Viktor & Rolf, Magic perfume collection

Happy International Fragrance Day!

It’s been a long time since I last posted, but I didn’t want to pass on International Fragrance Day, because fragrance is what I have been utterly infatuated with over the last year!

Our family only just returned from a mini-vacation in Montréal (well, a holiday with a two year-old and a four year-old is not really a holiday, is it?!) and of course I did pick up a new perfume. Gotta love the $19.99 perfume shelves at Shoppers Drug Marts—Pharmaprix in Québec—and Rexalls!

Today, I’m going to do a very quick ‘n’ dirty roundup of my 10 new favorite perfumes, and 10 favorite new blind buys that I’m most excited to try out.

My 10 New Favorite Fragrances

fivezero's top 10 favorite recently-acquired fragrances, March 2019

1
Ariana Grande
— Cloud
whipped cream, praline, coconut, lavender, pear, musk

2
Avon
— Velvet
rose, fig, patchouli

3
Burberry
— Weekend for Women
peach, purple flowers, mandarin, musk

4
Kenneth Cole
— Kenneth Cole for Her
lily-of-the-valley, ambrette, carrot seed, peony, musk

5
LUSH
— Rose Jam Body Spray
rose, lemon, geraniumRead More »

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Chloé Nomade: The New Fragrance

Perfume Notes (March 2018)

It’s Friday the 13th!

My March perfume roundup took a while to compile; as you can see, I was a busy sniffer!

  1. Cacharel Anaïs Anaïs EDT
  2. Cacharel Scarlett
  3. Cacharel Yes I Am
  4. Cartier La Panthère
  5. Chanel Chance Eau Tendre
  6. Chanel Coco Mademoiselle Intense
  7. Chanel Cristalle EDP
  8. Chloé Fleur de Parfum Chloé
  9. Chloé Love Story EDP
  10. Chloé Nomade
  11. Clinique Aromatics Elixir
  12. Dior Addict EDP
  13. Dolce & Gabbana Light Blue Eau Intense
  14. Elie Saab Le Parfum in White
  15. Elizabeth Arden Untold Eau Fraîche
  16. Giorgio Armani Code Cashmere
  17. Givenchy Dahlia Divin EDP
  18. Givenchy Play for Her EDT
  19. Guerlain Aqua Allegoria Pera Granita
  20. Guerlain L’Instant EDP
  21. Guerlain La Petite Robe Noire Eau Fraîche
  22. Jennifer Lopez Blue Glow
  23. Lanvin Eclat d’Arpège
  24. Marc Jacobs Daisy Eau So Fresh
  25. Marc Jacobs Decadence EDP
  26. Mugler Angel Eau Sucrée (2018)
  27. Mugler Aura
  28. Oscar de la Renta Bella Blanca
  29. Ralph Lauren Romance Rosé
  30. Ralph Lauren Tender Romance
  31. Reem Acra Reem Acra
  32. Stella McCartney L.I.L.Y
  33. Yves Saint Laurent Mon Paris EDP

CACHAREL
Anaïs Anaïs EDT

Cacharel Anaïs Anaïs EDT 100 mL1978 | Roger Pellegrino, Robert Gonnon, Paul Leger, Raymond Chaillan
Top Notes: orange blossom, hyacinth
Heart Notes: rose, lily, jasmine
Base Notes: amber, sandalwood, incense

This one has been around for a long time, and while it’s never been one to which I paid much attention, I recently thought I’d resniff it. It has also recently been relaunched in EDP and EDT; I am pretty sure I tested the old version, since the bottle had the old style cap, which is as wide as the bottle itself.

Anaïs Anaïs is perfectly fine, and very 1980s-smelling. Strong, big florals, lots of powder. I don’t really have a reaction either way—I wouldn’t choose to wear it myself, but it smells fine.

I have seen this (and Cacharel Amor Amor) on the $19.99 rack at Shoppers Drug Mart, but maybe that’s just been to clear out the old bottles over the last year or two.


 

CACHAREL
Scarlett EDT

Cacharel Scarlett EDT 50 mL2009 | Honorine Blanc, Olivier Cresp, Alberto Morillas
Top Notes: citrus, tea, pear
Heart Notes: jasmine, orange blossom, honeysuckle
Base Notes: white musk, honey, sandalwood

Named for the character Scarlet O’Hara from Gone with the Wind, Scarlett is initially fairly pretty and clean-smelling, with bright citrus notes mingled with delicate white florals. It quickly turns into something musky and a little cloying—honey is often tricky for me this way.

I was quite surprised to see a tester for this older perfume at Shoppers Drug Mart recently! The adorable bottle doesn’t have anything written on it, and the box was nowhere to be found, so I had to squint at the tiny sticker on the bottom to figure out which fragrance it was.Read More »

Chanel Gabrielle 2017, Kristen Stewart

Perfume Notes (February 2018)

Hello everybody! Happy March. I’m back, and I’ve been huffing it up, again!

