This scent is supposed to be based on Egyptian musk. It may have been but I think I will continue to wear my no label Egyptian musk oils instead of this. It isn’t that I dislike this scent, there are just others that I like more. When I wear this fragrance, I feel like I am wearing someone’s signature scent, but not mine. I just don’t feel “comfortable” in this one. I have to admit that the first few times I wore this, I didn’t like it. After about the fifth wear, it started to grow on me.

First I must say, that this fragrance reminds me so much of Victoria’s Secret’s discontinued fragrance, Basic Instinct. If you are looking for a replacement for Basic Instinct, then buy this Narciso Rodriguez EDT. Based on the notes listed, I would think that I would like this fragrance. I usually like woodsy musk scents. I love animalic scents. I love heavy scents. I usually like Francis Kurkdjian’s creations (co-nose for this scent). For some reason this fragrance is not for me. At first it is a musky floral. I hate to say this but the musk comes across not so fabulous with “hissy” or astringent florals like orange blossom and osmanthus. Like most EDTs, this fades or settles. I’m then left with a “round” and robust musk-floral. It is sweet. I pick up a little bit of vanilla. This is needed to balance the fragrance. The top is still very musky and pretty.  The muskiness fades (a little bit) and the florals start to take center stage. I like this. The florals are so delicate and romantic. I do like orange blossom because it is such a flirty yet “grown-up” note. For a short while, this fragrance is playful. At this stage it hits me as a sexy night time “resort” type fragrance. The orange blossom and osmanthus add a lightness to a musky fragrance. The musk at this time is more “skin” musk; hence, it’s easy to wear in comparison to animalic, skanky musks. At this stage I do see where this could be based on Egyptian musk.  This stage lasts too little on me. I wish it wore throughout like this. It could be my summer Egyptian musk. The fragrance then becomes sweeter than before with amber and vanilla. I usually like amber and vanilla but for some reason I don’t like the sweetness in this fragrance. It makes this lightweight, “lingerie” type fragrance feel too heavy. It also makes it feel like it is trying too hard (the fragrance equivalent of rhinestoned thong underwear).  It feels too sweet and powdery but not in a good sweet and powdery way. It seems like walking through a cloud of vanilla talc. I taste it. For some reason the vanilla wears very heavily on my skin. It isn’t creamy or gourmand. It just smells like a waxy vanilla candle (on me but smells creamy on a blotter).The dry-down is very “dry”. It’s dried generic woods, dried vetiver, and musk. I like the dry-down. It’s unlike other popular “modern woods” thanks to the heavy hand of musk again. This fragrance has musk throughout the wear. Each of the musks are autonomous  and react differently to the different phases of the fragrance. I think I should give this fragrance a try in the fall or winter. I may wear it more then. Or maybe I should try the EDP since it has other notes listed that may round this fragrance out. I feel like this EDT is missing something but I just don’t know what. Fruit? Jammy roses? I think I may play around layering it with other fragrances.

OK, so this is a sexy musk scent that has chypre qualities. I do like those nouveau-chypres. It is not masculine despite the musk and woods. It is a very feminine fragrance. I don’t know why I don’t like wearing this one. I guess because it feels like it is lacking a certain something. I like certain aspects of this fragrance. I don’t hate the other aspects. I could have loved it but I don’t. Maybe it’s that I’m not craving this in June or it isn’t “skanky” or bold enough for me? I love to sniff it on a blotter but it doesn’t have as much “umph” when worn on my skin (one more reason to try the EDP). I don’t know what the problem is. For some reason it makes me feel bad that I don’t love this one.

I recently stumbled across a “skanky” discussion on Now Smell This. A reader commented and recommended this as a  starter skanky fragrance. I totally agree. This is a musk scent that is light enough to have a wide range of followers. Those that like musk could like this and those that usually steer clear of musks because they associate them with heavy animalic oils could like this too. Is it possible that this is a daytime skanky fragrance? Perhaps. It’s a feminine fragrance with sweetness and florals. There is nothing outrageous or offensive in this musk based scent.

