Boots. September 24, 2019 at 11:50am Reply

    • Ben: I think a nice option here is to include him in the process by getting him a number of samples (5 or 6). Most scent stores will be able to take the info you’ve provided here and recommend a few possibilities. Then he can try each sample out, one day at a time, and see how he gets on with each of them before making a final decision. It makes the whole experience quite fun too when someone gets to sit with one scent all day and experience how it changes. September 24, 2019 at 8:06am Reply

      • Ben: Oops, forgot to add – I’d recommend samples from different houses, rather than just one. September 24, 2019 at 8:07am Reply

      • Charlotte Barrow: Thanks Ben, I like the suggestion of designing my own custom sample pack for him! At least that way if he falls in love with any of them, I’m guaranteed to like his choice 🙂 September 24, 2019 at 8:48am Reply

    • Cybele: maybe he would enjoy Voyage by Hermes coming from CK1 September 24, 2019 at 4:06pm Reply

    • Sebastian: Perhaps Dior Sauvage? That is an easy scent to recommend, especially for someone not so into perfumery. It’s clean but warm, ending sweetly woody. Relaxed and versatile. Not sporty, but also not portly, and very suitable for someone in his thirties.

      With regard to the general topic of gifting perfume, I would never gift perfumes to people whom I do not know very well. I need to know a lot about what they like and dislike, not only scent-wise, but with regard to life-style and activities, too.

      I would also be hesitant to gift perfume to someone who is in a relationship. First, it’s difficult because the scent would have to appeal to both of them, second, it might well be considered intrusive.

      Similarly, in my culture a heterosexual man gifting perfume to a woman could imply a suggestion of intimacy or an element of courtship that might be unwelcome.

      On the other hand, involving the candidate in the process is a different kind of thing. No surprise and entirely harmless. Not something I’d do with someone I have just started to date 🙂

      If the other person has no previous interest or experience in perfume, it might work best to interest them in the different ways that you yourself smell! Then work from that. September 24, 2019 at 5:14pm Reply

    • Laura: Hi Charlotte,
      Some weeks ago a colleague of mine asked me about a potent, versatile, youngish, woody men fragrance. Finally, we’ ve picked Mr Burberry EdP. I think it suits him very well. It is fresh and spicy, woody, young yet elegant and versatile. It is not expensive at all. I suggest you to give it a try. September 28, 2019 at 3:00am Reply

  • Sandra: I am looking for a fall fragrance with lots of sillage. I like Omnia for fall (the brown bottle) but its too quiet and close to the skin.
    I also like big white florals, but I save them for the summer.
    I don’t want to break the bank, so something that is at a moderate price point. September 23, 2019 at 9:04am Reply

    • AnnieA: @Sandra, I will suggest a friend’s second-favourite scent after Omnia: Andy Tauer’s L’Air du desert marocain. Sounds right for fall. September 23, 2019 at 9:16pm Reply

    • Neva: Hi Sandra, I suggest Yves Saint Laurent Nu EdT. It’s spicy, woody and has a good sillage. September 26, 2019 at 3:47pm Reply

  • lina: So oud Asmar – honey, warmth, amber, East.. September 23, 2019 at 9:15am Reply

  • Rachel: I am looking to bring a new fragrance to Tuscany with me in November. I am not a huge floral fan. I like the classics, like Chanel no 19, Shalimar, I want something for day and night not too strong or flowery maybe a little bit sexy. September 23, 2019 at 9:21am Reply

    • Kim: I recently fell in love with Bottega Veneta ‘Eau De Parfum’. A light, smooth suede with pink pepper overtones. This is both sexy and airy, not a lollipop pink/pepper.

      I found it to have good silage and staying power. September 23, 2019 at 11:39am Reply

    • CristinaM: Tuscany in november: leather and amber!!! September 23, 2019 at 2:38pm Reply

    • Karen A: What about another Chanel? 31 Rue de Cambon is my fall fragrance, so beautiful – classic, elegant. Bois des Iles is another Chanel that is stunning. September 24, 2019 at 7:54am Reply

    • spe: Elixir de Merveilles might be nice. Safe travels! September 24, 2019 at 8:50am Reply

    • OnWingsofSaffron: I would suggest Chanel „1957“, white musk accord (8 different musks), aldehydes, bergamot, iris, neroli, cedar, honey, powdery notes. I find it quite compelling. September 26, 2019 at 3:34pm Reply

  • Tami: How about something from Acqua di Parma? (It is Italian, so maybe you’d want to pick it up there?) The Blu Mediterraneo line has a lot of citrusy scents mixed with spice, wood, musk, etc. I like the Mandorlo di Sicilia. Arancia di Capri Is also popular. Acqua di Parma also has a new Yuzu scent, which sounds intriguing (but I haven’t smelled it). September 23, 2019 at 10:26am Reply

  • Matty: @ Tourmaline
    very interesting comments about vanilla. I do like it in a perfume. September 23, 2019 at 10:45am Reply

    • Tourmaline: Hi Matty,

      Thank you. Yes, it’s hard to imagine many fragrances without their vanilla content.

      With kind regards,
      Tourmaline September 23, 2019 at 10:41pm Reply

  • OnWingsofSaffron: Hi, I wd have suggested the Yuzu fragnance from the James Heeley collection, but might be too dear. And if you hadn‘t already given him the Green Orange I‘d have suggested the Hermès Néroli dorée!
    So what about something from the Atelier Cologne range? As a man I really enjoy the modern Jasim Angelique perfume which might be just a tiny bit too much as the fourth scent of your partner. Their citrus scents are great.
    Another suggestion: Pour un Homme by Caron—very sexy and no horrible, mind-numbing aromachemicals. September 23, 2019 at 12:30pm Reply

    • OnWingsofSaffron: @Charlotte Barrow, strangely, my comment slipped right to the end of the line instead of right up there under your question! Sorry! September 23, 2019 at 12:34pm Reply

      • Charlotte Barrow: No problem – easily done! I’m keen to try Caron’s Pour un Homme after John Luna’s earlier response to Tourmaline’s vanilla thread – as an aromatic vanilla it sounds like it could have some similarities to Eau des Baux.

        We seem to have some fragrance loves in common – Jasmin Angelique and Neroli Doree are two of my absolute favourites from my own collection! Perhaps I should do some testing on him 🙂 September 23, 2019 at 2:19pm Reply

        • John Luna: Hi Charlotte,

          There are definite connections between Caron Pour un Homme and Eau des Baux (which my son wears often), notably in the the vanilla musk base that in both seems to have a functional touch of cedarwood. The key with the Caron is that you must love lavender… the initial hit actually has a bit of citrus, possibly some rosemary (or something that feels like the ‘minty’ aspects of rosemary or lavender leaves) and maybe a touch of floral geranium, but the whole serves to communicate a huge lavender punch in the nose unlike anything I’ve ever experienced. If you are like me and tend to rub a lavender bud to release its smell every time you pass through a garden, you will appreciate this, but I can guess from some reviews posted that others find it difficult, challenging or just too raw. September 23, 2019 at 4:19pm Reply

        • OnWingsofSaffron: Oh yes, do! There’s a lovely post on Pour un Homme on Neil Chapman’s perfume blog. You might be interested: https://theblacknarcissus.com/2019/08/30/the-summer-diaries-vol-1-lohna-by-harrn-2016-pour-un-homme-de-caron-1934-pour-un-homme-de-caron-sport-2015/
          And yes, do once again: Néroli dorée is absolutely for men & women! September 23, 2019 at 4:23pm Reply

  • OnWingsofSaffron: I looked at the photo—Scottish/Irish castle?—and the moody, gothic atmosphere it has. Lucia di Lammermoor, or Lohengrin in opera. Which perfume is appropriate? No bergamot here!
    I would suggest lavender and something woody. Gris clair by Serge Lutens perhaps. What do you think? September 23, 2019 at 12:39pm Reply

    • Aurora: I second OnWings with Caron pour un Homme (lavender and vanilla) and will add two Hermes: Terre and Voyage which I love but Terre has been more successful.
      How thoughtful of you to make perfume queries for his birthday, a scent is something so personal and intimate. September 23, 2019 at 12:51pm Reply

      • John Luna: I love Pour un Homme de Caron too (I’m wearing it right now!) I first tried t at the old Caron Boutique in NYC and was instantly attracted to it, being now the proud owner of an absurdly large bottle that practically resembles an art deco sculpture on the bathroom counter. It *is* a little polarizing though (speaking of vanilla!) so tread carefully. September 23, 2019 at 1:10pm Reply

        • OnWingsofSaffron: It’s quite ravishing! I have a vintage bottle of the “les plus belles lavande” edition, and each time I wear it, I think: wow, what a great perfume! September 23, 2019 at 1:30pm Reply

        • Charlotte Barrow: John Luna – sounds like a very cool object! September 23, 2019 at 2:24pm Reply

        • Aurora: You made me smile with the art deco sculpture. I am very fond of Pour Un Homme which I wear occasionally, it also reminds me of my brother. September 27, 2019 at 11:25am Reply

      • Charlotte Barrow: Thank you Aurora! Yes it is very personal – nice to get suggestions from this knowledgeable bunch 🙂

        I’ve been wanting to try Terre d’Hermes for ages, will also look up Voyage! Hermes is such a great house for ‘intelligent’, beautiful options. September 23, 2019 at 2:23pm Reply

        • John Luna: Terre d’Hermès is a great all-rounder, with the added benefit of an EDP version to explore if he likes the original. One more (not an Hermès, but a child of the same nose, Jean-Claud Ellena) is Cartier’s Declaration, which is more complex (orange and a cedarlike-ISO E Super, but also a wonderful if polarizing use of cumin and cardamom). I’m a bit allergic to ISO, but if I were not I’d definitely vote for Declaration as signature scent material. It is rich, thoughtful, modern and worldly in a way that might suit a mature man a bit more that Terre (full disclosure: I teach at a boarding school where a lot of young guys wear Bleu de Chanel and Terre d’Hermès, so I may have associations with it being more of a younger, ‘crowd-pleaser’ type of scent.) September 23, 2019 at 4:24pm Reply

