Top 5 2017 Perfumes: Gabriella

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Gabriella

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Hiya Perfume Junkies!
A happy and fragrant New Year to you all.

Today I’m talking about my top five fragrances for 2017. These were not all new releases for the year – just the top perfumes that I discovered over the past twelve months. Last year was a bit of a watershed fragrance-wise: I visited Paris for the first time since falling down the perfumista rabbit hole and I also explored a bit more outside my white floral comfort zone. So what scents made the cut for me?

Top 5 2017 Perfumes: Gabriella

Melodie de L'Amour Parfums Dusita FragranticaFragrantica

Melodie de L’Amour by Pissara Umavijani for Dusita 2015

The heartstopper. I’d given up on finding another lush gardenia-centered fragrance when Tom Ford’s Velvet Gardenia was discontinued some years ago, but when Melodie de L’Amour hit my skin, it was utter devotion at first sniff. A buttery gardenia at the height of its bloom paired with sultry tuberose, jasmine and a hint of honey. This exquisite white floral was made all the more special due to the fact that I acquired my bottle in the city of lights.

First in Fragrance has €295/50ml

1996 Inez & Vinoodh Byredo FragranticaFragrantica

1996 by Ben Gorham for Byredo 2013

The vintage starlet. I didn’t expect to fall in love with 1996’s soft hush of iris and violet that’s powdery, delicate and slightly sweet. Just when you think the floral notes are the only things going on, an ambery leather lends a touch of old school decadence. It’s the scent of vintage luggage, fur stoles and black mesh pillbox hats paired with a slick of red lipstick.

Mecca Cosmetica starts at $187/50ml

Stilettos on Lex Jul et Mad Paris FragranticaFragrantica

Stilettos on Lex by Dorothee Piot for Jules et Mad 2012

The Parisian chic. I found Stilettos thanks to the lovely staff at Jovoy in Paris who included it with an enormous bunch of samples when I purchased my bottle of Melodie de L’Amour. Stilettos is a grown up fruity floral with a touch of 1980’s powerhouse about it. A bright plum transcends into a rich melange of violet, rose and lily of the valley tempered by aldehydes.

Jules et Mad starts at EUR22.50/5ml

Velvet Haze Byredo FragranticaFragrantica

Velvet Haze by Ben Gorham for Byredo 2017

The hippie luxe. I usually only like patchouli with rose, but this proved to me that coconut and patchouli is a pretty awesome combination. Here the patchouli is gauze-like, it usual pungent head-shop vibe has been stripped back and white washed, all pale and ethereal. The coconut is slightly salty in tone, giving the scent a tropical but edible quality.

Mecca Cosmetica starts at $160/50ml

Vetiver 46 Le Labo FragranticaFragrantica

Vetiver 46 by Mark Buxton for Le Labo 2006

The unexpected choice. Vetiver is about as far away from a big white floral as you can get, but this still enraptured me from the get go. A strikingly green bergamot gives way to piney incense, cloves and a touch of vetiver. A brooding scent that’s strangely comforting.

Mecca Cosmetica starts at $264/50ml

So, what were your top perfume picks for 2017?
With much love till next time!
G x

Saturday Question: What Perfume Do You Wear At Home?

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Portia

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Hello Fellow Fumies,

Every Saturday we have a Question, an idea purloined from Olfactoria’s Travels. Everyone gets to chime in with an answer, chat with other responders and it is a fun event each week. Taking sides never means taking offence and everyone keeps it respectful and light, even though we can sometimes trawl the depths.

The idea is you’ll see it on the weekend or chime in through the week. Hopefully you will come back and see if anyone has responded to your comment and you can reply to them.

Over 100 responses I will draw a $10 Surrender To Chance Gift Card.
Over 200 responses I will draw a $20 Surrender To Chance Gift Card.
Comment purposefully on yours or anothers comment & you’ll have a chance, random.org will draw on Friday.

