Mainstream Monday: Sniffing A Popular Fragrance

Ralph Lauren describes this scent as being “a provocative accessory of modern glamour”.  The inspiration includes those amazing sirens of Old Hollywood including Ingrid Bergman and Lauren Bacall. This fragrance was created by Olivier Gillotin (nose behind such amazing scents as 10 Corso Como and Tom Ford Private Blends Tobacco Vanille and less than amazing Ed Hardy and Mariah Carey scents) and launched in 2008. This spicy oriental caught my attention for the Old Hollywood references and glamorous Laetitia Casta ads. I wish I could say that it was what I wanted it to be. It isn’t Old Hollywood glamorous to me. If you want Old Hollywood glamour stick with a classic Guerlain or something Piguet Fracas. Ralph Lauren Notorious isn’t bad, it just isn’t Notorious.

Notorious opens up as a sweet floral, not a candy sweet fragrance bust just a sweet, to me, “modern” floral. It reminds me of other department store and Victoria’s Secret fragrances. It is slightly spicy with generic pink peppercorn but this spice isn’t that overwhelming. It plays nicely with the spiciness of carnation. The sweetness comes from black currant, so it is fruity. This scent is chocolaty but not like a Comptoir Sud Pacifique or other crazy for Coco Puffs scents. This one seriously smells like a chocolatey peony. What is this? Well, it is chocolate cosmsos, a beautiful and breath-taking cosmos that smells like if a Strawberry Shortcake doll was in your flower garden. I’m still looking for a lipstick shade that resembles chocolate cosmos. Anyways, back to the fragrance. It is slightly vanilla/chocolatey, it is much more floral. It really does stay in the peony and carnation mode for some time but with a little more “vanilla orchid”, a certain sweetness like that. This floral stays strong for some time. I must say that Notorious is a long-lasting fragrance. The dry down never shakes it floralness but it does “chill out” with some woods. The woods aren’t overly “oriental” woods. They are soft, warm, and have orris root powdery sweetness. Despite the sweetness, the orris/iris makes it very fresh and crisp. I didn’t know “oriental woods” could have a fresh dry-down. And somehow manage to have choco-vanilla sweetness? It’s strange, but I do like the dry-down. It is an interesting perception of “freshness”.

This scent does smell a bit grown-up in comparison to other Ralph Lauren fragrances. It doesn’t smell like it was launched for middle school students. I don’t find it overly grown-up either. I really do feel like the market was the 35-50-ish crowd that doesn’t wear “classic” fragrances. This is a nice change from other mainstream perfume releases.

Notes listed include: chocolate cosmos, black currant, pink peppercorn, bergamot, white frost peony, carnation, patchouli, musk, vanilla, and iris.

It isn’t that I don’t like this one. I just find it boring and I have many more fragrances in my fragrance wardrobe that make me feel like a sultry film noir screen siren. As far as a Ralph Lauren fragrance, this would be one of my pics since I hate Blue and Ralph. Like I said, it isn’t notorious. It’s just something that I forget about. I would say to give this one a try if you like Missoni EDP, Vera Wang Princess EDT, Bath and Body Works Vanilla Noir EDT, Calvin Klein Secret Obsession EDP, Mélange Perfumes EDP in #13, Sarah Jessica Parker Covet EDP, Van Cleef & Arpels Lys Carmen EDP, Victoria’s Secret Very Sexy Hot EDP, and/or Bvlgari Blv Notte EDP.

Prices for this EDP range from $65 to $75 depending on size. It is available at beauty.com. *It is also available at fragrancenet.com.



Notorious Perfume for Women Eau De Parfum Spray 2.5 Oz by Ralph Lauren

From: BigDiscountFragrances.com

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Mainstream Monday: Sniffing A Popular Fragrance

