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

chocolatecollage

I am not a huge fan of “gourmand” or dessert like scents but sometimes I “crave” them just like I crave chocolate. This is occasionally but when I want it, I want it. Nothing beats a chocolate lavender bar or a chocolate covered fig, but I usually don’t have those treats stashed away in my house… So, that’s why I have a few chocolate fragrances in my collection. They really hit the spot when I am in one of those moods. I’ve put together a “collage” of chocolate based scents in all price points. I tried to focus on scents that are “heavy” on chocolate since it is a note used in many blends. I wanted to go for the ones where chocolate is the star. Something that as I say “makes your face fall off”, like a bite of rich, dark chocolate.

Budget Scents: If you are looking for a rich, dark chocolate based scent with a hint of heady florals, try Crazylibellule & The Poppies Les Garçonnes in Joséphine Jonquille. It’s a solid perfume “crazystick” and it goes for about $18. If you want a delicious, dessert like fragrance, try Serendipity 3 Serendipitious EDP. It retails for $37.50. It’s nice because it has a hint of blood orange making it very “juicy”. Demeter has a bunch of chocolate scents for $20 for 1 ounce: Devil’s Food Cake, Hershey’s Dark Chocolate, Hershey’s Milk Chocolate Kisses, and there are more. I do find that these smell like the real deal. Their price makes them nice for a chocolate fix and they fade quickly so you won’t smell like that all day. mark Self Sanctuary Chocolate Orchid Scent Mist is a light wearing dark chocolate floral. It’s not my favorite by a long shot but it goes for $12 and there are body products in the line. Villainess Perfume Oil Crushed (not pictured) is a fruity dark chocolate blend with ripe raspberries, so delicious. It retails for $18.

More Expensive Scents: If you want to smell like a chocolate martini, try Bvlgari Blv Notte. It goes for $82 for 2.5 ounces. (That’s an expensive chocolate martini!) A sinful chocolate blend is Montal Chocolate Greedy, largest size goes for $135. This is every chocolate product wrapped into one and a must for the chocolate gourmand scent lover. If you want a bitter chocolate, try Payard Bergamot Truffle. It is $48 and a cologne. Comptoir Sud Pacifique’s Amour de Cocao really reminds me of a cocoa puff. Hey, some people like that sort of thing! This EDT goes for $49. Parfums des Beaux Arts by DSH has Piment et Chocolat (not pictured). This is a spicy, sexy blend of dark chocolate, nutmeg, and peppers. I do love to consume spicy dark chocolate…The 1 oz. EDP goes for $135. By the same perfumer, there is Creamy Chocolate (not pictured). This is a rich, hot chocolate like scent since it has vanilla. The 1 oz. EDP goes for about $56. A nice playful gourmand to try is Vera Wang Princess, largest goes for $72. This is sweet, chocolatey and everything else too. If you want a spicy chocolate like you would experience from a gourmet chocolate bar, try L’Artisan Parfumeur Piment Brulant. The largest goes for $135. Don’t forget the most famous gourmand ever: Thierry Mugler Angel. This has chocolate and lots of other stuff. The 1. 7 ounce EDP goes for $110.

Body Products: If you seriously want to smell like something you probably shouldn’t be eating unless you like the look of a double chin, I would say to try the entire line of Dylan’s Candy Bar Chocolate Cupcake. This is sickly sweet chocolate stuff here. Need 2 vices at once? Try 100% Pure’s Dark Chocolate & Mocha line. This stuff is rich, rich, rich. If you only want to smell like chocolate for a very short time, try either or those body washes: Lush 13 Rabbits Shower Gel or Philosophy Classic Fudge. Both are sure to curb your chocolate craving. I really like the chocolate bath products because they are so short lived so I don’t have the fear that I smell like a Strawberry Shortcake doll all day.



