Blossom Love by Nathalie Lorson + Elise Bénat for Amouage 2017


Erica Golding


Hello everyone!

Have you ever been graced with a sample that you may never have had the chance nor motivation to try otherwise? Tonight, I am sampling a gorgeous decant of a brand new release, thanks to a dear friend’s incredible generosity and boundless kindness!!

Blossom Love by Amouage 2017

Blossom Love by Nathalie Lorson + Elise Bénat


Parfumo gives these featured accords:
Top: Cherry nectar, Rose liqueur
Heart: Ylang-ylang, Amaretto accord, Vanilla
Base: Tonka bean, Sandalwood, Cashmeran

Amouage Blossom Love definitely goes beyond the boundaries you may expect a pink floral to reside within. I can honestly say that I do sense every note disclosed, and they harmonize as beautifully as you may expect – but don’t be fooled, Blossom Love is not innocent nor simple! There is a twist!


The opening shimmers with the fresh, sweetly clean cherry blossom, while the luscious juicy-bright glow of the rose liquor hints at depths to come. On my skin, the note that makes this composition truly worthy of the name Amouage is the almond liqueur (amaretto accord). This amaretto features a strange bitterness that collides violently with the tropical ylang ylang, creating a storm front crackling with electric charge. The sonorous distant thunder that follows stays smooth and mellow, as the base notes vibrate a bit higher and feel more like middle notes. Velvety musk and honeyed tonka bean soften the edges, while the vanilla takes time to come forward.

Overall, on me, the amaretto note dominates even the blinding light of the jubilant, vibrant cherry blossoms. The effect is so weird and unexpected and fascinating, I just can’t stop inhaling this incredible creation!


Further reading: Perfume Posse
Libertine Parfumerie has the Amouage range
Amouage has £260/100ml

What is the latest sample you’ve come across that completely took you off guard and blew your expectations into the water?

Until next time, be well and stay scented!


Poivre 23 (London) by Nathalie Lorson for Le Labo 2008


Post by TinaG



Each of Le Labo’s City Exclusives line is sold in a single dedicated city, although they do seem to have become more accessible over time. I have a decant of Poivre 23 which is the London City Exclusive. I thought I’d give it a run through before I headed overseas, just in case I fell in love and desperately needed a full bottle.

Poivre 23 London Le Labo London Tube Publ;ic domain

Poivre 23 (London) by Le Labo 2008

Poivre 23 (London) by Nathalie Lorson

Poivre 23 London Le Labo FragranticaFragrantica

Fragrantica gives these featured accords:
Labdanum, sandalwood, patchouli, pepper, vanilla, guaiac wood, styrax, incense

Le Labo’s fragrance name is the note which is in the highest concentration in the fragrance, and the number the count of ingredients it contains. In this case, we have Poivre (pepper) and 23 notes.

One of the challenges I find with Poivre 23 is that it gives me olfactory fatigue very easily. The effect of this is that it appears to chop and change on each wearing, sometimes non-existent, other times nuanced and gorgeous, and occasionally the base of incense and amber is all I can smell. So it makes it difficult to write up but I’ll focus on one of the days where I didn’t get fatigue so badly and picked up some of the more fun aspects of the fragrance.

On opening, there’s a burst of pepper – I’m sure that I can smell both black pepper and a softer more fragrant version such as Szechuan or pink pepper. After the first pepper zing I get a chocolate note which may be patchouli-related as it does settle into a green headspace. There is a bitter dry white wood and an oddly buttery sweetness over the top. It is strange to smell something which is both dry and oily at the same time, like deadwood which has been seasoned & polished with fatty animal oils.

Poivre 23 London Le Labo pepper WikipediaWikipedia

At three hours on my skin the dry woodiness has taken on a subtle rubbery note which I suspect is imparted from guaiac wood, with a resinous birch underneath it. The whole thing has a sticky slippery leathery feel about it which I really enjoy.

At 5 hours this settles in to one of those skin scents which is like “my skin, but enhanced”. It is dry, woody, musky and subtle – very cuddly and comforting. There is light grey incense in the background and the styrax is a warm welcoming resinous amber with a touch of well blended vanilla in the package. This combination lasts well past the 8 hour mark.

