I love the scent of honeysuckle. It’s such a nostalgic scent for me. What I have realized after I moved across the country, is that honeysuckle isn’t the same. It appears to vary from region to region. In our back yard here in the PNW, we have these orange honeysuckle blossoms. The blossoms smell jasmine-ish and sweet, but they are far less sweeter and honey-ish than the white ones that I grew up with in the South. I’ve tried to keep an open mind to the different honeysuckle based fragrances that I try. I try to keep in mind that there is more than one honeysuckle and many fragrance houses use the term loosely. Here is a list of honeysuckle based fragrances in a variety of price points. Every spring I get a honeysuckle “bug”. I’m sure I will this year too. Please share any that you like so that I can give them a try. One of my favorites was the now discontinued Cynthia Rowley EDP (not the Avon one). It was heavy on honeysuckle and many other flirty florals.

Bargain Honeysuckle Scents: Yves Rocher has Fraîcheur Vegetale Honeysuckle/Chevrefeuille Cologne, it is light-wearing but very pretty and refreshing. It retails for $20 (watch the website for mega-sales and BOGO). Melissa Flagg Clementine (my review) is one of my favorite scents with its blend of orange blossom and honeysuckle. It retails for $32. Now a solid is available. I haven’t tried it yet. Bath & Body Works Wild Honeysuckle EDT is much more floral than sweet and retails for $26.50. A single note honeysuckle is Demeter Honeysuckle which retails for $20. It is pretty and I only wish it would last longer! Mary Kay has an EDT, Sparkling Honeysuckle, that is sunny and fresh. It retails for $25.

More Expensive Honeysuckle Scents: A classic honeysuckle soliflore is Calypso Chevrefeuille EDT that retails for $55. An intoxicating honeysuckle scent is Jo Malone Honeysuckle & Jasmine Cologne. Jasmine and honeysuckle were meant to be together in a blend. The largest bottle retails for $100. A fresh and flirty honeysuckle oh, and a classic is Annick Goutal Le Chevrefeuille EDT. The largest size gos for $115. Creed Chevrefeuille is rugged and “pastoral” kind of honeysuckle, much more green than the others listed. I like it and it retails for about $150. It really does stand apart from the others listed.

Plus 5 More Nice Honeysuckle Blends: Miller Harris Fleur de Matin is a green, fresh scent with honeysuckle. I think of it as a nice summer honeysuckle. Cielo Napa Valley (my review) is a blend that is heavier on fig and honey but the addition of honeysuckle type notes are very nice. It’s a sweet fragrance that I love for fall.  Harajuku Lovers Music EDT is a sweeter honeysuckle scent with adorable packaging. I love the crisp “green” with honeysuckle in Annick Goutal Eau de Camille. It is so easy to wear and very flirty. Victoria’s Secret Dream Angel’s Wish EDP is a very fruity floral with a kiss of honeysuckle. It isn’t my favorite in the list, but I feel I should list it.

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Parfums des Beaux Arts by DSH Cafe Noir is a moody, rich fragrance. I love it. I call it “beatnik in a bottle”. It’s smart and sophisticated and a bit counter-culture (if a perfume can be described as such). It reminds me of a classic French perfume created for the kind of gal that spends late nights/early mornings reading Lawrence Ferlinghetti by the fireplace, sipping on midnight black coffee.

DSH describes this spicy oriental luxury perfume as “a Paris night…Dark and sophisticated, it evokes late concerts in smoke filled rooms…sipping coffee and listening to jazz.” I love when I create an “impression” in my head when I wear a fragrance before I read about it and it actually “fits” what the creator was going for. I haven’t spent late nights in Josephine Baker-ish Parisian jazz clubs, but I have spent many insomniac moments at 4 o’clock in the morning reading “A Coney Island of the Mind” turning each page with fingers decorated with deep merlot nails. This scent reminds me of “beat” poetry.

