Jean Paul Gaultier Classique Essence de Parfum advertisement

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)]

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Haulage! beautyBOUTIQUE Super Spend Your Points Event & FragranceX (January 2017)

In anticipation of the launch of PC Optimum on February 1, 2018, Shoppers Drug Mart is holding a Super Spend Your Points Event this weekend. If you’ve been saving up your Shoppers Optimum Points, now is definitely the time to redeem them!

I wish I hadn’t placed a redemption order earlier this week, but oh well. I really did not forsee them doing such a good redemption deal! The YSL Black Opium Nuit Blanche I got, which I worried about going out-of-stock, is still available, too.

Anyway, I went all out pricy perfume (and some nail polish, because it’s me), since I have decided I need to focus on finishing up a lot of makeup and skincare before acquiring any new ones. It is a brand new year, after all!

Brands like Chanel and Dior are generally the best fragrance options to redeem for, since their products are not as readily available at online discounters, or are not well-discounted even if they are. However, I found Dior Poison Girl EDT available at a better price online (and in a 30 mL size, which I prefer), so I decided against redeeming for that. Here’s what I got at Shoppers’ beautyBOUTIQUE:

What I Redeemed For

RALPH LAUREN
Woman Gift Set

30 mL EDP & 75 mL Body Lotion / $84, on sale for $67.20
(now sold out online; I did see some in-store at the SDM in Toronto Eaton Centre)
Ralph Lauren Woman Gift Set (EDP 50 mL, Body Lotion 75 mL)

This seemed to sell out immediately after I placed my order, so I am keeping my fingers crossed that I will indeed get it! [Edit: as I was writing up this post, I received an email saying my order has already shipped just a few hours after I placed it! Woohoo!]

I’m so glad I saw this set because I didn’t really need 50 mL, but that was the smallest individual bottle available online until a couple days ago. (I never get more than 30 mL unless I have to—I rotate through a lot of perfume.) This elegant, white floral scent is so gorgeous! It was love at first sniff.


CHANEL
Allure EDT

50 mL | $95
Chanel Allure EDT 50 mL

I actually wanted the EDP version of Allure, which is all cozy peaches, vanilla, and powdery florals! But the 50 mL EDP was sold out online, so I got the slightly cheaper EDT. My plan is to go in-store and test the EDT. If I like it, I’ll keep it and just get the EDP in another redemption. If I don’t like it, I should be able to exchange the unwrapped box in-store for the 50 mL EDP, and just pay the difference. It has been well over ten years since I last tested Allure EDT and I can’t remember it at all, but it is supposed to be a lighter, more citrus-y and sparkly scent than the EDP.

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Diesel Loverdose Tattoo EDP 50 mL

Haulage! Diesel — Loverdose Tattoo, & Perfume Notes (December 2017)

After the disappointment that was Oscar de la Renta Blue Orchid, I felt like I wanted a pick-me-up, and I usually like my birthday/Christmas money to go to perfume.

I was craving a rice pudding scent, and the fragrant folks over at the Fragrantica boards reminded me that Diesel Loverdose Tattoo EDP was a perfect choice for that scent. I had actually tested—and loved!—Loverdose Tattoo when it first came out, and somehow I had forgotten all about it. I think I may have been waiting in vain for it to show up on Shoppers Drug Mart’s clearance shelves. But after snagging both Loverdose and Loverdose Red Kiss 30 mL bottles for $19.99 a pop, I guess my luck has run out.

I had one of those big bonus Optimum Points offers (18,500 points for a $100 spend) loaded onto my Shoppers Optimum card, so I picked up Loverdose Tattoo EDP in the 50 mL bottle and added some grocery items (COFFEE) and small holiday gifts (CANDY) to reach $100. Not a bad deal at all, though I’m sad to report that the cosmetician didn’t give me any free beauty samples! It’s so random. Once I spent less than $5 on nail polish, and a different cosmetician gave me a nice skincare sample. This time I got a $67 perfume and nada. Should I be pushy and ask next time?

If I’d ordered via beautyBOUTIQUE online, I’d have gotten a free deluxe sample Stila All Day Liquid Lipstick and three additional free samples, plus had the opportunity to use Ebates. I’m not sure the Bonus Optimum points would have counted, though—it might have just been an in-store offer.

