Scent Diary: 18.9 – 24.9.2017

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Portia

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Hey Crew,

I’m home. Best place on earth.

What a holiday, heaps more India to share. More friends, fun, food and especially fragrance.

Scent Diary: 18.9 – 24.9.2017

Monday 18:

OK, it’s Monday morning and I’m in Alwar, Rajasthan, India. Can’t sleep because Australia is having a non-binding postal vote about Equality, Marriage Equality to be specific. The hate, lies and vitriol spewed by the NO camp has me nearly hyperventilating with rage and a resurgence of the sinking feeling that comes from external bullying (the internal can be pretty bad too) that I know so well from a basically sunlit youth full of sly, snide, confrontational, half-heard, whispered, shouted, aggressive, implied and ultimately violent homophobia.

If you are Australian and have not yet voted, PLEASE VOTE YES.

FAST DAY!! I know, bet you never thought you’d read me saying that? Well, Varun fasts twice a week, he’s allowed juice and fruit till sunset. We added masala chai to the list and some peanuts for me at around 6pm because I was about to eat the furniture.

Varun and I did some more shopping today. Some final gifts. We sat in the shade drinking soda and watched the world go by for a happy 20 minutes.

Wearing Oliver & Co Vaninger today. It’s a freaky, weird ginger masala chai scent and smells SO GOOD in the Indian heat.

Dinner was with Varun, Mummy and Pappa and Achal (their older son). The food was wonderful. They are a pretty quiet family when they’re together so conversation was happily sporadic.

Afterwards I was ambushed with an after dinner party. The LAST thing on my list of things to do. There’s a particular person at these events who tries to negatively engage people, you know opens with a derogatory comment. This years opening gambit was “Hello, you got so bald.” I shook his hand, thanked him, turned on my heel and walked out of the party. Varun didn’t even have to be asked, he just handed me the car keys and off I went. The bully came after me saying, “Aussies aren’t such wimps” and equally endearing things. Finally he came up behind me, grabbed my shoulders and said in my ear, “Surely I haven’t offended you.” My reply was to shrug him off, say, “Yes….. Don’t touch me” and get in the car, locking the door. The usual going and froing of host and bully entreating me to stay. Nope. I wasn’t angry, passionate or riled, “I am nearly 50 years old. I don’t need to be around and deal with assholes. Thank you for the invitation and hospitality but I’m not interested in joining you. Please take this time to teach your friend some manners. Thank you, goodbye.” Varun got in the car and we drove away.

I didn’t stand up to a bully but I did call his bad behaviour and refuse to engage without raising my voice or even blood pressure. It felt, and feels still, powerful in resistance. Right now I’m proud of how it went.

Now, I’m going to read for a bit and then hit the hay.

Tuesday 19:

It’s my last full day in India. Varun and I had breakfast together, he came to my room and we drank lashings of masala chai with jam toast and fruit. He has some catch up work to do so I’m taking my Kindle and going down to the garden to read in the sun.

When I got back to my room I really wanted some fragrance so chose Neela Vermeire Creations Mohur. The most precious beauty of her collection for me. A perfect fit coming in hot and sweaty, it gave the fragrance a whole new lived in feel.

Painted some signs for the hotel, there were about 7 in all but these two are the ones I really loved.

Varun and I went to a nearby hotel, one of the Neemrana group, for lunch. It was a buffet and the selection, quality, taste and presentation were super fabulous. There were enough waitstaff for one per person because the restaurant was pretty quiet. Can’t compliment the experience enough. Dessert was this incredible dish, like deep fried cookie dough, that you have with ice cream. Words fail me…..

At night we hung out at Varun’s hotel. Very chill last night. We ate, chattered and finished off the signs. The night was tinged with the sadness of me leaving tomorrow but still fun. We are so comfortable with each other nowadays that some thinking time between sentences is expected.

Wednesday 20:

Woke up, showered and drenched myself in vintage Miss Dior parfum.

Varun took me for my farewell and Birthday lunch. He’s so funny. PIZZA HUT! My first fast food since arriving in India. It was bloody delicious and he was so chuffed with himself for thinking of it. How could anyone fail to love someone so wonderful?

