Austerity and Peculiarity: Christian Dior Dune

So, this post is in three parts and I’ve labeled them clearly so you can skip ahead.  Part Three is perfume.

1) The no-buy week – I really enjoyed reading everyone’s comments on Patty’s post yesterday.  I invited participation in a one-week no-buy last week, having imposed it on myself as an experimental exercise that would force me to contemplate, hour by hour, my relationship with consumption.  Not to sound all highbrow about it.  But I was curious about motivation: what do I buy, and why?  Could I limit my spending to necessities for a week?  What’s a necessity?

Tuesday, Weds., and Thurs. were pretty successful, I bought stuff like gas.  Spent no cash.  There was some extended soul-searching in Trader Joe’s, which is where I buy most of my groceries, on Thursday.  I am feeding a family of six; I did buy the standard nonessentials like the kids’ favorite cookies, and ice cream.  My reasoning: this was my no-buy experiment, not theirs.  Also, they (particularly the teens) are already stigmatized among their friends by my household ban on high-fructose corn syrup and hydrogenated oils, which eliminates 95% of the “standard” snack foods found on American grocery shelves and in the vast majority of their friends’ houses.  So, they got their TJs treats and I kept the peace.  Sue me.

Friday was a cock-up; there was stress and drama, which I won’t detail because it wasn’t even my drama so it’s not my place to explain.  Anyhow, that’s all excuses – I think where to place the blame is pretty obvious. It’s shared equally by Gina the makeup artist who comments on here, who told me about a great lipgloss, and Anita, who’s constantly emailing me your friend thought you might like this item on eBay.  Anita’s like … the Bad Retail Fairy.  Staying away from eBay is incredibly difficult for me, I routinely have ten things in my “watch” list.  The damage on Friday wasn’t terrible – I drove over to the Wall o’Bling retail center and bought that lipgloss and an eye pencil and a striped sweater that reminded me of the Breton shirts in Paris.  In terms of “mindfulness,” I fully admit that it was a mood booster.  Next time I’ll try to skip directly to what I did afterward, which was take the dog (and myself) for a long, quiet walk in the woods.

Saturday we went to Target to get household goo (cleaning supplies, toothpaste) and, predictably, I left with a cartload of non-necessities (like cute knee-socks for Enigma, and one of those gallon containers of goldfish crackers.)  It wasn’t a $40K gambling spree, or even a $4K Hermes bag (can you buy one Hermes bag for $4k?)  But we could have been leaner.  Enigma’s outgrown most of her clothes again and really likes their tee shirts and shorts, and I’m guilty of the buy-two-they’re-cheap! mentality.  I also bought home hair dye for $10, which is hardly a necessity, but as it allowed me to cancel my hair color appointment it was economically sound.

And that was … it.  Sunday and Monday I think I bought, literally, nothing (oops, sorry, more groceries Monday.)  Tuesday: nothing.   As in: nothing.  This past week did help me clarify want vs. need, and it reminded me of how much I can do without.  Useful self-knowledge.  As you read this, Louise and I may be discussing my amazingly deep and profound enlightenment further.  Over coffee.  At Starbucks.

2) That lipgloss — I’m probably blogging on a new play area of mine, my last frontier, nude makeup/lipstick looks, on Random Sunday.  Stop by this Sunday if you have any interest in that discussion.  Nudes are really difficult for me (and maybe all super-pale people) and it’s been fun researching.  I’d love your input.

3) I mentioned Christian Dior Dune recently. Although I could go to Macy’s and smell it, I bought a used EDT of indeterminate vintage on eBay.  I do think it’s a bit older because it’s one of the stoppered bottles (like old Poison) that I haven’t seen in years.  The bottle itself is beautiful, much prettier than in photos- it’s a pale ambery brown that appears to have a faintly opalescent shimmer.

Researching for this post, it’s surprising how much isn’t written about Dune.  I didn’t find any particular blog raves or slams; for a fragrance that’s been around since 1991 and is still pretty easy to find, it’s not high up on the radar in perfumista-land that I can see.  Certainly it doesn’t have the love/hate status of other Dior offerings like Poison, Addict or J’Adore, nor does it have the (possibly waning) cachet of the (reformulated?) Dior classics like Diorella or Dioressence.  Notes for Dune vary, this one seems as plausible as any: bergamot, mandarin, palisander, aldehydes, peony, broom, jasmine, rose, ylang-ylang, lily, wallflower, lichen, vanilla, patchouli, benzoin, sandalwood, musk.  It is generally described as a woody oriental.  I can’t resist the following blurbage from Osmoz, which I presume is at least partly based on Dior PR materials:

Dune is in harmony with the early 90’s: the need for serenity and a return to human values. A perfume that speaks of intimacy and closeness. Dune emancipates women, strengthening their intuitive side … Stop everything for a while. Gaze at the ocean, wrap your arms around your knees, unwind, enjoy being with yourself … Dune for women is not a threat to men: it is a quest for universal harmony governed by feelings. The unusual fragrance carries a brisk briny scent, coupled with sea wind and the sandy warmth of beaches.

