Best Perfumes for Winter 2013

Best Perfumes for Winter

Well, it’s Winter.  Still.  Icy sidewalks and bone-chilling temps.  Unless you live Down Under, where it’s 107F in the shade.  But I don’t live there, so I sit HERE, shivering.  But even I, Musette, Winter Hater Extraordinaire, admits there is some sublime beauty in crystalline ice-covered branches and snowy lawns…and I can carry my muff and pull off a red lippie without looking like a clown.  So…okay.  It’s Winter.  I’ll deal with it.

But what to wear, scentwise?   My own  preferences are so bizarre…remember the Shattered Ice post from a few years ago, when I wore all those aldehydes in sub-freezing temps?  Yah.  Wel, I’m over that .  It’s too cold.  Those things would cut me like a shiv these days.

I know it’s a bit of a cheat – but it is debuting in late February, which is still in the full-on dead of Winter.  So:  Amouage Beloved Man.  I would wear this every day, it’s so beautiful.  But I prefer it on El O.  So  I make him wear it every day.  It is just ..All That.  I can’t wait for this perfume to release, so you can all know what I am yapping ON about!

Amouage Epic Body Wash and Body Cream.  I waited all season for this, like one waits for Christmas because – whoo-hoooo!  I now have the shower gel and body cream.  That, plus a glass of red wine, makes for a perfect Winter night!

Mona diOrio Les Nombres d’Or Musc.  You know, I really need to stop profilin’.  Profilin’. Is. Wrong.  I had written this off because I am the Musk Hater.   I am now officially the Musc Moron.  This is a lovely, warm, sparkling beauty, perfect for the chilly winter days.  I suspect it’s all the pretties in the upfront that make me love it so.  By the time my mind registers ‘musc’ I’m already comitted to the pretties!

Best Perfumes for Winter

that’s her on the left

Enchanted Forest by The  Vagabond Prince.  This reminds me of my favorite fairytale film, Three Wishes for Cinderella.  No shy flower, Cinderella bests the prince in a gallop through the trees then, disguised as a boy, beats him in an archery competition, all set in the snowy Czechoslovakian forest.  Redolent of crunchy berries and pine, it doesn’t warm against the cold, it embraces it. Gorgeously!

Portia, no fool, is off to Korea, to escape the oven that is currently Australia.  Before dashing off, we got Portia’s best perfumes for winter list:

 As I’ve been living in 35-45C Aussie summer heat lately I’m going to tell you what am I taking to Europe and Korea for my holiday. I hope that’s cool.

Cheap: There are a couple of my cheapies going with me Royal Bain de Caron for its lavish, sweet champagne whoosh, Bvlgari BLV Pour Homme because it’s so warm and spicy & I think I’ll need it and DKNY Gold EdT because I like my white flowers big and fiesty.
Middle: Serge Lutens Santal Majuscule because it’s freaking awesome, Annick Goutal Songes more white flower bliss to remind me of spring and Parfum d’Empire Ambre Russe, as if you need telling why.
Pricey:Amouage Interlude Man, that ridiculously hypnotic magic of Amouage taken to the next level that gives me Stendhal Syndrome sometimes when I wear it.

The only 2 new ones this year are Santal Majuscule and Interlude Man but this is what will be hitting high holiday rotation

Portia also makes mention of Enchanted Forest.  I suspect we’re going to be hearing a lot about this scent, as we move through Winter!

TOM  (who is lovin’ the cold in BH.  I, who live in IL, think he’s NUTZ!\)

One of the good things about having chilly temps in the Hills of Beverly is that I can bring out the heavy hitters and the comport scents. My Scent Twin sent me a decant for Christmas of a few things, including JAR Fermez Tes Yeux (I had a decant I got from Surrender to Chance, but it’s lovely to have a squidge more.) It’s so deliciously rotten, so musky, so ALIVE that I still question whether I’d wear it out of the house. So far the answer is “he!! no!” But one of these days I will have a full bottle even if I have to give up cable. Runners up? MKK, l’Air de Rien and CB I Hate Perfume Musk Reinvention. Too bad temps today went back up to 80..

