I love Lady Stetson for what is and what it isn't. What it is is an inexpensive, aldehydic woody floral that ended up smelling much better than the cheap, drugstore fragrance assumptions I had made about it before actually trying it. What is isnt, is one of those boring, interchangable fruity florals like the ones that are flying off the department store shelves at ten times the price. I found my full bottle in a thrift store at less than $5, so there was no reason to pass it up. I sprayed it on as soon as I left the store and let it play out on the ride home. I don't like aldehydes and that, and the the fact that it smells obviously synthetic in the beginning, renders the start a little rough for me. Many have compared this to the more expensive Chanel No. 22 and I can see some similarities, in the beginning, but as the aldehyeds in Lady Stetson quickly wear away, what emerges is something that's more warm, spicy woods laced with oakmoss, making it a nice winter comfort scent, where Chanel No. 22 remanis more sweet, aldehydic/floral and spring-like. I have a vintage bottle of Chanel No. 22 pure parfum and to tell you the truth, while the quality of the Chanel is obviously better, I prefer the warm accessability of Lady Stetson, to the prim and proper aloofness of Chanel No. 22.
A very nice drugstore scent. LS opens with a BIG poufy blast of soapy aldehydes and peachy amber. As it wears there is some spice in the drydown.
For me this works best in cold weather as aldehydes/peach/amber can feel a bit suffocating in Southern heat and high humidity.
I tried wearing about 10 sprays on my wrists,arms,neck,collarbones and chest and then decided to amp up the spice/incence with 1 spray of CDG Avignon to my wrist and then share it to the other wrist and pat my wrists to my neck.Then I repeated the Lady Stetson sprays .The result was very,very nice and I highly recomend it.
Looking at other reviews I really do wonder if we're all smelling the same scent. For me I find it has a brief burst of floral that's a bit soapy when first applied, it reminds me of bubble bath. It quickly fades and mellows to a warm creamy scent, a touch of musk and vanilla and the barest hint of spice. It would be very nice if it actually held up but I find it doesn't linger, after an hour I have to nearly put my nose to my skin to smell it.
Like a previous reviewer here, I bought a small bottle of Lady Stetson because it had been compared to Chanel No. 22 in "The Guide". Well I adore No. 22 (EDT), but this to me bears little resemblance. All I get is a very strong 'flypray note' that I have smelled in some other fragrances such as Givenchy Organza Harvest Edition and the current Rive Gauche. I know 'flyspray' is a very subjective descriptor and it's probably the case that I've been sensitised to a particular fragrance chemical previously encountered in the context of flyspray - but that's how it is for me! If you can relate to what I've said, avoid this fragrance. Otherwise, don't base your purchase on my opinion :-)
I finally decided to try Lady Stetson, my curiosity on its resemblance to No. 22 finally getting the better of me. Well, I lovelovelove 22 edt, but that's not what LS is akin to-- it's the pure parfum. They share the same very powdery aldehyde opening, and also some of the same white flowers-- maybe gardenia? Different is the sweetness in Lady Stetson's opening, which reminds me a little of the peach in Petite Cherie. I prefer 22 edt to the parfum because of the superfluity of liturgical incense, making it easily the most beautiful thing I have yet sniffed. LS doesn't have any incense and therefore lacks the depth of either 22 formula, but it is still elegant and quite pretty.
This is a beautiful fragrance and does not smell cheap in the least to me. It opens with slightly sharp, aldehydic spicy peach and dries down to eggnog: creamy vanilla, nutmeg and cinnamon. It is lovely and lifts my mood. It's a fantastic bargain for the price.