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The Perfume Challenge

Do you have a box full of perfume vials and/or a vanity covered in perfume bottles? Are you the Goldilocks of perfume, just looking for the perfect signature scent? Do you want an opportunity to post daily about how your perfume of the day smells oaky and smoky with hints of blackberry and currant, like a cigar in a whisky barrel rolling through a Mediterranean orchard on a breezy summer morning?

 

If you answered yes to any of the above, or you just want to hop on board for the ride, join us for a 31 days of perfume challenge starting January 1st! Some of us from the 25 days of lipstick challenge wanted to continue the fun and exploration, and since many of us have so many perfume samples, we thought this challenge would be perfect. If you don't have 31 perfumes or hate everything that doesn't smell like Meyer lemons and fresh goat cream, that's fine--we're just aiming to use the neglected perfumes we have laying around and incorporate them into our perfume rotations.

 

And if you want more perfume vials, there's no better time than now to take a peek at Sephora's samples section.

 

Edit: Anyone can join in at anytime! We're here to support, live vicariously through, and encourage everyone in their olfactory adventures!

Re: The Perfume Challenge

I wore Vanille Galante Hermessence today. This probably fall on the category of fragrances I find really interesting, but probably will never own a full size bottle of it. Thankfully the Hermessence samples are generously sized.

 

For me this is a sunny salt water fragrance with banana (possibly the ylang ylang) and vanilla - not dessert like at all. It's an uplifting sheer veil of fragrance.

Re: The Perfume Challenge

@modernwarpaint @Amakened 

Tried Kilian's After Sunset today. It's a fairly generic fruity floral. The opening lychee note is fairly realistic and gives way to berries. You can buy a nice fruity floral designer fragrance and save your $$. My favourite of this line is still Princess, the marshmallow one.

 

 

Re: The Perfume Challenge

@pocketvenus 

Glad you got to try this one!

I did find it a bit overpriced for a 'fruity floral' (but then again I find most BK fragrances overpriced, I do love Straight to Heaven and really like Moonlight in Heaven though ). 

Re: The Perfume Challenge

@pocketvenus  thanks for the follow up and review. 👍🏽 I ended up with FB of Princess, and the more I wear it the more I can discern the green tea note. Currently I’ve been really into Montale Ristretto Intense Cafe (surprisingly, it was one of my least favorite at first) and Parfums de Marly Herod.  

Re: The Perfume Challenge

Tried Malle's Rose and Cuir and I think it's fantastic but will not be a best seller for the house. The rose is very much like rose geranium. It's fresh and bright with a touch of berry that gives way to a spicy pepper. This is paired with a leather that is assertive, sharp, shadowy, smoky, and bitter. It's not an easy note to pull off. They play off each other as the scent dries down but the leather is in the spotlight for the majority of the scent. I would not have taken it for an Ellena scent but it does bear the simplicity and tension of his earlier fragrances. His Hermessences, which similarly pair two contrasting notes or qualities like Epice Marine or Vetiver Tonka, have been described as a haiku and I can see that logic at play here, but there's no limpid, quiet contemplation with Rose and Cuir, it is a tenebrous, noire-ish drama.

Re: The Perfume Challenge

@pocketvenus I just wrote a lengthy response to your post, but it didn't go through *loud sigh*. I will keep it short.

 

Thanks for sharing this, love JC Ellena fragrances and even when I don't love them enough to own I truly appreciate his work and approach to scents. I totally get the haiku  reference when it comes to vetiver tonka too.

 

I love scents with leather (really like cuir d'Ange) and can't wait to sample this one !

 

 

Re: The Perfume Challenge

Today I tried a couple vintage Hermes scents I bought off eBay, Bel Ami and Caleche. Both seemed like the citrus notes had gone off but the dry down for Bel Ami was still gorgeous. Fuller and richer than the present formulation. Really good. Both reminded me of perfumes I smelled when I was very young.

Re: The Perfume Challenge

I’m layering perfume today and wearing Miss Dior with V&R Liquid diamonds.  Between the bergamot pink pepper and roses in the Dior and  the rose, pink pepper, ylang ylang and jasmine in the liquid diamonds it makes a gorgeous combo.  2EAE90A5-34B3-400E-81DE-0BF85875A0FB.jpeg

 

Re: The Perfume Challenge

Sounds great, @heartsmyface !

