“My CHANEL Ballerinas”

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Portia

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Woo Hoo!

Sometimes you need to buy the most extravagant of its kind and then wear it like it’s from Target. That has been a sideline motto of mine since fashion school.

What’s the use of having the best if you don’t get the enjoyment of using it, living in it and ultimately wearing it out?

Portia xx

“My CHANEL Ballerinas”

Spring-Summer 2017 ballerinas

Skin & Eyelashes: L’Oreal + Clinique

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AF Beauty

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Hello again APJ Beauty Addicts!

In a post from waaay back when, I wrote about finding Clinique’s Custom Serum – still one of my top beauty products. I am so enticed by the novelty of the new and the promise of each new product that I rarely rebuy something because either it didn’t deliver what it promised or something else promised more.

Skin & Eyelashes: L’Oreal + Clinique

In the few exceptions a headline act is Clinque’s Custom Serum. So, when Clinique released a new product I was a little bit excited and hoped to look 20 years younger. This new product was Turnaround Revitalising Oil.

Clinique

The oil is a very interesting texture – the thinness of water rather than a cooking oil, but still somewhat oily. I say somewhat because it is peculiar in that it absorbs very quickly on plain skin while also leaving a very slight oily feel. Weird. As with all Clinique products it has no added fragrance – I get it. But in my heart, I want things that smell nice – and this smells like a dirty oil extracted from an engine – which is not overly enjoyable for one’s face.

Added to the sadness of the smell is also the lack of information as to how you’re supposed to use the product. I had determined that I should use it in the same manner as Clarins’ oils – I’ve also tried adding a bit of the oil to my moisturiser – but truth be told neither method led to my immediate youthfulness but I am hoping it will provide that boost that skin needs through winter. Verdict – undecided.

Another feature from a previous post was my search for tubing mascara – if you recall, I had found Australia had a MAC one and I’d toddled off to purchase but was persuaded at the last minute to try another, the SA promising a smudge free wear. To be fair, she was entirely truthful in that it has never smudged despite numerous trips to the gym and sweating like I’d invented it. But it took a purchase (via ebay) of *actual* tubing mascara to truly understand and appreciate the tubing phenomenon.

Heinemann Duty Free

I bought L’Oreal’s Double Extend Beauty Tubes Mascara (sometimes Double Extension Beauty Tubes) – NOT to be confused with Double Extension Renewal Lash Serum. Yes, helpfully, they have several of very similarly named mascaras – but basically, you want the maroon coloured one actually called Beauty Tubes. You start with the white end which extends (clue in the name) then switch to the black which tubes around the lash. And it wears very well and also doesn’t smudge. I’ve really enjoyed using this, not least because it is as promised, very easy to remove with regular facial cleanser/warm water. The only slightly perturbing moments are the appearance of what looks like small spider legs on your flannel, but it’s a small hurdle for simple, painless, smudge free mascara removal. Keep an eye out for it in Duty Free/ebay/overseas. I’ve never found it in Australia, sadly.

Until next time; may your lashes be smudge free.
AF XXOX

Soulle Ambar by Shelagh Foyle for Floris 2013

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Portia

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Hey there crew,

Libertine Parfumerie sent me their Winter 2017 Season Update. I have a bunch of some of their new-to-Australia and brand spanking new stuff to look at. I think that they have newly brought Floris onboard in 2016 as one of their houses so that’s really exciting. Not having spent much time with the brand, except a quick sniff through in Fortnum & Mason last year, it will be good to get to know them better. I’m pretty sure that Floris are not marketing to me personally as a consumer, the brand seems a little safe and buttoned up British but I will be happily shown to be wrong.

Soulle Ambar by Floris 2013

Soulle Ambar by Shelagh Foyle

Fragrantica

Fragrantica gives these featured accords:
Top: Bergamot, galbanum, pineapple, mastic/lentisque
Heart: Pink pepper, geranium, jasmine, mellow/sweet clover
Base: Amber, vanila, musk

Soul Ambar is a new one to Australia and as I love amber in fragrance I think Paige from Libertine thought it might be a good place for me to start. Let’s see….

Woo Hoo! Sweet citrus with a pineapple hit is a wonderful, fun, uplifting opening the segues beautifully into smooth, glossy green galbanum. The fruits don’t leave exactly but become something harmoniously part of the green.

A burst of pink pepper, a real, fun, pepper grind of it. While having that fun pink pepper fizz it comes along and dries Soulle Ambar out. The fruit punch is still extant but now playing chorus with the bouquet. Flowers come together in a softly cool florist melange that gives me thoughts of fresh cut peonies and greenery.All this action has taken place in under half an hour and I feel the real heart has arrived. Without being mean the heart reminds me of the opening of some of the Tocca perfumes. It has that similar wet non floral bouquet, but here it’s in the heart and lasts very effectively.

WikiCommons

Soulle Ambar is a floral green scent through the heart. Nothing groundbreaking or sensational but a comfortable, floral, green that feels beautifully crafted and with enough of a story to have some interesting light & shade.

