Reviews by blood-orange

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    Cabotine Rose by Grès

    Sometimes I can be a bit of a perfume snob, but in regards to Cabotine Rose, ignore the price tag as it is no reflection on the quality and the smell itself.

    Cabotine Rose is an extremely pleasant fruity rose with soapy nuances. It's cheerful, girly and quite delicious.

    Black currant and pear really tickles the nose in the opening, followed by a fresh, pink rose bud, peony, soapy florals and a dash of pepper to add some character.

    This fragrance makes me think of babies, pink doll's houses and kid's shampoos for some reason. I think this is partly because my mother used to wash my hair with an Avon rose-scented baby shampoo when I was younger. I think I later washed my doll's hair with this same shampoo, so all my toys smelt of fruity and clean roses.

    The lasting strength of Cabotine Rose is quite impressive, lingering softly on the skin for hours. I highly recommend this fragrance if you're looking for something crisp, rosey and polite.

    09th April, 2012


    Ricci Ricci by Nina Ricci

    Rhubarb and rose can be beautiful when blended together and fine examples of this can be found in Tocca's Brigitte and Burberry's Brit Red. Unfortunately in Ricci Ricci the sugary and jammy berry-like notes makes this fragrance more of a teen fruity floral rather than an exotically sensual spiced floral.

    It's perhaps not as sweet as the previous Nina, with Ricci Ricci being much darker and richer, and minus the apple note. I get an odd berry-flavoured bubblegum scent in the opening which rounds out to jam, then an earthy fruity and patchouli blend.

    Apparently this fragrance is sexy, and I guess in some ways you could call it that. I know I won't be wearing this around my man anytime soon, but I'm sure young girls all over the world are loving this stuff right now.

    Surprisingly I do not smell the tuberose or the rose note whatsoever, yet I do believe the rose may feature alongside the rhubarb and the jam note creating a tart-like finish in the heart.

    The scent is dark, but not nearly as gothic and raunchy as the advertisement seems to suggest. I still think this is an appropriate scent for young girls, although on my 20 year old skin it felt incredibly wrong, with my friend commenting that I smelt like a jam factory.

    Such a shame that I couldn't like this fragrance. The lasting power and the cute bottle made it good, but just not good enough.

    09th April, 2012


    Lady Million by Paco Rabanne

    I have never, I repeat, never tried 1 Million by Paco Rabanne. I had no preconceived notion of what Lady Million was supposed to smell like, and for that reason alone I am neither disappointed nor moved by this particular fragrance.

    Lady Million is average yet pleasant. It's sweet but nicely so, like a honey scented shampoo rather than anything particularly sugary.

    It's not really a fruity floral, although the clean-like notes of lemon and raspberry are quite dominant. It's very honeyed, syrupy almost, but not a gourmand.

    Lady Million has stirred up many mixed feelings in me. While there are moments when I think it's a plain yet elegant scent, there are times when I find it a little cheap and uninspiring. I feel it's designed to attract young women in their 20's.

    All in all, it's a mixture of high-end shampoo, drizzly honey and a subtle hint of dirty, earthy patchouli. Odd, but a sure crowd pleaser. I wouldn't be shocked to see this fragrance flying off the shelves this Christmas.

    The lasting power is so-so and let's just say that the bottle design makes this a rather difficult object to hold in the palm of your hand let alone spray in a hurry.

    09th April, 2012


    Blue by Ralph Lauren

    Ralph Lauren Blue is a very appealing fragrance, such a shame it is now discontinued.

    It's a cross between a floral aquatic and a floral woody musk. Ralph Lauren Blue tends to be fresh yet smooth and feminine. It's subtle, but the subtlety works.

    I particularly like its creamy warmth, somewhat like a mug of warm milk. It has a certain cuddly quality that adds a spin to it's fresh sporty-ness. While it definitely suits hot weather, I think it could wear well in Winter too.

    The lightness of this fragrance is possibly the reason for its downfall. The floral aspect probably didn't help either. It's not tangy or fruity like most Summer scents, instead it goes for a light, transparent floral combination.

    Unfortunately the lasting power isn't all that great, and as I mentioned before, the sillage is incredibly soft. To be honest, I'm a little underwhelmed after trying Ralph Lauren Blue because I really built it up to be something wonderful after reading so many rave reviews.

    Ralph Lauren Blue is nice, polite even, and in some ways quite comforting.