Sud Pacifique Amour De Cacao Perfume for Women Eau De Toilette Spray 3.3 Oz by Comptoir Sud Pacifique

The Mainstream Monday: Sniffing A Popular Fragrance

Vera Wang Princess is one of those fragrances obviously marketed to a younger crowd. The closest it gets to senior is senior in high school. It doesn’t mean that you have to be a teen to like it, it is just obvious this is who the company was banking on. The fragrance is a sweet oriental blend and very different from the other Vera Wang fragrances. It’s pretty light and light wearing. Not overwhelming. It isn’t horrible but I just don’t like it. Of course, I’m older and I’m not wild about sweet fragrances; it’s a personal thing.

What really stands out to me the most in Princess is the dark chocolate note. When I wear this is this the overwhelming note. It isn’t bad, just not what I want. It wears like a teenage version of Mugler’s Angel. It’s chocolaty and woodsy with sweet powdery hints of vanilla and amber. Did I mention the hints of sugary frosting as well? I can tell that the fragrance contains everything including fruits and flowers but on me, I just get all the sweet notes. The bottom line is that this is a sweet fragrance. My sisters are teenagers and love this scent. They like it because it isn’t too fruity or floraly. And for them and their lack of exposure to other “grown-up” scents, they think this is heavy and sexy because of the wood and amber base. So the product is genius in that aspect. It’s a sexy and sophisticated scent in their eyes even though it isn’t heavy. So moms, don’t worry, you won’t be gagging when you are dropping your daughters and their friends off at the movie theater when you are stuck in the SVU with 4 teenage girls wearing this.

My verdict is that this scent is definitely not for me. I find it generic and boring, too sweet and foody. It smells like a chocolate cupcake with vanilla frosting was smeared on me while I was wearing a generic amber, woods, and musk based fragrance. I love the dry-down of the base notes after a few hours. It’s woodsy and amber-ish. It’s very pretty but I can get that from other scents without the sweetness. Since it is a sweet fragrance, I would recommend it for cooler weather wear. I don’t like this but I can see how others can. If you like sweet, gourmand oriental fragrances then you’ll most likely like this one. Sweet, gourmand orientals aren’t my favorite but they do have a time and a place and I know some people love them.

The bottle is really cute, the epitome of cute things. They should just put a pic of a fuzzy, white kitten on it and be done. Once again, this is what my sisters rave about. They love having it out on their dresser in their lilac painted room. The bottle feels heavy and sturdy. And I have to admit that even I think it is cute.

I would say you would like this if you are a teen, haha, if you like chocolate based or dessert sweet fragrances or if you like Carolina Herrera 212 Sexy, Aquolina Pink Sugar, Ralph Lauren Ralph Hot, Fresh Canabis Santal, Mugler Angel and/or mark Jewel. The 1 ounce goes for $45, 1.7 ounce for $57, 3.4 ounce for $72. There is a body butter, body polish, and bubble bath available. Sephora has a cute roll-on of this, the other end is a lip gloss. It makes a nice gift. *Currently available at fragrancenet.com.

Dont worry I found an ad with a fluffy white kitten! (Oh, and a hunk too).

Don't worry I found an ad with a fluffy white kitten! (Oh, and a hunky prince charming too!)


Vera Wang Princess Perfume for Women Eau De Toilette Spray 1.7 Oz by Vera Wang

From: BigDiscountFragrances.com

Weekly Cheap Secret:

We all have to wash our hands, so why don’t we make that process a bit more enjoyable. This Palmer’s hand wash is a slightly opalescent liquid that really doesn’t strip the hands of moisture. I like it much better than Bath and Body Works “moisturizing” hand washes. Those just strip my hands dry and I swear make them crack. This product doesn’t. Plus, it has a faint chocolate like odor that lingers on the skin. It’s a nice comforting fragrance that isn’t offensive or competitive. This goes for about $4 and can be purchased on Palmer’s website. I occasionally see at the drugstore. When I do, I usually pick up a couple of bottles.

This is my granny’s cooking of fragrance. It is the most “comfort” fragrance that I own. It is warm, soothing, and just as cuddly as a my favorite soft cardigan. Bvlgari Omnia is a fragrance that I will always have around, just like my grandmother’s recipes. It isn’t my everyday fragrance just like honey cakes and mashed potatoes aren’t my everyday meals. I always will have this around. This is my soothing fragrance and I have been wearing it a year after its launch in 2003.

