Thursday, August 27, 2015

Review: Keiko Mecheri Peau de Peche

Notes:

sandalwood, powdery notes, orris, musk, white peach, amber, & woody notes


Image from: idealo.de

There is nothing overtly offensive about Peau de Peche. It's fine. I don't mind smelling it on my skin, but it mainly reminds me of a nicely scented shampoo. It is a sparkling, feminine, easy-breezy peach. I found myself uninspired by it, perhaps because the person that I imagine smelling like this is so far removed from the person that I am. The woman whose pores ooze of this scent? Delicate, with milky, freckled skin and strawberry blonde hair. She's sweet as pie and never says a curse word. I am not those things. 

Peau de Peche begins with a juicy peach, and it only acquires a slight warmth and depth just before it starts to fade away completely (which doesn't take long). The overall, standout vibe is soapy peach. There's really not an awful lot more to say about this scent. It's quite simplistic and straight forward. There is a time and place for a modestly pleasant perfume like this. Peach note lovers will likely rejoice in Peau de Peche. And hey, I'd probably stare — mesmerized —  by the woman above who smells this way. I'd certainly ask her what shampoo she uses.

Peau de Peche EDP is $140 for a 75ml bottle, it was created by Keiko Mecheri

Longevity: 1/5
Projection: 1/5

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Sample Mail: Alice & the Magician

Alice & the Magician create edible fragrance, I won't say much more, as I'm planning a write up soon. Aaron was kind enough to send me six 10ml bottles to sniff out. They smell delicious and authentic. Like I said, I won't say much here, but I will say that 'Chocolate Birthday Cake' smells exactly like a bowl full of chocolate cake mix *insert heart eyes emoji*. Stay tuned for a full brand overview!




DISCLOSURE: product provided for consideration by Alice & the Magician, opinions are my own

Sunday, August 23, 2015

Review: L'Artisan Parfumeur Dzing!

"A true L’Artisan Parfumeur icon. This shockingly unique fragrance, created by Olivia Giacobetti, Dzing! is a magical evocation of a circus of dreams and imagination. Everything is soft hued and slow moving, sights and sounds rolling by in the Big Top. Everything is there, the scent of saddle leather as pretty girls on horses canter by, sawdust, the rosin on the acrobats’ hands as they arc through the air, black panther fur, fire-eaters and gasoline, the vintage canvas overhead, the caramel scent of candyfloss and toffee apples. The circus as conceived by L’Artisan Parfumeur, comforting but contrasted with the occasional roar tearing through the night."

Notes:

leather, ginger, tonka bean, musk, white woods, caramel, saffron, toffee, candy apple, & cotton candy






I find a strange pleasure in the weird, creeptastic stylings of a vintage circus, however, I'm in total opposition of circus attendance. That fact aside, Dzing! does capture the essence of a circus (or carnival) pretty damn spectacularly. The description from L'Artisan themselves is accurate. This is absolutely one of the most interesting and delightful fragrances in my collection. I enjoy leather in small doses, and Dzing! hits the spot. With each spray, my nose and wrist seem to gain a stronger magnetic connection. Do you think I'd get strange glances if my arm looks like a permanent extension of my face? Ah well.

With the snap of a leathery whip, Dzing! begins its performance strong and confident. As the leather whip pulls back, this juice becomes very redolent of a petting zoo. It has the same oddly sweet manure aroma that you'd find in a barn. Never fear. It's charming, I swear. However, I did grow up in an itty bitty country town, where the air was permanently laced with the scent of cow dung from the spring to early fall. Nostalgia aside, I feel that this poo component is one that provides just enough stank, never too much. Before you start wondering why you'd spray farm animal excrements on your skin, it evolves.

Soon, the leather softens, while simultaneously taking on a bright and sparkling aspect, the fecal quality dulls, and suddenly Dzing! takes a turn for the sweet. It is as delightful as a brightly colored merry-go-round. Dzing! is a circus performer in a leather-laden getup that has been permanently infiltrated by the sweet smells of carnival goodies; caramel-dipped apples, funnel cake, cotton candy. The grooves of their boots are packed with elephant defecation. Their skin manages to retain a quiet and clean musk.

I find that Dzing! is not a brilliant choice for hot and muggy weather, which seems to coax out the manure aroma in an unpleasant way. Stick to cool weather wear and this circus act won't let you down. If you're craving some fantasically freakish circus lunacy in another way, check out The Last Circus.