I include this … okay, partly because I find it hilarious, but in part because that blurbage feels so 90s, and also because all that talk of brisk and briny and sea wind and (elsewhere) fresh scares the bejusus out of me, because I’m expecting some monster wallop of fresh musk or aquatic notes.  But no.  Dune starts off with a strongly resinous/herbaceous/cocoa combination.  It’s similar to munching on one of those lavender chocolate bars from Dolfin.  (I also recommend the Earl Grey bars, which are really weird.)  While I’m eating the lavender bar I can never decide: is this disgusting or fabulous?  The top notes of Dune are bitter and discordant and yet so compelling I found myself putting it on over and over and over again, trying to parse it.  It’s sharp and dry at first, not so much aldehydic as sour bordering on bitter (hello broom, wallflower and lichen?), and the “sandy warmth of beaches” feels to my nose more like a cold pebble beach with some prickly sea urchins sticking up.   Briny?  Well … salty.  Yes.  The illusion of salt, the parched, arid feel of it, odd in so dense a scent.  The further the nose moves away from the skin, the less difficult it becomes — the jasmine, ylang, vanilla and benzoin soar up and away with a soft, warm, inviting sillage that couldn’t be more different from the bitterness which is rendered up close on the skin.  Twice this week I had a daughter compliment me in passing on my fragrance, and yet wrinkle her nose when she smelled it up close.

I actually dug up the thesaurus, trying to find a better word than “disenchanted” — Luca Turin’s apt description of Dune in The Guide.  And I can’t do it.  LT says that Dune is “a strong contender for Bleakest Beauty in all of perfumery.”  (He gives it five stars, fresh oriental.)  The drydown, as LT notes, contains the inedible chocolate of new-edition Cartier Must (and to my nose, the choco-patch of Angel) and by all rights I should loathe it, and yet I don’t, I think because of the counterweight of the woodsy florals (and that sandalwood! My goodness!)   And while we try to avoid gender stereotyping here on the Posse, in my opinion this could easily be a masculine fragrance.  I wonder what Dune Pour Homme, done by Olivier Cresp in 1997, smells like?  From the descriptions on Basenotes, it sounds like a green figgy-woody thing. (TS gives DPH four stars in The Guide but her description is a perfunctory two-liner.)

Dior Dune is hands down the strangest theoretically-mainstream scent I have ever smelled; I can’t believe it’s still in production, or why anyone would have made it in the first place.  Every perfumista’s closet needs some odd things in it, and even if I don’t end up wearing it often, I’m rather pleased to have my bottle.

  • LuluB says:

    I just adore this stuff. The compelling, striking sense of fascination I’m endlessly searching for in a fragrance, I always end-up finding in “Dune”. It’s proven to be my favorite, nomatter how many other fragrance “roads” I travel down in search of scent-prompted “truth”. With its strange quality of dusky humidity surrounding dry, hazy spice, I find myself settling into it on both cold nights and sweltering afternoons. It’s mysterious and arid enough for thinking under starry skies, yet, “spiced-cocoa” coziness for cuddling next to a fire. It most reminds me of a favorite film, Peter Weir’s “Picnic at Hanging Rock”, in that it conjures up similar imagery and feeling; peaceful beauty tinged with a strange kind of unease…the kind self-aware, mortal beings remember when they get particularily philosophical or reconnect with the primitiveness of their environment. Structured social behavior–ladylike, Victorian prettiness–masking something strange, ancient and primal. The aloof calm of privilege, against raw, humanistic anxieties. The contradictions found in Australian wilderness; sandy, baked earth and hot, dry grass, meeting steamy, lush greenery. Dry, astringent woods against creamy, yet spicy florals. Clearly, I’m a “Dune” fan ;D, but I’d suggest anyone scratching their heads over this bizzare beauty, combine it with a viewing of “Picnic…” and see where it takes you. It still won’t make sense (neither film nor fragrance), but you’ll be left with this overwhelming feeling that it all should ;).

    • Ann N. says:

      Lulu, thanks for the reminder of “Picnic” — hadn’t thought about that in years. What a beautiful yet disturbing film. I saw it after loving Peter Weir’s “Witness,” so I searched out his other films. Will definitely have to watch it again.

    • mary says:

      OK, I’m definitley going to try Dune– thanks for the lovely comment!:)

      • March says:

        It’s well worth trying. I’ve quite fallen for it.

        • mary says:

          I also checked out the OPI Tickle My France-y–and darned if it isn’t just extremely posh on. Bought the last bottle in Oakland, apparantly. Thanks for the recommendation! I noticed on the news that both the MSNBC anchor and the administration official being grilled on the oil spill crisis were both rocking that nude lip look. Must be the credible grown-up look of the day.:)>-

          • March says:

            So glad you liked France-y! It’s not very attractive in the bottle, in my opinion … which is why I bought it — 🙂 I like those ugly colors. But it’s quite nice on!

