Ellenisia by Steve de Mercado for Penhaligons 2005

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Post by Gabriella

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Hello perfume lovers!

It’s often said that happiness comes when reality beats expectations. This can happen as much in the perfume world as anywhere else, especially now when we’re faced with rave blog reviews or when there’s a new release by one of our favourite brands or perfumers.

Today I want to talk about a beautiful perfume that has fallen short for me, not because it is not good – quite the opposite – but because I have built up my expectations about it over several years, actually having it and wearing it doesn’t match those expectations. That scent is Ellensia by Penhaligon’s.

Ellenisia by Penhaligons 2005

Ellenisia by Steve de Mercado

Ellenisia Penhaligon`s FragranticaPhoto Stolen Fragrantica

Fragrantica lists these following accords:
Top: Mandarin orange, violet leaf
Middle: Jasmine, gardenia, rose, tuberose
Base: Plum, vanilla

The weight of expectations for poor old Ellenisia was built up a long time ago. At the earliest stages of my perfume wanderings, when I was skulking round the perfume boards on Makeupalley, board members were raving about it as the most gorgeous white floral. As the perfume was unobtainable in Australia back then, it became even more coveted and desirable to me. My desire only grew when people said it was a better version of Chanel Gardenia.

Time went on and then Penhaligon’s made an appearance at our local department store but a bottle was way beyond my budget. I’d go in often and spritz some Ellenisia on a blotter to get my fix of the fume and delight in the sensual, heady but very playful gardenia and tuberose mix.

Ellenisia Penhaligon`s Toorop_Dame_in_wit WikipediaPhoto Stolen Wikipedia

This happened for a while, until of course, other perfumed delights came my way and Ellenisia was temporarily forgotten.

Fast forward to last year. I had just moved to Melbourne and I am out of work. Again, a bottle of Penhaligon’s is too expensive and out of my reach. Again, I covet it more than anything.

A couple of months ago, I finally pull the trigger. After more than a decade, the object of my rapture is finally in my hot little hands and I can’t wait to wear it. I am carefully unwrapping the cellophane from the pink cardboard box and lifting the little glass cap that sits so prettily atop a pink ribbon, I press the atomiser and….nothing. For sure, Ellenisia was pretty, it was the same gorgeous mix of gardenia and tuberose, given depth by the mandarin and plum but not too sweet, thanks to the greenness of the violet leaf. It was nice, but it didn’t rock my world like it had in my head time and time again. Mr M says I smell pretty and I do, but I can’t help feeling something’s missing. I’ve ruined my own perfect scent, I have built it up too much in my mind, building it up and up and up that it can’t help but fall short. Hopefully, as I continue to wear it, my expectations will fade to the background and the beauty that is this gorgeous white floral will come to the fore, unencumbered by the prospects in my mind.

Ellenisia Penhaligon`s Statue PixabayPhoto Stolen Pixabay

Further reading: EauMG and Mimi Froufrou
Libertine Parfumerie has $239/100ml
Luckyscent has $4/0.7ml

Have you ruined a perfectly gorgeous scent through the weight of your expectations? Conversely, what perfumes have you set the bar really low for that have subsequently rocked your world?

With much love till next time.

M x