Weekly Cheap Secret:

Nivea is really pushing this stuff this summer along with the “matching” body lotion. Evidently “Happiness” is a blend of orange blossom and bamboo essence. The scent is getting rave reviews, but I’m not crazy about it. I love orange blossom. If this wash did not have orange blossom in the description and had something like “orange juice” labeled on it, then maybe I could like it. I do like the formula. So, I’ll start with that first.

The formula is a cream-gel meaning that is a thicker gel. One does not need a loofah to make this stuff lather. I like this because I am not a fan of a loofah. I think this body wash gives the same amount of lather as any other shower gel on a loofah. I like a thick lather. It makes me feel like I’m getting super-squeaky clean. This isn’t really a “deal” like other drugstore shower gels because you aren’t using a loofah.  You typically use more product without a loofah. The formula leaves my skin smooth and not overly moisturized/greasy, just soft (and clean feeling). I follow-up with a body cream. Now to the fragrance…

It isn’t that I dislike this fragrance. I find it odd. It’s like drinking Sprite when you thought you were drinking sparkling water. It’s not bad, it’s just a shock at first. I thought I was supposed to get orange blossom but instead I got a very “vitamin C” type fragrance. It smells like citric acid used in cough drops. It’s just very, very orange. Orange blossom is supposed to be a heady, white floral. I don’t know what bamboo smells like but I was expecting something green and/or aquatic. This scent isn’t bad. It just smells of a synthetic orange. Some mornings when I use this and my sniffer isn’t on its “game”,  I think it smells like Sweet Tarts or Smarties. It has a “powdery” citric acid smell instead of a hard, lozenge citric acid smell. Other times it reminds me of a vitamin C drop and The Body Shop Satsuma. The scent isn’t bad if you like candy-like citrus scents or the smell of orange juice. It is an invigorating fragrance. I think you’ll have the Sprite experience if you are expecting a more “natural” citrus scent or an orange blossom/orange blossom floral water type of fragrance. Don’t have the expectation that this is a floral scent. Expect orange juice and you may be happy with it. It really is a nice product for summer because it foams and makes the skin feel clean without being too dry. And the scent is a very energizing orange. Try this if you like The Body Shop Satsuma products.

This wash retails for under $6. It’s available at most drugstores and drugstore.com.

The Mainstream Monday: Sniffing A Popular Fragrance

Moschino I Love Love EDT is a citrusy-floral with a nice clean cedar dry-down. It reminds me of Dolce & Gabbana Light Blue EDT, so I think it has a refreshing Mediterranean charm. It’s a very “young” fragrance if you go by packaging alone, but don’t. I think this is a universal fragrance for many age groups. It’s a woodsy-citrus floral that is perfect for “everyday” wear.

The top notes are very citrusy. They aren’t zesty like a fresh lemon, orange, grapefruit. They are very “pretty” and feminine. I think of citrus notes as being very unisex but the citrus used in this Moschino are not. They are very feminine. They are like a clean musk citrus blend. You get tangy orange and grapefruit but it really adheres to the skin and binds with it. It then becomes tangy and juicy with red fruits like red currant. This creates a red currant citrus hybrid fruit. Even though there is a bit of red fruit, it still is a citrus fragrance. It does get more floral after some wear. I think it gets not really floral, but “prettier”. It just starts to smell girlier. It gets a bit “cooler” from lily-of-the-valley. It starts to feel like there is a warm, humid breeze on a hot, dry day. The florals, even though they are impossible to tear away from the fragrance, create a beautiful freshness with the juicy citrus. I love the dry-down. It has a dried, warm drift wood smell. It smells of washed out and dried white cedar and skin-like musks. The dry-down is like sunbathing near the Mediterranean. It is just warm and relaxing. It wears longer than other EDTs that I’ve worn. I say about 5 hours of wear. However, if this gets on clothing, I can smell it on the clothes for like a week while they were in the dirty laundry. Cedar is a note with staying power. Plus, I think this fragrance wears nicely on skin. It just sticks from the beginning because it has woods and clean musks. I find this a nice comforting scent that is good for anytime wear. It isn’t the most original, like I said, it does remind me of Dolce & Gabbana Light Blue, but it is a nice scent if you are looking for a citrus-floral that is grounded by wood.