    09th April, 2012


    Fleur de Corail / Coral Flower by Lolita Lempicka

    Initially I thought that Coral Flower was a less salty, more powdery vanilla than L de Lolita Lempicka. However, the more I smell this fragrance, the less convinced am I that it's vanilla that I'm smelling. Occasionally it smells like coconut milk and frangipani blooms.

    It's quite tropical and beachy, possibly the most Summer appropriate scent from the house of Lolita Lempicka. The opening is lovely, a deliciously exotic blend of sugary lemon, vanilla orchid and frangipani.

    In the heart the tropical aspect becomes stronger and more apparent, perhaps a little too synthetic at times as it did make me cringe. But give it some time, and eventually it smooths out into a powdery and delicate vanilla and coconut blend.

    It has a somewhat calamine lotion type smell, which reminds me of Guerlain's Shalimar. This is further highlighted by the rich ambery-ness in the base.

    Coral Flower is very likable. Even my mother who detests sweet scents often loved by the younger consumers, adored this. It's a nice change from those fruity florals and citrus aromatics which are often suggested for Summer.

    09th April, 2012


    UR for Women by Usher

    After testing Usher She and almost screaming with the horror of it all, my brain told me to proceed with caution when it came to testing UR. Well thankfully, I had nothing to fear.

    It's sweet and girly, like something you would expect from a celebrity scent, especially from a popstar. UR smells like candied peach, honeysuckle, milky jasmine and musk.

    Fortunately the sweetness isn't nauseating, actually the fruity notes have been balanced nicely with the floral accords. The scent is almost fresh, like something that would wear well in Spring and Summer.

    I agree with pimentosugars that it has a very jam-like quality. It reminds me a little of Showtime by Kylie Minogue, just perhaps not as sugary. It's not terribly unique, but I wouldn't have expected anything else. We are attempting to appeal to the teen market afterall.

    I actually don't find this offensive, which could possibly be due to its rather clean, shampoo-like quality. Some people could easily mistake this for a hair product or a body scrub, it doesn't have an overly 'perfumey' feel to it.

    All in all, I think it's nice. If all high school girls smelt like this I don't think I'd have a problem with it.

    09th April, 2012


    Volupté by Oscar de la Renta

    This fragrance gets quite a bit of love on the Fragrantica forums. Volupte, while floral, is quite bold and ambery, a scent that will either charm you or revolt you.

    It starts off okay, with a strong yet feminine floral opening, with a hint of sweet melon. As it settles it becomes sweeter and in some ways, harsher.

    The complexity is pleasing, however I must admit that I found this fragrance too heavy on the sweet accords and the floral notes, especially in the heart. It's rich, thick aroma is one that will appeal to those with an acquired taste. I just didn't have the taste for this one.

    The sillage and longevity are commendable, and before this begins to sound like a negative review, I do find this fragrance very unique and interesting.

    It wasn't so strong that I felt like I was choking, yet it was one that made me feel a little dizzy every now and then, and I really applied lightly. The drydown was lovely however, a beautiful, powdery amber and incense blend with just a subtle hint of what had been featured before.

    09th April, 2012


    Givenchy Gentleman by Givenchy

    A woman can certainly pull this fragrance off. I wear it, and I wear it proudly.

    Givenchy Gentleman is all about soft woods, cinnamon incense, earthy patchouli and sweet musk. To my nose, as strange as it may sound, this smells like an old-fashioned closet full of musty clothes and pink candy musk sticks.

    My god this is heavenly. To be honest, I love it so much on myself that it'd be hard for me to smell it on my man. He's used to my masculine and smokey scents, yet the other day when I sprayed this on my neck he had no clue it was marketed for men. Bless his heart, he actually mistook it for Chanel No.5 Eau Premiere.

    Towards the drydown Givenchy Gentleman becomes quite powdery and tends to resemble the scent of shaving foam. I've actually resorted to shaving my legs with men's shaving foam seeming that it's a whole five dollars cheaper than feminine shaving foam, so I'm used to my body smelling like this.

    It makes me feel so refined yet powerful at the same time. This is one of those great powerhouse scents from the 70's with amazing longevity and sillage, however I must add that I don't find this fragrance dated.

    Oh, it's just so comforting, like a hug from your loved one while you're curled up beside a fire on a cold Winter's night.

    09th April, 2012


    Xeryus Rouge by Givenchy

    The bottle seemed to exude a lot of promise. The red could have represented something hot and sexy, or masculine and bold. In all honesty, Xeryus is a bit of everything. This is quite possibly one of the most intriguing male fragrances I've come across in the last few years.

