November 6, 2023

Nea, Byzantian Magic from Jul et Mad, Paris

Nea Perfume Review
Jul et Mad Paris Perfume

 Nea Perfume from Jul et Mad Perfume, Paris
Top Notes : Dates,  Artemisia, pomegranate, palm leaf, black pepper
Heart  Notes : Damask Rose, dried plum
Base Notes : Patchouli, cashmeran, vanilla, benzoin, burnt caramel, tonka bean, musk

A total stunner!

The nose behind this and all Jul et Mad indie fragrances is the couple Jul et Mad, aka Madalina. Their transatlantic romance is the foundation behind their perfume brand and it’s not surprising, that each scent in the line is notably romantic, as well as sensual and blended with both an old world and new world nod.

Nea is a gourmand floral which is to say it has foodie notes of caramel, plum, vanilla, burnt dates, tonka bean, a wee bit of fruit and then the warmth is uplifted by a hearty Damask rose and anchored with patchouli and musk. There is some black pepper in the mix but I can’t say that it is off-putting or even noticeable (in case you don’t like black pepper). It's not easy to create something sophisticated or unique in gourmand perfumes but in this case, the attempt is a full-out success. This is easily something that becomes your signature perfume and no one will guess what it is.

The concept behind this perfume is an attempt to restore in scent, the lost splendor of the luxury of the Byzantian, Imperial Palace or some say, Byzantine Church, or ‘new church’ (hence the name, Nea). The fragrance carries a sense of opulence but more so, a lighter, heady mix of fruit, caramel and florals in a way that is many layered, something that’s not easy in a gourmand perfume. The blending is so masterful that you never really can pinpoint the whole mix. Instead it’s a heady swirl, distinct but soft. If you like La Vie Est Belle or Flowerbomb but want something truly unique, more elegant, and innately beguiling, this is your lucky day because Nea delivers.

May 2, 2022

Vanille Noire
Eau de Parfum
Yves Rocher

This is a stunning treasure that is a third the cost you'd expect but it's part of the Yves Rocher brand and therefore the price point is, for a perfume of this stature, quite reasonable

This scent was created using the three  types of pure vanilla, which showcase this adored scent and feature all the dimensions of vanilla, played out on the wearer's skin. 

Absolute of Bourbon Vanilla, sensual, soft, with leathery accents
Absolute of Tahitian Vanilla, soft and floral
Absolute of Uganda Vanilla, a woody, spicy character
The fragrance is available in eau de parfum (1.7 oz, 50ml), roll-on (0.34 fl.oz), Shower gel and Body lotion (6.7 fl.oz). The nose behind this fragrance is Jacques Cavallier. Jacques Cavallier it should be noted is one of the world's finest and most legendary noses/perfume creators. Visit Yves Rocher

March 7, 2022

Sugarful, Floral Gourmand

Top Notes: Tangerine, wild strawberry

Middle Notes :
Pink Peony, cotton candy

Base Notes:
Musk, sandalwood

Some fragrances are sophisticated; some are sexy and some are playful or flirtatious. Sugarful by Michel Germain, the Canadian perfumer behind the iconic Sexual scents is in a league of its own. One spray is all it takes to feel happy – seriously – it is bursting with a champagne-like radiance that immediately makes you feel spring-like, even for a scent launched in winter. The decanter itself should win an award; it is a mini, vintage sugar jar, the type you see in diners  but tinted light pink. It’s 'sugar' to become a collector perfume bottle. 

The gift set, perfect for the holiday season,  also comes with a 8 mL roller-ball bonus gift of perfume you can tote in your purse or keep in your work desk drawer.

Overall this scent is for those who love sugar, vanilla and the usual gourmand notes. But the sweetness in Sugarful isn’t sweet in a cloying way. It is a fruity, effervescent cocktail that is addictive. You almost want to devour the scent. It literally sparkles on first spray and then settles into a strawberry-tinged cotton candy that will warm the frostiest heart. Stock up – the price is beyond reasonable and the scent is addictive.

This scent is available at most pharmacies, on Amazon and of course, via Michel Germain.

September 20, 2017

Smiley Daisy

There are so many aromatherapy diffusers, how do you choose a good one – or a great one? Reviews point to outstanding products and that is where Smiley Daisy emerged, when I researched aromatherapy diffusers.

First, a diffuser such as the Hibiscus Diffuser from Smiley Daisy does two things (well three, if you can pleasant fragrance a benefit). It diffuses therapteutic essential oils in same, diffused amounts and it gently wafts some pleasant humidity into the air – especially helpful during the dry, winter months.

