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Perfume Notes (January 2018)

Hello all!

I know I have been AWOL for a while, now—among other things, I have been hard at work on the nail polish database—a brand spanking new version is coming, with the ability to track your own collection. (‘Cause I personally really, really need to do that!)

For now, I can only offer up this rather long list of perfume notes that I have compiled over the month of January. As you can see, I’ve been doing a lot of huffing. This comes just in time for Valentine’s Day, which is tomorrow, in case you need some gift ideas for a lovely lady in your life!

Happy Valentine’s Day to you all! 💝

The full list for January:

  1. adidas Born Original for Her
  2. Ariana Grande Ari
  3. Bvlgari Splendida Iris d’Or
  4. Calvin Klein Obsessed for Women
  5. Calvin Klein Reveal
  6. Chanel Allure (EDT)
  7. Chanel Allure (EDP)
  8. Chanel Coco Mademoiselle (EDP)
  9. Dior Miss Dior Absolutely Blooming
  10. Dior Hypnotic Poison
  11. Dior Pure Poison
  12. Escada Sorbetto Rosso
  13. Estée Lauder Modern Muse Le Rouge
  14. Etat Libre d’Orange Jasmin et Cigarette
  15. Etat Libre d’Orange Putain de Palaces
  16. Giorgio Armani Sí
  17. Givenchy Ange ou Démon
  18. Guerlain Mon Guerlain
  19. Jason Wu Jason Wu
  20. Jean Paul Gaultier Classique Essence de Parfum
  21. Lacoste Eau de Lacoste
  22. Lancôme La Nuit Trésor EDP
  23. Prada La Femme Intense
  24. Paco Rabanne Lady Million
  25. Paco Rabanne Olympéa
  26. Rihanna Rogue
  27. Salvatore Ferragamo Signorina Misteriosa
  28. Sofía Vergara Love (Fragrance Mist)
  29. Sofía Vergara Sofía (Fragrance Mist)
  30. Mugler Angel (EDP)
  31. Mugler Womanity
  32. Vera Wang Princess of Hearts
  33. Vera Wang Princess Noir
  34. Yves Saint Laurent Black Opium
  35. Yves Saint Laurent Black Opium Floral Shock
  36. Yves Saint Laurent Black Opium Nuit Blanche

I also got minor sniffs of these on cards, so I won’t talk about them today. Several are scents I had tried once and forgotten—I’ll have to revisit some of them on skin!

  1. Chanel Beige
  2. Chanel Chance
  3. Chanel Cristalle (EDT?)
  4. Chanel Gabrielle
  5. Dior J’Adore Eau Lumière (EDT)
  6. Mugler Aura

[Quick edit note: I had to fix quite a lot of things in this post; WordPress appeared to have not saved some of the bits I wrote, so certain entries were just incorrect. I think I’ve fixed everything, now! (Feb 13, 2018 at 11:55 PM)]

Born Original for Her

adidas Born Original for Her EDP 75 mL2015

Top Notes: bergamot, apricot, orange
Heart Notes: coconut, candied apple, jasmine
Base Notes: tonka bean, cedar, olive wood

I tried this because of consistent good reviews, but I really did not like this one. The drydown smells an awful lot like another perfume I’ve tried, but I can’t think of what it is. It’s just so synthetic and musky, it burns my nose hairs.


Ariana Grande Ari EDP 50 mL2015

Top Notes: pear, grapefruit, raspberry
Heart Notes: lily-of-the-valley, rose, vanilla orchid
Base Notes: marshmallow, creamy musk, blonde woods

[Edited again on Feb. 15. WordPress reverted one or two of my saves, so this ended up being the copy-paste from last month’s review of Ariana Grande Moonlight. D’Oh! I had to rewrite my review for Ari.] Surprisingly lovely! Unlike her bottle for Moonlight, Ari’s bottle actually does look this nice in person. I love the little furry pompoms! Ahhhhhh! Anyway, this smells very pretty, but it’s also very one-dimensional. It smells the way you’d imagine a fluffy, pink marshmallow smells if it grew in a cartoon garden. Sadly, it is also quite fleeting on my skin. I picked up a set of Ariana Grande minis over Christmas, so I do have a teensy little pour bottle. I can’t imagine it will last me very long! Maybe I’ll pick up the full size one day, if it gets cheap enough.