    It's crisp yet fiery and spicy. Xeryus Rouge makes me think of all those men in my life that were so bad that they were impossible to resist. Both those men and this fragrance has me drawn like a moth to a flame. This fragrance is dangerous and exciting.

    If you're looking for a scent that equates to sex, look no further. This woodsy, spicy and slightly sweet scent is commanding, masculine and sensual. It gets me all hot just talking about it.

    I can really sense the red hot chilli in this fragrance, which gives off a rather warm yet fresh, invigorating feel. The scent can be a little sharp and tart-like at times, but only when smelt up-close. From a distance, Xeryus Rouge has a definite, subtly sweet smoothness.

    This fragrance is so unique that it almost puts what I hold as 'out-of-the-ordinary' to shame. All the complexity that is contained in this one bottle is quite breath-taking.

    The lasting strength is great, and let's be honest, this fragrance has the ability to suit practically every season and every occasion. Just make sure that you wear this during a passionate night with your lover, it will drive her absolutely insane and she'll remember this fragrance for years to come.

    09th April, 2012


    Bois d'Arménie by Guerlain

    I am yet another female jumping on the band-wagon for Bois d'Armenie.

    Screw the 'for men only', I will happily douse myself in this and call myself a lady. It's such a compelling and beautiful fragrance, something that should be shared between the genders.

    This is everything I pretty much love in perfume; woods, incense, dustiness, spice and heaviness. Although vanilla is not listed as a note, it is most certainly there, particularly in the drydown.

    I may just describe this fragrance as creamy vanillic incense with faint, white woods. The pink pepper and the patchouli often like to provide an extra tang to this fragrance, however the sharpness of these notes comes and goes.

    Another favourite of mine from this exclusive Guerlain range is Rose Barbare, which I loved more for its complexity rather than the scent itself. The same could be said of Bois d'Armenie. If I ever tire of this fragrance (be damned if I do!), it will be Annick Menardo's exquisite work that will keep me interested.

    Most resinous notes tend to be masculine and sometimes fierce, however the resinous drydown of Bois d'Armenie is actually sweet. The sweetness was a shock to my senses, however the more I smelt it on my skin, the more addictive and perfect it seemed.

    Bois d'Armenie is elegant, like something I would wear to an upper-class formal event. The lasting power and sillage are of course a reflection of why this fragrance is priced so high. It is unfortunate that in my current financial predicament it will be a few years before I see a bottle of this. I guess it will be an incentive to try harder at University to score that high paying job which will fuel my adoration for expensive perfumes.

    04th April, 2012


    Scent Intense by Costume National

    I tested Scent Intense only minutes after I tested Scent Sheer, and I must say the differences are quite obvious.

    Scent Intense, is not only an intensified version, but an entirely different composition altogether. I immediately detected the patchouli in the opening which had a rather dusty and leathery feel to it.

    Beneath the strong, almost masculine notes, a sweet, milky jasmine note rises from the darkness bringing with it an interesting coziness.

    Although bold and dark, Scent Intense does have a rather feminine smoothness. Some are saying it smells a bit like incense and I somewhat agree. However I think it smells like an inclosed space with the scent of stale incense rather than the burning, smokey kind or the incense stick itself.

    Despite its rather gothic approach, I find this fragrance elegant, feminine and sophisticated. Perhaps even at times a little clean and powdery. While the patchouli and amber tend to dominate this fragrance, there is also a tar-like note blended with a 'raisin-y' tobacco note that only adds to the intrigue and the warmth.

    The sillage and lasting strength are highly commendable, however I wouldn't expect anything less. It seems to be that Scent Intense is quite a popular buy on the niche market which pleases me greatly. This fragrance is kind of geared towards women that want to smell a little bit different, steering clear of smelling like a bouquet of flowers or fruit juice.

    04th April, 2012


    Scent Sheer by Costume National

    Since the sudden rise in temperature in my country, sales people have been throwing many Summer friendly scents under my nose. Scent Sheer was one of those fragrances that got forced upon me.

    Scent Sheer, to my nose at least, is a linear blend of white musk and citrus. It's clean, Summery and pure, just like the sales person described, but it's nothing out of the ordinary.

    There's a hint of synthetic jasmine in there somewhere, however the scent itself is so transparent that you don't experience it for long. I'm not sure whether it was worth releasing this fragrance as it doesn't seem very niche to me at all. It's a bit of a let-down for Costume National.

