Thursday, 26 March 2015

Perfume Thursday-: Magie Noire by Lancome

Magie Noire (translates to Black Magic) presents itself in a bottle that does imply something bold, dark and dangerous lies within........

Upon first impression it is indeed bold,  this is not a fragrance for those who want to be a wall flower. This is a fragrance that will announce your arrival to the room so be prepared to be noticed.
It is without doubt a very feminine, sensual fragrance that we imagine being worn by someone immaculately dressed and made-up, who is very aware of the power of seduction.

Nickie detected the blackcurrant straight away - she described it as 'fruity with a green edge, as if the leaf had just been picked from the bush'. Indeed the green notes of blackcurrant leaf and galbanum (our smell of the week) are noticeable immediately, quickly followed by sweet and woody notes (we noticed honey, patchouli, cedar).

There is an air of quality to this fragrance, in Harry's words - 'rather posh and reminds me of my mum' - and we know she is a very classy lady!

After wearing it now for an hour or so it is much more subdued, the floral notes emerge making it far more wearable and enjoyable than we thought at first smell (the civet was somewhat overpowering at first and we were a little worried!).

So our recommendation is to give this one a chance - give it a good hour before you make up your mind.  It will be worth it!

Thursday, 19 March 2015

Euphoria - Calvin Klein

What a fabulous bottle - very different, very tactile but possibly not as easy to spray as others.

The perfume is sweet and feminine (in a girlie way) and reminds us of a combination of Gucci Rush and Viktor & Rolf Flowerbomb.

Having worn it for a few hours now I can report that the aroma doesn't change that much.  It seems to just slowly carry on fading without changing - slowly, very slowly, it is still very apparent.

Given that it is fairly sweet, it does become a little cloying after a while.  We chose this perfume as we had smelt it on someone else and loved it.  I do think that's how I'd like to experience it again - on someone else.  It's a shame really as I had high hopes - the individual aromas of lotus flower (our aroma of the week), pomegranate, orchid, white musk, amber, mahogany and violet had us imagining something quite different.

Have you tried Euphoria?  What did you think?

Thursday, 12 March 2015

Agent Provocateur - Maitresse

With the promise of something raunchy, sexy and a little wicked we were all very pleased when Maitresse by Agent Provocateur was chosen as this week's perfume.  Not only that, but since it includes Suederal, our aroma of the week, we were champing at the bit - anything with a bit of leather in is always welcome!

Well disappointment hit us hard.  This perfume definitely doesn't 'do what it says on the tin'.  It is pleasant but not sexy.  It is inoffensive but not wicked, it is wearable but not raunchy.  It isn't what we were expecting at all.

It opens with a floral notes and pretty much stays that way - and even then it doesn't stay for long. The key floral is violet, but hooray, it isn't little purple sweets violet, more fresh floral violet which then morphs into more flowers (ylang ylang, lotus, rose, jasmine, osmanthus and iris).  There is patchouli lingering in there somewhere along with the suede, but these aren't obvious, I'm still trying to sniff them out.

It is a safe perfume, a typical perfume and one we all thought we'd experienced before but knew that in fact we hadn't.

The sexy minx on the bottle belies the true aroma, don't be misled.  This is a tame aroma - it is wearable for sure, but docile, safe and doesn't warrant you donning your leather basque and stilettos in anticipation of a naughty night.

Thursday, 5 March 2015

Miss Charming - Juliette has a Gun

Rock meets romance in this new, niche brand, inspired by Shakespeare, brainchild of Romano Ricci - great grandson of Nina Ricci.  Good noses in that family!  We were lured towards this perfume by the description on the Juliette has a Gun website:

"The perfume of a virgin witch, docile and provocative, elegant and sensual. At first glance, the miss appears rather innocent. But don't trust your intuition...If she's a rose, don't forget she got spines. A fragrance that combines ingenuousness and lucidity."

From this description we were expecting a challenge - the rose with spines description had us hooked!  Our initial impression was of a fruity juice but not necessarily predominantly strawberry, our aroma of the week - Miss Charming hit us with crushed berries, a thick, sweet, red jam of fruits. Delicious.  

With its simple formulation, comprising roses, strawberry, lychee, red berries and musk, you'd expect it to be far fruitier and sweeter than it is.  We were pleasantly surprised to find a much more wearable, fresh, semi-sweet blast.  Lovely.  However Miss Charming is flighty and has little sticking power - sadly, she disappears too quickly.

