Taking My Sweet Time

I really enjoyed the post yesterday, and judging by the lively comments you all enjoyed it too!  I’m going to do a quasi-related post today which might be entitled, Yo, March, so where’s your review of [insert name of new niche perfume here]?

I can see both sides of one of the arguments put forth yesterday about what “should” be included in The Guide.  On the one hand, it seems to me that LT/TS set out to make it as comprehensive as they could, reviewing both niche and mass-market fragrances, and they made an effort to cover most (if not all) of a lot of lines they picked to review.  On the other hand, I think Tom’s point in comments yesterday is well taken, and it made me laugh so I’ll quote it here: “Pick and choose. Architecture critics don´t review everything from Frank Gehry´s latest to the addition to the public library in Ferd, New Jersey.”  I agree.  If Luca and Tania want to nitpick their way through a hand-chosen set of scents to review, so be it.  I’d be thrilled to read them.  I think having to find 200 new and different ways to say swill would take the wind out of my sails too.

Which brings me back around to … me (and doesn’t it always?  Sigh.)  Some of you must have noticed by now that the frantic pace of my reviewing has slowed somewhat, although I like to think that occasionally we’re trading quantity for quality, or at least a good laugh.  My explanation is that I’m just not as desperate to get my hands on, much less review, every new niche scent that comes down the pike.  And your response might be, so what?   Get on with it, perfume blogger!  So let me phrase my conundrum a little differently:  if the pace of my perfume testing and reviewing has meant that, for example, I have not worn Fendi Theorema once in the last nine months, well… that’s not a world I want to live in.

If I never bought another bottle of fragrance, or came home with another bag of samples, I already own enough fragrance right now to last me the rest of my life – and I know I own a lot less than some of you.  Guess what’s happened to me?  I want to wear some of these masterpieces, for an entire day or even (gasp!) two days.  Instead of trying one or two or five new things, I want to revel in the glory that is Feminite du Bois like a normal person who isn’t constantly looking for a new review angle.  At this point I have nothing new to say about FdB, and frankly I want my enjoyment of it to be selfish.  I don’t want to put it on and immediately have my mind drift to how I might write about it.  Eventually that starts to Feel Like Work, and that’s probably what happened to The Guide.

Today, as I type this, is a weird, overcast, gloomy September day that is still not cool enough to kill off the mosquitoes, and if I looked at it wrong it would be … well, depressing.  But it isn’t, because I’m wearing Fendi Theorema, a fragrance that still makes me literally tear up at its beauty, particularly if I haven’t worn it in awhile.  I have reached a phase in my perfume journey where I wouldn’t say that I’m any less enthused about perfume, I’m just approaching it a little less like a junkie looking for the next fix.  I want to wear and enjoy my really great perfumes, and – hey – where can I find a more sympathetic audience for that than on here?

So today, in lieu of the perfume review I did not write, here is a by-no-means comprehensive list, in no particular order, of some of the fragrances I’ve been wearing regularly because I have decided after however many years we’ve been together that they live up to every desire I have for a perfume.  Some of them I would put on a “Perfume Greats” list, and some of them are merely deeply personal great choices for me.  (It goes without saying, but I’ll say it: Mitsouko and vintage Femme would both be on this list, but let’s talk about something else for a change, shall we?)  Links go to my past review of each scent.

Shiseido Feminite du Bois.  A great.  I hear it’s been reformulated lalalala, I don’t want to know.  Buy the parfum stylos on eBay, if there are any left.  Gateway drug.  Less woody.  You will love me and hate me at the same time if you try the parfum.  Blame Louise.  As is so often the case.

Fendi Theorema.  One of those perennial discontinued perfumista favorites that I sampled, swooned over mightily, and unlike a lot of other things never fell back out of love with.  It is impossible for me to wear Theorema and be unhappy.  This one is Robin’s fault at Now Smell This.

Donna Karan Chaos.  Interestingly… this is the one on the list that can bite.  There are days when I deeply regret putting it on, it gets a nail-varnish thing going that makes me headachy.  At the same time, I can’t imagine life without it.  I bought my bottle on eBay for a ridiculous sum before the reissue (about which I have never quite made up my mind regarding its smell, feel free to weigh in).  If you are looking for a cheap fix, let me endorse the Irma Shorell Anarchy, which I feel is a great dupe, possibly better than the new stuff.

Worth Courtesan.  I have no idea; I can’t argue for its greatness, although Pierre Bourdon did it. I know it’s fruit salad on a lot of you.  Probably the closest thing I have to a signature scent in terms of repeat wearing.  For awhile I totally stopped mentioning it on the blog, because if it (inexplicably) became popular, even among perfumistas, I would feel pain.  Musky sexy goodness that has never overwhelmed me, and feels good whether I’m at the grocery store or a party. It’s me, plain and simple.

Dior Poison.  Both the death-by-syrup vintage EDT in the stoppered bottle, and the Grim Reaper-esque Esprit de Parfum, for those of you who believe, like me, that the EDT isn’t quite strong enough.  I wore this out in the 80s, ignored it for twenty years, and dug it up last year on a whim.  I’ve come to appreciate its homicidal beauty, although I understand and respect the feelings of those of you who wish it had never been created, and I am careful about where I wear it.  BTW a single drop from the tip of a toothpick of the Esprit is detectable at a level that can be correctly identified by alarmed bystanders.  Not that this has happened to me.

Annick Goutal Mandragore.  Yes, yes, I know – it smells like pee (or worse,) it lasts five minutes… I’ve heard the complaints.  On me it is a bright, cheerful ginger/herbal/grapefruit/spicy thing of reasonable lasting power and one of the very few bottles I have actually had to replace because I ran out, which in my world happens pretty much never.  Next time I’m getting one of those awesome square bottles.  Also, shamelessly begging — can anyone hook me up with a small sample of Mandragore Poupre?  I can’t get my hands on it, wah wah.

Estee Lauder Cinnabar (wait… have I really not reviewed this?!? hmm)  – I feel I should end this post with one of my wack pronouncements, which is: I believe everyone is either Cinnabar or Opium (or, okay, neither).  After several years of trying to decide, I am Cinnabar.  Clearly.  This decision was made for me by a vintage parfum flacon I scored on eBay.  I wanted to be an Opium girl, but Cinnabar is sweeter and less screechy on me, although by no means a shy thing.

Anyway, thanks for your patience.  Never feel you owe me a pity comment, I’m a big girl.  If you’d like to play along and name a few fragrances you’ve decided really are All That, feel free!

  • Nina says:

    I love fragrance and I have to admit, I can be snobby about 2 things- celebrity fragrances and Avon fragrances. Im sure its unjustified, but I just am biased.

    I am a music fan and review music, I have about 10000 songs I need to catalog and review. And like with you and the fragrance, i have learned to stop looking for new things and to take the time to enjoy the treasures I already have. Im also doing that with fragrance. I try maybe 50 a year, which isn’t too bad.And then I make myself select only the ones that truly make me happy.

