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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 have a stash of perfume samples from various orders this year and definitely need to try them out. I started with Maison Margiela 'REPLICA' Autumn Vibes . I have to start by saying that while I've always found Maison Margiela fragrances interesting, I've never found one that I love enough to want to purchase, except maybe By the Fireplace.

 

Autumn Vibes started off crisp on my skin, but then it got a little musty before turning sweet with a hint of spice--like a hot mug of rooibos chai. Eventually, as the fragrance started to fade, I felt like I was transported to a small town antique shop, since my wrist smelled like discarded objects and wooden furniture from past eras. Finally, more woodsy notes appeared, and I found the intended memory of stepping on crunchy leaves on a crisp, fall day. Boy, that was a journey.

Re: The Perfume Challenge

@txcatx I love perfumes that have big changes through the notes! I' m not sure I'll be keen on old books but I'll have to try this one out.

Re: The Perfume Challenge

Thanks for the review, @txcatx !  I haven't heard too much about this one, especially considering how excited so many people were about it's release.  I'd still like to get a sample just because of your sensory journey--that is way too good to pass up!  🤷‍♀️

Re: The Perfume Challenge

@txcatx Love this description ❤️

 

Re: The Perfume Challenge

@txcatx Is this one you would purchase?

Re: The Perfume Challenge

@Samtian This one is a maybe. It actually reminds me more of old books than the library fragrance that Maison Margiela also has, and it's starting to grow on me. My favorite one is still Maison Margiela ’REPLICA’ By the Fireplace 1 oz/ 30 mL Eau de Toilette Spray which I think smells like marshmallows roasting in a bonfire.

Re: The Perfume Challenge

So the past few days I have been wearing Atelier Cologne Vanille Insensée Pure Perfume  . I love Atelier but find many of them do not last very long on me and this vanilla is pretty basic. So the next day I mixed Valentino Donna Yellow Dream Eau de Parfum 1.7 oz/ 50 mL Eau de Parfum Spray  with the Atelier Vanilla Insensee. It was okay but at the end of the day I realized I had been looking for Atelier Cologne Lemon Island Pure Perfume with the above combo and had to laugh at myself a bit. The day after this I wore CLINIQUE Clinique Happy Rollerball 0.34 oz/ 10 mL . I have tried this before and didn't relish it but it came in a set and figured I'd give it another whirl. It sprays on very citrusy. More so than most citrus style fragrances I've tried. More than I remember also. The dry down to this I actually enjoyed. Not quite the rindy opening but more the inner fruit mixed with much of the white lining just beneath the rind. It has a touch of vanilla? but for me this is a mostly citrus scent. I wouldn't call it a favorite but I might just keep it. And maybe mix it with the Atelier Vanilla Insensee. Although I am suspecting the Atelier Vanilla Insensee is mild enough that it won't be able to stand up to the opening of Clinique Happy and won't last long enough to pull through on the drydown. Yesterday I wore Viktor&Rolf BONBON  It is very sweet but not quite the heavy candy smell I was expecting. It has a heavier? earthier? Ambiance of? sweetness to it but no where near sickly. I am going to wear it again soon to see how much I truly like it. I have  a dauber but I think I need to break out any little 1.2ml sprays and really give it a whirl all over the place. It lasted a decent amount of time, more than an hour or two. At least four

Re: The Perfume Challenge

@Margalee It's good to revisit perfumes! Sometimes I find I can pass judgment too quickly when certain fragrances can take a few wears for you to get them.

Re: The Perfume Challenge

@pocketvenus  There are a couple, such as HERMÈS Twilly d'Hermès Eau de Parfum # and HERMÈS Eau de rhubarbe écarlate Eau de Cologne 1.7 oz/ 50 mL # that initially I did not like. I think they were just strange smells. Not the perfume style that I was used to. They are why I give perfumes a second try at a later date.

Re: The Perfume Challenge

@Margalee For me, I was too quick to write off certain perfumes as boring. And sometimes the opposite happened, I would really like a fragrance at first because it was new and unusual but over time I'd realize that it wasn't something I'd want to wear regularly.

Re: The Perfume Challenge

@txcatx Today it's a blast from the past with Liz Claiborne. It's very floral and very long lasting. If you don't like the old fashioned civet blends you probably won't like this perfume. 

Re: The Perfume Challenge

Sunday I sampled two Estee Lauder perfumes. Beautiful Belle with a heavy gardenia and Beautiful Magnolia. I was surprised at how much brighter and youthful Beautiful Magnolia was to me. Maybe the word Belle connotes a younger woman and Magnolia connotes the Old South in my mind. I did feel like Belle was a much more mature and earthy fragrance while Magnolia was conveyed youth and fluidity. Belle is tea in the parlor, warm with indoor lighting and Magnolia is a day out meeting friends in the fresh air and sunshine. Both are pretty but the strength for both on opening border on nose tweaking. Once they settle in they back off a bit. I do like that Beautiful Belle keeps that gardenia base for hours and doesn't become completely musky. I'm obviously no expert but possibly the difference in these two are the types of gardenia and musk used. Belle to my nose has the traditional musk usually found in department store fragrances and a heavy, earthy gardenia. Magnolia has Illumina musk and solar gardenia. 

