Failure to Communicate

Cool Hand Luke

I have a Fb friend who, by all rights & reasonings, should be my Spirit Twin – we love a lot of the same, weirdly nerdy stuff – and we seem to really LIKE each other, if only virtually.

Yet.  And yet.  Nearly 90% of the time, when she posts something and I respond, I am met with confusion – real confusion – about what I am trying to say.  And, alas, on a couple of occasions, it nearly devolved into slightly salty feelings!

How can that be?  Everything points to us being the Perfect Pair.  And yet.

I have that same experience with several Perfume Houses (yeah, this wasn’t about her 😉  I just needed a metaphor to segue into this ) – don’t faint, but Patou is on that list.  I adore Vacances and, back in the Jurassic Era, used to scent my sheets and curtains with the juice from that emerald-topped bottle. And I love Joy (but don’t LUH it) and enjoy dusting myself with the scented powder from time to time.   But that is where it stops!  No matter how hard I try, I cannot wrap my nose around L’Heure Attendue (a BIG FLORAL CHYPRE – okay, somebody is just messin’ wit me now!  Right?  I should LUH this!), Normandie (which I was expecting something ‘salty’ and bluey-silvery in essence.  Um…no) , Colony (do you know how many, many times I have dabbed/sprayed/misted/soaked in that stuff?  That pineapple note was MADE for me.  Uh….eh.


And that’s just the point.  This is ‘eh’.  This isn’t even some Janus-coin hatred!    But Patou (especially) is a Revered House.  I am supposed to, if not love it, then have some Very Strong Emotion about it – it’s almost a requirement!

But I can’t!  It’s much like my Fb friend – there is no hostility there – how can there be?  She is smart, interesting, charming – it’s just that often, when I respond to her, there is a failure to communicate.  And who gets all brimstone-y over a failure to communicate!?  Well, other than The Captain up there.  And he was trying to break Cool Hand Luke, not figure out why he didn’t love Sublime.

I’d tell you about my other ‘eh’ House :cough:Caron:cough:  but I’m afraid y’all will just throw me out of the Perfume Club!  The Urns?  Gorgeous URNS.  Perfumes?  Eh.  Okay.  THIS IS MADNESS!  These aren’t even ‘iffy’ Houses – these are the solid bases of our oeuvre!  I am supposed to ADORE them!  Or at least have some solid opinions about them.  But all I can muster is a basic ‘eh’.  What is wrong with me!!!?  Well, at least I have Coco, Francois & the Guerlain Boys to give me some cred.

Do you have any perfumes that just ‘meh’ you?  What about an entire House?  Who loves/would like to try L’Heure Attendue?  I have a lovely little decant I would be delighted to share with you.  Drop a line.


Oh!  speaking of:  I haz the Aromatherapy Associates WINNERS here:



and Koyel

gmail yer old evilauntieanita with your details and remind me what you’ve won.  I’ll get it out to you pdq!  promise!

  • Kathleen Smith says:

    I have found none of the Ormande Jayne are a good fit for me. I was excited to find one to love but went through the samples and unfortunately none smelled good on me. Which is unusual because most houses have at least one in my style. I’ve been very interested in sampling L’Heure Attendue after your post. This sounds like a fragrance up my alley.

  • verbenaluvvr says:

    Finally I am among people who are brave enough to admit these things, it is a relief to be able to confess! I have so tried, without any success whatsoever, to find anything likeable from SL and Montale/Mancera. I have completely given up. With the exception of When We Cuddle, I just can’t make a Tauer connection, either.

  • Kate E. says:

    All Chanel fragrances smell sharp on me. Even as they dry down they just keep lashing out at me. Once I tested Fracas when out shopping with my mom and she made me ride home with my arm out the window–we still laugh about that one! When things don’t work for me, they REALLY don’t work.

  • Portia says:

    Hey there Musette,
    Most of the CREED line doesn’t light my fire, same with Tom Ford and Stephane Hubert. There are one or two in each house that I own and love but the rest, nope.
    LOVE Caron and Patou. He he he. like seriously LUH them.
    Portia xx

  • Neva says:

    I really have a problem with Andy Tauer perfumes, at least the ones I have tried so far. Most of them have a weird gasoline note and I just can’t get over it.

