Friday, July 02, 2010

Aftelier Site Re-Launch And Special Contest-Giveaway

Natural Perfumer Mandy Aftel has redesigned and overhauled her website, I've spent more time than I care to admit exploring the products and wealth of information she offers about natural perfumes and essences and entertained a little fantasy about commissioning a bespoke perfume. Up until now I was only familiar with the Aftelier scents that are sold at Henri Bendel (my favorites have always been Tango and Fig, but I also have a serious thing for Cacao). But now I've been reading about the EDP formulation, the bath and body line and  the chef essences- yes, scents for food by a celebrated perfumer. I've been taking mental notes that can be summed as "want! want! WANT! NEED!".

Now Mandy is offering one of The Non-Blonde readers a mini perfume of  their choice (excluding Parfum Prive). To enter the contest you will need to visit and then come back here to leave a comment that answers the first two questions and optionally the third one:

1. Have you tried any of of Aftelier creations? If not, which one(s) interest you most?
2. What is the ingredient in the center of Parfum Privé?
3. (Optional) What content/features would you like to see added to the Aftelier site? What would make visiting it a better experience?

The contest will remain open until Wednesday, July 7th.

Photo of Mandy Aftel at her perfume organ from the website.

*Disclaimer and clarification: I'm not affiliated with Aftelier and have no commercial interest in this giveaway in any way, shape or form. But you knew that, right?


  1. 1. I've never tried Aftelier creations but I very much want to try the Fig perfume and Parfum de Maroc. They sound wonderful.

    2. ambergris!

    3. The site is easy to navigate, the only thing that could be added possibly would be reviews for each perfume.

  2. 1. Yes, I own a mini of Parfum de Maroc, which is glorious! I'd like to try Cepes and Tuberose next...or maybe Tango?

    2. Ambergris

    3. Um, I don't know - I'm terribly unconcerned with aesthetics, and it looks great to me! As long as it's easy to find things and navigate, I'm happy!

  3. 1. I'm a fig fan and shares your passion for this note, so this would be my first choice.
    2. Ambergris. I think this one would be my second choice.
    3. The site map is especially helpful. It's like a checklist for me to see I didn't miss a single thing.

    Sarah from PA

  4. Hello Gaia,
    Oooo a Aftelier mini?

    I'm in.

    1. Well I've tried Tango, with it's smoked shells, was very interesting, almost sexy to me in a beachy way where there is no sweetness or coconut vibe. Think Cast Away with Tom Hanks. (Love that movie!)
    I've also tried Cepes. Another version of sexy but not in a worldy way, it's earthy and moist, makes me huff my wrist, I wish I could spray it on wildly.
    And then Cacao - now this one was too sweet on me , it turned to Orange Tootsie Lollipops. Not what I was going for, it's nice just not my idea of what I want in a sweet scent.
    What I long to get my nose in is her Fig perfume as I've heard it told that it really plays along with the fir absolutes in it which I love. I adore foresty scents. I want to try her Fir solid perfume with the Rose one.
    I bet it's heaven.
    Velvet & Sweet Pea's Fir-Ever Young is a favorite of mine.
    So anything close to Laurie's masterpiece is gotta be had by me!

    2.In all honesty I was going to say Ambrette seed.
    You did say center no?
    I took that to mean the heart of the fragrance but I must be a dummy, of course it's ambergris.

    3. I doubt Mandy can do this but I do wish her samples were bigger.
    I would even pay more to have them so. Sometimes I just need more of it to get a true sense of what it is I'm smelling and if I truly will purchase it. I realize it can't be done because the ingrediants are so expensive..but really that's all I wish she would do.
    Her site looks great. I plan on buying something as soon as I can.

    Truly, Tamara Jackson
    [email protected]

  5. 1-I've tried several and love the eau de parfums Fig and Ambre (and I'm not an Amber fan), and Maroc in any form. I haven't tried the Parfum Prive, but, would love to. Since it's unlikely that is included in the giveaway, a mini of Maroc would excite me no end!


    3-Her new site looks great. Here are a few suggestions:
    a.what size or how many applications in the samples? (tea w/frankincense sounds fascinating).I see the little bottles at the bottom of the pg which look like apply to perfumes - but what about tea, and body products, etc?

    b.i would like to see what the gift certificate looks like.

    c.when you click on her logo, it takes you to one Store entry, when you click on the "store" link (upper right) it takes you to a different Store entry. This isn't really a problem, but, it seems redundant and possibly a little confusing.