    Scent Sheer is like the name suggests, uber-light, so don't expect marvellous sillage here. I must add however the impressive longevity which has managed to win me over.

    For a clean, crisp white musk I turn to White Moss by Acca Kappa, however for the more feminine niche-enthusiasts, Scent Sheer, I must admit, is a nice alternative.

    04th April, 2012


    Miranda by Fragonard

    Miranda by Fragonard is such a girly fragrance. This is the scent of vanilla icecream, coconut flavoured lip gloss and a bouquet of flowers from an over-the-top romantic and doting significant other.

    Funnily enough, as I was reviewing Miranda a random sugar ant ran over my tester strip but not without hesitating first to see if this perfume was indeed edible.

    I do mention this fragrance as being rather sweet, however it is nothing nauseatingly so. Jasmine and rose feature quite prominently with a milky sweet coconut and vanilla texture.

    Miranda actually smells like one of my favourite cakes to bake, Angel Vanilla Cake. The foody cake note is fortunately subtle and pretty on the skin.

    Very rarely does a fragrance remind me of a certain colour, however Miranda makes me think of baby pink, that innocent, feminine and youthful colour. The drydown which consists of powdery and creamy vanilla and sandalwood possibly adds to its cutesy appeal.

    Some people call this fragrance sexy. Personally, I'd most likely wear a scent like this on a shopping trip with the girls rather than during a night of passion with my lover. However each to their own.

    The longevity and sillage of this little wonder is fabulous, well worth the money spent. Actually, to be honest Fragonard is one of the most affordable niche houses on the market today, so there's no reason to dismiss this fragrance or any other of the Fragonard's perfumes for that matter.

    04th April, 2012


    Safari by Ralph Lauren

    I almost squealed with excitement when I saw a Safari tester in a store I visited a few weeks ago. It was on my 'for test' list a year ago but I had given up hope when every attempt to find it had failed.

    This fragrance was everything I hoped it would be. I can actually imagine myself wearing this on a safari, however it may not be too wonderful under desert conditions. Oh hell, I'd wear it anyway.

    Safari is a floral green like the olfactive group suggests, however it's also an oriental in the sense that it relies on some rather spicy and earthy notes to carry the composition. It's feminine but also very warm and sensual on the skin.

    At times it can be a little sharp, however I love its bold qualities. After some time the scent mellows into a spicy-floral soapiness which is quite different from the opening which was a combination of green accords, fruit and bold resins.

    Safari is surprisingly an elegant fragrance, so not what I was expecting, that is, something that you could wear with your khakis and your sun-hat. It's spicy and clean luxury to my nose.

    The sillage is fairly strong, however on my skin this fragrance struggled to last. I was very disappointed that such a classic fragrance didn't last the distance.

    Despite the longevity being poor, I still adore Safari. It's a shame that this fragrance doesn't accompany the rather popular Safari for Men on the shelves anymore.

    04th April, 2012


    Number 3 / Le 3me Homme / The Third Man by Caron

    Le 3' Homme de Caron, and like most masculine Caron scents, is a fragrance with a lot of what I call, 'oomph'.

    It's hard to find fragrances like this these days that represent the way a manly man should smell. This fragrance opens with such power and masculinity that it's difficult to resist a tester card sprayed with this, let alone a man.

    It's perhaps not as 'savage' as Yatagan, but Le 3' Homme de Caron is fiercely green and herbaceous in its opening. As it settles, lavender, sweet lemon and clove are apparent.

    For the first hour or so this is all about being a man, however towards the drydown it takes on a powdery accord and a sweetness that can only be likened to the scent of shaving foam. This is where female consumers may feel obliged to wear this fragrance themselves.

    It manages to be refined yet sensual, and upon further testing it seems that there's a touch of vanilla in there somewhere too. It's a pity that Caron's masculine fragrances have been overshadowed by the ghastly aromatics and aquatics as of late. I would buy up on scents such as these just to keep them in the market.

    Older men probably prefer this over the younger generation but I can only encourage them as a young twenty year old woman to broaden their horizons. This is not dated despite being made in the 80's and is in my opinion, one of the finest woody aromatic scents for men that I've had the pleasure of smelling.

    Wonderfully complex, soothing and classy, a man should not go past this classic Le 3' Homme de Caron.

    04th April, 2012


    Zut by Elsa Schiaparelli

    I am most likely reviewing the re-released version of Zut presented in 1998.

