Perfume Reviews

Reviews by 30 Roses

Total Reviews: 28

Ivy by Demeter Fragrance Library

I tested the roll-on oil, which has zero sillage. I find it grassy/green for the first 10 minutes or so, then it smells like white Dove soap. I rather like it.
25th June, 2019

Tupelo Lemongrass by Thymes

If you are looking for a fresh, simple lemon fragrance that isn't sweet, this fits the bill. As it dries down it smells quite a lot like Eau D'Hadrien did before it was reformulated. I don't smell any tonka. It is certainly unisex.

Be aware that this is only a cologne; it is light, and doesn't project much or last long. This isn't a complicated fragrance, but it is refreshing and highly affordable ($40 for 50mls.)
19th March, 2018 (last edited: 22nd March, 2018)

Lavender by Demeter Fragrance Library

This is the lavender I have been looking for! (I am referring to their regular Lavender cologne, not the "100% Natural".) I like my lavender very simple and true, as though I had merely diluted lavender essential oil. Demeter's lavender doesn't have wood or musk notes to prolong it, so its longevity is low-- expect to have to respray! Nice to spritz on your pillow at night, too. Note that Demeter is now selling 3ml spray samples.
16th August, 2014
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Gingerale by Demeter Fragrance Library

Gingerale captures the brightness and fizz of a newly opened bottle of ginger ale. The dry down is warm, glowing. I didn't get any mustiness. Very mood elevating. This is one of my current favorites, which I never expected of a Demeter.
11th February, 2013

White Lilac & Rhubarb by Jo Malone

White Lilac & Rhubarb is an eminently wearable lilac soliflore cologne. It is fresher, lighter and less sweet/less heady than Highland Lilac of Rochester. I get the impression that I am outdoors and the breeze carries over the scent of lilacs growing nearby-- not just the flowers but also the stems or leaves. The rhubarb note is a bit sharp on application but subsides within about 10 minutes. White Lilac & Rhubarb is an unobtrusive fragrance, yet 5-6 hours later I can still smell it wafting gently up at me from skin and clothing. I'm not a huge fan of Jo Malone generally but this is really nice. Too bad it's a limited edition-- I think it deserves to be part of the permanent collection.
01st March, 2012

Aqua Allegoria Flora Nerolia by Guerlain

I never knew of the existence of the Aqua Allegoria line until long after Flora Nerolia had been discontinued. My curiosity overcame my reluctance to buy blind, and I snagged a tester on eBay. Since then it has been a yearly favorite for cool weather. I find it too heavy for summer use but in winter it is heavenly. The jasmine and orange blossom play off each other beautifully. I don't normally like soapy or indolic fragrances and this is both, yet I love it. The shower cream is also delightful to use.
12th December, 2011

Fleur d'Oranger by Fragonard

I received a sample of this fragrance from Fragonard, decanted it to an atomizer and sprayed it on my arm and chest to test it. I used 5 sprays, but found the projection was lower than average.

Comparing this to other orange blossom fragrances, this is not as green, intense or true as L'Artisan's, not as sweet and linear as VS Orange Flower, not as indolic or citrusy as Jo Malone's.

It starts off with a shot of bergamot and a lemony vibe, leading into neroli. Up close, I get odd whiffs of Windex and bathroom cleaner; I have a strong association with a talc my family used when I was a child (Mavis, which came in a red tin.) I also detect a bit of honey and a clean, laundry-type musk, very light. My daughter thought it smelled of suntan lotion. I think the jasmine contributed to this "beachy" impression. It was still going strong as a powdery skin scent when I finally showered it off after 6 hours.

While I didn't find this unpleasant-- and the smell of Mavis powder was nostalgic-- it is not what I want in an orange blossom fragrance. My husband, smelling it at the 3-hour mark, didn't even recognize that it was an orange blossom fragrance; he is used to smelling the L'Artisan on me.
05th October, 2011

Love's Rain Forest by Love's

Love's Rain Forest is green/aquatic and pleasant enough for the $6.25 sale price I paid today at CVS for the 1.5 oz. spray. Nice to wear in hot weather.

This will never win any awards-- maybe it should really get a neutral rating-- but since I liked it enough to buy it after using the tester, I'm giving it a thumbs up. If you liked B&BW Rainkissed Leaves, you may like Love's Rain Forest.