  • Sharon VA says:

    Hello all! The timing of all this Dune talk is weird as I was just sent an unasked for sample of it. At first I didn’t like it and then I thought it was meh and now I kind of like it. Also, I keep putting it on accidentally. It’s sitting at the top of my sample vials and even when I mean to grab something else, I end up grabbing Dune. This tells me that one or more of the following is true:
    a) I have too many samples
    b) I should pay attention to what I’m doing
    c) I should buy a bottle of Dune

    • March says:

      I’m back re-responding, as I think our original stuff is not recoverable … I hope you took this sign for what it was and bought that Dune. :)>-

  • AnnieA says:

    Lavender chocolate is a little soapy for my taste. I knew someone who believed chocolate mixed with anything else (e.g. mint) was an abomination, and while I wouldn’t go that far I can understand.

    Speaking of restraint, I *didn’t* buy BB’s Nude, because it reminded me of something I already had at home. My feeling is that if I don’t buy things I semi-want it’ll make up for the expensive things I *do* want, and buy. Ah, mindful shopping…

    • March says:

      Trying to hold off on the multiple “meh” purchases and saving for one or two nice things makes sense. Also if you’d told me I’d like a fragrance I described as lavender chocolate I’d have laughed.

  • Tara C says:

    I’ve been reading frugality blogs for the past year, so I’m very focused on my spending. Can you believe I haven’t bought a bottle of perfume in months? I can’t. Of course I’m about to fall off the wagon next week when I get my bonus. 😡

    As for Dune, the first 6 hours are difficult, but I love the drydown. I also love the bottle – when I see it I think of that movie “The Sheltering Sky.”

    • March says:

      I don’t think we’re going to get the previous lost comments back from this post 🙁 so I’ll just say that I hope you fell off the wagon and bought some fragrance! And I’m still giggling at “the first six hours are difficult, but I love the drydown…”

  • Nava says:

    I had some difficulty getting here earlier as well.

    March, I believe your austerity edict gave many people (myself included) the opportunity to do some real soul searching. I think we’ve all gotten used to this new idea of “normal” that includes $5.00 Starbucks coffees and other “can’t live without” items that didn’t exist back in the day. And, I think those items – cell phones, Blackberrys, etc., contribute to the conundrum we face of what is a necessity and what isn’t. And, ebay doesn’t help, since where would we possibly find a vintage bottle of whatever unless we scoured garage sales? It’s all become so easy…

    Anyway, as for lipgloss, there is never enough. :d I can’t wait to read your Random Sunday post!

    • March says:

      It’s hardly an original idea on my part, but I’ll say it anyway: the advent of the Internet, in all the ways it is wonderful, has really added to the consumerist environment. I mean, when you reach a point that you can: research, price compare, and then PURCHASE, say, a lipstick, or some lavender chocolate 🙂 , or shoes in two possible sizes (Zappos!), it is really, really easy to spend a lot of money, fast. Even on eBay — I remember the bad old days when I had to mail a check. PayPal has made all that infinitely easier, but it takes — what — literally 30 seconds to BIN a nail polish, click on PayPal, and pay? It reduces spending money to an effort level akin to changing the channels on the TV. Maybe even less so.

      So. Yes. The nice thing for ME, having to consider every single thing to buy, was the pleasant sensation that I didn’t need most of it — which I’m actually trying to carry over into the cash-in-wallet portion. And I had the weirdly attractive/unpleasant sensation of watching a purse on eBay expire not once but TWICE during that week without my bidding on it. I think I’ll live…

      Yeah, drop back by on Sunday!

  • maggiecat says:

    I may have to tune in for the lipgloss/lipstick nude look discussion. I love the idea of barely there color, but as my natural skin tone aspires to milk (once I get a base “tan”), it doesn’t always work for me either. Maybe we’ll find a solution!

    • March says:

      I am no makeup expert whatsoever, but on our past makeup posts (red lips etc.) we’ve shared tips, experiences and laughs, and I always learn something new and wind up with a list of colors to try! 😡

  • Musette says:

    I tried to reply earlier but was cut off!

    Okay: here’s the deal.

    I am Evil Handbag Fairy.

    Also, Evil Burbon/Bacon/Caramel Corn Fairy

    Also: Evil Chocolate Sables Fairy.

    I suspect I should just call it a day and Just Be Eeeevil! 8-x

    Dune? Dunno.

    Diorella. Do know. Could its cachet ever wane? Possibly. Just not by me!

    Oh, wait. You didn’t call me ‘evil’. you called me ‘bad’. Well I’m upping the ante. Go Big or Go Home!

    Hermes: yes. you can buy a bag for $4K Way less than that, in fact. Just not my beloved Bombay. Or a Kelly. Or a Birkin. (we’re talking new/retail here – otherwise YMMV)

    Love you mucho. Dashing off to meet a customer, with my Eeeevil >-) Self! 8-x

    • March says:

      Fine. You’re the Big Bad Bacon Handbag Fairy. [-(


      I know, the dang site’s been up and down all day. We need more %%-

      I think I want a Kelly. Birkin, not so much.

      • Musette says:

        You want a Bombay. You do.

        xo >-)

        and…could I just be the Bad Bacon Handbag Fairy? Big, not so much?

