Ylang-ylang is a note that I have learned to love. It’s tenacity always turned me off. I never felt like I could pull-off such a heady, floral note. As I’ve “matured” to put it nicely, I’ve realized that I can pull-off ylang-ylang. If you can pull-off jasmine than you can do ylang-ylang. It’s a special fragrance, very exotic for me since I’ve shunned it for so many years. Here is a very brief ylang-ylang fragrance guide with varying price points.

Budget Ylang-Ylang Scents: Lush Flower Market Perfume is an old-fashioned blend of ylang-ylang, carnation, and violets. I like the scent but I get so overwhelmed in Lush markets that I can’t pull this apart. So, I assume that I really like this natural blend. The 1.3 oz goes for about $40. Cacharel Anaïs Anaïs EDT is a floral blend with ylang-ylang, jasmine, rose, and lilies. It’s a nice scent that unfortunately now is seen as old-fashioned. The 1.7 oz. spray goes for under $50. Demeter PMU in Ylang Ylang is a pure, tropical, short-wearing soliflore. The 1 oz spray goes for $20. Demter PMUs also make nice linen/room sprays. Nuts Cream Perfume in Ylang Ylang d’Amore (not pictured)  is a nourishing cream perfume that is heavy on this tropical, romantic floral in a moisturizing solid form. It goes for $12. Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab Ars Amatoria Suspiro is a intoxicating white floral blend with exotic white blossoms and dainty lilies. Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab Excolo Skuld is a sweet and sticky ylang-ylang with honey and resins. (Both are not pictured and retail for $15 for .5 oz oil).

Moe Expensive Ylang-Ylang Scents: Estee Lauder Private Collection Amber Ylang-Ylang EDP is a warm, rich, sexy ylang-ylang based scent. It’s a nice modern oriental. The 2.5 oz spray goes for $135. There is a pure parfum with a breathtaking bottle that costs much more and I haven’t had the opportunity to sample it. Tom Ford Private Blends Musk Pure EDP goes for $180 for 1.7 oz. Imagine a ylang-ylang, tonka, and musk and you have this. I like it for a floral musk scent. The ylang-ylang feels almost powdery against the musk. A more floral ylang-ylang based scent is Henry Dunay Sabi EDP. It has floral notes of ylang-ylang, rose, and jasmine. It retails for $110 for 1.7 oz. Annick Goutal Songes EDT is a tropical floral blend of ylang-ylang, frangipani, jasmine with a dry-down of vanilla. The 1.7 oz retails for $80.

Advertisements

gingercollage

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.

It’s that time of year again. Mandarins, satsumas, whatever you like to call them, are at market to be purchased by the boxful. Citrus is a nice treat during these cool winter months. I’ve compiled a “collage” of zesty mandarin fragrances with a variety of price points and formulas.

Budget Mandarin Scents (Under $50): Trish McVoy Mandarin & Ginger Lily EDT is a citrus floral blend that is light-wearing. It retails for $48 for .5 oz (not alot of product for the dough). Crazylibellule & The Poppies Les Garçonnes Tamara Charleston is a very interesting humid, green, mandarin blend. This solid Crazystick retails for $18 and is well worth it. My review of it is here. Lush Olive Branch Solid Perfume is a simple and refreshing unisex blend of olive oil and mandarins. I love the solid formula. tIt retails for about $8. Lancome Ô de Lancome EDT is a classic, cool feeling mandarin, floral, and rosemary scent. The 1.7 oz. bottle goes for $38.50.  Voluspa Victoria Collection Pink Fatale is an incredible flirty fruity-floral with citrus and lilies. The .5 oz. roll-on goes for $24. Oh, and I almost forgot the mandarin classic: The Body Shop Satsuma Perfume Oil. It’s all about mandarin and the .5 oil goes for $16. (not pictured)

