100% Love {MORE} and Benevolent Blogging

ben blogging.jpgREMINDER: As you’ve seen all over the perfume blogs, we have joined in this Mother’s Day Benevolent Blogging effort. We are giving $1.00 for every comment you leave today and tomorrow. Our chosen charity is the Orphan Foundation of America. We figured, as we close in on Mother’s Day, who could use more support than kids without mothers? If you’d like to learn more about this effort, visit Benevolent Blogging. Tune in tomorrow for our Special Edition of Mother’s Day Fragrance Recommendations.

Now, on to today’s fragrance…

06xmore.jpgI got my first sample of S-Perfume 100% Love from Patty in the original Candy Samples box. I´d read about it, and a fragrance described as (essentially) rose, chocolate and incense is just wrong, even if it´s put together by a genius like Sophia Grojsman. So my expectations were low, in spite of the rave reviews I´d read on Now Smell This and elsewhere. I don´t love rose (although we´re working in it.) I am not a fan of food fragrances. Incense was the only piece that made it interesting.

I was enchanted by 100% Love from the first tentative sniff. The rose is there most strongly in the opening, and it is a frank, clear rose without ever becoming the à¢â‚¬Å“roseà¢â‚¬? in quotations I´ve learned to loathe so much in perfumery: that plastic, too-sweet room freshener rose that makes my stomach turn. There´s something about the chocolate à¢â‚¬” which follows right behind the rose à¢â‚¬” that keeps it honest. The chocolate is a bar of high-grade extra-dark, or mole, or the smell of cocoa hulls, strong but not sweet. A few minutes later, the incense wanders in and hangs around for the rest of the story.

There is nothing else that smells remotely like this. You can parse the smells (yes, there is the rose, there is the chocolate, here comes the incense) but they meld together so beautifully and seamlessly that it is easy to imagine 100% Love as something God thought up but just didn´t get around to creating, until Grojsman picked up the brief.

I find 100% Love to be reasonably long-lasting, so I wasn’t begging for a stronger version. But other reviews I read expressed a desire for stronger juice.

The 100% Love {MORE} version is, in fact, much stronger right out of the bottle. To my nose the most significant difference in this version is that the chocolate is omnipresent, outweighing the rose even in the opening, although the rose is there. The rose-and-chocolate duo smells a bit different to me than the original, and I also detect a mild green note in the middle of {MORE} that I do not smell in the original, as if you were getting a bit of the leaves with your roses. The rest of the presentation is the same, more or less, with the incense slowly fading in over the first 10 minutes, although I never get as much incense from the {MORE} as in the original. To me it renders itself almost woody, like walking into an old wooden storage closet. Not a criticism; just different.

I spent several days last week applying and re-applying the two, sniffing back and forth. While they are from the same stock, they are not the same fragrance. The {MORE} is more opaque, although there is nothing heavy or cloying about it. It has the interesting density of, say, Passage d´Enfer, which manages to be bold and buoyant simultaneously. The chocolate in the {MORE} version is especially rich and dense, and in the first minute or two it is extraordinary. The {MORE} version also has a bit of spiciness in the drydown à¢â‚¬” a pinch of cinnamon that hints at a carnation.

Which is better? That would be a matter of personal preference, depending on whether you want more rose and don´t mind the lightness (the original,) or heavier with more chocolate and a hint of spice (the latter.) They are both beautiful and I think that {MORE} is strong enough it should please those people clamoring for, well, more.

Which one do I like better? I changed the answer to that question four times before posting this. As a rule I like stronger concentrations, and I am wild about the choco-Nirvana opening and the carnation in the {MORE} version. However, the thought of never smelling the soaring rose of the original, a rose that makes me think of the clear, deep ringing notes of a glass bell, and the stunning incense of that drydown fills me with sadness. So I suppose, if I were forced to choose, I would reluctantly choose the original. Fortunately, though, I don’t have to choose. I’d recommend owning both.

100% Love {MORE} is available for $80 (60ml) from S-Perfume. The original version is also available. There is a sample program.