        After all, I gave up Mallomars! That’s gotta be good for at least a half of a dress size??? [-o< xoxoxo >-)

  • mals86 says:

    1) I didn’t play. I’m still making up for all those years when I bought nothing but necessities. What DID I buy last week, other than the usual groceries and gas? Bought new baseball pants for the boys, to replace the ones they outgrew. Bought lunch at work twice last week. Bought :”> four bottles of perfume because I’d been planning a little splurge for our anniversary, which is early in May, and because there was a 20% off sale: a backup of the CB Ines dlF, a small bottle of Tocadilly, and a small bottle of Hanae Mori Haute Couture, as well as a small bottle of Soivohle’s new Lilacs & Heliotrope. And a small bottle of Dune for my SIL’s birthday, but that hardly counts, right?

    2) As I’ve gotten older (I’m 42) my lips have lost color as well, so I don’t skip lipstick as I did when I was twenty-something. Nude lips? Uh, no – it always makes me think of how lipless people looked on the original Star Trek. Ick.

    3) “Dune for women is not a threat to men…” Sputter. I probably mentioned at one time or another that Dune was my sister’s scent and I was forbidden to wear it. Especially since now it reminds her of her first husband. I haven’t smelled it in ages, but I remember liking it on her – not that that’s any indication of anything, because Coco Mlle. smells gorgeous on her.

    And when I asked my SIL at Christmas what she was wearing these days, she said, wistfully, “Well, nothing. There’s a girl at my [3-days-week] Bible study that’s allergic to perfume, so I got out of the habit. I used to wear Dune, but the last time I smelled my bottle, it had gone bad, so I threw it out.” So she’s getting a small bottle of Dune for her birthday – I doubt wearing it on Friday date nights would get her in trouble during the week.

    • March says:

      Aw! How sweet to get her some Dune! And gosh, I’d have a really hard time working in a no-frag environment, although they’re getting more common. I like the list of things you bought, quite a range of items there.

      That CB Ines I wore just a couple days ago! It’s perfect in this whacky spring weather.

      Well, you can see why I had to quote the Dune blurb.

  • Sariah says:

    Again, yay for Dune! Dune was the first perfume I bought with my own money, wore it through college, and am on my 3rd bottle. I never did find it weird, but I guess in comparison to everything out there it does have a lot of character. It conjures up warm sand and dry shrubs to me, thank goodness not aquatic. Love your review and impressions!

    On austerity – now that I’m living out of a backpack, should have no problem with that one!

  • dleep says:

    I will be very interested in reading your post about the nude lipstick looks. I am very pale and I just can’t get the right color. I keep trying. Right now I am trying a sample of an Ellis Faas nude (can’t remember the number right now). I thought it looked okay in my bathroom mirror but I have not worn it out in public. I have never tried Dune but your post has me curious.

    • March says:

      If it makes you feel any better, I’ve been asking SAs to make me up for … two years? In a nude lip. Mostly with disastrous results. I took a different approach finally. For sure I think our “nudes” are really lighter, paler YLBB shades. Not so much the ultra-skin color…

  • maidenbliss says:

    I commend you for your food restrictions–I raised mine the same way and the appreciate it now, but not at the time. :(( My daughter still reminds me of Snackwells-oh, they didn’t that!
    I remember smelling Dune long ago–it reminds me of disco dancing (I didn’t):d and big hair, Obsession and Opium. My sister was obsessed with Opium and to this day it nauseates me. It permeated the atmosphere she passed through. The sandy beach/wind reference throws me. Maybe I should give it another try so I can ‘strengthen my intuition’ whatever that means. Maybe perfume has more magic than I realized:))

    • maidenbliss says:

      Maybe I need a teacher to correct my mistakes. I’m sure it’s my ADD, being in a hurry here to get to something else that needs my attention=))

    • March says:

      As a commenter above pointed out, in addition to pure silliness, it’s hard to imagine a worse fit between the ad copy and the scent being advertised… to me, it’s closer to Obsession (in sheer weird barfiness) and Must than anything else. And nobody judges on mistakes and typos on here, I usually don’t even see them!

      The HFCA/oils ban was my personal rage-response to all that sugar and fat being where it shouldn’t be. And it does, conveniently, end almost all arguments for non-nutritive snack foods, of which we do not need more. [-( And in case you’re wondering, yes, my 7-year-old twins can read the ingredient labels, as they know that’s the first question! But have no fear, they get plenty of sweets … I think that’s why the 13yo is such a good baker.

  • Robin says:

    You’re right. Nobody talks about Dune, and it’s a great scent. Can’t find my sample, of course, but eventually I will.

  • Linda says:

    Wow, that ad copy is hilariously awful for the product. I’ve smelled Dune and it doesn’t remotely remind me of beachy, fresh, any of that. What it DOES remind me of, in that line, might be luxe tan lotion: it has that kind of rich almost-gourmandness. Love the mention of the delicious/disgusting chocolates — I’m addicted to those weird combos!

    • March says:

      Um … yes. I totally agree. If I wanted to pick something that went with that ad copy, it would be NOTHING like Dune. CK One maybe, or I don’t know, a beachy frag (although that’s an obvious choice). But not Dune. And mostly I hate that kind of chocolate in fragrance, but somehow it works here…

  • donanicola says:

    I remember all that blurb when it was released and it kind sucked me in (been wearing Obsession or Cristalle edt). So much so that when I went to the States (for the first time evah), Florida it was, I bought a bottle (the stoppered one) in duty free, and I loved it for as long as I had that bottle and no longer. Moved onto Ralph Lauren Safari after that. It is weird, soft and remote all at once. And my feelings toward it are also ambivalent – affection for the memories it conjures (it was a great holiday!) yet no desire to wear it. Great review, thanks.

