The Mainstream Monday: Sniffing A Popular Scent

Nanette Lepore EDP is a fruity-floral fragrance launched in 2004. I’m not trying to be harsh but I find it dull. It’s a bummer because the bottle is adorable just like Nanette Lepore’s vintage inspired clothing. It isn’t that I dislike the fragrance. It’s pleasant enough. I just think life is too short for me to wear a fragrance that I don’t absolutely love.

The fragrance is fruity and slightly tart at first. I do pick up on the cranberry juice. It’s fruity but not in that typical fruity candy way. This is more like a white peach cranberry Ocean Spray product with musky blackberry. I think what makes this fragrance unlike other fruity-florals launched at the time is that it seems so musky like mûre et musc. It’s like a humid day in August. You smell overripe blackberries waiting and rotting in the sun. That berry musk is always there. Eventually I can “over sniff” it and I do get something fresher and juicier. It’s slightly floral and citrusy on the musky berries. This fades rather quickly. On me, it is more fruity than floral. I can’t really “tell” what the florals are but I pick them up. They are humid florals, greenhouse florals. Throughout the wear I mainly pick up on three things: blackberry musk, litchi, and creamy sandalwood. I think what I don’t love about this fragrance is the sweetness. If it was blackberry musk and litchi, I think I would like it if it had a strong woodsy dry-down such as a red cedar dry-down. That would be very elegant. This blend the way that it is, is very creamy sweet with very ripe fruits. I don’t think the flowers really help the blend. I really can’t pick up on the violet ( I think a candied violet would work in this). I get generic “bouquet” flowers and I swear I can smell the floral preservative. The dry-down is sweet, sweet, sweet. It’s a creamy sandalwood that I often sniff out in Victoria’s Secret perfumes.

This fruity floral is a bit more “grown up” than other fruity florals because of the muskiness. It doesn’t smell like a body spray marketed to tweens. It smells “sexier” than most fruity florals because of the heavy dose of creamy sandalwood and musks. (In college we called these type of fragrances “club”perfumes- warm, sweet, musky, “young” but not too young). I don’t think this is a bad fragrance it just isn’t a “me” fragrance. If I had a full-size bottle, I wouldn’t see myself ever picking it up. ( I see myself wearing Cacharel Amor Amor even though the bottle is uglier if I wanted a popular, “sexy” fruity floral). As far as wear, I think it wears OK for an EDP. I notice it hours after wear.

Notes listed include: moonstone rose, white peach, cranberry juice, blackcurrant, orange jasmine, lime juice, violet, amber, and Indian sandalwood.

Give this one a try if you like scents like Gucci II EDP, Cacharel Amor Amor EDP, L’Artisan Parfumeur Mûre et Musc EDP, Victoria’s Secret Supermodel EDP, Victoria’s Secret Parfum Intimes Velvet Amber EDP, Mistral Wild Blackberry EDP, Trish McEvoy #9 Blackberry & Musk EDP, Hanae Mori Eau de Collection #1 EDP, The Different Company Sublime Balkiss EDP, Givenchy Hot Couture EDT, Escada Magnetism EDP, and/or DKNY Delicious Night EDT. (See I told you that there are many fragrances like it out there!)

The 1 oz. spray retails for $38. There is also a travel roll-on for $18. This fragrance is available at Sephora. It is also available at fragrancenet.com.

So far, I am really loving Les Garçonnes fragrance collection. Pompon Gardenia is an amazing heady white floral blend with sweet lime. This is one of my favorite white florals ever. I love a super feminine white floral and this is a winner with its blend of gardenia, lilies, and lime.

I assume that the inspiration for Pompon Gardenia was François Pompon, a 20’s era sculptor and Rodin’s assistant. I’ve always remembered him for his sleek chouettes. But, it could just be pompon as a fashion accessory. I don’t know for sure and I really don’t care. I love the sleek and portable, ecological cardboard packaging. It’s a lovely poppy print with rich green and mauve. I peeled a bunch of ’36 era wallpaper in my rehab home that reminded me of this print and color scheme.