          • Charlotte Barrow: Yes I can see how that could influence your view of Terre d’Hermés! Declaration sounds intriguing, will look out for it. September 24, 2019 at 6:24am Reply

            • eudore: hello Charlotte, Declaration is very unique. One of those smells you try and never forget. September 24, 2019 at 8:45am Reply

          • eudora: hello John Luna, we have very similar tastes I think. Maybe you can help me with Declaration. There are different versions and concentrations…which I don’t like…anyway, my question is: do you know wihich one has the softest use of cumin? Thanks! September 24, 2019 at 8:41am Reply

            • John Luna: Hi Eudora,

              Cumin does seem to behave very differently on different people! I cook with it often and very much enjoy it is Aramis and Declaration. But to addresss your question, I’d suggest Declaration d’Un Soir (a beautiful use of rose, less cumin). September 24, 2019 at 11:37am Reply

              • Eudora: Thanks John Luna, I will try it! Declaration plus rose sounds very good. I read it is not Elena’s, do you think about it as a masterpiece like Declaration? September 27, 2019 at 8:12am Reply

                • John Luna: I think Declaration is a masterpiece as much for its originality (and being somewhat definitive of Ellena’s approach) as anything else, but d”un Soir seems like a somewhat hidden gem. Just my opinion of course. September 28, 2019 at 2:09pm Reply

                  • Eudora: I really appreciate your opinion, very well explained. Thanks and have a great weekend! September 28, 2019 at 3:05pm Reply

    • Tourmaline: Après l’Ondée! September 23, 2019 at 10:45pm Reply

    • Charlotte Barrow: OnWingsofSaffron I love the idea of matching scents to photos! My first thought was Dzonghka by L’Artisan which evokes cool stones; the incense could also fit the Emerald Isle’s church settings?

      Or what about L’Heure Bleu for a touch of soft melancholy; the heavy dose of oak moss in Mitsouko also seems appropriate.

      Finally, to herald the eventual arrival of spring, Penhaligon’s Ostara: the packaging includes a quote from Wordsworth’s ‘I Wandered Lonely as a Cloud’ – perhaps the great poet spent some time in that very spot! September 24, 2019 at 9:22am Reply

    • Sebastian: Grey Stone Castle, of course! (by Mark St. Marie, The World in Scents) September 28, 2019 at 3:50pm Reply

  • Anne: Hello,
    Seems my question was posted under reply. Looking for recommendations for pure lily of the valley fragrance. Thank you. September 23, 2019 at 1:59pm Reply

    • Martha: Following. September 23, 2019 at 2:38pm Reply

    • OnWingsofSaffron: Diorissimo (Dior) or Muguet du Bonheur (Caron). Apparently Paris—Biarritz (Chanel) has a lil-of-the-valley heart? September 23, 2019 at 4:31pm Reply

      • Anne: Thank you so much Will check out Caron and Chanel. Diorissimo has been through so many “modern” formulations it’s a vulgar shadow of its former self. September 23, 2019 at 4:40pm Reply

        • Notturno7: Hi Anne,
          I second Hermes Muguet Porcelain.
          I was also able to find vintage Diorissimo on ebay. It’s tricky cause that one doesn’t keep well but I had success with spray bottles and also pure perfume on ebay. The liquid has to stay light yellow instead of turning dark or orange. September 27, 2019 at 1:37pm Reply

    • Silvermoon: Hi Anne!
      Two suggestions: Lily of the Valley by Penhaligon and Muguet Porcelaine by Hermes. I especially like the latter. It’s a bit like the original Diorissimo. September 23, 2019 at 5:14pm Reply

      • Anne: Thank you Have Hermès. Will try Penhaligon. September 26, 2019 at 3:20pm Reply

    • Aurora: Another British LOTV to try after Penhaligon’s is Floris Lily of the Valley. I wear it occasionally. It doesn’t project much but is long lasting. September 27, 2019 at 11:28am Reply

  • Domestic Goblin: I absolutely loved the 2012 version of Ivoire by Balmain. It started off a bit green then turns into a creamy soapy scent that lasts for days! Unfortunately this fragrance was discontinued so am looking for a duplicate of this scent that has great longevity. Budget, no more than £70 for 100ml. September 23, 2019 at 2:10pm Reply

    • Aurora: Hello Domestic Goblin: It seems that finding a dupe of Ivoire is difficult. I read on a thread in either Make-Up Alley or Fragrantica that Van Cleef & Arpels Un Air de First is like. It does share notes so maybe try that. September 27, 2019 at 11:52am Reply

      • Domestic Goblin: Hello Aurora,

        The description of Un Air de First sounds lovely. Will look into it. Thank you. September 28, 2019 at 3:57am Reply

  • Ulrika: Hello there, I’m looking for a fall fragrance to replace my beloved Chanel No 5 L’Eau, which I’ve been using almost exclusively for a longer period and can’t really smell anymore. It seems to disappear the moment I spray it on. Eau Première feels too well behaved and powdery, the original No 5 too stern. I tried Jicky (too nostalgic) and Mitsouko (wonderful, but way too mighty for for me) and settled with Diptyque Philosykos for the moment, but am not quite happy. Any ideas? Thank you! September 23, 2019 at 2:26pm Reply

    • eudore: hello Ulrika, have you smelled Chanel n22. Like n5 but better…very warm. The drydown is so beautiful, in the vein of Eau Premiere. I only had a sample but for me is perfection. September 24, 2019 at 8:49am Reply

      • Ulrika: Hello Eudore, that sounds very good, thank you. I will definitely sample No. 22! September 24, 2019 at 10:25am Reply

        • Notturno7: Ulrika, I agree with no22. The beginning is strong, aldehydes times hundred but afterwards it’s divine. Victoria gave it a lovely 5 star review. September 27, 2019 at 1:33pm Reply

          • Ulrika: Thank you, Notturno7, I can’t wait to sample it! September 27, 2019 at 3:54pm Reply

        • Notturno7: Hi Ulrika, today I’m wearing Rive Gauche and the rose in it is just lovely. It’s a similar category, elegant, flowery, classic scent. You might like it, too.

          I couldn’t decide for today between RG and Hermes Galop which is a beautiful leather rose. It comes only in pure perfume but it’s gorgeous. September 27, 2019 at 7:54pm Reply

          • Ulrika: Thanks for reminding me of Rive Gauche, Notturno7. That’s a wonderful suggestion.
            Is Hermès Galop similar to Kelly Caleche? I never really warmed to Ellenas works for the house. Though I admire them intellectually, I never felt like wearing them personally. But perhaps I should give Hermès with Christine Nagel another chance … September 29, 2019 at 7:19am Reply

            • Notturno7: Hi Ulrika, I echo your sentiment in regards to Ellena’s creations for Hermes. I admire them but don’t wear them well, except for 24 Faubourg and Vanille Galante. I also have a bottle of First which he created for Van Cleff & Arpels and I like it. It’s a powerhouse of a perfume 😁. You might like it if you like No 5.
              Galop is very different from Kelly Caleche. It was a love at the first sniff. September 29, 2019 at 6:27pm Reply

  • MJ: Hello! Thank you for your blog and for this opportunity to discover new fragrance! I did post in the August thread but only recently, and user Aurora kindly suggested some fragrances, but also suggested I repost here in the new, more timely thread.

    When Fresh released Pear Cassis back in the early 2000s, I loved it. So sad when it was discontinued.

    I also love: BYREDO BLANCHE, BYREDO PULP, BYREDO PALERMO, SERGE LUTENS NUIT DE CELLOPHANE, SERGE LUTENS LA VIERGE DE FER, HEELEY OPHELIA, HEELEY NOTE DE YUZU + HIPPIE ROSE, OLENE, DO SOM.

    I dislike really musky, incense, leather, smoke.
    Would love to get some recommendations from the perfume brain hive!

    Please and thanks. September 24, 2019 at 2:40am Reply

    • Silvermoon: Hello MJ

      Have you tried Jo Malone perfumes? I ask because you liked the Pear Cassis, and that brought to mind two of the JM line: English Pear and Freesia as well as Blackberry and Bay. I really like the latter, especially for the autumn. Another from the line is Peony and Blush Suede. You might like to try these.

      One of the frustrating things about perfumes is that one never knows when they will be discontinued. There seems to be no warning system to allow people to stock up. September 24, 2019 at 3:59pm Reply

      • MJ: Thank you Silvermoon for these suggestions! Will add it to my try list! October 5, 2019 at 5:50pm Reply

  • Nancy Chan: Hi, I am looking for a perfume for Autumn. I would like a scent that is associated with Autumn such as roasted chestnuts, smoky scent of the air, walk in the forest with the golden leaves swirling around.

    I do not like any animalic notes, or too bitter smells. I don’t mind woody and tobacco notes. Patchouli is fine as long as it is well blended, and not the main ‘Star’ of the perfume. My go to perfume for Autumn, is Chanel’s Coco Mademoiselle.

    Thanks😃 September 24, 2019 at 3:40am Reply

    • Tourmaline: Hi Nancy,

      Here are 18 of the scents from my list of fragrances that I use in autumn. I have a list for each season. I hope that this list will help you to choose a fragrance you love.