The bottle is quirky and fun. The shape is inspired bu Olive Oyl and it is covered with graffiti. Granted it isn’t an expensive looking bottle and the top is plastic, but it is fun. It’s very Moschino.

Notes listed include: orange, lemon, grapefruit, red currant, lily of the valley, bulrushes, tea rose, cinnamon leaves, tanaka wood, musk, and cedar.

Give this fragrance a try if you like Dolce & Gabbana Light Blue EDT, Acqua di Parma Fico di Amalfi EDT, Orlane Paris Eau d’Orlane EDT, Love by Nina Ricci EDT, Clean Summer Linen EDP, Lilly Pulitzer Squeeze EDP, and/or Dior Addict Shine EDT.

It’s a shame but I believe this fragrance has been discontinued (it was launched in 2005). I still see it around sometimes at places like Target or Walgreens. It is usually available for an amazing price (look on-line for coupons too) on sites like fragrancenet.com. If this is a fragrance that you usually wear, pick up a few bottles while you can.


I Love Love Cheap and Chic Perfume for Women Eau De Toilette Spray 3.4 Oz by Moschino

From: BigDiscountFragrances.com

Tocca Crema de Mano hand cream is a nice hand cream. I have to admit that I only really like it because of the fragrance. The formula is nice but it isn’t heavy-duty or exceptional. The formula is pretty basic. It is moisturizing without being greasy. I do like that. I really dislike using a heavy-duty hand cream during the day. It can be so gross. You can have slippery computer keys, steering wheel, door knobs, smudging an iPhone, and you can find yourself unable to open anything. I like Tocca’s light weight hand cream. It’s practical for every day, day time use. It absorbs so quickly. But, what I really like is the Stella fragrance.

This hand cream is packed with fragrance. The Stella fragrance is an elegant interpretation of blood oranges. It’s a flirty citrus floral scent. It is loaded with cool, feminine lilies on top of a juicy blood oranges. I notice the feminine lilies over the juicy blood oranges. Together they work together wonderfully creating a beautiful dainty citrus-floral.

This cream is a bit expensive at $8 for 2 oz. but it is such a luxurious pick-me-up to use throughout the day. My job lacks glamor and using this product makes me feel a bit more glamorous. It is available at beautyhabit.com.

(Sorry about being behind on posts. My life has been very crazy lately. I promise I’ll get better about posting. I’ve been trying so many great new products and I can’t wait to share.)

Fragrance & Food:

Pacifica Tuscan Blood Orange wasn’t what I expected it to be at all. I wanted rugged citrus rind/zest mixed with the sweet juices of a blood orange. I wanted something to pick me up in the dead of winter and to be refreshing in the middle of summer. Nope. Instead with this one, I got too much of  juicy berries. It isn’t a bad fragrance, it just wasn’t what I expected.

First things first, I’m not a huge fan of strawberry scents. I find them too synthetic and too young. I don’t mind sniffing strawberry scents on others but I can’t stand to smell it on myself. Tuscan Blood Orange is all about strawberries at the initial spritz, the name should not of been Tuscan Blood Orange. It should be something about strawberries. Strawberry fragrance lovers should know about this fragrance. It should be in the title. Instead Pacifica is giving berry lovers and detour and attracting citrus lovers whom most likely will be disappointed with this fragrance. At first spritz it is very strawberry-ish. Think of a limited edition Escada scent. It is that berry. In a short time, you get the zest of tangerines and oranges. This drowns the strawberry; however, since my sniffer is sensitive to strawberry, I still pick it up. The zesty orange peel hangs around. It starts to mellow out with another berry, raspberry. This takes a bit of the “edge” off of the citrus while keeping it bitter. Eventually the fuse together and create something that would make a delicious tropical cocktail. The berry begins to fade and you get a juicy citrus. This is beautiful, fruity, and refreshing. At this stage, I get blood orange juice and pineapple juice, making this one tropical frou-frou fragrance. Oh, but then there is the strawberry zombie! After I start enjoying the fragrance it then morphs back into the strawberry citrus blend that was the top. But, this time the citrus is less apparent.