The lovely Ann sez:

Portrait of a Lady body butter:

The fragrance itself is lovely, but can be a little overpowering (at least for me), so I find the body butter absolute perfection — a softer veil of the scent’s wonderfully dark, spicy rose AND super-plush and moisturizing to boot!

Parfumerie Generale’s Indochine:
This has turned out to be one of my favorite comfort “blankies” again this winter. It reminds me a bit of Kenzo’s Amour (might be the thanaka wood ingredient that both share) but to my nose the Indochine is richer, less floral and more woody.

Neela Vermeire’s creation is incense done just right, softly spiced, yet with a little twist to let you know that this hails from India, baby.

Patty, who is going without a font, is all about the Frederic Malle Carnal Flower Hair Mist.  Who knows?  It’s just working for me.  Serge Lutens de Profundis is in regular rotation because I really never get tired of it, no matter the season.  Le Labo Vanille 44 has claimed the vanilla spot for the winter because I don’t want a vanilla that’s too heavy, and this one just lilts but oozes out comfort.  This is also when I hit the Prada Candy habit.  CB I Hate Perfume Winter 1972 is also on my best perfumes for winter this year because  we are out of snow right now, and it keeps my snow-covered mitten smell going for as long as I want it.  Last one?  Amouage Interlude Woman.  I just don’t get tired of this.  If I get even slightly fatigued, I throw on Amouage Lyric or Amouage Beloved as a nice little break, then I resume my regular Interlude.

For more fabulous scent insights on Best Perfumes for Winter , please visit Now Smell This , Bois de Jasmin, Perfume Smellin Things & Grain de Musc

  • Emily S says:

    You’ve made me want to watch “Three Wishes for Cinderella.” You set the scene so perfectly! This winter I’m loving L’Artisan Tea for Two. I spray it on my pashmina and feel as if I’m spending the day inside a warm cafe watching the blizzard outside. Happy winter!

  • Heather F says:

    What awesome lists–I can’t wait to try Vagabond Prince. And now that winter has finally come to Nashville, I’m also finding that its only redeeming quality is being able to wear my favorite cuddly perfumes (so many Guerlain decants….). Also, thanks Musette (said in earnest and with a smidge of sarcasm): I hadn’t known that Amouage Epic lotion existed, but now I have a jar of the body cream headed my way from MiN (hey, at least I got a discount and free shipping) 🙂 Anne, that PoaL body cream sounds amazing–it’s probably good it’s so expensive and I can’t get a sample, otherwise it might be a major lemming.

  • oohlily says:

    Yeah, winter. I won’t embarrass my children online by saying what my rapidly aging self really thinks of it now. Thank goodness for lip balm and online shopping is the best I can muster up today – it’s 19 degrees out, and that’s without the wind chill factor.

    In addition to the pleasure of reading you, the happy making stuff certainly includes Theorema, vintage Shalimar, vintage Intimate, and Kelly Caleche edp. Thanks to your helpful insights, I’m also going to remember to put on some Gold edp(which I love in spring and summer!) and save the little vintage Rive Gauche extrait I have left for the days I’m strictly staying in!

    • Musette says:

      You have some beauties there. I love Gold as well, esp in colder weather! Am wanting to try the cream – you know me and those creams….

      • oohlily says:

        I’ve got extra tubes of the cream, and I owe you for the great recommendation of Whipped Dream Cream! If you don’t mind waiting a week til I can get out, I’ll happily send it your way!

  • Angela says:

    I’d love to have one of each of your winter favorites sitting on my dresser right now. I think I’d make it through the winter quite happily….

  • I see Santal Majuscule has made it into three of our seasonal Top Tens, that’s quite something… And Patty, I am soooo jealous of your Carnal Flower hair mist. I saw it on the Malle website and asked for it here in Paris, but apparently for regulatory reasons they can’t import. I guess I’ll just have to wait until I go to New York to launch the US edition of my book in March to pick it up.
    And a big mwaaah! to all the Posse.

    • Musette says:

      Denyse – that book launch sounds so exciting! The CF hair mist is…mystifying (couldn’t help it). I wonder why he can’t have it made there as well? huh.

      Mwaaah! and congratulations!!! back to you, darling!


