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  1. #1

    Lightbulb Powerhouse Girl Fumes

    Inspired by DEMON's thread in Just Starting Out, but I've wondered this for a while. Powerhouses are most commonly referred to masculines of a certain era, but I know there have to be some feminine "powerhouses," too. So let's define powerhouse as it relates to our side of the board!

    What is a feminine powerhouse fume and what makes it so?

  2. #2

    Default Re: Powerhouse Girl Fumes

    It's a bit of a cliche I know, but I associate the "powerhouse" scents with
    the flamboyant 80's along with power dressing, shoulder pads and full hair.
    The scents that come to mind are Poison, Gorgio Beverley Hills, Red Door,
    Cinnabar, Amarige and White Diamonds (mostly American I have to say!)
    Estee Lauder was the perfumer who "upped the ante" on the strength of scents
    and put higher doses of everything in her perfumes to attract a new audience.

    I think Angel would be classed as a "powerhouse" fragrance - I certainly wouldn't want to be
    in an elevator with someone who had over-applied that particular perfume!
    I don't know enough about chemistry to say what makes a scent smell so strong - but I'm sure
    there are people on this board who will know.

    The only loud scent I really enjoy is Hypnotic Poison - I could drown in the stuff. Oh and maybe
    Roma.
    Last edited by kewart; 17th March 2010 at 09:05 AM.

  3. #3

    Default Re: Powerhouse Girl Fumes

    Angel and the big hitters from the 80's are the powerhouses. Opium and Poison are the two usually spoke off.
    DONNA

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Powerhouse Girl Fumes

    +1 Poison
    +1 Opium
    +1 Angel
    +1 Giorgio Of Beverly Hills !!
    Knowing by EL too .
    Last edited by Mimi Gardenia; 17th March 2010 at 11:06 AM.
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  5. #5
    Eva Pasco
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    Default Re: Powerhouse Girl Fumes

    I agree with the above definitions of "powerhouse fumes" as well as the examples of such.

    Adding...a "powerhouse fume" is not only flamboyant, but a siren which keeps on ticking with sillage for hours on end.

    I hereby nominate one of Victoria Secret's own:


  6. #6
    Cartoonish Royalty Le Grand Duc's Avatar
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    Default Re: Powerhouse Girl Fumes

    poison

  7. #7

    Default Re: Powerhouse Girl Fumes

    Of course, another vote for Poison--the real stuff from the 1980s.

    Any perfume that can be banned from public places in France earns the right to be called a "powerhouse."
    "No sweet perfume ever tortured me more than this." Desert Rose by Sting and Cheb Mami, Album 1999.

  8. #8

    Default Re: Powerhouse Girl Fumes

    Some of these have already been mentioned, so here's another vote for Poison, Opium, Knowing and Giorgio, and I'll add these -

    Ungaro Diva
    Paloma Picasso
    Clinique Aromatics Elixir
    Halston
    Chanel Coco
    Givenchy Ysatis
    Calvin Klein Obsession
    Cacharel LouLou
    Boucheron
    J.L. Scherrer Scherrer 2

    Something that Powerhouse Fragrances have in common is their ability to be easily detected and identified in smoky night clubs (and they were all smoky in the 80s), and their willingness to fight each other for air space. They might be pretty, but they aren't shy.
    Last edited by Evangeline; 17th March 2010 at 01:53 PM.

  9. #9

    Default Re: Powerhouse Girl Fumes

    Saweet! I knew Poison would be brought up a lot, but was really surprised to see Angel as the first discussed! But of course, it makes sense.

    Eva, I think I'm with you on the broader definition, so I'll second Rapture and nominate Tabu. Tabu is easily the loudest fume I own.

    In the traditional (?) sense of the word, I definitely second Ysatis. I've had to talk myself out of a fb of Ysatis a few times.
    Last edited by Sunnyfunny; 20th March 2010 at 03:17 AM.

  10. #10
    Cartoonish Royalty Le Grand Duc's Avatar
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    Default Re: Powerhouse Girl Fumes

    Quote Originally Posted by Evangeline View Post
    Givenchy Ysatis
    OMG! How could I forget this?
    The love of my life ...