Dzing! EDT retails for $145 for a 100ml bottle (can be found cheaper), the nose behind this fragrance is Olivia Giacobetti

Longevity: 3/5
Projection: 2/5




Friday, August 21, 2015

Sample Mail: En Voyage Perfumes

I finally got my nose on some En Voyage!




Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Brand Overview: Pinrose


Pinrose is a relatively new fragrance venture founded by Erika Shumate and Christine Luby in San Francisco. Inspiration for Pinrose came from a desire to simplify the fragrance-shopping experience. They operate on the premise that perfume should be as multi-dimensional as the women who wear them; why have only one signature scent?

Pinrose currently offer 10 perfumes (3 past perfumes & an online exclusive scent also exist), which are available in 1oz bottles or as a petal — a sachet which includes one perfume-soaked wipe; nice for travel. A full set of petal packets retails for $24, and a 1oz bottle of perfume retails for $55.

The brand presentation is youthful and fun. The website functions with ease and has an energetic vibe. Upon arrival at the Pinrose website, you'll be prompted to take a synesthetic quiz which will take you through various colors, textures, photos, shapes, and sounds. Once completed, you'll be given a profile, with a few scent suggestions. This quiz function will also be available in store, on iPads; launching at Nordstrom in September 2015.


"Fragrance is best experienced when it is collected & varied."


Garden Gangster: Zest up the party with this invigorating and fresh citrus blend. Perfect for dominating lawn sports and tennis courts.

Notes: bergamot, lime, mandarin

Merry Maker: Radiate sunshine with this refreshing nectarine blend. Best worn when you need an extra skip in your step.

Notes: nectarine, plum, tonka bean
Pinrose: Captivate the crowd with this unexpected rose and leather blend. Perfect for tap-dancing your way to lucky breaks.

Notes: rose, clove, labdanum


Moonlight Gypsy: Conjure up some mystery with the enchanting notes of cardamom and orange blossom. Perfect for solstice parties in the forest.

Notes: cardamom, orange blossom, sandalwood
Treehouse Royal: Take on the day confidently with this elegant mix of fig and moss. Best worn when reigning with style and grace.

Notes: fig, jasmine, moss

Tambourine Dreamer: Exude effortless elegance with this avant-garde bouquet of white lily. Perfect for vineyard picnics and bottomless brunches.

Notes: ylang-ylang, lily of the valley, white musk

Cuddle Punk: Get cozy with this playful mashup of apricot and vanilla. Perfect for pillow fights and love bites. 

Notes: apricot, vanilla, cypress


Pillowtalk Poet: Slip into this fresh laundry mix of powder and musk. Perfect for days in bed when sweet nothings mean everything.

Notes: powder, amber, musk


Secret Genius: Melt hearts with this romantic blend of vanilla and caramel. Perfect for hatching plans and sneaking kisses.

Notes: vanilla, cedarwood, white chocolate


Campfire Rebel: Spice up any adventure with burning oud wood and vanilla bourbon. Perfect for sipping whiskey in the woods after the rest of the tent has gone to bed. 

Notes: whiskey, burning oud, vetiver


Pinrose perfumes are easy to wear and relatively light, making them a nice choice for young women who are new to the world of perfume, or for those who are craving something light and fun. The composition of all those that I've tried are simplistic and pleasantly blended. They've reached beyond the typical fruity-floral concoctions that are often marketed to young women, and managed to play with some of the more interesting and complex notes; they've done a nice job incorporating those notes into their offerings with a minimalistic hand.

Pinrose presents their use of a quiz and iPads at the point of sale, and the "try before you buy" philosophy as innovative, which is a bit misleading, as many companies (perfume brands or otherwise) have similar approaches. Regardless, I had fun taking the quiz and trying their scents. They certainly speak to a specific audience, which seems to be girls and young women (I noticed some of their scents being sold at Forever21 and Urban Outfitters, which sort of solidifies that). A person who has been sniffing around the world of perfume for several years may not find the Pinrose offerings challenging or intriguing enough to hold their attention.

I would have been absolutely smitten with a company like Pinrose when I was in middle school. And I do agree — as I'm sure most fragrance enthusiasts will — with their philosophy that fragrance is best experienced when collected and varied. Also, their notion that one should not have a signature scent is sort of in juxtaposition with the stereotypical Millennial (and Gen Z) as a whole; always looking for the next new and exciting thing, never fully committed to one thing. Overall, Pinrose is a fun choice for its target audience. They have lively, appealing packaging, and varied, uncomplicated scents.

