I really like Annick Goutal Heure Exquise EDT. It’s old-fashioned, feminine, and mysterious without being cloying and heavy. I must add that I love iris/orris scents. They are fresh and green. Often iris based scents are masculine (a reminder of antique after shaves), not Heure Exquise. It’s a seductive fragrance with class. The iris in Heure Exquise is not as green and medicinal as some iris heavy scents. It is more powdery and feminine. It really is what Annick Goutal was going for, an “exquisite hour”. It is dusk hovering over a well manicured garden with classic blossoms of iris and rose. It’s a “darker” iris, an iris for evening.

At first the fragrance is green in a classic iris way. It’s fresh but in a dry, earthy way. It becomes sweet yet green, thanks to the Turkish rose. The fragrance smells of an old-fashioned and symmetrical Victorian garden. It’s proper but soft and grounded. It’s beautiful. (I’ve already let it out that I love iris scents). This iris heavy scent is made feminine by sweet roses. The rose gives this earthy floral fragrance a bit of honey sweetness. The fragrance smells powdery. Since this is an EDT, it does change rapidly. The mid is beautiful. You still get an old-fashioned iris that is powdery but it is almost like  incense. The Mysore sandalwood makes a presence, mingling with the dry florals. It is so soft but not delicate. It is really like the sun is setting over this proper garden. It has a bit of mystery, a bit of haze. The dry down is rich and incensey. I get lots of Mysore sandalwood, one of my favorite notes ever. It is made feminine by a light touch of vanilla. The dry down is sweet but not in a gourmand way. It is sweet like resin.

I really like the fragrance, but I like old-timey scents. This one is old-fashioned but since it is a light-wearing EDT, it is very wearable. It isn’t heavy. The top is refreshing like going on stroll through a flower garden. The sun begins to set and this fragrance becomes very mysterious. Shadows change the scenery. Even though you’ve seen it all before, it becomes new with the darkness, mysterious, but still harmless. This is an understated sexy scent. I think it is trying to be sexy but it manages to do so tastefully.

For an Annick Goutal EDT, I find that it wears longer than most. It wears for about 4-5 hours on me during “average” temps.

Notes listed include Floretine iris, Turkish rose, Mysore sandalwood, and vanilla.

Give this fragrance a try if you like fresh, powdery scents, Editions de Parfums Iris Poudre EDP, L’Artisan Parfumeur Drôle de Rose , Jean Paul Gaultier Classique EDT, YSL Paris EDT, Victoria’s Secret So In Love EDP, and/or Lubin Nuit de Longchamp EDP.

The 3.4 fl.oz. retails for $115. It is available at luckyscent.com. * Currently it is available at fragrancenet.com at a discount price!

Claude Monet's Iris

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The Mainstream Monday: Sniffing A Popular Fragrance

Dolce & Gabbana “Classic” EDT, the one in the red, is one of my favorite department store fragrances. I am not the kind of person that can go to Macy’s and find many fragrances that I like. However, this is one that many department stores carry and I love. It is warming, intoxicating, and it smells very “expensive”. This oriental fragrance wears very resiny and soft on me. It has a blast of citrus and refined flowers, but it smells woodsy and powdery. In my mind, it is what a fancy Italian women’s perfume should smell like.

At first I can pick up on the citrus but it is a perfumey citrus oil. I get rich neroli/orange blossom mixed with “classic” florals such as carnation and jasmine. The first few minutes are very neroli heavy. I know this fragrance hasn’t been around as long as other fragrances, but it really has a classic Italian perfume vibe. This is like a “going out on the town” fragrance, a seduction fragrance. It is very Anita Ekberg to me and makes me think of her in dream woman status in La Dolce Vita. The citrusy florals mix in to a powdery perfume blend. There is that spice from carnation mixed citrus blossoms. It becomes resiny, feminine, powdery, and sexy. It manages to be all of this while still smelling clean and fresh. I guess I have an old-school image of  the “clean” fragrance, less aquatic and soapy and much more powdery. The dry-down is a pretty blend of carnation, powdery amber, and soft vanilla. This is a fragrance that I like to wear in the fall because I like its warmth but I also like how it has a certain crispness thanks to the citrus and clove-like carnation. Somehow I can manage to wear this one in late summer, a little bit goes a long way.

Notes listed include tangerine, orange flower, red carnation, and vanilla. For an EDT, this fragrance wears for many hours on me, longer than many things labeled “EDP”.

I recommend this fragrance for those that like a warm oriental fragrance, YSL Opium EDT, Miller Harris Fluer Oriental EDT, Guerlain Les Parisiennes Derby EDP, Guerlain Sous Le Vent EDP, Estee Lauder Spellbound EDP, Parfums des Beaux Arts by DSH Parfum de Grasse EDP, Saffron James Punono EDP, Cartier Baiser du Dragon EDP, Serge Lutens Datura Noir EDP, Crazylilbellue & The Poppies Shanghaijava Collection Encens Mystic Solid Perfume and/or Avon Timeless Cologne. It comes in a few sizes and retails for about $64-$80.