Last Weeks Winner:

eMail me at (portia underscore turbo at yahoo dot com dot au) with the eMail you’d like me to send your Gift Card to.

Saturday Question:

While I was away I noticed a comment on one of our APJ posts and it got me thinking. I can’t find it now but the gist of the comment was “I only wear that fragrance inside my own home when I know I’ll have the house to myself.” CURIOUS! So then that led me to thinking about my own perfume wearing and I think there are some scents I tend to wear wholly and solely for my own enjoyment.

Also, because I associate a fragrance with someone or that fragrance has a very specific era.

Let’s not limit this to ONLY wear because you won’t wear it outside for whatever reason. What do you LOVE to waft around the house in by yourself, what brings you great joy just by having it there to spritz for yourself?

My answer:

Vintage Opium by Yves Saint Laurent

Yes, I know it’s absolutely gorgeous but Opium is my BFF Kath Mum’s fragrance. Yes, I loved it well before meeting her but I feel so naughty wearing her signature in  the world. Her 100%, doesn’t even own another perfume, signature. It’s getting harder and harder to find the good stuff for her but I have a small backup supply. Mum prefers to spritz so I’ve kept this original beauty for myself, you have no idea how bloody fabulous it smells.

 

Black Saffron by Byredo

This is a freak show but I love it. I do wear Black Saffron outside the house but then the magic of the ride is a bit lost on me. At home I get to really enjoy the way it works. My mate Pia Long expressed it best, “Starts out fruity floral and ends up road dirt.” Yep, nailed it. A very nice innocuous opening and you end up being tarred and tarmac. Nothing is quite like it.

Aqua Allegoria Lys Soleia by Guerlain

Guerlain hasn’t really done an Aqua Allegoria with such a personality since Lys Soleia. It’s a tropical ylang and lily combination backed by vanilla and a slight dry palm and salt air giving it interest and depth. I wear it around the house all year and it instantly gives a happy sheen to the day. Particularly good for making cleaning day smell beautiful.

My Saturday Question to you is:

What Perfume Do You Wear At Home?

 

La Selle by Jerome Epinette for Byredo 2016

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Portia

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Hey Ultra Rich Perfumistas,

These babies are expensive. So expensive my mind is having trouble grasping it. US$18.33/ml. Yes, you read that right. PER MIL.

Yes, I know they’re extrait but seriously, that is aspirational pricing out of this world. For the same price as 30ml of La Selle I can buy 2 x 100ml Serge Lutens with enough spare to buy a 7.5ml Byredo Roll On Oil in Mojave Ghost. So from a price point perspective they have set the bar extremely high, my expectations for performance, beauty and wit are through the roof.

La Selle by Byredo 2016

La Selle by Jerome Epinette

La Selle Byredo FragranticaFragrantica 

Fragrantica gives these featured accords:
Top: Black tea, cashmere
Heart: Leather, tobacco leaf
Base: Birch, oakmoss

Opening is that 21st century niche woodsy scent with the slight throat drying bite of tea. Within a minute the leather has made itself known and the familiar birch component, that dark charred wood and sweat smell, comes forth. La Selle keeps it friendly and welcoming and even the most birch averse will not be totally overwhelmed. Not listed but I smell honey and beeswax, there also is a soft fruitiness like banana peel.

La Selle is all luxury. If this is saddle leather it has never been on a horse and never known a horsemans bum. It has also been sitting in the shop for a decade because that new leather saddlery smell is gone leaving much more of the waxy resins and the fabric & stuffing.

PDI

La Selle is to die for. I have three large spritzes on my arm and it is sheer but surprisingly insistent. I am not allowed to forget that I’m wearing it. I get busy and halfway through a process it comes back and reminds me I’m wearing La Selle. It seems very sweetly resinous but I can’t pinpoint which ones. Also I’ve smelled the dry down, or very similar before, but I can’t bloody well remember where. It hangs around softly pulsing into tomorrow, dry but sweet, smooth and lightly creamy.