Splendida Iris d’Or

Bvlgari Splendida Iris D'Or EDP 100 mL2017 | Sophie Labbé

Top Notes: violet leaf, heliotrope
Heart Notes: orris root, mimosa
Base Notes: tonka bean, vetiver, sandalwood

Bvlgari recently reissued a new line of Splendida perfumes to replace a few of their classics; Splendida Iris D’Or is a replacement for Bvlgari Femme. I don’t remember the original well enough to properly compare them, but they both have a quietly elegant feel. I am quite a fan of iris in perfumes, though I did find the very pleasant Iris D’Or to be a bit too soft and forgettable.

I will note that I had the second-most awful allergic reaction I’ve ever had to a perfume! I spritzed it on my neck and twenty-four hours later, a rash developed that stuck around for almost a week. (If you’re curious, the worst offender was Hugo Boss Orange, which I’d sprayed onto my inner elbow, where within hours, I grew a huge, raised red bump the diameter of a tangerine. That was fun.)

Obsessed for Women

Calvin Klein Obsessed for Women EDP 50 mL2017 | Honorine Blanc, Annick Menardo

Top Notes: citrus, neroli, elemi
Heart Notes: violet leaf, lavender, sage
Base Notes: Musk Helvetolide, ambrette, Muscenone

Sprayed on a card, this smelled basically like cK Be, or cK One, I forget which. It sounds like something I would like, with citrus and lavender, but holy cow, did this react horrendously on me. It immediately turned into this screechy, synthetic mess on my skin. I imagine it’s a perfectly nice unisex sort of fragrance on the right person, but I am not that person.

Also, it smells nothing like the classic Obsession; I wonder why they didn’t just give it an entirely different name and bottle style.


Calvin Klein Reveal EDP 100 mL2014 | Jean-Marc Chaillan, Bruno Jovanovic

Top Notes: salt, pink pepper, black pepper, white pepper
Heart Notes: orris root, ambergris, solar accord
Base Notes: sandalwood, Cashmeran, musk

Reveal, on the other hand, is simply lovely! I wouldn’t have thought I’d like all that pepper in the opening, but it’s pretty tame.

This perfume is a little salty, a little spicy, with cozy and creamy woods in the base. If you like Paco Rabanne Olympéa for its salt note, but found it to be too overwhelming (as I did), then you might want to give Reveal a try. I have to re-sniff it, for sure, but I think I may want a bottle. I dig the bottle design, though it is also quite awkward to use.

Allure (EDT)

Chanel Allure EDT 50 mL1996 | Jacques Polge

Top Notes: mandarin, lemon, bergamot, peach
Heart Notes: rose, jasmine, lotus, peony, magnolia, orange blossom
Base Notes: vanilla, sandalwood, vetiver

Allure was first released as an EDT, and I’m sure I must have sniffed it back in the day, but 20-something me was not a fan. I don’t know if my preferences changed, or perhaps it’s the reformulation that Allure and countless other perfumes have undergone in the last decade (due to IRFA regulations), but I am in love with Allure, now. It’s warm, elegant, citrus-y and floral, with a subtle sweetness and powder. It’s an everyday, every season, do anything kind of scent. I do wish it lasted longer on my perfume-eating skin, but that’s probably more of a me issue than Chanel’s. The bottle isn’t one of Chanel’s best, though, as I find it very plain and somewhat masculine.

Allure (EDP)

Chanel Allure EDP 50 mL1999 | Jacques Polge

Notes: bergamot, mandarin, peach, rose, passionfruit, peony, jasmine, magnolia, lotus, vanilla, vetiver

The EDP version of Allure came out a few years after the EDT, and it was described as having an atypical fragrance structure (as does another 1990s perfume I love, Lancôme Poême). Instead of the usual top notes, middle notes, and base notes, Allure is structured in a “multi-faceted” way with the notes overlapping. Allure EDP is a lot warmer and peachier than the EDT, and less citrus-y. They are, to me, definitely different enough to own both, and so I do! (For Canadians, I picked up the EDT with Optimum Points, and bought the EDP during a bonus points event.)