    This fragrance is very sweet, almost like strawberry jam. It is however a nicely done sweet fragrance, nowhere near as bad as some of those tacky candy-like celebrity scents we see these days.

    Zut opens with sweetened jasmine and syrupy berries. It attempts to be a gourmand, however as it begins to develop, it becomes more of a fruity floral.

    This fragrance seems a lot more dated than it is. It seems like something that should have been made in the 80's rather than the late 90's. A perfume boutique owner was the one that introduced me to this perfume, simply because she remembered it from her own youth. It was apparently her scent of choice when she was my age.

    The drydown is quite lovely with a soft, vanillary incense note and a touch of musk. Zut actually lasts considerably well and the sillage is also quite prominent.

    It may be a struggle to get hold of this fragrance these days. I never heard of its existence until recently and I've only ever seen it in this particular boutique hidden in the outskirts of the city.

    04th April, 2012


    Tea for Two by L'Artisan Parfumeur

    Tea for Two, is thankfully not all about the tea. I had a great fear that it would turn out like Bvlgari's Eau Parfumee au The Rouge, which is the closest thing to rich, black tea that I've ever come across.

    L'Artisan's Tea for Two opens quite spicy and leathery. I immediately detected a hint of steamy warmth, the sensual kind which suits both men and women. It was cozy, dark, intense and in some instances, a little tobacco-like.

    I didn't sense the tea note until the heart, which takes on a less foody role and more aromatic when blended with the smokey spices. There's also a touch of sweetness in this composition, kind of like a drizzle of honey in a cup of chai tea.

    The vanilla in the drydown, when blended with the spices, reminds me of a softer, more feminine version of Tom Ford's Tobacco Vanille. It has that familiar rich and sensual aroma, that while unisex, makes me feel like a confident, sexy woman.

    I kind of avoided this fragrance because of the tea reference. I can only stomach green tea, and even still it's not my drink of choice. People in the same vote should not disregard this fragrance. It's perfect for those who love bold, spicy, slightly masculine, smokey and exotic fragrances.

    Tea for Two is romantic, a little old-fashioned and rather unique. I love how special this smells on my skin. It's just the scent to wear on a cold, rainy day as it gives me that feeling of being warm, regal and classy.

    04th April, 2012


    Giulietta by Tocca

    A sales person directed me towards Giulietta when I visited a perfume boutique in search of an apple-based fragrance for a friend.

    Searching for an apple scent can be a nightmare or an exciting experience. The better the quality of the ingredients the more pleasing the apple scent often is.

    Giulietta is mostly crisp, watery green apple with a delicate array of soapy and clean florals. This is a lovely fragrance for those particularly humid and unbearable days in the midst of Summer.

    Smelling this fragrance is just like biting into an apple and sensing the misty juice droplets around your mouth. Giulietta is a fruity floral that relies on its subtlety to make its mark. It's nothing like the overpowering DKNY Be Delicious, the clean and sporty Ralph by Ralph Lauren or the candied Nina by Nina Ricci.

    For some reason Giulietta reminds me of a clean bathroom. It is perhaps that clean smell that it tends to have which reminds me of apple-scented shampoo and floral soaps. It's pretty, but perhaps a little too crystal clear and crisp for my personal tastes.

    The lasting strength is so-so, and the sillage can be rather weak at times. Giulietta comes and goes, barely noticeable in a large crowd.

    Personally I prefer the other offerings from the Tocca range, however please note that I'm not a fruity floral fan. I gave a sample of this to my friend whom I had in mind and she loved it. So each to their own.

    04th April, 2012


    Brigitte by Tocca

    Brigitte is one of the nicest spiced florals on the niche market today in my opinion.

    This fragrance does have some similarities to Burberry Brit Red, especially with the ginger, rhubarb and rose combo. When I first sprayed this on my wrist I could have sworn it was an exact copy. There is a difference however, with Brigitte being sweeter, less foody, softer and slightly powdery.

    Burberry Brit Red is a bold and sexy fragrance, whereas Brigitte is more feminine, classic and refined. To most people, this fragrance could appear to be a fruity floral, especially with the tropical papaya note in the opening. It does however soften into a pleasing and somewhat addictive blend of powdery iris, spicy rhubarb, ginger and saffron and beautiful, feminine pink roses.

    I didn't have any trouble with the lasting power, I thought it lasted really well on my skin. I originally thought that this fragrance was casual, however due to its wonderful sillage and its rather delicious smell, I would urge anyone to wear this out on a date or even to a nightclub. I think men would be very drawn to Brigitte.

