Best Perfumes for Summer

Hi, everybody!  It’s Musette, here, hosting our Annual  Best Perfumes for Summer post.  Although it certainly isn’t summer here anymore.  We went from stunning 90+F heat to wearing hoodies in the chilly rain.  Great for my garden (I keep moving things around and, yes, BUYING MORE PLANTS (so what!  Gardening keeps me from biting people)…but it’s been fun trying to figure out what will work in this chameleon climate.

First up, for warmish rain:  Delrae Mythique.  This is one of those rooty irises that teeters right on the edge of the flower.  Impossible to wear in stultifying heat – it will bring your lunch right the heck up – it’s perfect on a cool, wet day that’s …not really cool?  You know what I mean?  It’ll be back up to mid-80s in a day or so and you can feel that – the ground has already warmed up and it’s not going to cool down anytime soon.   Lovely as it is, Mythique is a Goldilocks scent – and this weather is Just Right for it.

The hotter weather found me wearing Penhaligon’s Juniper Sling because I was in a gin mood (when am I not?).  I like Penhaligon’s scents – this is not faint praise, I promise – but there’s something very ‘safe’ about them; they’re pretty, occasionally interesting but never startling.  I gotta tell you: these days that means a lot to this po’ thang.  Juniper Sling, Malabah, Iris Prima…they all will find a place in my Summer rotation.  Juniper Sling has that martini vibe that I so love in Cartier Brillante, without the hefty price tag (always painful in a light Summer scent)..and with a tad more gin-zing!

Portia’s Best for Summer 2014

Hermessence Epice Marine by Hermès: Excellent heat wearing, a strong, salty blast of cool spices to col you down any time day or night. It’s like plunging into an unheated pool at the end of spring, before thew water really heats up. Delicious.
Lavande de Haute Provence by L’Occitane: This EdC is the perfect summer bath accompaniment. A teaspoon in the bath will sooth, relax and calm you, even in a hot bath I promise you that it will cool your frayed temper. No better way to affordably scent your bath and the lavender is a lovely muted and cool wash for spritzing after the bath, work or exercise.
Black Rosette by Strange Invisible Perfumes: The ultra modern metallic rose, zinging with tea, pepper and mint. This will create an aura of cool, calm and collected no matter how hot and hectic the world around you may seem. Be the eye of the storm and breathe.
Jardins d’Armide by Oriza L. Legrand: This beautiful, powdery, crisp and waxy fragrance is 100% magic for me in the warmth. Cool iris, violet and carnation battle it out with wet & waxy wisteria and the sweet animalics of honey. The sum of it’s parts is so much more than the list of notes. Jardins d’Armide is polarising though so do buy a sample and test it.

Ann’s Best for Summer 2014

Clinique Calyx (formerly of Prescriptives): This old favorite (from 1986) is a lively, juicy, jump-for-the-sheer-joy-of-living fragrance if there ever was one. Its vibrant personality simply won’t stand for the blues. And if you put it on when you’re already happy, it might just make you positively buoyant, even in thick-as-soup heat and humidity. I never want to be without some of this in my perfume wardrobe.

Serge Lutens’ Bas de Soie: This blend of iris, hyacinth, galbanum and musk exudes chic, classy sophistication to my nose and I always feel well-heeled when wearing it, even if I’m in jeans and a gauze top. A bit off-putting for me at first try, I came to see its icy-cool, not-quite aloof aura as an acquired taste. Kind of like that girl in high school or college you thought was conceited, but turns out she’s just reserved, and perhaps a little shy. And once you got to know her, you found her quiet elegance rather refreshing. Speaking of refreshing, I’ve found this scent to be a nice antidote to muggy summer weather.

Tom’s Choices:  As we roll into e summer I’m finding that I am going back to my roots and wearing a lot of classics, line Annick Goutal Eau de Hadrien and Eau de Sud. Christian Dior’s Eau Sauvage is another winner, even if it’s been reformulated. One that I’m using sparingly is my decant (from Surrender to Chance) of Miller Harris Fleurs de Sel, sadly unavailable in the USA.