  11. #11

    Default Re: Powerhouse Girl Fumes

    Powerhouses are a fav in either gender category for me. Powerhouses make a statement either through uniqueness, brash loudness, cut-though-the-air sillage, tenacious longevity, or any combination of these. They seduce by clubbing one over the head. In masculine scents these tend to be overthetop fougeres and chypres with some animalics to them. On the female side I'm thinking it's more about BIG florals/aldehydes and heavy orientals.

    I agree with all the choices thus far, especially Opium, Poison, Obsession, Angel, Giorgio, etc.

    Adding Chanel No. 5 edp (edp only), Fracas, Bandit, Magie Noire, Youth Dew, Azuree, Flowerbomb, Bal a Versailles, Nahema, Samsara.
    I offer you perfume,
    More for its pleasure than for yours;
    You perfume perfume.

    --Anonymous Ancient Greek Love Lyric

  12. #12
    Hillaire
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    Default Re: Powerhouse Girl Fumes

    Adding:
    Mackie
    JS No 4
    Accenti di Gucci
    Theorema
    XS Extreme Girl
    L'Arte di Gucci
    Gucci 3
    Clandestine
    La Nuit
    Oh La La (Azzaro)
    Azzaro 9
    Gem
    Lauren
    Chloe
    Salvador Dali
    Romeo Gigli
    Tiffany
    Coco
    K de Krizia
    Krazy Krizia
    Teatro alla Scala
    Fendi
    Parfum de Peau
    Jardins de Bagatelle
    Panthere
    Rumba
    Must
    Venice
    Talisman
    Enrico Coveri
    Nino Cerruti
    gosh....

  13. #13

    Default Re: Powerhouse Girl Fumes

    Bandit...I still can't wear it ! And Poison...can't wear that one either.

  14. #14
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    Default Re: Powerhouse Girl Fumes

    Adding:

    First by Van Cleef & Arpels
    1000 by Jean Patou
    Citizen Queen by Juliette Has a Gun
    Rush by Gucci

    ...and I agree, quite a number of Estee Lauders e.g. Knowing, Beautiful etc.

  15. #15

    Default Re: Powerhouse Girl Fumes

    Insolence
    Guerlain keeps the spirit of the 80s alive and well.
    Last edited by Kevin Guyer; 17th March 2010 at 11:36 PM.

  16. #16

    Default Re: Powerhouse Girl Fumes

    Bandit (which, oddly enough, is quite tame on me.)
    And I've taken to combining it with Bvlgari Black (and Sycomore, on the drydown of Sycomore) because the trio is amazing.
    It has quirkiness, leather, slight sweetness... some presence (like I said, on me the Bandit alone is tame)...

    And I love smelling my wrist when I wear it. Joy in the wearing thereof = Power!
    Last edited by actiasluna; 18th March 2010 at 01:48 AM.
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  17. #17

    Default Re: Powerhouse Girl Fumes

    Quote Originally Posted by Hillaire View Post
    Adding:
    Mackie
    JS No 4
    Accenti di Gucci
    Theorema
    XS Extreme Girl
    L'Arte di Gucci
    Gucci 3
    Clandestine
    La Nuit
    Oh La La (Azzaro)
    Azzaro 9
    Gem
    Lauren
    Chloe
    Salvador Dali
    Romeo Gigli
    Tiffany
    Coco
    K de Krizia
    Krazy Krizia
    Teatro alla Scala
    Fendi
    Parfum de Peau
    Jardins de Bagatelle
    Panthere
    Rumba
    Must
    Venice
    Talisman
    Enrico Coveri
    Nino Cerruti
    gosh....
    Yikes!

    That impressive (um, an understatement) wardrobe of yours makes you uniquely qualified to comment!

    Nice!
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  18. #18

    Default Re: Powerhouse Girl Fumes

    As defined by the original poster, I guess Opium would also qualify.
    Actias luna's fragrance reviews | Now blogging with AromiErotici, Carrie Meredith, Mimi Gardenia, Sugandaraja, Asha, bluesoul, shamu1, Redneck Perfumisto and Daly Beauty at Il Mondo di Odore
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  19. #19
    vita odorifera
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    Default Re: Powerhouse Girl Fumes

    +

    EL Knowing
    Oscar - Oscar de la Renta
    Amouage Ubar
    ointments and perfume delight the heart....

    #BBOG!

