Perfumes for Travel

The post is well-named since I’m traveling this morning!  This is the beginning of our Costa Rica adventure.  I’ll be uploading pictures to my Facebook profile during our Trip with a cute little iPhone app travel journal thingie.

While writing this, I’m still trying to finish packing, decide on things that reallly have to go with (computer?) or stay behind.  Week-long trips are easier, but once you get past that 7-day mark, then you have to start making some more crucial decisions and leaving things behind that you really don’t want to.

But, listen, I know y’all don’t care about whether I take my computer or not (it is going with since I don’t have a post written for Thursday), but I know you do care about what perfume I’m taking with.

Picking perfume(s) to travel with is tricky.  Pick the wrong thing?  You’re stuck with it or perfumeless for your vacation.  Since we’re going into warm, tropical weather, I need something light, but that smells a little tropical floral, but not too heavy.  Obviously I’m not taking Kilian Pure Oud or one of the Amouage attars, though one of those likely will go with me to Paris when it is cold and you  need to be bundled up in scent and comfort.

What I picked surprised me a little.  Soivohle Violets and Rainwater.  Soft and lilting with a beautiful earthy undertone that makes me pretty happy.  And Ormonde Jayne Tiare.  This could have been Sampaquita or Champaca, but it was Tiare because it just smells like I want my vacation to smell – little tropical, lush floral, but not verging on rotting plush, and clean, almost soapy.

Now, I’m trying to make this decision while smelling the leftover spray tan solution on me, but I think I’ve got it what’s going to work.

What I’m more interested in is what you guys take on vacations, and I assume it varies between warm weather and cold weather ones, or does it? Do you have one standby that you always take?  I do always have a vial of Kilian Pure Oud in my purse.  Don’t ask, I just feel better knowing it is always nearby.  Do you take any perfumes with you at all, or do you take a vacation from fragrance?

I’ll miss you guys!

  • Aimiliona says:

    Rive Gauce, because the metal bottle won’t break in the suitcase.

  • Rowanhill says:

    For the warm weather, like say Bali, AG Songes EdP – more frangipani, for somewhat less humid climes like Greece the EdT – more jasmine, Estee Lauder Azuree Soleil and for the fresh effect Dior’s Escale a Portofino, perhaps a small sample of Acqua di Parma’s Colonia, just in case. And as a shower gel Molton Brown’s Templetree (frangipani)

  • Mary Matos says:

    Is a perfume I have noticed is perfect for cool enviroments. There is the Picture. As you probably already knew, Ralph by Ralph Lauren. Has anyone has the same Experience?

  • hongkongmom says:

    have a WONDERFUL trip
    I took aa tiare mimosa on my summer trip to bermuda for day and samsara for night…the tiara mimosa was PERFECT, but the samsara was a new bottle and a whole lot sweeter/powdery than i remember it when it first came out….i ended up using my sisters, jardin de mediterrnean and a jardin sur la nil body lotion as well
    i think now, i would take jubilation 25/l’heure bleu and attrape for the nights!(all decants of course)

  • Jared says:

    First, I love that you have Pure Oud on you at all times. I want some of that! One of these days I’ll have to spring for the full bottle, but until then I’m nursing the samples.
    I am the worst over-packer ever because I simply MUST have options! I hate that prospect of “getting stuck”. Choosing which fragrance to take is the same. Maybe it would be easier if I could transer them into smaller little vials, but how to choose? I don’t envy you! I generally end up lugging along five bottles at least. And yes, where you’re going absolutely makes a difference! I at least take an option for daytime wear and something to wear out in the evenings. Bon voyage!

  • Linda says:

    I always take something with me, because it can be such a surprising touch of civilization in the wild places where we like to vacation. It’s nice to pop out of the woods, spruce up for dinner, and smell like oneself. I love to take Sables with me, because it’s subtle on me and appropriate in infinite situations, but I’ve taken Monyette Paris with me on a few trips too. They just travel well.

  • zeezee says:

    Ooh, Costa Rica. Niiiice. I interned in San José a few years back, lovely experience. Being relatively tall & northern European looking is a definite business asset, those parts.
    On city trips, I take a few small samples/decants with me. Always CdG Ouarzazate (my dedicated travel scent) and 2 or 3 others depending on season, mood and occasion. Longer trips, and especially cross-Atlantic ones, are usually so low maintenance that fragrance doesn’t even enter the equation. Perhaps a small vial of Eau des Merveilles or Mandragore for rully fancy occasions such as going to an actual restaurant. :)>-

  • mariekel says:

    Two years ago, i had a contract that took me overseas. It was supposed to have been ten days but wound up being 2 straight months. I was sent first to Serbia, where the weather had been absurdly warm and humid. Of course, when I got there, the temperature had dropped about 20 degrees and it was nearly nonstop rain.