Note that this is not the same formula as Love's Rain Scent.
20th August, 2011

Violettes de Toulouse by Parfums Berdoues

Violettes de Toulouse is a sweet violet with a raspberry note. I do not find it powdery. The edp is significantly stronger than the edt. Having owned both, I find that I prefer the lighter edt version, which is lovely to spray on sheets or to wear to bed. The edp is better suited to day wear. It is less green than Penhaligon's Violetta, less sweet and candy-like than Annick Goutal's La Violette. The bottle with the bulb atomizer is more decorative than functional (I decanted to a purse atomizer, which produced a finer spray.)
19th May, 2011

Bond No.9 Perfume Oud by Bond No. 9

I tried this on at Saks. It smelled exactly like our toilet bowl cleaner. I had my husband, then my daughter smell it-- they thought the same thing. Hideous.
28th March, 2011

L'Ombre dans L'Eau Eau de Toilette by Diptyque

This has quickly become one of my favorite fragrances. It's quirky, for sure! The first time I smelled it, a fresh tomato leaf smell hit me first, and I wasn't sure how I felt about it in a perfume. Nevertheless, I had to keep sniffing at it-- it drew me in. I loved the combination of Bulgarian rose and black currant leaves and it wasn't long before I had to buy a bottle. For some reason this fragrance especially pleases me on cool, rainy or overcast days; I find it centering. Five stars from me.
26th October, 2010

Coriandre Eau de Toilette by Jean Couturier

Coriandre was my beloved signature fragrance throughout the 1980s, ever since I first smelled it (and immediately bought it) at an airport perfume store in Nairobi. The bottle was a 4 oz. atomizer, $27, and I felt very decadent for spending so much on perfume! (Needless to say, I've come a long way since then!) I was saddened when I smelled the dismal reformulation last year; this excellent fragrance has been ruined. However, as of this writing, the earlier version can still be found in cylindrical 1.1 oz. atomizers, both in small independent perfume shops and on the Web.
06th October, 2010

Jour de Fête by L'Artisan Parfumeur

The first time I smelled this at a L'Artisan boutique, I laughed and said, "Play Doh!" But it called to me, and I had to take home a sample. I found it oddly comforting and my daughter loved it on me. Jour de Fête ended up being the first L'Artisan I bought a full bottle of (and later, a backup bottle, since it's discontinued.)

After many wearings, the association with Play Doh has lessened-- now when I spray this on, I think of the vanilla candy coated Jordan almonds that it's meant to evoke. I like it every bit as much as I did at first. It is not a sophisticated scent, not sexy, just cozy and comforting, perfect for rainy days, for sitting and reading a book with a cup of tea in hand. I like it better than Etro Heliotrope, which is somewhat similar.
27th September, 2010
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Lookin' to Rock Rita by Benefit

I tried this on skin at Sephora recently. The main notes I got from it were fig and coconut, and as such it reminded me of L'Artisan Premier Figuier (which is superior.)

Lookin' To Rock Rita lasted only a couple of hours on me, but they were pleasant hours. Try it if you like figs-- $36 for 1 oz. isn't a bad price.
14th September, 2010

Sécrétions Magnifiques by Etat Libre d'Orange

I really did try this with an open mind, realizing some people liked it. Well, it is vile! Blood, salty milk and iodine. My teenaged daughter took one whiff and declared, "I don't ever want to smell that again." And I have to agree with her.
29th July, 2010

Do Son Eau de Parfum by Diptyque

Disclaimer: I'm not a fan of tuberose. That said, this one bothers me less than some other tuberose perfumes, probably because it's a bit green and has orange blossom in it. I don't like how it turns powdery.

But if you are a tuberose fan, you really should try this one.
13th July, 2010

French Lilac by Pacifica

Definitely try the body butter; I find it more realistic and less grassy than the solid or the spray EdT. The body butter has a strong scent which is quite long lasting; the solid wears much too close to the skin. Four stars for the body butter; 2 for the solid or EdT.

If you are looking for the best lilac perfume, I can't recommend a better one than Highland Lilac of Rochester. I would layer that one with the Pacifica body butter.
06th July, 2010

Armani Privé Ambre Soie by Giorgio Armani

Ambre Soie is not only my favorite of the Armani Privé fragrances, but also my favorite amber. The anise note appeals to me particularly and distinguishes it from other amber perfumes I have smelled. It lacks the food associations of Ambre Narguilé and the heavy vanilla of Ambre Sultan, qualities which make those two less appealing to me. Although Ambre Soie is expensive, a little goes a long way. I will probably never need a second bottle as I do not wear it often compared to my soliflores, but if something happened to this bottle, I would definitely replace it. Thumbs up!
09th June, 2010

Clean Lather by Clean

Pleasant smell of pink Dove soap. I rather liked it.