  20. #20

    Default Re: Powerhouse Girl Fumes

    I never thought of Chloe and Lauren as powerhouse frags, I wore them frequently back in the day... but YSL Paris and Poison sure filled the powerhouse bill for me personally.

  21. #21

    Default Re: Powerhouse Girl Fumes

    Oh, sweet and powerful memories of the 80s.

    All of the ones I owned have already been mentioned.

    I would add Fracas as a powerhouse
    Evenstar

  22. #22

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    Default Re: Powerhouse Girl Fumes

    In my book, nothing approximates a women's powerhouse fragrance like one of the pillars of women's perfumery: YSL's Opium. It's broad shouldered, exotic, and purely feminine in all its glory. 'Nuff said.

  23. #23

    Default Re: Powerhouse Girl Fumes

    Quote Originally Posted by *bloomy* View Post
    I never thought of Chloe and Lauren as powerhouse frags, I wore them frequently back in the day... but YSL Paris and Poison sure filled the powerhouse bill for me personally.
    I agree about the Chloe and Lauren - I still wear them occasionally, and they are pretty soft on me....but then again many people completely over-sprayed making everything powerhouse! Paris has always been softer on me too, but vintage Poison is definitely a heavy-hitter, even with a light hand.
    Last edited by Evangeline; 19th March 2010 at 03:43 AM.

  24. #24

    Default Re: Powerhouse Girl Fumes

    Am I the only one who thinks Poison smells solely like... grapes? I read so many descriptions, but I only get grape juice. Strong, that is... very strong. I don;t mean anything bad, it's ok but still... it's grapes, and no other note.
    "Diego: Why did you do that? you could've died trying to rescue me.
    Manfred: That's what you do in a herd: you look out for each other. " (Ice Age)

  25. #25

    Default Re: Powerhouse Girl Fumes

    It's so funny when I think back to the time when I wore Lauren, it was my signature frag and I was SUCH a preppy. Oxford shirts with sweater vests and Cole Haan penny loafers. I always felt so feminine in it. I still like Lauren now, even though it has probably been reformulated over the years...resisting the urge to buy some just for the nostalgia.

    Then I moved onto Poison and was generally loud all the way around. Shoulder pads, electric colors, sparkly Stagelight makeup and HUGE belts, the wider the better studs and rhinestones aplenty! Big Permed Hair to compete with those shoulder pads, god I musta looked hysterical.

    I don't recall smelling like grapes during my Poison phase.

  26. #26
    Hillaire
    Guest

    Default Re: Powerhouse Girl Fumes

    Well, some newer ones are Soir de Lune and Natori.

    a couple of classics I forgot are Rochas Femme, Rochas Mystere, Rochas Byzance, AMOUAGE GOLD, the original La Prairie, The original Jil Sander Pure, and the original La Perla. BANG!

  27. #27

    Default Re: Powerhouse Girl Fumes

    Charlie, Tatiana, Ciara, Ted Lapidus' Creation -- all pretty "powerhousey" to my way of thinking.
    Last edited by Leesee; 19th March 2010 at 07:15 AM. Reason: error

  28. #28
    Hillaire
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    Default Re: Powerhouse Girl Fumes

    How could I forget Tatiana! That one was lethal!
    Also Replique by Raphael! And the original Gianfranco Ferre!

  29. #29

    Default Re: Powerhouse Girl Fumes

    From my own wardrobe, when I'm feeling especially "loud", I"ll reach for Nahema (pure parfum, which boldly speaks, unlike the EDT version which just screeches).
    Passionate supporter of parrot welfare www.thegabrielfoundation.org

  30. #30

    Default Re: Powerhouse Girl Fumes

    Quote Originally Posted by Le Grand Duc View Post
    OMG! How could I forget this?
    The love of my life ...
    I'm not at all surprised to hear this from you, Duc! Do you smell similarities between Ysatis and Hypnotic Poison? I sure do! I should do a side-by-side when I'm not stuffed up, so I can actually explain it.
    Quote Originally Posted by Leesee View Post
    Charlie, Tatiana, Ciara, Ted Lapidus' Creation -- all pretty "powerhousey" to my way of thinking.
    I was given a mini of Tatiana for my wedding shower (like five years ago).
    Quote Originally Posted by Hillaire View Post
    How could I forget Tatiana! That one was lethal!
    I don't know if mine was reformed, but yes. Definitely lethal. Crazy indolic. I got rid of it because I knew I'd never wear it, but now I wish I'd kept some, just for reference.
    Last edited by Sunnyfunny; 19th March 2010 at 06:29 PM.