    Since I had been anticipating hot weather, I had initially packed only small amounts of light scents like IPdF Agrumi di Sicilia and SMN Melograno. I added Delrae Amoureuse as my sexy nighttime scent.

    I wound up next in Ireland (freezing) and then Turkey (hot, dry), my perfume cache dwindling rapidly. When i arrived in Dublin, I headed immediately for the department stores and perfume counters, realizing my tiny stash was not gonna get me through my time abroad. The sweet girl at Hermes gave me samples of a bunch of Hermessences and I wound up wearing Poivre Samarkande to much acclaim in Turkey, alternating with Osmanthe Yunnan. Dublin got Ambre Narguile (though I must say that AN is not
    Now, if I travel, I bring 5-6 sizeable samples of very different scents. A girl has to be prepared for anything these days!

    • Gretchen says:

      “AN is not”. . . what? The end to that sentence is lost, and the mystery is haunting me.

      • mariekel says:

        oops! What i was intending to say is that AN is not really me. i think it is very well made but I find it too sweet and a bit heavy for my taste.

  • Judith says:

    Hey Patty! I obviously have not been keeping up, since I was surprised to learn you are going to Costa Rica. We are, too–on Thursday, for a week! After a brief stay in San Jose, we are mostly going to be in the rainforest on the Osa peninsula. It would be amazing if I ran into you there!

  • Mary Beth says:

    I’m starting to mentally prepare for my escape for mid-Atlantic cold to FL cold.

    My last trip there, I took Cristalle EDT, Jicky, some H20 & BBW bath stuff, & decants of Nana Bronze & Eau de Merveilles.

    If the weather in FL syays as it is ’twill be Cadjmere, Jicky & FNFP. Need all the comfort I can get at these family reunions!

    For the record – I never travel without Jicky. My security blankie in a bottle.

  • allabouteve says:

    Ohhhh cuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuumooooooooooon,so unffffair! I studied biology and Costa Rica is like…every step you’ll take there, you’ll be stepping on some incredibly endangered orchid,or mouse, or ant..or something! lol!Have a great time and please do send lots of photos (what’s that iphone thingie you’re talking about?)
    Choosing perfume for travel is really hard (I remember the time when I only had ONE perfume and things where much simpler)’s hard to not take your faves with you, even if they’re absolutely inappropiate for where you’re going..and every time I come back home, one of the first things I do after checking on the plants is heading straight to the perfume closet..and just re-enjoying my sweet little honeys..hey,it’s embarrasing, but I do miss them!
    But well, back to topic..practically the only thing I have in mind when choosing perfume for a trip is the weather I’m going to have..but Jicky’s always with me,wherever I go.

  • Disteza says:

    The last trip I took was for a wedding in middle-of-nowhere Ohio, so I decided to buck the appropriate smell for the place/occasion trend. I took my FB of Jicky Parfum (we were driving, so no size restrictions) and wore it with abandon. I’m sure there’s still a cloud of it hovering over the area. <):)

  • Shelley says:

    Okay, I’m going to smudge all my life experience with vacations together, so it sounds like it (vacationing) is something I do on a regular basis. Just for fun here in the cold.

    The basic formula is this: two spray vials. One comfort/classic, depending on what I think I’ll really need to have with, that goes with climate/surroundings/company expected (if any) etc. One experiment, either a geographic pairing or a something that seems like it would be good to find out if it pairs well with the locale. If #2 works, then VOILA! I have a scent to match location, a la your list here. If I’m someplace that has perfume, then I might look for something local (small shop/artisan), or only available there (city exclusive etc) to see if I can find a souvenir. Advantages of #2 and #3 are that I end up with something that always brings up memories of that trip.

