I'm nearly 40 and female
For the last few years, my favourite frag has been JPG classique EDT (not EDP, can't stand that). However lately I've been finding it a little heavy and am looking for something lighter. I don't like the summer versions either, I tried the 2012 version and while ok to start with, it's just not right.
I also like Prada Infusions D'Iris - this time in EDP form. I'm surprised by this as I usually find EDP too strong and sets off asthma or gives me a headache. I initially bought the edt but quickly realised the EDP is the one for me. However I find it doesn't last all that long on me - better on clothes than my skin. I tend to spritz only in the morning. The opening smell really isn't as important as the long lasting dry down scent for me.
I also thought I liked Estée Lauder Sensuous Nude EDT, it seems great when its cold outside but I brought it away to Mexico with me on holiday and can't be doing with the coconut smell here - it just smells like sun cream to me right now!
So in a couple of days, iI'll be in duty free and wondered what you might recommend I try. I really want to like Chanel, but so far all I have tried are ok to start with and then they start to all smell of something I don't like. I'm not sure what that is - is it aldehydes? It's kinda "old lady" to me and I don't want that.
Any advice gratefully received. I'm not necessarily looking for one fragrance, maybe I need more than one to suit the weather or my mood.
Oh yes, my favourite men's fragrance that I absolutely adore (and have been tempted to wear myself but have held off as I make my husband wear it!) is L'Homme by Roger & Gallet. I never smell it on anyone but my hubby although I suspect that may change as its now being stocked by Mark's & Spencer :-(
I want a perfume for myself that is not worn by millions of people, like the Classique is. I don't mind if its expensive as that helps reduce the number of people wearing it! But it does have to be reasonably easy to obtain in the uk so I'm maybe not looking for a completely niche perfume.
I am drawn to Annick Goutal after reading this site but I'm not really sure why. Nor which one. I've never smelt any of them as far as I'm aware!
Any advice gratefully received
Perhaps Sables by Annick Goutal is one to explore as you express an interest in that house.
Bond No. 9 Madison Square Park
Goutal seems like a brand you might like. They tend to be light, floral, and natural smelling. However, in general, they are a little on the light side, that is, they don't last too long. That said, you could try things like Songes (jasmine), Grand Amour (floral), and Heure exquise (iris). I like the abovementioned Sables too, but it is quite different, it is based on immortelle, which smells like caramel, burnt sugar, and spices, very striking and extremely long lasting-not sure it's what you're looking for.
In other brands, I'm thinking the easy to find Kenzo Flower, which smells floral with a touch of melon, a touch of sweetness but not too much, and with good persistence.
I assume you don't live in London, because if you did and had money to spare, you could stop by Ormonde Jayne. It's very niche, very exclusive, and high quality (expensive too).
Some great ideas so far. Another house worth considering is L'Artisan Parfumeur. My wife wears their Safran Troublant and Nuit de Tubereuse. Both do a great job being adult without being old-fashioned, and at being fun and interesting without being teenager and bubblegum-y. I also thought of them because each reminds me of part of Classique: Safran Troublant has the warm cozy vanilla, and Nuit de Tubereuse has the kind of sharp modern edge.
In the duty free, I might say check out the Guerlains. The Acqua Allegoria line in particular has some really lovely light scents, and they're reasonably priced.
For some reason I also think you should smell Bulgari Black. Hard to find to smell in the UK, though (though cheap on CheapSmells). You can sometimes find it in foreign airports.
I don't think I've ever seen Goutal in the airport, but you may be able to find it in your local major department store. In London you can buy it in Selfridges and Les Senteurs - and LS will make you samples if you come in (free) or order them online (about £5 each, I think).
I think L'artisan and Goutal are the two houses you should definitely explore I depth.
Thanks for all the suggestions
I had Bulgari Black and Kenzo Flower on my list to try already so it's good to hear someone else say those. I will also look out for Guerlain whilst in the duty free.