For more great Summer picks please check out Now Smell This, Grain de Musc, Bois de Jasmin & The Non Blonde

21 Comments

  1. My winters day here was 16° and sunny, so it’s probably not too different from some folks summer.. I’m enjoying my winter frags but it’s nice to have such advance recommendations to prepare for warmer weather.
    Ann- I went in store tonight to sniff the Calyx. You’re right it’s fabulous. And it was 20% off for today only- and I have NO willpower- so I am now the proud new owner of a new summer favourite! (last fortnight it was the Terracotta!)

    • Yay, Lynley!! So happy to hear that you are now a Calyx fan! And how nice that you got a discount on it — that makes it extra nice. Enjoy!!

  2. I’m bring out for summer: YSL’s Y (vintage edt), Floris Edwardian Bouquet, Hermes Le Jardin sur le Nil and Calyx (mine is Prescriptives). Of course, patchouli scents are always in heavy rotation–can’t help it, I’m a patch hag! It is fairly cool this morning, so a spritz of Etro Shaal Nur and I’m on my way. Musette, I love to garden, too. I thought I was being so clever–found a few cannabis seeds from days long gone by, and planted them. Seedlings came up and promptly expired. Probably for the best…

    • Hi, lady! I’m delighted that you mention the Y and the Shaal Nur — I need to find my little decants and wear them again. And glad to see another Calyx lover as well. I do envy you and Musette and those of you who can garden — I have a killer thumb. But DH now, he’s another story; he used to grow the most gorgeous roses at our previous house.

  3. But Portia! Isn’t it wintertime where you are?

    • Well, yes, it is winter in Sydney but to be honest today I was out on the pool sunbathing in 22C and it was gorgeous.
      I did just get home from South Korea a few days ago and it was plenty summer there. Really gorgeous heat there in late spring/early summer. Gets way less comfortable soon though.
      Portia xx

  4. In summer I go for white florals in a big way. I grew up in Louisiana where gardenias and jasmine and who-knows-what-all bloom in summer, so to me this seems like the natural season for BWFs. Right now I’m deeply in love with Dawn Spencer Hurwitz’s Pink Gardenia, a real beauty and rather subtle on my skin.

    • Howdy, dear! I like the sound of that DSH Pink Gardenia; is it a limited edition or still in production?

      • Howdy, dear! I like the sound of that DSH Pink Gardenia; is it a limited edition or still in production?

      • Fortunately Pink Gardenia is still in production, and if Ms. Hurwitz ever axes it from the line, I swear I’ll call down the curse of the Perfume Goddess!

  5. I really love no. 19 in hot weather. No 19 maybe on the perfumey smelling side but it isn’t overwhelming. I even started to like no 19 in the EDT form and I have always found it a little too butch for my liking.

    • Yes! I think No. 19 is great in the heat; something about it just cuts right through and dispels that muggy feeling. Now I just need to remember to wear it, ha!

      • Ann,
        I find that too. I LOVE No 19 but it rarely gets a wear. I will have to put it out for warm winter days.
        Portia xx

  6. I love wearing the original Scherrer in summer. It really opens up in hot weather and its floral heart becomes so prominent.
    Especially the jasmine and rose. It’s like Joy for summer.

    • Hi, dear Katrin! How are you? So glad you mentioned the Scherrer — I remember loving it back in the day. And wasn’t there a Scherrer 2 or am I crazy? 🙂

      • Hi Ann! I’m not actually all that familiar with other scents by Scherrer. I’m using my last drops of the vintage EdP,
        I have another bottle waiting to be opened, in cellophane wrap, but I’m dreading to open it, it’s clearly a newer batch, and who knows…As for vintages in summer, there’s another discovery I must share with you. I’ve never been so fond of No 5 in EdC, it’s sort of too powdery and seems off, until I tried it today in warm weather, and
        something very green and dry kicked in (I still prefer the old extrait), I am excited to discover that this stuff
        is actually wearable!!!

  7. oooo! i agree with whomever said Black Rosette! a nice minty shower and then a few more spritz of that than i can afford and *~ahhhhhhhh~*

    • Howdy, Einsof! I think the BR was Portia’s lovely pick. It does sound nice; from everyone’s raves, I need to get on the stick and try it.

      • Einsof,
        The Black Rosette is AWESOME!! Super power fresh metallic blast of magic. MMMMMM
        Portia xx

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