      1. Tweed (Vivalis {Lenthéric} 1924/92)

      2. Trésor (Lancôme 1990)

      3. Volupté (Oscar de la Renta 1992)

      4. L’Heure Bleue (Guerlain 1912)

      5. Bal à Versailles (Jean Desprez 1962)

      6. Spellbound (Estée Lauder 1991)

      7. Nahéma (Guerlain 1979)

      8. Ombre Rose (Jean-Charles Brosseau 1981)

      9. Poison (Christian Dior 1985)

      10. Cinnabar (Estée Lauder 1978)

      11. Loulou (Cacharel 1987)

      12. Angel (Thierry Mugler 1992

      13. Lolita Lempicka (Lolita Lempicka 1997)

      14. Vol de Nuit (Guerlain 1933)

      15. Samsara (Guerlain 1989)

      16. Yvresse (Yves Saint Laurent 1993)

      17. Miss Dior (Christian Dior 1947)

      18. Femme (Rochas 1944/89)

      With kind regards,
      Tourmaline September 24, 2019 at 5:09am Reply

      • Nancy Chan: Hi Tourmaline, thank you for your recommendations. I ‘ll look forward to sampling these. September 24, 2019 at 7:34am Reply

    • Anne: Hello Nancy,

      One of the zadig and Voltaire scent has chestnut as a note. I like it unfortunately it turns too sweet on me.
      I love Vétiver Tonka by Hermes for autumn, the dry down is definitely nutty to me. It s my favourite autumnal perfume… EVER!
      I hope you find what you re looking for.
      Anne September 24, 2019 at 10:32am Reply

      • Nancy Chan: Hi Anne, thank you very much for your perfume recommendations. I’m looking forward to trying the different perfumes, but to also discover different notes which I would not usually gravitate towards in perfumes. September 24, 2019 at 12:19pm Reply

    • Silvermoon: Hi Nancy,

      Have you tried Baume du Doge (L’Eau d’Italie) or L’Air du Desert Marocain (Andy Tauer)? I think of them as lovely autumnal perfumes. I also think L’Heure Bleue a perfect autumn perfume. September 24, 2019 at 4:09pm Reply

      • Nancy Chan: Silvermoon, please see my reply below. September 24, 2019 at 4:33pm Reply

        • Nancy Chan: Hi OnwingsofSaffron, I’ve been thinking about that particular Caron perfume, but was not sure of it, as it is a Caron classic. Some classics can be a hit or miss, in some cases an acquired taste.

          Anyway, it seems as if you have read my mind, and maybe I should go and try it. The Nuit de Noel perfume bottle is exceptionally pretty too.

          Thank you, thank you. I have a long list of perfumes to try. September 24, 2019 at 4:51pm Reply

          • OnWingsofSaffron: Hi Nancy Chan, yes it‘s a classic and in all honesty, it doesn’t have a modern vibe. It is plush and has a brownish, chestnutty feel to it. The extrait is very different to the edt: far more floral, thick and somewhat jammy. The two layered is quite exceptional! And: longevity is absolutely unparalleled!! (PS I am referring to the vintage editions.) September 25, 2019 at 1:15am Reply

            • Nancy Chan: Hi OnwingsofSaffron, I have only seen the Nuit de Noel extrait in the Les Scenteurs website, so will definitely check this one out. Your description of it makes it worthy.

              The Caron perfumes are becoming difficult to find. I can see Les Scenteurs carry quite a few, but not the entire line. Unfortunately, no Caron boutique in London. September 25, 2019 at 3:55am Reply

              • Hilly: Fortnum’s carry most of the Carons

                I’d recomend Cloon Keen’s Castana -chestnut, cassia and vetiver. Les Senteurs (not Scenteurs) have it. September 25, 2019 at 5:36am Reply

                • Nancy Chan: Thank you Hilly, will add that to my long list to try perfumes. September 25, 2019 at 12:23pm Reply

    • OnWingsofSaffron: „Nuit de Noël“ by Caron: a marron glacé par excellence. September 24, 2019 at 4:27pm Reply

      • Nancy Chan: Silvermoon, Apologies, please see my reply above. September 24, 2019 at 4:54pm Reply

      • Nancy Chan: OnwingsofSaffron, Apologies, see my reply above September 24, 2019 at 4:55pm Reply

    • Raffaella: Hi Nancy, if you are looking for roasted chestnuts, smoky and woody scent I suggest you By the fireplace by Maison Margiela. It’s cosy and warm, ideal for fall and winter. September 25, 2019 at 7:22am Reply

      • Melissa Rosen: I love Peau de Peche. Anyone have other peach favorites?? September 25, 2019 at 11:34am Reply

        • Aurora: YS Yvresse/Champagne is a favorite for peach. September 27, 2019 at 11:55am Reply

      • Nancy Chan: Hi Raffaella, I will add your suggestion to my growing list. More chestnut scents to try.😃
        Thank you. September 25, 2019 at 12:34pm Reply

        • Sebastian: And here’s another one: Cloon Keen’s Castaña: roasted chestnut, vetiver, cassia, jasmine. In other words nutty, creamy, smoky, floral, very very smooth and thankfully for a foody perfume not too sweet. I like the realistic chestnut note in this one. I wonder what it’s made of. (Only thing one can be sure of: not chestnut.)

          Stuff from Cloon Keen Atelier is rather difficult to obtain. Depends on where you live. Lucky Scent and Finest in Fragrance are dead ends. In the UK, Thomas Brown carries it, but they don’t offer samples, only full bottles, and they don’t ship abroad. I have had luck at a Polish outfit, Mood Scent Bar.

          I am pleasantly surprised at the number of recommendations for such a rare note. I am still more surprised that it isn’t so absolutely rare after all: a quick note search at fragrantica.com returns 59 items. September 25, 2019 at 4:33pm Reply

          • Nancy Chan: Hi Sebastian, your and Hilly’s recommendation for Cloon Keen’s Castana makes it onto my to try list.

            By the way, Cloon Keen’s perfumes can be found at Les Senteurs in London. September 26, 2019 at 3:43am Reply

            • Sebastian: Oops, sorry for the redundancy, I did completely overlook Hilly’s recommendation.
              I believe Les Senteurs also do not ship overseas. Or are you in the UK? September 26, 2019 at 4:00am Reply

              • Nancy Chan: Yes, I am based in the UK. No worries. Thank you for your recommendation. September 26, 2019 at 5:05am Reply

    • kpaintsten: Your query immediately made me think of Hermes Ambre Narguile which smells to me like the month of October in a bottle.

      I’m also drawn to nutty scents this time of year. Some favorites are YSL Cinema, Mon Guerlain, Mona di Orio Musc (which has a dreamy almond running through it.) I’ve recently discovered Angel Etoile des Reves – a rich oriental with non-sweet marzipan at the center.

      Your description also makes me think of Edward Bess La Femme Boheme (and Genre, too) though it can be a challenge to get one’s hands on any of his releases.

      Finally, Annick Goutal did a series that might be appealing (long discontinued, but not difficult to find, perhaps) with Encens Flamboyant, Myrrhe Ardente, and Ambre Fetiche. I don’t recall exactly what the theme is, but they’re smoky and autumnal. September 25, 2019 at 8:50am Reply

      • Nancy Chan: Hi Kpaintsten, I will seek out some of your recommendations. My growing list will be fun in discovering new brands and perfume notes. Thank you. September 26, 2019 at 3:50am Reply

        • Aurora: Hello: Annick Goutal Encens Flamboyant and Ambre Fetiche are still in production, only Myrrhe Ardente is discontinued. September 27, 2019 at 11:57am Reply

    • Sebastian: Hi Nancy, you mention a walk the forest, and that you are OK with wood. Back in January, in response to a request for a cedar-based smell, I recommended Burvuvu:
      https://boisdejasmin.com/2019/01/recommend-me-a-perfume-january-2019.html#comment-1128764

      Someone on Fragrantica called it “a forest in a bottle”, and that’s what it is. When wearing it when taking a walk, I feel like being with a friendly, intelligent, and interesting companion, who just has a lot to say about the natural smells all around us. It’s in no way elegant, imagine wearing boots and a barbour jacket for your outing.

      The official note list contains castoreum, which I gather you wouldn’t like, but I hardly sense it. This is not an animalic smell. I guess the castoreum is mainly used as a fixative here. September 26, 2019 at 6:29pm Reply

      • Nancy Chan: Thanks. Your earlier suggestion for Cloon Keen Atelier’s Castana sounds very good to me. I will need to look into your other suggestion. September 27, 2019 at 3:44am Reply

    • AnnieA: @Nancy, Le Labo Patchouli 24 is the smell of a bonfire. September 26, 2019 at 9:39pm Reply

      • Nancy Chan: Hi AnnieA, thanks for your recommendation. September 27, 2019 at 3:46am Reply

    • Aurora: Hello Nancy: Lots of great recommendations already, I will add Rouge Bunny Rouge Embers, I tried it several years ago and remember it as a very good smoky perfume with some sweetness from balsams. September 27, 2019 at 11:32am Reply

      • Nancy Chan: Hi Aurora, thanks for adding another perfume to my growing list. September 27, 2019 at 12:29pm Reply

    • Laura: Hi Nancy,

      I wear Feminite du Bois from Lutens in foggy, rainy autumn days. I simply love the spicy, woody, plum notes from it. For me it is autumn in a bottle.
      Another choice is Coco EdT and sometimes I stole from my husband’s Tobacco Vanille and Chergui. September 28, 2019 at 3:04am Reply

      • Nancy Chan: Hi Laura, so Serge Luten’s Feminite du Bois and Chergui goes straight onto my list, also, Tom Ford’s Tobacco Vanille. September 28, 2019 at 2:57pm Reply

    • Sebastian: Hi Nancy, I’ve just rummaged through my box of samples and seen that I still have a tiny, tiny bit of Castaña, probably around 1 ml. If you like, I can send it to you, just mail me your postal address at [email protected] (This email address will expire sometime next week). September 28, 2019 at 4:05pm Reply

      • Nancy Chan: Thanks Sebastian for your generosity. Please keep your sample as a reference sample, and we can compare our reviews once I get a chance to sample it. September 29, 2019 at 8:53am Reply

      • Nancy Chan: Sorry, I meant to say once I get a chance to test Castana in the shop. September 29, 2019 at 11:10am Reply

        • Sebastian: I’d be interested to hear what you think about it, perhaps in a future thread.

          As for keeping reference samples, I’m afraid I’m no good at archiving stuff (and also have no desire for it). Usually, when I know I will no longer use a sample, I give it to someone who is interested in it, or else just throw it away.

