August 26, 2012

Unconditional Love, what's not to love?

Unconditional Love

Unconditional Love, the sequel to Philosophy's Falling in Love

Black Currant
Cashmere Vanilla

It’s hard to discern (from either the company or the scent itself) what else is going on in Unconditional Love other than Black Currant  and ‘florals’, a touch of citrus (I suspect) and some vanilla to round it all off. It is a fruity, predictably sweet fragrance that fades away quickly but while it is in effect, the effect is indeed: unconditional love. For some reason, both this scent as well as Philosophy’s Falling in Love produces an afterglow of well-being. Sweet it may be, but it’s not cloying and it has this happy innocence to it that manages to turn heads. It is, much like Clinique’s Happy Heart, an equally instant mood booster. 

August 25, 2012

White Linen, Best Aldehydes Since Chanel #5

Estee Lauder
White Linen

Top Notes:
Aldehydes, Citrus notes, Peach

Middle Notes: Rose, Jasmine, Lilac, Orris, Muguet, Ylang-Ylang

Base Notes: Cedar, Honey, Amber, Civet, Sandal, Tonka Bean

Fresh as cotton, White Linen is a salute to aldehydes or better yet: an extravaganza of aldehydes – a perfected fragrance note ensemble, most famously demonstrated in Chanel #5.

White Linen is fresh as laundry out drying on a summer clothes line with a breeze going through the bras and panties – which is to say – it’s fresh, clean and feminine in an innocent way – which is why it’s a great fresh perfume for a work day in a traditional office (do they still exist?). That said, there is something unique about the aldehydes which are in full force, alongside a generous bouquet of spring flowers. First whiff is laundry, soap, ferns and other greens. Then it warms up like a ray of sunshine in a emerald green meadow.

I don’t often encounter this or would admit it (in a woman’s perfume) but White Linen could probably be worn by a guy with great success. That said, it is a disservice to suggest this is a masculine perfume – it’s just amazingly fresh and floral – and in its own class – especially these days, when sweet and fruity, or patchouli rule – along comes suds, lilacs, bud roses, and a spray of green.

Classique X
Jean Paul Gaultier
Same old bodice bottle, fresh new scent .......

Top Notes: Mandarin and Bergamot
Heart Notes: Peony, Orange Blossom
Base Notes: Vanilla and Iris

I am a great fan of Jean Paul Gaultier’s various incarnations of Classique . This particular version is a bit airier and edgier than the others (especially the Classic Jean Paul Gaultier which is all powder, apricots and vanilla) and this could be partly due to having something as ethereal as Iris in the bottom notes. Suffice to say, this is a somewhat fresh take on a sweet scent. It is great for summer or for younger bodice-wear-ers (so to speak – and I speak of the decanter/bottle). But if you are fond of collecting every version of JP, this is still one not to be missed.

Youth Dew, Classic, Elegant, Still Doing Its Strut

Youth Dew
Estee Lauder

Classic, Complex and Feminine – Youth Dew is still a potion to be reckoned with

Top Notes: Rose, Jonquil (daffodils), Lavender

Middle Notes: Jasmine, Muguet (Lily of the Valley), Spices

Base Notes: Moss, Vetiver (lemon/lime), Patchouli
(With hints of musk, carnation, amber and benzoin)

Created in 1953, and classified as Oriental Spicy, Youth Dew was the first perfume launch of Estee Lauder and as it comes round to its 60th anniversary year, it is still elegantly marching forward with die-hard fans and new devotees alike. Why? It is complex, regal and yet still approachable; it is the epitome of what people think of when you think: perfume.

What first wallops you is the rose, and then the Lily of the Valley, spice (carnation?) takes over. Youth Dew creates an aura around the wearer (even a bit of drama: let’s be honest – it makes an entrance) and truly is one of those perfumes that take on a different personality with everyone who wears it. Shalimar, bless its heart, smells like Shalimar on everyone (and it is a stunner –no mistake) but Youth Dew (and it is an unfortunate name, alas) has a bit of je ne sais quoi to it – You can’t quite tell if it is a perfume or which one it is or if it’s not just the scent of a woman, freshly showered with soap and herself. Now that’s cunning!

August 15, 2012

Rock Me Summer of Love 2010

Top Notes:
Bergamot Blue Water Hyssop
Heart Notes: Geranium, Fressia
Bottom Note: Musky Rose Accord, Sandalwood

You would expect something called Summer of Love to be light and airy or light and watery and you’d be right – although in this case, Summer of Love is definitely ethereal but in a watery way.

In one spray, (literally and figuratively speaking) you get a sense of sun, sand, lapping lake water (versus sea, surf and beach water), among the florals going on here. Like Fairy Dance/Secret Wish, this fragrance is more of a daytime, early evening scent. It doesn’t linger and can be reapplied. It’s not a signature scent nor a sophisticated one but it’s dewy and light and a great one to return to from summer to summer.

Rock Me! 2012 by Anna Sui

Top Notes:
Williams Pear, Green Orange, Peach Skin

Heart Notes:

Honeysuckle, Jasmine Nat, Waterlily


Cedarwood, Amber, Vanilla

Strum a fragrance? Why not? It’s exactly what the guitar-shaped flacon inspires you to do.

Rock Me is not shrinking violet – this is a black-bodice sort of perfume (as the packaging suggests). It’s fruity and floral but has some watery, airy notes, and is anchored by woods, amber and the warmth of homey vanilla. It is an energetic affair – uplifting, fresh  and un-shy.

Fairy Dance Trips Light Fantastically

Fairy Dance by Secret Wish 2012

Top Notes: Tangerine, Mango, Pink Pepper
Heart Note: fresh Rose, Peony, Bamboo
Base Notes: Sandalwood, Vetiver, Vanilla

Fairy Dance has fruity things, somewhat tropically fruity things, dancing around, atop a base of light sandalwood, the green/lime notes of Vetiver and bound in the warmth of Vanilla. Somehow there is a tinge of melon going on (although there isn’t any melon to be found). It is a light, sweet and perfect summer, daytime fragrance for those 16 to 60. It’s one of those “I feel pretty’ fragrances.

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 t...