More Expensive Mandarin Scents: Jo Malone Lime Basil & Mandarin Cologne is a zesty, herbaceous citrus blend that is unisex. It’s a great summer scent. The 3.4 oz bottle goes for $100. It’s a limited edition fragrance but it is still available: L’Artisan Parfumeur Mandarine Tout Simplement. It is what the name implies. It is a sparkling mandarin citrus blend. It is light wearing and the 8.4 oz. spray goes for $135. If you are looking for a creamier mandarin fragrance, the kind that can transition into cooler weather even though it is refreshing, try Antica Farmacista Vanilla Bourbon and Mandarin Perfume. The 1.6 oz. bottle goes for $58. Guerlain Aqua Allegoria Madarine Basilic EDT is a naturally sweet citrus blend with clementine, mandarin, and blood orange. The 1.7 oz bottle goes for $57. Here’s my review. Manuel Canovas Route Mandarine EDP is a mandarin and orange blossom mix, a citrus floral. It retails for $79 for 3.4 oz. Fresh Bergamot Citrus is a light blend of bergamot, citrus, and foresty base notes. The 3.4 oz. retails for $75. Creed Millesime Imperial is a unisex blend of crisp citrus, salt, musk, and woods. It is truly lovely and goes for $250 for 4 oz. (I just ordered one and I’m waiting anxiously for its arrival). Molinard 1849 Vervaine de Molinard is a green, crisp, fresh mandarin. Plus, the bottle is a must have. The 3.3 oz goes for $185.

5 Other Great Mandarin Products: Mistral Black Tea Mandarin Soap is a great scent for cooler weather. A bar goes for under $8. Ahava Body Sorbet in Madarin & Cedarwood is a refreshing and very moisturizing blend. The cedarwood really adds a special something. I love it for cooler weather. It is very foresty. A tub goes for $26. Lush The Big Tease Styling Gel is a hair gel with an orange blossom, mandarin, and lemon scent. It smells heavenly. It goes for under $17. Diptyque Oyedo Candle is a refreshing blend of grapefruit and mandarin. The candle retails for $60. A rich and lush mandarin fragrance for the home is Alora Ambiance Tre Reed Diffuser which goes for $58.

caramelcollage

Caramel isn’t my everyday go to kind of fragrance note. It’s very sweet and creamy. That being said that is the reason I will go to it. Sometimes I just want something rich, sweet, and creamy. I love it when it has a burnt quality like dulce de leche. Here’s a caramel fragrance guide that I’ve thrown together, covering all price points. It’s for the gooey caramel lover and the occasionally burnt sugary caramel flirt.

Budget Caramel Scents (Under $50): French West Indies Caramel EDT is a “pure” caramel scent, sweet and lush. The 4 oz. bottle retails for $42. Demeter Cologne PMU has Caramel, a rich, gooey caramel and Dulce de Leche, a gourmand caramel. This is one that I really like for my “fix”. The 1 oz. sprays go for $20. (Neither of these are very long-lasting). Carol’s Daughter Pearls EDT is a foody blend of juicy citrus-floral with a vanilla and caramel base. The 2.5 oz spray retails for $45. Laura Mercier Creme Brulee EDT is what the name implies. It’s rich and foody. The 1.7 oz bottle retails for $50. mark Jewel EDT is a blend of fruits and florals with a caramel dry-down. This gourmand in a 1.5 oz. spray retails for $20.

More Expensive Caramel Scents: This is not to my liking but it does contain a pretty heavy dose of caramel along with other sweets and a few florals: Juicy Couture Viva La Juicy EDP. The 3.4 oz spray goes for $85 and it is a longer wearing fragrance. Dior Miss Dior Chérie EDP is a sweet gourmand that even I can like. It is more “caramelized” with strawberries, greens, and patchouli. The 3.4 bottle goes for $92. Estee Lauder Pleasures Delight EDP is a dessert with your florals kind of fragrance. It has caramel along with marshmallow and flirty florals like freesia and peony. The 3.4 oz goes for $72. Acqua di Parma Arancia de Capri EDT is a sensual citrus fragrance with a lush caramel base that isn’t overwhelming. The 2 oz. goes for $68. Comptoir Sud Pacifique Caramel Sunset EDT is a coconut and caramel blend. It’s a tropical caramel. The 1.7 oz retails for $53.