    One review I read likened this fragrance to a bowl of 'vanilla-sweetened apples and rhubarb, spiced with cinnamon and ginger, with a perfect flaky-doughy crust and real whipped cream' (Asha, Basenotes). Although this fragrance isn't a true gourmand, it does have a somewhat tasty quality that I really enjoy.

    I think this is the perfect scent to represent the classic French film siren Brigitte Bardot. It's a pretty scent, with an underlying, yet innocent sexual nature.

    04th April, 2012


    parfums*PARFUMS Series 5 Sherbet: Peppermint by Comme des Garçons

    Commes Des Garcons Series 5 Sherbet: Peppermint may have a big name, but this little, understated scent is the closest thing I've ever smelt to fresh, green mint.

    I'm not talking chewing gum, candy or strange chemicals, the mint represented here in this fragrance is just like the actual herb, like something picked fresh out of a garden. My mother used to grow mint in her herb garden when I was tiny and I still remember that intense minty smell when you rubbed a leaf between your fingers.

    I wore this fragrance when it was fairly warm outdoors, and it served its purpose in refreshing me throughout the day. I honestly didn't get the sherbet reference, there is nothing sugary or fizzy about this scent at all.

    Series 5 Sherbet: Peppermint is definitely unisex, delicate and cooling. The longevity is fairly poor unfortunately yet this fragrance is easy to re-apply throughout the day.

    The naturalness presented in this fragrance is what gets me rather excited, but when it comes down to it, this fragrance is quite an acquired taste. It's not really me, hence the reason why I haven't added it to my wishlist.

    04th April, 2012


    Missoni (new) by Missoni

    Missoni just doesn't sit too well with me. It disturbs me, yet it's difficult to pinpoint exactly what it is that turns me off it.

    For starters I dislike strong, overly juicy citrus openings, which is exactly how Missoni opens. It was a mixture of bitter and sour oranges with a touch of salty ocean water. It fizzled in my nose and made me a little nauseous.

    As it settled it became much more bearable, however the oranges do tend to clash with the softer floral notes in the heart. I am a little confused and amazed as to how 'Perfumes: The Guide' rated this fragrance five stars.

    I was looking forward to the chocolate note in the base, however when I finally smelt it on my skin, it was the last straw and I promptly went to the bathroom and scrubbed Missoni off my wrist. It goes from being refreshing, tangy and sharp to dark, chocolatey and far too foody.

    Missoni almost turns me off orange-flavoured chocolate for good. Jaffas are like a worst nightmare for me now

    04th April, 2012


    True Religion for Women by True Religion

    I hate to sound so negative, but why do designers bother to release a fragrance that is going to be yet another predictable and generic fruity scent, marketed as being 'clean, crisp and modern'.

    This fragrance is attempting to emulate D&G's Light Blue and DKNY's Fresh Blossom. Instead of a harsh lemon note, green apple is the centerpoint in the opening. It has a somewhat fresh watery-ness.

    Sure True Religion makes me feel clean, yet the more it develops, I begin to feel sticky. The scent doesn't sit too well on my skin, and I blame cheap ingredients.

    Thankfully True Religion is light and rather fleeting. I'm a little surprised by how expensive this fragrance is in my country when compared to overseas. Perhaps my negative reaction is partly due to the vast differences in price and its over-the-top marketing.

    I'm attempting the smell this fragrance again now that it has reached the drydown, and I must admit that it gets gradually better, less tangy apple, and more smooth, refreshing cedar, freesia and musk.

    Not bad, but not wonderful either. It seems like a copy of so many other scents on the market these days.

    04th April, 2012


    Donna Karan Signature by Donna Karan

    Donna Karan must really love her dark woodsy scents. Donna Karan, the re-released version in a tall, black cylindrical bottle, while it isn't as popular or as bold as Black Cashmere and Chaos, it is a remarkable scent on its own.

    Donna Karan opens with a surprisingly soft, almost soapy blend of fruits and flowers. The fruits are so mild in this composition that it comes nowhere near the fruity concoctions produced in the DKNY range.

    As the fragrance settles, Donna Karan develops into a rather heady and warm blend of dark florals, earthy patchouli, thick resins and smokey woods. I believe if it wasn't for the sugary vanilla note in the heart and drydown, this fragrance would smell quite masculine and thick.