I really like the “classic” Burberry EDP that was launched in 1995. This is a great casual fragrance that is warm and a bit “dry”, making it perfect for fall/winter and winter/spring(much like a Burberry scarf). I know that this fragrance contains lots of fruits and vanilla, but on me it wears very dried floral and dried woods and dried fruits. I think of it as my Chanel Cristalle EDP for fall. It smells warm and comforting. I think I love it so much because it smells like an updated classic. It is almost a fruity-floral aldehyde. At first it is stone fruity. It reminds me of the kind of “green” peach found in Chanel Cristalle EDP. It’s an aldehyde peach. A crisp, fall-like green apple appears. It adds crispness to the perfumery peach. There is a tartness from currants. The first “blast” is fruity but not childish. It is very reminiscent of a Chanel or an Annick Goutal type of fruit, a classic French fruit blend. The fruits hang around for about 15 minutes on me. I love this stage but like a bountiful harvest, it doesn’t last. The fruits fade, a bit of the aldehyde peach remains. It is mixed with a faint and almost “dry” jasmine. It is as if the jasmine dried out on a slab of sandalwood. So, I get a woodsy peach that is still fresh and juicy with sweet jasmine. It is very feminine and flirty. This stage lasts for sometime. The dry-down is beautiful and transitions from things living to things dried. I get a mix of rich dried woods, a hint of vanilla (not foody sweet, sweet in a perfume way), and dried fruits such as dehydrated peaches, currants, apples, and dates. It’s cozy and easy to wear. I love to wear this fragrance as my “day” fragrance in fall and spring. This is the classic and timeless Burberry trench of fragrances. It wears on me throughout the work day. And it wears very faintly. Most of the wear is the dried woods stage and this last for 4+ hours on me.

Notes include: black currant, green apple, peach, jasmine, sandalwood, cedar, and vanilla. I would say that you would like this one if you like  Crazylibellue & The Poppies 26 June ile d’Yue, Annick Goutal Quel Amour, Chanel Cristalle EDP, Guerlain Mitsouko EDP, Calvin Klein Escape, White Shoulders, Lancome Tresor, Cereus Pour Femme #12, and/or Parfums de Nicolai Sacrebleu!. The 1.7 ounce goes for $57 and the 3.3 ounce for $74. It is available at sephora.com.* Currently available at fragrancenet.com.


Burberry Perfume for Women Eau De Parfum Spray 3.3 Oz by Burberry

From: BigDiscountFragrances.com

The Mainstream Monday: Sniffing A Popular Fragrance

I actually really like the original White Linen. I remember smelling it as a 5th grader and thinking it was a genius of a creation. It was bold without being White Diamonds, fresh without with being CK1, and most of all I could talk my grandmother into buying it for me if there was a GWP. I did succeed and I did get the tiniest bottle there was. I’m sure it was an odd choice for a 5th grade girl but I like it much more than any cotton candy body spray or Exclamation or some Tommy Hilfiger creation or Secret deodorant spray, whatever the kids where wearing in those days.As an adult I’m not really into White Linen. It’s a nice “memory” fragrance. Did I also mention that I loved Sand & Sable at this time as well?

When Pure White Linen was launched it kept being “sold” to me as a younger, fresher, more modern White Linen. Obviously, the sales person did not know what I was looking for. I wore the original at the age of 10. I associate the “old lady” one with youth. A younger one did not appeal to me. Young fragrances don’t appeal to me anyways. I would so rather be sporting an old-fashioned rose based fragrance, Coco Chanel, or Guerlain Jicky. She would not back off and handed me a sample of this. I gave it a try and actually found it stronger and “older” than the original. Maybe I was just grumpy because I hate being sold to…

This fragrance is very “linen”. It has that fresh from the laundry vibe but much more concentrated and feminized. At first spritz I really don’t pick up on all of the fruity notes listed by the company. I definitely get that “fresh air” accord. I am not saying that the crisp fruits aren’t there. I guess I am just overwhelmed by the synthetic piercing air accord. After the alcohol begins to fade. I can still pick up on the “air” but it is much more humid and lush like it is with tropical ferns. I can slightly pick up on berries but it is more of a “fuzzy” cotton candy berry that is buried in a rain forest.  This fragrance seems to be sweeter than the original. I guess this why I don’t like it as well. It smells like the original but with a dash of some drugstore cotton candy body spray and a mix of a floral Victoria’s Secret Garden body spray. Luckily this stage fades pretty quickly. The fresh air accord is always there throughout the wear of this. It lingers around and it smells like a Downy ball has exploded all over a slightly sweet bouquet of freesia and the kind of honeysuckle that mainstream companies love to use. It becomes a fresh laundry-floral blend. It isn’t bad. It just isn’t to my liking. I do like the woodsy fresh dry down. This could possibly “save” the fragrance in my book.  It smells clean and I love it with the white cedarwood. It adds a warmth. I like this fragrance once it loses its tropical humidity. The dry down smells like having a crisp, white beach towel drying on a driftwood on a hot but breezy summer day. I wish I could get it just “as is” for the dry down. So why do I think it is so “old”? I guess because I feel it is trying so darn hard to be young with the fruits and hissy “flirty” florals thrown into the “original” formula. It is like a beautiful lady in her 40’s making herself look cheap and silly by wearing an entire outfit from Forever 21. It isn’t a bad thing. I am sure she looks great if she wears it with confidence but it is just a bit silly. What do I like about the fragrance? I like the dewy greens and I do like the dry down. This is a great fragrance for spring, even that early time of spring when green buds peep out of the dusting of snow.