5 Other Great Caramel Items: Philosophy Creme Brulee 3-in-1 gel is rich and foody. It retails for $16 and the dessert like aroma will not linger after the shower. Slatkin & Co. Home Fragrance Oil Vanilla Caramel lingers in the home for sometime. A bottle retails for $7.50. Lush Vanilla Fountain Bath Bomb is a luxurious bath item. It is like a creme brulee for the bath. It goes for about $6. Diana B. Foaming Facial Sugar Scrub is almost creme brulee-ish in fragrance.  A tube retails for $50.

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

blackberrycollage

Well even here in the PNW, summer is almost over. This doesn’t mean that the weather will get horrible (autumn is my favorite season).  It just means that we have a few more weeks of sunshine 🙂 The brambles still have lots of ripe blackberries and will continue to for a few more weeks. I love blackberries. They are one of my favorite things of summer even if they signal the “end”. I love the smell of picking blackberries with the mix of leaves and dried out dead grass. I love the smell of sweet blackberries and their juiciness that stains your finger tips (why can’t I find a lipstain that color?). I love the smell of overripe blackberries. These do get almost musk like and floral. Since we have been renovating intensively, I haven’t had the time to bust out my favorite blackberry recipes. I was able to freeze a few reductions ranging from basic blackberry to blackberry, lemon, lavender which is amazing on angel food cake. We threw a few in salads and ate them by the handfuls. But, I didn’t make my sweets this year because life has been to hectic. Anyways, here is a guide of blackberry fragrances ranging in prices. Since blackberry is a musky fruity scent, it is often made more “sensual” by adding vanilla. I would love to find a blackberry scent that is more tangy and bitter and perhaps “living” but mixed with dried grass/hay, more of an “early” blackberry fragrance. My 2 favorites out of this list include: Parfums DelRae Bois de Paradis because it is a bit “darker” than the others and L’Artisan Parfumeur Mûre et Musc Extreme because it is a fruity scent that isn’t childish or teen.

Budget Blackberry Scents: Yves Rocher Les Plaisirs Nature Mûre Sauvage/Blackberry is a single note blackberry fragrance. It is fruity and juicy. The largest EDT , 3.3 oz, goes for $11. It’s nice to have around for late summer. L’Aromarine Mûre Musc Perfume Extract is a long wearing oil. It seems much more expensive than it is. It goes for about $10. A sweet and “young” blend of blackberry and vanilla (and light wearing) is Victoria’s Secret Pink Fruity & Bright  All-Over Body Mist. It retails for $15. To my surprise, I kind of like Bath and Body Works Midnight Pomegrante EDT. It’ a fruity blend including blackberries and cassis but it has musk and patchouli making it much richer and not as fruity. It goes for $26.50. They also have Black Raspberry & Vanilla EDT for the same price. This is a super sweet in a vanilla way, “berry” EDT. Sula Blackberry Blush EDP (not pictured) is a blackberry and vanilla blend with much needed florals. It’s simple and retails for $32 for 1 oz.

More Expensive Blackberry Scents: Mistral Wild Blackberry EDP is a fruity blackberry dessert type fragrance. It has zesty citrus notes and musk. The 1.7 oz goes for $50. Trish McVoy #9 EDP is sexy and heavy blackberry inspired scent with notes of vanilla and musk too. The 1.7 EDP goes for about $80. L’Artisan Parfumeur Mûre et Musc Extrême is a rich fruity blend. It is much more “sensual” than the cologne and I would love to try the pure extract. It goes for $115 for 1.7 ounce. The Cologne is very green and fresh with blackberry and almost medicinal. I like it just as well. It has a time and a place. The smallest size is $95. Parfums DelRae Bois de Paradis EDP is absolutely delicious. It is a late summer mix of blackberry and fig with smoky amber notes. It is heavenly. The 1.7 oz goes for $135. DKNY Delicious Night is a much more floral blackberry blend with freesia. The 1.7 oz goes for $55. Maitre Parfumeur et Gantier Eau de Gantier EDT (not pictured) is a crisp citrus berry blend. Not sweet but refreshing but very light wearing. The 3.4 oz. goes for $110.