At about the 40 minute mark the amber/vanilla comes through as a light undercurrent of warmth, it takes centre stage but Soulle Ambar maintains a fresh green hint till I lose the scent completely.

I don’t think this is made with die hard perfumistas in mind. It’s a fine fragrance, smells good and would be an excellent choice for a person whose main aim is to be prettily fragrant. I could imagine buying it as a gift for my non perfumista friends and them using it solely as a spritz & go all day scent till the bottle was empty and then buying it again.

Flickr

Libertine Parfumerie has $179/100ml and FREE Australian Delivery
First In Fragrance has €72/50ml + Samples

Have you spent any time with Floris fragrances? Any that you like, love, own?
Portia XX

Eiderantler EdP by John Biebel forJanuary Scent Project 2017

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Erica Golding

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Hi all, I hope you are enjoying a gorgeously fragrant day wherever you are!

Me, I’m having a woodland faerie princess kind of day. My friend John graced me with a sneak preview of his upcoming releases for January Scent Project, and one in particular has cast a spell on me:

Eiderantler EdP by January Scent Project 2017

Eiderantler EdP by John Biebel

January Scent Project

January Scent Project‘s notes:
Lavender, green leaves, moss, pink pepper, lavandin, champa leaf, ivy, elemi, fir cone, hay, oak wood, cashmere, vetiver, musk

Eiderantler is summarized as an “ivy fougere,” and even the hue of the liquid is fern green. I have been on a real fougere kick lately. When I spritzed this on a test strip, I was immediately captivated and intrigued. Onto my skin it went!

The opening of Eiderantler glitters with pink pepper and a particularly green-toned lavender. The grassy and herbal notes glow brilliantly, but they are elegantly tempered by the velvety moss and hay. The composition is fresh yet rounded, conjuring emotions of peaceful optimism.

January Scent Project

The end stages drift gently like morning fog, and I particularly notice the softness of the cashmere, champa, and musk.

It’s quite evident that Eiderantler is heavy on the naturals because of the stunning sincerity it evokes. It achieves an air of simplicity overall, but reveals complex choreography as the stages evolve on the skin. I’ve never smelled anything that compares to this scent. I think that many fragrances out there aim for this effect, but Eiderantler is totally unique and fascinatingly balanced. To me, this is what an elf from the Tolkien universe would smell like!

January Scent Project doesn’t have it quite ready for sale yet but SOON

Does perfume ever send you into a fantasy land? What’s the latest scent you tried that transported you instantly?

Much love until next time,
Erica

Scent Samples: Love & Loss

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TinaG

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Hi APJ,

My fragrance collection had a bit of a rough ride last year. I packed up my house & put everything in storage in May while I travelled overseas for 7 weeks, and then it stayed in storage while I found another place to live. It wasn’t until September 2016 when I got access to everything again. The full bottles and decants were fine, but there was substantial loss from my samples. This varied from leakage & evaporation, to label text disappearing.

Scent Samples: Love & Loss

Moral number one of this is: samples are intended to be used. They aren’t there for you to build a mini-Osmothèque style fragrance library, the vials aren’t that robust at the best of times. Use them, make notes, talk about them, and if you fall in love… buy the bottle.

So, I’ve sorted my samples, laid them out, & thrown out the empties. The ones which have leaked but still have juice left in the vial have been put aside for testing. So today I grabbed two as I walked out the door to give them a run through. These are Fueguia 1833 – Don Giovanni, and Castillos.

And – do you know what? I looked up Fueguia 1833’s current catalogue, and these two aren’t listed. Some time back I purchased full sample sets of Destinos and Special Projects, of which Castillos and Don Giovanni and were included as at March 2016. Now in March 2017, a year later, they’re no longer available – which leads us to moral number two: things change. What was available 6 months or 12 months ago, may be discontinued and therefore so much more difficult to access. And if you fall in love, you’re screwed.

So what do I do with these two samples? Do I treasure them,put them in tightly packed glass vials or on the shelf? I think we need to go back to moral number one: samples are intended to be used.

Here’s what I think of both:

Fragrantica

Castillos – Destinos collection

Notes: Tuberose, Jasmine, Mate.
This is weird. The mate isn’t dried powdered green tea, it’s fresh and floral and slightly rotten, with the tuberose and jasmine rounding out the overall indole. It is old flowers in a jungle – damp, wet and lush but with that meaty heaviness which you can find in tropical plants. Would I wear it again? Maybe. It’s dried down to have a woody background note and what I think is a touch of ylang ylang.

Fragrantica

Don Giovanni – Special Projects collection.

Notes: Tuberose, Civet, Jasmine
Interesting that I’ve picked up another fragrance with tuberose and jasmine in it today, and once again they are pretty sexy and indolic. The civet seems to me to be refined, its funky but without being feral and I think there’s a lemon note in there smoothing things over. Think: a woman who’s been with her lover all day, but has freshened up and got dressed to go out to a movie premier. She’s looking elegant but still has a slinkiness & smell of dangerous liaisons about her. Rawwwwrrrrr.

