Helena Rubinstein Wanted : Now you see it … follow-up

A while back I wrote about various scents that have come out and if you waited too long to try them — poof! — they were gone. Helena Rubinstein’s Wanted, fronted by Demi Moore, was one such fragrance.

wanted perfumeWhen I looked for it, it had vamoosed from the department stores, with no way to sample it. And I am definitely not a blind-buy kind of gal, no matter how inexpensive something is at the discounters, so that was out.

What really made me want to try this was the fact that it was done by well-known perfumers Dominique Ropion (he of Carnal Flower fame and many more) and Carlos Benaim. That assured me that whatever this turned out to be, it would have some redeeming qualities and wouldn’t be dreck.

So you can imagine my delight when a very generous perfume lover sent me some in the mail, along with several other lovely goodies. Thank you, kind lady!

Notes are: magnolia, ylang-ylang, iris, vanilla, cedar and sandalwood

Wanted kicks off with a soft, lightly citrus opening that feels like there’s a bit more than ylang-ylang and magnolia in there singing harmony — perhaps an unnamed supporting player? A hint of plummyness surfaces a bit later on, then it eases into a creamy, slightly woody finish that’s smooth, smooth, smooth. It hums along nicely for several hours.

The magnolia component had me itching to compare it to Acqua Parma Magnolia Nobile, but they seemed to be from two different schools. The Wanted comes off softer, creamier and a bit drier. The Nobile rolls out quite the tangy — potent, even — opening, courtesy of lemon and bergamot, and as it develops, it’s clear that this scent is taking its magnolia down a sunnier path that winds closer to the citrus grove.

Anyway, the Wanted is lovely on its own merits, and it gets bonus points for not being fruitchouli or pink, and having a fairly classy bottle (would love this in a mini).

All in all, it’s pretty good for a celebrity scent. As my generous gifter said, “Demi Moore should be proud she signed on for it– it really is better than so many other celebu-sniffs out there.”

When writing about a fragrance, it helps me to find another scent or two that seems a bit similar and has the same type of feel, so it’s easier to place it in the perfume universe. The Wanted put me in mind of Dior’s New Look 1947, not so much for its olfactory similarity (the Dior’s more powdery, floral, and expensive smelling, natch), but that it falls into that same class of soft, lovely and refined scents that are a pleasure to wear and unlikely to offend anyone.

Wanted strikes me as a good go-to perfume for those times when you’re not sure what to put on but want something pretty, polished and dependable, not overly fresh and not too warm. I’ve found it a nice fit for the fall days we’ve had recently that started out in chilly mornings and hit the high 70s to low 80s later in the day.

I’m not sure if I’ll end up investing in a full bottle, but I’m quite happy to have my decant and enjoy it while it lasts.

  • Eldarwen22 says:

    I keep looking for Katia that was released by the figure skater but every time it pops up on ebay, the price seems to be sky high. In my world, I’d rather pay $100 or more on niche or $200 plus on an Amouage. I’m just thankful that I have Tocca’s Giuletta and a couple others for something light and pretty.

    • Ann says:

      Hi, lady! I was so hoping that you had found some Katia by now. But hang in there and don’t give up hope — I just know there’s a reasonably priced bottle out there waiting for you with your name on it. And I hear you on spending that much money …

      • Eldarwen22 says:

        I actually did score a super cheap bottle at a garage sale a couple months ago. But it had gone bad. It was either bad storing or it just doesn’t age well. It did smell like Katia but it was rancid from top to bottom. I’m writing it off as a $2 loss. I think that Katia was discontinued because either Eketrina Gordeeva decided to discontinue it or Target did because people didn’t seem to have that great of an interest in figure skating. Who knows. I keep hoping and do keep an eye out. But good grief, it’s not vintage Mitsouko or gold.

  • Suzanne says:

    Ann, I am not surprised that a perfume angel named Meg made your wish come true on this. Ain’t the perfume blogosphere grand? Where else do so many wishes come true?

    Have a good birthday this week, lady! If the hurricane doesn’t take out the entire east coast, then you’ll be getting some more wishes come true. <3

    • Suzanne says:

      Remind me not to have whiskey with breakfast anymore. That way I won’t repeat the same phrase three times within the space of five short sentences. 😀

      • Ann says:

        Thanks, Suzanne! You are too funny! But not to worry, I’ve done the same thing many times myself. Yes, the perfume world is full of wonderful angels, including you!

  • Meg says:

    Very glad you enjoyed it, ma’am. 🙂 Refills whenever you wish!

    • Ann says:

      Thank you again so much, Meg! You are indeed a perfume angel! Tea is coming your way just as soon as I make it through Halloween …

  • Musette says:

    Wow. I must’ve been living under a boulder when this came out – I have no recollection of this whatsoever. In fact, I would’ve sworn on a stack of scent strips that Helena Rubenstein was long gone as a company. Huh.

    It does sound pretty though. And you’re right – some days all you want is ‘pretty’. In fact, that’s what I want most days, though my version of ‘pretty’ is probably more like a velociraptor’s version, since I think Epic in 90degree weather is Just Grand.


    • Ann says:

      Hey, sweet M! Nope, not living under a rock, it just came and went that fast! HR did have a little comeback here in the U.S. in the late ’90s-early ’00s, because I remember buying the most gorgeous red HR lipstick from Saks in Beverly Hills around 2002-2003. But it wasn’t long after that I think it completely disappeared. And you’re right, sometimes a littlepretty is just what’s needed.