    Maybe the logo should take you to a Home page that lets you navigate to the store, etc..

    Images: (Beautiful!). the size of the image when you click on her logo is good - it's colorful and you get a feeling from it. When you click on other pages, the images of the lovely postcards seem a bit swallowed by the white space to me.

    I think the "Search" field and the "Samples" and "Checkout" buttons interfere with her logo and might be better if they were situated on the right side.

    And, I just now tried scrolling down the page so that the white space above the top purple bar was gone and I think it simplifies the
    look making it also more impactful.

    But, perhaps you were not looking for design ideas! These were just some things that occurred to me as I was looking around. Wish I had the opportunity to visit.
    Thanks for the giveaway!

  6. 1. I haven't tried any of her perfumes: I'd like to try Fig and Lumiere

    2. Ambergris

    3. I found the site to be very clean and easy to navigate. Perhaps move the FAQ up to the main menu?

    I have a copy of her book, Essence and Alchemy - fascinating!

  7. Oops. I'm wrong - she does have a Home page and you get to it by clicking on her logo. Duh. Sorry. I was clicking around there for a while and got confused. Pardon!

  8. 1. I've never tried anything from Aftelier, but Parfum de Maroc, Cognac and Shiso all sound like things I might like.

    2. Seems like Ambergris is the focal point.

    3. The only thing I'd personally like might be more info about the fragrances. Some descriptions offered a little insight into what inspired them, or what kind of mood they evoke. I would love it if all of the descriptions included that.

  9. 1. Nope never tried anything from Aftelier (my education in perfumista-hood is sadly lacking in niche). However, I saw a few things there I'd like to try.
    2. Ambergris - intriguing!
    3. The site is pretty to look at and easy to navigate.

  10. 1. I have been dying to try Blond Tabac but have not ordered it yet!
    2. Ambergris of course.
    3. I was surprised that there were no books on perfumery in the workbook or perfumer botanicals section. Not that I am up to the task of mixing such lovely concoctions but someone else might find it educational.

  11. 1.I have not tried any of these but Tango sounds wonderful. The Jasmine/Muse solid would be my next try.


    3.The site is great.

  12. 1. I've never tried any Aftelier scent, but if I could I'd choose Fig, I think. They all sound wonderful but I do love anything with fig.

    2. Ambergris

    3. I'd like to see text that matches (or compliments) the logo. The colors and layout are nice and make sense.

  13. 1. Not tried any yet. I very much want to try Lumiere, Parfum de Maroc, Cepes and Tuberose, and Parfum Prive!

    2. Ambergris.

    3. I like the website since it's simple and it's easy to browse through...maybe more photos like the one on the front page?

  14. 1. No. I live somewhere that makes this impossible, but I'm moving to New York, so I hope to try soon.
    I'm actually interested in the one with Shiso. I'm not sure I'd like it, but I love the idea of it.
    2. Ambergris. Amazing.
    3. I agree that knowing what the gift certificate would look like would be helpful. The site and the perfumes and the silver cases are all so perfectly beautiful, I'd hate to send someone an ugly gift certificate with no explanation about Aftelier. I'm really looking forward to online crafting information.

    Thank you! Michele, currently in Jakarta, Indonesia

  15. Hi there! :)

    1. I've tried only a recipe that she proposed in her book but her perfumes that she is selling on her website - no.

    2. Ambergris.

    3. Guest book or chat box, her blog and some articles on natural perfumery, some parts of her books etc...

  16. And yes, I forgot to add - If I could choose, it would be one of these: Cepes and Tuberose, Fig essence or Pink Lotus.

  17. 1, I've never tried any creation of Aftelier and I'm discovering, and;;am really attracted by Tango and Linden blossom.

    2, Ambergris

    3, I like it like that, it's nice and easy.

  18. 1. Never tried them, but Fig is calling my name.
    2. Ambergris. And I'm dying to try it.
    3. I'd like to see a user review section like on Luckyscent.

  19. 1. The only Aftelier I've tried is Trevert, which is quite good. No full bottles as yet.

    2. Ambergris, which I'd like to be able to smell. Someday I hope to go to a perfume shindig where folks have some of the natural materials for us to sniff.

    3. I'd like the summary pages to be more than just lists of perfume names and prices, so that one doesn't need to click on every single one to see whether one wants to know more.

  20. 1. I have not tried Aftelier creations, but would love to try Parfum de Maroc.

