Rich, lush and plush: Scents for celebrating

Wishing everyone a happy holiday season and a very merry Christmas Eve to those who celebrate it. On these festive days, I always think carefully about what scent to wear. And I’ve noticed that over the years, I’ve grouped a number of scents that I love together in a category I’ll loosely call “million-dollar babies.” These fragrances smell like no expense was spared, and are rich, lush and plush, with a capital P:

Givenchy’s Ysatis, a big, bold ’80s floriental, accompanied by a sly wink of coconut; Clive Christian C for Women’s seamlessly blended mix of tuberose, rose, violet and a slew of other lovelies; Hermes’ 24 Faubourg, with rich, lush and plushits Ms. Got Rocks’ nectar of orange blossom and jasmine; my newly rediscovered ’90s fave Faberge Imperial; the Queen Carnal Flower; any number of Amouages; and perhaps even the new floral beauty from Puredistance, Opardu, although I need to spend more quality time with it to see if it will qualify. Hey, I’ll even include Chanel Coromandel. It’s got patchouli, but it’s gorgeously put together and refined — not something that’s often said about patch. Of course, I’m sure I’m missing many others.

These are scents that make you (or at least me) want to don high heels, slip on a strand of pearls (or a tux, for the guys) and go out to some kind of oh-so-elegant affair, be it a grand party, dinner at a posh restaurant or an evening at the opera, theater or ballet. (Or maybe just playing dress-up at home, which I’ve been known to do, ha!)

Just spraying on one of these beauties makes me feel dressed to the nines, even if I’m wearing jeans. I stand a little taller, hold my head a little higher and reach for ravishing red lipstick.

Speaking of Carnal Flower, I wore it to our family’s Thanksgiving celebration this year rich, lush andplushand got several compliments on it, which is a rare occurrence, indeed. That day was two spritzes’ worth: one on my chest, then one on the wrist, which I then gently touched to the back of my neck and to the other wrist.
I usually apply my fragrance VERY lightly, one spritz or dab only, so is it any wonder I don’t get much feedback? (But that’s probably a good thing these days.) At any given time, you’d have to press your nose into my wrist to sniff what I’m wearing. Maybe this will teach me to be a bit more decadent, eh?

Anyway, what fragrances make you feel like a million bucks? What scents say rich, lush and plush
to you?

BTW, I’m still trying to decide what to wear tonight: Despite neither being on my rich, lush and plush list, I’m leaning toward Annick Goutal Encens Flamboyant (for that lovely hit of balsam-y goodness) or a spray of drop-dead beautiful Ubar, sent to me by a generous perfume pal. Or a dollop of Amouage Memoir body cream, sent by another wonderful perfumista. I’ll definitely choose something from the list for Christmas Day though.

53 Comments
Jan Last December 28, 2012

I wore Annick Goutal's Nuit Etoilee. In Guaynabo, Puerto Rico! Even the Grandkids loved the smell, so we misted it onto the christmas napkins! Amazing.

Heather Wood December 25, 2012

Does anyone know anything about a Creed scent called Venisia? Sounds in the big plush category, and evidently frequently knocked off. Is the real thing worth seeking out?

Mariekel December 24, 2012

Divine by Divine always makes me feel exceedingly glam. But nothing tops vintage Chamade parfum for plushhness extraordinaire. To quote from my version of a Christmas Carol on these pages: "Guerlain spritz us, every one." Happy Christmas, beloved Posse!

Alityke December 24, 2012

I adore the golden silky richness of Ubar but it may be overkill with all the rich foody smells of Christmas day. Christmas Eve I'll wear the very appropriate Armani Prive Bois D'Encens. Perfect catholic church service incense. Christmas Day? Chanel 31 Rue Cambon, definitely luxurious, definitely rich.

tammy December 24, 2012

Oh, and could someone please pass along all my best wishes to Nava and Lee?

tammy December 24, 2012

I tend to wear rich, lush and plush all the time...Jub 25, Party in Manhattan, Joy, Poivre....but at Christmas time, it's always Nuit de Noel. (And not just at Christmas!) I have a few precious drops of Voux de Noel that I wear on the day itself. I must have sat too close Portia, as I am now down with a cold, so I won't waste it this year when my nose is not at its best, and am thinking perhaps some Regina Harris Frankincense Myrrh and Rose Maroc might be just the thing,

AnnieA December 24, 2012

Bois de Paradis is very Rich Lady to me. Peace to all...

