Shoppers Drug Mart in Canada often runs CA$19.99 specials on selected perfumes, and I’ve taken advantage of these sales many times. Over the years, I’ve picked up these scents, some for me and some were for giving. Once or twice they’ve been even cheaper, like $17 or $18!
- Burberry London for Men EDT (30 mL)
- Bulgari Mon Jasmin Noir EDP (25 mL)
- Jessica Simpson Vintage Bloom EDP (100 mL gift set)
- Burberry for Men EDT (30 mL)
- Bulgari Aqua EDT (30 mL)
- Roberto Cavalli Nero Assoluto EDP (30 mL)
- Diesel Loverdose EDP (30 mL)
- Adam Levine for Women EDP (50 mL)
- Bulgari Omnia Crystalline EDT (25 mL)
- Versace The Dreamer EDT (50 mL)
I’ve seen other scents there from notable brands like Lolita Lempicka, Cacharel, Vivienne Westwood, Elizabeth Arden, Azzarro, Oscar de la Renta, Calvin Klein, Aquolina, Givenchy, Nina Ricci, and Vera Wang, and also a bunch of the popular celebrity lines like Britney Spears, J.Lo, Katy Perry, Taylor Swift, Lady Gaga, Kim Kardashian, and Celine Dion. I’m waiting for Jean Paul Gaultier to show up so I can snag Classique and Ma Dame on the cheap! It can be quite the treasure trove for a perfume lover.
Rexall, a competing drugstore chain, also runs similar sales, and I just picked up my first $19.99 deal from them, too:
- Rihanna Fragrance Collection: Nude, RiRi, & Rogue Love EDPs (15 mL)
I’m in love with Nude but didn’t want to pony up the >$35 it would cost to get it even from an online discounter. I mean, it’s a celebuscent. Those just about always get discounted, right? I think RiRi is a bit meh, and I haven’t tried Rogue Love, but I figured $20 is less than $35! I don’t need a huge 100 mL bottle of Nude. And the mini 15 mL bottle is so much cuter than the regular sized bottle, which is so awkward to hold.
Anyway, The Dreamer is what I’m reviewing for this Throwback Thursday. Versace released this men’s fragrance back in 1996.
There are a few perfumes marketed to men that I like to wear on occasion (Chanel Égoïste, Van Cleef & Arpels Midnight in Paris) but this is probably the best unisex fragrance I’ve smelled outside of Acqua di Parma Colonia, which is very expensive compared to the cheap thrill that is The Dreamer. Probably not coincidentally, both come from Italian houses and have a fresh, soapy feel.
If you look at reviews of The Dreamer online—which I did since this was a “blind” buy for me—you’ll see quite a number of people saying that for the opening 20 minutes or so it smells terrible, but to stick with it. I braced myself for the initial spray, and lo and behold…I dig it. I dig it so much. Hot damn.
The opening is a blast of freshness, Tanqueray gin, and a little plastic and acetone that I bizarrely adore and am now a bit addicted to smelling. It smells very men’s cologne-y, and yet there’s something gentle and softly sweet about it that reads completely unisex.
The drydown consists of fresh cigarettes, lots of lavender to promote a cool and airy feeling, an undercurrent of spicy florals, a sprig of mint, and something chewy and resinous. Honestly, to describe it sounds like the perfumers just chucked a bit of everything into a vat! Yet it all comes out smelling pretty phenomenal, in my opinion. (One of my favorites, Balmain Jolie Madame, also has a bit of a tobacco note—both fragrances have a pleasantly old-fashioned sensibility, evocative of a grandmother’s purse. Lipstick and cigarettes! I don’t smoke at all, but I love that combo in perfume.)
Reviews of the longevity seem to vary; I personally find that it’s average for an eau de toilette, but my dry skin is also generally a perfume sponge. Sillage is minimal, on me at least, and I like it that way.
As a final note, the bottle is excellent! The cap is screwed on, and you just push it to spray. (This is great news for bargain hunters who are happy just getting a tester, which don’t typically come with caps.) I just have to remember this myself, as I’ve already absent-mindedly tried to pry the cap off. It’s also quite a sleek bottle, and not too gaudy even with the Medusa head relief on the front. It definitely looks and feels like the perfume should cost substantially more.
For the price you can get this at online discounters, this is a no-brainer if you like it. Reviews indicate that opinions on this fragrance are very polarized—which I don’t understand, hah!—so I’d suggest trying before you buy.
My bottle of Versace Dreamer Eau de Toilette (50 mL) was made in Italy. I purchased my bottle at Shoppers Drug Mart for CA$19.99. It can also be found at online discounters (my fave is FragranceX) for around CA$30 for a 50 mL bottle, or a 100 mL tester. The retail price is closer to CA$74 for a 50 mL bottle.
Luxury fashion house Versace was founded by Gianni Versace in Milan, Italy, in 1978. Versace perfumes are produced by Euroitalia SRL.