Poivre 23 London Le Labo Loz Pycock Follow Driftwood Pavilion Bedford Square FlickrFlickr

Further reading: Perfume Shrine and Perfume Posse
Le Labo has 3 venues in London. Two stand alone stores and a Harrods desk.
Surrender To Chance has samples starting at $6/0.5ml

This fragrance is definitely not safe for enclosed spaces. My co-workers can smell it at least 5 metres away commented on the fragrance (complimented each time, thankfully). Will I pick up a full bottle when I’m in London? I don’t think so. I enjoy wearing it very much but it’s hard on my sense of smell – a wearing once every so often will be enough.

Have you tried Poivre 23, or any of the Le Labo City Exclusives?

Till next time,
Tina G

Library Collection Opus IX by Pierre Negrin and Nathalie Lorson for Amouage 2015

Don’t forget to enter this weeks GIVEAWAY COMPETITION!.<<JUMP


Post by Portia


Hi Crew,

You know how you love some brands, always try them even though the notes don’t really look like they’re going to suit you or if their last few releases were lovely but not quite you? I like to try everything Amouage release because, well, Dia, Gold, Lyric, Interlude and Ubar. Sometimes I worry that the Library Collection are a bit too high brow for me but…

Library Collection Opus IX by Amouage 2015

Library Collection Opus IX by Pierre Negrin and Nathalie Lorson


Library Collection Opus IX Amouage FragranticaPhoto Stolen Fragrantica

Fragrantica Gives these featured accords:
Top: Camellia, jasmine, black pepper
Heart: Guaiac wood, leather, beeswax
Base: Vetiver, ambergris, civet

Christopher Chong has based this scent on the story of star crossed lovers in La Traviata, based on La Dame Aux Camélias by Alexander Dumas. Particularly with the lead role played by Maria Callas in Lisbon 1958. Poor Maria Callas, seduced from keeping her voice pristine by becoming one of the most popular party girls of the ultra rich tycoons and entertainment industry of her time. From Wikipedia: The press exulted in publicizing Callas’s allegedly temperamental behavior… rivalry with Renata Tebaldi and her love affair with … Aristotle Onassis. …her artistic achievements were such that Leonard Bernstein called her “the Bible of opera” and her influence so enduring that, in 2006, Opera News wrote of her: “Nearly thirty years after her death, she’s still the definition of the diva as artist—and still one of classical music’s best-selling vocalists.”

Library Collection Opus IX Amouage lady_loch ashwood nurseries“Lady Loch” Photo Stolen Ashwood Nurseries

Mum loved camellias, our house was surrounded by both the japonica and sasanqua varieties and it meant the garden had flowers right through winter because different camellias flower at different times. We would pick the perfect newly opened flowers in the early morning by twisting the flower off the bush and Mum had a few shallow crystal bowls that we would float them in all around the house. We had about 20 different flowers and I loved them all, but I don’t remember them having any scent, except the wet green sharp smell of cutting their branches when we pruned the hedges.

SONY DSCPhoto Stolen Wallpapers

So, Opux IX? How does it smell for me? Green, woods and peppery and really clearly fragrant, it takes a while for the excitement of the open to recede and then a velvet smooth jasmine steals in: jasmine, smoke and honey that is animalic and a little breathy. Fresh breath though, clean mouth, maybe after drinking a big glass of cold water. We use the Enjo wood wax on our dining table and Opus IX has a similar luxurious balmy smell as the feeling 2 days after waxing the table feels. From arms length though Opus IX is pure jasmine with amber-ish overtones.

I do not get a heart of cacophony as other reviewers have, Opus IX melts into my skin and throws me sweetly honeyed woods and resins with soft rises as other notes come and go: the dry, salt and oily facets of vetiver, animalics that are inextricably linked with the honey in a healthy smelling purr: no poo, sweat, urine or hair in particular. A wash of warmth, those first sexy moments as you undress someone and you smell them, their laundry, their fragrance and their desire all at once for the very first time, intoxicating.

Library Collection Opus IX Amouage Dylan Hunter's point FlickrPhoto Stolen Flickr

I’m not the only fan of Opus IX, both TinaG and Scott have tried in on their skin with similar gasps of pure fumie pleasure. This is a winner.