    My list, which does include some WTF selections-

    Hawaiian Ginger by Calgon-
    Chanel Beige
    Casmir by Chopard
    L by Lolita Lempicka
    Hypnotic Poison
    Kelly Caleche
    Bulgari Black
    Bulgari Rose Essentielle and Pour Femme
    Coco Mademoiselle
    Cuir de Russie

    I have a fragrance for every mood and though I could add more as there are certainly more masterpieces out there, I like these and am content for now.

    Though Im sort of leaning toward adding the Goutal La Violette to my collection.

  • mals86 says:

    My All Thats:
    PdN Le Temps d’une Fete
    Shalimar Light
    Vtg Emeraude pdt or parfum
    Lyric Woman
    31 Rue Cambon
    Vtg No. 5 extrait

    It’s too soon to tell if Tabac Aurea should join the list, but it’s a possibility. Whodathunk I’d fall for this one?

    And re: Opium vs. Cinnabar, I’m definitely a NEITHER. (I might take Jungle L’Elephant, though. Tiny doses. In Bitter Cold Weather.)

    • March says:

      Vintage Emeraude was A REVELATION. Holy cow. NOW I get it!

      I’m fascinated that Jungle is popular somewhere warm in S. America I forget where. Rio? I keep thinking about it in the heat!

  • london says:

    Thank you Posse in general for some particularly interesting posts over the last few weeks. I’m in the phase of no longer needing to acquire everything new and trying to pare down my collection to things I love. Why wear something I just like when there are so many I love? But I do still want to smell the Francis Kurkdjians so badly it’s almost a hunger. And Patty is doing a pretty good job of convincing me on the VCAs and Kenzo UFO as well. And I did make a special trip to smell the Mandragore Pourpre and Magnolia Nobile so who am I kidding? I’m not “cured” yet.

    What I do think is interesting is comparing the classics (or your memory of them) to the new ones. For example, a scent by Issey Miyake and Cristalle EDT definitely have the same vibe (though I haven’t actually been able to try them together yet). Similarly, Chaos (new version) and Byredo Chembur. Does anyone else agree or am I just crazy?

    As for favourites I can’t live without, I have just as many old ones as new ones. For every Vol de Nuit, there is an Ellie. For every Nuit de Noel or Chamade, a 31, Rue Cambon or a Promesse de l’Aube.

    • March says:

      I totally agree about A Scent and Chaos. A Scent I reviewed on here and actually compared to Cristalle… and Chembur I was toying with buying except I decided it was enough like Chaos (of which I have plenty, plus a dupe) I didn’t need more right now…

  • Joe says:

    Just jumping in very briefly to say:

    – Oh yeah, you got me HOOKED on that gateway drug, baby… the FdB parfum stylo, then I had to have some EdP (or is it EdT?) as well. Beeeyootiful stuff… when it doesn’t go all hamster cage cedar shavings on me.

    – Mandragore: have loved it from the day I first popped the sample open. Green and fresh… makes me feel like I’m in one of those old York Peppermint Patty commercials… without the minty accord. Note that I am also DYING to sample that Pourpre thing. Let us know how it is as soon as you sniff it.

    As for what I’ve been wearing regularly… Hmm. A lot of them are just what my recently-acquired FBs are: Sienne L’Hiver, L’Eau de Tarocco, AdP Colonia Intensa, Hermes Eau de Gentiane Blanche.

    • March says:

      Oh! I was just thinking about you! I saw your comment on NST about Petite Cherie … because there couldn’t POSSIBLY be more than one Joe, right?, anyway, please please try it. Great pear.

      So glad to know I have you pissing away your money on the Stylos! HAppy to enable …. I think I have scored a wee samp of Pourpre…

  • Gail S says:

    I feel your pain, March. Don’t know if you’ve noticed, but I haven’t been commenting much lately. Not because I’m not reading the blog, but because I’m pretty much full up 🙂 My desire to try everything new is pretty much gone because I’m happy with a few favorites. Lately they are: TDC Jasmin de Nuit, Dior Escale a Portofino, LeLabo Patchouli 24, SSS Ambre Noir and PdE Osmanthus Interdite. Every now and then I’ll wear something else, but I generally regret it a couple of hours in……sigh….maybe someday the urge will come back. Meanwhile, I’ll be saving some money!!

  • fleurdelys says:

    I think I’ll always have a bottle of each of these fragrances around: Femme, YSL Paris, Bandit, Diorissimo, Bal a Versailles.

  • Sunnyfunny says:

    Well I’m no good at analyzing, anyway ;).

    I’ve sort of made it a point to wear my fb’s this summer (even as I went on a little vintage bender) and was pleased to note that two of my faves, Tabac Blond and Theorema, work well in the heat. Two others, Bal a Versailles and Chanel No. 22, did not. I’ve become a little shy about my sillage lately, I don’t know why. I wish I could like fresh, citrusy, watery ‘fumes during the summer, but I just don’t. My coworkers silently allow me to indulge myself, so, y’know, I will! 😀

    Anyway, Tabac Blond and No. 22 edt are keepers. I haven’t worn Bal since March or April and I seem to remember liking it enough to buy a big ol’ fb sometime in July, so that one’s probably a keeper, too. DH says Fracas and Tocade are.

    • March says:

      22 is so tremendous. And I think men mostly really like Tocade, it’s sweet and lovely.

      See, I adore Bal in the heat. Whole different animal than in the cold. It can really take the edge off our humid summer weather.

  • violetnoir says:

    Hey, babe, I hear ya!

    I loves me some Angelique Noire, Guet Apens, Le Labo Iris 39 and Poivre 23, MDCI Vepres Siciliennes and Enlevement Au Serail, Bois des Iles, Iris Silver Mist, Eau de Gentiane Blanche, and right now I am totally digging most of the AG soliflores and Mandragore. I started focusing more on enjoying my fragrances rather than accumulating more new ones about a year ago.

    But I have to admit, I will always want to test new fragrances, especially a new Guerlain or AG or Hermes or Bond No. 9 or Chanel or TDC, so that part of me will never go away. But I have become more selective in what I add to my collection. If I don’t absolutely love it, like I did MDCI VS last March when you were here, I won’t purchase it.

    Hugs and love! Sorry I have not responded as much lately, but I am very busy with work.

    • March says:

      You are allowed to be busy — and I don’t think I can respond to all these great comments either, I would be here for hours, and the family is expecting dinner ::Drums fingers::

      I wish I had a store like LuckyScent nearby. And all the other stores there, it would be great for sampling.

  • Rappleyea says:

    Preach on sisters! Great posts both days, Patty and March. March, I said the exact same thing a few weeks ago on NST – that I had been on a major sampling binge all summer and realized that I hadn’t worn my favorites at all.

    I find it interesting reading these comments that by and large, most of the And All That fragrances are the classics. For me I’d say vintage Je Reviens extrait, Vol de Nuit extrait, and Spiritueuse Double Vanille.

    OT, but March, have you noticed the Topsy not in Rue Cambon? I did the other day when I wore it, and it would NOT scrub off!