The perfume starts as a lively fruit cordial explosion.  The beautiful, elegant Moroccan Rose comes through once the perfume has had time to settle but the perfume doesn't then change much once the rose is established. The dry down is almost non existent but the overall effect of this fairly short-lived perfume is fun, frivolous and very much suited to a carefree, confident, charming character.

This is a wonderfully easy-to-wear daytime blend.  Although not targeted specifically towards the younger generation, we feel it is more appropriate to and would be adored by young adults although for many the price bracket might be prohibitive.  We all agreed we liked it for its ease of wear and instant nose-appeal.  It sums up good-girl charm but, bad girls that we are, we were hoping for for a slightly more feisty Miss Charming - for something a little more daring and naughty!

Thursday, 26 February 2015

La Fumee Ottoman - Miller Harris

This perfume is the most sultry, smoky, heavy aroma that we have worn - ever! 

Inspired by East meets West where spices meet roses, and incense meets sweetness and exotic woods, the perfume contains a mix of delightful aromas that blend together to form something rather fascinating.  Top notes of bergamot with spicy cardamon (our aroma of the week) and cumin are blended with rose, patchouli, sandalwood, vanilla, tonka bean and layers of incense and a hint of amber.  The overall effect is one of smoke - layered upon more smoke.

My initial impression after the first spray was of smoky clothes picked up off the floor after the night before - and oh what a night, a night spent drinking, laughing and dancing in a smoky club.  The smokiness lingers on my wrist (and how!) but eventually wafts off leaving sweet vanilla clinging to my skin.  The sweetness loiters, it is in no hurry to go...I'm certain I can still smell it 7 hours later.  Each time I sniff the memory of last night's dirty dancing reappear leaving a smile on my face.

La fumee ottoman isn't a perfume I'd wear often - the initial smokiness is almost dirty in a 'fag-drag' kind of way, but the overall effect as the perfume changes is quite dramatic and certainly worth experiencing.  It is reminiscent of days gone by where you came home with your clothes, hair and skin smelling of smoke simply by having a drink in a busy pub.  

We normally recommend vetiver to add a smoky element to perfumes, but there is no vetiver here which surprised us.  Lyn Harris has achieved a clever smoky-sweet haven using her own unique blend.

If you like rich heady smoky perfumes, you'll love this one.

Thursday, 19 February 2015

Chance by Chanel

This is one I've been looking forward to review ever since I smelt it on a friend on New Year's Eve. As I kissed her Happy New Year the aroma hit me and I found it beguiling.  I knew I had to own some.

It is beautiful and easy to wear and somehow makes you feel special.  It is unchallenging, but in a good way since there is no need to worry that people will shift away from you on the train or in a restaurant whilst they to escape your aroma (not that I ever worry about that!!).

It is pretty and feminine and definitely has the makings of becoming another Chanel classic.

Described as a floral (with jasmine and hyacinth) we could detect more elements of fruit than flowers.  Layers of pineapple (our chosen aroma of the week) and lemon enfold darker notes of patchouli, vetiver and punchy pink pepper whilst still keep the perfume light and graceful.

I only purchased this perfume recently and it had me at the bottle.  Round and chunky with a golden, mirrored band running down the bottle's sides, it is tactile and substantial.

There is nothing about this perfume or its packaging that I can fault.  Buy some!

Thursday, 12 February 2015

Rosee de Nuit by Friedemodin

It's not often that a perfume of the week receives universal approval in the office, but this week's perfume - Rosee de Nuit by Friedemodin - gained a big thumbs up from everyone.

"Soft, round and warm, fresh and comforting, pretty and lovely" are just a few of the positive descriptors  whispered around the office after spraying and wearing.  In fact more than just one spray - a few sneaky sprays were had this week as we all gradually fell in love with Rosee de Nuit.

The perfume name prepares you for a rush of floral, but on the contrary - this perfume is softly tinged with woods (teak, patchouli and sandalwood) and gentle spices (cardamon and pimento berries) with gentle layers of violet.

When it comes to violets I usually brace myself for a rush of little purple sweets, but this perfume is different - and a big relief.  Beta ionone, an aroma chemical and our chosen aroma of the week, gives a soft hint of violets that are warm and inviting as if it wants to wrap around your skin and embrace you. This is apparent in Rosee de Nuit - it caresses and cares and makes you feel safe, secure and serene.

It's akin to a favourite grandmother tucking you in at night, but this grandmother isn't typical, she's updated her wardrobe, her make up, her scent and her style.  She's still a granny but she's chic and cool.  And she's probably wearing Rosee de Nuit, love her.