Aha! Light bulb moment. La Selle’s dry down is similar to Guerlain Samsara in dry down. Not exactly the same but boy are they related.

If I wore a single fragrance daily and had $550 to spend on 30ml of fragrance (about two to three months if I wear it exclusively everyday) then I would be seriously considering a purchase here. I’m not that guy though. Actually I’m being a bit silly. A CHANEL 15ml of No 22 is $225 currently so La Selle is exactly double that, I wouldn’t bat an eye at paying that for No 22 and I honestly think I’d get more wear from the Byredo.

PDI

Further reading: Colognoisseur
LuckyScent has $550/30ml and Samples

Would you pay that money for something spectacular?
Portia xx

Perfume Shopping Safari – learning how!

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TinaG

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Hi APJ!

A friend asked me for advice – she’d been finding her favourite fragrance was not smelling the same in her skin. She was looking for something new. Did I know anything that was similar which she could try?

So firstly we chatted about her signature scent. My friend has been using Dolce & Gabbana – Rose the One, which obviously is rose-centric but balanced out with lychee and peony. Instead of asking what she liked, we started with what she didn’t – this being any fragrance that was overly floral or sweet. But there’s only one way to find out – go shopping!

Perfume Shopping Safari – learning how!

So off we went on a perfume safari. We went to Myer / Mecca in Sydney city. Myer is open till 8:00pm which was perfect for dropping in after work. This excercise was also helping her to learn how to test & what to watch out for. When we got there I directed her to the Bottega Venetta and Narciso Rodrigues displays where I grabbed a handful of mouilettes. If I’m bulk testing, I’ll put a spray or two on paper & pop the end under the display bottle to let it dry a bit & keep track of what’s what. My nose lasts much longer (ie doesn’t get blown out / insensitive) if I’m sniffing dry paper, not wet.

Narciso Poudree Narciso Rodriguez FragranticaFragrantica

So then we sniffed everything in those two ranges over about 15 minutes – chatting & learning about first impressions as we went. We chose Narciso Pourdée Eau de Parfum to try on skin, and found immediately that my friends skin amps fragrances in a sour direction. Good to know.

She was super quick to learn about top notes, dry down, what she liked and within 1/2 an hour we split up & she worked her way around Myer, the Libertine section, and Mecca with some wonderful sales assistants. I felt a bit proud when I over-heard her saying ‘my skin amps sour’ to the nods of an SA. Yay!

Gypsy Water Byredo FragranticaFragrantica

We had loads of fun in our adventure. I unfortunately fell in love with Gypsy Water by Byredo while she was off gallavanting…. maybe I should have kept my hands behind my back.

Other fragrances she tried on skin were Lady Vengence by Juliette has a Gun, Arcana Rosa by L’Artisan Perfumer – Natura Fabularis collection, Lys 41 by Le Labo, and Gris Clair… by Serge Lutens. Both the JHAG and Le Labo were fantastic and the SAs generously gave her small vials to give a proper run through at home.

Lady Vengeance Juliette Has A Gun FragranticaFragrantica

Parfumo gives these featured accords:
Top: Bergamot, Lavender
Heart: Bulgarian rose, Moroccan rose, Patchouli, Hedione, ISO-E-Super
Base: Ambroxan, Vanilla, White musk

The next Monday she came back to me to say she loved Lady Vengence so much she went back & picked up a bottle of it. It’s a rose & patchouli scent and the quirky JHAG branding suits her so well. A win!

Have you ever had a friend find a new fragrance love through your recommendations?

Till next time,
Tina G xx

Skin Drenching Moisturising Potions

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Post by Trésor

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Autumn is officially in full swing in my humble little corner of the globe and the mercury has finally begun its lengthy descent into what I’m expecting shall soon be one hell of a winter. As much as I adore the delightful chill that comes along with such utterly magnificent sweater weather it also brings with it a far less welcome guest: dry, itchy skin; otherwise known as *the* bane of my existence. Luckily for me (and you beautiful readers, if you just so happen to enjoy a fragrant treat or two…or five) I’ve happened upon a number of exquisite lotions and potions that are both positively nourishing and olfactoriaely sublime and it would be my pleasure to share a few of my favourites with each of you.