Coco Mademoiselle (EDP)

Chanel Coco Mademoiselle EDP 100 mL2001 | Jacques Polge

Top Notes: orange, orange blossom, bergamot
Heart Notes: mimosa, jasmine, rose, ylang-ylang
Base Notes: tonka bean, patchouli, vanilla, white musk

Coco Mademoiselle is ridiculously popular, and yet I really do not like it. It’s just way too patchouli-heavy for me (same reason I don’t like the new Miss Dior, I guess). It also gives me a headache fairly quickly, so I have no interest in it. I did sniff it again last month, as it had been so long since the first time I tried it, but no dice. I still don’t like it, though its popularity clearly endures. I think the Chanel lady told me that it’s right up there with N°5 and Chance; frankly, I had no idea Chance was such a bestseller! I’m more of a Coco/Coco Noir, No°5 Eau Première, and Allure person.

Miss Dior Absolutely Blooming (EDT)

Dior Miss Dior Absolutely Blooming 100 mL2016 | François Demachy

Top Notes: raspberry, pomegranate, blackcurrant, pink pepper
Heart Notes: rose, peony
Base Notes: musk

As I mentioned in the Coco Mademoiselle review, I don’t like the new versions of Miss Dior, which just have too much patchouli for me. I surprised myself by quite liking the Miss Dior flanker, Absolutely Blooming, but then I realized it’s because it doesn’t really have any patchouli in it. I liked it a lot the first time I tried it, so much that I was tempted to get a bottle with my Optimum Points—but upon re-sniff, I decided that the berries were a bit too much for me (I am not usually a big fan of the red berries accord in many perfumes) and went with Allure EDT, instead.

Pure Poison

Dior Hypnotic Poison EDT 50 mL2004 | Carlos Benaim, Dominique Ropion, Olivier Polge

Top Notes: bergamot
Heart Notes: jasmine, orange blossom, gardenia
Base Notes: sandalwood, amber

I can’t do a proper review here, because I think the bottle I tested in store may have gone off. There was only a sad little puddle at the bottom of the bottle (which should have warned me) and the initial blast was so sour and hairspray-like that I couldn’t really pay attention to the rest of the scent.

Hypnotic Poison (EDT)

Dior Hypnotic Poison EDT 50 mL1998 | Annick Menardo

Top Notes: apricot, plum, coconut
Heart Notes: tuberose, jasmine, lily-of-the-valley, rose, rosewood, caraway
Base Notes: sandalwood, almond, vanilla, musk

The notes make this sound like something I’d love (apricots, almonds, and rose!) but I found it overwhelmingly sticky and cloying. I do wonder if, as with Pure Poison, the tester had gone off, because this smelled a bit plasticky.

Sorbetto Rosso

Escada Sorbetto Rosso EDT 50 mL2018

Top Notes: pear, citrus, Calone
Heart Notes: watermelon, salt, aquatic notes
Base Notes: amber, praline

I’ve never tried an Escada and liked it: they’re always too fruity, just too damned fruity, and overly alcohol-smelling. Sorbetto Rosso is no exception.

I guess if it’s the kind of thing you like, you’ll love it! If you don’t like Escada’s summer edition fragrances, you won’t change your mind here. The bottle is super pretty—honestly, I think that is the only reason I tried it.

Modern Muse Le Rouge

Estée Lauder Modern Muse Le Rouge EDP 50 mL2015

Top Notes: redcurrant, raspberry, pink pepper, safffron
Heart Notes: rose, jasmine, magnolia
Base Notes: patchouli, vetiver, vanilla, ambrette

I love rose and I really like a spicy rose, but I mainly smelled a fruity cough syrup. Too much patchouli for me, as well. The bottle’s sprayer was also very annoying to use.

Jasmin et Cigarette

Etat Libre d'Orange Jasmin et Cigarette 50 mL2006 | Antoine Maisondieu

Notes: jasmine, tobacco, apricot, tonka bean, curcuma, cedar, amber, musk

I was so close to buying this one blind, when I saw it at a great price, but in the end I bought some samples first. Turns out I needn’t have bothered—this stuff is lovely! The jasmine is very pretty and not too indolic. I’ve never been a smoker, but the tobacco note in this is intriguing. To be honest, it smells less smoky and more like fresh hay to me. Wonderful, wonderful stuff. This fragrance also lasts reasonably well on my skin.