    • March says:

      What a great memory, though, associated with a trip to Florida and the US! And I am smiling, that was my first time around with Poison (one bottle and no more…) and thanks for commenting!

    • Ann N. says:

      Oooh, Safari, now there’s a great one that’s too often forgotten. And it’s pretty darn unique — can’t think of another scent that smells anything like it!

      • DinaC says:

        I always clump Safari in the same family with No. 19, Silences, Bel Respiro and Heure Exquise because they’ve all got that galbanum note that I’m fond of. I found a bottle of Safari at TJMaxx just a year or so ago for around $25. What a steal!

  • Astra says:

    The austerity experiment is pretty easy for me because I actually don’t like to shop all that much and I hate clutter. Not that I don’t have a lot of things, I do, but avoiding getting more for a week isn’t too hard. I liked your experiment, though, because it encouraged me to “shop my home.” I’m reading the collected novels of Dashiell Hammett, which I bought at a used book sale years ago and never read (great stuff) and I’m taking a look at my CD collection and trying out some of the ones I rarely (or never!) listen to.

    To be fair, it hasn’t felt much like an austerity week since I had a bunch of my plant and bulb orders show up. Summer can not come fast enough!

    • Shelley says:

      Woo-hoo, plants & bulbs! Am awaiting a plant order myself. But at this very moment, I have a beautiful, welcome, wonderful pile of dirt in my driveway. Gardner’s mix, with humus…ahhhhhh. Red wheelbarrow awaits. 🙂

      • March says:

        Man…. I’d like that pile of dirt even more than the plants and bulbs. 3:-o

        • Astra says:

          Last year, I got 12 tons of gravel to mulch my rock garden, all of which had to be placed in a wheelbarrow, rolled up the hill and dumped at the end. So, I am pretty happy with just the plants and bulbs this year!

    • March says:

      Shopping your home, there’s a great idea! Definitely books-wise, I can always find something interesting around here to read that I haven’t read yet. And yay on the plant and bulb orders!

  • DinaC says:

    I remember Dune from the 90s and how I had that repelled/attracted feeling toward it. Thanks for exploring it fully. You’ve described why it is that I never bought a bottle. Like your daughters, I would like it from afar, but up close, not so much.

    The austerity experiment wasn’t too bad for me. I bought food for a b-day party and T-shirts for my son who is growing like a weed. That’s it really. But I browsed through several catalogs — J. Crew, Anthro, Lands’ End…not that I *need* anything.

    I’m one of those super pale people, so nude makeup makes me look washed out. I like contrast. But I happen to be rockin’ some nice mannequin toes right now with Essie’s Fondola Gondola. It’s a pinky-beige.

    • March says:

      It’s funny, I can browse a paper catalog and nothing bad happens. Browsing online … well, that leads to trouble. $-)

      Mannequin hands (and toes) I thought sounded awful until I found a great shade for myself! And they are cool-looking. And chic. And they go with everything.

      Dune is a whole bucket of weird.

  • Marsi says:

    Oh, thank you, 7-pound, 2-ounce, sweet baby Jesus, you are going to talk about that lipgloss! I got to the end of Part 1, with no further mention of The Gloss and was like, “Whuck?!”

    Then moved onto Part 2. Yay for Sunday! The best I can do for a “nude” gloss (or lipcolor) is the ol’ Your Lips But Better color. I can’t do a Jennifer Lopez type of nude. (My coloring is as yours is, March: Snow White … high contrast.)

    Anyhow, your foray into Triple Secret Probation sounds like it was mostly a success. The mindfulness of it is the key. As for efforts on my part, I am thisclose to being able to afford the long-coveted “Belle Vivier” buckle pumps by Roger Vivier that I’ve had my eye on for, oh, ever.

    Dune repelled me when it first came out. It probably will still do that, but I must get myself another sniff of it to be sure.

    • CynthiaW says:

      I’ll definitely be interested in the nude lips experiment – the closest I’ve come is also the “your lips but better” which still has quite a bit of pink in it. Every time that I’ve tried nude lips, they’ve made me look like a corpse.

    • March says:

      Muwahaha. It’s no State Secret, I just figured I’d work it onto Sunday’s post, since I’ll be looking for other suggestions as well. And there is definitely some overlap between YLBB and “nude.”

      Ooooh! Hold out for the Roger Viviers! Well worth it!

      Dune is a little repellent, which is part of its attraction.

  • Shelley says:

    So I didn’t get a chance to yank Patty’s chain a little bit yesterday, what with /:)/:)technical issues/:)/:) interrupting my access to the site…

    …but it was kinda funny how she went for the assessment wrap-up a day early, no? Patty, were you ready to be DONE???? ;))

    I really wanna try Dune. I am curious. It’s been on the “if you can pick it up for X or less” radar, but to date, have not won an auction. I might have built a bit of a reference library when it comes to perfume, but I do try to keep it cheap. When I’m not extravagant. $-)

    As for nude lips…I was just telling a friend that I’ve actually started to wear lipstick sometimes, because at some point in the last few years, my lips changed color. In fact, there are moments when I’d swear they *disappeared*….