  • Tara C says:

    If I were writing a perfume blog, I would not want to spend more than 2 days a week sampling, otherwise you fall into that trap of never getting to wear your favorites, or just whatever you felt like wearing that day. What I do is sample first thing in the morning – I sniff something for an hour, then I shower and wear what I want to smell all day that day. And I love coming to PP every day to read your well-written and fun blog, no matter what the topic is. I’d be just as happy to read reviews of old favorites as new stuff. I’ve just spent the last 2 weeks cleaning out things that are not loves or are lesser-loved duplicates of things I have in my collection, and it feels good. I have so many perfume loves, but I think I could not do without Encens Flamboyant and L’Air du Desert Marocain. If I had to leave my house in flames, those are the two I’d grab.

    • March says:

      I think we are overdue for some more classics, maybe I’ll work that angle, I’m in the mood.

      It’s nice to have the blog back! I hope it lasts…

  • Shelley says:

    You know, it’s a good thing there are mirrors in the world…having one gives me the two faces I need. When I *think* of myself, and where I am comfortable, I am all about the living with a perfume. Inhabiting it in a few seasons. Coming back to certain ones that challenged or eluded me, to see if perhaps one of us –or perhaps more accurately, my nose– have changed. While I don’t think I will ever have a single Holy Grail, I *love* having a set of scents that are totally and completely in my wheelhouse, if for different reasons.

    That said, I need to point out that a) I have books coming out my ears. I hate sending books away when they are done. I love having a library. I love to scan the titles and just think about what’s there, remember not just experiences, but sometimes contexts…even how certain ones smell… So you can imagine that this desire to keep and catalogue, combined with sniffing binges, means that when I turn the other face, I have to admit that I have a LOT of vials and decants and potions that represent nothing than liquid experience and memory.

    But to go back to my truer self, the mindful embracing of certain scents…resting comfortably in my wheelhouse are: SL Chergui * DK Black Cashmere * Guerlain Eau Imperiale * PdN Sacrebleu, Le Temps de une Fete * LZ Journeyman (my leather) * FM En Passant * PG Bois Blond * Yves Rocher Voile d’Ambre (now there’s affordable wallpaper!) * Bois des Isles * Jacomo Silences * Magie Noir (usually).

    There are others, like 31 Rue Cambon, that I love wearing, but (so far) still feel like I am wearing them, rather than them being more “me” than “put on,” as a rule.

    I adore Feminite du Bois, am too scared to call it a “me.” Dunno why. Also ♥ Mandragore. Musette gets my vintage Femme, on the rare occasion I score; I’m more Madame Rochas. Which, like Arpege, I can happily do in the current iteration, thank goodness.

  • sweetlife says:

    Poppping back in to add — you told us about your discovery of Cinnabar in parfum in the midst of a bigger post about a trip to NYC with Patty. I remember you describing it as “the scent I would want my children to remember me by.” I’ve been bidding on mini’s of the parfum every now and then ever since. Haven’t won one yet, but someday I’ll get to smell it…

  • CynthiaW says:

    I’ve worn fragrance since I begged my mom for my first bottle of Sweet Honesty at the age of 5, but I’ve only really gotten into fragrance in the last few years. Even so, I find myself tapering off the sampling to wear the stuff that I love (hence, the 60 or so untried sample – blerg).

    There are definitely days that I try sniff something new and it doesn’t pass my – is this more beautiful than No. 5 parfum, Joy, L’Heure Bleu, Mitsouko? And the answer is no most days and then I don’t buy anything. Other days, I don’t care if it’s the most stunning thing ever and I buy a bottle of Stetson or CK Summer just because.

    Then there are the days that I decide to sample again and sniff something like DelRae’s Debut, Hermessence Vanille Galante or Le Labo Fleur d’Oranger 27 and I’m just blown away. So, while I have my true loves, I would hate to give up sampling and take away the chance of finding a new true love.

  • sweetlife says:

    What a lovely post (again), March. I had a lot of reactions to yesterday’s discussion. Too many to actually respond to it. Your post gives me a chance to say this: For me perfume is about CONTEXT. The street I’m walking down, the work I’m trying to get done, the friends I’m with, the missing beloved I am remembering, the courage I need or the abundance of joy I want to share. The reason I’ve ended up with so many perfumes is that when I happen to wear exactly the right thing at the right time I can’t imagine anything more beautiful.

    Sometimes, it’s true, the perfume comes first. I try it, and love it for itself (or maybe that is the perfect moment?). But even then, there is often a moment, later, when I’m wearing it and am bowled over in a way I never was before, when I “get it” in a completely new way.

    I’m a close reader, and re-reader. I repeat and repeat, enjoying nuances and facets. I am as susceptible as anyone else to the drool-worthy descriptions that pop up on the blogs, and thank goodness, or I wouldn’t have found half (two-thirds? 99 percent?) of my true loves, but there are scads of samples waiting for my attention while I enjoy some new turn of phrase in Paestum Rose or Bois des Iles, or any of a half-a dozen others. Even when it’s love at first sniff it takes me a long time to feel like I truly understand something.

    This is part of why I don’t post as often as I’d like to on PST, and why I so rarely write reviews at all. Although, dang it, this response is long enough for a post all by itself, innit?

    Thanks again for your thoughtful work, all of it, and enjoy your beauties.

    P.S. I LIKE Madragore. But you’re on your own with the Courtesan, babe.

    • Disteza says:

      “For me perfume is about CONTEXT”
      Amen to that. I can’t imagine how boring, nonstimulating, it would be to have to rely on the same fragrance to see you through life’s up and downs (or hot and colds). Isn’t better to have many paths to explore, and re-examine as the whim strikes?

  • Aparatchick says:

    First, not a pity comment at all – I always look forward to reading PP. The subject doesn’t have to be a perfume review for me to enjoy it.

    While I’m sorry LT isn’t going to continue reviewing, I completely understand. I’ve seen this happen to other people when whatever it is that they enjoy morphs into work.

    This conversation comes at a good time for me. I’ve been giving a lot of thought recently to paring down. I received the sample collection from Ineke a few weeks ago, and that box is still sitting there looking at me reproachfully. And I want to sample from it, but I also want to just wear and enjoy the fumes that I know I love.

    And in that “I know I love” category (and I’m not including the ones I love that have been, alas, discontinued):

    Andy Tauer L’air du desert marocain
    Ava Luxe Bois de Figue
    Chanel Coromandel
    Kenzo Jungle Elephant
    Rochas Femme
    PdE Ambre Russe
    PdE Osmanthus Indite
    PdN Sacrebleu
    PdN Juste un Reve

    Hermes Un Jardin Sur le Nil
    Annick Goutal Songes

    And what would I do without the ones I don’t wear often, but love to have around to sniff: Ava Luxe Café Noir, CdG Zagorsk, CBIHP In the Library and Russian Caravan Tea?