Dolce & Gabbana Perfume for Women Eau De Toilette Spray 1.7 Oz by Dolce & Gabbana

From: BigDiscountFragrances.com

The Mainstream Monday: Sniffing A Popular Fragrance

Victoria’s Secret claims this is America’s #1 fragrance. I don’t know if this is true (I think they are including the entire Angels family) or not but I can imagine that it is really popular. I’m sure its sales are huge. Not because it is the most amazing fragrance in the world but because it is carried by Victoria’s Secret and if I like it or not, their stuff is really popular. It’s available at every mall in America. Dream Angels Heavenly is a very soft powdery oriental fragrance. It isn’t offensive and it smells very “ladylike”.

I hate to admit this but I don’t hate Heavenly. I like it in the way that I like Philosophy Amazing Grace, another very popular fragrance. Sometimes I just like a soft “powdery” musky fragrance. This is one of those. It smells feminine with a slight hint of cardamom, one of my olfactory weaknesses, and florals. There have been times when my backyard reminded me of this scent because we have freesia and peonies. This scent claims to have these two notes and I believe it. I can identify them in this blend. But, mainly what really stands out, the cardamom and florals are there but not the show stealers, is the “clean” white musk smell and the slight warm sweetness of vanilla. This comes across as a powdery fresh scent, I guess because of the huge amounts of white musk. This isn’t a mind-blowing fragrance in my opinion and there are other things like it, but I must say it that it isn’t bad. In fact, sometimes I want to smell like this. I will probably give in a buy a small bottle… It smells soft and feminine and it reminds me of wearing a silky-smooth cami with a cashmere soft cardigan. So it’s like cardamom clean musk at first, then spring garden and clean musk, then like clean musk + vanilla. This is how it wears on me. It’s simple enough, light, and fit for a lady. This is not “skanky”, overwhelming, or “young” like most of the company’s other scents. Good for them.

I find that this EDP wears very faintly, intimately, and close to the skin. It never seems overwhelming (unlike other VS scents). It lasts for a few hours. I can barely notice that I am wearing it after 2 hours. But, maybe I get used to it since it is a “generic” scent. Or maybe it doesn’t wear very long. I mean seriously, if this claims to be one of the U.S.’s #1 scents, shouldn’t I be smelling it on more people? And it is available in a 4.2 ounce bottle, they are expecting for us to be spraying this stuff throughout the day or bathing in it. The 4.2 ounce goes for $59, 2.5 ounce $49, and 1 ounce $39. Key to success? Get your product in every mall in the country and have a low price point. It works.

I would say you may like this if you like Philosphy Amazing Grace, Donna Karan Cashmere Mist, The Body Shop White Musk, GAP Velvet Bloom, Harajuku Lovers Baby, Nasomatto China White, Coty White Musk, maybe even Annick Goutal Vanilla Exquise.


Dream Angels Heavenly Perfume for Women Eau De Parfum Spray 4.2 Oz by Victoria’s Secret

From: BigDiscountFragrances.com

This fragrance was difficult for Guerlain. It didn’t attract the “typical” Guerlain customer, you know the person that swears by Jicky or Eau du Coq, and it didn’t attract the mainstream consumer (the person that purchases every new release at Macy’s) because it is just too “odd” for their tastes. I am in the middle ground consumer. I love all Guerlain fragrances. I wear Jicky, but I also wear fragrances like Benefit Maybe Baby.

This fragrance is like a “young old lady fragrance” if that makes any sense. (I hate describing fragrance by age groups, its just wrong just like putting age equivalents on standardized tests). It is a super powdery fragrance. It’s kind of sweet like a dusting powder but it is very powdery from orris root and something that resembles candied violets (my ultimate weakness). It has a sweet rose, like a rose lozenge or pastille. Sweet, but only foody if you are a floral food fan like myself. It’s musky and clean while being powdery and floral.Guerlain’s website states that “olfactory pyramid has been ‘deconstructed’ to reveal three faucets of INSOLENT femininity that suits everyone’s taste and mood…sparkling violets, glints of red berries, and rays of iris.” Well, maybe not suited for everyone’s taste and mood, but definitely my own. Some of my favorite memories included last summer, my 1st summer in the Northwest. I would pick berries with a Choward’s violet candy in my mouth and I wore a cheap no label Italian iris/orris root EDT in the late days of summer. It was nice, happy times. So Insolence has nailed what I’m looking for. It is much more feminine than me sweating and ignoring bloody berry scratches. This is so feminine, soft, powdery. It is an “olfactory spiral”, this is just a gimmick that means that top note, middle, and base are all together and it pretty much stays the same throughout the wear. This is somewhat true. It smells much like initial spritz even a few hours down the road. I mean it is a little different but the idea is still the same. It isn’t like violet, berries, and musk. It is more all of these things in a blender once the alcoholic top note dries down. It is a sweet fragrance with candied violet, rose, vanilla, sandalwood but note overly sweet like cotton candy fragrances. It does appear fruity, but for some reason this just doesn’t linger with me (slightly like a red currant).  It is just sweet but not too sweet to wear for summer. I find that I wear this throughout the year.