    • March says:

      Stupid blog was just down again! Grrrrr! x( And I’m pretty sure we wrapped it up a day early because she was getting her eyelashes done again… no, seriously!

      The Dune pops up pretty regularly on the bay, like old Chloe. I’m sure you’ll wind up with some.

      Nude lips. I’ve had a number of SAs say, you have REALLY pigmented lips (for an old lady, is what they’re implying.) Apparently loss of lipcolor is pretty common. Since mine are bluish, I tend to keep them covered in something. 🙂

      • Shelley says:

        “For an old lady” is, of course, what I wasn’t saying…:-\” (whistler guy? will he show today?)

        • Shelley says:

          Nope, no whistler. :”> Wait, why blush? Hang on, am I being :-b?

          The weird thing is, there are days when the color is still there. Guess it’s a transitional proces…

          As for Patty… eyelashes? ZOMG. ;))

        • March says:

          No, whistler is permanently AWOL. You get questioning guy.

          And I am pretty sure about the lashes.

  • Melissa says:

    Dune was never a favorite, although it compelled me to try it many times when it was first released. That was years ago, so it probably merits a re-sniff.

    The austerity exercise yielded some interesting, though not entirely unexpected results. It wasn’t difficult for me to give up S-bux, meals out, movies etc. I realized that I rarely have time for those things anyway. Makeup purchases can be delayed until I really need to replace a mascara, eyeliner etc. I usually plan my clothes shopping trips and I was too busy to visit places that might trigger an “urge”. I am prone to periodic impulse buys, particularly when shopping with (unnamed person who may be reading this in the next hour or two :&#120;).

    Perfume is, as I predicted, my downfall. If I see a well-priced, htf bottle of vintage something on ebay, it’s hard to resist. My one “slip” was exactly that. Everything else was fairly easy. For a week anyway. 😮

    • Melissa says:

      Yikes, emoticons gone wild! It was supposed to be the one with the heart. Not the winking and leering one. And all of those symbols and numbers next to it? Not a secret code or anything. That I know of. :-w

    • March says:

      Our emoticons lead their own strong, independent lives … half the time when I do winking guy, I get grinning guy instead.

      Uh, I am not sure I can hold a htf eBay purchase against you! /:) Those are extraordinary circumstances…

  • Louise says:

    Shall we make that an double-Venti, 5-shot, 3 pump choco, full fat with whip at Sbux $-) You know, just to roll back austerity? :@)

    I vowed to examine my spending this week. And I did examine. Me spending. I bought some “expected” makeup from MAC, a fb of a rarish perfume to split, some cheap (really cheap) jewelry at the teen shop, and nail polish. An average week, with a slight edge of reflection, mild restraint, and consultation from my guru about the necessity of new hiking boots… which in fact were the most sensible purchase I made, given my lifestyle.

    I am hoping to find my Dune parfum soon…I can’t say I like it, but it does attract me in some odd way.

    And I love nudes. I’ve found a nudish lipstick that I *think* works, and several “manequin hands” polishes that I like. Oh, but more on the weekend on that :p

    • March says:

      You know, if you wrote your drink down on a card, I could keep it in my purse and whip it out at the counter, if I get there before you. Because I’ll never remember. ~o)

      Hee, I know where your jewelry came from! And I do hope you got your boots … and of course that expected MAC makeup…

      Oh! Thanks for reminding me about the hands! Mannequin hands definitely belong in the post!

  • Fiordiligi says:

    It’s the watery/salty/beachy thing that I’ve always disliked in Dune – a note in there that I find really off-putting.

    I think you did pretty well with the austerity thing, which a) I couldn’t do in a billion years and b) must be well-nigh impossible with offspring to consider.

    Look forward to your nude makeup piece. I am not at all a lover of that look (and especially not nude lips – ugh) but I am a complete makeup junky and have been since I was about 12, back in the Dark Ages.

    • March says:

      Mmmmmmm…. that salty thing … or, rather, in general — Dune strikes me as rather polarizing. In that folks would despise it rather than disliking it. And it *is* offputting. In its entirety. It’s sullen and standoffish, which is part of why the whole “serenity … ocean” marketing thing cracks me up.

      The nude makeup/lip look I took on as a personal challenge, having had it done professionally a number of times with hideous results. 🙂 I wanted to see if I could approximate/achieve it in any way. I’m just an enthusiastic amateur, and it’s fun to talk about.

