The Mainstream Monday: Sniffing a Popular Scent:

This scent created by Olivier Cresp back in 2003 is a woody floral based on jasmine growing in his grandmother’s garden in Grasse. The scent is made for the “free, real, and somewhat wild” woman. I think this is a pretty scent, especially if you like floral musk scents. However, I wouldn’t call this a “wild” scent at all. In fact, it’s pretty tame and “comforting”. It’s more grandmother’s garden than heady jasmine. It’s a very soft, feminine scent.

At first the scent is a pretty floral white musk. It wears closely to the skin. It’s warm. It smells lightly of pepper, a gentle spice against the vanilla-ish florals/heliotrope. The scent really attaches itself to the skin. I guess this is the “lifescent”. I assume this is a type of “skin musk”. The white heliotrope is very pretty in this blend. It adds a sweetness and a soft, delicate powdery element to this warm, white musk scent. After 10-15 minutes, I don’t notice the pepper or spice in the fragrance. I really just get that heliotrope against white musk that I keep talking about. The musk is not animalic at all. In fact it seems “natural” like ambrette seed. After a little more time, the scent smells like ambrette, skin “musk” and sweet floral powder and very faint jasmine. It is such a soft scent that reminds me of a lightweight cashmere sweater. It’s the kind of scent that you would only notice with a close embrace. The light, warm musk floral begins to wear over a soft Mysore sandalwood base. I love Mysore sandalwood. It adds such a soft “roundness” to scents. It completes this scent. Lacoste Pour Femme has a warm woods base that is very feminine. It reminds me of the dry down of many soft, popular, modern floral-woods fragrances on the market.

For a scent based on jasmine, I can barely notice it. Usually jasmine in perfume takes over and steals the show. The jasmine in this is very, very mild. It’s a wallflower in the mix. The real show stealers are the heliotrope, white musk, and Mysore sandalwood.

I really like this scent. It’s warm and comforting. It isn’t the most exciting or “wild” scent on the market, I can safely say that. I really think Lacoste bombed that marketing campaign. They should of went an entirely different direction. It actually smells very comforting and somehow like the skin of a very young infant! I find this is a very nurturing scent that is nice for everyday wear and is appropriate for professional spaces. For an EDP, it doesn’t wear very long. It’s a soft scent to begin with so one doesn’t notice it too much. I really don’t notice this scent on my skin after 3 hours of wear. This doesn’t bother me. It is a “soft” scent and I like to wear it on the days when I feel a bit “anti-perfume”. Yes, even I have those days.

Notes listed include: Jamaican pepper, purple freesia, white heliotrope, Iranian jasmine, hibiscus flower, Bulgarian rose, Himalyan cedarwood, velvet skin “lifescent”, incense and Mysore sandalwood.

Give this scent a try if you like soft, warm white musk scents or fragrances like the discontinued Clinique Simply EDP, Gucci Pour Femme EDP, Editions de Parfums L’Eau d’Hiver Splash, Emporio Armani She EDP, Victoria’s Secret Dream Angels Heavenly EDP, Donna Karan Cashmere Mist EDT, Philosophy Amazing Grace EDP, and/or the scent of Mysore Sandal Soap.

It is available at Lacoste’s fragrance website and drugstore.com. The larger bottle retails for about $50.


Lacoste Femme Perfume for Women Eau De Parfum Spray 3.0 Oz by Lacoste

From: BigDiscountFragrances.com

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La Maison de la Vanille is a French “vanilla” perfume house that really channels French colonialism, trying to make that aspect of history glamorous. They have a few different blends of vanilla. And with a name like “La Maison de la Vanille”, it’s pretty obvious that they are members of the cult of vanilla.  I’m not a vanilla fan but I am not a vanilla hater. I think vanilla has a time and a place and sometimes I really crave it during cool, wet, gloomy weather. I live in the PNW, so there are 9 months out of the year that I can potentially crave vanilla based scents.