          Perhaps that might be an interesting topic in a future thread, too: Do you keep your personal perfume archives? September 29, 2019 at 2:18pm Reply

          • Nancy Chan: No, I don’t keep a perfume archive. I just keep perfumes that I actually wear. I have a small collection, and I’m just deciding what I really love and any perfumes that I will not repurchase again.

            I just wanted to deviate away from my usual floral and citrus type perfumes. Adding an Autumnal perfume, such as a woody smoky theme might shake things up a bit.

            Yes, I will definitely comment once I sample Castana.

            Thanks. September 30, 2019 at 3:50am Reply

  • Lydia: Hi Perfume lovers,

    I would love to hear if any of you have favorites on the discount perfume websites that you consider exceptionally good for the price. I began exploring those websites earlier this year in an effort to find my mother an alternative to her favorite discontinued l’Occitane rose (many thanks again for the recommendations offered here!) and was surprised to find that there might be some good discounted perfumes available.

    I like spicy orientals, chypres, rich florals, powdery feminines (but not too cloying-synthetic), and herbal-citrus colognes.
    I’m not a fan of aquatics, “clean” scents, super-sugary or fruitchouli scents (they all go really sour on my skin).
    Perfumes under 50 US dollars range would be great to know about. (Most of what I got was under 20, but I’ll save to splurge on something really good, especially with the holidays coming up.)

    So far I’ve been happy with Rochas Femme, Eau de Rochas, Loulou by Cacharel, Calligraphy Rose by Aramis and Beyond Rose by Clinique. I’m waiting for an order of Esprit d’Oscar by Oscar de la Renta (Victoria’s review was so good I took a leap of faith. Crossed fingers!) September 24, 2019 at 10:45am Reply

    • Lydia: PS If anyone’s curious about Victoria’s Esprit review, it was actually just a paragraph in a 2011 Lancome Poeme review, but still quite helpful. September 24, 2019 at 11:06am Reply

    • kpaintsten: Are you going to share the websites where you’ve been finding bottles for under $20 USD??? My go-to is ebay. Fragrancenet has good prices, too, particularly after applying the 37% off code that’s always available. September 25, 2019 at 8:55am Reply

      • Lydia: Hi kpaintsten,

        Definitely! Fragrancenet has been one of my main go-to sites and I always look for the 37% discount coupon online.

        I’ve had mostly good experiences with their stock, although I had some disappointments (to put it mildly). I got a bottle of Rochas Lumiere intense that I believe was not only fake but downright poisonous – it burned my skin, gave me shortness of breath, and when I pried the sprayer off – an experiment I won’t try again – it shot out like a fountain and the juice foamed and fizzed in the toilet when I threw it out. Scary!

        I think I also got a fake Guerlain Lui tester – the bottle has visible drips in the black coating and it smells like liquid smoke with a dab of vanilla – surely that’s not what Guerlain had in mind!
        On the other hand, I got a wonderful bottle of Guerlain’s Encens Mythique D’Orient a while back in the clear bottle with the original box, and it smells authentic, so you never know. (That one was not under 20 of course.)

        I’ve also ordered from BeautyEncounter and Perfume.com. I got an eau de toilette of Guerlain’s Vol de Nuit from the former that was so faint I assumed it was fake until I saw that most Guerlain eau de toilettes these days generate complaints about fading even when obtained from legitimate distributors.

        So the gray market is definitely a bit of a fragrance wild west, although not so much as ebay. September 26, 2019 at 9:43am Reply

    • Eudora: Lydia, we have business here! I love Marroussia and Madonnas Truth or dare. Victoria has a 4 stars review of it. I love it and don’t find it cheap nor sweet at all. Both are around 15€ And both are always very complemented by people and husband, this last think being rare…
      I will tell you more when I remember…
      But…you must tell me the perfume you found to replace the Four Roses perfume, please… September 26, 2019 at 8:39am Reply

      • Lydia: Hi Eudora,

        In my quest to find a replacement for my mother’s beloved l’Occitane Roses et Reines she tried out:
        Perfumer’s Workshop Tea Rose (which she found too sharp)
        Rochas’ Tocade (which she found too “sandy” – her word for musky/spicy)
        Guerlain’s Flora Rosa (which she just didn’t enjoy)
        Annick Goutal’ Rose Absolue (ditto)
        Natalie’s La Rose (which she found too sharp)
        Paul Smith’s Rose (which she liked a lot for summer but decided wasn’t sweet enough for a second bottle).

        In the end she opted to go back to L’Occitane and has been using Arlesienne ever since. It’s not quite as striking as Reines, but it has the characteristic L’Occitaine fresh floral sweetness that she loves.

        Thanks for your suggestions!
        I never heard of Marouissa but the online reviews sound interesting enough that I really want to try it now.

        I remember that Truth or Dare review. I never found a sample or bottle on the discount sites but maybe it will show up in a yard sale or goodwill someday.

        Another affordable perfume I recommend is Azzaro Pour Elle Extreme. It’s a loud spicy fruity incensey floral perfume with an interesting scratchy note that might be either the oud or the saffron. It wasn’t instant love when I first sampled it, but then I couldn’t stop smelling the scent strip and ended up craving it. It’s more a clubbing and rock concert perfume than a museums and classical music perfume, so not my usual taste, but I think it’s a lot of fun and great for an outdoor venue (probably not very restaurant-friendly). September 26, 2019 at 10:42am Reply

        • Tourmaline: Hi Lydia,

          Is Rose et Reines unavailable where you or your mother live? It is available from L’Occitane here in Australia. (You have to click on a country when you enter the website.) It is also available from a home shopping network here; I bought some from their website early this year.

          Good luck with finding it.

          With kind regards,
          Tourmaline September 27, 2019 at 9:17am Reply

          • Lydia: Hi Tourmaline,

            Thanks for the suggestion. Unfortunately Roses et Reines doesn’t appear to be available in the US via L’Occitane or the Home Shopping Network. I could probably track down a bottle for her somewhere, but my mother uses her signature perfume daily and liberally, and likes popping over to the shop to restock when she runs out. (I admire her serial monogomy approach to perfume although I’m unable to imitiate it because of all the tempting options out there.) September 27, 2019 at 11:05am Reply

            • Tourmaline: Hi Lydia,

              I understand and sympathize with your mother’s problem. I hope she finds a new fragrance that she loves.

              Like you, I could never again be monogamous with perfume. Two years of wearing Y in my early twenties stopped me from smelling it on myself, and it was a relief when I finally allowed myself to develop a fragrance wardrobe.

              With kind regards,
              Tourmaline September 28, 2019 at 1:11am Reply

        • Eudora: Thanks Lydia for your response. I find a very different market here in Europe from the US in this topic. Well, I assumed you are located in the US because of the $$$ and not €€€.
          I travel to the US every year and have found good deals but not great. I bought White Diamonds and it was ok but…and same with Paloma Picasso the golden bottle which was very disappointing after adoring my mini vintage black one.
          On the other hand, not discounted but quite cheap if you buy the small bottle, have you tried Lust Lush? It is jasmin on asteroids, very potent, the real thing.
          And cheap and always nice is good Old Spice…
          And yes, if you have the chance Maroussia is gold and same for Truth or dare. September 27, 2019 at 10:03am Reply

          • Lydia: Eudora,

            I think you’re right about US customers not always getting the good stuff. Tourmaline’s comment above about being able to buy Roses et Reines in Australia, when it’s no longer available here, is typical. I’ve also seen a lot of intriguing Yves Rocher perfumes offered to European/UK customers which are unavailable on the US site. Maybe it has to do with marketing studies of mainstream US perfume preferences.

            I tried Lush’s Lust a while ago but I was testing at least 4 of their scents at once and may have missed its beauty. I’ll take your suggestion to heart and swing by their shop to try it again.

            I never considered Old Spice, but if I can find a sample or tester in a store I’ll definitely try it. It would make me laugh to have a bottle on my perfume shelf.
            One of these days I also want to try Stetson Cologne for men. Did you ever read Tania Sanchez’s hysterical review of it in the A-Z perfume guide?
            “Well, shine my spurs, this is a masculine? I could’ve sworn it was a crisp, classical feminine oriental in the style of Tabu and Youth Dew.”
            (I never stop getting joy from that book.) September 27, 2019 at 11:29am Reply

          • Lydia: PS re:Old Spice – it would make me laugh in a GOOD way to own a bottle, I meant. I’m delighted to have unexpected perfumes. 😊 September 27, 2019 at 11:14pm Reply

            • Eudora: Hello Lydia, I want to confess that I haven’t read that book, but it gets a lot of mentions. I consider myself an amateur…and maybe always will!…do you recommend it? Maybe it is time for me to go forward. I am curious to know if the authors talk about Old Spice! Try it Lydia, it is very unique and pleasant. The original stick deodorant is also good, my husband doesn’t want others 😉 and it smells like the cologne. Have a great one! September 28, 2019 at 7:55am Reply

              • John Luna: It sounds funny to play the ‘vintage snob’ card with such cheapies, but I do recommend an older bottle of either Stetson or Old Spice if you come across them. Stetson does indeed smell like a vanillic oriental (and this coming from a guy who routinely wears Caron Pour un Homme.) Old Spice smells like a toned down Opium (for women) with less amber and no smoke. Even the new stuff (aftershave formulation) is actually quite nice, once you decant it into a glass bottle… The old stuff is deeper in terms of a sandalwood accord, and s more balanced in its use of clove and carnation. You can buy a slightly more pleasant version (creamier, less clove, plus a glass bottle!) in Europe called “Old Spice Original”, I believe. Also on the Canadian online shaving supplier Fedrihan. September 28, 2019 at 2:38pm Reply

                • Eudora: John an Lydia, another example of the different markets. The Old Spice version I am familiar with is the European one. It comes in a white nice glass bottle and it is really creamy and pleasant. It costs about 10 euros and doesn’t smell cheap nor old at all, in my opinion. September 28, 2019 at 3:13pm Reply

                  • John Luna: Good to hear! I do mean to order a bottle from Fedrihan’s sooner or later. It’s mostly been superseded by Habit Rouge in my weekly rotation, but when you are in the mood for Old Spice, there is nothing precisely like it. September 28, 2019 at 4:46pm Reply

                • Lydia: Thanks, John. Such useful information! September 29, 2019 at 4:20pm Reply

                • Lydia: I just went hunting online and it does look like the original version of old spice isn’t for sale in the US. It’s even sold out on Fedrihan now.
                  The complaints on Amazon are emphatic – a lot of men who used Old Spice for decades are VERY annoyed about the reformulated scent.
                  What a shame.

