Guest Post: Lelong pour Femme

Lelong pour femmeby Musette

Sharry Baby  – on Vacation ?

If you were a water buffalo would you wear a clock?

Beats me, but they both grace the bottles of  Lelong pour Femme, lookin´ kinda goofy.  Unlike a lot of vintage designs (Chanel & Guerlain are uppermost in my mind), the LpF bottle has stumbled over into camp (the parfum has an actual working clock on?  In?  the bottle…well, I´m going to just leave that alone, though I am giggling at the lame-o explanation for the clock.  You can go to the Lelong website and giggle along with me.)

But the perfume?  Oh, baby!  Sharry Baby.   This is some luscious stuff.

Now I´ve got an earwig (those of a certain age will know this ‘wig).  Dang.  And the worst of it is, it´s a bubblegum earwig – the exact opposite of what Lelong pour Femme is all about.

To quote the Lelong website: This unique floral oriental fragrance melds bright mandarin and bergamot, which add a sparkling effect to the rich top notes of magnolia flowers, garden lilac and Kadota Fig Intenscent. The timeless beauty of jasmine, rose de mai, tuberose, ylang ylang, and iris is highlighted with the distinctive signature notes of sharry baby (there´s that damned earwig again!), orchid, purple cattleya orchid, and white cattleya orchid. A smooth oriental background of creamy sandalwood, vetivert, oakmoss, and musk completes these fragrances.

Okay, “Kadota Fig Intenscent” just sounds goofy; but in the pantheon of Goofification, that´s paltry, so I´m going to let it pass, along with the clock and the water buffalo horns.

Because the scent is a silky, sensuous delight.  Lelong pour Femme.  For me, it was a stealth introduction –  a lovely and generous lady sent me a little vial of vintage Vacances but we all know that you´d have to boost about 6 Lexus rims to pay for a bottle of that stuff.  So…to keep me out of jail (and broaden my limited horizons), she also sent me Lelong.  Wasn´t that nice of her (have you noticed that nobody in the perfume world ever has a 12-step program?  Instead, it´s like a half-step program.  Can´t afford X? C´mere, sit by me and try Y.  It´s only half a mortgage payment!  Wicked enablers!  Wicked!)

Anyway, because I am an idiot I waited awhile to try it, sure that nothing could touch Vacances.

I wuz wrong.  But it didn´t come over all at once.  For awhile I thought of Lelong as Vacances Lite´ (because I was hoist on the Patou petard.  Patou is Patou but who the hell was Lelong?  Hey, I have my snobby moments just like the next alien but, you know, it´s something quite different and deeper.  Where Vacances really is all white-hot sunlight and clanging masts in the harbor, Lelong is the waning of that day – what happens when you come back to the villa after a day on the yacht.  Vacances´ yachting whites are off, you´re apres-bain, sipping an aperitif and the midnight blue evening gown awaits.  The room is aglow in golden light and the blue-black sky is the perfect foil for the lights of the harbor beyond.  You´ll be back to the seaside in just a little while, enjoying that delicious shiver as his dinner-jacketed arm slides over your bare skin as you glide across the dance floor, open to the summer evening…

<ahem!>…….okay.   I´m okay.  Really.   Just give me a minute.  Okay.

I can´t figure out why they are so similar in smell – Vacances´ notes (per Jan Moran via Sali @ Pink Manhattan, thank you both) are:

Jean Patou Vacances (1936 Floral Oriental)

Top Notes: Hyacinth, hawthorn, galbanum,  Heart Notes: Lilac, mimosa,  Base Notes: Musk, woods

There is some overlap, especially the lilac, but not enough to explain their strong resemblance.  Most of the lilac scents I´ve smelled are pretty evanescent – is it possible for lilac to hold its own in both of these scents – enough to allow for their differences to recede?  I´m so confused.  Vacances is green and eager.  LpF is more golden and relaxed. To pay homage to that stupid clock, Vacances is 10 and Lelong is 8:30 p.m.  I wore Vacances to death back in the 80s but at that age could´ve never pulled off LpF – it´s pretty but it´s definitely an adult perfume.  I can´t imagine Vacances in the cold weather, Chicago in February would suck the soul right out of it.  Lelong´s got an extra bit of oomph, which lets it hold its own in frigid temps (I wore it today.  Its 24F.  It did just fine).  It´s not a winter comfort scent, in my opinion, but is definitely a scent I can wear in the winter when I want to recall the clanging of masts in the harbor.  And the midnight blue evening gown.

And  all those Lexus owners can breathe easy!

Ps.  Orchids? – if anybody can tell me what a Sharry Baby orchid smells like, I would love to know.  I´m sure it holds the key to all this… and it might help get that bubblegum earwig out of my head!  Thank you.

  • Abigail says:

    Sharry Baby is always described as chocolate, but to me it always smells like Dr. Pepper. It is most certainly sweet, but it’s not a hot cocoa smell by any stretch. Maybe more of a cherry cordial?