  • Winifreida says:

    Another one that passed me by as I lay sleeping with Mitsouko, tho’ I remember surreptitiously sniffing it in a friend’s bathroom and liking it. And the heavily-bagged Must de Cartier is a cheap chocolate relative? Actually I sometimes wonder about my fidelity, because I definitely had a bottle of that and loved it, remember running out of it in New Zealand on a ski trip back in about ’85….
    My interest was sorely piqued again by (a) Turin’s review, and now (b) March.
    And its discontinued? After being totally degraded by Smellcorp or whoever it was bought up these great firms?
    I’ve already been putting everything that looks vaguely ‘vintage’ on my ‘bay watch list, although its extremely hard to tell from the visual cues with this one…except for the box.
    Its a real stand-alone in Michael Edward’s book, its one of only two ‘fresh woody oriental – water’ frags that have ever been created…yup lemming…its like the empty bottles of Mitsouko and yaaah, the bud bottle of L’Heure Bleue that I used to put in my underwear drawer and then ooooh throw away when they stopped wafting…you know, I could have just bought the thing in a SHOP!
    Still, you can just get on with it and sniff – the next new thing??

    • March says:

      Hey, you can sleep with Mitsy and still cheat with other frags. Just don’t try to layer them. Mitsy will open up her can of whup-ass and hurt you. 8-x I speak from experience. I never smelled the original (old) Must which I have heard was quite different, but I don’t know how, or if it’s true. Also, DUNE is not discontinued. It’s still around and kicking. And seriously, doesn’t fresh woody oriental sound like an oxymoron?

      • Ann N. says:

        Good morning! March, glad to see that you had success with last week’s challenge. As Joe said above, it’s progress, not perfection we’re after. And any time we can slow down, hop off the mindless spending roller coaster and really think about what we’re doing (and why) is excellent, in my book.
        Now I really must chime in and defend my poor, much-maligned vintage Must de Cartiers (huffs at Luca Turin). Today’s versions are just so-so IMHO; a heavy, Obsession-ish scent for the EDP and a slightly lighter variation of same for the EDT.
        But the originals were a whole different breed, especially the Must de Cartier EDT which was an entirely separate scent from the original EDP. And they layered beautifully together. Also lovely was the Must de Cartier II in both the EDT and EDP. They are the original MUST EDT were in the fruity-floral range, but definitely classy, not like some of the stuff today that gives the category a bad name. I gave a friend several samples of it all and she said, “Ooh, yum! How did I miss these?” If you’d like me to send you a few vials, March, I’d be happy to.

        • Ann N. says:

          Oops, I meant to say “Those and the original Must EDT”. Sorry …

        • March says:

          Oh, I’d love to try it! I’ll email you! And I didn’t mean to malign your vintage Must, I am actually on the same page — I’ve heard anecdotally that it used to be a quite different, lovely scent. And perversely I’d like to know what I missed. :)>-

          • Ann N. says:

            No, no, March, you didn’t at all!! I was referring to that big ‘ol Luca Turin slapdown and some other general ill will toward it that I’ve picked up on. But as they say, to each his own. On me, the vintages are all simply divine and I’ve gotten nothing but compliments. Do drop me a note — I’d be happy to send you a few vials and see if you can feel the love (or even like). Thanks!

          • March says:

            Ann, perhaps I misread … whatever it is I can’t find now to quote anyway, but I thought that LT (or maybe it was TS) was ragging the new Cartier Must precisely because s/he remembered the old and thought that the old was so much better – that the current Must was, like new Chloe, an imposter in the bottle. But I may be remembering it incorrectly.

            I’m looking forward to falling in love with something I can no longer get. 🙂

  • ula says:

    Thumbs up for the austerity week. By all means, it’s a good thing and everyone should give it a go. if nothing else, it makes you realise that one doesn’t need so many things. I know a girl whose blog I follow and she decided, after realising that her wardrobe is so full of clothes, to buy NO clothing items (with the exception of undergarments, of course) for a whole year. So far, it’s been 4 months, I guess, and she has been holding up well. So much for the extremes 😉
    As for Dune, it’s some very weird stuff, I concur. One would think that Dior would not produce something as bizarre as this. I have to revisit it, as my memories of it involve some headachy feelings…I remember when it was popular in the 90’s and where I live, women had a heavy hand using it. Btw, speaking of Dune pour Homme, you can clearly see the similarities, but if Dune for women is a cold pebble beach, Dune for men conjures a sandy beach with dry grass and herbaceous wafts in the air. Both are nice, that’s for sure. Also, I think both can be, in fact, unisex.

    • March says:

      A year of no clothes?



      Okay, I’m ashamed, because (with the same undies exception) I could no doubt do the same. In theory. But not in reality.

      Somewhere out there is a gal who had three (five?) simple black dresses made up, identical, and she’s wearing those every day, possibly accessorized with other clothing, for a year, which I think is a cool idea.

      Dune is one of those fragrances that I can easily see becoming the icepick-through-the-eye in overapplication. It’s almost too much just dabbed on. And I will have to try DPH, especially as I love fig.

      • Catherine says:

        I am clearly not a fashionista–because the sound of having 3/5 perfect dresses made up and that be that for a year sounds *perfect.* Just let me have a scarf or two.

        Ula–that sounds like a fun blog read.

      • CynthiaW says:

        I saw that – it’s someone who works for Lucky or Allure or something – she has one little black dress and posts the outfits that she makes up with her accessories. Of course, it’s a little unfair because I’m fairly certain that she can go into “The Closet” at the mag she works for to get the accessories. Unless I’m thinking of someone else entirely.