                  I’ll keep a lookout for old bottles of this. Maybe a thrift store or flea market will have some forgotten bottle that missed being discarded (I doubt many non perfume fans would realize an old bottle of aftershave might be worth keeping). September 29, 2019 at 11:10pm Reply

              • Lydia: Eudora,

                I’m a perfume amateur too, and so glad to have discovered fellow enthusiasts online.

                I enthusiastically recommend the Turin/Sanchez A-Z perfume guide. It’s extremely funny, intelligent, detailed, and informative. Just be prepared for possible cutting reviews of your favorite perfumes (we’ve all been through it) and enjoy the ride.
                Their 2008 guide called Old Spice “a delicious Tabu-like oriental” and gave it 3 stars (out of 5) – not bad at all.

                I also enjoyed Neil Chapman’s extended childhood reminiscence of Old Spice in his Perfume book (Perfume: In Search of Your Signature Scent). I recommend that one too for entertaining and useful perfume information. September 29, 2019 at 4:18pm Reply

                • Eudora: Hi Lydia, if you feel comfortable, where in the US are you located? October 1, 2019 at 10:11am Reply

                  • Lydia: Hi Eudora,

                    I’m in NYC October 1, 2019 at 10:36am Reply

                    • Eudora: Hello! I asked bc next week I am visiting DC! Have a great one Lydia! October 9, 2019 at 11:30am

                  • Lydia: Have a fun DC visit, Eudora! October 9, 2019 at 5:42pm Reply

    • Aurora: Hello Lydia: FragranceX is another discount site I liked when I used it. No fake. Basically you might want to continue with the Guerlains which are discounted, they are some of the best classics, also the green chypre Jean-Louis Scherrer is affordable and one of my favorites. September 27, 2019 at 11:37am Reply

      • Lydia: Aurora,

        You read my mind! Although the Lui disappointment is sitting heavily with me (my budget is small and every purchase means I can’t try something else), I love the guerlinade accord so much in others of the line that I plan on taking a chance in the futire with L’Heure Bleu, Mitsouko, and Jicky. Even in more threadbare reformulations they smell better on my skin than many of the newer perfumes I’ve sampled. I’ve never bought from FragranceX, but I’m willing to try them out.

        Thanks for the Jean-Louis Scherrer recommendation. I got an old mini of Scherrer 2 recently that has a nice dry, woody, 70s quality I like, and that makes me very curious about Scherrer 1. Great suggestion! September 27, 2019 at 1:24pm Reply

      • Lydia: Hi Aurora,
        Just wanted to let you know that the Scherrer was a big winner. It reminds me a bit of vintage Ivoire and other long lost scents I’ve been missing.
        It was quite difficult to find on the US sites, but I did find a tester bottle and I’m going to keep a lookout for it wherever older bottlesare found. Thanks! October 23, 2019 at 11:52pm Reply

  • Nancy Chan: Hi Silvermoon, I am not familiar with Andy Tauer and L’ Eau d’Italie brand, but I was looking at Les Scenteurs website and they carry Andy Tauer perfumes plus other niche brands.

    However, I am slightly more familiar with Guerlain, but will need to revisit L’ Heure Bleue. Thank you. I am so happy with all the suggestions you and the other Bois de Jasmin readers have suggested. September 24, 2019 at 4:32pm Reply

    • Silvermoon: Nancy, if you can get to their shop in London, then you can try these perfumes out. They are very helpful and knowledgeable. Also, you could pop into the Atelier Cologne shop in Covent Garden. Their Cafe Tuberosa is another beautiful one (Victoria reviewed it a while ago, and really liked it).

      Let us know what you decided you liked from all the suggestions made here. September 24, 2019 at 5:35pm Reply

      • Nancy Chan: Hi Silvermoon, As I live in London I know the Atelier Cologne boutique in Covent Garden, but have never tried any of their perfumes. Will make this a quest to do this.

        Yes, I will definitely report back on the perfumes I try.

        PS: For anyone interested in niche perfumes, I recommend you take a trip to Les Scenteurs boutique in Belgravia, London. There I was able to obtain perfume samples of Caron and Frédéric Malle. The staff there are very helpful. September 25, 2019 at 3:49am Reply

  • Jennifer: Hello! I’m taking a vacation to Mexico soon and would love a bright, sunny scent to take along. I was thinking a ylang ylang/ginger combination would be nice! I prefer long-lasting scents with some sillage. Any suggestions much appreciated. Thank you September 25, 2019 at 4:12pm Reply

    • Danica: Twilly is Ginger/ Tuberose/ Sandalwood. Bapteme du Feu is Ginger/ gingerbread/ rose/ musk
      Roger and Gallet have a ginger cologne
      Embruns d’Ylang is a salty Ylang with mineral tones September 26, 2019 at 1:54am Reply

      • Jennifer: Danica – These are all great suggestions and all new to me…ordering samples now! Thank you!! September 26, 2019 at 4:49pm Reply

    • Silvermoon: For ginger, have you tried Five o’clock au Gingembre (serge Lutens) or Amber and Ginger Lily (jo Malone)? The latter comes as a body butter, which is another lovely option for perfuming oneself.

      Ormandy Jayne has various sunny bright perfumes. Keeping Mexico in mind, perhaps some of the tropical floral ones (Champaca, Frangipani, Sampaquita, Tiara) would work well. September 26, 2019 at 11:35am Reply

      • Silvermoon: Sorry, autocorrect: it should be Ormonde Jayne. September 26, 2019 at 11:37am Reply

        • Jennifer: Silvermoon – Five o’clock au Gingembre is one of my favorites of all time! The Jo Malone body butter sounds divine. I do love Ormonde Jayne – you’re right, I think those would work and I need to re-visit some of my OJ samples. Thanks for the suggestions! September 26, 2019 at 4:51pm Reply

          • Silvermoon: Wishing you a lovely trip to Mexico! You certainly will have a beautifully scented one. Where are you going? September 26, 2019 at 5:00pm Reply

            • Jennifer: Heading to Playa Del Carmen – looking forward to swimming in cenotes, beach time and delicious ceviche! We went to Tulum a few years back and enjoyed it so much. Have you traveled to Mexico? September 27, 2019 at 4:47pm Reply

              • Silvermoon: Yes, I have traveled there a little. I have been in Mexico City (great archeological sites and amongst the best museums I have ever visited- the National Anthropology Museum) and Merida in the Yucatan. Here, I also visited Uxmal, Chicen Itza, etc and swam in a cenote (you are sure to enjoy it). September 28, 2019 at 6:35am Reply

                • Jennifer: Yes, it’s so beautiful. Looking forward to trying my new samples. Gracias again for the suggestions! September 29, 2019 at 7:00pm Reply

    • Aurora: Guy Laroche Fidji has a wonderful ylang note, also La Pluie by Miller Harris is an ylang soliflore but I think it’s discontinued. Eau Moheli by Diptyque which I liked when I tried it has a combination of ginger and ylang, I second Danica’s R&G too.
      Have a wonderful vacation! September 27, 2019 at 11:44am Reply

    • Aurora: I was forgetting Molton Brown Ylang-Ylang which I have and love in the summer. It is mainly ylang with a ginger note. September 27, 2019 at 12:08pm Reply

      • Jennifer: Aurora – these sound amazing, thanks for the additions, much appreciated! September 27, 2019 at 4:50pm Reply

  • elizabeth: Hello! I love Victoria’s blog and I always enjoy reading these ‘Recommend Me a Perfume’ threads. I was gifted a Chanel Les Exclusifs Discovery Box last Christmas, and I’ve been wearing most of them. So delightful! I love so many. I simply cannot decide which one is full-bottle worthy. My budget can only handle one full bottle at the moment, but how to choose? I’ve noticed that many of them have low sillage, La Pausa, for example. It’s lovely but has zero projection on me. I’d prefer to buy one with staying power. In my top tier, in no particular order, are: Misia, Beige, 1932, 31 Rue Cambon, Bois des Iles, Coromandel, Sycomore. Which Les Exclusifs are your favorites and which ones last the longest, in your opinion(s)? Thank you. September 25, 2019 at 6:23pm Reply

    • Danica: Misia is the longest lasting especially on clothes. My favorite is Cuir de Russie. i have two bottles, one from the original 2007 Exclusifs release, and a tester from when Cuir de Russie was part of the line. They are the best. In the absence of that perhaps Sycomore but again I have an old bottle and not sure what it smells like now. The classics are considered to be Coromandel, Sycomore and 31 Rue Cambon. Bois des Iles is well reviewed. I think Beige is probably the most versatile if you are working and need to smell unobtrusive but good. September 26, 2019 at 1:57am Reply

      • elizabeth: Thank you so much. I agree that Beige is good for the office. September 26, 2019 at 6:59am Reply

    • Notturno7: OnWingsofSaffron I agree about Nuit de Noel extrait. I have few bottles of it, few very vintage, one 10 years old and also EDT or EDP spray, I don’t remember. I love it, especially in the winter and sometimes as a good night scent. Little bit on my wrists before going to bed, it feels so special and luxurious.
      Did you ever try En Avion?
      Has anyone on this thread?
      It sounds so nice in Victoria’s review and I haven’t seen it in the shops I visited. It really makes me want to try it. September 26, 2019 at 3:18am Reply

