Parfums des Beaux Arts by DSH Gingembre is a perfect cool weather fragrance. I live in Washington, not just anywhere, around the Puguet Sound: Western Washington. We are known for our massive amounts of gloom and rain. For a closet goth and a mushroom hunter, this is paradise. I love the cooler, foggy,  seaside days. The rain is here just like clockwork starting on October 1st. It’s a bit chilly (50’s), cloudy, and rainy. If you’ve ever visited this area during the rainy season, then you know why we love our coffee. It is the only thing that warms you up and gives you energy during this season (even though many of us are into our tea). Today I am wearing Gingembre. It is my comforting travel mug of steaming dark roast and cashmere blended hoodie on this cool, rainy, classic PNW day.

Gingembre is spicy and comforting. If you love gingerbread or ginger snaps then you should love this. At first it feels and smells like the steam off of a masala coffee or chai. It’s spicy with nutmeg, allspice, anise, and clove. The ginger comes in, more of a dried powder, Indian market ginger. This scent then becomes my spice cabinet. You can smell the gourmand spices mixed with ginger powder. It has a bit of beeswax which adds so much to this fall/winter spice blend. It gets a little sweeter but not super sweet like a spice cake with cream cheese icing. This is more like a chai with a sugar or honey. If you pay close attention you can get a bit of a floral, like a honeyed, dried rose. It’s so beautiful. The great thing about the PNW is that this time of year you crave fall baked goods heavy with ginger and cloves, hot beverages, you smell the ground which is soaked, mossy, mushroomy. But, it isn’t “dying”. There are many evergreens and roses are late. We get roses up until November. It just delights me that this perfect fall/winter fragrance has rose. The dry down is delicious like a handsome man wearing a cologne heavy on patchouli and resins while sipping suavely on spiced rum in front of a blazing fireplace.

This one is a keeper for me. I thought my favorite ginger scent was Serge Lutens Five O’Clock au Gingembre, but  right now I love this one more. Five O’Clock is more of the aroma of a moist, baking gingerbread cookie ready to come out of the oven. This one is more of a crispy gingersnap and a cup of comforting chai. This being said, I think this is a nice unisex scent. It’s sexy on either a man or a woman.

I would say that you would like this if you are looking for a fall/winter ginger scent (not a tropical or fresh ginger), something  like Serge Lutens Five O’Clock au Gingembre , Jo Malone Nutmeg & Ginger Cologne, Laura Mercier Minuit Enchanté, L’Artisan Parfumeur Navegar, Armani Prive Ambre Soie, Perfumerie Generale Un Crime Exotique, Mark Buxton Sounds & Visions, and/or Bois 1920 Sushi Imperiale.

This fragrance is made from 94.5% botanical ingriedients. It’s long-wearing, very realistic and natural. The 1 oz. spray goes for $70 and other sizes are available. It is available on the fragrance house’s website.

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Parfums des Beaux Arts by DSH The Color Orange is a fragrance based on the color orange used in Rothko’s no.12. Appropriately it is heavy on citrus. Oranges are orange. At first spritz it is a juicy but rugged citrus. It smells like fresh, hand squeezed oranges. It’s a mix of the juice and the peel. It’s a bounty of mid-winter ripe citrus: juicy blood oranges, mandarins, and grapefruit. These are listed as the top notes and you can really smell them. Citrus crops are one of the few things that I enjoy about winter. Who doesn’t love the feel of a blood orange awakening the senses in the dead of winter? I can smell the lushness of blood oranges, the tartness of little mandarins, and the rugged sweetness of grapefruit. It is like an olfactory vitamin C bomb. It’s bold and refreshing, tart and only sweet in the way that a pink grapefruit or blood orange can be. Surprisingly, The Color Orange becomes “lighter” and flirtier. It has a whimsy blend of neroli/orange blossom. It’s still “citrus” but with a breeze of neroli/orange blossom. It becomes much more feminine, smooth, and less rugged. It’s just flirty, coy. It blends smooth like the oil paints used in a Rothko painting, seamless but with definition. I love the base. This flirty, coy citrus-floral turns in to a moody, Medieval animalic citrus pomander. The dry-down is spicy and rich with wintery myrrh, ambrette seed, and sensual musks. This isn’t a Christmas time craft project type pomander, heavy on cinnamon, stuffing an orange peel with cloves. This is how I imagine a Middle Ages pomander, animalic heavy on ambergris, rich resins, and orange rinds, all carried from distant, warm lands. Something to outweigh the less than perfect wintery weather of the land where you reside. This is a reminder of warmth, sunshine, and bountiful groves. Not the rain, cold, frost, snow, grayness of December.