Have you ever mourned the loss of any fragrances from your collection?

Have a wonderful week!

Tina G xx

Halfeti by Christian Provenzano for Penhaligon`s 2015

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Portia

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Heya Niche Nerds,

I done’t remember this little beauty being released. Clearly I must have read about it somewhere but the name rings zero bells at all. Nick, my mate from Libertine Parfumerie sent me a sample to try and he usually knows what I’ll like so let’s give it a test run together.

Halfeti by Penhaligon`s 2015

Halfeti by Christian Provenzano

The Penhaligon’s story goes: All respectability forgotten, we have travelled far, as far as Turkey! And here in Halfeti, the red roses appear black so intense is their magic. Here, the British Levant Company traded in the opulent treasures of the Ottoman merchants to secure the pick of the crop.

Libertine gives these featured accords:
Top: Grapefruit, Bergamot, Green notes, Armoise, Cypress
Heart: Cumin, Nutmeg, Violet, Saffron, Rose, Jasmine, Muguet
Base: Leather, Oud, Amber, Resins, Tonka, Vanilla, Sandalwood

Dry leather, nutmeg, oud and some sweet resinous funk open Halfeti. I know that Val the Cookie Queen would not enjoy wearing it because the familiar oud/woods/leather trope is front and centre. Here it’s dark, sharp, smoky and animalic. A very masculine leaning woodsy concoction. So nothing incredibly groundbreaking but expansive and powerful for a Penhaligon’s scent, who are usually so quietly reticent.

Obviously I can imagine this on a man but in my head I wonder what sort of woman would wear Halfeti? She would have to be strong willed, happy to break the mold, probably unknowingly walking through life causing change and creating new roads for people to follow. Halfeti strikes me as a comfortable fit for a woman unafraid of being judged, happy in her choices and able to command. There you go, some scent inspired ramblings.

WikiCommons

Longevity is excellent and once the fireworks burn off a sweet, soft and comfortable woodsiness encapsulated within a soft focus vanilla/amber will hum above your skin for hours.

So, do I like it? Yes, I like it a lot but I have something quite similar and I can’t pinpoint what it is, or was. Don’t worry, it will come to me at 4am.

Further reading: Now Smell This and Fragrance Daily
Libertine has $329/100ml plus FREE Australian Delivery

What fragrances do you think of for people who break the traditions?
Portia xx

 

 

Annick Goutal Discontinuations

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Anne-Marie

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Hi all,
Since I heard that Annick Goutal is to be re-branded early next year, I’ve been carefully ticking off certain of its older offerings from my ‘to-try’ list. If, as has been reported, the line will be cut from around 45 fragrances to 25, at least some of the great classics are surely headed for the chop.

Annick Goutal Discontinuations

A wander through the Goutal catalogue

Fragrantica

I tried and loved Eau du Sud at the airport on my way home from holidays in January. Unfortunately my excitement did not outlast the post-holiday glow. I bought a decant so as to give Sud a thorough test but, lovely though it is, I’ve found it collapses on skin in hot weather. As it is a summer scent, that’s a disappointment. I still like it, but I’m not going for a full bottle when there are plenty of other Goutals jostling for the attentions of my credit card.

One of those jostlers is Sables (immortelle, cinnamon, pepper, tea, sandalwood, amber). Now this one really could be on the endangered list. Already it seems to be in limited distribution because it’s hard to find and never cheap. You have to have a deep and abiding commitment to the curry-and-burnt-sugar effect of immortelle (or helichrysum) to enjoy Sables. The other notes are bit players, although a lot of people smell cinnamon distinctly (I don’t). Sables is absolutely outstanding but it would take me at least 147 years to get through a FB. A single spritz lasts all day and can survive a shower the next morning. A large decant may be all I’ll ever need.

Then there is Passion (tuberose, tomato leaf, jasmine, ylang, vanilla, oakmoss, patchouli). This is one of the early releases (1983) and it does reference some of the great florals and chypres of yore. Tropical notes are balanced by the green twang of tomato leaf and a mossy base. Overall, Passion has (for me) a slightly tailored, formal feel to it. It’s perfect for professional settings, being neither too stuffy nor too cosy and casual. FB-worthy, yes, and much cheaper than Sables.

Fragrantica

Gardenia Passion (gardenia, jasmine, tuberose, orange blossom, vanilla). This should be named ‘tuberose passion’ really, but it is no less beautiful for that. The opening is so dramatic I gasped aloud. A white floral accord so buttery and so green it stole away the very breath I was trying to use to smell it. Then – it’s gone. Gardenia Passion leaves my skin, and the building, in under an hour. So, this one is off the list.

The last in my little clutch of Goutal samples is Grand Amour. . I think this may be a scrubber. The problem is the hyacinth, which normally I like but here it seems too cutting for my taste. But I’ve only tried Grand Armour on skin once, so who knows. It might improve.

Annick Goutal

So – over to you. Do you have great loves from the house of Goutal? Are you doing what I’m doing – snatching at them before they go?
Bye for now everyone!
Anne-Marie