      • Aurora: Hi Notturno: Yes, I’ve tried En Avion extrait and liked it extremely, Victoria’s review is wonderful. September 27, 2019 at 11:46am Reply

        • Notturno7: Thank you, Aurora. I’ll have to find where I can get a sample. I love old Caron perfumes and treasure my vintage Narcisse Noir, Bellodgia and few bottles of Nuit de Noel of which I like both vintage and relatively new extraits.
          NN in extrait is just a different world, smoky and dark. I wish they still make perfumes like that. Maybe they do but I have no idea. 🧐😉
          Thank you, Victoria. Your blog is so much fun and I treasure it with its friendly community. September 27, 2019 at 8:02pm Reply

          • Aurora: You’re welcome and thank you for the description of Nuit de Noel which I’ve never tried. It turns out I have the newer Carons, Farnesiana, Aimez-Moi, Parfum Sacre (vintage version) and Rose, vintage extrait which is my favorite bright rose, full of rose essence, Caron re-released this one very recently recently but Victoria noted that while it kept its retro vibe it was mustier now, not the same quality. September 28, 2019 at 3:58am Reply

            • Notturno7: Dear Aurora,
              Sorry, both perfumes have same initials.
              Narcisse Noir vintage perfume smells dark and has a smoke note to my nose but not Nuit de Noel perfume which reminds me of candied fruit w rum. Like cakes with spices baked for Christmas. I love it!
              Of newer perfumes I have Aimez-moi and Farnesiana.
              How does Parfum Sacre smell like? How did you find the vintage bottle?
              I like Farnesiana in cold weather or at night. It smells comforting and cozy to me.
              Aimez-moi I have a bottle of but never use.
              It’s funny how some perfumes we don’t reach for. September 30, 2019 at 3:05am Reply

              • Aurora: Dear Notturno:
                Thank you, I remember smelling Narcisse Noir during my class with Victoria, and Tabac Blond also, and they were so good and distinctive.
                Parfum Sacre is incensey with all its myrrh and has rose too along with spices. It is a very dark perfume.
                The drydown goes on for days when I tried it on a strip it still smelled of PS 3 weeks later. I won my bottle on eBay UK but I understand that PS is still good today and there is an intense version which I haven’t tried. October 1, 2019 at 1:17am Reply

                • Notturno7: Dear Aurora,
                  Thank you for sharing!
                  Gosh, now I want to try Parfum Sacre so badly 😀! Your description matches my wish list perfume! Is it EDP or something else?
                  If you decide it’s too dark for you, I’d be happy to trade it for something you might like.
                  I’ll look it up on Ebay.
                  It’s my birthday today, so why not? 😀
                  How wonderful that you had a class with Victoria and you got to smell Tabac Blond!!
                  I never tried it.
                  Recently I tried Tom Ford Tobacco Vanille and it made me wonder if it has any similarities with Tabac Blond.
                  Ah, these great vintage perfumes from a different era. When I play piano classics it transports me to different times. No wonder I love these parfumes ❤️ October 1, 2019 at 4:22am Reply

                  • Aurora: Dear Notturno: It’s the EDP, I believe there was an extrait too at one time.
                    I do love it even though it is rather heavy. Crossing fingers you find a great deal on eBay, I hope I didn’t trigger too much of a lemming. Go for a peppercorn bottle in a black and gold box to get a real vintage.

                    Oh yes, I was so lucky to win the class with Victoria, it was an eye opener, Tabac Blond is not really similar to Tobacco Vanille to my nose. I believe it has the Caron base, Mousse de Saxe and is not gourmand at all.

                    With warm wishes for your birthday. October 1, 2019 at 1:50pm Reply

                  • Aurora: Dear Notturno, I think you have left a further comment about PS but it didn’t post in the thread, only the first sentence showed in latest comments below so I’m answering that first sentence hoping my comment will post correctly, we’ll see.
                    Vintage PS EDP didn’t come in the regular Caron oval glass with ‘pebbles’and gold cap, when I said ‘peppercorn’ I meant that it was round, like a clock too. This is the one to look for. October 3, 2019 at 11:23am Reply

                    • Notturno7: Dear Aurora, thank you for your advice. My reply showed up on the thread below.
                      I bought Parfum Sacre EDT in a round bottle, gold box. On the listing it said ‘vintage’. I’m waiting for the package to arrive and I hope I didn’t make a mistake for not finding an EDP.
                      My wallet is shaking in fear cause I also got 3 more things!!
                      I found vintage Arpège extrait for a great price, $45 for 1 Oz of pure perfume, sealed and in original box, so I had to get it. Then I bought En Avion pure perfume, it was expensive but somehow the seller sent me 1.7 Oz of perfume instead of 1 Oz listed, for the same price. It’s gorgeous! I kept sniffing my wrists all day today. I started my day w No 5 body cream on my arms and then during the day my package arrived with En Avon. LOL. I couldn’t resist putting it on. It made my day😀.
                      And couple of weeks ago in duty free in Rome I couldn’t resist Mitsouko EDP. I broke my full bottle few years ago and still have extrait that I use as a treat. Now, I can spray my new EDP. I was worried they reformulated it too much and weakened it, but it still smells great. Maybe it was an older bottle as newer Guerlains sell more, I assume. The SA was surprised I was going for Mitsouko despite all the newer releases! October 5, 2019 at 4:53am

                  • Aurora: Dear Notturno: I’m enjoying the story of your latest acquisitions very much.
                    So happy for you about the Arpege great find, and En Avion is worth the money (I only have a sample of it) and by getting an upgraded amount you’ll be able to enjoy it for a long time.

                    About Parfum Sacre, yes, it is the same as in Victoria’s review, the one I called peppercorn/clock.
                    Fingers crossed you’ll like the EDT as I feel a little bit responsible so to speak, if you have a chance give your impression.
                    I am from London, UK so we’re quite far apart but it’s been great to chat. October 6, 2019 at 3:33am Reply

                    • Notturno7: Dear Aurora, I’m so enjoying this correspondence. The timing of your message is perfect. Parfum Sacré arrived today! I just found your message and I’m sitting happily, enjoying the leftovers of my birthday chocolate cake and a glass of champagne after spending time with my loved ones today…
                      On my wrists and neck I splashed some Parfum Sacre EDT and I absolutely love it! ❤️ It’s not the spray bottle but the one where you just dab some on and it’s 100ml so it will last me a long time.
                      Peppery rose, incense, myrrh, musk, it’s just divine!
                      I peeked into The Guide and they gave it 4 stars but mentioned that the reformulated version smells more like Aqua di Gio and that it would make a terrific masculine. I’m so glad I got the vintage version. This rose is gorgeous and radiant. I wonder how your EDP smells like.
                      I love deep and rich fragrances. This will be just perfect during the cold months and who knows, maybe a dab during the warmer months might make it blossom on the skin, too.
                      Thank you for recommending it! 😃
                      I’m so glad I bought it.
                      If you wish to stay in touch, please get my contact info from Victoria.
                      I have so many samples, I’d be happy to send you something you haven’t tried.
                      Or if you come to San Francisco, I’ll show you which stores I love to visit when looking for a new perfume.
                      Take care 🦋🌈 October 6, 2019 at 5:04am

                  • Aurora: Dear Notturno:

                    I am over the moon that the Parfum Sacre turns out to be a winner for you!

                    Enjoy all your recent goodies.

                    What a nice idea for us to exchange emails on our thoughts about perfume, I followed your suggestion and have just now emailed Victoria who will put us in contact, when she has a chance, I believe she has been travelling.

                    We’ll speak soon.

                    All my best,
                    Aurora October 7, 2019 at 12:26pm Reply

              • Aurora: Also, like you I reach for Farnesiana in colder weather, it’s almondy, almost a non-sweet gourmand. Aimez-moi smells like pastis to me, and I enjoy that note very much. October 1, 2019 at 2:07am Reply

      • Lydia: Hi Notturno7,
        I tried En Avion eau de parfum once and loved it. The sample was from sometime in the last 5-10 years I think, and smelled to me like carnation with a shot of anise (not sure why – no anise in the note, but it did evoke absinthe for me a tiny bit), and leaned retro in a lovely way. September 29, 2019 at 11:37pm Reply

        • Notturno7: Dear Lydia, thank you! That sounds perfect. I love carnation note. And anise or absinthe with it, in a retro way! Can’t wait to try it.
          I organized my perfumes today. It took me few hours, I was shocked at how many bottles I have and decided I had too many and shouldn’t buy anything new.
          But now already,thanks to your comments I’m thinking how to find Caron boutique and try En Avion.😅😅 September 30, 2019 at 3:12am Reply

    • Eudora: I found here an exemple of the difference between longevity and sillage. In my opinion.. Coromandel has both, but the longevity is really amazing. Scarfs from last years, clothes that you wash… Sycomore has a huge sillage, I smelled my husband moving the other day while teaching…I was in the last sit of a big university classroom and every breath I took, everyone, was filled with Sycomore. September 26, 2019 at 8:30am Reply

    • Eudora: I forgot to mention that I am in love with n22. Did you like it or loved it? Coromandel, on the other hand, is gorgeous, so much that I think is the best of the collection. Cuir de Russie is gorgeous also… Well, I tried to help! September 26, 2019 at 8:49am Reply

    • AnnieA: @Elizabeth – ooh, envy at the discovery box! Sycomore is long-lasting, but alas, makes me sneeze. Beige is nice and classy, 28 La Pausa is classy and unobtrusive. September 26, 2019 at 9:44pm Reply