Estee Lauder says that this fragrance contains: Italian mandarin, cool fresh air accord, raspberry, dewy greens, white freesia, red tulips (totally lacking fragrance in reality), rose, wild honeysuckle, gardenia petals, white cedarwood, patchouli, and white heliotrope.

It’s a very long-lasting fragrance. In attempts to use up the sample I would spray it on at night. I would wake up in the morning and the fragrance did not lose endurance. It still stayed strong. My bed linens would smell of Pure White Linen until a washing. I really wouldn’t mind a bottle to use to freshen up linens and linen closets or to cover up Frink odors. But, if I want a “lighter” original, then I will just go for the White Linen dusting powder. The original dusting powder is heavenly.

I would say to give this a try if you like Issey Miyake, Calvin Klein Eternity, Armani Acqua di Gio for Her, Annick Goutal Eau de Camille, Van Cleef & Arpels Feerie, Elizabeth Arden Mediterranean and/or mark Earth. The fragrance comes in 3 sizes (1, 1.7, 3.4) with prices ranging from $39.50 to $72. And just like back in the day, you can still get a GWP with it if you do your shopping at the right time.


Pure White Linen Perfume for Women Eau De Parfum Spray 1.7 Oz by Estee Lauder

From: BigDiscountFragrances.com

I don’t hate Michael Kors Island, if there is one thing that I have learned; it is that I have gotten kinder with age. I may of hated this a few years ago, throwing mean words out at it. But I mean really, this is no worse than any other mainstream fragrance made to sell, sell, sell. It’s just generic, not awful.

It isn’t offensive. I think that I don’t like it because I am not a fan of “aquatic” fragrances in general. For an “aquatic” and “airy” fragrance, this isn’t too bad . It opens with a bit of “fruit”. I can’t tell what fruit, just an accord trying to be juicy and fresh and a little sweet. (For the record, the company says that it is kiwi; I imagine that is a hard scent to replicate). It is floral and I do pick up on something honeysuckle-ish, but strangely the honeysuckle isn’t as sweet as honeysuckle should be. It is much more hissy and quite heady and piercing.  I dries down to a  floral , very modern rose with  sand and warmth, super humid. There is a certain heaviness on a “white” or a “dry” wood. It isn’t a dirty wood note but a super clean wood. I believe Michael Kors is calling it “driftwood” and I can see that, an aquatic wood that is drying out in the sand. This fragrance is a bit hard to explain since everything is very lab made. It can’t be picked apart. It is all or nothing.  It is a certain generic juicy fruit, a blend of “classic” florals with lots of warmth from wood. But, the entire time it is still really aquatic with heaviness on the “sea breeze”. For most of the wear on me, it smells of wood and water. It wears for a good half of the day. The company claims that this is a blend of such things as “Chinese kiwi, hydroponic honeysuckle, parrot tulip (which doesn’t have an odor), champaca flowers, Bulgarian rose, white bark accord, driftwood, and rice fields accord”.Hmm, rice fields, very interesting. There is also, “Kauai waterfalls and oxygenated water”.  So obviously this is a mood fragrance, a fantasy fragrance with lots of made up things to create atmosphere since many of the things listed really don’t present an aroma or at least a pleasant aroma. I have to give it credit. It is a fantasy fragrance, not very original, but it is trying to create an escape, trying to make us think of exotic places. Far from Michael Kors homeland island: Long Island. So this fragrance may not be as nice as an exotic island vacation, but it sure is trying with all of those lab created accords. I would of loved to be the chemist working on the “hydroponic honeysuckle” or “Kauai waterfalls” team.