The fragrance isn’t bad. It just isn’t me and it isn’t something that I see myself wearing frequently. I can name 10 other citrus scents on the market that I love more. This is a very fruity fragrance. I would of really liked this one if it had a floral to balance the berry or if the berries were left out altogether. I really love the heart of the fragrance but I can’t forgive the berries. It doesn’t help that they keep coming back from the dead. This is a “young” fragrance to me. That being said, it is a fun fragrance. I don’t hate it. Sometimes I do want a tropical cocktail-ish fragrance. The price is right with this one and it does wear longer than a Demeter PMU Cologne spray. I do think of it as more of a summer fragrance but I do fear that the berries will make it to icky and sticky for hot summer days.

The fragrance isn’t very long wearing. But, I think wears nicely for the price. It wears much longer than a body spray and cologne. I smell traces of it about 3 hours after spraying. It wears about the same as more expensive EDTs at department stores. The bottle is small and you could “refresh” throughout the day. Plus, it has natural ingredients.

Notes listed include: strawberry, raspberry, mandarin, and Italian sweet orange.

Give this a try if you like very fruity fragrances, tropical drink like fragrances, LE Escada fragrances, Urban Rituelle Sweet Treats Pomegranete EDP, Comptoir Sud Pacifique Mora Bella EDP, Fresh Strawberry Flowers EDP, Marc Jacobs Daisy In The Air EDT, Ralph Lauren Ralph Wild EDT, and/or Demeter PMU Cologne Sex on the Beach.

The 1.2 oz spray retails for $22. It is available at Sephora and Pacifica’s website.

Also, since this is a delicious fragrance and it makes me think of food, here is a Strawberry Compote with Blood Orange Juice. I would add raspberries to give it the full Pacifica Tuscan Blood Orange touch.

I wouldn’t say that “clean” or “fresh” scents are my favorite genre. I usually like chypres or things with aldehydes or rich florals. However, I really do appreciate a “fresh” scent. They are like the comfort or scents. They seem to “go” with everything and aren’t too offensive for work. And sometimes I just want to smell simple and uncomplicated. You know that, “I’m not wearing a fragrance” kind of fragrance. The Clean fragrance house is a brand for those that love fresh, in the modern sense of the word fragrances. Personally, I find bergamot, certain blossoms, and certain musks very fresh. Anyways, Clean Original isn’t what I expected. In fact, I find it quite odd that the fragrance house has been so successful because of this Original fragrance.

Clean Original’s top notes are very citrusy. But, not in that Mediterranean eau de cologne way. It is very “synthetic” like those Valentine’s day Sweet Hearts/Conversation Hearts. It reminds me of sugary, lemony pastilles made by Choward’s. This is the litsea cubeba AKA May Chang. This note isn’t awful, it is just a little abrasive to my sniffer even though my taste buds love Choward’s lemon pastilles. This note is like a fusion of a sweet candied violet and lemon oil used in flavoring. Like I said, it isn’t bad. For some reason it burns my nose. I think it is because it is so citrusy when mixed with notes like orange, grapefruit, and lime. At times I think that this smells like a dish washing detergent. It reminds me of the smell of some serious cleaning. Other times, I find it less antibacterial soap. It all depends on my mood.  I really like citrus fragrances but I find this one is a bit too clean in a household cleaning product kind of way for me. The citrus hangs around and mixes with the rose geranium. Once again, I think this smells like a household cleaning product because I use Mrs. Meyer’s Rose Geranium scented products! I realize that this is my perspective. I get Choward’s Lemon pastilles and Mrs. Meyer’s Rose Geranium dish washing soap. After about 30 minutes of wear, I start to notice the white musk. This white musk is more of a “cotton” musk or a clean linen type of fragrance. It smells like warm, clean laundry. Since I love the aroma of clean laundry, I really like the dry-down of this EDP. It still has a touch of lemon, but it is much milder. The lemon added to the white musk smells like clean laundry hanging out to dry on a sunny day. This I like.

