Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Perfume State Of Mind

Trying to put some order into my perfume world.

Sampling: Stéphane Humbert Lucas - 777 (a new line at Osswald). SHL is the man behind Nez à Nez and SoOud, and his new line is pushing things further: time, place, and price.

Wearing: Amouage. Lots and lots of Amouage, from the brand new Journey (both men and women, the latter is an interesting surprise, smells more French than a typical Amouage) to Honour Man which I just bought the husband for his birthday and promptly borrowed.

Can't Get Enough: Onda. At the end of the day there are some perfumes that make me question why I even bother with other stuff. Onda is a prime example that never fails to re-calibrate my nose, mind, and heart.

Dreading: Summer flankers. CKTHXBYE.

Feeling Nostalgic About: The blogsphere circa 2006. My eighth blog anniversary was a few weeks ago, which made me look back and reflect about the way things have changed, the bloggers who quit the game, office politics, the market- niche and other. Things haven't been the same for a long time, right?

Frustrated With: Vulgar prices, vulgar packaging, vulgar perfume reviews. We're being Kardashianed.

Worrying About: The implications of the changes coming to Henri Bendel. According to WWD: "Henri Bendel’s Fifth Avenue flagship in Manhattan cuts all outside brands from the assortment this fall". Basically, Bendel is closing its famous beauty and fragrance department and will only carry their private label products. It's the end of an era and a major loss to small niche brands, both perfume and beauty.

Missing: Takashimaya.

Vintage Kick: D'Orsay. I found a couple of interesting bottles over the weekend.

Wishing For: A truly spectacular groundbreaking new release from Serge Lutens in the export line. You know, a cheap thrill.

Photo: Mary Jane Russell by Louise Dahl Wolf for Harper’s Bazaar, March 1955, via


  1. Noooo on the Bendel change, I hadn't heard that.

  2. Sampling: The new LM Parfums fragrance, Ultimate Seduction. The name aggravates me because it sounds silly and doesn't fit the fragrance: a unisex, feel-good citrus atop a warm praline base.

    Wearing: SHL 777 Khol de Bahrein and Jardin d'Ecrivans George. With these two, I don't need to bother with much else, but I do anyway.

    Can't Get Enough: I think I'm leaving Onda here, too. Oh, Onda! ONDA!

    Dreading: I dread every new release these days, to be honest.

    Feeling Nostalgic About: The days before I got into the industry, when I could just enjoy fragrance. Now, I analyze everything to death, and it's tiring.

    Frustrated With: Distributors not understanding how ANYTHING works.

    Worrying About: The constant barrage of new niche lines. The center cannot hold - when will people realize that it's quality and not quantity?

    Missing: When $250 wasn't the new $100, and when a good fragrance could be found at department stores.

    Vintage Kick: Er, I just ordered Guerlain Aqua Allegoria Lys Soleia, does that count?

    Wishing For: That damn Guerlain blogger gift box, or at least a bottle of new Mitsy EDP - apparently the 2013 formulation is close to the original!

  3. Picked up D'Orsay's Intoxication at an antique mall last year--perfect for this time of the yr~Caroline

  4. Congrats on eight years of blogging - am glad you've stayed with it. I know how much incredible work and time it takes from bloggers who started out early on and have dropped out. I'm nostalgic for the early, early days of MUA - it's been years since I've gone there at all. And am nostalgic about Bendel - used to love going there. Deeply sad to hear about the changes.
    Hope you review the D'Orsays you found! A bottle of their Charme is one of those I managed to snap the top of the stopper off of, leaving it hopelessly plugged shut. So frustrating!
    Know how you feel about Onda. I have an embarrassing number of back up bottles of it - could never, ever imagine life without it. But today I'm actually not wearing perfume (probably the only day of the year I won't) - the air here is so intensely dense with the scent of osmanthus I didn't want to have anything compete with it. My current overwhelming perfume wish is that someone would create a perfume that truly matches the osmanthus we have growing around here - so far, none have and I've tried them all (including a couple of absolutes - close, but still not quite there). They may match the osmanthus from China, but not that in central North Carolina.
    Love that photo from Bazaar.


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