Reviews by Chinoiserie

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    Chinoiserie
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    Quel Amour! by Annick Goutal

    Quel Amour! A Love Story:

    Oh, how I love a fruity floral, but oh, how over-the-top they tend to be these days with a sweetness that's almost suffocating! Although fruity-floral is one of my favorite fragrance families (if not my absolute favorite), sometimes it's hard to find one that doesn't smell like an expensive counterpart to a Bath & Body Works fragrance or one that's appropriate for someone over the age of 25 (not that there's anything wrong with being 25).

    I also adore the scent of a rose, but every time I think I've found the perfect rose fragrance on paper, it leaves me flat, disappointed - deflated even - not to mention covered in a dry down that smells suspiciously like Playdough or a 70-year-old lady ( not that there's anything wrong with being 70) depending on how humid it is that night.

    Enter: Quel Amour! Where the heck has it been all my life? It's everything I want a fruity floral to be: slightly tart and almost - but not quite - sweet. It's both sensual AND sophisticated, and best of all, even as an EDT it seems to last forever on me.

    I kept waiting for the rose to turn into Playdough, and it never did; instead just mingling with the with the tartness of the berries with a very soft powdery veil. Quel Amour! is intimacy and candlelight and Brut champagne with berries bouncing in the bottom of the flute, and at the same time a sunny breeze on a June afternoon when the flowers and berries have just come into bloom and before the summer air has become a sticky, humid mess.

    I admit, although the flowery notes seem like rose to me, I actually have a sneaking suspicion that what I'm really smelling here is geranium, which is perhaps why it never got around to rapidly aging me into an old woman. I'd forgotten how much like roses geraniums are, but Quel Amour! reminded me.

    I am so excited about this fragrance that I've written it a love letter and then sprayed it with itself, and that letter goes a little something like this:

    Quel Amour!, mon amour, you deserve that exclamation point in your name that I admittedly thought was a little wacky at first! You are my new favorite smell and I love you. I love you because you are what fruity florals are supposed to be. I love you because you make me feel beautiful, even in my ugliest nightgown. I love you because when you show up, I can tell you're into me because you linger for awhile. But most of all, Quel Amour!, I love you because when your silky caress is on my skin, I still smell like a grown woman and not an active sorority sister ( not that there's anything wrong with active sorority sisters...sort of ).

    13th January, 2010 (Last Edited: 14th January, 2010)

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    Miss Dior Chérie (original) by Christian Dior

    This is currently my absolute favorite mainstream fragrance.

    I find it to be a beautifully joyful blend of sweet, ripened berries and soft, romantic flowers. I will admit, however, that I have a strong affinity for gourmand fragrances, and Miss Dior Cherie is very dangerously close to being one. There is just enough floral to pull it back from that edible edge, and the experience of that initial burst of summer strawberries drying down to a softer, flowery fruit experience is intoxicating & mood enhancing - not just for me, but for the many strangers that compliment me on it as well.

    Is it as adult and sophisticated as other Dior fragrances? Absolutely not, but that was clearly not the goal here. The strong berry notes are carefree summers and warm sunshine, they are memories of a youth spent in your best friend's backyard or the strawberry vines on your grandmothers fence - they are the "Miss" in "Miss Dior Cherie".

    I understand how and why it might be too sweet for many, but for me, she is a joy. I welcome her carefree innocence and I do not hold her youth against her even one, tiny bit.





    07th January, 2010 (Last Edited: 02nd March, 2010)

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    Hanae by Keiko Mecheri

    I'm rarely able to find a sweet smell like this that doesn't smell like it's made for a teenager, but Hanae pulls off the sweet, fruity notes with womanly panache. The white flower is like a soft mesh diffusing the sticky, saccharin qualities fruity florals with this many fruit notes often have, instead transforming the yuzu and berry notes into a very adult, very soft and very lasting glow. I would never describe this fragrance as sensual, but it is definitely flirty. This was the first Keiko Mecheri fragrance I tried, and I now think of it as my Mecheri gateway.

    07th January, 2010

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