Putain des Palaces

Etat Libre d'Orange Putain des Palaces EDP 30 mL2006 | Nathalie Feisthauer

Notes: rose, violet, leather, lily-of-the-valley, tangerine, ginger, rice powder, amber, animalic notes

Ditto to not needing to buy samples for this one first, at least for me! Putain des Palaces, literally Hotel Whore, is a perfume that smells like lipstick and skin-up-close. I thought the dirty spice notes might put me off (cardamom ruined the otherwise stunning Penhaligon’s Amaranthine for me) but it works beautifully here. I mean, it’s not the kind of perfume I’m going to wear while running errands all day, but mmm, I will definitely wear this one at home, while snuggling.


Giorgio Armani Sí EDP 100 mL2013 | Christine Nagel

Top Notes: cassis
Heart Notes: freesia, rose
Base Notes: vanilla, patchouli, amber

Sí is one of those terribly pleasant, yet fairly unremarkable perfumes. It’s sweet and fruity, warm and tasteful, and I find it very hard to remember exactly what it smells like. The bottle is very elegant, and overall Sí screams bestseller. Nothing wrong with that at all, but it simply doesn’t strike me in any way whatsoever.

Ange ou Démon

Givenchy Ange ou Démon EDP 100 mL2006 | Jean-Pierre Bethouart, Olivier Cresp

Top Notes: mandarin, cumin, saffron
Heart Notes: lily, Maxillaria orchid, ylang-ylang
Base Notes: rosewood, oakmoss, tonka bean, vanilla

This opens up exactly like Robitussin to me—blech! After that initial blast passes, the perfume smells very rich and heavy: not much “angel or demon” duality in this. It feels very ’90s, even though it was launched in 2006. I like the spice notes in it, and the florals in the drydown—especially the ylang-ylang, one of my favorite floral notes—are quite heady and intoxicating in a good way. But, overall it is too syrupy sweet and dense for my taste. I can definitely imagine this smelling magnificent on some people; just not me.

I wish I liked this better, partly because the bottle is a stunner! It’s morbidly fascinating, with the notches in the glass on the back reminding me of vertebrae.

Mon Guerlain

Guerlain Mon Guerlain EDP 100 mL2017 | Thierry Wasser, Delphine Jelk

Top Notes: lavender
Heart Notes: jasmine
Base Notes: vanilla, sandalwood

I tested this twice last month and my verdict had been that I couldn’t smell much of it, so I thought I may have been anosmic to a major component. Well, I tested it for a third time and I don’t know whether something has changed, or maybe I’m just paying much closer attention to it, but now I definitely do smell something more. It’s a warm and powdery, sweet vanilla cut with something slightly bitter. There is supposed to be a lavender note, so it’s probably that, though I’m not sure I smell lavender outright. Sandalwood in the base gives it a bit of creaminess. I do detect a combination of notes that strikes me as being a touch plasticky, but almost in a good way. Overall, Mon Guerlain is pretty and classy, except I cannot smell it at all unless I shove my nose right up against my skin! Well, that’s still a fail for me. Maybe when Mon Guerlain Extreme Noir comes out someday—as I’m certain more flankers will come!—I may find it more wearable!

Classique Essence de Parfum

Jean Paul Gaultier Classique Essence de Parfum EDP 50 mL2016 | Daphne Bugey

Top Notes: chili, ginger, whipped cream
Heart Notes: jasmine, orange blossom
Base Notes: Cachalox, musk, cedar

Jean Paul Gaultier’s classic, Classique EDP, has been on my wishlist for many years, but I never got around to buying it since it wasn’t as though I loved it. I merely liked it a lot. But a few weeks ago I spotted a fancy new Classique-esque bottle and gave it a spritz.

Holy gorgeous. Classique’s newest flanker (at least it is new to Shoppers Drug Mart in Canada) has a stunning, sleek, geometric bottle and contents to match. It opens with a bang: aldehydes! It’s not listed in the official notes, but damnit, they’re there. I normally am not a huge fan of fizzy aldehydes, but here they are magnificent in combination with a delicious ginger top note. The aldehydes kind of last forever on me—I can still feel their sparkle after about a half hour. The middle of the fragrance turns into a creamy, white flowers-tinted vanilla dessert, yet it managed to avoid being too sweet and cloying. It is perfection!

I think it is superior to the original Classique by far, though perhaps it isn’t really fair to compare them. Classique strikes me as being far more lipstick-y and synthetic (in a great way); Essence is gourmand, warmer, spicier, and far more lush.

And yes, I have it coming in the mail as my Valentine’s Day gift.