Re: The Perfume Challenge

Tried the new Ambrosia flanker for Gucci Bloom today. It's a denser, sweeter, creamier version. I much prefer the original.

 

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Re: The Perfume Challenge

Tried Lancome's Idole and Prada Candy Night today on paper.

 

Idole smells like drugstore shampoo. I mean, shampoo smells nice too but you can save your money and just buy shampoo.

 

Was really surprized by Candy Night, it's just like a chewy dark chocolate toffee. But not suffocatingly sweet. If that's your thing, give it a shot!

 

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Re: The Perfume Challenge

@pocketvenus   Idole smells to me like grandmothers.  I used up the whole vial trying to like it but I don’t think it’s for me.  It’s somewhat comforting in small doses. 

Re: The Perfume Challenge

Trying Byredo's Slow Dance today. It's a sweet ambery scent, pretty tame and nondescript. By Jerome Epinette, the same nose behind Byredo's Eleventh Hour, Bal d'Afrique and others, as well as the houses Floral Street and Ellis Brooklyn.

Re: The Perfume Challenge

I was given a sample of Eleventh Hour which I never bothered to test on my skin. Upon smelling it, I realize I was too dismissive and didn't give this scent enough of a chance the first time around. It opens with a well-balanced combination of tart apple, earthy fig, sweet woods. Heavier than is typical for the house with a sweet and woody dry down. A nice wear for the fall.

 

barneys-new-york-byredo-eleventh-hour-eau-de-parfum-2

Re: The Perfume Challenge

@pocketvenus 

I own this one and love it! (I love the name and inspiration behind it too - I always had a flair for the dramatic lol). I purchased when I was in France, so significantly cheaper than on our side of the pond. 

Re: The Perfume Challenge

@pocketvenus ooh this one sounds lovely.

Re: The Perfume Challenge

@Samtianyes, it's totally wearable! Though my bottom line is at Byredo's prices, I'd rather buy something more unique or buy something versatile from a cheaper house.

Re: The Perfume Challenge

Tried Valentino's Born in Roma. It's a totally generic fruity floral - a pass for me.

Re: The Perfume Challenge

Have been pretty busy lately and not able to try a lot of new perfumes nevermind report back on them! Here's what I tried this weekend

 

  • Le Labo Bigarade 18. A new city exclusive release for Hong Kong. To be honest, I thought this was awful. The opening was a typical heady neroli-tangerine but the drydown was all dense and horrible white musks. It gave me a headache. To give a counter review, Perolaise found this fresh and a great, long-lasting cologne. I personally found it overbearingly loud and amorphous, not at all fresh.
  • Le Labo Tabac 28. I definitely liked this one much more. Slightly spicy and not overly sweet. Gentler in sillage and far less long lasting than Bigarade.
  • Saje Shanti. A gorgeous fresh jasmine with a little spice. The only problem is, it doesn't last at all. It's barely noticeable after 60 minutes. Hilariously, their stress relief remedy rollerball last longer.

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Re: The Perfume Challenge

Oh my.  Today I'm wearing Montale Ristretto Intense Cafe, and when I initially tried this, I did not care for it at all.  But I revisit fragrances quite a bit, and all of my full bottles (with exception to JM Wild Bluebell) I initially did not like.

 

This is the first Montale I've tried, and it has changed my mind on my idea of rose and coffee, both notes which I generally do not veer towards.  This has a robust espresso opening and soon the rose notes push through with a perfect blend.  The coffee is not so distinct, but rather blended so well and it evokes a deep rose scent.  I smell the amber and musk moreso at dry down.  It's classified as gourmand, but I don't think it's overtly sweet or edible.  I envision myself at a Parisian cafe, outside w/ my espresso, surrounded by rose bushes in the late fall.  There's a romantic, French like vibe I get from this... like a woman who is classy, yet not overdone, a simple beauty.  However, I can see this as unisex, even with the floral aspect.  Performance and sillage are incredible, as I would expect from an Extrait concentration.  $210/100mL

 

Montale's website states, "Intense Café Ristretto opens with a perfect waft of fresh brewing coffee that will take your breath away. The flourish of the coffee bean is paired with a fresh, vegetal rose. The two combine for an unexpectedly dry and refreshing top note.As the coffee softens, a vanillic white musk emerges, slightly sweetening the brew with just a hint of cream and sugar. This addictive and surprising gourmand is suitable for both men and women and is the perfect fix for the coffee addict in all of us."

... and I agree.  This is worth sampling.