Alison December 24, 2012

Nothing screams lush, plush, and expensive to me like Hermes Caleche Soie de Parfum. My bottle is now sadly almost gone so I need to budget for a new one - . Can't be without!

Musette December 24, 2012

oooh! I forgot one of my Lush, Plush, favorites: MDCI Enlevement au Serail! Luxe beauty in a bottle! xoxoxoA

Heather Wood December 24, 2012

Opium, little dabs of the pure parfum, can produce a very lush effect. Like some other Big Perfumes of its era, it was so overused by some of its fans that the rest of us forgot how lovely it really was.

Holly F. December 24, 2012

Teo Cabanel Alahine is a holiday favorite. To me, it smells golden and rich.

Robert Matthews December 24, 2012

Vintage Parfum d'Hermes extrait is the richest, densest, plushest, most expensive-smelling thing I know of. It's a mid-eighties floral oriental chypre with lots of incense, just everything but the kitchen sink in that eighties style, and it is utterly fantastic.

Jan December 24, 2012

Ubar is a very good idea! I also like to wear opulent scents these days, I am thinking of wearing 1697 myself this evening.

solanace December 24, 2012

I'd say Amouage Gold Woman and Dia Man, the old Black Armani and vintage Magie Noire, l'Heure Bleue and our dear Shalimar. It is summer here, so I'm thinking jasmine for tonight, A la nuit, Sarrasins or maybe AG Songes.

Suzanne December 24, 2012

Hi Ann! Many of the perfumes you named make me feel like a million bucks. Others for me include Amouage Opus I, Amouage Jubilation 25 (actually, just about any Amouage), L'Arte di Gucci, Frederic Malle Portrait of a Lady, Chanel Coco and Chanel 22, and MDCI Chypre Palatin. Btw, you'll smell amazing in any of those three that you're thinking of wearing on Christmas eve. Great choices. Merry Christmas, dear friend!

Joan December 24, 2012

PArfum d'Empire's Ambre Russe is probably my lushest perfume. Even lusher than Amouage Gold.

eldarwen22 December 24, 2012

Usually, on holidays like Christmas or Thanksgiving, I'll wear Shalimar or Amouage Lyric for women when I am with friends and family. Work is another matter though, it's either Mitsouko because she gives off the don't want to be messed with vibe, or some random perfume that I am indifferent to.

Heather Wood December 24, 2012

Nothing makes me feel quite as luxe as a dab of Carnal Flower, but Sarrasins is great for times when I want to feel rich and wild. Carnal Flower is a luscious reminder to dress well, be on my best behavior, and use my indoor voice. In Sarrasins, I feel deliciously inappropriate. That said, I'll probably wear 7 Billion Hearts on Christmas Day. Deep, dark, smoky, resonating vanilla seems just right. Hope everyone has a great holiday.

rosarita December 24, 2012

Hi, dear Ann and the rest of the Posse! I have a small, cherished bottle of vintage Shalimar extrait that's my favorite lush, plush perfume. Also my vintage Coco. Enjoy your holiday, everyone.

MADCUTE (@getmadcute) December 24, 2012

Parfum d'Empire's Ambre Russe!

Sherri Miller December 24, 2012

Mmmm....rich, lush and plush! Cuir Beluga is my favorite. I was planning on wearing Messe de Minuit tomorrow, however, just for the name. Hope everyone has a great Christmas!!

Jeff Berbert December 24, 2012

Organza Indecence and Neil Morris' Afire will be my scents the next two days.