  31. #31
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    Default Re: Powerhouse Girl Fumes

    Nominating:
    JUNGLE GARDENIA
    Niki de St Phalle

    to the Feminine Powerhouse list

  32. #32
    Hillaire
    Guest

    Default Re: Powerhouse Girl Fumes

    Wow! I am always thinking Niki was a very subtle scent. I drown in it. Anyone else think it's loud?

  33. #33

    Default Re: Powerhouse Girl Fumes

    Quote Originally Posted by Hillaire View Post
    Wow! I am always thinking Niki was a very subtle scent. I drown in it. Anyone else think it's loud?
    I've never found it loud exactly, but something about it seems shrill to me. I haven't tried it in a while so I really shouldn't comment. But I'm surprised that you find Gianfranco Ferre to be a powerhouse - are you talking about the bottle with the crystal hanging from its neck? Now I think of that one as very soft and sort of shyly feminine, almost delicate. I get lots of soft honeysuckle and something powdery like mimosa, but nothing brash or loud (and as bloomy and I discussed above, we also find Lauren and Chloe to be on the softer side unless over-applied.) Could some of these disparate observations simply be a matter of concentration?

  34. #34

    Default Re: Powerhouse Girl Fumes

    Quote Originally Posted by Hillaire View Post
    Wow! I am always thinking Niki was a very subtle scent. I drown in it. Anyone else think it's loud?
    YES! It's one of the few fragrances I love and wear that I'd label a "powerhouse". Others would be Une Rose, Amoureuse, Narcisse Noir and Boucheron.

    This thread puts a smile on my face, because I'm very fond of all of you even though most of your fragrances scare me to death!

  35. #35

    Default Re: Powerhouse Girl Fumes

    I'm thinking as I read these posts that some of us associate "powerhouse" with loud, bold, or strident, whereas others seem to associate "powerhouse" with opulent, rich, or multidimensional. Yes? No?

  36. #36
    Hillaire
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    Default Re: Powerhouse Girl Fumes

    Quote Originally Posted by Evangeline View Post
    I've never found it loud exactly, but something about it seems shrill to me. I haven't tried it in a while so I really shouldn't comment. But I'm surprised that you find Gianfranco Ferre to be a powerhouse - are you talking about the bottle with the crystal hanging from its neck? Now I think of that one as very soft and sort of shyly feminine, almost delicate. I get lots of soft honeysuckle and something powdery like mimosa, but nothing brash or loud (and as bloomy and I discussed above, we also find Lauren and Chloe to be on the softer side unless over-applied.) Could some of these disparate observations simply be a matter of concentration?
    The Gianfranco Ferre problem. So many scents with just one name; that was not that one you mention, rather the one from like 82 in the tall clear bottle. Another loud one from that house was Essence de Eau.


    I think Lauren and Chloe are very very loud, despite being florals. Especially Chloe. Oh, I mean the older Chloe, too. And the older Lauren. The new stuff is just almost not there.

    Speaking of older formulations, Escada was a powerhouse once, and so was Carolina Herrera.
    Last edited by Hillaire; 20th March 2010 at 03:46 AM.

  37. #37
    Hillaire
    Guest

    Default Re: Powerhouse Girl Fumes

    Quote Originally Posted by Leesee View Post
    I'm thinking as I read these posts that some of us associate "powerhouse" with loud, bold, or strident, whereas others seem to associate "powerhouse" with opulent, rich, or multidimensional. Yes? No?
    Good point. The very definition is so subjective.

    I refer to scents I find very strong, in-your-face, bold, and very sillagey. That is my definition.

  38. #38

    Default Re: Powerhouse Girl Fumes

    Quote Originally Posted by Hillaire View Post
    Good point. The very definition is so subjective.