Yesterday I sampled DefineMe Kahana. I do not prefer this fragrance. I love that it has an aquamarine crystal in it. I get the fresh note from this that is in many fresh fragrances. It is the reason I do not like most fresh fragrances. I'm guessing it is the blonde woods. I like all the other notes listed on the box although the out front hibiscus combined with white orchid could be pushing it over the edge for me. It does settle a bit but does not have not enough of a switch in notes for me to enjoy the fragrance. I might wear it occasionally for the benefits of aquamarine but it will probably be gifted to someone who can fully enjoy it.

Today I am wearing Kate Spade (Kate Spade). It's fruity and floral. It's sweet but not too sweet and it's not heavy at all. So far it doesn't seem like it will last any where near as long as the three other perfumes but maybe because it's a much lighter fragrance. It makes me think of spring and summer evening parties on the patio. Sixties parties. hmmm..

Re: The Perfume Challenge

Today I am giving #Yves Saint Laurent Black Opium another chance. When I initially smelled it in Sephora a couple years ago it smelled good but was overwhelming. There was a "perfumey note" (ie not fruity, floral, musky) that was a trigger. I have a mini so I tried it again. The initial scent is lush fruit. I don't remember this part in Sephora. It was more spices. And more intense. The fruits fade quickly into a somewhat powdery amber sort of smell. In about five hours this is powder with a hint of warmth and little projection. There is something about Black Opium that I like and I really want to like it more but it is a bit of a nose tweaker. That's a deal breaker for me since I hate having a red irritated nose.

Re: The Perfume Challenge

@Margalee - Maybe you tried the intense version the first time???  I agree with your description of Black Opium.  I don't wear it very often because a little goes a long way.  It's not a migraine trigger, but it's not a good one to wear if I feel like I might be headed that way.

Re: The Perfume Challenge

@Titian06 Possibly it was the Yves Saint Laurent Black Opium Eau de Parfum Intense #? It was spicier for sure. I thought maybe the DS was the Neon because the DS is much fruitier than I remember but it's not the Neon per the box. Next time I'm in store I'll have to smell them. I have noticed that many times samples either have notes wear out or the company skimps a bit on them. The Chanel Mademoiselle Intense I sampled was so spicy (and mainly spices) it was incredible. It didn't have much in the way of floral notes. I was surprised when I got to the store to purchase it. haha I eventually caved and bought it.

Re: The Perfume Challenge

You're right, @Margalee .  The Black Opium intense is the Neon.  I don't know why intense means spicier.  To me it means the same scent, but stronger smelling--it smells like lemons, now it smells like LEMONS (not spicy lemons).

Re: The Perfume Challenge

@Titian06 I wasn't intending that. The Neon says it's fruity. The extreme is the spicier one. I had to go back and check. haha  Sorry for the confusion.

Re: The Perfume Challenge

@Titian06  Yeah that "intense" interpretation is a curve ball. Oddly enough, I've noticed some of the scents I don't care for I actually like the intense versions.

Re: The Perfume Challenge

Today. I am wearing Donna Karan Cashmere Mist Eau de Toilette. It comes on a bit strong but breaks down quickly. This starts off with the perfume of top notes and cedes to the warm, musky heat that makes me think of snuggling in a fresh from the dryer blanket. Sort of like a dryer sheet before use and then after it's been through the dryer cycle. This is not a cotton scent at all. Just a radiating warmth. I can tell it's toilette because that lovely radiating scent quickly fades into a barely there skin scent in an hour and a half. I am glad to have to have the top note scurry away but wish the radiating warmth hung around for a few hours.

Re: The Perfume Challenge

Hi, all! I tried a couple of perfumes yesterday and today.  Yesterday, I tried #Atelier Cologne Vanille Insensée Pure Perfume 6.7 oz/ 200 mL Pure Perfume Spray.  I was a little concerned about trying this perfume since vanilla is a migraine trigger for me.  The good news is the vanilla in this perfume is warm, not the overly sweet kind.  This scent reminded me of the way your house smells when you make sugar cookies at Christmas.  However, it was minimally noticeable and only lasted maybe 30 minutes.  Later when I was smelling my wrist, I didn't detect anything specific, but my skin had a "my skin but better" scent to it.  This lasted for several hours.

 

Today I'm trying Armani Beauty My Way Eau de Parfum .  It starts with a light citrusy scent.  After it dries down, it has a warm floral scent.  I really had to douse myself in this perfume to get a somewhat noticeable amount of fragrance.  It seems to have more lasting power than many of the perfumes I've tried, but then I did put a lot more on.

Re: The Perfume Challenge

@Titian06  My Way has a watery feel to me something like Acqua di Gioia has to it. My Way is strong enough for me but there is an intense version that has come out that people say is definitely intense. Maybe try that one? Armani Beauty My Way Eau de Parfum Intense