  • Anna Egeria P. says:

    I used to wear Joy but it wasn’t that special on me. I’ve tried other Patou fragrances but that was a long time ago. At Guerlain, it was just Jardins de Bagatelle and the vintage Samsara that were for me At Caron, just Narcisse Noir or Muguet. The fragrance I’ll love forever is the original Carolina Herrera.

  • Nina Z says:

    Maybe it’s a skin chemistry thing, Anita. My friend Brooke and I talk about this all the time, as we do side by side comparisons with the two of us. Something meh on me can smell beautiful and plush on her. And some things she can’t wear at all smell great on me. But I have so many lines I just cannot wear almost all of: Dior, Serge Lutens, By Killian, Andy Tauer, Creed, Le Labo, etc. But I do very well with Chanel, Guerlain, Caron, and Patou. Dawn Spencer Hurwitz actually has a Special Formula X that she uses to test her customer’s skins to see which kind of things will smell good on them and which will not.

  • maggiecat says:

    I haven’t yet found a Tom Ford that I loved, except for the Jasmine and Musk that came out and was discontinued almost immediately. THAT I loved. I’m still looking for “my” Lutens, and I’m with you on Patou. I don’t like Joy (heresy! but also -tuberose. Tuberose and I famously do not get along…) and hoped I would love Joy Forever, which is tuberose-free, but…meh. And I also don’t get Mitsouko, though I keep feeling as if I should.
    Sigh. We’re all still friends, right?

  • March says:

    LOL with you on the Caron, babe. That base note of mildew = not my favorite.

  • rosarita313 says:

    Thanks so much, me and my toe won the draw and we’re grateful 🙂 let’s see, Chergui should be a win, and TF Tobacco Vanille. Actually I haven’t cared for most of the fancy TF I’ve tried although I really like most of the signature line. The thing that’s going to make me have to turn in my perfume lovers card is Guerlain: I love Nahema, I forever love Shalimar, I like Samsara. Other than that…..not so much. Something just isn’t me.

  • Kathryn says:

    You think you’ve got it bad? I’m cursed by the ultimate perfumista heresy. Mitsouko and I do not get along. It’s frustrating. I can smell a lovely peach lactone in there, one of my favorite notes, but between it and me there’s a wall that smells like wet clay. It’s almost as bad with Apres L’Ondee. No off notes there. It just doesn’t move me.

    Fortunately, the Patous, Carons, and Chanels and I all get along famously (well, maybe not No. 5 and Mademoiselle). As soon as I scrub off this spritz of Mitsy I sprayed on to see if she was finally speaking to me, I’m going to dab on some L’Heure Attendu. We don’t spend much time together, but when we do it’s always fun. I

  • Well- I love Patou and Caron and Chanel- but there are very few Guerlains that work for me and most are vintage and even many of the vintages are not my favs. Samsara and very vintage Vol de Nuit are my best. Even many Serge Lutens that are raved about I don’t love. So I get it.

  • eldarwen22 says:

    I do have an issue with Creed. They are nothing earth shattering and Green Irish Tweed is pretty tolerable. Serge Lutens is one of those iffy houses, I have a few that I like and own but a lot of them are just too much.

  • Kandice says:

    I’m so glad others have mentioned Chanel on here. While I love Coco, everything else is just “meh” as you put it. I’ve tried several, and there is a note in all of them that reminds me of hairspray in the dry down. That screechy note puts me off them every single time. And yet, I feel like I’m betraying my perfumista badge by saying so. Ah well, at least I’m not alone. That’s nice to know 🙂

  • Mals86 says:

    Oh, I feel the same way about Caron. AND Patou (except for Vacances, and I mean that 80s release, not the 2015 reorchestration that broke my heart). AND L’Artisan, which tends to leave me scratching my head and wondering what others see in it.