My first impression of this fragrance creates a bit of confusion in my mind. I know that I like it but I find it very odd. It hits as if it is a spicy, mossy, dirty, chypre. It smells a bit wild and untamed and actually hot. It reminds me of all of those classic Guerlains like Mitsouko but Cafe Noir is much dirtier and grittier and with a kick of spice. It reminds me of moss and Atomic Fire Balls. You just know like beat poetry, that this is a fragrance with so much to say. Once my mind finally gets that this is a dirty, spicy chypre, I get an unexpected “shot” of bitter coffee beans. To add to even more complexity, I get lovely “classic” perfumey. I get rich, thick Parisian florals of rose and jasmine. But, it isn’t classic because of the bitter coffee. The dry down is moody and fairly simple. It has smoky incense like copal rich sweetness with grounding notes of vanilla, labdanum, and balsam. It is like being in a room where incense was once burning. It is slightly smoky but mostly you get the sweetness of the smoke floating through the air. I can not imagine my perfume collection without Cafe Noir in it. This one is very special.

This blend contains 99% botanical ingredients. Notes listed include: bergamot, black pepper, cinnamon bark, pimento berry, benzoin, Bulgarian rose, jasmine, labdanum, coffee absolute, tolu balsam, and vanilla. I would say to give this fragrance a try if you are looking for an interesting and moody fragrance or if you like Jo Malone Black Vetyver Cafe Cologne, Penhaligon’s Endymion Cologne, Mark Buxton Nameless EDP, Maitre Parfumeur et Gantier Eau de Iles, L’Artisan Parfumeur Eau du Navigateur EDT, and/or Hilde Soliani Bell’Antonio EDP. I must say that the biggest difference between those listed and Parfums des Beaux Arts Cafe Noir is that Cafe Noir is rich and long-lasting and natural. This is no cologne. An 1 ounce parfum spray goes for $135. It is available on the fragrance house’s website. More sizes are available.

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Mmmm, ginger. It has a great flavor and a great fragrance. This rhizome is spicy, warming, but still fresh, earthy, and a bit “green”. It is a note that works well in warmer climates and it is a note that does well in cooler weather. Now that the nights are getting cooler, I am more attracted to the “warmth” that ginger gives. Right now I am craving “spicy” ginger/gingerbread-ish scents. I know that in the middle of summer I’ll love some of those “green” ginger scents.

Bargain Ginger Scents: For some reason I think when other people think of ginger scents they automatically think of Origins Ginger Essence Skin Scent. It is a very nice scent and one of my favorite ginger scents on the market. It is refreshing with citrus and warming with ginger. It’s therapeutic. The 1.7 oz spray retails for $37. The price is nice too. A  beach friendly ginger scent is Urban Rituelle Beachcomber Coconut & Ginger. The travel sized spray goes for $10. Apivita Spice Fragrance is what the name says, “spice” which is a blend of ginger, bergamot, caraway. The travel sized spray goes for $12. Demeter has three colognes worth mentioning: Gingerale (one of my favorite Demeter fragrances, smells like the real deal, fizzy and everything), Gingerbread (great winter comfort scent), Ginger Cookie (a sweeter version of gingerbread, also nice for winter), and Fresh Ginger (smells like the real thing). All of these come in a 1 oz for $20.

More Expensive Ginger Scents (over $50): Lush Ginger Perfume is a slightly fruity-floral ginger blend with classic florals and juniperberry. The 1.3 oz. spray goes for about $60. Yosh Ginger Ciao is an interesting ginger blend with black coconut, ylang-ylang, and neroli. It is like a tropical ginger scent, an island ginger. The perfume oil goes for $130. If you want a spicy ginger scent, try Jo Malone Nutmeg & Ginger Cologne. It’s warm, woody, and zesty. I like it for cooler weather. The 3.4 oz bottle retails for $100. A spicy, woodsy ginger blend is Van Cleef & Arpels Exclusive Cologne Noire EDP. It has cardomom (one of my weaknesses), bitter citrus, and woods. It retails for $185. It is more like gingerbread with hot tea and that is why I love this scent for winter: Serge Lutens Five O’Clock Au Gingembre. It’s a warming, comforting fragrance (that’s an understatement). The 1.7 oz bottle goes for $120. Cinq Modes Pluie d’Aromes Ritual de Kyoto, Japan is a ginger floral with ginger and rose. I do love a spicy rose scent. The 1.7 oz goes for $85. Montale Ginger Musk is a romantic ginger blend with berries and white musk. The 1.7 oz goes for $95. A nice summer ginger is Hilde Soliani Freschiiissimo. This is a fresh blend of lime, brown sugar, and ginger. Doesn’t that sound like it would make a great mixed drink? The 3.4 oz goes for $175. If you want a green, almost foresty, ginger try Vero Profumo Onda. It has vetiver, ginger, mace, and coriander. The perfume oil retails for $185. Parfums des Beaux Arts by DSH (neither pictured) has two ginger based scents. Gingembre (my review here) is a spicy, wintery, warming gourmand. The 1 oz. EDP goes for $70. The other is more of a summery, citrus ginger, Indochine. This one is loaded with citrus, basil, and white flowers. The 1 oz EDP goes for $65.