    Anyway, they are very easy orchids, and usually affordable – the only warning is they grow very fast!

  • perfumegeek says:

    That bottle sure looks funky. It reminds me of Queen Amidala with her fantabulous head gear.

  • Ninara Poll says:

    I must say, the second I saw the image of that bottle I started thinking. “Hey, that could be a prop from one of the Stargate TV series!”… then I couldn’t decide which one. But honestly, can’t you imagine it in the background of some really cheesy sci-fi show that doesn’t have a great budget and thinks the best way to represent an alien culture is to have something oddly shaped and tortoiseshell-patterned?

  • Louise says:

    Late to the party, Musette-but this is a fabulous post 😡

    I sniffed the Lelong long ago…and must revisit 😉

    Hugs to you!

    • Musette says:

      Hey, darling! Late is better than nebber! And I would LOVE to get your revisit. Scents like Lelong are my defaults. Well those and gin ricky types like Cartier VI. The perfume is extremely tenacious (and the body creme/cream is one of those perfect ones that translates the scent without any carrier woes) – you are the scent killer, right? I wonder how the perfume would fare on you…

      xoxoxo >-)

  • carter says:

    You are all wrong about that bottle. That bottle is Marisa Tomei in a pink-and-black floral catsuit and boots in My Cousin Vinnie stomping her foot and yelling “And my biological clock is TICKING LIKE THIS…”

    And that’s all I have to say on the matter. Thank you for your lovely review, Anita, I enjoyed it very much @};-

    • Musette says:

      This thing is getting cheaper-looking by the minute! But you know, it’s got me wondering….is it possible that the bottle is the ‘fume’s worst enemy? I mean, it’s a gorgeous scent and, to my nose anyway (and the Lady D’s) it’s got legs. But that bottle just …well, if you are not in an ironic state of mind it can be a little…dated? I mean, imagine that flower thingy 10 years from now (Lola? is that it? hey, is that MarcJacobs’s scent? Can’t remember but here’s a segue – I just heard a great interview with him re his film A Single Man with Colin Firth and Julianne Moore. Seems the man is more than the sum of his glistening parts! (sorry for the snark – I actually like quite a few of his perfumes and a whole lotta his clothes. Just not all the glycerine all over the place)

      But back to lelong (surprise!) – I wonder if the bottle is holding the scent back? Your thoughts?

      xooxo >-)

      • carter says:

        Um…do you mean Tom Ford? I think he’s a dick, and I don’t like his ‘fumes all that much, but was a really great clothing designer. I know nothing about the movie, I’m afraid…

        But yeah, I find that whole Dolce & Gabbana high-priced hooker, big-hair and uber-luxe animal print thang just a bit…well…over. Which, when it comes to a perfume this sniff-worthy, is a pity. If I were only going by the bottle and didn’t have you to help me past it, I would never have given it a second look.

        • Musette says:

          As a fan of science fiction and a hater of all things propped and styled on the SciFi channel(SyFy?) I have to agree with you.

          xo >-)

          • Musette says:


            this SciFi response… goes down by Ninara Poll with the cool avatar.

            YOUR response is “d’oh! I am SUCH a l-)” I was looking at a bottle of MJ Lemon cologne (shhh…Christmas Present) it was late and I was beat like a mule.

            That,, and I am an idiot.

            Of course I meant Tom Ford. I don’t know if Marc Jacobs covers himself (and his models) in glycerine….and i don’t wanna know.

            Your latke-lovin’ >-)

  • Existentialist says:

    You get water buffalo wearing a clock, I get Flava Flav wearing a faux-animal print cape…

  • Musette says:

    well it is a bit of a stretch, I admit, but the shape of the cap and the fact that it is horn (albeit not water buffalo) just reminds me of those cranky beasts. Imagine a despondent water buffalo, if you will……[-o< (hoping she buys it) I said, it's a stretch xo>-)

  • Arlene Chase says:

    I must have missed it but where does the water buffalo come in?

  • Tiara says:

    Great post for a gloomy Monday – I’m smiling! Need to check out the orchid room when we visit the conservatory’s holiday display next week. Hope to find Sharry Baby hanging out there. Chocolate and vanilla? Oh my!

  • March says:

    I’ve smelled Sharry Baby orchids (without knowing that’s what they’re called) and their perfume is extraordinary. I’m not a huge fan of chocolate-scented things other than actual chocolate :d but those really are the way Flora describes — a high quality vanilla-chocolate. I’m looking forward to trying LpF and thanks for the post!

    • Musette says:

      Pookie! How you is? I’m on my way to the UPS depot this very morning!