Vanille Noir de Mexique is described as a “mysterious, dark, and seductive” vanilla fragrance. I don’t know if it is all of these things but it is a nice vanilla scent. This fragrance knows how to do vanilla without doing “cupcake” or cheap. Vanilla is sniffed throughout the entire wear of this EDT. Vanilla is always present. I love the top note and first 15-20 minutes wear of this scent. It is a rich and raw vanilla with a heavy dose of bergamot. This makes for an interesting vanilla fragrance. I imagine vanilla as round and smooth and bergamot as a bit rough. These two notes together compliment each other without being too complicated. And it isn’t “orange cream”. It’s bitter and sweet, not desserty. The mid notes are a bit “powdery” vanilla, like an updated and less complicated and “modern” Guerlain Shalimar EDP. It is powdery in an old-fashioned rose and iris way with lots and lots of vanilla making it “new”. The dry-down is “sexy”. It is pretty much just a generic tonka bean, patchouli, woods that is heavy on vanilla. It reminds me of many dry-downs of many mainstream fragrance. From start to finish, this is a vanilla heavy scent. I love to picture myself wearing this and wearing a cashmere sweater dress, sipping rich, dark Mexican hot cocoa in front of our fireplace in the dead of a snowy winter. It’s a comforting vanilla that is interesting enough to purchase.

The company and the packaging remind me so much of Comptoir Sud Pacifique but I like La Maison de la Vanille much better. Their blends smell more expensive and less foody. Many people complain that this scent isn’t long-lasting. It is an EDT, duh. But, I find that it wears on me all day, at least 12 hours. I think vanilla based scents have a tendency to “stick” on me. Perhaps I am freak, don’t comment. Notes listed include: vanilla, rose, jasmine, iris, tonka bean, and bergamot. I would say that you would like this if you love rich vanilla scents, Guerlain Shalimar EDP, Solange Stoned,  Montale Chypre Vanille, Parfums de Nicolai Vanille Tonka, Profumum Dulcis in Fundo, Creative Scentualizations Perfect Vanilla, and fragrance by Comptoir Sud Pacifique  and LaVanila.  It retails for $60 for 1.7 oz and is available on luckyscent.com.

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.

I love the packaging of Coty Airspun Loose Powder. It is the original packaging and I wish more companies would keep the same look. It gives this product such an adorable retro glamor. It is a cardboard “hatbox” with the cutest powder puffs all over it. The classic burnt orange means that the product has scent and the teal background means that it is fragrance free. Of course, I went for fragrance. The fragrance is a bit old fashioned and I can understand why people would want to go the fragrance free route. I just love the old fashioned scent that is a bit “powdery” and floral and all lady. The container is packed full of loose powder. I have it in a tinted beige shade. The powder will last for a long time. The powder mattifies and really does provide a perfect vintage look. A little of the powder goes a long way. I still like to look “dewey” so I brush on just a little and blot with tissue. It is a wonderful product and I will repurchase. I mean goes for like under $6, looks so cute on a dresser, and does its job. What more could I ask for?

If you don’t like this fragrance, please don’t judge me. Honesty is an amazing quality to have. I am just being honest. There is something that I really like about Avon Sweet Honesty EDT. It is pretty old-fashioned and really “fluffy”. It doesn’t have that edge and sultriness that I usually go for in a fragrance. This is soft, it’s pink, it’s innocent. Maybe that is why I like it. It is unlike most of my other fragrances. This is super soft, powdery. Clean in the 40 years ago sense of the word, it smells powdery but not 100% Johnson and Johnson. It is baby powder mixed with honey. It is kind of sweet but raw, like honey. The powder doesn’t linger around forever. It’s a bit citrusy, just a bit. Just a dash of lemon for a little tang. It is floral, fresh. I can’t make the floral notes out. Just generic girl flowers. It manages to be sweet the entire time, thanks to the honey a little vanilla for staying power. It is musky, in a “white” musk way. I really like this. It is easy to wear, I like the vintage vibe. It only wears for about 2 hours and it does wear faintly at the 2 hours. I feel like I have to bathe myself in it. It is a “cologne”, how retro is that? It only retails for $12 for 1.7 ounces. I love the perfumed skin softener. They really are meant to be together. Both items are married happily ever after. I see myself buying this again. I like this type of thing but I wouldn’t want to pay too much for it. This is fresh in a non-aquatic way. Thank goodness, it is honest unlike Love’s Baby Soft which you know is trying to cover something up. This is avaible on avon.com and of course, this classic is always on special. I think I got mine for $6 and you can’t beat that.