    I must say, though, that I don’t fret about it. I can survive without. (I generally have a scented solid stashed in my bag, anyway.) And for a souvenir, I can always revert to my old habit, which is to grab a little dirt or a rock and bring it home. First goal, after all, is get there. 🙂

  • Hilary says:

    I’m on holiday now, in New York. My travelling perfume selections included small bottles of Mitsouko and Shalimar (the former a comfort blanket, the latter for Christmas glamour), a large decant of Bois des Iles which I go nowhere without, and some favourite samples to scheme over: Ormonde Woman, Une Rose Chypree, L’Air du Desert Marocain, 5 o’clock au Gingembre. It’s been good: I’ve fallen comprehensively in love with the OJ and discovered that a light spray of Shalimar over my arms is the best way to wear it without knocking myself out in the first 10 minutes. They’ve been warm enough to cope with the snow and sturdy enough for family dramas.

    • Gretchen says:

      Sturdy enough to cope with family drama! That’s an important and often-overlooked criterion. I need to evaluate my fragrances in that light.

  • Elizabeth says:

    If I were lucky enough to be going to Costa Rica, I would not bring much with me except perhaps one comfort scent. Maybe one or two samples, that’s all. Take the time to smell the Costa Rica: the markets, shops, people, forests, etc. Find out what the Costa Ricans wear. And have a terrific time!

  • tania says:

    I bring a lot of samples and decants, never a full bottle, in case of accidents. (I’ve never had a bottle of any type leak in the hold, but I don’t want to risk any of my favourites – or my clothes!) I’ll try and choose the scents depending on the climate I’m heading for, but I always end up with too many, and some unsuitable ones too. In the words of the great hero Jayne, I kind of get excitable as to choice, and like to keep my options open…:)

    But I always have at least one amber in the mix, one rose (often Lyric), and Mitsy.

  • Olfacta says:

    I just take a bag of samples. Once, in Anchorage, a TSA agent took a small bottle of BBW peppermint foot balm away from me, and even though I knew it was below the volume limit, I also knew better than to argue with her. She probably enjoyed it quite a bit. I had traveled all over the country with that same bottle with NO problems. That experience — she was very agressive and suspicious — dissuaded me from ever taking more than a few mls of anything on a plane.

    If I were going to the tropics I’d take something refreshing for daytime and a tropical (Tiare or Manomoulia or OJ Frangipani) at night. My mom grew up in Panama and used to rhapsodize about the smell of frangipani.

  • Have a great trip – lots of colourful parrots, I bet. My other half would be in heaven, as he loves exotic birds.

    I have just been to Bruges in the snow and did much like Natalie, ie took about 10 samples of things I know I like. What I ended up wearing was L’Air du Desert Marocain, Guerlain Bois d’Armenie, Tom Ford White Suede and Prada L’Eau Ambree, all of which were perfect comfort scents for the winter wonderland outside.

    It has been a while since I took a warm holiday, but your choice of Tiare sounds perfect, not that I have tried it yet, but am on the waiting list for a sample from the OJ shop in London! Or maybe Saffron James Ume or Le’a would be nice. Or CSP Ecume de The for a cooler accent.

  • Connie says:

    A holiday, how fun!!

    I just take whatever I happen to be wearing at the time or a few samples hoping I run out thus rationalizing any purchase(s). :d

    However, I promise I will give it more thought henceforth so as to associate the fragrance with the trip.

    (Taking copious notes).

    Enjoy your holiday, Patty!

    P.S. I may be going to Paris later this month, too!

  • Rappleyea says:

    Bon Voyage and travel safely. Let us know on Thurs. what you decided to take. Some great suggestions here.

  • Louise says:

    I keep it way simple when traveling- often just Eau Premiere-perfect after hikes and adventures, nice for city play :d/

  • Wordbird says:

    Have a great trip, Patty. I can’t wait to hear about Costa Rica. I’ve never been to either of the Americas and am thoroughly envious of you, both for your well-deserved holiday and for living in Colorado, which looks beautiful.

    I travel quite often and I too keep a couple of emergency vials in my handbag (Bois des Iles and L’Eau d’Hiver). I have an old tin pencil case that contains a pile of decants and samples, so I can take quite a selection. Which is cheating, I know. 🙂

    I have an 8ml refill of Mitsouko parfum which seems to want to go traveling with me, so I don’t argue. A white musk Crazy Libellule stick that is brilliantly useful, and a little solid from Fragonard called Mumure (very oriental). But generally it’s little bottles of L’Air du Desert Marocain and Fragonard’s Miranda, which is a coconut/vanilla pie; because both are good in either hot or cold. And for something a little fresh I have a tiny bottle of Ava Luxe’s No 23 which is all scented-leaf geraniums and gentle woods.