Jason Wu

Guerlain Mon Guerlain EDP 100 mL2017 | Frank Voelkl

Top Notes: pink pepper, fig
Heart Notes: jasmine, peony, lily-of-the-valley
Base Notes: musk

I managed to squeeze this one in on the last day of the month! I’ve been looking forward to testing it, mostly because the bottle is drop dead gorgeous.

Unfortunately, it is a little bit of a bland floral (vaguely white florals, with jasmine and lily-of-the-valley, but weak) and there was something about the drydown that I nearly despised. Thankfully, it, too, was weak. However, the fragrance reached the drydown stage very quickly, and it got musky fast. I suppose it’s a particular type of musk used that I didn’t like, or perhaps it was the combination of it with something else in the perfume. Either way, it strikes me as being extremely safe and bland, even if you don’t mind (or even like) the drydown. Waste of a stunning bottle design, in my opinion.

Eau de Lacoste

Lacoste Eau de Lacoste EDP 50 mL2013

Top Notes: pineapple, mandarin, bergamot
Heart Notes: jasmine, orange blossom, pineapple blossom
Base Notes: sandalwood, Peru balsam, vetiver, vanilla

This is the first Lacoste perfume I’ve tried, and if they’re all like this, I’ll be skipping ’em.

The bottle is sporty, cute, and well-designed, but the contents just smell cheap and unpleasant to me. I really think it must be the pineapple top note—I often think pineapple scents smell horrible—though I wasn’t much of a fan of the drydown, either. Ah, well.

La Nuit Trésor

Lancôme La Nuit Trésor EDP 50 mL2015 | Christophe Raynaud, Amandine Clerc-Marie

Top Notes: pear, bergamot, tangerine
Heart Notes: orchid, rose, passionfruit, strawberry, vanilla
Base Notes: incense, papyrus, patchouli, lychee, praline

While Lancôme’s wildly successful La Vie est Belle is not my cup of tea (far too sweet and cloying), its newer Trésor flanker hits the right sweet spot. I have grown to love these trendy new over-sweet gourmand scents, and La Nuit Trésor is one of the best ones out right now. I can’t take it any time a fragrance is sweet and cloying, but La Nuit Trésor livens up its saccharine praline and caramel notes with a burst of fresh lychee, just juicy enough to balance out the sugar. The patchouli is clean, and the vanilla is creamy. It does not hurt at all that the bottle is beyond gorgeous!

I don’t find much in common with the original Trésor, which I do love but do not wear. The only real similarity is that both perfumes are tenacious beyond belief. Perfumes often disappear on my dry skin, but La Nuit Trésor hangs on for the whole day, and then some! I picked up a bottle last month and do not regret it one bit—I am often in need of a perfume that will last a good long time on me.


Mugler Angel EDP 50 mL1992 | Olivier Cresp, Yves de Chirin

Top Notes: bergamot, pineapple, red berries
Heart Notes: caraway, nutmeg
Base Notes: tonka bean, vanilla, patchouli, praline, sandalwood

This is one of those perfumes I’m familiar with because it’s immensely popular, but I’ve never actually tried it on myself before! I rectified this last month and spritzed a bit on my wrist. Oh, I definitely understand why this is so well-loved, but damn if it isn’t crazy strong! One little spritz was on my wrist all day long.

Normally, I dislike a lot of patchouli in a fragrance, but there are exceptions, and Angel is one. What turns me off Angel is not the patchouli, and not even that pineapple top note that I did not notice at all. It’s gotta be the spices. Oh my goodness, does this ever smell skanky on me! I swear I took a bath before spritzing this on myself, okay? Yes, this goes horribly, horribly skanky on me after about ten minutes. I am having flashbacks to when I put a whole spray of Guerlain Jicky on, then felt terribly self-conscious about my perfume’s skankiness for the rest of the day.

So, as beautiful as it smells on others, Angel (and Jicky, and the aforementioned Penhaligon’s Amaranthine) has no place in my wardrobe.


Mugler Womanity EDP 50 mL2010 | Mane, Alexis Dadier, Ralf Schwieger

Notes: fig, caviar, fig tree, fig leaf

I’ve tested this a few times, and it’s gotta be that caviar note or perhaps the way it’s juxtaposed with fig, but I utterly despise this perfume. It is the only one I’ve ever smelled that makes me feel nauseated. Frankly, it reminds me of stale bodily fluids. I also think the bottle design is vulgar and fairly ugly. The cherry on top: the name makes me cringe, too. I’m happy for those who can wear this, as it’s not actually a badly made perfume—but it just turns into an unholy mess on my skin.