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Tuberose is one of my favorite notes. It’s intoxicating, enchanting, and so feminine. It’s for a confident woman who isn’t scared to be a little over the top. It is many fragrances so I narrowed this “collage” down for the tuberose enthusiast, for the person wanting a tuberose heavy scent. As you may notice, it’s a luxe note so you will see more in the “expensive” category.

Bargain Tuberose Scents: Tokyomilk Pafum French Kiss is a lovely white floral blend heavy on tuberose and gardenia. It is a steal at $28 for 1 oz. A slightly sweet and exotic tuberose scent is Voluspa Victoria Collection Tuberosa Agave Roll-On. It smells of tuberose and coconut milk. It retails for $25 for half an ounce. Parfums des beaux Arts Tubereuse EDP is a pure tuberose soliflore. It’s one of my favorite “tuberose” scents. It retails for $27 for 1/4 oz. Filles des Iles Floral Exotique is a sultry blend of tuberose, orange flower, and jasmin. The .33 oz. roller-ball retails for $18. I know it isn’t a “budget” scent but the roll-on available at Sephora is a nice deal. Piguet Fracas is a lovely scent with tuberose and the adorable roller-ball retails for $25. It has always defined the tuberose scent for me.  DL & Co. Angel’s Trumpet is a nice blend of night blooming florals like tuberose and angel’s trumpet. The roller-ball retails for $45.

More Expensive Tuberose Scents: Jo Malone Tuberose cologne is a pure, intoxicating tuberose fragrance. The 3.4 oz. bottle goes for $100. Estee Lauder Private Collection Tuberose Gardenia is a must have for the white floral lover. It is a lovely marriage of tuberose and gardenia. The pure parfum comes in a beautiful bottle that resembles jewelry and retails for $325. It is also available in a less expensive EDP spray. Jean Patou Joy is a classic floral heavy on tuberose. The 2.5 EDt goes for $110. If you like Piguet Fracas then give Joy a try. This fragrance brought tuberose pack into the scene: Michael Kors EDP. It’s a moden tuberose fragrance, still very sexy and classy. The largest bottle goes for $90. L’Artisan Parfumeur Tubereuse is a sweet and exotic tuberose scent with coconut and ylang-ylang too. The 3.4 oz. bottle retails for $135 and it smells like a tropical vacation. Creed Tubereuse Indiana is a sexy tuberose soliflore with ambergris hints that keep it grounded. The 2.5 oz. bottle goes for $210. Editions de Parfums Carnal Flower (gross sounding name, I know) is a nice tuberose interpretation. It retails for about $195. Profumi Capri Capri Night is a romantic blend of tuberose and gardenia. It retails for $62. This is a beautiful scent, a simple blend of tuberose and jasmine: Profumum Tuberosa. It seems simple but it sexy. It retails for $240.

Parfums des Beaux Arts by DSH Gingembre is a perfect cool weather fragrance. I live in Washington, not just anywhere, around the Puguet Sound: Western Washington. We are known for our massive amounts of gloom and rain. For a closet goth and a mushroom hunter, this is paradise. I love the cooler, foggy,  seaside days. The rain is here just like clockwork starting on October 1st. It’s a bit chilly (50’s), cloudy, and rainy. If you’ve ever visited this area during the rainy season, then you know why we love our coffee. It is the only thing that warms you up and gives you energy during this season (even though many of us are into our tea). Today I am wearing Gingembre. It is my comforting travel mug of steaming dark roast and cashmere blended hoodie on this cool, rainy, classic PNW day.