I like Insolence much better than L’Instant which I find too vanilla-y and overwhelming. It is “young”, I guess but I found that many people under 30 are completely turned off by this fragrance that many ladies over 30 find this too “young”. I was working the launch of this fragrance and you wouldn’t believe how many people were offended by this one. I just didn’t get it but I am sure many of them would find Shalimar offensive and SJP Lovely not. I don’t find this one offensive at all, if anything it is too tame and pretty. Also, the use of Hilary Swank as the “face” of the fragrance was a bad idea. You don’t realize that the public is so sensitive to that kind of stuff until you see it in action. Many people do not find her glamorous (or attractive really!); people really do use her name and “horse face” together alot. Anyways…

It wears for many hours, extremely well for an EDT. I smell it on my jackets and scarves days after wear. My husband loves this one. It just smells “girly” so I am sure it will attract the opposite sex. My husband always says that he hates vanilla in fragrance because it smells “cheap” but he seems to like it in this. It adds a sweetness and softness to the floral notes. It also helps the violet stick around (I still haven’t found a violet fragrance that loves to be with me!)

The bottle is OK. It’s a bit chunky and the plastic top is a bit oversized. The 1 ounce bottle goes for $55. It is getting harder and harder to find! Please don’t tell me that it is being discontinued like I predicted it would be since it’s launch. I still have a 3.4 ounce bottle left and maybe I need to get my hands on another.

L’Artisan Parfumeur Mimosa is a beautiful light and feminine fragrance that is perfect for flirty spring days and hot summer nights. L’Artisan Parfumeur describes the scent:

A reminder of weekends spent at the Riviera, the perfume carries you away to the elegant shores of Cote d’Azur…Imagine the blossoming trees, the cool sea breeze, the elegant and leisurely way of life – bottled in Mimosa Pour Moi! The true mimosa soliflore, the fragrance embodies this heavenly aroma: from the flowers to the leaves to the stems. Fresh and softly-green, the scent is forever changing on the skin, every second revealing a new, silky-smooth aspect. Radiant and happy, Mimosa Pour Moi is eternal spring

Well, I have never spent weekends at the Riviera but I have lots of experience with beautiful pink mimosa trees. My pa is a bit of a gardener and loved these trees even though most individuals find them to be a nuisance. They grow so quickly and suffocate most other growth, but they are so beautiful and special. The tree added a much needed exotic flair to our Southern lives. I mean what other tree can you touch and it responds. My cousins and I spent summers climbing in those things and picking the flowers. The scent of the flowers was so light but I remember them. L’Artisan Parfumeur has managed to once again to “imagine” a scent the way I want to remember it. The initial spritz is green and fresh, resembling the leaves on the mimosa. It is crisp like violet leaves and “green”. It becomes a little fruity but not syrupy or overly sweet like most fruity fragrances on the market. It has blackcurrant buds which add a sweet tartness. I love the dry down of this fragrance. It becomes soft and “fluffy” and smells like the visual appeal of a mimosa flower. It is “fuzzy”, soft and oh so femme. It is powdery in the most sophisticated of ways. It is light and still green but posh and classy. It has a hint of “candied” violets, musk, super subtle and not so sweet vanilla. I feel a hint of violet root and warm wood. However, it is far from heavy and is just as lightweight and airy as a mimosa blossom. It is a very well composed flirty and feminine scent. I’d love to add this to my fragrance collection since I really have nothing like it. It brings back memories. I see myself as a young barefoot girl climbing mimosa trees in the humid summer, I’d even read books in the trees. I see it fresh, innocent and child like just like the initial spritz of this fragrance. However, this fragrance evolves and grows up and becomes complicated just like the barefoot little girl. It is a pleasant scent that I appreciate. I may not be as sophisticated as the final dry down of this fragrance, but I can still get there with some time.

It retails for $95 for the 50 ml, $135 for the 100 ml, the small candle is $20 and the large candle is $50. They can be purchased at barneys.com or L’Artisan’s Parfumeur’s website.

I bought this on a whim because I like the packaging and was making an online order and this stuff was only $1.99. I ended up really liking the fragrance of this perfumed body lotion. It is hard to describe since it is a lotion but it has a really soft, innocent powdery rose scent with a hint of something earthy like oakmoss. In fact it wore perfectly with my L’Aromarine Mousse de Chêne fragrance oil. It also wears nicely with single note rose fragrances and I’m sure it wears nicely with Sweet Honesty.The scent isn’t offensive and smells clean and girly.

It has a thicker texture but not creamy like a body butter. It is moisturizing and needs to be rubbed in thoroughly. The packaging is cute and has been the same for a while which I love. I actually left it out and about and not hidden in the linen closet. But, what is so awesome about it is the price. Most of the time you can buy it on special for $1.99 or even 99¢. It retails for $5.25 which is still a pretty good price. It is a little small and lasted only a few weeks for me with daily use. But, at least I used it. I’d love to purchase another one in the future.