Which do I find most interesting? Treehouse Royal (because fig, duh),  Moonlight Gypsy, & Campfire Rebel.


DISCLOSURE: product provided by Pinrose, images are from pinrose.com, scent descriptions & notes also from pinrose.com, opinions are my own


Review: Byredo Pulp

Notes:

bergamot, cardamom, black currant, fig, red apple, tiare flower, cedar, praline, & peach blossom


Image from: byredo.com

Byredo has quickly become one of my favorite houses; beautiful, modern, and minimalistic. But Pulp is a little challenging, and opinions are starkly divided. Some folks smell a pleasant fruity-floral scent, while others smell rotting fruit salad. It certainly is unique. My perspective? The top is an effluvial burst of extremely pulpy, warm (verging on spoiled) orange juice that has been sitting on the kitchen counter for two days, with a small bowl of black currants sitting next to it. Very citric, sour, and nose-crinklingly tangy. Did I run to the sink to scrub my arm off with a Brillo pad? Au contraire mon ami. It was interesting enough that I wanted to continue smelling it…for science.

Eventually, mom comes home and dumps the spoiled glass of OJ into the sink; the smell of fermenting pulp starts to dissipate. The strange and slightly obnoxious top notes are challenged by their less offensive counterparts, all of which are near impossible to decipher individually (I suppose the apple is perceptible). Just know that there is a notable, subtle sweetening and grounding quality that is gained. At this stage, I really don't mind Pulp. I actually sort of like it. Unfortunately, soon after it's tamed it becomes a (albeit charming and likable) freshly-showered-with-fruity-shower-gel skin scent. Such a shame for something that begins so strong and loud. Pulp is certainly a scent that you need to try before buying, as demonstrated by the polarizing reviews.

Byredo Pulp retails for $110-220

Longevity: 2/5
Projection: 1/5

Sunday, August 16, 2015

Review: Imaginary Authors Yesterday Haze

Imaginary Authors' fragrances already come with their own endearing fictional author and story (which you can read here), but part of my enjoyment in writing about fragrance is the imagery I gain from personally experiencing a scent, and in turn, telling that story to you. With that being said, Yesterday Haze is the scent of a post-apocalyptic world. You may be thinking that this assessment is rather pessimistic. But here me out (I'm not here to bum you out!). Regardless of any unpleasantries that come with a fictional, post-apocalyptic world, there is beauty within it; as with all things. These beautiful moments, suspended within the doom of a post-apocalyptic world, would be scented by Yesterday Haze; a fragrance which is most captivating in sneaky, subtle wafts from warm skin.


Notes:

fig, iris, cream, tonka, tree bark, walnut bitters, & orchard dust




It's been two and a half years since the world ended. Your hair is filthy, sprinkled with remnants of tree bark, as you emerge from the woods to enter a (once pristine) abandoned home. Furniture is dulled by a gloomy mantle of dust. In the kitchen you find a sealed bag of dried fig fruit and an unopened can of whipped cream; three years ago, this wouldn't have been such a treat. Dishes in the cabinets are immaculate, providing an eerie sense of nostalgia. You retrieve a plate, adorn it with your fig fruit and whipped cream prize. Pretending — if only briefly — that life is as it once was. You pull out a kitchen chair, blow away the blanket of comfortably resting dust from the surface of a wooden tabletop, and sit to enjoy your treat. Beams of light, which pour in through the windows from the desolate world, provide a hazy spotlight for breath-swept particles to put on a show… 

Yesterday Haze is some robust stuff. As I cut into a newly-received box, I could already smell its aroma radiating from the peanut shell bedding. Lucky for me, the scent was well contained within its shipping box, otherwise my mailman may have kept this for himself. This explodes with a brusque, iris-rubbed wood. Shortly after, a gregariously sweet and creamy fig glazes over the wood, offering a timely and complimentary companionship. It resides here for a significant amount of time, eventually adopting a dusty (and slightly bitter) walnut undercurrent. The dusty essence is mainly perceived in close quarters and — much like a warm embrace — is better felt than explained. I can only say that it is as satisfying as blowing the dust from an old book (or perhaps watching someone blow the dust from an old book, because, sneezing). 