La Femme Intense

Prada La Femme Intense EDP 50 mL2016 | Daniela Andrier

Top Notes: frangipani, ylang-ylang
Heart Notes: tuberose, orange blossom, jasmine
Base Notes: patchouli, vetiver, vanilla, iris

All of the notes in this blend together beautifully, and the result is a rich, honeyed, luxurious-smelling white floral. It’s unremarkable to my nose, but very well-executed and “safe”.

For some reason, I did not see the original La Femme available for testing; I’ll have to seek it out. The bottle is pink and it contains more citrus, less patchouli, which sounds right down my alley!

Lady Million

Paco Rabanne Lady Million EDP 80 mL2010 | Anne Flipo

Top Notes: neroli, lemon, raspberry
Heart Notes: jasmine, orange flower, gardenia
Base Notes: patchouli, honey, amber

This is another one of those extremely popular scents that I’d never bothered to try on myself. I dig the bottle; it’s fun to depress the sprayer! I enjoyed the lemon-y opening, which leads into a perfectly pretty, sweet white floral with a heavy dose of honey. I often think honey smells too cloying, but it’s nicely done here. There’s nothing groundbreaking about it, but Lady Million is very amicable and I can certainly see why it is a bestseller.


Paco Rabanne Olympéa EDP 50 mL2015 | Loc Dong, Anne Flipo

Top Notes: mandarin, jasmine, ginger
Heart Notes: vanilla, salt
Base Notes: ambergris, cashmere wood, sandalwood

The salty aquatic notes in Olympéa are intriguing and very lovely, but overall I found the fragrance to be too heavy, heady, and a touch cloying. I really would not mind trying a light version of this, to be honest, but it looks like they came out with an intense version, instead.


Rihanna Rogue EDP 125 mL2013

Top Notes: lemon blossom, cyclamen
Heart Notes: jasmine, rose, plum, suede
Base Notes: musk, wood notes, patchouli, vanilla, amber

I have found Rihanna’s perfumes to be surprisingly good! Nude is my favorite (though the packaging leaves a lot to be desired), and Rogue is quite nice, as well, and with a better bottle. Rogue starts off a bit generically, though pleasant, and dries down to a soft, leather base—which seems unusual for a newer drugstore perfume. It isn’t too sweet at all, like a lot of popstars’ fragrances. Well worth a sniff.

Signorina Misteriosa

Salvatore Ferragamo Signorina Misteriosa EDP 100 mL2016 | Sophie Labbé, Nicolas Beaulieu, Juliette Karagueuzoglou

Top Notes: blackberry, neroli
Heart Notes: orange blossom, tuberose
Base Notes: patchouli, black vanilla mousse

I am very fond of the original Signorina EDP, which has a panna cotta note, but I find the Misteriosa flanker to be far too sweet and one-dimensional for my taste. It’s all sugary blackberry jam! The florals are pretty but far too subtle, covered up under a syrupy blackberry dessert.

Love (Fragrance Mist)

Sofía Vergara Sofía Fragrance Mist 236 mL2015 | Yves Cassar, Pascal Gaurin

Top Notes: mandarin, passionfruit, green apple, orange blossom
Heart Notes: coffee blossom, orchid, orris root, magnolia
Base Notes: ambrette, amber wood, praline, vanilla

I’ve been dying to try Sofía Vergara’s perfumes, since they get rave reviews online, but I didn’t want to blind-buy two bottles at around CA$30 each (and that’s at online discounters). Luckily for me, I spotted two fragrance mists at Winners, and (I know this was bad of me) I tried a quick spray of each since they were unsealed.