Then he took me shopping for my Birthday Present. I protested but to no avail. He was determined, and that happens so rarely that I let him have his moment. It was sweet and lovely. I will wear my gift and think of him every time.

On the road, four hours from Alwar to Delhi Airport. Varun and I said our goodbyes at the hotel and now I have a driver who will drop me. As the miles fly by I’m reflecting on what a perfect two weeks we have had. So lucky to have this guy still in my life after 17 years as a lover and BFF.

Woo Hoo! Even though I’m flying China Southern Economy because they are star Alliance and I am Morning Calm with Korean Air I get preferential treatment! That means Priority Boarding and access to the Delhi Airport Business Lounge. Meaning I get free food and drink, have a comfortable seat and super clean toilets while I wait.

I might have done some Duty Free Shopping. I clearly have a problem but I WANTED THEM ALL!!!

CHANEL Antaeus Deodorant Stick, CHANEL Coco Shower Gel & Soap, Gucci Absolue, Narciso Rodriguez EdT and the NEW Guerlain Les Absolus d’Orient 15ml Travel Set

The girl at the Check In desk could not have been sweeter or more helpful. She even gave me a window seat with extra leg room!!

Thursday 21:

Arriving in China next morning there was a girl waiting at the gate with my name on a board. You have to HURRY only 12 minutes till your plane goes. SHIT!!!! She grabbed me and ran, like a marathon running ex-paramilitary sergeant, to the Transfer Gate. Here she ran me past the lines to the Special Needs line, pushed past a group of wheelchairs, and got me to the front where they stamped my passport. Then she RAN me through security, screaming at everyone along the way, and along to our gate another 500m away. I was puffing and blowing like a steam train by now. We get to the gate and I’m like, “Do I have to run down the gangway?” She looks at me and says, “I’m so sorry. Wrong information. One hour twelve minutes. So sorry.” We look at each other and basically collapse laughing, I can’t even breathe at this point. Hilarious. So I take a seat and get my breath back before boarding at a much more dignified pace.

China Southern came through again with an exit row.

We get into Sydney about 30 minutes late at 8pm. Jin is already waiting at the exit gate for me. I get quickly through the electronic passport control and am only the second from our flight at the Baggage Carousel. So I wait, and wait, and wait. There are three bags left on the carousel, none mine. I go to the Baggage Desk and ask. “Oh yes, your luggage did not get on the plane. It will be coming tomorrow.” OK, no biggie. Poor Jin has been waiting at the gate for nearly two hours though so he is less than impressed.

That first hug, when you get to bury your face in their neck and smell home. NOTHING on earth is so good. It’s only been two weeks but I clearly missed this wonderful man.

Doing stuff around the house till nearly midnight and decided the thing I wanted most in the world was a Bubble Bath. Lalique Homage Shower Gel became my bubbling juice. It’s a wonderful masculine scent and it was the perfect balm to 24 hours of travel.

Friday 22:

YAY! I’m home. Jin has a couple of days off and we can hang out together. Slept in till 10am and woke up to a perfect spring sunshiny day. The smell of him cooking mo-mos was all it took to rouse me from my slumber. No one on earth makes them better. A quick swipe in soy sauce and I’m in heaven. Perfect welcome home meal.

I have caught a bit of a throat infection somewhere along the way and am coughing up some spectacular globs of green and yellow.

ALSO, I spend nearly 3 weeks in India eating street, home and restaurant food. My body loves it and is doing perfect poo. Come home for 24 hours and I’m shitting soup. What is wrong with me?

There was quite a bit of perfumed box mail on the table for me when I arrived home. Here’s a pic of the haul while I was gone. Guerlain Mitsouko EdT, Korres Japanese Rose Shower Gel x 2, Bal A Versailles parfums 30ml & 7ml, Tabac Original Shave Soap refill

Today has been a lazy day hanging around the house with Jin, catching up here on the blog and drinking litres of tea with honey & lemon, hoping to break this cough up.