Other Great Blackberry Products: Lush Blackberry Bath Bomb is a fun product that is heavy on that blackberry musk scent. It goes for $6. Ulta 3-in-1 Shower Smoothie Blackberry Blast is one of those faux super fruity blackberry scents. It is a fun product that retails for about $15. Naturally Victoria’s Secret Blackberry & Tonka Bean Restorative Scrub is a faintly blackberry scented scrub. It does a good job and retails for $18. D.L. & Co. Cassis Diffuser is an amazing scent of blackberry and fig. I love this scent because it does such a good job of seasonal transitioning. It retails for $95.

pineapplecollage

I am not a huge mega fan of fruity scents but I do like them. I  have a few favorites. Sometimes in summer I want to smell like a pineapple or a piña colada. It’s fun and makes me feel like I am on vacation. There are many pineapple inspired scents on the market ranging in price and even formulas from oils, solids, to sprays. If I had to pick my top 2 that you can still buy it’s Crazylibellule & The Poppies Shanghaïjava Ananas Imperial and L’Artisan Parfumeur Ananas Fizz. Here are some more:

Budget Pineapple Scents: Crazylibellue & The Poppies Shanghaïjava Ananas Imperial is a nice fruity blend that is heavy on the pineapple. It retails for about $16 and the cute little Crazystick goes everywhere you go. Lucy B. Australian Jasmine Perfume Roll-On is heavy on jasmine but the pineapple ads a nice tropical touch making this a a nice fruity-floral fragrance. Plus, it is a deal at $24 and the spray is $48. I actually prefer the roller ball. Harajuku Lovers Lil’Angel is one of those tropical fruit and citrus florals. It’s pretty sweet but it does have pineapple. The smallest bottle goes for $25. Have I mentioned that I love this lines bottles? Demeter Fragrances Pineapple is a “pure” pineapple, sweet and juicy. The 1 oz. goes for $20. The line also has a pretty decent Piña Colada for the same price. My all time favorite pineapple scent was one by Yves Rocher. It was dirt cheap, long-wearing, and well, perfect. It isn’t available anymore and I’ve had to replace it with the Ananas Imperial solid.

More Expensive Pineapple Scents: If you are looking for a sweet, tropical, and creamy pineapple fragrance, give Comptoir Sud Pacifique Vanille Pineapple a try. It is a blend of pineapple, vanilla, and coconut milk. It goes for about $53 and smells good enough to eat. Sometimes in the summer I just crave L’Artisan Parfumeur Ananas Fizz. It is fruity, sweet, citrus pineapple blend. It’s a very playful scent. The 3.4 oz bottle goes for $135. Safi Parfum Oil is a long wearing tropical fruit and floral blend with pineapple, freesia, and lilies. I know it isn’t for everyone, lychee and pineapple can smell a bit “pissy” but I really like this one, .28 oz. of oil goes for $60 and the 1.7 EDP spray for $78. Momoberry Perfume Oil is a nice tropical floral and yes, Hello Kitty is on the bottle. It is a blend of pineapple, jasmine, and coconut. It was created by the genius that came up with Monyette Paris, it’s a great tropical scent. It goes for $45 for .33 oz. I seriously think I could drink Hilde Soliani Sipario. It’s a true piña colado fragrance of rum, coconut, and pineapple. It goes for $175 and I can buy a few piña coladas for that.

Other Great Pineapple Products: 100% Pure Juicy Pineapple bath product line is just what the name implies: juicy. Jacqua Piña Colada Hand Creme isn’t as good as the real thing but you can get away using this at work. It retails for $8. mark Juice Gems Lip Gloss comes in Juicy Pineapple. It is a lovely 24K gold shimmer with a great flavor. It’s a deal at $6. Alba Botanica Enzyme Pineapple skincare line smells nice and is great for skin feeling “dull” or “ashy”. Prices in the line are under $15. My friends with fine, oily hair, total opposite of me, rave about Lush I Love Juicy Shampoo. It’s fruity with pineapple. I wish I could use it.

Recipe for this (pic below) pineapple shake from Sunset, a nice summer treat.