Nirvana Black by Pierre Negrin for Elizabeth and James 2013

Hi there APJ,

I know many of you have already tried and RAVED about this little designer/celebuscent. The Olsen twins launched the fashion label named after their siblings and the fragrances are meant to fit this aesthetic, they do.I also want to say how impressed I am by these two girls who got a lucky break as babies but somehow have managed to transcend their past and create this incredible empire. They are really cool girls and I have really enjoyed following their story which could so easily have ended in train wrecks.

Nirvana Black Elizabeth and James SephoraPhoto Stolen Sephora

Let’s talk about the bottle, it’s got to be the coolest, Glomesh styled, retro glam offering I’ve seen in EVER. Feels good and heavy in your hand, excellent grip because the bottle portion is rounded dots and the lid is pointy dots for ease of opening, snazzy gold tone side stripes and join band. I freaking love it. The bottle also survived Ainslie Walker dropping it from shoulder height to the tiles in Sydney’s new Sephora, noisy but unbroken. I bought my bottle in America in November and only now am I getting around to writing about it for you…

Nirvana Black by Elizabeth and James 2013

Nirvana Black by Pierre Negrin

Nirvana Black Elizabeth and James FragranticaPhoto Stolen Fragrantica

Fragrantica gives these featured accords in one line:
Violet, sandalwood, vanilla

I have to tell you that the hype had me really worried, you know what it’s like when everyone has been raving about something to the point of nausea? So I kept my expectations as low as I could. Yes, I was pretending. This was one very excited perfumista.

Nirvana Black opens with a full on camphorous blast of what smells like the eucalyptal* top of Australian sandalwood, sharp and biting over the top of this lovely creamy vanilla. It’s an excellent, eye popping dichotomy that makes me smile from the get go. My skin gives me little violet, only the merest hint of it because Nirvana Black is ALL about a creamy, sweet, sensual & boozy vanilla/sandalwood/amber with the merest hint of spice and herb to keep it interesting.

o.22734Photo Stolen Fragrantica

It stays pretty linear to for the 5+ hours I can smell it but by morning there is not even a hint that I’d been wearing fragrance. Nirvana Black is quite fragrant, densely packed and gives good sillage for the first three hours, that’s really good for my skin. After that it softens out and boy is it a smooth musky vanilla, like rubbing the most exquisite chocolate velvet across your cheek.

I like too that the Olsen girls have kept Nirvana Black’s price reasonable. It’s affordable to most, smells great and looks like it cost a LOT more. Now I’m sure most of the die hard perfumistas will poo poo but even though Nirvana Black is simple and wearable it is not boring. This is fun and yummy.

Nirvana Black Elizabeth and James Chocolate Velvet DIOR PinterestPhoto Stolen Pinterest

Further reading: Now Smell This and Perfume Posse
Sephora has US$55/30ml
Surrender To Chance has the manufacturers roll on mini $19/7ml

What are your thoughts on Nirvana Black, or indeed the Olsen twins?
Portia x

eucalyptal: I made it up but you know what I mean

14 thoughts on “Nirvana Black by Pierre Negrin for Elizabeth and James 2013

  1. How have I not tried this yet? I bet it would be right up my alley. Sandalwood and vanilla are two of my favorites.
    I love your new word eucalyptal. Honestly I think a lot of perfume peeps create new words on a regular basis. When the perfect descriptor doesn’t exist you need to make up your own.


    • Hey there Poodle,
      OMG! You will adore this on e I reckon. Great frag, excellent packaging and the price is very nice too.
      When I create words I think of Shakespeare and how many he brought into common usage. While in no way comparing myself to him.
      Portia xx


    • Hi Katherine,
      Sadly the Nirvana White was less lovely for me but I have liked it on some of my buddies. The opening goes funny for me.
      Wear it in the best of health for a lovely spring.
      Portia xx


  2. I liked both of these when I tried them, some of the best celebuscents I’ve ever tried, in fact. Night reminded me a bit of Queen Latifah’s Queen of Hearts, which is very popular here and also cheap as chips because its popularity came about quite slowly, pretty much after the company had given up on it! It’s also a creamy sandalwood/vanilla/amber with spice.


  3. Ha haaaa! I felt like the famous clumsy perfume sniffer!! It’s true the packaging screeches glamour and somehow the fragrance works sgainst all odds!! Thanks for the review! Xx


    • Heya Ainslie,
      What a moment that was in Sephora. BANG! Every eye turned to you and you so gracefully picked it up and said, “WOW! The bottle didn’t break!” it was so calm and serene, HILARIOUS.
      Portia xx


    • Ainslie is a glamorous brick, so freaking composed in the face of drama. Good luck in the hunt and always lovely to see you here MeganInStMaxime,
      Portia x


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