      • Notturno7: Dear Aurora,
        What did you mean by peppercorn bottle?
        The one that’s long and oval with little dots?
        I almost bought the one w black and gold box but after I asked the seller it if was vintage, he changed the price, almost doubled it! I couldn’t believe my eyes!
        I decided to buy from another seller and got the EDT in the gold box. It seems to be vintage and the bottle shape looks similar to the bottle in Victoria’s review. I hope I didn’t make a mistake for getting EDT.
        Purple box packaging is older, too I think, and the square bottles seem to be new.
        Thank you for your help.
        It’s wonderful you won a class with Victoria. What lovely memories you must have!
        I live in SF area and I’ll see if I can find older Caron perfumes here. I’m glad Tabac Blond isn’t similar to Tobacco Vanille and your description of Aimez moi will make me look for my bottle. Weather is getting colder and Farnesiana will get some use again 😉 October 2, 2019 at 3:22am Reply

  • Notturno7: Hi Elizabeth, from Les Exclusifs line I have and love Cuir Russie, Coromandel, 31 Rue Cambon, Bois des Iles, Misia, No 22. They all stay on for hours. I think Coromandel is super strong and few people complimented and asked what I was wearing when I had it on. September 26, 2019 at 3:27am Reply

    • Elizabeth: Thank you very much for your reply. I agree that Coromandel projects well and has more staying power. It reminds me a bit of the original Coco, which I wore in the 90s but smells different (reformulated?) now. Or maybe my sense of smell has changed? Coromandel is very cozy and warm, I think I’ll be wearing my tiny bottle more now that we’re moving into colder weather. September 26, 2019 at 7:04am Reply

      • Notturno7: Hi Elizabeth, I use No22 a lot, I love the incense note in the drydown. Also, Bois des Iles in the winter and 31 Rue Cambon when it’s warm. No 22 and 31 Rue Cambon seem to stay stronger on me then Bois des Iles. September 30, 2019 at 3:24am Reply

  • Alexia: Hello! I have been using and loving Si by Armani for a long time, but now I’ve grown a bit tired of it and I’m looking for a a new favourite. I want something that has the same effect as Si does, usually when I wear it I get tons of compliments from men (sometimes from the same men) . I want something sensual, but not tacky. A nighttime perfume.

    I also love l’imperatrice by Dolce Gabbana, but I feel like that one is too light and fruity right now.
    I like the new Donna born in Roma, but it falls to flat on me.

    I think a chypre or gourmand might suit me

    Always a plus if the bottle is appealing. September 26, 2019 at 5:52am Reply

  • Keith: I recently got a sage-scented deodorant that made me realize that I might very much like the scent of sage! The only sage fragrances that I’ve tried are Viktor and Rolf’s Sage Spell and Jo Malone’s Wood Sage and Sea Salt, neither of which made a huge impression on me. I like Wood Sage a little better, but Sage Spell just fizzled out far too quickly for me. I don’t want to spend an enormous amount on it, so if I can purchase it at a discounter like fragrancenet that would be ideal. Thanks for your thoughts! September 26, 2019 at 5:37pm Reply

    • Aurora: Hello Keith: L’Artisan Parfumeur Caligna has a lot of sage but you also have to like fig (and pine needles). It is unusual and great in summer. September 27, 2019 at 12:11pm Reply

    • John Luna: Hi Keith,

      These suggestions are a bit old school, but neither will break the bank and both are essential to getting your nose around perfume history regardless… Caron’s Yatagan is a fascinating blend of bitter herbs and incense-like pine needles, with the suggestion of horse-sweat hovering like humid mist over an autumn-forest-floor chypre accord. While many comment on an unusual ‘fresh celery accord’ in the opening (basil + watercress), what it reminds me of in warm weather especially is childhood visits to the Mojave Desert: pinyon pine and Russian sage abound. My bottle seemed a bit thin when I first purchased it but seemed to develop both projection and longevity after a season or two.

      Paco Rabanne Pour Homme is a classic ‘aromatic fougère’ composition that opens with a big blast of laundry-day lavender with touches of rosemary, clary sage and pine cleaner made pungent with citruses, sweetened by tonka and bolstered by musk. The sage here is friendlier than in the dry and raspy Yatagan, but also more synthesized into soapy abstraction.

      Both of these fragrances have been around since the 70’s (sort of a heyday for sage) and both have been reformulated, but I’d suggest trying samples of each for the education alone (both take some time to appreciate — this won’t be boring!) If you can tolerate either of these, you’ll have to also consider Kouros, which I will not even try to describe…

      Good luck! September 28, 2019 at 11:48pm Reply

  • N: I discovered Jo Malone Poppy & Barley. I like it and I have a 9 ml “deluxe sample” spray bottle coming my way. It isn’t a run of the mill mall scent and a nice transitional scent from warmer to cooler autumn days. I wish Jo Malone would sell that 9 ml size bottle in an à la carte way where you can pick your own fragrance rather than in their multi-bottle gift sets in which they decide what fragrances are included. That size is ideal to include in a fragrance wardrobe and for layering scents without having big bottles languishing around unused after a while and breaking the bank. September 26, 2019 at 7:01pm Reply

    • kpaint: Couldn’t agree with you more, and that goes for all perfume houses – not just Jo Malone. September 29, 2019 at 5:44pm Reply

  • Cybele: Hi Ulrika, No22 is one of my favourite fragrances but it is way heavier than No5 L’Eau but it could be nice for winter and occasions. Maybe you don’ need to entirely replace L’Eau but have on rotation so your nose can recover. It will be tricky to find something very similar but try ACCA KAPPA White Moss, Serge Clair de Musc – these lack the aldehydes and citrus though but you might enjoy them. A nice alternative might also be Chanel Cristalle, try both the EDT and the EDP, they are different scent (I don’t mean Cristalle Eau Vert). If you would layer one of the Cristalles with some Acca Kappa you would get close to L’EAU I guess. Also, check out the Hermes Jour line. September 27, 2019 at 7:55am Reply

  • Marika: Hi there, nose people. I am looking for help finding a new perfume as an indulgence for a big birthday. I haven’t bought anything in about 3 years for budgetary reasons, and I’ve avoided the perfume blogs to help resist temptation, so I feel a bit out of the loop. My budget for this bottle is $150 or less. I have always tended toward classic chypres, galbanums, incense, hay, and bone-dry woods, but I do stray into high floral and oriental ranges. I detest “froot” and “sweet” but have enjoyed a subtle apricot/peach/plum in a subtle supporting role. I want something lighter and more sheer than what I currently own, and perhaps something that can be worn year-round. Can anyone help with recommendations? I would so appreciate the help! September 27, 2019 at 8:48pm Reply

    • Aurora: Hello Marika: Glad you are going to treat yourself, happy birthday.
      Have you tried Bottega Veneta? It’s one of the best releases of the last few years, it’s a subtle suede, its flanker Eau de Velours which I own is also very good imo, it has an added plum note, not sweet and sickly.
      Also in no particular order, Chanel No 5 l’Eau, a nice lemon musk, very easy to wear, quite sheer but lasts, Lancome Jasmins Marzipane (lovely cosmetic cream-like), L’Artisan Parfumeur La Chasse aux Papillons (a light floral), l’Artisan Parfumeur Timbuktu, a vetiver incense, Annick Goutal Grand Amour and Guerlain Chamade (both have the galbanum you like) Annick Goutal Encens Flamboyant (like a Provencal church), Houbigant Essence Rare, a beautiful floral, light but lasts a long time, lily of the valley note, this one is not within your budget but I mention it because it’s the best recent floral I’ve tried. September 28, 2019 at 3:32am Reply

      • Marika: Aurora, thanks for your many suggestions. I’m glad you included some florals — I think that’s what I’m yearning for, really, and it’s a definite gap in my collection. I’m fighting the tendency to grab a new incense! I do have Bottega Veneta, and it has become one of my faves, so I’ll have to try the flanker. La Chasse aux Papillons and Chamade have been on my to-buy list for a long time; maybe this is the time to get serious about one of them. I don’t get to the department store much anymore, and I’ve given up on Lancome, but your Jasmins Marzipane recommendation has me curious. All the others sound wonderful, too. Time to get get sniffing! Many thanks for really getting my taste. September 28, 2019 at 11:03am Reply

        • Klaas: Ok, when sniffing out Chamade, put some Mitsouko on your other wrist 😉 A big birthday calls for a classic! Enjoy! September 28, 2019 at 1:59pm Reply

          • Marika: Klaas, my very favorite perfume for all time is Mitsouko! As a Mitsouko fan, what other fragrances scratch that itch for you? September 28, 2019 at 5:20pm Reply

            • Klaas: Gosh, it is a league all of its own, don’t you think? It doesn’t compare to anything, really! I’d say give Chamade a go….

              A lovely, lovely floral I can recommend is Jour d’Hermes. It is incredibly beautifull, and at a very good price. Victoria has written a lovely review you could check out. You might have enough left on your budget for a nice incense (Avignon or one of the other Comme des Garcons?) 😉

              Speaking of budget, did you check out De Nicolai? She sells 30 ml. bottles of all her fragrances. Cap Neroli, Cedrat Intense, New York, Vie de Chateau and Weekend in Normandy are highly recommended…..top quality and not sweet 😉

              Enjoy! September 28, 2019 at 5:50pm Reply

              • Marika: You are right about Mitsouko. I haven’t found anything that can compare. Thanks for reminding me of Avignon; many years ago I lived in that town for a spring, and I well remember the incense smells. And yes, I must check out De Nicolai’s current offerings — I’m a huge fan of Le Temps d’un Fete. (Has that been discontinued?!) September 28, 2019 at 6:10pm Reply

          • Marika: Klaas, it seems that Chamade is widely considered a springtime fragrance. Do you think it would fit other seasons too? September 28, 2019 at 5:58pm Reply

            • Sebastian: I’m not Klaas, but let me join in by saying that I know someone who has worn Chamade as her signature scent for several years, regardless of season. I have always loved smelling it on her. It is beautiful anytime. (I guess the spring time association comes from the Hyacinth in Chamade, but that is really no reason for not wearing it right now.) September 29, 2019 at 3:01am Reply

              • Marika: Thank you for taking the time to comment, Sebastian. These days, I’m very deliberate in my perfume acquisition, and this kind of feedback helps me with my decision. Chamade will be mine! September 29, 2019 at 3:15pm Reply

            • Klaas: Chamade is sunny and happy for sure, and it does have that spring vibe to it, but in my opinion it works wonderfully well to brighten up a winters day as well. And the eau de toilette is certainly light enough to get you through a summers day as well. So I agree with Sebastian, it can be worn all year around! September 29, 2019 at 1:27pm Reply

              • Marika: Klaas, thank you for responding. I am convinced that I need Chamade now. I’m also whipping through my old treasure trove of samples and found New York! I dabbed last night and it seemed a little too “barber shop” at first, but its evolution through dry-down was fascinating. I love the idea of the orange chypre, but I do think I need more floral action in my life right now. Thanks again! September 29, 2019 at 3:20pm Reply

                • Klaas: Ok, so happy, happy Chamade then! And if you ever want to persue that orange chypre vibe, give Azemour les Oranges a go…. September 29, 2019 at 6:11pm Reply

                  • Marika C Pineda: Uh oh. Just read Victoria’s review of Azemour les Oranges. Sounds amazing, and will have to get a sample, pronto. September 29, 2019 at 6:22pm Reply

                    • Klaas: Hahaha, oh oh, I hope this is not getting too confusing…for the record, A has been reformulated, and has less oakmoss in its current version. It is still very nice though.