  • Disteza says:

    I’ve never felt th need to sniff it all, so my sampling has been fairly tame; I feel the longer I’ve been sniffing the more often I find that the newest thing is in fact a retread of something of which, if I liked the original, I probably already own a bottle. There are some lines in which I will try every new release, others I may never try based on previous experience. That’s my line, and I’m stickin’ to it.
    I’ve got some real beauties that I rarely wear (Shalini, a split of Bolt of Lightning, the ridiculously potent oudhs), simply because such things need to be reserved for a truly special occasion. My comfort scents are beautiful to me in their own ways: Tea for Two and Quiet Morning are my baggy T-shirt scents, the spicemarket and incense-y Serges are always in heavy rotation, Sous Le Vent, Turtle Vetiver, and the flowery Hermessences are my light cologne options (I’m sure some of you are a little :O right about now). And then there’s my butch babies: Olibanum, Black Tourmaline, Yatagan, Victrix, Sycomore, Spiritus; and of course my oddball lovelies: Tubereuse Criminelle, Jubilation 25 (the men’s), Cepes, Tosca, Borneo.

    • March says:

      I deleted your repeat. I have no idea.

      I like your list. You know … I am beginning to regret not putting Bal on mine. What was I thinking?

      Bolt of Lightning. Sigh. When my decant is gone I might have to buy some 🙂

      • sweetlife says:

        Well when you’re ready for that BoL give me a holler, pretty please. I’ve been hunting for a decant–at split prices, please, which are quite high enough–for a long time now.

    • carter says:

      Yay, Tubereuse Criminelle and Turtle Vet! I could easily have those and Manoumalia on my list.

  • Gretchen says:

    Neither a Cinnabar nor an Opium. What’s more, I don’t want to keep a vast stable of scents– just several great favorites to appreciate in different moods and seasons. Of course I want to sniff to educate my nose and to know what’s out there to replace a favorite that becomes–sob!– unavailable. Here’s what I now ask myself: do I like this almost as much as I do Chanel no22 (“as much” is probably impossible)? If not, I don’t need to have it after the sample is done. The keeper list so far: no22 parfum, no5 parfum, Divine by Divine, Guerlain Plus que Jamais, and some strong probables like Delrae Bois de Paradis. For hot weather, it’s Delrae Eau Illuminee and EL’s Aliage and PCTG. I’d love certain vintage scents too, but the search and expense are getting me down.

  • BBJ says:

    I’m still a sniffing newbie, I guess–only been at this about a year, but:

    Bois des Iles, Chanel No. 19, Parfum Sacre, Feminite du Bois, and my gloriously overpopular Clinique Happy, the only fruity floral I can stand.

  • Scent Hive says:

    I hear you on wanting to just be with a fragrance rather than analyze.

    What I’m loving right now:

    Kelly Caleche: a leathery transparent floral that lingers like a diaphanous scarf

    Ajne’s Fleur Blanche is my go-to gardenia perfume. I have not found a gardenia that compares.

    Enfleurage’s (in NYC) tuberose butter is to-die-for heaven. When I first smelled it, I wanted to weep over its pure beauty. It’s ephemeral, but the 20 minute hit off this stuff is soooo worth it!

    FM’s Carnal Flower Buerre Exquise: My sample might give way to a full jar purchase real soon. (Can you say Barney’s Bag Event this weekend???)

    Strange Invisible Perfume’s Moon Garden gets me in the gut every time with its resinous plumeria weirdness. Not for the faint-of-heart.

    And I am in full agreement with FdB. It’s woody, fruity, spicy floral perfection. Luckily I don’t need to bother with the reformulation as I have plenty of stylos and a gorgeous bottle of the original to last me a long long time.

  • gwyneth says:

    I look forward to reading PerfumePosse EVERY day. The writing is top-notch, intelligent, and witty. What’s not to like? Your blog is a treat for me, and I’m selfish enough to hope that the Posse continues. My main interest in coming here has been to read about perfume, however I have been happy to read about lips, nail color,and anything else written. I don’t post very often, but I read every word, every day.

    The bottom line is that I ADORE fragrances. I like to read about the new ones, but I’m just as happy to read about a favored fragrance that is well loved, but not necessarily niche or new. The possibilities of interest are endless, and I seem to be endlessly fascinated. Another part of this blog I appreciate is the comment section where I am always enlightened, entertained and informed.(You have some wonderful “regulars” whose comments are delightfully entertaining and sometimes are snarkily pithy – LOVE IT!)

    When I discovered the world of internet blogs and fragrance-related sites, my collection of bottles increased at an amazing rate. I was like a kid in a candy store, such that even as I was grabbing bottles, I was looking around for more, and MORE. I’ve begun to realize that I should slow down my acquisitiveness so that I can enjoy the fragrances I own. I have a smallish “stable” of favorites that I take great joy in wearing — several favorites from Chanel, Guerlain, Caron and Lutens — (but still, I’m always ready to grab another great fragrance if it crosses my path.)

  • Meliscents says:

    I’m with you! Lately, the idea of trying to keep up with ALL the new fragrances coming out just overwhelms me to no end! I’ve also been going through the endless bottles I already have and re-introducing myself. My husband supports my decision to stop buying & start using the embarrassing amounts I already have. Although I fell off the wagon when I picked up a bottle of Stetson at the discount store. I know, Stetson, of all things? But I’d read some interesting reviews aboout it and surprisingly, it’s kinda nice. Nothing complicated AT ALL just a sweet, simple amber scent that just says comfort. The ones I always fall back on though are:
    • Chanel #5 (standard, classy comfort)
    • Miss Dior (I now have the lotion to go with. Too Nice for words)
    • Estee’s Azuree (a brisk, sunny pick-me-up)
    • Mitsouko EDP (sure to be my next full bottle purchase)
    • JOY EDP (a cloud of roses. Heaven!)
    • Guerlain’s Vetiver (my “happy” scent)
    and last but certainly not least
    • Opium (scored the perfume a while back. Vacation in a bottle)
    • Magie Noir (gorgeous, patchouli “funk”)

  • AWench says:

    I have a lot of acquaintances but only a few close friends.

    I’ve not long come back from a short break to Antwerp. While there I visited a sweet little perfume shop off the main square, called ‘In Fine Perfumes’. They have an entertaining schtick where they line up about a hundred different bottles of their in-house perfume, with no notes listed, and the customer sniffs their way down the line, choosing about six, then spritzing these down to the final choice. All great fun. I lurved the perfume I bought – Guadalajara. But, by the time I got home, I realised that it was a slightly soapier doppleganger for the bottle of Femme that I already owned.

    Femme is clearly my go-to perfume… and I don’t at all mind having another bottle of juice that shares many of the same qualities. There are only two others that I will rebuy when I run out: Eau des Merveilles and Apres L’Ondee.

  • Patty says:

    Balance is important. If I were writing more than 2x a week, I’d just throw up my hands because I’m pretty sure my love of perfume would get lost. Lots of days it’s just hard to think of what to write about. Nothing thrills you or moves you, but you have to talk about it. I assume everyone can tell when we are just writing a review so the blog doesn’t go dark that day. 🙂

    With that, I have enough time to wear the things I love, and I couldn’t possibly list them all here. I love lots of things, and they change too based on season, what’s out there. Some new things become loves. Byredos went into almost daily rotation during the summer. So did the Prada exclusive things. they’re in the outfield again, but just because I’m busy with other fragrances like the VCAs, which delight me.

    i still get excited about new launches, but I’m less hopeful. I think it’s like finding love. The older you get, the more reality you have under your belt. You remain cautiously optimistic, but do not expect it will happen easily or conveniently.