This fragrance doesn’t wear very long on me. I don’t notice it after about 1.5 hours of wear. I am actually very surprised to see it labeled as an EDP and not an EDT. I really do not see what all of the fuss is about with this fragrance. It’s clean, zesty, and energetic. I don’t like it on myself. If this scent was in a household cleaning product or home fragrance, I would go nuts for it. This is a fragrance that I’d rather have my home and laundry smell like than my skin. So, my verdict is that Clean Original is just too darn “clean”. It’s clean in a clean house way, not in a clean skin/soapy way. It wears on top of my skin, I never feel like it becomes “apart” of me. I love the dry-down but I feel it is a bit low-brow and I can get the same effect with a much cheaper fragrance. I realize that the entire concept of the fragrance is a fragrance that smells “clean” and not like a perfume. I get that. I just think there are better ones out there that fit my personality. I like snuggling linen type fragrances. This one reminds me of all of the cleaning products that I use in my home. Of course I love their aroma, but it isn’t very comforting. This scent reminds me of chores. Not good.

Notes listed include: litsea cubeba, orange, sweet lime, pink grapefruit, passion lily, rose geranium, and white musk.

The scent isn’t bad. It is zesty and fresh. It just reminds me of cleaning. Give this fragrance a try if you like really lemony citrus fragrances, Fresh Sugar Lemon EDP, Tocca Bianca EDP, Malin + Goetz Lime Tonic EDT, L’Occitane Citrus Verbena Summer EDT, Satellite Paris 40 a lombre EDP, and/or Pacifica Malibu Lemon Blossom EDT Spray.

A 2.14 ounce perfume spray retails for $76 and is available at Sephora and beauty.com.


Mainstream Monday: Sniffing A Popular Fragrance:

Ughh, talk about a fragrance that I never want to sniff again…I’m so sick of the Clinique Happy fragrance line. I try not to be. I try to have an open mind. I really do. But, I’m so sick of it. This is one of those fragrances that my generation went nuts over. They then introduced it to their moms,who then went insane over it. Before long, everybody and their sister and mother were wearing this stuff. I would say that this is a fragrance that women love. I didn’t like it then, after revisiting it and trying to keep an open mind, I don’t love it now. But to no surprise, would a closet goth like something named Happy Heart? Um, no.

It’s a citrus-floral. It’s too hissy and aquatic for my liking. It has citrus but it is the kind of citrus that made me think that I hated citrus. I think I avoided citrus for many years because all I could think of was the Clinique Happy fragrance line. At first spray it is hissy in a wet hay way. I would think I would like something like that but this is much too aquatic and soggy. I get a bit overwhelmed by something grapefruity and soggy grasses. There are so many humid florals. I would that this is trying to be a sultry water garden. After about 3-5 minutes, the strange bitterness of citrus mixed with something grassy begins to fade into a full-blown aquatic floral explosion. The floral notes are pretty if you don’t think about them too long. Unfortunately, I think about them too long and they start to hurt my nostrils. It smells overwhelming. I get hot, humid flowers. I don’t know much about water hyacinth, a note listed in this fragrance, but I do know that it is a plant that is super invasive. This is what the floral notes of this fragrance remind me of: an exotic but invasive species. A few of these plants are beautiful but when they won’t go away and start stealing the oxygen of everything around it…not a nice thing. The aquatic florals in this blend take over. They start to devour me and start to feel heavy. I do get a bit of bitter citrus but I can’t get past the weight of the heavy, humid florals. It seriously chokes me. I smell so much plumeria and “lotus” like notes in this that it starts to make me feel light and airy and not in a so-happy-in love way, more of an open-a-window kind of way. Sometimes when I sniff it (the rare occasion where I can think of something other than piercing florals), I smell fruity and cucumber-ish melon note. This makes this blend a little more “flirty” and once again very aquatic with watery fruits. The fruity notes make it “young” and “innocent”. The dry down is a bit more citrusy with clean warmth from light woods. Think pretty, juicy citrus with warm dried out driftwoods.