The thing that I have learned about the original Omnia is that you will love it or not. And you can “smell” it or not. Evidently on some people it fades very quickly or their sniffers are “immune” to it. Others can smell them hours later but they can’t smell themselves, so they don’t bother wearing it because perfume should make you happy first. I on the other hand, smell it. Currently, I have been wearing it for 3 hours and it smells just as strong as when I spritz it on. I also smell it on my cardigans, scarves, clothes after I wear it and when they have been sitting in the hamper for a few days. But, that being said. I know that it isn’t a “strong” fragrance to begin with. It wears pretty close in the beginning and it continues to wear closely. It is a cuddle fragrance, it’s intimate.

Omnia is simple, really. It is described as a “modern oriental”, that it is. It is a warm blend with a slightly citrus top note. But what sticks with me is the masala tea. So imagine a sweet, slightly spicy blend of masala spices (think cardamom and saffron) with hints of milky sweetness like a condensed milk. It is more of a Kashmiri Chai seasoning (with notes of almond, cardamom, saffron, cinnamon, cloves) but instead of green tea, an Assam rich, black tea leaves. So in essence, it reminds me of a very Northwestern version of Chai, something that Tazo or Oregon Chai would do. Because it is Kashmiri with dark tea but sweet with a hint of white chocolate and vanilla flavored steamed milk. Now you can see why it is so comforting! It sounds very sweet and spicy, but is “sheer” and just slightly gourmand. It is more like smelling the steam from a hot cup of chai served from your favorite coffee house. (Less spicy, than those served at Indian and Pakistani restaurants).

I like the bottle, many people do not. It is plastic (cheap, I know) with warm tea colored plastic and chrome-ish accents. But, it does represent the infinity symbol and I like nerdy stuff like that. Even the name is soothing, it sounds relaxing/meditative and “omniah” is an Arabic word for “wish”.

The 1.33 ounce retails for $68 and the 2.2 ounce for $88. It is an ea de parfum and should last a long time. But, this is one that you should definitely try before forking over the dough. You may be one of the people that skin eats it. I recommend this one for those that don’t like floral fragrances, like light fragrances (Omnia is like a strange warm version of D & G Light Blue), fans of chai tea, like tea based scents and fans of comforting scents. It isn’t too foody or gourmand or sweet. It is one of my favorites. I wear it all year. It is available at fragrancenet.com.


Omnia Perfume for Women Eau De Parfum Spray 2.2 Oz by Bvlgari

From: BigDiscountFragrances.com

I have no idea how I didn’t know this product existed until recently. I love cocoa butter products. They are usually super cheap and are really a find. I’ve used Palmer’s products in the past and really liked them. I was making an order and came across this when I was trying to purchase a cocoa butter stick. It retails for $1.99 so I added this to the order. It is amazing. It is a moisturizing clear lip balm with subtle shine that isn’t too glossy. It just provides a light sheen. It has an amazing dark chocolate and peppermint fragrance, think the invigorating essence of a York Peppermint Patty. It smells delicious. It contains cocoa butter and peppermint oil, which leaves a minty fresh tingle. It isn’t a heavy or greasy formula. I have to apply it like every 45 minutes. But, that may be due to the fact that my lips are so dry due to this crazy Pacific Northwestern weather that includes freezing air and alot of snow right now. Regardless I am really impressed with this yummy product and its price. I will be repurchasing one of these squeeze tubes in the future.

Demeter Devil’s Food Cologne Fragrance Pick-Me-Up Spray is just as rich and gooey as the real deal. This fragrance is super chocolatey and really rich. It’s a perfect chocolate fix. Seriously, sometimes when I crave chocolate I smell this and then the stuff your face in a vat of chocolate syrup urge is gone. It is rich and smells like Betty Crocker Devil’s Food cake batter. It smells like wet and milky cocoa powder. It smells more of batter than a dark chocolate bar; it’s cake batter. It actually smells moist and gooey. It reminds me a lot of a Strawberry Shortcake doll from way back in the day. It smells like cake and sometimes smelling chocolate is nice. It isn’t very long lasting but is nice while it is there. It’s quite devilish really.