The bottle is pretty but feels awkward in the hands. It is glass, a sheer turquoise to represent crystal clear water. The shape is just too chunky. The 1.7 ounce retails for $60 and the 3.4 ounce for $75. I would say that you would like this if you like Issey Miyake, Demeter Rain, Giorgio Armani Acqua di Gio, Bvlgari Omnia Green Jade, Calvin Klein Eternity, Giorgio Blue, Calypso Marine, Chaps for Women, Estee Lauder Beyond Paradise, Davidoff Cool Water, or if you like “aquatic” fragrance. There are many of these types of fragrances on the market. I can keep going: Elizabeth Arden Mediterranean, Jennifer Lopez Deseo, Carolina Herrera 212, OK, I’ll stop now.

The real deal.

The real deal.


Island Perfume for Women Eau De Parfum Spray 3.4 Oz by Michael Kors

From: BigDiscountFragrances.com

I’m usually not a fan of popular fragrances. Especially fragrances by individuals like Calvin Klein or Ralph Lauren. Not because I am a snob, it is just I think that many of them smell the same. They aren’t bad. I just don’t want to drop $60 on something that doesn’t rock my world. I’m pretty simple really, most of the time I prefer single note essential oils. I have a bottle of Euphoria. A small bottle, but I do have a bottle. It isn’t too bad for a mainstream fragrance. I have sniffed niche stuff that was more boring. I really like the bottle. I know that it has enemies but I think it is very sleek and would make a nice topic for a women’s studies class 🙂 The bottle is actually metal and not some chromey looking plastic. (It is very rare to not see crappy, cheap bottles anymore. Even Guerlain resorts to plastic caps sometimes and that pisses me off : ) The bottle is heavy and sturdy. Alot of people don’t like its sleek design but I find it interesting. I forgot who designed the bottle but I’d give him a high five.

Euphoria is a sweet woodsy oriental. Sometimes I find it too sweet for my tastes. It just depends on my mood. I’m 24, so I grew up in the gourmand era. It doesn’t shock or amaze me. I’ve smelled Angel on ladies since I can remember. There wasn’t a time in my life that gourmand wasn’t main stream and purchased by every lady or loving man that wanted their lady to smell of dark chocolate and creme brulee. Gourmand will become the “grandma” fragrance. Euphoria is creamy but not in a vanilla way. It isn’t chocolaty, it is just thick and creamy. It is balanced by woodsy sexiness and this helps to “grow up” this fragrance and not make it to teeny. It is fruity in a bitter pomegranate way. It wears very nicely on me. It doesn’t turn too sweet. Actually, the rich woods are what linger on me. This fragrance just smells robust. I would sum it up as a creamy, pungent pomegranate juice in a woodsy amber container. It’s nice for a mainstream product.

The eau de parfum spray is available in many sizes, 1 ounce to 3.4 ounces. The EDP sprays wears nicely and for some time. I can smell it on myself all day, so I would say that it has a minimum of 12 hours of wear. It is also available in a touch parfum. I love the gel idea. It can travel and it doesn’t have that alcohol reminder. It smells a bit more woodsy than the spray. There is a shower gel, body cream, and lotion. I’ve tried the lotion and it smells wonderful. The lotion is long lasting and a pretty good moisturizer. I think it would be all you would need in the spring or summer as far as fragrance goes. The fragrance is strong and some may find it too strong for a warm, summer climate. If an advertisment has the models engaging in foreplay, it is probably too heavy of a fragrance for summer or warmer climates. Just a personal rule. I really think if I run out of this one, I would repurchase. I would of course buy the smallest size because I have so much fragrance or I would wait for it to show at a TJ Maxx or something.
Or get it at:

Euphoria Perfume for Women Eau De Parfum Spray 3.4 Oz by Calvin Klein

From: BigDiscountFragrances.com

If you aren’t tired of smoky eyes, then here is another eyeshadow set for you. If you don’t have all of these colors, then here is a set for you. I really like Calvin Klein makeup and I find these shadows okay. I am not a big fan of  “strip” compacts because they “blur” and mix and I am a bit of a perfectionist.

Anyways, this limited edition compact contains four shimmery smoky colors that are long wearing. Melange eyeshadow in Grey Colorway contains the following: deep “mauvey” grey, shiny silver shimmer, pale white blue shimmer, and a shimmering midnight black. It retails for $35 and is limited edition available of sephora.com.