Skin Drenching Moisturising Potions

Angel Perfuming Body Cream

Angel Perfuming Body Cream from Thierry Mugler

I’m fairly certain you’re well aware of just who Angel is, she needs no introduction. She’s the face that launched a thousand ships, the high-octane über-gourmand who’s DNA runs through an astonishing amount of fragrances which occupy the spheres of both designer and niche alike. Here, contained within her fantastically celestial flying saucer, her edges have been softened and entire demeanour expressed with a sense of fluidity and grace. Her holy trinity of neon candy floss, camphorous patchouli and sumptuous dark chocolate are still fully intact but wear closer to the skin, their rich languidity reimagined effortless sensuality in her altered form. Deeper, earthier yet somehow transparent; her beauty now bound to the Earth as much as it is to the stars above.

LAFCO Feu de Bois House & Home Nourishing Body Cream

Feu de Bois Nourishing Body Cream from LAFCO

The aroma of burning wood is one of my favourites in this entire world. Growing up on the East Coast of Canada where winters are considerably harsh and wood stoves are aplenty one comes to associate the fragrance of woodsmoke with their morning routine, the promise of glowing warmth and comfort after waking up to stone floors as cold as ice or conversely the abating comfort of curling up by to the fire in a sinfully cozy blanket and taking a glorious nap on a particularly chilly evening. LAFCO has captured the essence of these moment’s so beautifully, all the while wearing with an incredible ease and a great deal of comfort to skin which may be feeling a bit under the weather. Soft plumes of woodsmoke are joined by the delicate emerald hum of conifer resins that illuminate their sylvan radiance through the diaphanous haze. Utterly sublime.

Pulp Body Cream from Byredo

Pulp Body Cream from Byredo

There are certain accords in the realm of fragrance which one (myself, at the very least) may develop a particularly blasé attitude toward as time passes. One such example for me is the fruity floral, compositions of this nature truly wield the power to bore me to absolute tears but that, of course, is simply my own personal opinion. Every once and a while, though, something comes around and challenges my preconceived notions. It has me falling head over heels for a fragrance that by all accounts I should very much dislike. Meet Pulp from Swedish niche house Byredo, one of the very first fragrances to have put me in this precise position and caused me to reconsider my exploration of an entire genre. Pulp is absolute divinity, a symphonious amalgam of wildly nectarous fruits like succulent blackcurrant, crimson red apple and unbelievably juicy fig, overripe and on the cusp of decay. It’s absolutely magnificent and in my opinion even more enjoyable in the body cream, which lends a most sensual aura to Pulp’s already subversive leitmotif.

Are there any fragrant body creams which you enjoy breaking out when the temperatures begin to fall?

Until next time, my darlings.

Trésor xx

Byredo: Portia’s Favourite 5 Byredo

Hi Crew,

As you know I am now writing fortnightly for the crew at My Perfume Samples. Can’t express fully to you how proud I feel to be asked to write for them. Excellent crew with great prices and service. This week there is also a wicked Byredo GIVEAWAY!.

Portia’s 5 Byredo Favourites – My Perfume Samples

5-byredo-favourites

Please go check out my personal favourite Byredo fragrances. They all have special meaning through my own enjoyment or because they are my close friends fragrances. Byredo has excellent quality and interesting mixtures yet still retain the wearability that I love in a good fragrance.

Portia’s 5 Byredo Favourites – My Perfume Samples

While you’re there please leave me a hello so I know you’ve dropped by, your response is your entry into the GIVEAWAY.

Also, It makes me happy to see you all around the web.

Portia xx

November Sample Challenge Part 2

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Post by Gabriella

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Hello fumie friends!