At first Pompon Gardenia is a lush, humid white gardenia. There is a faint aroma of watermelon and gardenia. This doesn’t smell like a Jolly Rancher watermelon hard candy or too fruity. It just adds a humid quality to the gardenia, something that is more a sweet aquatic quality than just “aquatic”. It’s more “watermelon rind”, a bit green and fresh, bitter and sweet,  and what is keeping it from being like a candy-esque body spray. The sweet lime is an amazing touch to this blend. I love limes for their tart fruitiness and slight sweetness. We always have them around the kitchen. I love the smell that they leave on my hands. It is very beautiful and I always thought it would be perfect with a heady floral. Pompon Gardenia has a very pleasant slightly bitter but mostly sweet type of lime. I’m talking you smell the entire little sweet lime, including zest and juicy pulp. It’s beautiful. All of these fruits mix with dainty white lily of the valley (very understated in comparison) and big, white gardenias. Gardenia works very well with these fruits because gardenia has a slightly fruity aroma anyways. Eventually, the fragrance becomes a strong gardenia fragrance with a sweet lime twist, the watermelon rind fades, so do the other dainty white flowers. After a bit of wear, you pick up on the faintest and mildest tobacco ever. In fact the 1st few weeks that I wore this, I could barely pick up on it. It has been many, many years since I smelled the warmness and hay like quality of dried, light tobacco. I ended up wearing this one day in the summer and my husband drug me to a cigar shop. There I smelled the lovely jars of various flavored and unflavored tobacco. I smelled some that the owner referred to as “mild” and “blonde”. I could then smell this ever so slightly in this solid fragrance blend. It is faint and definitely overshadowed by the white florals. It does add some much needed warmth to the blend. Don’t let the tobacco fool you. This is not a smoky blend, “dry”,  nor is it even close to being masculine. This is a pretty girl wearing an old-fashioned gardenia perfume oil and red lipstick in a quaint tobacco shop. That’s it.

This fragrance isn’t what I expected it to be. When I read the notes when it was launched, I was thinking of something much more dry, smokier with a  less fruity gardenia, and maybe the kind of sweet lime wedge that has been swimming in honey colored whiskey. I was thinking something to wear in cooler weather. I was thinking of a sexy but desperate 20’s lady at a smoky bar with messy, uneven pin-curls. This is much more feminine, alive, pretty, and almost coy. It’s much more 40’s cheesecake pin-up. It is glowing with a bright red lipstick smile exposing more than pearly whites. It’s perfect like a Vargas created girl. Like I said, it wasn’t what I expected but it is something that I really like. I am happy that I bought it. It’s fairly simple aquatic gardenia with lime with a very slight tobacco dry warmth.

It retails for about $16 and is available at b-glowing.com and beautyhabit.com. It’s a great price, cute vintage packaging, and wears for a few hours without any touch-ups. I’m touching up my red lipstick more frequently than this stuff.

lindencollage

Linden/linden flower is such a pretty, bubbly, and flirty scent. It is one of my favorites for spring and summer and lately I haven’t been able to get enough of it. It’s a slightly honey-ish floral in a honeysuckle way and tart like a lime blossom. It brings back sweet memories of linden tea and linden honey in early summer. If you are a fan of citrus blossom fragrance then I think you’ll love linden like I do. I love this scent but it can be difficult to “find”, so that’s why I’ve put this “collage” together. I want to help myself and others find a place to start when finding that perfect linden based fragrance.

Budget Linden: I have raved about it before for its true linden-ness, Le Provence Santé Tilleul/Linden. It retails for $27 for a big, simple looking bottle. This is an EDT so lasting power isn’t so great  but it smells amazing. This is the “truest” linden fragrance that I have found, it is a single note. Tokyomilk Pafum has a gorgeous floral linden with delicate touches of rose and wisteria, Waltz (I have raved about this one also). This scream femininity and retails for $28 for 1 ounce. It comes in a really cute bottle. A nice white floral linden blend is Voluspa Floraison Linden Blond Tabac, it’s a heady blend of tuberose and linden. It’s ultra femme and flirty. The 1 ounce cute travel spray goes for $18. Demeter has a Linden that goes for $20 for 1 ounce. It smells lovely but the lasting power isn’t hot. I hate to include a limited edition fragrance, but MAC has a nice one for $25, Naked Honey, it is a bit like sweet linden honey. I recommend trying it while you can.

More Expensive: A complicated but beautiful linden that contains notes of lily of the valley, ylang-ylang, and vetiver, Pafrums DelRae Début EDP, $135 for 1.7 ounces. A fruity, “young” feeling linden is Trance Essence Whyte Rabbit which retails for $90 for the largest bottle, a roll-on oil is also available and is cheaper. I love the playful, bubbly floral of L’Artisan Parfumeur La Chasse Aux Papillons EDT. It is a fun floral with linden, citrus blossoms, and jasmine. It’s so beautiful and I find myself using it frequently. This retails for $95. I like the “moodiness” of Annick Goutal Eau de Ciel. It’s a wet and rainy blend of linden, violet, and iris. It goes for $115. This fragrance contains linden but is heavy on lots of other stuff like aquatic and wood notes, Estee Lauder Pure Linen Light Breeze. It  manages to be playful and fresh with linden blossom. The largest bottle goes for $72.

This is my “beginners” list, if you have any others to share, please do. I am always on the “smell-out” for linden based fragrances. They just make me happy.