Wearing the furry, sweet, skanky goodness of Bal a Versailles EdT & parfum. I smell so freaking gorgeous.

We went to Outback Steakhouse tonight for Blooming Onions and STEAK! It was bloody delicious. I’m so full that my tummy physically hurts. OwOwOOOOWWWWWWW but happy.

Tonight at 8.45pm the luggage arrives from the airport. Couriered to my home. Thank you China Southern Airways and Sydney Airport Baggage Department.

Saturday 23:

Good morning Saturday. I’m so excited. The dogs are coming home today! YAY! I love having Paris around to cuddle and walk. The house feels a little empty without them both.

The Pharrell Williams Girl bottle jumped out at me today screaming WEAR ME! I did. Longevity is only very short but it’s fun to respritz. Amusingly Jin asked me if I was wearing Joop!

YAY! They are back and cuddles were in order.

It’s 35C today! WOW! Bloody hot out there.

This afternoon Kath & I went for our first swim of the season. It was pretty cold but after a few seconds my body attuned and I was in for a short while, did a couple of laps and got out. As I was drying myself off we realised that my Tigers Eye bracelet had broken so in I went again and hunted beads, very hard when you’re as blind as I am.

Home to change and thought I’ll just lie down for a minute with Paris. OOOPSIE! Woke up hours later. Missed out on seeing Phil and it was already time for dinner. Jin and I had Chinese at a BarBQ place he’s wanted to eat at for ages. The place smells dirty and the food is presented in varying shades of brown, no colour or excitement. I will say that it tasted delicious, seriously great. He will have to go there alone next time or do take away.

I’ve got this weird phlegmy cough. Jin has made a Tupperware container of his fave Korean remedy. Sliced Lemon, Lime, Dates and Ginger. Steep in water with or without tea, add honey to taste.

Before bed I drank two jugs of the remedy, a bunch of water and spritzed Neela Vermeire Creations Rahele. Who doesn’t feel better when smelling of fruity osmanthus leather? Goodnight all.

Sunday 24:

GAWD! I’m so sick. Nose running uncontrollably. Coughing like a 70 year old chain smoker. Sweating.

BLEAUGH!!!

Tried to get a fill in for work tonight. The girls are busy. Going in feeling like shit.

Had a super hot bubble bath in LUSH Rose Jam, used Amouage Dia lotion and Parfum.

 

OK, enough about me. How was your week? Anything fun, fragrant, food or friend related happen?
Share, we love it.
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

Narciso Rodriguez For Her EDP by Christine Nagel + Francis Kurkdjian for Narciso Rodriguez 2006

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Post by Anne-Marie

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Curse you Narciso Rodriguez! Why are your fragrances packaged and named alike? Brand cohesion is one thing, but have you no sympathy for your customers (or their hapless friends who try to buy for them)?

Well, applying my attention to the list on Fragrantica, I realised that the 31 listed NR fragrances are all just variations on just four pillar fragrances: For Her, For Him, Essence, and Narciso.

Got it? You’re welcome.

Today I’m going to cover NR’s second release, Narciso Rodriguez For Her EDP. This is the one with the PINK bottle and the BLACK box.

Narciso Rodriguez For Her EDP 2006

Narciso Rodriguez For Her EDP by Christine Nagel + Francis Kurkdjian

nd.14319Fragrantica

Fragrantica gives these featured accords:
Top: rose, peach
Heart: musk, amber
Base: sandalwood, patchouli

Portia has done a stellar review of the original EDT, but there is a difference in emphasis in the EDP. Intimate and sensual, both are musky florals with very clean (fractionated) patchouli and amber. On me the sillage and longevity of both are just moderate.

However, I remember the EDT (I’ve sold my bottle) as sharper and drier – more masculine perhaps – than the EDP. What distinguishes the EDP for me is a prominent note of peach, juicy but not too sweet. This is what I hoped Lancome’s Tresor would be like if it did not collapse into a sickly sweet, artificial mess on me.

Narciso Rodriguez – Fall 2016 – NYFW

However, not everyone seems to particularly notice the peach in NR For Her EDP. The fascination with Narciso Rodriguez fragrances is that there are wide variations in how people perceive them. You might love the EDP but utterly disagree with my take on it.