The winner of the Fracas Giveaway is … Emotenote! Please send me your address via Contact us. Congratulations!

  • March says:

    Iris — If you like the original that much, you definitely need to try the {MORE} — I still haven’t tried them layered but I am guessing that might be magnificent!

  • IrisLA says:

    Thanks for your review, March. I own and adore the original. Its light blending of rose, chocolate and incense is perfection to me. I don’t think I’ll enjoy {More} as much, but your review convinced me that I must order a sample to satisfy my curiosity.

  • March says:

    Pam — she did both. I am assuming she did the {MORE} as a result of requests for a stronger concentration. I would think this particular fragrance is the most commercially successful of the S-Perfumes, although I could be wrong. As I said in my review, I didn’t find the original lacking in strength (things tend to last and last on my skin), but that was a fairly common complaint from others.

  • Pam says:

    March, these sound very interesting. Sometimes I like Grojsman’s work, sometimes I don’t. Did she do both the original and the {More} as well? Regardless, these frags sound worthy of some serious testing. 🙂

  • March says:

    Victoria, I can’t remember how much you liked the original, although apparently you did!

    It does stay very fresh, almost green to me, even though it is, as you say, darker and richer. Hmmmm, maybe I’ll go put some on right now…

  • Victoria says:

    I really enjoy the new version of 100% Love. It has an interesting fresh touch in the heart, although every element of it is darker and richer. I cannot seem to pick a favourite yet.

  • March says:

    Jenny — You are welcome, and I am glad you got your pkg and are enjoying it! Is there anything in particular you’re loving?

  • March says:

    Katie, huh, I’ll think about that the next time I wear it. I missed the incense a little. To me, incense + chocolate = wood. I am all about the scraped resin, BTW.

    Those emoticons, they’re addicting. I keep looking for excuses to use :* or maybe :^o

    l-)Just seems rude, y’know?

  • March says:

    Mimi — eeewwww! That is just …. heinous.

  • March says:

    Patty, as always, a @};- to you for introducing me to this and so many other wonderful things.

    Yeah, you and your chocolate. Did you wear the TC to the office? They are going to introduce a no-fragrance policy if you’re not careful! Wait, how ’bout MdeM!!! That’ll slay them.:-&

  • Katie says:

    Huh, weird. I getting more incense from the MORE than from the regular. I think because the note that smells like a bar of baking chocolate was sits slightly taller in MORE it lent the incense a more scraped resin scent on me. I think for that I do prefer the MORE to the regular, but neither one really are my cup of tea. :(|) I do not know why I put the monkey head emoticon there. I only just noticed it right now and needed to use it. Likewise for this 8-x one. And ~:> Okay, think I got that out of my system now… scary: :o)

  • Hey March,

    You don’t like foody frags, check this one out on my site, very,very unusual, ROTFMAO!

  • Patty says:

    You nudged me to try my 100% MORE. It should be no small surprise that I like the MORE better. I was alway smore enamored of how the chocolate morphed the rose, so the the heavier dark bittersweet chocolate works better for me. The other one seemed just a bit soupy.

    Yup, this one is definitely working better for me.

  • Jenny says:

    Oh, these sound wonderful, although I share some apprehensions about rose. Chocorose…sounds luscious! By the way, I never responded with my huge thanks for the awesome samples–it’s been a whirlwind these past couple of weeks but I’m very, very appreciative. And the charity blogging–awesome! Happy Mother’s Day.

  • March says:

    R — who? WHO doesn’t adore our 100% Love?!? Off with their heads!!

    The one thing I didn’t try (I don’t know why) was layering them. I bet that’s not a bad way to go, either.

  • March says:

    Cait — huh, now that I’ve signed off on chocorose, that chococofferose doesn’t sound half bad. Thanks.

  • March says:

    Emote — wow, a whole family of scrubbers! I feel that way about (shhhhh — don’t tell anyone — Caron! You can have ’em all!)

    You could definitely clear a restaurant with Fracas. Just thinking about eating while drenched in Fracas makes my stomach lurch. Fracas is definitely for sitting on your dais and waving your sceptre around at the huddled masses.