Notes in this floral as listed by Clinique include: water hyacinth, mandarin, cucumber, yellow primrose, and blond woods.

I find this as a very intense and overwhelming “hissy” fragrance. I know I can’t pull it off and it just doesn’t fit my angsty personality. I know that I am a freak. I can’t watch Friends or eat at chain restaurants. However, I can see why people like this and I do see why they think it is “fresh”. It is so aquatic and humid that it like taking a shower. I can also see why someone would feel “pretty” wearing this. It is very feminine and floral with juicy and sunshine drenched fruits. It is all “girl”, no masculine notes in it. I would say to give this one a try if you like Gwen Stefani LAMB, Juicy Couture EDP, Victoria’s Secret Body EDP, Lilly Pulitzer Squeeze EDP, Dior Addict 2 EDP, Issey Miyake EDT, Tocca Cleopatra EDP, and/or Ralph Lauren Ralph EDT. The 1.7 oz retails for $39.50 and the 3.4 oz. for $52.50. It does wear for a long time, so you are getting a great deal. I think everybody owns or has owned a bottle thanks to GWPs. I have given so many of these little bottles away.

Just like water hyacinth, pretty but choking every living thing in sight.


Happy Heart Perfume for Women Eau De Parfum Spray 1.7 Oz by Clinique

From: BigDiscountFragrances.com

So far I have not met a Diptyque fragrance that I dislike. They are one of my favorite fragrance houses. The fragrances are simple and beautiful and so easy to wear. L’Eau de Tarocco is a beautiful fruity/citrusy but spicy fragrance. It can be worn all year round but I find it to be the perfect winter/cool weather citrus scent.

L’Eau de Tarocco is spicy but nothing like a pomander. It doesn’t smell like Christmas. It’s spicy but not heavy on cloves, nutmeg, etc. It is mainly lush citrus and a hint of spice such as ginger and cinnamon. Citrus scents are perfect for summer because they are light and refreshing but I do think of them for winter since this when they are in season. Having citrus in the dead of winter is such a treat. It opens up as a citrus juice explosion. It has all of the juiciness of sweet tarocco orange (sweeter than a regular ole blood orange), oranges, and a drop of tangy grapefruit. It’s the actual juice of an orange, not sweetened like orange juice.. This is an EDT so this explosion is just an explosion. It fades fairly quickly. I am then left with a bit of “tang” from the memory of citrus juices, a tad bit of spice like ginger and cinnamon. The spice isn’t overwhelming or Noel-ish. It adds some warmth and highlights the certain something of the florals present. This cinnamon/ginger plays so nicely against the orange blossom and softness of other dewy petals. The dry down is light and warm. You can smell the amazing cedar that is used in Diptyque fragrances. The white musk grounds the woods, keeping it “skin like” in quality. It is pretty, clean, and fresh at the dry down. This is a light wearing fragrance, refreshing and energizing. L’Eau de Tarocco contains notes of sweet Italian tarocco orange (yum), Florida orange, grapefruit, saffron, ginger extract, cinnamon, curcuma extract, Bulgarian rose, orange blossom, cedar wood, Somali frankincense, and white musk.

I would say that you would like this or if you like this you should try Parfums des Beaux Arts The Color Orange, Pacifica Tuscan Blood Orange, Jo Malone Blue Agava & Cocoa, Fresh Bergamot Citrus, and/or Guerlian Exclusive Cologne de 68. I would also say that you would like this if  you like light, citrus scents or want something that is “friendly”, not heavy or over the top.  The cologne retails for $98 for the 100ml or $135 for the 200 ml and it is available at beautyhabit.com or barneys.com.