L'artisan is not one that I've heard of so I will do some reading about that one.
As a compete newbie to this, is there a better way to get hold of samples of these less mainstream fragrances than eBay? I don't live in London, I'm in Leicester...
GUCCI PREMIERE EDP (Floral and fresh)
VICTOR & ROLF FLOWERBOMB (this one is floral and sweet)
both are easy on the nose I would say.
http://www.basenotes.net/threads/310...ch-high-prices it starts off generally, but lower down they talk about a couple of companies that do samples by mail for the UK.
And here http://www.basenotes.net/threads/205...ng-Birmingham-) they say the House of Fraser store in Birmingham is great, with helpful, non-pushy staff, and they carry Annick Goutal and L'Artisan. Not exactly across the street, but closer than London. (That thread is from 2008, tho', but hopefully not too out of date.)
"What is this secret connection between the soul, and sea, clouds and perfumes? The soul itself appears to be sea, cloud and perfume..." - from Zorba the Greek by Nikos Kazantzakis.
Thanks for all the help, I will see what I can find and will let you know what I come up with
One indirect way to sample many things is to keep each paper strip in a small ziploc bag, like those for medicines. This way, the scent keeps for several days, enough to revisit it and form an opinion. remember to write the name of scent on the strip, in pencil (not pen, it will smudge), or you'll forget what was what. So if you happen near a store or by chance go to London, make the point to stop in a store and spray a bit.
My wife wears TF Black Orchid. It might be worth a try.
Have fun and come back and tell us what you liked!
So a quick update.
Went to duty free in Cancun and wandered around rather a lot. I went armed with a bunch of fragrances I wanted to try. I knew I wouldn't find them all, or in fact most, but it was a worth a try!
So, I tried to be sensible and got papers and started spraying... Bvlgari Black, Bvlgari BLV, Thierry Mugler Angel, KenzoFlower, V&R SpiceBomb... Wanted to try Flowerbomb but for some reason they didn't have a tester of that.
So what happened? I started to not be able to discern the differences between the papers I was clutching. I wandered away to let them dry down and my nose just lost it! Some chap gave me a spray of something he didn't tell me what it was that I quite liked, so I had to track him down and find out. Turns out it was Yves Saint Laurent Manifesto. I let him spray it on my arm - he went mental with it! I was only expecting one spritz. But I liked it so it was ok.
I really liked the V&R spicebomb but it's sooo masculine, I had to try that on my skin to see what happens. Still not really sure - still liking the smell, just not sure I want to wear it.
I fairly quickly discarded KenzoFlower - far too flowery for me! I also ditched TM Angel too. I'm not sure why, it just wasn't doing anything for me. In the end, as I said above, the papers were doing my head in, so I ended up just throwing them all away.
On my way to the departure gate, I had one forearm smelling of Manifesto, one of SpiceBomb. Then there was another perfume section! So I decided to put a couple of other things on my skin to see what happened and promptly forgot about them. One that I did without knowing what it was or anything at all really, was Narciso Rodriguez Eau de Musc, which I really liked on first sniff.
I never really smelt that again either because I put a jumper on and it was sprayed at the top of my arm. I was busy wondering if there was a cross between Manifesto and Spicebomb as the combination was kinda nice when I got a whiff of something else. I forgot that I'd sprayed some Bvlgari Black on the back of my hand and it turns out that the dry down of that is gorgeous! I couldn't stop smelling my hand!
So today, I have ordered a small bottle of it from Cheapsmells
But I'm not done yet. I want to find some Annick Goutal, I'm going to Boots shortly to try the Narciso eau de musc again as it's on offer in there. I still can't decided whether to buy SpiceBomb, I really need to find FlowerBomb (although I worry it's going to be like KenzoFlower which I really hated)...
I also fancy trying Serge Lutens Un Bois Vanille (or any others you would recommend) and I think I have to try Manifesto again.
