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  1. #1

    Default Newbie perfume questions - Advice appreciated :)

    Hi. I'm new to the community and wondered if any of you perfume-savvy types could give me some advice.

    I've owned quite a few scents before, but find it hard to identify what 'family' of scent it is I tend to go for, or what note it is I'm picking up on each time. I figure that, if I manage to identify this, then I should be able to choose new scents (online) without inadvertantly buying something that just doesn't suit.

    My all time favourite perfume is Chanel 5. I can't tell what it is, but it's just like there's a richness to it that I can't find in other scents - they seem 'flat' by comparison. I also like White Linen and L'Air du Temps. Is there any chance that these all come from the same family?

    Other favourites are Chanel Cristalle, Chanel 19, and Van Cleef and Arpels (the one in the sort of crystal shaped bottle.

    I do sort of like to leave a trail of perfume behind me, too. Not too excessive, but definitely 'there'.

    So, can anyone help? I find it hard to identify individual notes and families - and I'd like to get started on the right track.

  2. #2

    Default Re: Newbie perfume questions - Advice appreciated :)

    I'm rotten at identifying families and notes, myself. However, I know enough to say that you have good taste. Mmmmmmm. nice stuff!

    I'm no help on the families! I don't know what my favorite scents have in common other than the fact that they are consistently categorized by others as "Chypres." Which, is nice to know, but I can't for the life of me smell what is common between Mitsouko and Givenchy III that makes them both chypres!

    Speaking of which, based on your comments and likes, I recommend trying both of those above mentioned scents. I think you'd like them both!
    Do you think "Old Lady Perfume" is a compliment? Join the Scent of an Old Woman Social Group and chat in-depth about vintage and classic fragrances!


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  3. #3

    Default Re: Newbie perfume questions - Advice appreciated :)

    Chanel is floral-aldehydic; Crystalle is a green floral I believe. I'm not familiar with Van Clef or L'Air du Temps. What might help is to read the reviews for these fragrances in the directory -- that way you can see what/how others put their olifactory impressions into words. Some of the reviews are pretty detailed with in-depth exploration of notes. I've found that pretty helpful personally.

    If you like Chanel No 5, also try No 5 Eau Premiere.

    If you like Chanel style in general, I'd recommend trying Chanel Les Exclusifs collection -- I suspect you might especially like Bel Respiro (green floral) & 31 Rue Cambon (modern chypre); Coromandel and Sycomore are also good. I've not smelled the rest -- I believe the range also contains No 18, Beige and maybe more. Not sure if Cuir de Russie is part of the Les Exclusifs range, but it's a wonderful floral leather (more floral to me than leather). I realize Les Exclusifs are darned expensive, but you can often find small decants to sample (such as at Scent Splits wiki -- just google it).

    I get Chanel-like vibe from Parfums MDCI Promesse de l'Aube and Enlévement au Sérail; samples are available at Luckyscent. (I don’t ever intend to pay full price for a bottle, but the line is worth sampling. MDCI also sells a "discovery pack" of 5 X 10 ml different bottles for about $90 US, which is a fair deal, if you are ever feel like getting more than a sample.

    Last, but not least, I find "No 5-like" beauty in Parfum de Nicolai Odalisque; it's a beautiful green floral (not as sharp as Chrystalle was to me). The line is much more affordable than MDCI (relatively speaking of course). If you fall in love with Odalisque, you can get a 30 ml bottle for slightly over $40.

    It think samples and decants are a better use of your money at this stage than ordering full bottles blind (and definitely much more fun!)
    For sale: Armani Prive (Cuir, Jade), Yves Rocher, Artisan Ambre body cream http://community.basenotes.net/showthread.php?t=228894

  4. #4

    Default Re: Newbie perfume questions - Advice appreciated :)

    It appears (and keep in mind that I have limited perfume knowledge ) that your favorites tend to have jasmine, rose, sandalwood, and ylang-ylang. And either vetiver or galbanum or both, for that sharp green. Cedar also seems to repeat among your choices.

    I'm guessing that it's aldehydes that makes the fragrance "not flat" for you. People seem to refer to aldehydes as seeming "bubbly", "effervescent" and other words that seem like the opposite of flat.

    My second guess on flat or not flat is the absence or presence of the sharp green note.

    Crayfish

  5. #5

    Default Re: Newbie perfume questions - Advice appreciated :)

    I am also a newbie, but Chanel No. 5 caught my attention! I love it so much, but I can never seem to find it at a good discount. But it is so luxurious - that is the word I use to describe it. Decadent!