The Hibiscus Diffuser is whisper-quiet, as it’s billed, and comes with 7-colour changing LED lamps. It’s pleasant oval shape of natural wood is am ambient addition to whatever your décor.

But the combination of lights, humidity, and fragrance ensures you get all the good of a few therapies including aromatherapy, aqua therapy and lights therapy. But it’s also worry free as it turns itself off automatically once it extends beyond it’s 6 hour usage. There are two mist settings of continuous mist or a 2-hour auto-shut off which is really perfect for later in the evening before you turn in. It easily fills a 200 square foot room with fragrance, using an AC 100-240 V outlet. Great in the bedroom but perfect for the den or home office or a small waiting room. If you have any issues whatsoever, there’s the comfort of the 180 day warranty and the company, overall, is exceptionally responsive. A great pick among the many options – with other models available.

August 13, 2017

Unexpected Victoria by Victorinox: Feminine, elegant, fresh and ....enduring.

Top Notes: Freesia, Plum, Black Currant

Heart Notes: Lily of the Valley, Viol.ets, Bulgarian Rose

Base Notes: Cedar Leaf, Sandalwood, White Musk, Myrr

Victoria by Swiss Army Victorinox is all at once startling and subtle. 
As first blush, it’s frocky, airy and elegantly yet girlish floral. And then it settles dance like an ingénue at the third or fourth dance. 

The heady freesia and fruity plum and black currant quiet down and the eternal prettiness of Lily of the Valley, Sandalwood, and White Musk move in; the cedar ensures it’s anchored in place and like a white corsage, created to last the full evening in fragrant freshness, Victoria goes from ingénue to leading lady. Great staying power and somehow still understated – a unexpected signature scent that will take you from daytime to early evening – and linger to midnight if need be.

July 11, 2017

Perfect Perfume Cabinet for the Perfume Collector : the Altra Aaron Lane Bookcase

Nothing is more frustrating for perfume collectors than never quite finding the right cabinet to display and safely store their perfume bounty. Next to tracking down your favorite (often discontinued) perfume, this has to be the most challenging missions.  As any perfumnista knows,  once you’re a perfume collector you quickly run out of space for your collection. Bathroom vanities, while a logical choice, are not ideal. Not only is there rarely enough space in the typical vanity but the humidity of that room compromises perfumes. Too much light and moisture can easily discolour a cherished bottle of Shalimar or otherwise change the fragrance notes of your last bottle of Chanel 5. But finally, I found my solution, a beautiful cabinet with glass doors made by called the Altra Aaron Lane Bookcase with Sliding Doors. They’re available from Amazon (link:

Although the Aaron Lane is designed as an all- purpose curio or occasional cabinet, it seems custom-designed for a perfumer’s collection. There’s enough room for one thing to both display perfumes and below, where the glass discontinues, amble storage for toiletries (manicure stuff for example). Inside, there’s room for double rows of perfume or place the perfume bottles in front with their beautiful packaging/boxes behind them. This is also a good visual clue of which perfume is which.

The glass shelves keep things out of direct light, preserving the expensive liquid treasures and keeps things dust free.

Featuring an exceptional design, the Altra Aaron Lane Bookcase is a practical and beautiful addition to your home even if you weren’t dedicating to perfume. Having tried many similar units and watched them collapse or they were impossible to put together to begin with, this Ameriwood cabinet is a true find. It’s easy to assemble, made with solid wood, finishing screws (versus nails) and the sliding mechanism of the doors outshines anything in its category.

This unit, which is also perfect as  DVD, CD cabinet (yes, some people still have those collecetions as well) or as a bookcase of course, includes 4 shelves behind the 2 sliding doors. There’s also plenty of storage space that is hidden below (where the glass ends) to keep messier or less pretty stuff away from view.

June 22, 2017

Rubino Perfume, Cheri Milani

Top Notes: White Rose
Middle Notes : Green Apple, Pear, Violet
Base Notes: Musk Vanilla

Milani Cultura is a lifestyle brand from Italy, by artistic fashion visionary Cheri Milaney. This exciting blend of fresh feminine design styles is also part of the concept behind the four-perfume niche fragrance offerings including Rubino, Perla, Ametista and Topazio.

Rubino is one of my personal favorites.
If you are a fan of Italian perfumes or cotton to scents that are vitally alive and almost 'watery' or juicy with fragrance, any one of the Cheri Milaney quartet will appeal.

Nea, Byzantian Magic from Jul et Mad, Paris

Nea Perfume Review Jul et Mad Paris Perfume  Nea Perfume from ...