Notes include: honey flower, solar musk, orange blossom, osmanthus, amberlyn, vanilla, tactile musk, tactile woods, and vetiver. Yes, I did not make a mistake. It says “tactile”. No visual or auditory musks or woods in this fragrance. You can feel them.

Give this a try if you like Victoria’s Secret Basic Instinct EDP, Parfum d’Empire Osmanthus Interdite EDP, Sarah Jessica Parker Lovely EDP, Kat Von D Sinner EDP, Jean Paul Gaultier Classique EDT, and/or Avon U by Ungaro EDP. Also, give it a try if you are looking for “starter skank”.

The 1.6 EDT retails for $65 and the 3.3 for $89. Many other items are available in this line including a hair mist and deodorant spray. It can be purchased at Sephora. It is sometimes available on “discount” sites such fragrancenet.com. There is a difference between the EDT and the EDP. I’ve reviewed the EDT and look forward to trying the EDP.

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.

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

Parfums des Beaux Arts by DSH Quinacridone Violet is in the Chroma Series, a collection inspired by artists and paint pigments. Quinacridone Violet is described as “Neon. Shocking. Fantastic”. It is a tart and energetic fragrance; hence, it isn’t very “me”, haha. Neither is the color quinacridone violet, a man-made fuchsia. Not very appropriate for a gloomy, closet goth. It’s a nice fragrance, just not a “me” fragrance. I think of it like a bold Pucci print. I find it pleasing but I am too self-conscious of bold prints and color that I can’t pull it off unless in very small doses such as a scarf.  Quinacridone Violet is a fruity-floral. The top-notes are extremely fruity and alcoholic. It kind of reminds me of a children’s cough syrup a.k.a Triamenic. It’s a citrusy-plum-apple combo. It does smell very “purple”. It is difficult to tear the top notes a part but you just get this juicy, fruity “purple” liquid from it all. It is very “young” to me. This top note mixture has a lot of energy and it reminds me of pulsating fluorescent lights (more raver than closet goth? haha). The fruitiness starts to mingle with florals. You get bitter, exotic florals and a bit of green/fresh violets mixed with an alcoholic fruit juice mixture. It is a very bitter floral mix. Not a flirty, feminine floral mix. It’s tart and fresh. I do like this part of the fragrance. It’s a bitter violet with flirty fresh sweet pea. After about 2.5 hours of wear you are introduced to the dry-down. The dry-down is gorgeous and very “me”. It’s a musky floral with soft florals and skin-like musks. Sometimes when I wear it, it reminds me of delicate flowers in a haze of resinous smoke. It’s a very long-wearing fragrance, like most of DSH’s.

Even though the fragrance is a bit too “outgoing” for myself, I can see how it can work for others. I do appreciate that this fragrance really fits its inspirational color. It’s intense, juicy, and bold. I say to give it a try if you want “plum”. I want a plum fragrance, but I want it to be more of a plum fuikake fragrance, plum with dried seaweed. I still haven’t found one of those. Ohhh, or a delicate plum blossom like those in our back yard.

Notes listed include: cherry blossom, lime peel, plum, quince, aglaia flower, Italian neroli, osmanthus, sweet pea, violet, violet leaf, atlas cedarwood, cassis bud, incense notes, and musk.

I say to give this one a try if you like fruity fragrances, Escada limited edition fragrances, Juicy Couture Couture EDP, Sarah Jessica Parker Covet Pure Bloom EDP, Bath and Body Works Sweet Pea or Cherry Blossom EDT, Lacoste Love of Pink EDT, Victoria’s Secret Sexy Little Things EDP, and/or Ralph Lauren Ralph EDT. I seriously think this would make a great replacement (a much more posh replacement) for Sarah Jessica Parker Covet Pure Bloom which is getting harder and harder to find. An 1 ounce EDP spray retails for $65. This size and other sizes are available on DSH’s website.