    Apres L’Ondee. If a week goes by that I can’t wear it, I’m very distressed. It grounds me. Diorling vintage parfum. don’t need it as often, but do need it regularly. Kenzo UFO still has me wrapped.

    Those are just things to wear. I have a whole other list of things I just want to sniff, but don’t really want on me. Pretty strange stuff.

  • MJ says:

    Frankly, I am with you. I have about 10 all time faves and I think that is enough, with occasional side sampling. I just want to feel happy because I smell good.

    Word! on Chaos/Anarchy. I think this is a great anytime/all purpose scent. Wearing it today because I’m a little casual at work, and weather is ‘eh’ and nothing else seemed right. Took it on a 10 day vacation once and it fit every place and time. Might take it on a biz trip to Chicago tomorrow because, again, it fits anytime/anywhere and won’t offend at my business meetings (though, let me tell you, if I can escape and find Exclusifs I’ll come back smelling like a 200 ml multi-flavored French ho).

  • Nava says:

    I’ve never been bitten by Chaos, and I’ve been bitten many times in my life. 😉

    I completely agree about quality vs. quantity, but I have this perverse need to smell whatever is new out there. It calmed down for a while, but now it is as voracious as ever. Why? Maybe to assuage my guilt/stupidity/shamless snobbery about coveting niche and hard to find scents. As for LT/TS, I try very hard not to take other peoples’ opinions as gospel. Investigate on your own, I always say; and I’m all for picking and choosing.

  • Francesca says:

    One of the things I love about this blog is the quality of writing from everyone. Just wanted to get that out of the way.

    Some of my can’t-be-withouts:
    The aforementioned Annayake Miyako; 31 Rue Cambon; AG Eau du Sud;SL Un bois en vanille; Idole (Yaaaay, I’ve got it on today and can’t wait to smell it wafting when I take my lunchtime Pilates class; Promesse de l’aube; FdB; vintage Jolie Madame; and as I am sure many of you are tired of hearing from me, The Party in Manhattan.

    • March says:

      Idoooooooollllllle. You and me, babe. The two of us. Me: PIM, not so much, although I love it. It is VERY ripe on me. However, I am happy that something makes you so happy! I am surprised how many mentions Miyako got on here today.

    • Sandra says:

      Hi Francesca, whare do I get a vintage sample of Jolie Madame?I read about it in Turin- Sanhchez book. Must be good if it’s her ‘I f I only get to have one’ parfume choice …Thanks

      • March says:

        Sandra — I think The Perfumed Court has vintage samples (you can email and ask them; their blurb says “original formula,” not sure if that means vintage). Otherwise the only way I know to sample the vintage is to score a bottle on eBay. The good news is they tend to be on there pretty regularly, at not astronomical amounts of money, and they’re often in the square display box, which means they were shielded from light. The bad news is obviously: it’s vintage. Any given bottle may turn out to be crap…

      • March says:

        PS Full disclosure: blogmate Patty is a seller on TPC. I always feel like I should say that …

  • Fernando says:

    I’m new at this game, only a few months, so I still feel that there are a million things out there that I haven’t smelled and that one of them could be added to the “must use often” list. I’d say Habit Rouge is on that list, L’Air du Desert certainly is, and Montale’s Black Aoud. Maybe New York and Timbuktu.

    But I’m clearly still looking; for example, I’ve never tried anything by Serge Lutens, and I’m curious about such things as Muscs Kublai Khan. I would like to have more Guerlain Derby to experiment with. I can’t figure out why Yatagan doesn’t smell anything like what other folks describe when I put it on. I don’t understand why so many men’s perfumes seem so incredibly boring.

    It’s a lot of fun to be learning a whole new world. Even if I probably already have enough perfume for some ten years of use…

    As for your writing, I think you’re doing the right thing. Blogging about perfume needn’t mean reviewing new perfumes, after all. I love to read about old loves and other thoughts, about shopping sprees and wacky promotional packages, and about why Luca is wrong about the B never line (which I haven’t tried either). Thanks for being so consistently interesting.

    • mals86 says:

      I feel very much the same regarding reviews – that they need not be “the new whatever,” they could be something like, “My deep and ongoing love for Poison, why I love it, what happens to my day and my emotions when I wear it, yada yada…” and I’d be happy reading that. Even though I despise Poison (sorry).

      But I’m another newbie. I’ve only been doing deliberate sniffage for about ten months now, and I’m still working my way through classic and vintage (minis from ebay, yay!) and wearable mainstream, and the occasional niche. I’m in no way jaded yet, and while that may be partly because I’m so new to this, I think it’s also partly that I’m sniffing a wide range of things, from Bath and Body Works Ditz Juice to Sortilege (SOTD, very nice, why’d they discontinue this thing?) to SSS Tabac Aurea, which knocked me for an emotional loop.

      If I may suggest, I really would love to read some Golden Oldies reviews here. Sure, I could go read what’s been posted on basenotes about, say, Rive Gauche – but I wouldn’t get the *stories* there. And that’s what I really love: the “it gave me zits and made me want to eat a Blizzard” story, or the “it made me think of sunlight on the frozen trees, that perfect balance of hope and sorrow” story, or the “it smells the way cold fireplaces do in the summer” story.

      Um, unless that would be even more stressful. I don’t expect literary gems every time – but reading about some been-around-forever perfume that you really love would be terrific. Just sayin’.

      • mals86 says:

        And of course if it’s simply that blogging about perfume isn’t fun anymore… well, stop. I’d miss it, very much. But I’d hate to think that it would become drudgery.

        • March says:

          Nono, no drudgery! I think P and I had our Honesty Hats on this week… I just felt like talking about the pressure I put on myself, and acknowledging that I’m not reviewing five new scents per post or what have you. I want to enjoy perfume too, not be constantly digging up something new … lord, having a moment here with Diptyque John Galliano. I love fall.

      • March says:

        I keep coming back over here and reading these … man, these are great comments. I wish it wouldn’t jump to the bottom of the page, though! Hey, hate Poison all you want! More people on your side than mine…

        I love doing golden oldies. I feel more pressure — there’s research involved — and the (marginally) sucky thing is, usually I recommend trying to get ahold of an older bottle, the vintage is often better than the new, but that’s a crap shoot too. But you’re right, those are some of the finest fragrances I own.

  • Melissa says:

    My relationship with fragrance goes back to my teens, although there were years during which I owned only a couple of bottles. Having been in full-tilt obsessive mode for, um, a good while now, it’s hard for me to predict when or if I will abate. My hobbies/obsessions/whatevers often last for years and years. But if I could only wear what I now own, my collection would still outlast me!