    For beach holidays where I don’t want to risk my good stuff getting spoiled, I have Bronze Goddess and Virgin Island Water, which is just made for hot weather.

  • Masha says:

    Great post! I always take a small silk bag of samples with me. It’s nice to try them in new environments, and if one doesn’t work, another will. I also take a Crazy Libellule and the Poppies crazystick for the airplane. They are close to the skin, but security-friendly (at least for now).

  • Silviafunkly says:

    I go for samples (lots) and small decants, would say between 5-15 depending on the length of the holiday. Some new, some old favs, but always a lot of thought goes into the choice process.

    Touch wood, I never had specific cravings while in the middle of nowhere. In fact I find I am a little less obsessive about what perfume I wear while at an exotic destination, especially if the place has scents of its own.

    Have a fab time !!!

  • Annelie says:

    I wish you a wonderful trip. My sister in law is partly grown up in Costa Rica and she describe it like a tropical paradise with beautiful nature and very friendly people.

    I usually pack a lot of small samples and spray decants even if I only plan to be away for the weekend, I want to have a lot to chose from since my mood changes rather quickly.

  • Fiordiligi says:

    Have a wonderful trip! And I’m going to be in Paris, too, later in the month.

    I usually select half-a-dozen decants but I never take anything I don’t already know, in case of disaster. And whatever I take, it must always include some beloved Guerlain as a security blanket. Going to Italy I usually take some SMNs and Etros on their holidays back to the homeland.

    Of course, going to Paris I know I will be able to buy (well, at least I would were it not for that looming and monstrous tax bill)but we always travel to places where shopping is possible! I’m not daft…..

  • Millicent says:

    I love thinking about what perfumes to bring on vacation and recently have gotten a big kick out of wearing perfumes in their named-for places: Kyoto in Kyoto, Borneo 1834 in Borneo…well, I’m only up to two so far, but it’s still fun. We live in a tropical climate (coming soon: Eau de Kuala Lumpur?), which means working with hot & humid every day. Now that I’m used to it, I find that the tropical white florals are only of interest when I’m actually at the beach. Turns out Diptyque’s Do Son is pretty good with a bathing suit and sunscreen, and Sarrasins is nice for having dinner in a loose dress and bare feet.

    Have a great time!

  • Mary says:

    Have a wonderful time! Thanks for taking your computer– I so look forward to your posts. I took my brand new little decant of Bulgari Omnia to LA– and a little sample of Parfum Sacre– but they did not really suit. Found an old , beautiful bottle of Shalimar, which was just right for the cold nights, and a bottle of something Worth, which I think is Dans La Nuit, because of a pronounced Lily of the Valley note ,which made me forget all about the perfumes I had brought in my bag. But then we went to Venice and found the Strange Invisible Perfumes—that was vacation destination, not taking with, but it was a blast.

  • Musette says:

    it’s bone-chilling here so I’m living your life in my head, okay?
    YAY! on the V&R! You know I have much love for that scent. New York in April.

    Since I never go on vacation anymore because all I do is work I will do my fantasy trip fragrances, with the caveat that each trip also comes with a bottle of vintage Mitsouko parfum. so there.

    San Francisco/summer: TDC Charmes & Leaves
    NY/summer: Agraria Bitter Orange
    NY/autumn: Jolie Madame (vint)/L’origan (vint)

    Monte Carlo/July: Cartier Les Heures Brilliante
    Paris/October: Cuir de Russie (Chanel)
    Lido (Hotel des Bains)/ summer: vintage Vacances/ Lelong pour Femme parfum

    Right now, in freezing Chicago: a hot shower and Rosine Rose d’Ete

    xoxoxo >-)

    • Shelley says:

      LOVE the fantasy destinations and their imagined scents…

      Speaking of freezing in Chicago…am listening to the sounds of my furnace being dismantled *as we speak.* Imagine the scenes of the father in A Christmas Story clonking around in the basement, multiplied by two people, multiplied by power tools. The accompanying miasma of epithets is all in my head, but I believe you can still see it over Lake Michigan. Where it joins the cloud I sent up yesterday when I cleaned the dryer vent. 😮

      Clearly, I need a vacation. Gonna fantasize about that…and post my vacation scents below.