While musk is the common accord in both concentrations of Narciso Rodriguez For Her, people nevertheless react differently to other notes and accords. They will detect more or less rose, more or less amber, more or less citrus, more or less orange blossom (I get none), and so on. Musk anosmia means that some people can hardly smell them at all.
For years I eked out a large decant of the EDP. Mostly I wore it when travelling for work. Its casual but professional style was perfect for meetings, but even better was to save it for the evenings when I was in the hotel and at could at last take a shower and relax. Any parent of young children will understand the heaven of being alone in a hotel room with the bathroom, room service and the TV remote entirely at your command. NR For Her EDP easily complements moments of simple enjoyment such as this.

Narciso Rodriguez for Her Eau de Parfum Hotel PixabayPixabay

Further reading: Perfume Shrine and Perfume Posse
FragranceNet has $78/50ml before Coupon
My Perfume Samples has from $2.50/ml to $7.50/5ml

I’m now the possessor of a partial bottle of the EDP, and very happy I am too.

How about you? How do you go navigating the Narciso Rodriguez line? What are your ‘simple pleasures’ perfumes?

 

 

N.B.: If you click and buy from the My Perfume Samples link I get a kickback

Narciso Rodriguez For Her EdT by Christine Nagel and Francis Kurkdjian 2004

Hey Happy Huffers,

This is one of my favourite go to scents. It seems to be a good fit for almost anything. Dressy, casual, close or far. It never interferes with what I’m doing or those around me yet it also manages to garner compliments often when it gets some public skin time. And while that happens a bit, with no other fragrance is it so regular. I have also got other people in my orbit hooked on its luscious softness.

Narciso Rodriguez For Her EdT 2004

NarcisoRodriguez FragranticaPhoto stolen Fragrantica

Fragrantica gives these featured accords:
Top: African orange flower, osmanthus
Heart: Amber., musk
Base: Vanilla, amber, vetiver

Whenever I get the first waft of Narciso Rodriguez for Her I immediately feel light, lovely, happy and thankful that I am a perfumista and that Narciso Rodriguez for Her came into my life. It’s a little like the feeling as you take off in an airplane to go somewhere lavish and interesting. SWOOSH up my nose flows a translucent shimmer of what I always thought was a sweet rose but it turns out to be African orange flower and osmanthus! Oh well, I’ve been wrong before. The musk is already there, soapy and sugary like musk sticks that we ate as children. I still eat them sometimes! Jin can’t eat them because to him they are exactly like eating cheap Korean soap from his youth.

The amber I get on my skin is sweet and dry, no bitterness just a creamy vanillic amber that presents as smooth and cool as the big fat opaque pale eggs of low grade amber that I find so distinctive and beautiful in jewellery. Together the whole blends during the heart to give the impression of beautiful skin fresh from the pool, just dried so still damp but slightly salty and the blood is pumping so the flesh is warming quickly. I find the heart of Narciso Rodriguez for Her to be nearly narcotic in its peaceful pleasureability. I swoon with a Stendhal syndrome effect because it’s so damn lovely. When I wear Narciso Rodriguez for Her I sometimes wish I could be a one frag person, don’t worry it doesn’t last.

How did they get it so sheer and so hefty? Sillage is fabulous and the scent bubble is too yet it’s never overwhelming and I think it a perfect working scent, as well as the sexy come hither scent, and one you can pick the kids up from school in. It seems there is nowhere that would be inappropriate. No wonder this has been such a popular, game changing scent.

imagesPhoto Stolen sevanya

Further reading PerfumeShrine takes you through all the variations available and BoisDeJasmine contrasts it with sister scent SJP Lovely
FragranceShop has 50ml/$48.50 after discount
MyPerfumeSamples starts at $2.50/ml up to $7.50/5ml

Have you spent some time with Narciso Rodriguez fragrances? Do you have a favourite iteration?

Thanks for wandering through my fragrant musings,
Love to you and yours,
Portia xx

Narciso Rodriguez Spring/Summer 2013