Further reading: Colognoisseur and Non Blonde. You want the full story? Alembicated Genie
Libertine Parfumerie has $418/100ml
Surrender To Chance has samples starting at $4/.5ml

Do you have a fragrance house that is ALWAYS on your try list? Which one and why?
Portia xx

Autoportrait by Nathalie Lorson for Olfactive Studio 2011


Post by Jordan River


Autoportrait by Olfactive Studio 2011

Autoportrait by Nathan BranchPhoto Taken by Nathan Branch

Fragrantica gives these featured accords:
Top: Bergamot and elemi
Heart: Benzoin, incense and musk
Base: Oak moss, cedar and vetiver.

Boys, here is one for the 21st century man, not a flower petal in sight. The brief to the perfumer was a photo – create a fragrance inspired by the picture below. I first encountered this scent in December at World Beauty. When I trial a new scent I make sure not to read reviews or the even the notes on the packaging. February came and Autoportrait was still wafting through the scentmills of my mind. Back to the shop for another spritz. Back to the shop twice in a day. On my fourth visit the SA read out the marketing notes before I could protest. When I heard the words Nathalie Lorson I swooned as the attraction made sudden sense.

Autoportrait LUC LAPÔTRE olfactive studio

The photo that inspired Autoportrait. Photographer: Luc Lapôrte

Natalie created one of my best-loved ‘fumes, the warm masculine vetiver that is Encre Noire from Lalique. Autoportrait is Encre Noire released from the woods and flying above the clouds. The vetiver smells like the roots have been washed by a waterfall leaving a clear hint of something that is usually more vegetal.

Let’s take a quick side trip to the Moonlight Waterfall in Issan. Will you stroll with me? There is a path behind the waterfall. The waterfall will be an olfactory reference.

Sang Chan Waterfall Issan

Sang Chan Waterfall


Sang Chan waterfall

Sang Chan Waterfall

Sang Chan Waterfall, Issan, Thailand Photos: Jordan River

Back to Autoportrait: A tonal quality like a chime is what wafts from the bottle. Back in the office I sprayed this new delight. My Social Media Manager said “I’ve tasted that scent”. He was saying he had eaten elemi berries from the Phillipines. Resin from the elemi tree make up the top notes along with lemon and orange. We are seeing a lot of berry notes this season; the blackcurrant Co2 extract and absolutes hidden in The Enchanted Forest is another example of this direction.

After 30 minutes the scent becomes nice and dry. This is a skin scent meaning that you have to be reasonably but not intimately close to smell this. Your skin ++. Benzoin resin from Thailand, incense and oak moss or more likely a well composed synthetic substitute with a tiny drop of oak moss, are the other notes which all evaporate on me within 4 hours. No worries there, just top up.


Autoportrait is smooth with a clean feel but not in the laundry musk or American sense. Maybe clear is a better word. It’s not about the notes; this is a harmony of composition. A beautiful blend by a woman I admire.

Nathalie Lorson

Perfumer Nathalie Lorson

Love your work Nathalie. But this is not really work is it? This is an artistic expression which moves the vetiver story higher into the fragrant stratosphere. Next I am expecting vetiver in outer space.

Careful if you wear this: someone may want to eat you if they move close enough within the first 30 minutes. I know I like to taste everything.

Perfume Fridge

Center shelf, a welcome addition to the fridge

Autoportrait from Olfactive Studio is an EDP available in 50ml and 100ml.

Céline Verleure

Founder and Creative Director of Olfactive Studio, Céline Verleure

The photo is included in the box. My solution to flatten the curl of the cheap paper stock is to frame the photo for my office. At this price point ~ $US145, €85 (50ml) a higher gsm would be appreciated to carry this beautiful piece of art.

Further Information
Elemi is a berry tree from the Philippines. You can taste a dried version of the fruit at most Asian food stores.
Luc Lapôrte photography
Olfactive Studio website
Picturing Perfume – The Olfactive Studio story by Denyse Beaulieu

What Men Should Smell Like – Clayton Ilolahia

Olfactoria’s Travels – Olfactoria

The Non-Blonde – Gaia Fishler