      Since I am in Chicago and they have tons of florists/nurseries around here, I’mo see if i can scare up a Sharry Baby. I hope my nose cooperates – you know it’s a deviated mess in there but hope springs eternal.

      xo >-)

  • kathleen says:

    Thanks for this, A. Not so much for the earwig, which will be playing in my head until it is replaced by another. Their songs tend to stick with me, until something else kicks them out of my head, hopefully it won’t come out of a Jersey Boys advert. Now, I must go a-hunting.

    • Musette says:


      I would be really interested to see what you think of LpF. I’m not sure it’s your type of fragrance, knowing your faves, but hey! ya nebber know!

      xo >-)

  • Shelley says:

    The Real Housewives’ of Jersey Perfume Bottles? 😕

    That kinda covers the earworm (Jersey Boys, they sing it in the advert here all the time), the look, maybe someone can connect the clock? (:|

    As for the scent…I’m agonna run up and reapply my sample. I had too much fun reading through your various entertainments (aka Lelong tangents) to not actually get to the heart of the matter, which would be the stuff–though as we know, sometimes at least half of the fun in scent IS the tangents. :d 😡

    • Musette says:

      Sweetie, you saw that thing, didn’t you? It is SO Jersey (and all ^:)^ to you Jerseyites – blame yo’ boy Tony. This is def a Carmela bottle, though the scent? not so much)

      please come back and write something sensible about it – you know that is beyond my ken.


  • Christine L. says:

    Some PerfumePosse posts send my fingers twitching to google the Stuff of The Moment so that it can be mine….this is one of them. Great post! I’m off to find me some LeLong!!!
    Thank you!

  • Fiordiligi says:

    What a funny review! Thank you – although I didn’t understand half of it (Frankie Valli was in my mind). What I did deduce was that this is one well worth the sampling, though I too am bemused by the clock.

    Vacances is indeed great so I suspect I might like this one too…

    • Musette says:

      My reviews are not meant to be understood ;)) I am the Alien Guest Poster and it’s always a crapshoot whether anybody will ‘get’ the gist of the perfume. That includes me, btw=)) Read at your own peril 8-x

      But it is a gorgeous perfume. Well worth seeking out.

      xoxo >-)

  • Momlady says:

    Wow,that was good for me too**fanning self**…not sure I could wear it but I really enjoyed the review. lol-ed myself silly. Thanks

    • Musette says:

      if you like ‘pretty’ scents this one might fit into your scent wardrobe – I dither on about what it is like because I don’t have a ‘nose’ – half the notes are indistinguishable for me (half?:-w – heh. that’s on a GOOD day). anyway, it’s gorgeous and lush but not overly so – you could wear this -lightly – to the office. At least I could. Then again, I look like Godzilla and my office is in a machine shop.

      xo >-)

  • Flora says:

    My dear Musette, your review is fabulous and funny, and you hit it just right! I am so happy to be your “enabler” for Lelong pour Femme!

    The bottle really grew on me – There is something satisfying about that horned cap and how it slides on and off that’s so gloriously Tiki bar retro that I smile every time. Its just befits a bombshell scent like this so perfectly. I love that the fig is syrup-drenched stewed Kadota and not the raw green kind, and of course lilac and magnolia are essential to my very existence. No, I have no idea HOW they keep the lilac from either disappearing or going musty, as it does in most perfumes, but whatever it is I approve. Perhaps Vacances whispered its own secret….I contacted Lelong to ask them which perfumer created this, but they are not telling – anybody know?

    Sharry Bay orchid hit the scene some years ago and created a sensation in the floral world. Why? It smells like both chocolate and vanilla! Of course vanilla comes from the seed pods of an orchid, so that’s no surprise, but most fragrant orchid flowers smell like something else. Sharry Baby is so deliciously fragrant that a blooming pant will scent a whole room. (I have one!) Simplified, it smells like a very good chocolate bar, perhaps Lindt milk chocolate, creamy and rich and heady with vanilla – which is an essential ingredient in virtually all chocolate to make it taste like something other than mud. Sharry gives off her best aroma in the daytime, especially mornings, and shuts off the scent factory at night. Many orchids smell ONLY at night, so another check in the Win column for Sharry.:d

    • Musette says:

      Holy peanuts! Is that you, D? I nebber knew…

      hey, I am SO glad you chimed in here because you give my absurd review some heft! I really should get with the program and learn the notes, etc if I’m going to guest post on here but at least I’m good for the comic relief!

      I’m totally with you on the horned cap. Every time I snick the top off I’m Suzanne Pleshette in ’40 lbs of Trouble’!!

      I’m going to hunt up a Sharry Baby. I’m not overfond of chocolate in fragrance – or so I thought. Apparently I need to just shut the >-) heck up because LpF contains the dreaded MUSK! 😮 …..and I am beyond fine with it!

      So there!

      Smooches and mucho thanks to you for the V and the intro to LpF!


    • mals86 says:

      “Tiki bar retro” – snort! And appears to be about right. I’ve been wanting to sniff Lpf since you reviewed it on PST; went to the LeLong website to check it out and got tickled over that goofy bottle.