Edited on 9/10/12:

Due to a discussion thread, today I bought a bar of pink Dove and another of white Dove and actually compared them side by side with Clean Lather.

Pink Dove is fruitier than I remember it-- I don't know if the formula has been tweaked over the years or if my scent memory is off. Clean Lather is closer to the scent of white Dove, but not a perfect match. To my nose, white Dove bar is a bit grassier while Clean Lather is a bit more floral, but they are still quite close.
09th May, 2010 (last edited: 10th September, 2012)

Miel & Citron / Honey & Lemon by L'Occitane

I find the Shimmering limited edition of this scent to be lighter on the vanilla and more citrusy and refreshing. The lemon doesn't last long, but the simple honey note goes on and on. Very nice!
01st May, 2010

Fleur d'Oranger 2007 by L'Artisan Parfumeur

Again and again I turn to my bottle of Fleur d'Oranger 2007. There doesn't seem to be any mood or season that isn't right for this gorgeous EdP. This is happiness in a bottle, and as such it is worth every cent. Unlike some other orange blossom perfumes, this one isn't indolic, spicy, powdery or soapy. The beeswax note is warm and smooth. I have a decant of the 2005 vintage, obtained in a swap, and do not find that it is significantly different, contrary to what I've read.
11th February, 2010 (last edited: 30th April, 2012)

English Rose by Yardley

This is a solidly good, wearable rose fragrance, still available online as of this review. I have received compliments from strangers for this one. I find the longevity quite good-- it lasts most of the day on me. Edit: The pink juice in the tall octagonal bottle is the one to get, if you can find it.
14th December, 2009 (last edited: 20th May, 2015)

Lilac by Demeter Fragrance Library

I will say first of all that the best lilac soliflore I have smelled is not this one, but Highland Lilac of Rochester. [Editing to add that I've changed my tune, and my favorite is now JM White Lilac & Rhubarb.] That said, I find Demeter's Lilac delightful in its own way, as well as being considerably less expensive. This is somewhat sweet without being cloying, and lightly powdery without being old-fashioned. It only lasts about 3 hours on me, but has good sillage and is thoroughly pleasant to wear. It is also the first good experience I've had with Demeter fragrances, which to me have usually seemed like inept caricatures of the scents they seek to portray. Lilac was a welcome exception. Perhaps I'll try a few more Demeters after all.
05th October, 2009 (last edited: 08th July, 2012)

Highland Lilac of Rochester by Highland Lilac of Rochester

Highland Lilac of Rochester is simply the best soliflore lilac I have smelled. If you are in search of a realistic, non-powdery, long lasting lilac scent with good sillage, you owe it to yourself to test this one; the company sells sample vials on its website.
05th October, 2009

Quel Amour! by Annick Goutal

Definitely try the EdP version -- it is richer and rosier than the EdT and the floral notes are better balanced with the fruits. I find it quite wearable and a perfect fragrance for fall/winter, evoking late fall roses and the harvest of late-ripening berries and fruits. In the roses I can smell a similarity with [i]Ce Souir Ou Jamais[/i], which I also enjoy in fall and winter. It has good longevity and sillage.

By contrast, the EdT smells rather like the interior of a gift shop near us which carried an assortment of scented candles-- too much of a hodge-podge of odors and a bit thin in the floral notes.
27th September, 2009

Waikiki Pikake by Pacifica

This works well as a solid perfume. It is long lasting and projects better than one would expect for a solid. It is like a small vacation in the tropics and puts me in a warm-weather frame of mind. Try it, for $9 you can't go wrong.
15th September, 2009

Little Italy by Bond No. 9

Deliciously long-lasting tangerine fragrance. This is a very simple perfume and does not evolve much, but if the smell of tangerine brings back good memories to you, as it does to me, then this is one to try. I notice it also comes in a candle form, which is great if you don't want to wear your tangerines.

I'm editing this to say that Little Italy seems a bit metallic to me. I have to add that I preferred my sample of Il Profumo Mandarine, which is more realistic, although it doesn't last as long.
02nd November, 2008 (last edited: 01st July, 2012)

Ce Soir Ou Jamais by Annick Goutal

This smells to me like a rich rose potpourri. It lasts a long time on me and is one of my favorite fall/winter perfumes.
12th October, 2008