The Mainstream Monday: Sniffing A Popular Fragrance

Victoria’s Secret Very Sexy EDP is a floral oriental blend that tries very hard to be seductive. I think of it as a floral oriental for those that did not live through the 80’s to experience the heavy floral oriental genre. It is more of a “now” floriental. It’s a bit more fresh and floraly.

At first spritz, I kind of like this fragrance. I pick up a spicy mandarin. It’s refreshing and zesty. This energizing top note quickly fades. I do not smell the citrus after 5 minutes of wear. I then get something that I am not wild about. It is a powdery floral blend that is sweet and has a generic “vanilla musk” vibe. I take it that the powderiness comes from the “mimosa” listed but it doesn’t smell like the mimosa I love found in Guerlain Champs-Elysées or L’Artisan Parfumeur Mimosa Pour Moi EDT. It isn’t a light and fluffy mimosa. It’s a strong floral with a forced powderiness. The powder does go away or perhaps I can ignore it more. It then has a coolness and it almost reminds me of a rosey magnolia. I guess this is the camellia note. I haven’t had the chance to experience a “real” fragrant camellia. All of the ones that I have encountered were more about color and hardiness than aroma. Hydrangea is also listed as a fragrant note. My hydrangeas smell awful! Anyways, back to this fragrance. This strong, cool floral stage lasts and lasts. Imagine the green notes from a rose intensified. There is a faint vanilla like sweetness but still very floral. It is definitely more like a vanilla orchid than a vanilla bean. I do pick up lots of rose. It reminds me of a fragrance interpretation of somewhere floral and Southern, like the Garden District in New Orleans. The dry-down , is slightly woodsy. It manages to be a “clean” woodsy dry down. It is soft. If you like white musk then you should like this base. It’s woodsy but is is still very floral to its core. I know that this fragrance claims to be “sexy” but I’m just not getting it. I see it more of a nice, prim, and proper floral blend. I guess if your usual stand-by is something fruity like Ralph Lauren Ralph EDT or DKNY Be Delicious EDP, than this could be interpreted as a “sexy” and “seductive” fragrance.

Notes listed include: capucine, pepper, cactus flower, clementine, camellia, hydrangea, mimosa, vanilla orchid, musk, soft woods, blackberry, and white amber.

This isn’t a bad fragrance, it just isn’t something that I would see myself wearing very frequently. A teeny tiny bottle is more than enough for me. I love florals but I find that I am more of a fan of white floral blends. This is more of a cool and watery floral with a sweet dry-down. I’m just not a fan of humid florals. They don’t wear nicely on me but I can appreciate them from a distance. I would say to give this one a try if you like Bath and Body Works Enchanted Orchid EDT, Love & Toast Pomme Poivre EDP, Harajuku Lovers Love EDT, Estee Lauder Dazzling Silver EDP, Antica Farmacista Magnolia, Orchid, and Mimosa EDP, Tokyomilk Parfum Gin & Rosewater EDP, and/or Voluspa Victoria Collection Vanity EDP.

Three sizes are available and the largest, 3.4 oz., retails for $59. It is available at Victoria’s Secret.


Very Sexy Perfume for Women Eau De Parfum Spray 3.4 Oz by Victoria’s Secret

From: BigDiscountFragrances.com

Mainstream Monday: Sniffing A Popular Fragrance

Victoria’s Secret Supermodel is a light-wearing fruity-floral fragrance. It isn’t something that I would wear. I find that it lacks a “wow” factor. But, it isn’t a bad fragrance. It’s pleasant enough although generic.