        I couldn’t do that know – I’m still losing weight, but I’d like to try something similar once I hit my goal weight and get my new wardrobe in place. One thing that I discovered when I started giving away my fat clothes is that I had way too many clothes and I didn’t really wear most of them.

        • March says:

          Re: your last sentence — guilty as charged (in a different way). I tend to wear the same clothes over and over again … I’m not changing sizes, but I am trying to “shop the closet” more and if I can’t find a way to wear an item, it’s moving on out of here…

          • CynthiaW says:

            I was watching one of those organization shows and they said that people generally wear 20% of their clothes 80% of the time – I’d believe it, too. I actually forget that I have stuff until I clean the closet out. If I could just find a way to be allowed to wear yoga clothes to work, I’d wear 10% of my wardrobe 95% of the time – lol.

          • March says:

            Isn’t that funny? Sometimes I wish I were more that person… I’m such a magpie when it comes to prints, though.

      • ula says:

        I tried not buying any clothes for a longer period of time but managed to keep my vow for two months only 😕 who knew it’s that hard?
        The idea with wearing only one dress is also heroic I believe,pfffft! thumbs up for all the brave ladies out there

  • Jared says:

    Dune Pour Homme? Not so much. It stuck me as the usual soapy-citrus creation designed to appeal to mainstream men, aka, not me. That’s why I own a bottle of Dune for myself. But, again, I often forget about it. People think Dans Tes Bras is weird, but when will I ever wear Dune?? I wear Dans Tes Bras all the freakin’ time but never Dune. It got an associative pairing with LOST, though, so it kind of always makes me think of Juliet. And hey LOST was on last night so when I watch it in the morning maybe I’ll give it a whirl again!

    • March says:

      Another guy wearing Dune … how come y’all didn’t tell us ladies? <):) And the associative pairing with LOST is cracking me up.

  • Eric says:

    Not much beyond I apparently need to try Dune. It sounds amazing.

    • March says:

      Well … I’d be surprised if you sniffed it and thought, oh, haven’t I smelled this a thousand times already?! :-< 😉 It's odd. And it looks like a couple guys on here are already wearing it!

  • Adrianna says:

    I was born in Poland in the 80’s and have hardly any memories of perfume from back than. Those were the times when buying basics like bread and toilet paper was a mission. When women in Western countries where bathing themselves (as I have read) in Poison and Obsession, Polish girls were happy when they got a bar of soap!:d/ The good side of this I guess is that when I read “how 80’s” a perfume is, I have no idea what it’s all about.
    However, in the 90’s my stepmother got a bottle of Dune, which my father bought on the black market for her. She always over-applied it to the point where you could hardly breath. I think the bottle design is beautiful, the fragrance one of a kind, but the memories are just too much. I bought a small bottle years back and have to give it back. I guess at times it is hard to be objective when it comes to perfume.
    But the Dune Pour Homme is very nice, I smelled it on a male friend and loved it!

    • March says:

      Actually … this is a beautiful story. I’m not admiring the deprivation, but imagining what it must have been like, to get a bottle of perfume on the black market when even soap was a treat. And yes, I can see their might be an over-application problem. It does sound like Pour Homme is worth sampling. @};-

  • Joe says:

    Oh. You know what you’ve done, don’t you? You’ve made me need to get a sample of this. Somehow, you’ve made my imagination conjure a blend of Fleurs de Sel and some warm, powdery, oriental-y thing like Eau Lente. Hmmmm… I’m thinking there’s a barely-touched vial somewhere at the bottom of a plastic box around here.

    As for the austerity experiment: Congrats. Like I said last week, it’s about progress, not perfection. And congrats for banning HFCS and hydr. oils from your house. Not an easy task, I’d say… and thank heaven for TJ’s — they’re even in my old NJ neighborhood now.

    • CynthiaW says:

      I haven’t sent you a sample of Dune yet? I’ll send you one in the next package if you don’t already have one.

      • Joe says:

        You — or someone — may very well have, but…

        … you know… my sample piles… b-(

        Let me hunt around for it and get back to you.

    • March says:

      Wait … I thought you were on a no buy? 8-| Hee, eyebatting emoticon, is he batting his eyes? I lurve that one.

      If you don’t file your sample piles they reproduce and then you end up on one of those reality shows about hoarders. Just saying.

      The HFCS is sooooooo annoying, I think it’s an American problem (corn is king) but it’s in freaking EVERYTHING. Like bread, for instance. TJs is great because in general they avoid it, so I have to do less compulsive label reading.

  • CynthiaW says:

    Oooh… I adore Dune. A friend recently gave me a vintage bottle of the Dune epirit de parfum and it’s lovely – a bit softer than the regular edp.

  • Furriner says:

    My sister bought a Dior sampler from the Perfumed Court a few months ago, but when she got it in the mail, she was sick with the flu, and now cannot bear the smell of any of the samples. She ended up giving them to me. I was really impressed with Dune as well, and am thinking of getting a bottle. I am a man, btw. I haven’t smelled Dune pour Homme.

    • March says:

      Aha!!! Confirming my suspicions that this would be a perfect man’s scent. It sounds like The Guys already knew about this one … and I empathize about the flu. I had a stomach bug recently and it really put me off Gucci Rush for a few days. :d Which some people would probably find a blessing…