Love didn’t make a huge impression on me, and it didn’t last super long, either, not that I expect a body mist to do so. It was kind of sweet and pleasant, but I didn’t pick out any of the notes. It’s supposed to be a bit of a dupe for YSL Black Opium, but I’ll probably have to try the actual EDP to know if that’s the case. It might be that I was just too distracted by the other scent, though…

Sofía (Fragrance Mist)

Sofía Vergara Love Fragrance Mist 236 mL2014 | Bruce Jovanovic

Top Notes: mandarin, passionfruit, green apple, orange blossom
Heart Notes: coffee blossom, orchid, orris root, magnolia
Base Notes: ambrette, amber wood, praline, vanilla

…Sofía is lovely! It’s a little bit on the generic side, but it’s so damn pretty smelling that I don’t care at all. Very softly sexy and warm. I was also stunned to find that the fragrance mist lasts several hours on me—there are EDPs that can’t manage an hour or two on my skin!

When I finish this up, I will definitely be adding the Sofía EDP to my wishlist.

Princess of Hearts

Vera Wang Princess of Hearts EDT 100 mL2017

Top Notes: bergamot, strawberry, watermelon
Heart Notes: lily-of-the-valley, jasmine
Base Notes: vanilla cream, musk, cedar

The whole Princess line appeals to me in a very juvenile way, though I’ve never gone out of my way to try them. The original Princess is all right: I like the dry, gourmand base but not the sharp opening, and anyway, it doesn’t last very long on me. This is the first flanker I’ve tried—and there have been so many of them—and I like it! It’s so girly and bright with juicy watermelon and strawberry notes and a creamy drydown. It’s very pretty and if I had a teenaged girl to gift it to, I would do so immediately. I do think the bottle is on the less attractive side for a Princess fragrance, though (my favorite is Plaid Princess, though I haven’t been able to test it).

Black Opium

Yves Saint Laurent Black Opium Floral Shock EDP 90 mL2014 | Nathalie Lorson, Marie Salamagne, Olivier Cresp, Honorine Blanc

Top Notes: pink pepper, orange blossom, pear
Heart Notes: coffee, jasmine, almond, licorice
Base Notes: vanilla, patchouli, cedar, cashmere wood

I tried this when it first came out a few years ago, but I immediately dismissed it as being far too syrupy sweet. Well, the barrage of new fragrances that positively drip with sugar have finally converted me, I suppose. It’s not bad now that I’ve tried it again. I generally prefer the two flankers I’ve tried, though (Floral Shock and Nuit Blanche, mentioned below), as they are more interesting. I don’t really get the coffee note in the original Black Opium that people seem to go nuts for, so that’s probably why I’m less enamored of it. Nuit Blanche also lacks the patchouli that is present in Black Opium.

Black Opium Floral Shock

Yves Saint Laurent Black Opium Floral Shock EDP 90 mL2017 | Nathalie Lorson, Marie Salamagne, Olivier Cresp, Honorine Blanc

Top Notes: bergamot, lemon, pear, freesia
Heart Notes: gardenia, orange blossom, solar notes
Base Notes: amber wood, white musk, coffee

The addition of a citrus top note to Black Opium sounds like a good idea, but it ended up feeling a bit weird. A little too fresh and sour, the citrus juxtaposed against a sweet, dense white floral didn’t work well for me here. It might be the pear, too—I have trouble liking pear notes most of the time (Burberry Brit is a huge exception).

Black Opium Nuit Blanche

Yves Saint Laurent Black Opium Nuit Blanche EDP 90 mL2016 | Nathalie Lorson, Marie Salamagne, Olivier Cresp, Honorine Blanc

Top Notes: rice, Bourbon pepper, anise
Heart Notes: jasmine, coffee, peony, coriander
Base Notes: vanilla, sandalwood, musk, caramel, milk

Yummy! This edition, named for the annual art festival, Nuit Blanche, takes what I liked about the original (jasmine, vanilla, licorice, the minimal coffee note I can smell), takes away the stuff I don’t want (patchouli, pink pepper) and adds warm notes like rice, milk, and spices. Basically, this smells like the world’s sweetest rice pudding. The spice could have been amped up, but I’ll live. I ended up buying this one, of course!

Thanks for reading!



9 thoughts on “Perfume Notes (January 2018)

  1. Nice to see a post from you! Been wondering what fun stuff you’ve been up to. 🙂 Looking forward to the new nail polish database!!! 😀 I can be your guinea pig!

    Oh man, the reaction to the Bulgari Splendida Iris d’Or sounds terrible! I didn’t know that could happen with perfume… I always just assume it’s mostly alcohol. What ingredient do you think was the culprit?

    At one point, I’d smell Coco Mademoiselle on random people and ask them what it was. I was set to buy it for myself. Alas, it smells like dusty floral on me.