    Also Lutens. Generally speaking, with that house I just. Don’t. Geddit. Some of those I vaguely enjoy, some I hate (Fourreau Noir seems especially made as Mals-repellant), one I love (La Myrrhe)… and the rest, I’m all MEH. Whatevs.

  • Kismet says:

    Wish I could love Chanel and I’ve tried, especially with No. 19. Unfortunately I find them thin and bitchy. Or maybe that just describes me, without the “thin” part.

  • HeidiC says:

    I’m with you on Patou — I haven’t tried L’Heure Attendue, but Joy does nothing for me (I think because it was the signature scent of a cruel aunt), and Mille is just meh. Some of the other big houses, I’m split between vintage and current: I love vintage Caron (Narcisse Noir and Tabac Blond are totally my jam) and vintage Dior, but I actively dislike their current perfumes. Not a fan of YSL or Creed. And I can’t even with all the oud in the Montale line.

  • Lemoncake says:

    Can’t speak to Patou other than Joy….but it’s been so long ago I’m not sure what I’d think now. Bond No. 9 and Creed don’t do a thing for me.

  • I just can’t get along with any of the female-targeted Chanels – to me they are all just the essence of spiteful chainsmoking snobby ladies, marinated in harsh unwelcoming choking chemicals, and yes I know how unfair that is, and how much of an affront to perfume history it is that I recoil from Chanel.

    Even the revered Amouage does obnoxious things to my nose – I can perceive and even admire the artistry of their blends, but to me there’s just way, way, way too much going on in nearly all of their fragrances, too many ingredients, too much femininity, too much sillage – I feel like I’m being yelled at in smell.

  • Marianne says:

    Pierre Balmain La Mome……the best way to chase me away!

  • carolb says:

    I have tried, but Creed fails me & turns unpleasant after a few minutes. Serge Lutens disappears in a few minutes & Clive Christians last too long. I’ve not found an Amouage or Byredo I like enough to buy.

  • Taxi says:

    I’ve never had a chance to try L’Heure Attendu. I fondly remember Vacances & still have/wear Amour Amour. Once I adored Joy, then something changed, probably my own chemistry, & we broke up. Sublime never played nicely on me.

  • Bill Tse says:

    Serge Lutens. Admittedly they are quite interesting and some might even say daring, original, but I just can’t get past the high level of honeyed sweetness in basically every one of their perfumes.

  • dinazad says:

    Carons (with a very few exceptions. Vintage Fleur de Rocaille, I’m looking at you!) fit me like my favorite clothes. But Chanel? They itch and make my skin crawl and need to be washed off (again, with exceptions). And I simply don’t understand most Dior scents. Or the newer Lutens creations (love the older ones, though). Hermes, Roja Dove, L’Artisan, Maitre Parfumer et Gantier don’t work for me either. Which is probably for the best, since I need to make it to an age of approximately 300 in order to use all the perfume stuff stashed beneath my sink….

  • Maria B. says:

    Alas, the only Chanel I can come close to wearing is No. 19, and, even then, I don’t.

  • nicevulady says:

    I like Sublime and Ma Liberte by Patou actually. Caron I find a bit of a meh, but usually I can find one fragrance in a house that I like. There are many houses which I haven’t sampled, unfortunately. So much perfume, so little time.

  • Chloe says:

    I do not like Lutens, Guerlain, Kurkdjian, Tauer, or most of Roja Dove. I understand why people like Chanel, but they are too cold for me.

    I do like Patou and Caron, but the Caron perfumes and urns have both been ruined; the house is no longer what it was. Quel dommage.

  • Maya says:

    The first perfume I fell in love with when I was a young teen was Patou Joy. It will always be special to me. But but but, when I really got into perfume, I felt that I should like some perfumes and houses and I tried and failed. Caron, except for Montaigne, is not for me either. And Lutens and Amouage and Kurkdjian and LVMH Guerlain. There are a few others. Happily there are those perfumes and houses that i love! It works out in the end. 🙂

  • Rina (USA) says:

    Creed, Bond, Serge..