Well, I am continuing the sample challenge set up by a friend on the Aussie Fragrance Network group on Facebook with some unexpected results. Read on to find out what happened.

November Sample Challenge Part 2

Wooden Fishing Tackle Box bdoutdoorsPhoto Stolen BDOutdoors

Sunday, November 10: One terrific by-product of the challenge is that it has made me organize my very disorganized sample lot. Well, the challenge and the fact that Mr M has very kindly bought me a fishing tackle box for said purpose. I categorized things alphabetically and am finding things that I had completely forgotten about. Feel very excited about continuing now and celebrate with a dab of Serge Lutens Bois de Violette. It’s beautiful, but there is just something in the Serge Bois series that just doesn’t agree with my skin chemistry.

In the evening, I fall in love with Amouage Interlude Woman. How on earth did I ignore this for so long? I adore the coffee, kiwi fruit and green goodness that seems to sparkle on my skin. I must get some more of this, so head off and order a decant of this, Amouage Fate Woman, Serge Lutens Santal de Mysore (another big bottle want) and thrown in some Castlebajac for good measure after trawling the site for a while. I’m excited about Castlebajac. It’s a clean almondy scent that I wore years and years ago in London and the thought of it reminds me of a great work Christmas party.

Monday, November 11: I cheat. I wear Lys Mediterranee. Not a sample. Difficult day at work and I needed something I knew and loved to comfort me.

Wednesday, November 13: Chanel Beige. Wearing this today and the sample of 31 Rue Cambon the other week has taught me something: I love Chanel top notes but not the dry down. Chanel Beige starts so luscious with frangipani and the sunshiny-ness of hawthorn, it’s gorgeous. But I want it to stay this way, and of course, last a little longer like all the Exclusifs, sans Coromandel.

La Collection Couturier Parfumeur New Look 1947 FragranticaPhoto Stolen Fragrantica

Friday, November 15: Oh hello lovely! I’ve had a sample of Dior New Look 1947 for ages and thankfully rediscovered it, due to new not-rummaging-around-in-drawers-for-half-an-hour-superorganized sample storage. This just FEELS like ME and I can’t get enough. It makes me pleased cos I’ve been quite cross at the House of Dior for mucking round with my beloved Diorissimo and Diorella. This just might make up for it.

Monday November 18: Bad, bad M. Have fallen totally off the wagon over the past few days due to sampling ennui. Maybe, just maybe, it is because I have been so busy and stressed at work that I haven’t had the headspace to enjoy my samples. I always need to be calm, relaxed and not half asleep or in need of valium and vodka to sample properly. In fact, I have been thinking that, when it comes to perfume, I need much less, not more. Decide to sell some more partial bottles.

 Isles Lointaines Keiko Mecheri FragranticaPhoto Stolen Fragrantica

Wednesday, November 20: Ok, so somebody must have hacked into my computer Monday or I was possessed by my alter ego as that stuff was just craaazy talk. But today, I had another issue: wanting, pining after a sample THAT I DID NOT HAVE. ARGH!!!! The-sample-that-I-must-have-right-now is Keiko Mecheri’s Isles Lointaines. I blame the boss’ PA. She asked for help with planning destinations for her honeymoon and asked if I’d been to the Amalfi coast and Positano in particular. Mr M and I went on one of our first romantic trips to Paris and Positano and Isles Lointaines was one of the samples I wore. I need to revisit those memories. NOW.

Pulp FragranticaPhoto Stolen Fragrantica

Saturday, November 23: Byredo Pulp. This is another one that’s just been sitting right there for ages, completely ignored, but yet, so readily available. I thought Dionne’s APJ review was terrific, but never got round to smelling this. It’s a luscious, full bodied citrus that just can’t help but make you smile. And even though it’s pouring with rain and has been wet for eons, I’m happy and warm with this on.

Samples are available from:
Surrender To Chance
Posh Peasant

So, how did you think I went with the second leg APJ peeps? Have I mentioned any favourites?

Love,
M