Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Tocca Giulietta

Every once in awhile, a floral perfume comes along that I actually don't hate. Tocca Giulietta is one. It has a particularly fresh opening, it's the green apple and pink tulips that hit you at first and sends you into instant vacation mode. But this is a vacation that I've not taken (yet). The scent lingers on the floral plane for awhile, then the sweetness of vanilla orchid settles in, finally landing on a bit of woods and musk for the drydown. But the effect of the numerous floral notes (also including lily of the valley, Bulgarian rose and heliotrope) never quite leaves completely, making this a particularly well-balanced and poetic scent. Unfortunately the scent does not last very long on my skin.

The story behind the scent is memorable: it is an ode to the holidays spent on the island of Corsica by filmmaker Federico Fellini and actress Giulietta Masina. So in essence, this is a love story in a bottle, and it evokes a certain dreaminess with its freshness that is rather rare. Overall, it's definitely not my usual type of scent and I can't say I'll wear it with frequency, but there will be those moods, and when they arrive, I will happily wear this scent and think of shores unseen.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

'Fumes! #1

Here lies Ms. Carrie, she was moderately kind. She wasn't too sweet, but very discreet. She smelled like a dream, as it would seem, but could never make up her mind.

First up is Penhaligons Lily & Spice. This perfume IS my childhood. My grandmother (who passed away last year) raised prize lilies and was a gardener supreme. She taught me how to garden early on in my life and I even had my own patch in her huge garden. I did not retain the green thumb I once had, unfortunately. The fresh initial burst of lily is so true to the flower, it's feminine to the Nth degree. Then, pretty quickly, a bit of sweetness sets in, and that's where it stays with the drydown, a perfect mix of the two. The spice is not very evident on my skin at all, but it is satisfying enough as it is. This is a light scent that would be the perfect gift, because it will absolutely delight anyone. Mothers, sisters, friends, bosses, you're golden. Take note, early Christmas shoppers!

Next is one of my new favorites, and I will be singing its praises forEVAH! It's Le Labo Oud 27, and I want to have its babies. I have had a fascination with Oudh scents for awhile, trying them one by one, filtering out the bland from the overworked from the exceptional. I love woods, and Oudh is the ultimate in woodiness, but it's tricky. It can be overpowering or just plain WRONG when paired with certain notes. Le Labo Oud 27 is one of the simplest I've tried, it's extremely clean-smelling, bright and fresh. It has an almost plasticky quality to it when first spritzed, which I actually don't mind. It's truly a unisex fragrance, and it's perfect for layering. This is the perfume equivalent of a favorite black leather jacket or cashmere v-neck sweater, you will love it for eternity and will keep going back to it because you love how you feel when you wear it.

Parfumerie Generale's Private Collection: Une Crime Exotique is one of those perfumes that gets you all giddy in anticipation and just sort of fails miserably once you try it on your skin. Harumph. It was so promising, with it's spicy notes and sweetness with tea and sandalwood, but it just smells like cinnamon cake on me. Cheap, pre-packaged cinnamon cake. This scent is suitable for the fans of very sweet gourmands only.

Next is another from Parfumerie Generale, Felanilla. This scent has a much-hyped skank factor, so I had to try it, as I dabble in skanky perfumes somewhat. I will be frank, I am totally confused by this perfume. This is the note list: vanilla absolute, saffron, orris, banana wood, hay absolute, amber. Here's what it actually smells like on my skin: POWDER. Effin' baby powder. It was the first scrubber I've tried in quite some time, and even after a vigorous scrubbing, it was still there, lurking, daring me to sniff again and make my face contort in agony. It's the car crash you can't help but turn your head to look at, it's a monster. A bad, bad monster.

So, that's it for now. 'Fumes #2 to follow soon!

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Mission Statement

Like many beauty blogs, this one is born of obsession. I am in awe of the ability a drop of perfume has to transform a woman completely, to change a mood, decision-making, and possibly the course of a life. I cannot even imagine life without experiencing the thrill of trying a new skin care product... "Could this be The One?" I am constantly seeking out the perfect colors, formulations and fragrances to flatter, enliven and enlighten, all in the name of improvement. If anyone reading this blog right now has ever found a set of colors, scent or a regimen and said "Eh, I guess this is good enough.", you can stop reading. What I write is not meant for the cool-headed, the reasonable or those who are easily pleased. I write for those who ask a lot of questions, are continually maddened by disappointment, and who experience major triumph from a good haul. Slip your neck inside the noose, you belong to Beauty.

I am going to do reviews, gush, expose the bad and push the good, ramble on and occasionally be short and to the point... but I will always care, because this stuff matters.