I was enjoying the group diss of Danielle Steel´s new fragrance on Scentzilla and Perfume-Smellin´ Things, when I got to thinking: are there any celebrity scents I really like? For the purposes of today´s post I´m not counting scents released as brand extensions by fashion houses like Juicy Couture or Betsey Johnson; I´m talking scents by people who have nothing other than their own name to offer. I decided to do this off the top of my head, so tell me what I´ve missed.
Cumming – a shining example of a perfect celebrity scent. I have no idea why Alan Cumming wanted his own fragrance, but he hired Christopher Brosius to come up with a stunning, weird, wearable mélange: (lifted from his website) “leather, peat fire, highland mud, burnt rubber and white truffle ground the scent with rugged sensuality, while the core notes of cigar, heather, Douglas fir and rubber contribute to its sharpness. The fragrance is completed with spicy top notes of bergamot, black pepper, Scotch pine and whiskey.” I love this thing. I´ve heard it described as a winter comfort scent, but to me it has the aura of sex with drunken, debauched men, an interest Alan and I share in theory if not in practice. If you click through, you can watch Alan prance around wearing eye makeup and nothing else in his hilariously salacious video. Bonus: ancillary skincare products (Cumming in a Bar, Cumming All Over, etc.)
With Love … Hilary Duff. Notes (via Sephora) are: Mangosteen Fruit, Exotic Spice Blend, Chai Latte, Mangosteen Blossoms, Cocobolo Wood, Amber Milk, Amber Musk, Balsam, Incense. I was startled by the scent chosen for this teen queen´s debut – a rich, nutty, milky comfort scent rather than the fruit cocktail you´d pretty much expect. I like it so much I figured it´d be a flop with its target audience, which definitely isn´t me, but when I asked at pre-teen emporium Claire´s (where they have it on display) she told me it´s been a huge hit with the girls, although she admitted that, oddly, “a lot of women are buying it too.” When I finish off my generous sample, one of those women will be me. Excellent lasting power, and look at that pretty bottle. I was not surprised to see this on several fellow bloggers’ lists of winners in 2006.
The J. Lo oeuvre – go ahead, sue me. There are so many now I´d have to hit Macy´s (or the drugstore) to brush up, but I think my favorites are Miami Glow and Live. The truth is, though, it´s splitting hairs – they all smell like tanning oil on Miami Beach. (According to my local Macy’s and another mall shop, Live is their best seller in the line.) Genius perfumery? Nah. But fun.
SJP Lovely – Notes (via Nordstrom) are: lavender, orchid, amber, apple martini, paperwhites and musk. Okay, I can barely smell this. But the part I can smell is a nice, elegant musk that is surprisingly sugar-free when compared to the competition. She actually worked hard with the perfumers on this one, according to the articles I read when it came out. While it´s not something I´d necessarily pick to wear, I wouldn´t laugh at anyone else wearing it.
Ines de la Fressange – okay, this is a bit of a stretch, because I´m not sure she´s a celebrity – I think she´s a French model and, for awhile, Karl Lagerfeld´s muse. Notes (via The Perfume Connection) are: blackcurrant, bergamot, white rose and lily of the valley, musk. I´ll be honest: I don´t know why I love this so much. It´s outside my usual range of perfumes in that it´s, let´s face it, a fruity-floral. However, the blackcurrant and musky drydown are charmingly bittersweet rather than cloying. I´m a bit puzzled because most of the websites show a squat, dull bottle; the one pictured here (from Sephora, which no longer carries it) reflects the loveliness of the juice.
Passion by Elizabeth Taylor – Notes (via Perfumebay) are: Gardenia, Jasmine, Lily of the Valley, Ylang-Ylang, Rose, Musk, Indian Patchouli, Sandalwood, Incense, Cedarwood, and Moss. I´ve now accosted two Women of A Certain Age to ask what wonderful incense fragrance they were wearing, and both said Passion. It smells like hell on me, though; maybe my skin chemistry is wrong? Or maybe I need to buy a bottle and tuck it away for 30 years until I´m mature enough? I´ve never had the nerve to smell any of the rest of her line.
Kate Spade – okay, she does clothes now, but to me Kate Spade is bright, whimsical (and expensive) stationery, china, handbags and home products. Anyway, I think there were several scents: Kate Spade, Beauty, Classic Pearls, and Winter Blossom. Notes (swiped from eBay) are: honeysuckle, jasmine, gardenia, tuberose, and fresh muguet. The differences, if any, among the scents elude me; what I remember is an elevator-clearing ode to white flowers, particularly gardenia and muguet. It/they are all discontinued, so I guess sales were poor, but judging by the prices these things go for on eBay, the line has its hardcore followers. Did I love it? No, but I admired it. It was over the top — mean and green and different. When I went back to get some last year, it was gone.
And that´s … about it. So. Fess up, I´m not going to laugh – I mean, look at me with my J. Lo fetish. Do you have a celebrity scent secret addiction you´d like to share? Is there some fabulous, obvious thing I missed? Should I have included Carlos Santana?