  • March says:

    Cheez — I REALLY do not like foody frags. There is nothing foody about this one. The chocolate exists as a theory, not an edible note, if that makes any sense. In my review I toned down how completely disgusted I was by the notes listed in this one. Offhand I cannot think of another frag I was repulsed by (when reading about) and so enamored with upon smelling. Based on what you’ve written, I think the original would be better for you.

  • March says:

    Justine — aHA!!! Proving the emotional connections we can make with fragrances. Hmmm, I am trying to imagine the frame of mind that would induce me to reapply Borneo… nope, not coming up with anything –:-j

  • March says:

    Cait — I can actually sorta see the Yankee Candle aspect to it. The choco-rose is so odd. Based on what I know you like thus far, I am guessing it is, frankly, not your thing. But now I am remembering that worked out rather nicely for me, didn’t it…:-“

  • March says:

    Steph — eh, give it a try if you get a chance. It’s such an lovely and unusual thing.

  • March says:

    ViNoir, I think the scrubbers are almost as interesting as the successes. Yesterday Marina astonished me by saying my Beloved Tea for Two is a nasty ultra-scrubber.:(

  • March says:

    M, yeah, we’re doing today and tomorrow, we thought there would be more traffic than Saturday/Sunday, which was the original plan.

    I love this 100% Love… we are in agreement.

  • March says:

    Sybil, that list is getting looooonger every day…\:d/

  • Robin says:

    So glad my adored 100% Love has found another fan. It is underappreciated, IMHO. Have the new {More} but haven’t tried it yet, although from your description would guess I’ll prefer the original too.

  • Cait says:

    P.S. I love L’Or de Torrente, a coffee and baby rose combo where the coffee smells very chocolatey. It’s a must try.

  • Emotenote says:

    Oh Oh Oh, fan, fan, I’m sooo excited! Thanks March. I’ll let you know how many people I can drive out of a restaurant with the Fracas! This will be my private Queen of the Day fragrance.

    Also, I have to say the S-perfumes don’t do much for me. They had to be scrubbed, even though they seemed like they would be really, um, soothing. I like to layer my Rose with other things, but nothing in the foodie family.

  • Cheezwiz says:

    Hmmm… I usually avoid foody scents like the plague, and rose scents are pretty tricky with my chemistry.

    I think if I ran across this though, I would be tempted to try the original. The reviews seem to be almost unanimous raves, so there must be something about this. I think the intense version would be too much for me. Love to gobble chocolate, but not wear it 😉

  • Justine says:

    The other day I was feeling especially sad and went home and doused myself with my sample of Serendipity, a fragrance I hadn’t especially liked the first time around. Turns out, in times of emotional distress, I take my chocolate every way I can get it, and it did make me feel better.

    However, mixing all the chocolate with rose isn’t something I’d ever have thought of (note to self: don’t quit the day job to take up perfumery). Reading your review, as usual, makes me want to try both versions.

  • Cait says:

    Ok, Ok, I need to give 100% Love another chance. This winter it smelled like drugstore candles and reminded me of shopping at the Sears Mall in the 70s with my babysitters, of Shakey’s Pizza and fake Tiffany lamp motifs. I know, these are strange subjective associations, but THAT’s why I didn’t go for it earlier.

  • Steph says:

    Another lemming joins the pack! :)>-

  • violetnoir says:

    March, I tried the original when it first came out in early 2005, because I love Ms. Grojsman’s creations, especially (believe it or not) Eternity. 🙂

    However, I did not like 100% LOVE at all. It was, as you and Patty like to say, a scrubber.

    Oh well: Reasonable minds can always differ, and since there are so many “fish” in that perfume sea, I had no problem moving on to the next new fragrance. Plus, I saved my pennies!


  • Marina says:

    I agree with absolutely everything. I also though it had more chocolate and that it was opaque…and I also can’t really choose between the two and need both.

    So your charity days are today and tomorrow?

  • sybil says:

    Wow, what a great review! 2 more on “the list,” which is approaching notebook length…And I’m not a rose fan either (yet, anyway!)