By the way, if you’re wondering, my favorite online grey market perfume reseller, FragranceX, also had Loverdose Tattoo. The 75 mL was the only size available, and it was priced the same as the 50 mL I got. I’m not fussed about the extra 25 mL, since it takes me forever to use up perfume. 50 mL is plenty for me. The only real advantages would have been no tax and the 10% discount I get with my loyalty points, though I would have had to add another small item to my order to get free shipping. I think the Optimum Points work out better, and, I get instant gratification buying it from the drugstore down the street.

Anyway, here’s the rundown on my latest perfume acquisition, and notes on several other perfumes I’ve tried in-store over the last week.

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fivezero's beautyBOUTIQUE haulage, Shoppers Optimum Points redemption (September 2017) Chanel, Dior, Estée Lauder

Haulage × 2! beautyBOUTIQUE (July & September 2017)

This post covers two Optimum Points redemption orders I placed in July and September 2017.

I’ve been racking up the points via the Shoppers app, and redeemed 95k points for $170 worth of product (all prices in CA$) in both July and September during two PLUS Bonus Events. Here’s July’s order:

  • ARTDECO Art Couture Nail Lacquer in Silver Willow (978)
  • Elizabeth Arden Advanced Ceramide Capsules (60 Capsules)
  • Estée Lauder Double Wear Stay-in-Place Makeup in 1N2 Ecru
  • Soap & Glory Flake Away Spa Body Polish

Free samples (I forgot to take pics of these):

  • Elie Saab Le Parfum EDT (sample)
  • Elizabeth Arden Ceramide Overnight Firming Mask (sample)
  • Vasanti Brighten Up! New Skin Amplifying Moisturizer (sample)

beautyBOUTIQUE actually made the first ever mistake I’ve ever had with them: they sent me the wrong shade of ARTDECO Nail Lacquer.

  • ARTDECO Art Couture Nail Lacquer in Rose Peony (953)

ARTDECO Nail Lacquer in Rose Peony 953

They only asked me to send a picture, which I did, and then they sent out Silver Willow right away. I got to keep Rose Peony, as well. I was really pleased with their excellent handling of an error. Plus, when they sent me the correct nail polish, they also included three free samples!

  • Lise Watier HydraForce Hydra-Protective Creme-Gel (sample)
  • PRADA Candy EDP (sample)
  • Sekkisei Clear Brightening Mask (sample)

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Haulage! Chanel, Dior, & Estée Lauder with the Spend Your Points PLUS Event at beautyBOUTIQUE

This Saturday and Sunday (September 23–24), Canada’s beautyBOUTIQUE by Shoppers Drug Mart is offering a Spend Your Points PLUS Event (see details in this post).

Don’t forget to use ebates Canada [referral link], as well! It’s 4% cash back for beautyBOUTIQUE today.

I’ve been racking up the points via the Shoppers app, and redeemed 95k points for $170 worth of product (all prices in CA$), including my first ever Chanel blush:

  • Chanel Joues Contraste Powder Blush in Élégance (370) [$53]
  • Chanel Le Vernis Longwear Nail Colour in New Dawn (578) [$32]
  • Dior Vernis Couture Colour in Metallics (612) [$33]
  • Estée Lauder Pure Color Love Lipstick in Moon Rock [$28]
  • Estée Lauder Pure Color Love Lipstick in Sly Wink [$28]

My subtotal was $174, so after tax, I paid a total of $22.62 plus 95k Optimum Points. Another $30 worth of Optimum Points will be added to my account in a couple of weeks, since this was a Spend Your Points PLUS Event.