  • carter says:

    I take a rose scent, always, when I head south. Ormonde Jayne Ta’if is beautiful on hot, humid nights. Ditto SL Rose de Nuit. Daytime…probably Les Nez Manoumalia. Another option for me would be to take Carnal Flower, only, and wear the just the body cream during the day and layer it with the ‘fume at night.

    But since I’m not actually headed to warmer climes and am stuck here in freezing my a** off in NYC l-), I am counting on you to let me tan vicariously through you. So have as much fun as the Costa Rican law allows and keep us posted. Oh, and JEALOUS =:)

  • Natalie says:

    My method is to pack a grab bag of about 10 samples — ones I already love or at least like, not untested ones — and figure out which ones work best when I get there. Sometimes the weather can change, or your mood changes, or something you normally love just isn’t quite right, so it’s nice to have options. For instance, I went to Venice recently, and while I like Baume du Doge and it would seem to be eminently appropriate, it languished in my little sample baggie while 31 Rue Cambon and Gris Clair got all the love.

    Your trip sounds like it will be fantastic — have a wonderful and safe journey!

    • nancy says:

      I do the same. I take samples to force myself to try them, as I tend not to at home. I feel virtuous putting a dent into my sample collection, which always seems to verge on the out of control. As with you, I like having samples not knowing precisely the weather or mood. The one downside is not having one particular scent to link to the holiday, which later sniffing will revive the holiday memory.

      • Fernando says:

        I do the samples thing as well: put them all in a little box, at least one for each day away from home, usually more. If I have minis around, they might go in too. Then just try them on as I go, hoping that nothing turns out to be too awful. For a longer trip, I might also pack a reliable bottle or two. This time (we’re in Florida visiting relatives), it was Ambre Sultan, since my wife is with me and she loves it.

  • Winifreida says:

    Oh wow, have a great trip! My Other Half takes dive groups there, he reckons its in the top three on Planet Ocean as he calls it! He came back last time with a T-shirt that says “No Army Since 1942” or something…
    Take real coconut oil and Spiriteuse Double Vanille!!!! Fracas!!! You just have to have something outrageously funky and tropical, heck, what about Comptior Vanille Banane – yes I know, my taste is OTT but we are just starting our monsoon season here in subtropical Australia and the lush vanillas and killer tuberoses really do it.
    Bon Voyage!

  • tmp00 says:

    Have a lovely time!

    I know you know how to turn off the international roaming thing on your iPhone, right?

  • gino says:

    i always travel with youth dew parfum or bath oil[i think the fragrance is horrible] ,joy,fracas and the first armani fragrance..a bit of everything!..travelling imbues a sense of occasion so i adore a confident scent.

  • Elizabeth says:

    I love Costa Rica – I went there on my honeymoon and fell in love with Central America. I hope you have a great time. I don’t vacation much, so I don’t know what I would take. When I was in Tahoe this past weekend I went perfume-free, which was not fun. On any future trip, I would not want to be without some No. 5 in some form, Ambre Sultan, and some oud fragrance – Pure Oud might be that “One”. Can’t wait to hear about your trip!

  • Scent HIve says:

    Red Flower Guaiac has become my San Francisco fragrance. This is a first for me, having a destination specific perfume and I really like it.

  • ScentRed says:

    I find it reassuring to have scents with me when I travel. Sometimes I take a scented lotion that does double duty. For summer I like AG Eau de Sud; for winter – Donna Karan Gold – both come with decent body lotions. I recently discovered Cashmere Mist Body Creme which I find to be a great close to the skin comfort scent that won’t knock out other travellers in close proximity.

    I also carry an 8 mL of Bois des Iles in my purse with a note saying “In case of emergency, spritz twice with this and call this number…”

    I wish you a wonderful trip. Soak it in 🙂

  • bryan says:

    I know what you mean by always having a scent near by. I tend to keep Carnal Flower on me or near me at all times. Or tuberose absolute….something tuberosey.
    Vacation wise I try to pick something that I don’t mind repeating. I don’t like wearing the same thing over and over, so I pick one I really really love. L’heure bleue often accompanies me. And Chamade….the more complex scents seem to fit the bill. But CF is a given.
    I hope your trip is Fabulous!

  • Furriner says:

    I am actually on vacation now… in Japan. I didn’t bring any fragrance with me. I figured I would scout out some Japanese scents hard to find in the US (specifically Shiseido Basala edt or Tactics), or, at the very least, get something on the way home in duty free.