    This fragrance is sexy, but in a rather subtle fashion. The scent speaks confidence, power and maturity. From what I've experienced from both Donna Karan's fragrance range and DKNY's releases, real women wear Donna Karan and young girls, DKNY.

    Despite it's dominant woodsiness and complexity, Donna Karan is rather clean smelling too. It is very unlike Black Cashmere and Chaos which tend to be very animalistic and dirty in a sense. This is the kind of fragrance I would wear to an office in Winter, that is, if I worked in an inclosed atmosphere.

    The lasting power is very good and the sillage is average to moderately strong. In all honesty I do prefer Donna Karan's stronger blends, however Donna Karan Signature is just as worthy of being re-released as all the others.

    04th April, 2012


    Jean Paul Gaultier Classique by Jean Paul Gaultier

    To clear up any confusion that this review may bring about, I have tried the EDP concentration of Classique, in a woman's torso shaped bottle with intricate, lace-like detailing. From what I've heard, the EDT and EDP are two entirely different scents.

    This fragrance is a warm floral. It speaks to me as the essential feminine scent, one that is indeed very classic in its appeal. It does have a rather oriental feel, possibly due to the anise, ginger, plum, vanilla and amber.

    Classique is often difficult to describe. It's recognizable in the sense that it's a popular scent, however when worn on the skin it stirs up so many different opinions. I enjoy Classique, I also find it worthy of its acclaim.

    This fragrance is heavy, but show me one fragrance that has lasted decades which isn't. It's a mixture of rich floral accords, subtle spices and an interesting creamy sweetness. While I do love this composition, I must admit that the sweetness doesn't work too well with my chemistry.

    A wardrobe classic but also perhaps a little overworn, Classique is in my opinion, a love it or a hate it. The same could be said of its male counterpart, Le Male. It's thankfully everything I hoped it would be; sexy, rich, floral and feminine. The perfect fragrance to represent a true woman.

    04th April, 2012


    DK Collection Chaos by Donna Karan

    I am at a loss of understanding as to why Donna Karan discontinued many of her earlier fragrances. Thankfully she has brought them back in the form of limited releases in selected stores. I feel incredibly privileged to have the opportunity to try both Black Cashmere and Chaos before they disappear off the market for good.

    Chaos, to my nose, is a clean, unique and somewhat soapy, sandalwood based fragrance. It's complex, distinctive and expensive smelling.

    It's not too heavy, like some woodsy scents tend to be. You could possibly get away with wearing this in the Summer and Spring months. I find the scent to be very relaxing, non-gender specific and thoroughly enjoyable.

    The hints of oriental spiciness throughout the composition does bear some similarities to Black Cashmere, just perhaps not as rich, sensual and dark. It's a beautiful fragrance, particularly one that will appeal to any lovers of intense woodsiness and understated mystery.

    The 'chaos' comes from its slightly animalistic tone, which I find rather arousing on both men and women. This is not a fragrance for the faint of heart or those who consider themselves refined. A hint of carnation every now and then fools you into thinking this is pretty and feminine until the woods force you to think otherwise.

    Some reviewers are saying incense, and while it is spicy and smokey in some instances, it is not entirely incense to my nose. Regardless of what people describe it as or perceive it to be, Chaos is a truly hauntingly beautiful fragrance that deserves to be around for a long time.

    04th April, 2012


    L'Instant de Guerlain by Guerlain

    I'm a little undecided as to how I feel regarding this particular fragrance. L'Instant de Guerlain fascinates me, yet also leaves me dissatisfied.

    First off, it strikes me as being very modern and elegant. To my nose, I tend to get a lot of powdery and musky iris and amber, (this is a review for the EDP by the way).

    I read somewhere that this is a rather popular choice for brides on their wedding day, and I can see why. L'Instant de Guerlain is polite, pretty and classy, evidently formal in its approach, but nothing too bold.

    It's clean, musky powderiness is what bothers me slightly. I often refrain from using the term 'old lady', yet for once I'll say that I feel this fragrance is too old for a young twenty year old, such as myself. It's a scent for tea parties and reading a book in bed, not something to match my somewhat wild, energetic and partying lifestyle.

    In all honesty, L'Instant de Guerlain strikes me as a more modern and a less heavier version of the classic Shalimar and L'Heure Bleue. I noted this similarity when I first smelt it, however it wasn't until now that it occured to me that they are all from the same house.

    When it comes down to it, I much prefer L'Instant de Guerlain over and above Insolence EDT and Idylle which leave much to be desired, however my appreciation for Guerlain still lies with their classics, especially those produced before the year 2000.