    2. Ambergris

    3. The front page looks complicated to me. I am not familiar with this line, there is a lot of text. Maybe something simpler?

  21. 1. Unfortunately I have never been able to try Aftelier, but I am very interested in Cacao and Lumiere after reading the descriptions and reviews.

    2. Ambergris

    3. Some of the fragrances had wonderful descriptions (not just a list of the notes), such as, "Restrained yet sensual," when describing Lumiere, and "animal undertones," in the blurb about Cepes and Tuberose. These visceral terms help give me a better idea of what I'm going to get from these different notes. In short, more descriptions like this would be great!

  22. eleven european mysticsJuly 03, 2010 10:16 AM

    1. haven't tried. would be very interested in trying the following: trevert, tango, cacao, parfum prive, cepes et tubereuse, in that order
    3. according to the website text: osmanthus, ambrette seed, ambergris.
    3.i would call a generous website. It teaches, it shows, it explains, and yet the graphics are not coincident with the contents. It would need different fonts, more succint illustrations, that is, less clutter of bottles whenever one changes category, for example.

  23. Well that little side trip cost me some money!
    Love the site, easy (too easy) to use.
    Can't wait to try the Tarragon and Trevert..

  24. I just recently visited the Aftelier redesigned website and I loved the charming, vintage vibe.

    1. I've been coveting this line for a couple of years now, but haven't tried anything [yet]. The Parfum de Maroc and the Fig perfume will be my first choices. [I'm on a mission to try every fig scent in the world and the spices + rose in Maroc are right up my alley.]

    2. Ambergris, of course.

    3. No advice from me - the site looks great and is easy to use!

    Thanks for the opportunity to win something wonderful!

  25. 1. I have never tried any Aftelier creations but I would love to! Tango sounds intriguing but Cepes an Tuberose would probably be my first choice. It sounds...just magical. Wild mushrooms and tuberose, I just have to know what that smells like as I love tuberose and usually like mushroom-like notes in perfumes.

    2. Ambergris

    3. Maybe more information about the scents. I like the site, it's accessible and easy to navigate. and

  26. 1/ I've tried the Shiso, Cognac and Cepes and Tuberose

    2/ Ambergris

    3/ I am really looking forward to the online classes. Also any educational information about natural perfumes, perfumery in general

    Ara in BC

  27. 1. I'd love to try some of the absolutes & essential oils she offers.

    2. Ambergris.

    3. I like the site & product line a lot and found the website very informative & interesting without seeming too commercial.

  28. 1. I have never tried any of the Afteliers - it's hard to choose since they all sound great, but Pink Lotus sounds right up my alley, and so does Lumiere.

    2. Real ambergris!

    3. The site is very informative and attractive, but I would have expected a more artistic overall design for it, considering the source. Even so, it's very enticing!

  29. 1. I have not tried any of Aftelier's fragrances, but I will be ordering several samples. I'm also considering a solid compact for my birthday - they are gorgeous! and I love solid perfumes.

    2. What is the ingredient in the center of Parfum Privé? Sounds like it's built around the hard-to-find ambergris, though this info is a level up from the description of the perfume itself.

    3. It's a lovely site and a lovely design with lovely things. I would cross-list some of the products. You have a cook's essence of chocolate - why not have that listed under the Cacao perfume? I didn't know I wanted to see the food essences, but since I was tasked with poking around, I did look at them and now I'm thinking about trying those as well. Cross-listing things from different categories - not just a solid compact (though those are GORGEOUS) could increase buying of NON perfume.

  30. 1. I'm dying to try Pink Lotus or Tango. They both sound so lovely!

    2. Ambergris.

    3. I would love to be able to browse perfumes based on notes. Other than that, I love the site!

  31. 1. Haven't tried any yet but Tango sounds divine.

    2. Ambergris

  32. 1) I've never tried anything, but would love to get a chance at Cepes and Tuberose.

    2) Ambergris.

    3)Everything is clear and easy to navigate. And no annoying music, thank Heavens.

  33. 1. I've tried many of Mandy Aftel's perfumes-just to name a few: tango, parfum de maroc, pink lotus and cepes & tuberose( my personal favorite). I share her love of deep, oriental-type perfumes.
    2. The central note in parfum prive is ambergris.

    3. To make Mandy Aftel's site better, I would suggest that she offer a wider array of botanicals & chef's essences than are currently available.

  34. 1. I've tried some Aftelier creations. I've ordered some samples, and I am slowly (very slowly) testing them.
    2. Ambergris.