                      I was having dinner with a friend yesterday, and she was wearing Private Collection. Wow, it is stunning, and I thought it had a lot in common with Chamade, actually. Though it is a bit more serious…Do you know it? September 30, 2019 at 5:11am

                  • Marika: I read Victoria’s review of Private Collection years ago, and have occasionally asked for it at the EL counter. They never have a tester. I like the idea of it and the era from which it sprang, so I’ll continue to seek it out. I have worked through the older ELs and appreciate them, but some have proven too strong. I have a bottle of Azuree, for instance, and it lingers on my skin for days. On the fourth day it’s finally tame. I had to return a bottle of Youth Dew, which was a total scrubber. It was like falling into a vat of Coca Cola. September 30, 2019 at 10:52am Reply

                    • Notturno7: Hi Marika, I find Private Collection so much easier to wear then Azuree or Youth Dew.
                      It’s a beautiful chypre. October 1, 2019 at 4:30am

        • AnnieA: @Marika, Jasmins Marzipane is part of Maison Lancome, or what I call Fancy Lancome. There are about 10 of them now, and about three time the price of their regular perfumes. If they are all as good as Oud Bouqet, the one I have, I would say they were also ca. three times as good… September 30, 2019 at 10:05pm Reply

  • Eudora: Hello! Simple, what do you think about Old Spice? Thanks! September 28, 2019 at 11:20am Reply

    • John Luna: Hi Eudora,

      Please see my notes above… If you’ve never tried Old Spice, it is a bit surprising, in that it bears a closer resemblance to ‘women’s’ fragrances like the classic YSL Opium or Lauder’s Cinnabar than to more traditional male ‘barbershop’ fare. It opens with sweet orange, cinnamon and clove notes, a very present peppery carnation, and dries down to a vanilla, musk and sandalwood effect. The original (vintage) came in a lovely opaque glass bottle which was phased out sometime in the early 2000’s I believe, sometime after Proctor & Gamble bought out Shulton, who used to make it. You can go down endless rabbit holes on men’s online shaving sites reading varied comparisons about vintage vs new vs Indian (India produces its own variant on Old Spice which some claim to be closer to the vintage), etc. The European version (‘classic’) still comes in glass and is a touch creamier and softer.

      It’s hard for all that to explain what Old Spice really feels like. The original formulation had a thoughtful combination of briskness and softness. The former was generated by a light spicy, peppery woodiness that recalled the smell of old wooden drawers (minus the mustiness), while the latter was produced by the vanilla and floral sweetness. Clove added a rugged touch and a sandalwood analogue (plus maybe some jasmine) kept the heart soothingly balmy. Rumour has it it once contained ambergris! I honestly think the sailor connotations were mostly advertising (it is really not a true ‘bay rum’ fragrance) but I still find them somewhat both inescapable and charming.

      I own a bottle of the vintage aftershave splash as well as a smaller vintage bottle something labelled a ‘cologne’ that actually is more like an EDP. Both have surprisingly good materials — what smells like a star anise in the opening and a truly rosy carnation note. I actually still find the current version serviceable if worn lightly (the clove and carnation notes in the new version feel a bit unsupported, as the complexity of the old anise/sandal combination is mostly missing.) If you are going to buy new, I would stick with the A/S splash and decant it into a sprayer, avoiding the modern ‘spray cologne’ formulation, which to me feels overloaded with both Eugenol (clove) and a dark, flat musk. The A/S also feels a bit more cedar-y and sparkling, truer to my sense of the original. Good luck! September 28, 2019 at 4:43pm Reply

    • Maria: Oh, Old Spice on a man is simply love. We always have a bottle of Old Spice shower gel – the classic version – in our bathroom and I love it when my husband use it and use it myself, too, sometimes. It makes me feel sofisticated and attractive. Just yesterday, giving a kiss to my 15 years old son I kept smelling him, that was so good, he told me he used the Old Spice.
      My husband also uses the after shave ocasionally and I can’t stop kissing him.
      Old Spice it’s just very very good and somehow never outdated. With Opium I have these days when I feel is outdated but not with Old Spice. September 30, 2019 at 6:06am Reply

  • Lydia: Eudora,

    I’m a perfume amateur too, and so glad to have discovered fellow enthusiasts online.

    I enthusiastically recommend the Turin/Sanchez A-Z perfume guide. It’s extremely funny, intelligent, detailed, and informative. Just be prepared for possible cutting reviews of your favorite perfumes (we’ve all been through it) and enjoy the ride.
    Their 2008 guide called Old Spice “a delicious Tabu-like oriental” and gave it 3 stars (out of 5) – not bad at all.

    I also enjoyed Neil Chapman’s extended childhood reminiscence of Old Spice in his Perfume book (Perfume: In Search of Your Signature Scent). I recommend that one too for entertaining and useful perfume information. September 29, 2019 at 4:11pm Reply

    • Lydia: Note: this comment was meant for the discussion above about discount online stores. For some reason when I’m posting comments via my phone, this site repeatedly bumps my comments down to the bottom of the list and out of the correct reply to the specific comment I meant it for.

      Reposting. September 29, 2019 at 4:16pm Reply

      • Lydia: PS That wasn’t meant as a site criticism, BTW. There’s probably some mysterious tech glitch in my phone’s communication with the blog program. Or maybe perfume-loving gremlins. September 29, 2019 at 4:34pm Reply

        • kpaint: But if that’s what the problem is, it would be great if it could be fixed. These posts are always a mess and very hard to follow.

          I’ll add that I always post from a PC and appear where they are supposed to. September 29, 2019 at 5:46pm Reply

    • John Luna: Nice! I had not heard of the Chapman book and will look for it. Thanks. September 29, 2019 at 7:42pm Reply

  • Marianne Bradford: Also, have you tried Prada Candy? Or l’Artisan Parfumeur Traversee du Bosphore (apple and nougat on a leater base).
    There is also Cacharel Noa l’Eau (apple and cassis on a long-lasting musky base) or Hermes Un Jardin sur le Toit (apple and pear).

    For a grown-up but still sweet almond try Acqua di Parma Blu Mediterraneo Mandorlo di Sicilia and Prada Infusion d’Amande or Serge Lutens Five o’clock au gingembre.

    For an elegant chypre Chanel Les Exclusifs 31 rue Cambon and Acqua di Parma Profumo (expensive) or more modern chypre like Miss Dior Le Parfum and Bottega Veneta.

    Hope this will help you a little bit in your search to replace Si. October 1, 2019 at 3:33am Reply

  • Diana: Picked up this gorgeous scent from my latest trip to Venezia. It’s divine!
    http://locherbermilano.com/en/prodotto/aamaik-eau-de-parfum/ October 6, 2019 at 11:22am Reply

  • Notturno7: Dear Aurora,
    I wrote you back yesterday but I see that it didn’t go through.
    I’m delighted that we’ll continue our correspondence when Victoria gets the chance to email you my contact info. No rush Victoria, I hope you’re having a lovely holiday.

    I’m waiting to L’Arpége extrait to arrive and wearing my new Parfum Sacre and En Avion. The weather is turning a bit colder in California during the night and it feels perfect for my new Caron scents.

    Thank you, Aurora and the lovely community here. I love reading this blog. 💕 October 10, 2019 at 2:37am Reply

    • Aurora: Dear Notturno:
      Victoria has already kindly answered and I now have your email, sent you a message yesterday evening, hope it gets to you without problem.
      It is cooler too in London and I chose an amber to wear. That’s one advantage of colder temps heavier perfumes seem just right. I will soon store my summer perfumes. October 11, 2019 at 12:11am Reply

  • James: I know it’s October, but hopefully someone can still help me: I’m looking for a signature scent (versatile, but not necessarily all-year). I’ve tried many, many Amber fragrances, thinking that was the note to go for, but to no avail. Scents I’ve enjoyed are Reflection Man by Amouage and Tabacco Toscano by SMN, the former being just a bit too clean, and the latter too intense for my taste. Terre d’Hermes seems decent too, and so do Mediterranean Neroli by Zegna (but only for summer days) and Bel Ami Vetiver (a little too oriental). I’m getting a little desperate with all these close hits, so I figured maybe some expert opinion could help.

    I find myself disliking spicy, fruity, and overly sweet, cologne-ish, or oriental or incense-based scents, and have an aversion to patchouli (at least if it’s dominant). I’m perfectly fine with unisex, but rose does seem a little feminine at times. And, lastly, it’d be even more ideal if the scent were niche. If anyone’s willing to help me out with this craziness, I’d truly appreciate it. October 24, 2019 at 1:27pm Reply

    • Victoria: James, I’ve opened a new thread today, so just repost your comment there. It will receive more responses this way. October 26, 2019 at 7:04am Reply

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