    04th April, 2012


    Alberta Ferretti by Alberta Ferretti

    Alberta Ferretti was a pleasant surprise. I really expected something generic, nauseating and cheap, but I found something soft, nicely done and wearable.

    This fragrance is lightly floral, with a soft and sweet muskiness. It doesn't usually get much more feminine than this.

    In person the bottle looks much nicer than shown in this picture above. For all those people who are rolling their eyes thinking this is yet another typical designer fragrance, think again. Sure, Alberta Ferretti is nothing out of the ordinary but it's one of the nicest subtle and inoffensive florals on the market today.

    The lasting power is quite exceptional, and as I've previously mentioned, the sillage is intimate and polite. I see this delicate, slightly powdery bouquet on almost any woman of any age. It would even make a lovely present for a young girl just being introduced to perfume for the first time.

    This beautiful fragrance is one recent release that I highly recommend.

    04th April, 2012


    Mediterraneo by Carthusia

    I usually detest citrus-based scents, especially lemon ones. I often find them too sharp, too much like the scent of detergent or too candied. Mediterraneo on the other hand, is perfection.

    The composition is mostly lively, watery citrus, quite natural smelling when compared to other citrus perfumes. There is a touch of tea leaves, however it's not particularly strong. I love how refreshing Mediterraneo is on the skin.

    It's nothing out of the ordinary, but for what it's worth, I'd choose it over and above many Summer scents on the market these days.

    It feels like a cologne or a body splash, yet it comes in the form of an EDT, with great lasting strength and moderate sillage.

    Like craving a glass of icy cool water on a hot Summer's day, Mediterraneo is the kind of fragrance that you reach for to feel refreshed and energised during such weather. It is, in my opinion, much nicer than D&G Light Blue and Annick Goutal's Eau d'Hadrien, and all in all, much more exclusive.

    04th April, 2012


    Ligea "La Sirena" by Carthusia

    The love I bear for Carthusia all began with this fragrance. Ligea la Sirena is one of those fragrances which I find highly addictive, meaning a sure future addition to my collection.

    This fragrance opens with a scent that reminds me of gingerbread men. Despite the funny looks I received from the sales people when I announced this, I hold true to my statement.

    It's a tad sugary, spicy and deliciously powdery. Everyone is mentioning the powder. Sure, there's powder but it's nothing like Chanel's No.5 or No.22, and nothing in comparison to Carthusia's more powdery Aria di Capri.

    To my nose, Ligea la Sirena is incredibly sensual, somewhat edible and dusty in an old-fashioned sense. I love strong, old-fashioned and spicy scents, so this fragrance is right up my alley.

    There are many notes missing from this listing, some of which are; cinnamon, white rose, ginger, vanilla and amber. Particularly towards the drydown, Ligea la Sirena bears a resemblance to the beautiful and classic L'Heure Bleue and Shalimar, both by Guerlain.

    This is one fragrance which manages to seduce you as it moves through its development. Beginning with a sugary and foody cinnamon, mandarin and ginger burst, it later develops into a soft, feminine and woodsy powder base.

    The longevity is rather impressive and the same could be said for the sillage. I feel comfortable in scents like this one, and I can agree with the consensus that its a versatile fragrance, for almost every season and occasion.

    04th April, 2012


    Io Capri by Carthusia

    Finally a Carthusia fragrance that suits both men and women.

    Io Capri is a beautiful, fresh, clean and exotic blend of mint, tea and wild fig. A touch of soap in this fragrance makes it so perfect for warm weather.

    The mint in this fragrance smells nothing like toothpaste or sugared mints. It's more herbaceous, like a mint leaf picked fresh from a plant and then ground into a cup of hot tea with a side plate of figs.

    It's a touch green, but nothing grassy or mossy. The rich tea note does tend to dominate, however the scent is rather soft, so it's nothing like the monster Eau Parfumee au The Rouge by Bvlgari which reminds me of teacher's staffrooms.

    Io Capri is rather true to the Mediterranean weather; pleasant, wearable and never overbearing. If I were to travel on a cruise-ship tomorrow, this is what I'd choose to wear.

    I particularly like this fragrance's rather casual and laid-back approach. It makes me feel comfortable just being me. This fragrance doesn't need to be masculine and/or feminine, sexy, loud or sharp to make a statement. It's beautiful on its own.

    04th April, 2012

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