If you were unsure in reading about Yesterday Haze, yes, it is a fig-centric juice. But don't pass this off as "just another fig fragrance," the elements that accompany the fig are what make it unique. During wear, this fragrance provides a strong presence. It makes sure you know that it's there, and I feel it, even when I'm not thoughtfully sniffing it out. But it's not too heavy, or suffocating. It would be a solid choice for the impending early autumn days; the air turning cool and crisp, but the asphalt still radiating with heat haze. Give Yesterday Haze a sniff if you're into fig fragrances, but your olfactory system is urging you to try something new.

… After a long day of searching for food and materials and celebrating your lucky treat, you emerge from the other side of the woods. Your hair is still full of tree bark, and your skin is veiled with ashen dust. You settle in under a night sky, which has every opportunity to express its little balls of luminous gas, no longer drowned out by the pollution of city lights. The world, quieter than you'd ever imagined, free from the constant hum of electrical sources that you'd never consciously acknowledged. You're no longer able to drown out your own thoughts with the noise of endless information via handheld devices, instead you pull out a scavenged book written by Lenora Blumburg and dream of a different time.




Yesterday Haze EDP retails at $85 for a 60ml bottle, the creator is Josh Meyer

Longevity: 4/5
Projection: 3/5

Friday, August 14, 2015

Four Fantastic Fall Fragrances (say that four times fast!)

Yesterday, here in Brooklyn, I stepped outside and could immediately feel an inkling of autumn air. It's been one hell of a hot summer, so when US Fragrance Club asked me for my fall fragrance choices, I happily obliged. Read about my picks here: 






"Delicious autumn! My very soul is wedded to it. And if I were a bird, I would fly about the earth seeking the successive autumns."-George Eliot

Thursday, August 13, 2015

Sample Mail: Pinrose

Brand write-up for Pinrose will be coming soon!




www.pinrose.com

DISCLOSURE: petals provided by Pinrose

Review: Guerlain Mon Precieux Nectar

Notes:

petit grain, bitter almond, orange blossom, jasmine, sandalwood, gaiac wood, vanilla, white musks, & frankincense

Subtle, sweet, enveloping.
Image from: guerlain.com


Bzzzzzzzzz. A very cosmopolitan Queen Bee would take up rulership in a ritzy bee town, with streams of glorious, sweet, pale yellow liquid running throughout. She'd rule worker bees to secure their high-class bee town with walls of thick honeycomb, tossing them in little bee prison cells if they dare take one sip from her precious nectar streams. Oh little worker bees, they've had enough. One day, they'd overthrow their nectar-lush of a queen and bzzzzzzz all the way to Thierry Wasser's home. Bzzzz, bzzz, bzz-ing in his ear. "Follow us," they'd say. "We've got your next work of art."

There are not enough descriptive words in the english dictionary that could accurately portray the beauty that exudes from this exquisite aroma. This perfume simply exists in a way that requires no words; but imma give you a few anyway, because that's how I do. Take another peek at the note list, you will see no honey listed. However, the notes have been combined in such a way that they give the illusion of a stem-full of orange blossom flowers, dripping with thick, golden honey.

Some fragrances crave and plead to be doted on, so I run their aroma through my olfactory system, and kick out words through my fingertips. I love that process. And honestly, in the case of Mon Precieux Nectar, I could take you on a verbose adventure which details the comings and goings of each note, but it'd all be pretend. What you see is what you get, errrr, what you spray is what you smell. From beginning to end. Stunning. Honeyed orange blossom. Sophisticated marzipan. Luxurious milk bath.


CAUTION: Wear outdoors at your own risk. Bzzzzzzzzzzzzzz… 


Mon Precieux Nectar retails at $280 for a 125ml bottle, the creator is Thierry Wasser

Longevity: 3/5
Projection: 2/5

WEAR THIS: to feel like an actual bee, spring, summer, but not (under any circumstances) to a garden

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Brand Rave: Olfactif

In the past few months, I've tinkered with various sample subscriptions. Olfactif's presentation captured my attention the moment I tore into the box. I favor simple and minimalistic design, as you could probably tell by the look of my own site. This is right up my alley; so chic and beautiful.