Chanel Joues Contraste Powder Blush in Élégance (370)
Chanel Joues Contraste Powder Blush in Élégance (370)
Chanel Le Vernis Longwear Nail Colour in New Dawn (578)
Chanel Le Vernis Longwear Nail Colour in New Dawn (578)

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Haulage! fivezero's beautyBOUTIQUE by Shoppers Drug Mart Spend Your Points Plus Event Optimum redemption (June 2017)

Haulage! beautyBOUTIQUE by Shoppers Drug Mart (June 2017)

During last weekend’s Shoppers Drug Mart Spend Your Points Plus Event, I hopped onto their luxury beauty website, beautyBOUTIQUE, and redeemed 95,000 Optimum Points for $170 (plus $30 worth of Bonus Points to be added to my account later this month):

  • Chanel Le Vernis Longwear Nail Colour in Coralium (562) [$32]
  • Chanel Le Vernis Longwear Nail Colour in Sargasso (558) [$32]
  • Clarins 4-Colour Eye Palette (LE) from Sunkissed Summer 2017 [$45]
  • Dior 5 Couleurs Eyeshadow Palette in Attract (867) [$72]

These were my 3 free samples:

  • Elizabeth Arden SUPERSTART Skin Renewal Booster (free sample)
  • Elizabeth Arden White Tea EDT (free sample)
  • Lise Watier HydraForce Hydra-Protective Creme-Gel (free sample)

My total was CA$181, so $170 was subtracted from my points redemption. You still have to pay tax (13% HST in Ontario) on the full amount, however.

The savings is like paying $1.94 for each Chanel polish, $2.74 for the Clarins palette, and $4.38 for the Dior palette!

$181 subtotal – $170 redemption + $23.53 HST = $34.53 Total

Plus the $30 worth of bonus points to come later, too.

As usual, my beautyBOUTIQUE order arrived very promptly and perfectly packaged.

Here are more detailed product photos:

Chanel Le Vernis Longwear Nail Colours in Coralium and Sargasso

Chanel Le Vernis Longwear Nail Colours in Coralium and Sargasso (which doesn’t look this shimmery in real life, it’s the famed Chanel “invisible shimmer” type)

Dior 5 Couleurs Eyeshadow Palette in Attract

Dior 5 Couleurs Eyeshadow Palette in Attract

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Haulage! beautyBOUTIQUE by Shoppers Drug Mart (February 2017) fivezero's Chanel & Dior haulage

Haulage! beautyBOUTIQUE by Shoppers Drug Mart (February 2017)

Over the weekend, Shoppers Drug Mart held another Spend Your Points Plus event, and I redeemed 95,000 Optimum Points for $170 worth of haulage from beautyBOUTIQUE, Shoppers’ online luxury beauty store. Since this was a Plus event, I’ll get $30 worth of Optimum Points added to my account, as well.

It’s not as good a deal as some of the older Spend Your Points events (where you’d get to redeem 95,000 points for over $200 worth of stuff), but it looks like Shoppers has been phasing those out. It’s disappointing, but the Optimum Rewards are still pretty awesome.

beautyBOUTIQUE recently added Chanel (in its own boutique section, not mixed up with the riff raff in regular product categories!) and Urban Decay to its online store, which is great since those brands are not available in most Shoppers’ beautyBOUTIQUE locations. It was always a massive pain to redeem points in-store if I wanted products from several brands. beautyBOUTIQUE online has a lot of the brands together in one place, so I’m much happier redeeming points online, now. Plus, you can use ebates.ca for additional cashback!

Anyway, I would like to give beautyBOUTIQUE another huge rave! I’ve experienced a lot of crappy cosmetics delivery in Canada—cough! Hudson’s Baycough! Yves Rocher—but beautyBOUTIQUE has been fantastic. Everything arrived in a pretty little cardboard box, with bubble wrap and tissue paper so that delicate products are nicely protected. Free samples came in an organza bag tied with a ribbon.

Contrast that with nail polishes chucked into a massive cardboard box with no padding whatsoever, or a single crumpled up piece of brown paper at best, like I get from Hudson’s Bay and Yves Rocher. Yes, I’ve had luxury polishes shipped from HBC like that:

Also, I placed my order on Saturday, and my order arrived the next business day, Monday. I do live in Toronto, but damn if that isn’t awesome service! They even sent me a shipping notice less than three hours after I placed my order.

Final verdict? beautyBOUTIQUE is pretty great. I’ll be shopping with Shoppers/beautyBOUTIQUE for most of my beauty products at the moment, since I’m currently grabbing my wallet and avoiding Hudson’s Bay, Winners/Marshalls/HomeSense, Amazon, and storefronts using Shopify.

On to the fun stuff! Here’s what I hauled:

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