Of course, Victoria’s Secret hypes this fragrance up as super sexy. I don’t really see that. I sniff it and the word “sexy” doesn’t come to mind. I think more “casual”. This fragrance was a “partnership” with the cosmetic’s side of Victoria’s Secret and their sexy runway models, whatever that means. At first spritz this is a very berry fragrance. It isn’t a berry that I can recognize and I need to remind you that I live in the Pacific Northwest. I know the smell of many, many berries and their many stages of ripeness. This just smells like “berries”. It’s jammy. Something is musky and warm beside the berries. This is a “warm” fragrance. At times I get confused, thinking it is cedary. It reminds me of a Roberto Cavalli Fragrance, Oro, I think, that is discontinued. The maker doesn’t recognize this scent as being cedary but I can smell it there. After the mûre et musc variation fades, there is a tartness. It’s fruity and tart but not citrusy. It’s a berry tartness. This mixes into a creaminess that reminds me of a more grown-up version of Fruity Pebbles and milk. I think this is supposed to be peach blossom. It is more of a peaches n’ cream mixture than a floral peach blossom. This does dry down into a warm, creamy sandalwood base. It isn’t the most exciting sandalwood I have ever worn but it does work nicely with those berry top notes. The sandalwood dry-down is very comforting. It is a “generic” sandalwood but I like it because it wears so cozy close to the skin.  This isn’t a scent that I will go out and buy. I have a few things like it because I like blackberry/musk scents and I like L’Artisan Parfumeur better than this. Supermodel does manage to smell “clean”. This isn’t a bad fragrance especially coming from Victoria’s Secret. It isn’t offensive, but oh, that bottle. I am not a fan of the bottle. I find it very tacky.

I’m surprised that it is an EDP. I find that it fades quickly. I thought it was an EDT because it lasts less than 2 hours on me. Maybe my skin likes to devour Chinese berries, peach blossoms, and creamy sandalwood.

It comes in 2 sizes ranging in price from $39-$49. I would say that you would like this one if you like Bath and Body Works Black Raspberry Vanilla EDT, Trish McVoy#9 Blackberry & Vanilla Musk EDP, Philosophy Falling In Love EDT, L’Artisan Parfumeur Mure et Musc EDT, DKNY Juicy Berry Candy Apple EDP, Vera Wang Glam Princess EDT, La Prairie Silver Rain EDP, and/or Kenzo Amour Indian Holi EDP.


Weekly Cheap Secret:

I love a multi-purpose product. And I love a multi-purpose product that retails for under $2. Africa’s Best Ultimate Herbal Oil is a must have for me. It is a super rich blend of oils and herbs multi-purpose oil. I use it as a cuticle oil, a hot oil hair treatment, and I just use it as a body moisturizer. It is great to have around in the winter when my skin gets ashy and itchy. It’s an oil so yep, it’s greasy. I love oils. Nothing makes my skin feel better. And the oil medium makes me feel like a goddess anointing my body.

It has a slightly powdery fragrance that reminds me a bit of Egyptian musk or a headshop musk oil blend. The scent doesn’t bother me but I could see it bothering others. It blends nicely with the musk oils that I own, ranging from no-name oil blends that I purchased from some Ethiopians at market and Tom Ford Private Collection Musks. It has that classic “African” hair oil aroma. I personally love that. It’s nostalgic.

Oh, yeah. I do use this an occasional hot oil treatment for my hair by applying a bit to a microwave safe dish and microwaving and the applying to my hair and rinsing it out. And I use it for those beachy, tousled waves. I add about 1/10 of this oil to a spray bottle filled with water. I shake it and spray onto damp hair. I either braid it or do a pin-curl variation and let it air-dry. I then get the perfect beachy waves.

An 8 oz. plastic bottle goes for $1.99 and it can be bought at Walgreen’s. And since it is an oil, a little bit goes a long way so this is an incredible deal. I seriously can’t get over the price and what is in this stuff. Ingredients include: walnut seed oil, sweet almond oil, sesame seed oil, olive oil, carrot seed oil, gingsing, comfrey and tons of other natural ingredients. This stuff would retail for like $50 if Aveda marketed it.