    I continue to enjoy and even crave new scents, especially when I read an especially positive review. CC’s recent review of Lumière Noire pour Femme by Kurkdjian made me smile in both delight at her description and anticipation of the scent.

    Many of my All Thats are older/vintage/pre-reform frags, such as Mitsouko, vintage Miss Dior and vintage Femme. Then there are Ferre by Ferre (the older one), Cuir de Russie, No 5, No 22, and Liu. But, I also adore Amouage Jubilation 25 and Neil Morris Vapor (aldehyde lovers only) which are relatively new. I’m happy to continue sniffing and discovering.

  • Oh noooo my previous comment got eaten?

    Either way, I also wanted to say that I agree and feel similarly. Also I notice that after I smell and review a bunch of new scents and then go back to the old ones that I love (in between the bursts of new releases, they seem to all get clumped together) I usually have a new dimension of understanding and appreciation for my True Scent Loves. That aspect of being a perfume blogger is awesome.

    • March says:

      I dug you out of the spam filter. you were literally the only non-spam comment in there, I have no idea why. have you been a naughty girl? Thinking impure thoughts?

  • mals86 says:

    After reading today’s post and comments, on top of yesterday’s post and comments, my heart is full. I’m going to have to go and ponder awhile before I post anything.

    Let me just applaud you Posse People again for your emotional honesty.

  • Stuff I keep coming back to and loving, for fall:

    Lalique – Encre Noire
    Tom Ford’s Japon Noir
    Chanel Sycomore (yes, I’m a such a vetiver head)
    Poison! I love it too.
    SL – Rousse (but I am OUT! cry! such a beautiful dry cinnamon dusted sandalwood on me.)
    Chanel No. 22
    Montale – White Aoud (OUT of this too. More cry!)
    Comme des Garcons 2 (how can you refuse incense and silly putty!)
    EL – PC Amber Ylang ylang
    EL – Sensuous

    I’m surprised at how much I like the newer EL’s given everything else I like is kind of weird and dark! and not a Guerlain to be had. Apres L’ondee occasionally. I do love Mitsy Fleur de Lotus but wear that more in the spring/summer.

  • Hilary says:

    Although I am only a year into my perfume hobby, I feel much the same way at the moment: a real pleasure in the (10 or so) scents I have, and a satisfaction in using them, wearing them, and living with them. I haven’t been playing much with my sample box recently, and much of what I’ve tried in shops recently hasn’t grabbed me as much as (some of) what I have at home, despite the novelty factor. So, my list of what I can’t promise I’ll love forever, but love very much now: L’Heure Bleue, Mitsouko, no. 19, Bois des Iles, and Parfum Sacre.

  • Kathryn says:

    Just catching up on the past two day’s posts. What a great discussion!

    I love it that you and Patty consistently write about figuring out what you love and what is fun. That’s a great approach to reviewing and to life in general, I think. From a reader’s point of view, it sustains my interest far more than chemistry, history, abstract hierarchies of taste, or snark.

    As for me, I would be content if I could wear only Attrape Coeur, Bois des Isles and Cuir de Russie, but will shed a tear when my last drop of Seve Exquise is gone. However, I am still at the point of discovering all kinds of wonderful new (to me) scents and am glad to be still in a state of relative ignorance of all that is out there.

  • Catherine says:

    March, Patty, everyone: great posts, comments, and stories. It made me realize I’ve been skimming reviews of particular scents for a number of months now. But these posts I’ve been reading slowly, drinking in every word. I haven’t been sampling anything except a few Chanels for maybe a year, and I haven’t missed it. I haven’t thought about it. But I would love, and have loved these days, reading about which perfumes mean something to a person. Maybe I’m just saving myself for all the chaos of Sniffa. I’m sure all that sampling will tide me over for another year. Still, I have this feeling I’ll be bringing home just the bottle of No. 5 Eau Premier that I’ve been lusting for since April. I have a hard time seeing myself returning with a bottle of something that grabbed me by the throat and yanked out my wallet. Why? Because what could do that more powerfully than my loves:

    Mona di Orio Carnation: I feel like I’m wearing it all the time, even when I’m not, I’m so connected to it right now. Two back-up bottles. I want more.

    Mona di Orio Nuit Noire: Sorry, March, but it’s the bomb. I’m waiting for an extra-special, hot-to-trot night with my beloved to break into my one-of-three back-up bottles. I need more. I need a lifetime supply. Mona, honey, if you’re ever reading…bisous!

    Chanel No. 22: I don’t know…I can’t describe…I think this must be what angels feel like going through the clouds.

    Chanel No. 18: Peace, Serenity.

    Le Parfum de Therese: Sex. Sex in a French garden with a heaping feast on a nearby table. (I take this one camping, LOL!)

    And I could go on: Les Larmes Sacrees de Thebes, OJ Seraphim, Iris Ganache. Yes, with all this goodness at my fingertips, sampling isn’t happening. So content.

    (Remind me about that at Sniffa)

  • aubrey says:

    As a loyal/desperate reader who jumps out of bed and literally runs to the computer to see what you gals on PP have to say each day, I just wanted to say that I loved today’s post. I’m sure a lot of your readers are newbies like me, and there’s nothing wrong with reminding all the readers of the “must sniffs” rather than writing about some new frag that didn’t float your boat. (at the same time, I realize that the review of new frags is a must; readers need the balance of new content) But do you really have nothing new to say about your true loves? Couldn’t you re-review and compare how (for ex) a new frag that you reviewed last week doesn’t really compare to an pre-existing frag that did it better, and why? I find that dual testing (one frag on left arm, one frag on right arm) really gives me a new found appreciation for them both (or sometimes makes me realize that one is never worth wearing again)

  • ScentRed says:

    I’m pretty new to the perfumista party, but have found myself in a similar state of mind. For several months I literally felt panicky if I didn’t have a new batch of exciting new samples somewhere in the postal system. My last order to TPC was not all new samples (OK, I did order samples of Natori, Bois de Champagne and, coincidentally Theorema) but rather larger decants of some new found loves.

    For now, I’m enjoying the comfort of wearing scents I know I’ll love vs. the elusive chase for the next great find. My current go-to list includes:

    Iris Nobile
    Divine by Divine
    Eau de Cartier
    Mandarine et Basilique mixed with AG Neroli
    DK Gold
    Narciso for Her
    AG Eau de Sud
    OJ Woman
    OJ Frangipani (although I’m almost out of this – anyone doing a split of the travel size 😉

    And I’m anxiously awaiting a mid-sized decant of Bois des Iles which I spritzed at the Chanel Boutique a few weeks ago and can’t stop thinking about * Sigh!*

  • Frenchie says:

    Some of my All Thats are:

    Mitsouko parfum
    Feminite du Bois (Shiseido version only)
    No.5 parfum and edt
    Bulgari pour Femme
    Parfum Sacre
    Jungle L’Elephant
    Cristalle edt

    I have to say I admire you perfume bloggers for your enthisiasm and love of perfume. I know that writing about it would turn it into a chore for me. It is too bad that Turin and Sanchez feel they have to stop with the Guide but I can understand. Maybe they will change their minds and go back to it after they had a break. Someone has commented here that perhaps not everything deserves to be mentioned, that choosing certain perfumes for reviews is key. I agree. I’m not very interested in reading about the latest thingy that hits the stores.