I really like this fragrance for winter. It is refreshing, warm, and very much like the citrus in season. I would say that you would like this if you like “rugged” citrus, something “orange”, winter citrus blends, Diptyque L’eau de Tarocco, Keiko Mecheri Sanguine, Red Flower Organic Ambrette, Pacifica Tuscan Blood Orange, and/or Fresh Bergamot Citrus. Oh, or Bliss Blood Orange & White Pepper body cream. The fragrance wears for about 4 hours.

A few sizes of this EDP are available. A 1 oz spray goes for $65. It can be purchased at DSH Perfumes website.

Rothkos no.12

Rothko's no.12

This is a rich and comforting fragrance that reminds me of Santa’s cookies and winter baking. It is a sweet, gourmand fragrance but I still like it. It is a blend of nutmeg, almond, orange blossom, vanilla, tonka bean, and musk. At first it is a spicy floral. You can smell the light, playful aroma of orange blossom mixed with spicy nutmeg. The orange blossom is a flirt and doesn’t hang around very long but you can tell it’s there even when it is “gone”. You soon smell the rich nuttiness of almond. I love the scent of almond. Nothing beats a nice Italian almond fragranced soap. I can smell the almond and rich, sweet creamy vanilla with a touch of “cocoa”. The almond gets sweeter, like it has been toasted in brown sugar. It smells like a delicious dessert (great vanilla almond cake recipe here) and it makes me want a strong cup of black coffee.It is a sweet fragrance. This is not an understatement. It is sugar and spice. It is the kind of scent that is too heavy/sweet for year round wear but it is perfect for cooler weather and winter, especially Christmas time. Sometimes fragrances like this are just what you need when the frost settles in.  The dry down is a comforting blend of tonka bean, musk, and vanilla.

This scent reminds me of sitting in a charming and cozy café, reading a used paperback book, holding it with cold hands as it rains outside. You order a hot latte  or a macchiato to warm yourself up. You’re wearing your favorite scarf and kind of the enjoy the cold because it is one of the first really “cold” days of the season. You look out the window to glare at the drizzle, look back down to continue reading. You hear your name, look up and to your surprise, it’s an old friend. It’s just going to be a good day.

This is a long wearing fragrance and wears for many hours. I would say that you would like this scent if you like gourmand, sweet scents that are heavy on vanilla or toasted almond, scents like Malzzolari Alessandro, Carol’s Daughter Almond Cookie, Crazylibellule & The Poppies Poule de Luxe Vanilla Macarons, LaVanila Vanilla Spice, and/or Burberry Brit EDP. The 1.7 oz. EDP retails for $95. It is available at beautyhabit.com and sarahhorowitz.com.

The Mainstream Monday: Sniffing A Popular Fragrance

If you are a fan of vanilla, then you should love Hypnôse (please do not confuse with Lancôme’s original Hypnôse 1950, confusing, huh?). Hypnôse is an oriental fragrance heavy on 3 notes: passion flower, vetiver, and vanilla. That’s really all there is to it, maybe a dash of other “flowers”.  I am not a huge fan of vanilla but I don’t dislike vanilla either. I like vanilla when there is just a hint to round and balance things out. This is a “sexy” fragrance I suppose. I’ve had ladies tell me their man loves this one, my hubby could care less (he’s no vanilla lover either). It is a bit heavy. It’s a vanilla blend, slightly sweet, with romantic a touch of florals with crisp almost masculine edge of vetiver. ( I would say the vetiver is what makes this one bearable). It’s not very me (needs more “wood” or more vetiver), but I could see others really liking this one. Also, I think it could wear nicely on a man, especially if you are a guy that likes Fresh Cannabis Santal or Boucheron Jaïpur, just a thought. It is a long wearing fragrance and mainly wears of that “spiral” of vanilla, passion flower, and vetiver. If you get this on a scarf of something, it will smell like Hypnôse until you wash it. So you are getting your money’s worth 🙂  For a Lancôme scent it isn’t too bad (shame for a company that started as a fragrance house), but for a scent in this price range it isn’t the greatest. This is my opinion, like I’ve said, I am not a vanilla lover.