  35. 1. I've never tried Aftelier but I would want to try the Fig and Tuberose.
    2. Ambergris
    3. I like the site and can't think of anything that I would change.

  36. 1. I have not tried any Aftelier scents, but I am very intrigued by Tango.
    2. Ambergris.

  37. 1) I've been lucky enough to try Cepes et Tuberose. It reminds me of L'Heure Bleue in the feeling it inspires, slightly narcotic and melancholy.

    2) Ambergris

    3) I'd love to see an option to leave reviews on the site. There are so many scents and products to try, it would be helpful to read opinions to narrow down the options.

    Thanks for the draw!

  38. 1. I have not tried any of the Afterlier creations but would love to. What interest me most is the Cepes and Tuberose perfume. Thank you!

    2. Ambergris

    3. This is my first visit to Afterlier and I like the site just as it is. It was very easy to navigate and I appreciate the fact that it's not so overloaded with stuff that it makes my computer freeze up. Thanks for the giveaway and have a nice day!

  39. 1 I have been wanting to try the boozy Cassis for a while now, but after looking at her website I also really want to try her Cepes and Tuberose. I love earthiness in my perfume!

    2. Ambergris

    3. I agree some review for her products would be great, but thats all. The website is both organized and pretty.

  40. 1. I've never tried any Aftelier perfumes, but the White Flowers and Linden Blossom are very intriguing to me.
    2. Ambergris
    3. The site looks great to me, wouldn't change a thing! Plus, it loads quickly, that's always nice.

  41. 1. Cepes & Tuberose s first on my list. So unique!
    2. Ambergris. Is Mandy using the real thing? I thought it was illegal.
    3. Another vote for user reviews.

  42. 1. I have not yet had the chance to try any of these, but I so watn to try Maroc and Shiso liquid perfumes, but I am *dying* to try one of the solid parfum compacts. I want the Boronia really badly. I've never smelled Boronia but it sounds amazing. If I win the lottery I'll get a Boronia, a Muse, and an Alchemy solid.

    2. It's ambergris, which makes me want it really badly. Love the stuff.

    3. I love the site so much. The only request I would have would be the ability to have a double solid in a custom choice. If I could get a double in Alchemy and Muse, or Muse and Rose, or Alchemy and Boronia (which of course would cost more, I do understand that), I would be thrilled.

    (fountaingirl -at- gmail -dot- com)

  43. 1. I have not tried any of of Aftelier creations, but Chocolate and Saffron Body Oil interests me most.
    2. Ambergris is the ingredient in the center of Parfum Privé

    [email protected]

  44. 1) I have been dying to try her Fig and Lumiere! And now that I see that she has samples, I think I'll place an order!
    2) Ambergris (wow)
    3) I loved Mary Aftel's book, and her website really inspired me at the beginning of my hobby. When I looked at it again, I was struck by two things that I think I missed when I first visited:
    1) There are samples, which I somehow missed last year
    2) I remember thinking back then that the perfume was incredibly expensive. But the minis make it affordable. I wonder if she should put the minis on the page that says EDP (maybe under the current ones). At first I clicked there, and didn't realize that the others were still available. But I love the new site!

  45. I havent tried any of the fragrances yet, but did read the book several years ago and enjoyed learning from it.
    The solids really caught my attentions, I'd love to try them all especially the Roses Solid.

    The answer is ambergris. I like the site, it looks nice and thankfully has no fussy flash or animation. Everything is laid out nicely.

  46. 1. I have sampled several of her perfumes.My favorites are Tango and Boronia. Tango really does smell like a sinful night on the beach...booze, woodsmoke, and flowers. Boronia is the best smelling perfume I have smelled in my entire life. It smells like the romanticized forest of my childhood. Heavenly. My next round of samples will include more Boronia just so I can smell it again (can't afford $220!) Fig, Rose, Cassis, and Chocolate and Saffron body oil. Mandy is a genius and everyone who likes perfume should read her book "Essence and Alchemy".
    2. Ambergris. How the heck does she get it?
    3. I think there should be a sort of inclusive "dictionary" of all the scents, whatever form they come in, with a description and links to reviews of each. That's really the only thing I would change.

  47. 1. I've never tried any Aftelier perfumes, and I don't think I'd ever heard of them. I definitely want to try them now, though! Especially Cognac, which sounds wonderful.

    2. Ambergris

    3. I found the site very well laid out. The only helpful thing I can think of would be to add links between the different forms a particular scent comes in (so that when I look at the 1/4oz listing I can see that it comes as a minature, a perfume pendant etc.)