    I refer to scents I find very strong, in-your-face, bold, and very sillagey. That is my definition.
    That would be my definition of "powerhouse" scents too. (which is why Opium is on that list.)
    Actias luna's fragrance reviews | Now blogging with AromiErotici, Carrie Meredith, Mimi Gardenia, Sugandaraja, Asha, bluesoul, shamu1, Redneck Perfumisto and Daly Beauty at Il Mondo di Odore
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  39. #39
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    Default Re: Powerhouse Girl Fumes

    Quote Originally Posted by Hillaire View Post
    Wow! I am always thinking Niki was a very subtle scent. I drown in it. Anyone else think it's loud?
    LOL I was going to say the same thing when you posted Gucci Accenti because that is very subtle on me. LOL

  40. #40

    Default Re: Powerhouse Girl Fumes

    It occurs to me that the most notoriously-sillagey scents just go to ground on me while some innocuous and "mild-mannered" scents REEK. We must have astonishingly unique chemistry!

    (well, I KNOW I'm a mutant, so all is explained. For me, that is.)
    Last edited by actiasluna; 20th March 2010 at 05:09 AM.
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  41. #41

    Default Re: Powerhouse Girl Fumes

    For me, a Powerhouse scent can come from all sorts of atavistic notations...Though it is obviously defined by it's linear meaning Ie; which is "Power"-"House". It is, *From my interpreted source* a scent that isn't overtly intimate and perverse, though something Mediating within its stigma.

    Ie; Bandit is definitely a powerhouse, it stands out, is bold and un-affraid. Should be borne through people with an effete and ilk of being comfertable
    and in-control. Also, as we know, the word "Power" in the sense of it as a verb, it is described as "to inspire; spur; sustain: A strong faith in divine goodness powers his life." and with that in hand, I like to say that that's exactly what a powerhouse must do. It must inspire, aspire and unintentionally subjugate one to go out and buy that fragrance, it pertains power....regardless of a good or bad reaction, it's pugnacious demeanor just evokes attention!

    Well, that's my opinion anyway!

    - Balava -
    - I Want To Appreciate You With My Eyes Closed-

    - Anonymous

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  42. #42

    Default Re: Powerhouse Girl Fumes

    Quote Originally Posted by Haunani View Post
    This thread puts a smile on my face, because I'm very fond of all of you even though most of your fragrances scare me to death!
    And this puts a smile on my face!


    Quote Originally Posted by Leesee View Post
    I'm thinking as I read these posts that some of us associate "powerhouse" with loud, bold, or strident, whereas others seem to associate "powerhouse" with opulent, rich, or multidimensional. Yes? No?
    This makes good sense to me!


    Quote Originally Posted by Hillaire View Post
    The Gianfranco Ferre problem. So many scents with just one name; that was not that one you mention, rather the one from like 82 in the tall clear bottle.

    I think Lauren and Chloe are very very loud, despite being florals. Especially Chloe. Oh, I mean the older Chloe, too. And the older Lauren. The new stuff is just almost not there.

    This is the Gianfranco Ferre I'm referring to - it's from 1984 (I thought that was his first.) Mine is vintage. I was also talking about vintage Lauren and Chloe and how I perceived them in the 80s and still do. They've always been scents I choose when wanting something soft and pretty.

    I think maybe it's also a simple matter of application. Maybe we think of powerhouse scents as those fragrances that people around us commonly over-applied. I personally knew women who wore massive amounts of Giorgio and Opium, but the girls wearing Lauren et al. were probably more demure in their application. Even soft and light scents can leave a mighty sillage if lavished.

  43. #43

    Default Re: Powerhouse Girl Fumes

    Quote Originally Posted by Evangeline View Post
    Even soft and light scents can leave a mighty sillage if lavished.
    Excellent point! I have given myself headaches in the past simply by massively overdoing scents that could still be characterized as soft and light, even when somewhat enthusiastically applied.

  44. #44

    Default Re: Powerhouse Girl Fumes

    Quote Originally Posted by Hillaire View Post
    Well, some newer ones are Soir de Lune and Natori.

    a couple of classics I forgot are Rochas Femme, Rochas Mystere, Rochas Byzance, AMOUAGE GOLD, the original La Prairie, The original Jil Sander Pure, and the original La Perla. BANG!
    Oh yes, I totally agree with these powerhouses!!
    The Chloe is a 'cannot smell them' for me, just like Rive Gauche. Also the Boucheron for most people is a powerhouse, for me it is a very light one!! Strange not?
    The Niki is for me delicate, warm but not IN YOUR FACE!
    Good luck!
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