I would say that you would like this if you are a fan of vanilla based oriental fragrances, Guerlain L’Instant or Insolence, Chanel Coco Mademoiselle, Burberry Brit EDP, Dior Pure Poison, Juliette Has A Gun Lady Vengeance, Strange Invisible Perfumes Magazine Street and/or Fresh Cannabis Santal. Since this is a heavier scent, I would say that it would wear the best during cooler months/seasons. The bottle is based on the original. It is sturdy glass, spiral, “evocative of a woman’s silhouette, with facets that shimmer in the light”. It has violet colored juice. It’s a pretty bottle, it feels expensive because it is hefty.

It is available in 3 sizes from 1 ounce to 2.5 ounces with prices ranging from $45 to $72.50. Do pick it up with a GWP, I love those things. * Currently it is available at fragrancenet.com.

The Mainstream Monday: Sniffing A Popular Fragrance

Vera Wang Princess is one of those fragrances obviously marketed to a younger crowd. The closest it gets to senior is senior in high school. It doesn’t mean that you have to be a teen to like it, it is just obvious this is who the company was banking on. The fragrance is a sweet oriental blend and very different from the other Vera Wang fragrances. It’s pretty light and light wearing. Not overwhelming. It isn’t horrible but I just don’t like it. Of course, I’m older and I’m not wild about sweet fragrances; it’s a personal thing.

What really stands out to me the most in Princess is the dark chocolate note. When I wear this is this the overwhelming note. It isn’t bad, just not what I want. It wears like a teenage version of Mugler’s Angel. It’s chocolaty and woodsy with sweet powdery hints of vanilla and amber. Did I mention the hints of sugary frosting as well? I can tell that the fragrance contains everything including fruits and flowers but on me, I just get all the sweet notes. The bottom line is that this is a sweet fragrance. My sisters are teenagers and love this scent. They like it because it isn’t too fruity or floraly. And for them and their lack of exposure to other “grown-up” scents, they think this is heavy and sexy because of the wood and amber base. So the product is genius in that aspect. It’s a sexy and sophisticated scent in their eyes even though it isn’t heavy. So moms, don’t worry, you won’t be gagging when you are dropping your daughters and their friends off at the movie theater when you are stuck in the SVU with 4 teenage girls wearing this.

My verdict is that this scent is definitely not for me. I find it generic and boring, too sweet and foody. It smells like a chocolate cupcake with vanilla frosting was smeared on me while I was wearing a generic amber, woods, and musk based fragrance. I love the dry-down of the base notes after a few hours. It’s woodsy and amber-ish. It’s very pretty but I can get that from other scents without the sweetness. Since it is a sweet fragrance, I would recommend it for cooler weather wear. I don’t like this but I can see how others can. If you like sweet, gourmand oriental fragrances then you’ll most likely like this one. Sweet, gourmand orientals aren’t my favorite but they do have a time and a place and I know some people love them.

The bottle is really cute, the epitome of cute things. They should just put a pic of a fuzzy, white kitten on it and be done. Once again, this is what my sisters rave about. They love having it out on their dresser in their lilac painted room. The bottle feels heavy and sturdy. And I have to admit that even I think it is cute.

I would say you would like this if you are a teen, haha, if you like chocolate based or dessert sweet fragrances or if you like Carolina Herrera 212 Sexy, Aquolina Pink Sugar, Ralph Lauren Ralph Hot, Fresh Canabis Santal, Mugler Angel and/or mark Jewel. The 1 ounce goes for $45, 1.7 ounce for $57, 3.4 ounce for $72. There is a body butter, body polish, and bubble bath available. Sephora has a cute roll-on of this, the other end is a lip gloss. It makes a nice gift. *Currently available at fragrancenet.com.