    If you are looking for a new scent that will leave 'a trail', I have been wearing Calvin Klein Eternity for Women for several years, and I have had complete strangers (on the bus, subway, on a cashier's line in a store, etc) ask me what fragrance I am wearing because it smells so good. My honey bought it for me - he has this habit of buying me the women's fragrance of whatever men's brand he buys for himself (i.e. Eternity, Ralph Lauren Romance, and the one that didn't work - Polo Sport). But, a scent always smells different on everyone (i.e. Polo Sport smelled great on a friend, but on me - it smelled like urine - seriously!)

    RL Romance is another good one. But, Eternity is my fave! JMHO. Hope I helped!
    Good to meet you!
    Andi

  6. #6
    Off-Scenter
    Guest

    Default Re: Newbie perfume questions - Advice appreciated :)

    As it happens, your favorites are mostly aldehydic and green floral scents (the former are classified by the perfume taxonomist Michael Edwards as "soft florals"). Chanel No. 5 is the archetypical aldehydic floral scent, and Kess is right to suggest you may enjoy Chanel's Les Exclusifs collection, especially No. 18, No. 22 and 28 La Pausa. Some other fine aldehydic floral scents (and near relations) you may enjoy include Piguet's Baghari, Annick Goutal's Heure Exquise, Iris Poudre, Azzaro Couture, Acqua di Parma Profumo and Acqua di Parma Iris Nobile, Estée Lauder's Alliage and Private Collection, Ivoire, Van Cleef & Arpels First, and Yves St. Laurent Cinéma.

    Happy hunting!

  7. #7

    Default Re: Newbie perfume questions - Advice appreciated :)

    Wow - so much fabulous feedback! Thank-you so much!

    YouCanCallMeMo - Nice taste yourself too! Mitsouko and Givenchy III are both gorgeous scents.

    kess - Thanks so much for the family info. A number of the scents you mentioned are new to me, especially the Parfums MDCI ones. I look forward to trying them! You're right as regards the Chanel scents, too - I don;t think I've ever encountered a Chanel I didn't like.

    Crayfish - Thanks so much for your ideas. I went away and looked at more of my favourites and you're spot on - aldehydes and galbanum seem to be the common themes. The other notes you mention all feature in the middle notes and the dry down. Your supposedly 'limited' knowledge got me exactly

    Andibeth - It's funny you say that, because there's a lot of Calvin Klein fragrances that I think are really lovely. Eternity is gorgeous, and I really like Truth, too. And I'm always glad to know of more perfumes I can leave a trail of in my wake! Thanks

    Vibert - Going on your own, Crayfish and kess's suggestions, I've researched aldehydic scents and they do seem to be something I really like. There's just something about them that says proper, glamourous perfume to me. Thank-you so much for your suggestions too, I've picked three to try and am watching them on E-Bay. I'll post if I win any!

    Again, thanks so much to everyone who posted - you've really helped set me on the right path for what my tastes are - as well as what I can branch out and try.

  8. #8

    Default Re: Newbie perfume questions - Advice appreciated :)

    Just thought I'd mention these few outstanding creations if you want to leave a trial behind you:
    Aimez Moi - Caron (1996) - fresh, rich and woody
    Montaigne - Caron, the current re-release version is simply beautiful, a classic and still as chic as ever
    Patricia De Nicolai's Number One or Sacrebleu are certainly wonderfully heady, sumptious and decadent contenders.
    Hope you enjoy trying all the different fragrances!

  9. #9

    Default Re: Newbie perfume questions - Advice appreciated :)

    Quote Originally Posted by aaz View Post
    Just thought I'd mention these few outstanding creations if you want to leave a trial behind you:
    Aimez Moi - Caron (1996) - fresh, rich and woody
    Montaigne - Caron, the current re-release version is simply beautiful, a classic and still as chic as ever
    Patricia De Nicolai's Number One or Sacrebleu are certainly wonderfully heady, sumptious and decadent contenders.
    Hope you enjoy trying all the different fragrances!
    Thanks so much for the suggestions - they'll be going on my list!

    Managed to get my first new scent to try today. I got a big bottle of Ivoire on E-bay - so will be looking forward to getting it through the post next week.

  10. #10

    Default Re: Newbie perfume questions - Advice appreciated :)

    Even if my answer comes a bit late, my personal advice on this subject:

    Male frag somewhat reminding of Chanel No.5- Knize Ten
    Female frag somewhat reminding of Chanel No.5- Balenciaga's Le Dix

    In spite of the many differences between them, these two scents have a few common points: citrus floral opening, old-school leathery dry down, exhaling both richness (sensual, warm, magnetic) yet impeccable distinction.

  11. #11

    Default Re: Newbie perfume questions - Advice appreciated :)

    If you want an interesting masculine take on "sharper more citric/green opening, softer more floral drydown", try out Antidote from Viktor & Rolf.

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