  48. 1. I have tried a some of Mandy's perfumes. Boronia is my absolute favorite, it is a beautifully stunning perfume, that makes my heart skip a beat everytime I smell it. I have tried Lumiere~ lovely, with a almost sweet water like scent. Orchid~ creamy spicey floral. Cepes & Tuberose~ earthy beautiful tuberose. Pink Lotus~ meditative, feminine and gorgeous. Perfume de Maroc~ spicy and warm.
    Love to try Tango or Fig

    2. Ambergris

    3. I love the new site, much more used friendly than the old site. Really like that samples can be ordered individualy instead in threes. More detailed descriptions of each of her products.

  49. 1-I've not had the chance to try any Aftelier creations, yet. Cepes and Tuberose intrigues me. I spent the most time looking over the chef essences, though.
    3-I think the website was well organized and even though there is a lot of information, I am not overwhelmed. I would like to see one recipe added to the chef essences, or a suggestion on how much oil is needed in cooking.

  50. 1 - I have not yet tried any Aftelier products but they are definitely on my wish list.

    2 - Ambergris! I would love to be able to smell it...

    3 - I love the Must Haves, the Chef's Botanicals. In general, I think the site is very well organized. Love the illustrations. The antique cases are To Die For! Even though I am not much for solid perfumes, I would buy one of these as a special gift for someone--they are so original and lovely. I can't think of anything I would change about this site--it's fabulous!

  51. 1. I'd go for Shiso! The prive, linden, and tango ones sound pretty great too. I've never tried any of them, but I understand the creator is highly respected.

    2.ambergris, but seriously, you had me at osmanthus

    3. I'm not sure the perfume descriptions offer enough info on the mood or effect the perfume is trying to achieve. The photo for cardamon absolute shows an essential oil.


  52. 1. I haven't tried anything from Atelier. I think I need to try Tango. Roasted Seashells? Hmmmm.


    3. It looks fine. A bit basic, but fine. There are a few quirks that I've seen mentioned, but that is to be expected when something is new.

  53. 1. Never having tried Aftelier it would be hard to choose, though I am partial to Amber and would be very curious.

    2. Ambergris

    3. I think it's a little simple, but I would love more description on each offering though.

  54. 1.have not used but would love to try vetiver mint body oil
    2. ambergris

    ewhatley at

  55. 1. I've tried many of Mandy's pefumes. I LOVE her Boronia solid perfume. I wish I could rub it all over my body! I haven't tried Lumiere yet, but it's next on my list.
    2. Ambergris!

    Please enter me in the drawing.

  56. 1. I haven't had the pleasure of trying any of Mandy's perfumes, but I'm dying to try Cepes & Tuberose. Mushrooms in perfume?!

    2. Ambergris

  57. 1. I haven't tried them, but the Parfum de Maroc and the Citron Essence are definitely calling to me!

    2. Ambergris.

    3. I agree with previous posters that the fonts could use a makeover. There's an overall bulky feel and it doesn't really go with the clean, understated lines of the logo.

  58. 1) have not tried them yet...but would love to. I want to try them all, but I would begin with Lumiere.

    2) ambergris

    3) the site is to navigate, the wonderful photography is a treat and the site map makes it easy to see everything.

  59. Thank you, everyone, for participating and providing so much input. I hope all of you get a chance to try and enjoy the Aftelier line and other wonderful artisan perfumes.The contest is now closed and the winner is ElizabethN.

    Elizabeth, please email me (address in the right sidebar) so we can work out the details.

  60. Wow, I almost missed this! Also, Gaia. I am so excited about the mystery musk series, I might have made a little "EEEEEE!" sound when I saw that you were participating. Yay!

    1.) I don't think I have ever tried Aftelier creations, which surprises me because some of these products are GORGEOUS. The perfume pendants look just like my kind of thing. SIGH. Gosh, I wouldn't know where to start. I think I'm actually very curious about the perfumed teas! What a great idea. But for the perfume, I think Tango sounds very interesting, unlike anything I think I've ever heard of.

    2.) Looks like Ambergris is the center of the Parfum Prive. Oh no, now I'm not sure if I'd choose Tango first.

    3.) I think the Aftelier site is highly informative and easily navigated, with a lot of products offered and samples. I don't think they could do better! Whenever I get excited about a perfume, I love to read as much about it as possible. This site offered some great reading.


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