The full list for February:

    1. Britney Spears Hidden Fantasy
    2. Burberry My Burberry EDP
    3. Chanel Chance Eau Fraîche
    4. Chanel Gabrielle
    5. Guerlain Samsara
    6. Guess Marciano
    7. Jean Paul Gaultier Classique EDP
    8. Mugler Les Exceptions: Oriental Express
    9. Mugler Les Exceptions: Supra Floral
    10. Narciso Rodriguez Narciso Poudrée
    11. Rihanna Rebelle
    12. Van Cleef & Arpels So First
    13. Vera Wang Princess Noir

BRITNEY SPEARS
Hidden Fantasy

Britney Spears Hidden Fantasy EDP 100 mL2008 | Rodrigo Flores-Roux
Top Notes orange, tangerine, grapefruit blossom, verbena
Heart Notes clove, Napolitano cake, lily, jasmine
Base Notes vanilla, jacaranda wood, sandalwood, amber

I already own a few of the Britney Spears Fantasy perfumes, and thought it might be nice to add another when I saw Hidden Fantasy at Rexall for C$19.99. Amazingly, they had a tester out! The first blast is cherry-vanilla root beer, with a bit of fizz. Yummy, right? But the drydown comes quickly, and it becomes a somewhat generic, vanillic powdery floral. The scent doesn’t have much longevity.

I don’t expect that much from an inexpensive celebrity scent, but I found Hidden Fantasy to be more disappointing than the others I have. I won’t be adding it to my set.Read More »

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 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:

Read More »

Haulage! beautyBOUTIQUE by Shoppers Drug Mart (September 2016)

This Haulage! post also serves as Part 2 to Online Store Review: beautyBOUTIQUE by Shoppers Drug Mart (Part 1).

My order was placed on September 17, it shipped on the 22nd, and it was arrived to me in Toronto on the 23rd (5 business days), so delivery fell well within the advertised 4–7 business days.

Firstly, I want to mention that about a week after I placed the order, I happened to notice something while I was doing my weekly coupon-loading on Shoppers Drug Mart’s website/app (it’s totally worth it, by the way—I’ve racked up so many Optimum points using the personalized coupons they are constantly cranking out!). My Optimum Points total seemed unusually low, even considering the 95,000 points I had just redeemed over the weekend. Then, under my Transaction History, I saw this:

They’d deducted my redeemed points twice!

As I was already on the Shoppers Drug Mart site, I shot off an email to them via their contact form. Shortly afterward, I received an email saying my message could not be delivered because my Yahoo email wasn’t being accepted. Guys, it’s coming from your own web form. Then, a tweet came to nothing as they asked me to direct message them, and then, via DM, asked me to send them an email. I emailed, then they asked me to call in.

I suppose I could have just called from the start, but what on earth are web forms and email and other methods of online communication for, then? In the end, I had a light bulb moment and checked beautyBOUTIQUE.com, where I’d actually made the purchase. They had their own web form for contacting customer service, so I tried that. (Frankly, it was already 4pm and there were constant drilling sounds coming from an adjacent apartment, so I didn’t feel like shouting over the phone with a CS agent. Not to mention Peanut is very keen on talking to everybody on the phone, even if it’s not for him.)

Read More »

12 Perfumes I Want Just for the Bottle

I don’t normally post on weekends, but this post was all done and ready to go, and I haven’t posted much lately.

In the wee hours of the night, I stay up with my two-and-a-half month old daughter and try not to do any online shopping. Therefore, I end up doing silly things like dissecting nine different versions of a Middle Eastern cookie recipe to create one über-recipe or compiling long lists of things that probably only I care about.

Recently, I’ve had perfume and handbags on the brain—which makes more sense than you’d think, since so many fashion houses necessarily have their own lines of perfume, as well. What do Narciso Rodriguez, Stella McCartney, and Juicy Couture know about perfume? But everyone from Michael Bublé, David Beckham, Zara, and the Kardashians to Donald Trump, Ferrari, Minions, and 24 (yes, the TV show) has a perfume line, so really, none of it makes sense anymore.

(I don’t wish to seem like I’m slamming any non-perfumers’ perfumes—some of my favorites are celebrity scents! I just really wanted to mention the Minions again.)

The perfume and handbags combination then got me thinking about the design of perfume bottles, as surely fashion houses would care deeply about their products’ aesthetics. I’ve seen many bottles that are straight-up hideous and others that are sublimely lovely. It’s never really affected my purchasing behavior, as it’s what’s inside the bottle that really counts: I’m not toting my perfume around with me and wearing it around my neck. But still, I like pretty things, and there are some fragrances with bottles I’ve admired but I haven’t gotten around to adding them to my collection for one reason or another. Here are the top 12 perfumes I want just for the bottle (in alphabetical order):

1

BALENCIAGA Florabotanica

I love everything about this perfume, except for the way it smells. I felt that Florabotanica didn’t smell like very much at all, like a generic, vaguely scented bath product. Everything else about the fragrance—the name, the bottle, the notes (mint, carnation, rose, and vetiver, all of which I enjoy)—is screaming Buy me! so I feel I should probably revisit it. Perhaps—and I hope—my nose was just having an off day.

2

CHANEL N°5

It’s the world’s most iconic perfume bottle. (See the Andy Warhol painting above.) The fragrance itself isn’t to my taste, however. I’ve tried the eau de toilette—it opens like ginger ale, then sours like a lemon on my skin. Perhaps I’ll try the eau de parfum one day, but I do have and love 2007’s N°5 Eau Première, and that’s probably enough N°5 for me, even though its bottle is not quite the same gorgeous, chunky style.

Read More »