Dont worry I found an ad with a fluffy white kitten! (Oh, and a hunk too).

Don't worry I found an ad with a fluffy white kitten! (Oh, and a hunky prince charming too!)


Vera Wang Princess Perfume for Women Eau De Toilette Spray 1.7 Oz by Vera Wang

From: BigDiscountFragrances.com

L’Aromarine Opopanaux is a very rich scent in a very rich medium. It is a long wearing perfume oil. It can be diluted into alcohol for a lighter scent or mixed into other things such as epsom salt as a bath salt. It wears all day, but after the first few hours very closely to the skin. It is a rich, resin scent. It is both powdery in an amber way or myrrh and almost citrusy at times, like a mix of lemongrass and lavender. So what I guess I am trying to say that it is almost pine-y and coniferous while being boldly sweet and ambery. So, yep, a resin or a balsam: opopanox. This is a scent that I like but rarely wear except for in the winter months when I wear amber and frankincense based fragrances. You can pull off heavier scents then.

I would guess that you would like this fragrance if you like warm and rich amber, opopanox, myrrh, and frankinsense based fragrances, smoky incense scents, headshop fragrance oils, “oriental” scents,  Demeter Incense, Annik Goutal Encens Flampoyant EDP, Serge Lutens Chergui or Ambre Sultan (Serge loves to put opopanox in stuff), Regina Harris Amber Vanilla, Donna Karan Cashmere Mist (if you watered the L’Aromarine down), and/or Guerlain Shalimar. This scent is nice alone or mixed. You can mix it with vanilla oil for a sweeter take or with a rose oil for an elegant oriental perfume blend. I would say that it could very easily be unisex and very nice on a man if mixed with a woodsy oil like cedar or patchouli. It retails for under $10 and can be purchased on beautyhabit.com.

Givenchy Amarige is a nice woodsy-floral (“oriental”) fragrance. It is warm and floral. It is one that I have had in my collection for quite sometime but I often overlook it for reasons unknown. I guess because it is a fragrance that I like, not that I love.

At first spritz, it is a heavy floral mix of gardenia, ylang-ylang,  and neroli. It manages to have a robust but somewhat “powdery” note. This gives the fragrance a subtle yet old-fashioned vibe despite its 1991 release date.  (Depends who you ask, many find this a “dated” fragrance). It “bubbles” with mimosa and faint citrus fruit and blossoms. There is a touch of stone fruit but very faint and I have to wear this many times and “think” about it to find it. This stage is brief, the fruity stage. It dries down to a thick gardenia fragrance but it is much warmer than the initial spritz. It has a bit more of a souring gardenia and tuberose vibe. It eventually turns into a gardenia with “woods” and a little more sweetness from something like vanilla and amber. It smells “exotic” and a little complicated. This isn’t a bad thing. Givenchy describes this fragrance as a fragrance “in love” and a play on “mariage”. At first,  it is flirty, soft, and delicate. It is happy and energetic. Then is becomes warm, sensuous, and seductive during its lifespan. It wears for many hours on me and I find it very hard to believe that it is an EDT and not an EDP!

The bottle is OK. It is sturdy with a disappointing plastic top. It is made to represent a blouse designed by Givenchy for Bettina Graziella which had a dramatic and sculptured neckline.

The 1 ounce retails for $47 and the 1.6 ounce for $62. There is a 3.3 ounce and I think it goes for $82. I would say, if you haven’t already tried this fragrance, that you may like it if you are the type that likes Jean Paul Gaultier EDP, Kenzo Flower, Dior Addict, and strangely Avon SSS Soft & Sensual body products line. This is also a great fragrance for the gardenia and tuberose lover. I really go for this one in the fall and winter because of its warm base notes. It is a great “winter” floral. I also find that it is too strong for me in the summer. Actually I should give a warning, this is a “strong” fragrance according to many noses, I mean I did compare it to Addict!


Amarige Perfume for Women Eau De Toilette Spray 1.7 Oz by Givenchy

From: BigDiscountFragrances.com