Gingembre is spicy and comforting. If you love gingerbread or ginger snaps then you should love this. At first it feels and smells like the steam off of a masala coffee or chai. It’s spicy with nutmeg, allspice, anise, and clove. The ginger comes in, more of a dried powder, Indian market ginger. This scent then becomes my spice cabinet. You can smell the gourmand spices mixed with ginger powder. It has a bit of beeswax which adds so much to this fall/winter spice blend. It gets a little sweeter but not super sweet like a spice cake with cream cheese icing. This is more like a chai with a sugar or honey. If you pay close attention you can get a bit of a floral, like a honeyed, dried rose. It’s so beautiful. The great thing about the PNW is that this time of year you crave fall baked goods heavy with ginger and cloves, hot beverages, you smell the ground which is soaked, mossy, mushroomy. But, it isn’t “dying”. There are many evergreens and roses are late. We get roses up until November. It just delights me that this perfect fall/winter fragrance has rose. The dry down is delicious like a handsome man wearing a cologne heavy on patchouli and resins while sipping suavely on spiced rum in front of a blazing fireplace.

This one is a keeper for me. I thought my favorite ginger scent was Serge Lutens Five O’Clock au Gingembre, but  right now I love this one more. Five O’Clock is more of the aroma of a moist, baking gingerbread cookie ready to come out of the oven. This one is more of a crispy gingersnap and a cup of comforting chai. This being said, I think this is a nice unisex scent. It’s sexy on either a man or a woman.

I would say that you would like this if you are looking for a fall/winter ginger scent (not a tropical or fresh ginger), something  like Serge Lutens Five O’Clock au Gingembre , Jo Malone Nutmeg & Ginger Cologne, Laura Mercier Minuit Enchanté, L’Artisan Parfumeur Navegar, Armani Prive Ambre Soie, Perfumerie Generale Un Crime Exotique, Mark Buxton Sounds & Visions, and/or Bois 1920 Sushi Imperiale.

This fragrance is made from 94.5% botanical ingriedients. It’s long-wearing, very realistic and natural. The 1 oz. spray goes for $70 and other sizes are available. It is available on the fragrance house’s website.

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Who doesn’t love lavender on those late summer days or nights? I never knew I loved lavender so much until I moved to an area with many lavender farms. Even I can grow tons of lavender here. I love to have the doors open and just let the breeze carry the aroma throughout the house. There are many lavender products on the market and I have “collected” a few. If you have any others please share. Usually if I want all out lavender I use an oil from one of the local farms. I know a few companies have launched fragrances with lavender but I haven’t given those a try yet (like Acca Kappa White Moss and Lostmarch L’eau de l’Hermine).

Budget Lavender Scents: A light wearing, sweet lavender fragrance is Body Fantasies Body Spray in Clean Lavender Vanilla. The scent is a bit sweet for my tastes but it isn’t horrible. It makes a nice linen spray as well. It retails for $7. Apivita Lavender Fragrance Spray is a fresh lavender. It retails for $12 for .33 oz.  Provence Sante Lavande EDT (my favorite budget lavender) is a great lavender scent for the lavender purist. It retails for about $30 for 3.5 oz. Yves Rocher Pur Desir Lavender EDT is lavender with a hint of wood. It retails for $22 for 2 oz. L’Aromarine Lavande Perfume Oil is a long wearing and pretty strong lavender scent. It retails for $9.50. L’Occitane Joyful Mood Touch Fragrance is a take along fragrance. It is a sweeter, feminine lavender blend. It retails for $20. Another great travel friendly lavender scent is Bonny Doon Farm Lavender Creme Parfum. It goes for $16 (not pictured).