    I was surprised that I actually got on well with Lady Million. I got it in one of those Shoppers perfume samplers and it was in the running for redemption for the full size! I ended up with Prada Candy instead.

    Of all the ones you listed, the Jasmin et Cigarette intrigues me the most! Also, I want to know what “animalic notes” is…

    I wish the Angel perfume recipe would get lost and no one could ever replicate it or produce it ever again. I hate it so much. 🤬

    Liked by 1 person

    • You will be guinea pig number 1! LOL

      Yes, I actually keep a running list of the perfumes I’m allergic to. Thankfully, it’s not many (which is why I continue to spray with impunity), though I’ve yet to discover what the culprit is! It may be more than one ingredient, or perhaps a specific concentration of one. They never list the specific ingredients they use, let alone the amounts they use. I may never know.

      Coco Mlle does smell wonderful on some people! It just doesn’t get along with us, I guess. There is a new intense version of Coco Mlle that’s just come out. You should give it a try, just in case it works on you.

      Ah those Shoppers samplers are fun! I’m glad you like Prada Candy. The bottle is so gorgeous. I’m one of those people who can’t smell it. LOL. I get a little vague sweetness, then nada.

      Animalic notes generally refer to musky or sweaty sorts of smells. Technically, I guess it’s any note that is derived from an animal (or used to be, since most are synthetic these days): musk, ambergris, leather, and even stuff like milk, cream, caviar, honey and beeswax. The sweaty/stinky sorts of notes can be derived from plants, too (indolic jasmine, sweaty-smelling cumin and cardamom).

      Haha Angel is strong, strong stuff. But I reserve my Mugler derision for Womanity! 😂


  2. I’m sorry to hear about the allergic reactions you’ve experienced. I’ve had rashes from fragrances containing cinnamon as a fragrance note – but it took me while to put 2 and 2 together.

    I agree with what you said about Womanity. Yes, it does smell like stale bodily fluids. And like hair that hasn’t been washed in a whle. Together with sheets that haven’t been washed in a while. Very controversial, very Mugler. Anyway, I’m glad this monstrosity of a fragrance has been discontinued!

    Good to hear the Etat Libre fragrances are actually lovely! By the way, I always imagined Putain des Palaces would smell like a skunkier version of Womanity. Like Womanity plus blood plus fart… 😀

    I like the Vera Wang princess fragrances too! If I wear 15 to 21 years younger, I’d have them all, AND I’d display them proudly somewhere in my room!

    I had Ange ou Demon Le Secret and I loved the fragrance. However, there is an elixir version which I need to get my hands on. I got to sniff it once and I regret that I didn’t buy it.

    Awesome post, by the way! This is the post I’ve wanted to do for ages, but never managed to put together… I’m in awe!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Ahh, I do actually have a mild allergy to foods/toothpastes containing cinnamon flavoring (I’m fine with the real thing, thank goodness)—I wonder if that same synthetic cinnamon is causing me issues in perfume.

      I love the idea of collecting a line of perfumes—the Princesses would be so perfect for a teen 🙂

      Ooh, if I ever see the AoD Le Secret and Elixir flankers, I will have to give them a try!

      I would love to see an extended perfume post from you! You’ve introduced me to quite a few I was unfamiliar with. 😁

      Liked by 1 person

    • And yes, the ELdO perfumes I’ve sampled are all very nice! I think I just like them as a house, in general—though I have NOT tried the infamous Secretions Magnifique. LMAO! The only other one I have from them is Rossy de Palma ❤️which I also picked up on sale from Sephora last year. I think the company is clearing out certain bottle sizes or something.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. So many fragrances I have never tried. I was interested in your thoughts on Poison (I have never liked any of those). I get a lot of compliments on BVLGARI but it’s a different fragrance than the one you tried (and had a reaction too – Yikes). I love the fragrances by Francis Maison Kurkdjian. Favorites.

    Liked by 1 person

    • You should definitely give Poison Girl a try! I like the EDT better than the EDP but both are lovely. I have never particularly liked any of the previous Poisons.

      Ooh, which Bvlgari did you have a reaction to? 😦

      I have not tried the Maison Kurkdjian line, but he is a wonderful perfumer! A few of my faves are his creations (Burberry Brit Rhythm for Her and My Burberry, Elie Saab Le Parfum).


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