Monday, August 10, 2015

Sample Mail: CJ Scents

Today I received my CJ Scents sample order: 

Sandalwood Fig, Lemonilla, So Coconut, Harmony, Sunny Lemonade, Cherry Almond, Sandalwood, & Lilac Dream

Of the eight samples I received today, I'm loving Sandalwood Fig & Lemonilla. Yum!


www.cjscents.com

Thursday, August 6, 2015

Review: Huitieme Art Parfums Poudre de Riz EDP

Powdery notes, and notes that portray a powdery essence, have long been a source of olfactive ecstasy for me. I have to wonder if my mother over-powdered me as a child. I'll probably die in some powder-induced trance, following its fluffy scent trail. I can see the headlines now: 'In Hypnotic State, Woman Follows Scent of Powder Off Cliff.' Witnesses would say that I was drooling from the mouth and mumbling about talc. Yes, it's that serious. Enter Poudre de Riz. The moment I sampled it, I knew that a bottle would be mine. Just look at this note list...

Notes:

damask rose, tiare absolute, coconut milk, vanilla, rice powder accord (caramelic, burnt toast and maple notes), sandalwood, iris, cedar, tonka bean, tolu balsam, & benzoin resin


"The air in the closed room was heavy with a mixture of odours: soap, face powder, the pungent scent of cologne". -Henri Barbusse, The Inferno, 1908

"This is the phrase from a novel by Henri Barbusse that inspired "Poudre de Riz", a fragrance for a deliciously amber embrace: the old-fashioned charm of an accord of 'Poudre de Riz' tinged with Rose Petals and the timeless sensuality of a Monoï infused with Vanilla Pods."



Poudre de Riz glides out of her cute 1950's home and through her white picket fence with a bouquet of sweetened roses, a pyrex dish of rice desert, and an iris bloom tucked behind her ear. Her lips are camouflaged with a perfectly applied, rosy lipstick. Coty's Airspun powder gives her a porcelain, cherub appearance from afar. She wears a baby-pink dress, belted with an ivory ribbon. Surely those at the dinner party will delight in her arrival.

The onset of rosiness in this cherubic babe fades into the backdrop rather quickly. The sweetness in Poudre de Riz builds in intensity during the first hour of wear, but it always plays as the seasoning on a powdery platter. The layers of sweet notes are no surprise, a glance at the note list is enough to put you into sugar shock. Initially, a caramel-y, vanillic, coconut milk is poured over a bed of sweetened rice, and adorned with a waxy tiare petal. And then…well…you've seen the note composition…all the tiers of sweetness meld so well, that I'd be lying to you if I said I distinctly smell each of them as they happen.

As it reaches its destination, it is no longer supplemented by more and more and more sweetness. Aptly laying off just before your teeth have the opportunity to ache. The overall vibe remains (sweet, fluffy, rice powder), but eventually, the saccharine-esque aggression is blunted by the addition of a mellow wood. It is here that it settles into its sophisticated groundwork. Long gone are the little girl's Love's Baby Soft, this is powder for a woman (but I still enjoy a good dousing of Baby Soft every now and then).

There is not a single moment during the Poudre de Riz experience that doesn't make me feel as though I'm floating on an actual cloud. With each inhalation, my head might as well be detached from my body, floating away with a gaggle of pastel-colored, helium-filled balloons. If Poudre de Riz were a color, it'd be ivory, or light pink. For this reason, I like it best while wearing something dark, with a vibe of badassery; black skinny jeans, heels, a leather jacket. Because contradictions are fun. The presentation has a similar feel: a fluffy, powdery, pastel dream, encased by a dark, heavy, matte bottle.

I could easily be lured to my death by the scent of Poudre de Riz. This juice has got all the charm of Ted Bundy. In wearing it, a subtle flick of the wind will have strangers in your trail breathing in your scent, and left to think about you for days. So, if a powdery aroma is what you fancy, you'd be hard pressed to find one which is more adorable or luxurious than this (and you might just find yourself craving a bowl of rice pudding as your skin soaks it in).





Poudre de Riz retails at $125 for a 50ml bottle, the fragrance was created by Pierre Guillaume

Longevity: 4/5
Projection: 3/5

Monday, August 3, 2015

Unboxing: Kiehl's Original Musk EDT

Notes:

orange blossom, bergamot, lily, neroli, ylang-ylang, rose, tonka bean, musk, & patchouli

I ordered this blind, and it popped up in the mail today. So, PHOTOSHOOT. I purchased from net-a-porter; their packaging and presentation are gorge. After I've spent some time with Original Musk, I'll let you know what I think. In the meantime, let me know what you think if you've tried this one. Without further ado...