  • Fiordiligi says:

    I could never be without my “proper” Guerlains, which have been part of my life for almost (gulp) 40 years, starting with Apres l’Ondee through to Chamade. They are the mainstays of my perfumed life. I have countless bottles of all of them, thank goodness, to weather the reformulation tides.

    I think that in the realm of perfume reviewing, there is ample room to set aside the latest nebulous creation brewed by the fairies in somebody’s back garden and available only when there is an R in the month (if you get my drift) and instead revisit the greats, whether they be my (and many other people’s) beloved Guerlains, or more recent creations such as Diorella, Poison, etc. The young ‘uns, after all, are unlikely to know many of the greats these days, it seems to me.

  • Louise says:

    I think, maybe, that I am, almost, pretty much, um, slowing down on my quest for new scent kicks. Not quite sure, though 🙂 I do find myself unmoved by almost all of the new scents I try, and I try many fewer than I would have several years ago. I won’t go so far as to call many “dreck”, but very few move me. I will sniff the VCAs today, to see if I am now made of stone. Or my nose, rather.

    Something is shifting, though-I have gone a few days at a time unscented of late, or with a slap of fragranced body creme.

    So, I’m going back to some of my oldies-this choice motivated by new-scent fatigue, a desire for reliability (my work is unpredictable enough), and the horrid discovery that several of my older scents have either started to fade, or have gone entirely to vinegar. Must wear what I have…

    My frequent wearer list now includes:

    Black Cashmere, because it always just works. And I love it. But only the older version.

    FdB-you know why! Hey, and weren’t you the gal, Marchele, that whined that all cedar smelled like B.O. or wood shavings or pee or some such nonsense? Go on, blame me, but I was there when you first “got” this beauty-in edp. It was such a delight to see your conversion 😉

    Bois et Fruits-a variant of the above, of course, but so friendly on its own, or layered with other Boyz.

    Neil Morris Vapor-the aldehyde/honeyed almond floral is just working soooo well for me-I’ve worn is several days at a time, too.

    Bois des Iles-especially in the older EdT (one bottle of which is fading). BdI never fails to move me, please me, comfort me. And I blame you on this one-I first rejected it (unused to aldehydes), til you commented how nice I smelled while testing it. And you were right, totally correct, dewd!

    • March says:

      I did, I did! I whined that it smelled like hamster cage or something … gah, what an idiot I was, what is wrong with me?!?

      BC smells amazing on you. I can’t remember, what did we decide about New Chaos?

      I’m so glad I enabled you on the BdI.

  • hongkongmom says:

    i am too much of a chameleon….i love too many some older, some newer

    here r a few

    feminite de bois, fumerie turque, daim blonde,borneo
    31 rue de cambon, bois de isle, attrape-coer,plus que jamias
    kelly caleche;jardin sur la nil
    narccisis noir in extract
    oh no i haven’t even mentioned the iris’s..older guerlains
    i have just discovered ambre gris looooove and am waiting for the new jolie madame and cuir de lancome to arrive from fragrance net

    i am so thankful too for this wonderful world of scents!!!i find it as soothing,and creative as abstract painting!!!if not more

  • hvs says:

    work is a four letter word! i have the smiths on the brain. and annayake miyako in my nostrils. it smells like gold. pacific tibetan mountain temple cures stomach aches and nerves with its ginger punch, and christian lacroix tumulte homme makes you feel like you just stepped out of a (cedar) magical wardrobe. i’m thankful for all of them.

  • nancy says:

    I’ve owned different perfumes during different phases of my life, and smelling them can bring on strong memories. I have seasonal perfumes that smell best at certain times of the year or weather. There is one perfume that has gone the distance in years and works across the seasons for me, and that is Fracas.

  • carmencanada says:

    I’ve been blogging twice or three times a week now for a year and a half and I know what you mean: I spend more time sampling than wearing my loves, or even my really-likes. It’s a little early in the morning here in Paris for a definitive list, but I’m with you on Féminité du Bois, totally.
    To which I would add:
    Une Fleur de Cassie
    Mitsouko (pre-reform)
    Chanel Cuir de Russie
    Bois de Violette
    N°5 Eau Première
    I’m sure a couple more will spring to mind when I go off to work…

  • Kim says:

    Opium woman here! – but it’s not on my short list of perfume perfection. That is reserved for the perfumes that I can wear no matter how tired or how busy I am, no matter where I have to go, and that make me want to sniff and capture the beauty all day.

    Chanel No 5 parfum – skank, jasmine, aldehydes – sigh. And always my choice if I had to pick only one.

    Chanel 31 Rue Cambon – a soft chypre – who knew it could be done?

    Guerlain Mitsouko – soothing peach chypre

    Guerlain L’Heure Bleue – my hot weather go-to perfume (yah, yah, I know but that anise note sure works on me!)

    Guerlain Shalimar – vanilla with a major edge

    And my new found loves YSL Cinema (comforting spices with the undercurrent of my favourite black tea when I open the tin in the morning – go figure but that is what I get) and Chanel No.19 (galbanum and iris – yowseh!). And in the presence of all this perfume perfection (here and above) I can totally understand how a critic/blogger/writer would want to stop the train and get off – there is only so much swill a soul can take in the presence of these beauties!!

    As for Poison… let’s just say I think it aptly named (insert Mr. Yuck emoticon)

    • March says:

      31 RC is STUNNING. I guess that’s the one I’d want a bottle of, if they were offering. Which they aren’t. 🙂 Hey, re Poison, I think there’s lots of folks who feel more like you than like me.

  • Natalie says:

    Believe it or not, I’ve never understood why people complain about Poison; I always thought it smelled unique and fantastic in its evil grape juicy way — although perhaps I was too busy reeking of Poison myself back in its heyday to be bothered by it on others!

    Being miserably short on cash, I reign in my perfume spending by measuring everything I smell against what I consider my gold standards: L’Air du Desert Marocain, Bandit, and Philosykos. If what I sniff isn’t as good as those three — even if it’s in a different fragrance category — it doesn’t make the cut. One day when I’m flush I’ll have scads of sharp green scents, but for now, nothing stacks up against the big B. For snuggly comfort, meanwhile, very little rivals Philosykos, and as for L’Air, I just want to writhe around in it like Kate Moss in a limo…

    • aubrey says:

      Loved this comment!

      I agree two fold: it’s brilliant to compare new loves to your own personal “gold standard” before purchasing (I think I’ll try this idea for budgeting) and also– “writhe around in it like Kate Moss in a limo”. LMAO. Freakin’ brilliant comment.

      (and yay for Philosykos lovers!)

    • March says:

      More Philosykos lovers!!! I lurve me some figgy fig.

      DANG the blog is loading slow today.

  • carter says:

    Ha ha, how many times does a clock strike eleven? Two! An hour so nice I wrote it twice!