So it's all still highly confusing, but I realise now that I have to try them on my skin for it to make any sense whatsoever, those paper ribbons are pretty useless!
Went to the airport wearing Bulgari Black, my favourite non office scent for the colder seasons. On my WTB-list was Chanel pour Monsieur and I went to the duty free. Sprayed the Chanel on my right arm and Guerlain Mitsouko on my left. Went back to the Chanel and Dior fragrances to sample Eau Savage for comparison when a sales assistant offered me to try Chanel Coco. I mentioned Chanel 19 and Eau Savage as some of my favourites (I prefer citrus/green/chypre frags) and she accepted that Coco might be the wrong category.
Left the shop for about an hour, waiting for my flight while repeatedly checking the Chanel. Finally I decided to buy it.
Later in the airplain something smelled really good and very different from Mitsouko. Checked the Chanel arm - good but not the scent that hit my nose. Checked my jumper and there it was: the drydown of Bulgari Black!
Hope you will enjoy it!
One that hasn't been mentioned is "Midnight in Paris" by Van Cleef & Arpels. If that Bulgari Black turns out to be not exactly what you remember, try Midnight in Paris, because they're very similar. It's just that the Midnight in Paris is one step more "traditional" smelling than the "Black", and for some people that one step away from the (very interesting!) weirdness of "Black" does the trick.
And good luck with the Manifesto. I saw one review that said you'd like Manifesto if you liked Flowerbomb, so it sounds like you're quite on the right track with that as well.
Thanks for reporting back!
The Bvlgari Black arrived and it is definitely weird. For the first couple of hours, I'm not sure I like it, but the dry down is still great! I found Flowerbomb to try and it turns out that I like that A LOT. And just to contrast, another one I like a lot is Serge Lutens Un Bois Vanille. Hubby doesn't seem to like that one much, but I really do, so he might just have to put up with it!
I got a sample of Tom Ford Black Orchid and whilst I like the smell of the bottle, on me it's way too "perfumey". I've been putting up with it all day but I can't stand it! It has that "thing" whatever it is that gets in the back of my throat, sets off asthma and is what has kept me away from perfume all these years. I still don't know what this "thing" is, but I find a lot of Chanel has it too (which is a shame cos I really wanted to own and like a Chanel). Not holding out much hope for White Patchouli which I also ordered.
Manifesto - I got some samples from the nice lady on the Yves Saint Laurent counter at boots but have yet to try them properly - I was too excited to try the Serge and TF frags but will try it again soon.
Well, I've worked out why I wasn't sure about Black. It's all about the smoke for me. All I can smell is smoke. And as an ex-smoker of 6 months, I don't like it, it's driving me nuts! I'm wearing it today but I now don't feel that I will ever wear it again. It just makes me want to have a cigarette. And I really DON'T want a cigarette!
YSL Manifesto I've tried too. It seems too sickly sweet and very very familiar now I've tried it on it's own. I'm not sure what it smells like, but it's definitely something I've smelt before. Not what I'm looking for.
I'm still really liking Flowerbomb but am slightly concerned that it's a bit "mainstream" - like the Classique - and that I'll end up smelling like everyone else. I really want to find a scent that's not so mainstream. I also tried Gucci Premiere, just on paper and quite liked that, but again, it's too "normal"
I wanted to like Narciso Rodriguez For Her and although my husband seemed to like it, there's something about it that I wasn't sure about. Wasn't sweet enough for me I don't think.
I really like Serge Lutens Un Bois Vanille, but it's too coconutty for my husband, so I need to try to find a more "fruity" or flowery version. If anyone knows where I may be able to get hold of some samples of SL other than Ebay in the UK, I'd appreciate it.
I do now know that I don't like old fashioned strong "traditional" perfumes, which may make finding a niche perfume for me rather more difficult.
I still haven't found any Annick Goutal or L'artisan Perfumeur to sample. I don't even know where to start.