  • lucasai says:

    Great list!
    I want to sample Beloved Man right now. Still haven’t tried Beloved Woman…

    • Musette says:

      Wait until March, then go to Surrender to Chance – Beloved Man should be available for sample no later than early March, we’re hoping (by ‘we’ I mean everybody on Planet Perfumista. I am not affiliated with StC) xoxoA

  • Ann says:

    These are some great picks so far! And Patty, I have to thank you dearly for mentioning the Le Labo Vanille 44 AND the Interlude Woman — they are among my best of winter, too, but was afraid to list them. I figured folks were tired of me yakking on and on about them, ha!
    P.S. That Enchanted Forest (and the film) sound fabulous!

    • Musette says:

      If I can blatherate about Liz Zorn’s Violets and Rainwater FOR FOUR YEARS RUNNING…you can go on abut LLVanille44 and IWoman! Tell ’em Musette Said So. xoxo

  • Heather W says:

    Love Sonoma Scent Studio Winter Woods and Ambre Noir. Love Mona di Orio Vanille. Love a drop or two of Opium pure Parfum in the evening (Patty, thanks for some lovely evenings!) Love MKK and Ambre Sultan. To my surprise, love an occasional hit of SSS Jour Ensoleille, for a blast of citrus orchard followed by a warm golden late summer afternoon. With bees. It reminds me that the bees will come back.

  • rosarita says:

    I look forward to wearing my heavy hitters like greeting old friends: Ambre Russe, Patchouli Antique, Black Cashmere etc. New to me this year are Trayee and big hits of Angel, in the privacy of home.

  • dinazad says:

    SQUEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!!!!! Three wishes for Cinderella!!!!!!!! Isn’t it a lovely film? Isn’t Libuse Safrankova just the perfect fairytale princess???? Isn’t it beautiful?????

    On a more serious note: my favorite winter perfumes have not changed since last year or the year before: Guerlain Winter Delice, SSS Winter Woods, and Lutens Mandarin Mandarine for the very cold days…. But now I have to try Enchanted Forest. Because, SQUEEEEEE!

    • Musette says:

      I came across that film back in 1975, while in college – it was on a children’s Saturday ‘film festival’ show – and it was just so cool (and that was in the black/white television days, so it was even cooler). She’s beautiful, the setting (in the snow) is just wonderful! Many years later I went back to St. Louis pub library to try to find it – way before Google, y’know? – so I had to approximate the dates and hunt through hours of microfiche of TVguides. But I found it! My very first copy was VHS! I have given this film to every little niece and goddaughter of mine, to counteract the Disney version!


  • Caroline says:

    I’m trying something very special at the moment… Well, actually I put it on 16 hours ago and it’s still there although it’s 100% natural. It’s called Kyara by Nicolas De Barry and it’s mainly aloeswood, somewhere in between an animal and woody scent, with a touch of osmathus that’s faded away now (and santal). It’s very confy!!!

  • tammy says:

    I like heavy perfume anyway, and come winter-time, I really let ’em fly. I think amber is probably the common note in many of my “comfort” scents, though I don’t like too many straight-up amber fragrances; I like them mixed in with spicy things. I am currently reaching for Asja, FiFi Chachnil extrait and Frankincense Myrrh & Rose Maroc often, with plenty of Carons and Back to Black in the mix, as well.

    I often crave violets in winter; they can be very stark for such a sweet note, and sometimes I just want that crispness, even when it’s cold outside.

  • eldarwen22 says:

    Since it’s so bitterly cold in Cleveland, I have been wearing Shalimar, Lyric, Memior, Havana Vanille, Mitsouko and Epic. What made my day a few days ago, a coworker asked me what I was wearing and I was wearing Epic. Perfume compliments are very rare for me.

    • Musette says:

      Epic is stunning in the bitter cold. The cream is even more so! Glad you got the compliments. I get some compliments here but oftentimes folks are just mystified.

  • monkeytoe says:

    Miami winters are rarely more than a few weeks below 80F, but on those days that I don’t break out vintage Emeraude, L’Heure Bleu, or maybe smidge of vintage Alpona, I want something like SSS Winter Woods, Ilang Ivohibe, or some Cinema extrait

    • Musette says:

      oooh! this reptile is LOVIN’ the idea of an 80degree winter. I love Miami. And since I love Big Scents in the heat I would be wearing them all year round!