  • carter says:

    I love this, March, because I feel the same way about wearing what I love and not wanting to be distracted by other things having to do with keeping up with what’s new, what I *should* be sampling, finding some hidden gem, and on and on. As for blogging about perfume (or anything, really), I could never do it and I have often wondered about this very issue. When I was working in the film business I would go to see a movie and sit there in the darkened theater analyzing the bejeezus out of what was up there on the screen, and when I came out it would suddenly hit me that I had no idea what the plot was.

    Years later, I was on the verge of signing on the dotted line to spend two years at the Culinary Institute of America and decided against it at the 11th hour because the thought of having the same thing happen while I was cooking scared the crap out of me and I decided not to enroll at the llth hour. I am like that with a lot of things, and I sometimes wonder whether it is just a rationalization for not wanting to be pigeonholed, but I honestly don’t think so. I don’t want to risk losing the joy. I understand how you feel so well, and yes, it does tie into what was being discussed yesterday beautifully. “200 new and different ways to say swill”, indeed 😉

    As for my list of scents that “live up to every desire” I have for a perfume, I am not going to bore everyone yet again by waxing on about vintage Bandit and Jolie Madame, those are my top two and I think that everyone here knows it. Apres l’Ondee extrait is perfection. I am going to add Habit Rouge extrait to the list — I just think it’s wildly wonderful. Hommage Attar, ditto. And Iris Silver Mist. Okay, done!

    • March says:

      Yes, we can’t let our passions for subjects ruin our passions… which is the danger for me with the reviewing sometimes. I hear you on the plot; and cooking school would ruin cooking if overdone, wouldn’t it?

      • carter says:

        Probably not the school part, which at times I do regret not having done, but after that — the working as a chef part. For me, anyway. When something becomes routine and there are expectations involved, it’s not fun anymore.

  • tmp00 says:

    I understand the sentiment- and I only write once a week. Sometimes I think it’s painfully obvious when I’m tossing one off; heck sometimes I admit it. But I still love finding new stuff so it can be worth it, and I hope that people enjoy reading it. After all, you said you laughed..

    Today it was the quintessence of California September. Morning foggy and in the 60’s, afternoon bone-dry Santa Anas and 98 downtown, at 8:50 it’s 65 and foggy in BH. I wore Le Labo Vetiver 46. Hello, old friend Vet! Cmere for a hug!

  • Erin T says:

    Thanks for the Anarchy endorsement! You have probably mentioned it before, but I don’t remember twigging on it…

    • March says:

      Worth a look, if you’re not digging the new and not interested in the vintage. I never looked on eBay to see if the rerelease affected the vintage prices.

  • pyramus says:

    March, I know just what you mean about it feeling like work: on the one hand, I want to keep trying new things with an eye towards blogging about them, but on the other, I sometimes just want to wear the old favourites, even the same thing, for days on end. And the blog starts to feel like work, and I don’t want that, because I do it for my own pleasure.

    My All Thats, the ones that when I wear them make me think (madness!) that I could wear nothing else for the rest of time, would have to include:

    Mitsouko; I’ve always love chypres, and this one is really at the top of the heap.

    Ambre Précieux: staggeringly good amber-sandalwood. It always makes me smile giddily.

    Clinique Chemistry: faultless, classic men’s scent.

    Perry Ellis Reserve: ditto.

    Halston Catalyst for Men: cloves, cloves, cloves. Fantastic.

    Caron Coup de Fouet: oh, such carnations!

    I think there are probably more, but six will do.

    • carter says:

      So nice to see Amber Precieux on your list! That doesn’t happen very often and I think it’s a great choice.

    • March says:

      Coop de Phooey! It always makes me smile … yes, this can’t turn into work. And I am always glad to meet another fan of Mitsouko.

  • monkeytoe says:

    La Myrrhe: my desert island fragrance. The smell of angels singing William Byrde.

    (Vintage) Rive Gauche: both comfortably everyday and irretrievably gorgeous.

    Apres l’Ondee: The smell of a broken heart mending. Sometimes almost too bittersweet to wear.

    Yatagan: Mitsouko’s spiritual brother. Beautiful, scary, sexy, endless.

    CDG Odeur 71: The smell of Kraftwerk only sexier. David Bowie singing cabaret.

    Chanel Cuir de Russie: Is it possible there is a human being this doesn’t smell good wearing this? I propose a study.

    Chanel No. 22: The smell of my safe house. The smell of my aunt Margaret.

    • carter says:


    • mals86 says:

      Lovely list, monkeytoe, and such succinct, emotional descriptions – I applaud you.

      I recently discovered La Myrrhe, and while I don’t need a full bottle, I definitely neeeeeed a decant. It smells like healing to me, and there are days I need that. (Not a lot of people out there who know William Byrd, but I do. And you’re right.) OTOH, I may be that one human who stinks in Cuir de Russie – it smells of barnyard (manure, raw hides, and dirt) on my skin.

    • Scent Hive says:


      re: Apres L’Ondee “The smell of a broken heart mending.”

      Are you my soulmate? Stunning description!


    • March says:

      Yep, these descriptions are wonderful. So agree with Apres.

    • BBJ says:

      I actually don’t like Cuir de Russie. God knows, I wanted to. But all I get is baby powder, and below it, baby skin, which creeps me out. I guess I should try it again. I have leather issues.

  • You know, my dearest of darlings…..

    I have never quite figured out what in the hockey sticks you see in Courtesan – which is probably a good thing. That you, who love the other Keepers, love this – well, it does my heart good. I don’t feel so alone…. See, I have a love of citrus, as you prolly know (and I always feel vaguely ashamed of that love)..and well, I hate Hermes, as you DEFINITELY know.

    So it pains me to say that my guilty summer pleasure has been Pamplemousse Rose. Who would’ve thought I would like such a fluffy little bubble of a fragrance?

    As my malaprop pal would say ‘oh, the Ironing!’ 😀

    If you tell anybody I will have to kill you

    Other than Mitsouko and Femme (I have now joined the Backup Bottles Brigade on those two- it’s sick), here goes (these are the ones I actually wear all the time)

    Jolie Madame (vintage)
    Arpege (vintage and current – vint is way warmer)
    Schiap Shocking/Bal – interchangeably crazy after all these years – Shocking makes me giggle and Bal makes me want to put on face powder, find a gorgeous, buff man and bite him! Go figure.

    Vintage Coty L’Aimant (I have a lot of it and I love it. It’s a little friendlier than No5 but retains that glassine edge)

    That little gem, Agraria Bitter Orange. I am one of about 3 people on the planet, it seems, who get such joy from this. Good! More for me!

    It’s soaking-wet here, everything smells like moldy old socks – I’ll have to go look for a warm fragrance – my ATs are anything but warm…

    xoxo >-)

    • Melissa says:

      I’ll never wear Bal again without thinking of face powder and fangs!

    • March says:


      Musette, I can see you liking a fluffy bubble of a fragrance, why not? No shame in that. And you and I share some favorite classics.

      Hey, I told you there’s no justifying Courtesan.