More Expensive Lavender Scents: Jo Malone Amber & Lavender Cologne is a very rich, sensual lavender scent. It makes lavender sexy. The 3.4 oz. bottle goes for $100. LaVanila Vanilla Lavender is a sweet lavender scent. It’s very comforting and the spray goes for $56. Yardley Lavender EDT was one of my first fragrances ever. It is a pure lavender, almost medicinal. It’s $55 for over 4 ounces. Potter & Moore Lavender & Italian Lemon EDT is a super refreshing lavender that is perfect for summer. It’s fresh and light-wearing. It retails for $42 for 3.4 oz. Lollia Relax EDP is a sweet, comforting lavender floral blend. It retails for $46 for 3.4 oz. Parfums DelRae Eau Illuminée is a beautiful herbaceous lavender, almost “hippie” blend. It goes for $135 for 1.7 oz. Surge Lutens Gris Clair is a bewitching smoky lavender scent. It goes for $120 for 1.7 oz. Acqua di Parma Colonia is a classic refreshing citrus, herbal lavender blend. The 3.4 bottle retails for $117. I love Diptyque Eau d’Elide EDT. It is a “shrubby” lavender blend. The 1.7 bottle goes for $88.

Other Lovely Lavender Items: Diptyque Feuille de Lavande Candle is so relaxing. It’s the perfect at home scent. Candle goes for $60. L’Occitane Lavender Harvest Hand Creme is a rich formula with a soothing scent. This cute tube goes for $20. Ombra Lavender Bath Foam is a super concentrated lavender scent. It is perfect for those rotten days that life throws us. The bottle goes for about $10. Boscia Lavender Blotting Linens are great for mid-day shine. Plus, the lavender scent is very soothing. A pack goes for $10. Agraria Tassle Air is a cool product and it comes in a Lavender & Rosemary fragrance, perfect for the bedroom and it is so fresh! These retail for $40.

lavender field in Sequim, WA

This summer I have been all about the citrus. I can’t get enough of citrus or citrus blossom scents. Perhaps it is the record breaking heatwave that swept through the Pacific Northwest or maybe it’s just time for me to go through this phase. I haven’t really gotten into citrus scents. I didn’t think they were “me” and I felt like my skin ate it up. I also thought they weren’t very artsy blends. I just didn’t have respect for them. Well, this summer I have been sampling every citrus scent that I can find. This week’s wear has been Guerlain Aqua Allegoria Mandarine-Basilic EDT. If you know me, you know that there isn’t a Guerlain fragrance out there that I don’t love. This isn’t the most sophisticated Guerlain out there, but I do like it. It really hits the spot when the weather is 80+.

Mandarine-Basilic is a fresh citrus scent. It claims to have these notes: orange blossom, white peony, green tea, ivy, Roman chamomile, mandarin, basil, amber, and sandalwood.  It wears about the same on me all the way through. It is really difficult to sniff out these different notes. It smells of a refreshing beverage. The mandarin orange is what I notice the most. It’s a sweet citrus fragrance that reminds me of the juice from a clementine. It’s an easy to wear fragrance, not heavy on the herbaceous notes of basil. You smell a bit of the herb garden/vegetable garden. It just smells “green” and fresh but very pretty and not a bit rugged or masculine. This is a girly citrus. After a few hours of wear, the dry down is a faintly citrus and woody. It isn’t the most “wow” producing fragrance and it is a bit generic, but I do really like it. However, I am more of the Imperiale customer if I am looking for a refreshing summer fragrance. AA Mandarine-Basilic is just so pretty and more feminine than Imperiale and gentler and kinder than AA Pamplelune.

The scent wears for about 2-4 hours on me during pretty intense heat. It’s lovely throughout the wear and not a bit heavy. It’s a great summer scent, great for everyday or in a work environment. It’s citrusy, green, clean, and fresh. I would say to give this a try if you like mandarin citrus scents, Jo Malone Lime Basil & Mandarin Cologne, Balm Balm Mandarin EDP, L’Artisan Parfumeur Mandarin tout Simplement EDT, Marc Jacobs Lemon Splash Cologne, and/or Fresh Bergamot Citrus EDP. The 2.5 oz bottle goes for $57 and is available at Sephora.