4.25.2011

The Search for a New Signature Perfume: Notes

My recent post on the search for a new signature perfume received a tremendous response. I loved hearing your thoughts on signature scents and the ones that you love!

Since then I have indeed gone on the hunt. The ensuing posts related to this topic will describe the various fragrances I’ve sampled on my road to finding “the one”. I will admit that I have felt somewhat intimidated at the daunting task of describing these scents accurately. Perfume is such a personal thing- different notes do different things to different people. Therefore, my reactions to the various perfumes might not (and will probably not) be the same as your reactions. It all depends on what you are privy to.

For example, I am usually drawn to florals, the rose note in particular- The smell of roses really moves me. Others might be drawn less to floral scents and more to fruity or oriental scents- so, as a caveat, my reviews of these fragrances are entirely subject to my personal taste. Each description is a recording of my thoughts at the end of the day after sampling the fragrance (in most cases I tried the fragrance more than once). At the end of each review I will list whether or not the fragrance is a contender for my signature scent. I hope you enjoy…



Tom Ford: Black Orchid

Black Orchid is a perfume I have tried in the past and have previously reviewed on my blog. It’s been a few years so I decided to try it again and see if my thoughts remain the same.

The first thing that draws me to Black Orchid is its bottle. That gorgeous black bottle looks like the vial of poison that Shakespeare’s Romeo bought from the apothecary and so tragically consumed on the Capulet crypt. It has a wicked, naughty air to its design. I was enticed. Bottle aside, the fragrance is dark and lovely… and my previous observation on it holds true:

Tom Ford Black Orchid is a deep, sensual fragrance- very heavy but not too overpowering, making it perfect for fall and winter or even early spring when it is still cold outside but the warm weather is burgeoning and on its way. The scent is rich and luxurious, making one feel as though perhaps they were a femme fatale riding the Orient Express in Agatha Christie’s famous novel. The spicy accord to the scent suggests one who has visited exotic places. Main notes include: bergamot, citrus, mandarin, ylang-ylang, black gardenia, patchouli and orchid. While I found this fragrance mysterious and moving, I am not certain if it could be my signature scent and will keep looking.


Chantecaille Pétales
Chantecaille has been all the rage recently after Angelina Jolie was spotted applying their lip gloss in the shade Love during this year’s ceremony at the Golden Globes. Chantecaille is a luxury beauty line based out of New York (Although Sylvie Chantecaille, the founder of the company, is French) that includes makeup, skin care and fragrances. I had only heard of them after the lip gloss in Love hullabaloo and was pleased to find their line of perfumes on a recent jaunt through Bloomingdales. I was drawn to Pétales based on the description from my friend Renee- who has helped me several times when visiting the adjacent Jo Malone counter. Pétales is the perfect fragrance for any lovers of white flowers. Gardenia, tuberose and jasmine are the prevalent notes in this fresh and romantic blend with a dry down that brings out the mellow tunes of cedar and sandalwood. Initially I wasn’t blown away with the scent but after a half hour or so when the dry down occurred I became entranced. Pétales is the perfect perfume to wear on a romantic summer evening. Its essence is that of a gorgeous bouquet of gardenias picked at twilight. The perfume itself is quite expensive- $175 for 75ml, but even so… this perfume is enchanting enough to be a definite contender…



Balenciaga: Paris

As you can imagine, I am already partial to a scent that is called Paris, so I thought I’d give Balenciaga Paris a try. Paris is a very sophisticated scent. It is a powdery, creamy violet that turns slightly woodsy after an hour or so of wear. The fragrance is minimalist, yet modern- there are not a lot of complexities to it- but the general sensation is that it is very pleasant. One of the criteria for my new signature scent is that it be bold- but not too bold. I would like to be able to wear it everyday and not tire of it. The bottle and packaging is quite beautiful. It has a an art deco feel to it. I could easily see this sitting on my counter and fitting in quite nicely amongst my toiletries. I am not certain if this is a contender… the violet note is lovely, but I am starting to miss my favorite rose note. Perhaps I will return to this another day.



Annick Goutal: Petite Cherie

Without even knowing the story behind how Annick Goutal created Petite Cherie for her young daughter, I could have guessed. Petite Cherie is a precious little scent. It is a pure and innocent smelling fruity floral with not a lot of staying power. I could easily see spritzing this on myself after a shower on a fresh Spring day. The main notes are peaches, pears, musk, rose and vanilla. It is, overall, a very pleasant scent- but probably not my signature scent. I need something bolder and less sweet.



Marc Jacobs Daisy

I had to try Marc Jacob’s Daisy to see what all the fuss is about. It is the #2 best selling fragrance at Sephora. So I realized going into trying Daisy that I might run into the problem of meeting another family member with the same signature scent! That aside, Daisy is lovely and I can see why it is so popular. It is a fresh and playful perfume, one that reads as very bright. The main notes are: strawberry, violet, jasmine, vanilla and ruby red grapefruit. I strongly detected the violet note, which also reminded me of Balenciaga’s Paris. This is a great perfume for daytime and casual occasions when one is feeling fresh and whimsical. But I am not sure if it is for me… Again, I am longing for roses…

I think you know where the direction of the next perfume post is going…

I would love to hear your thoughts...


And now for some housekeeping:

If you haven't already entered the giveaway for the beautiful Love Quotes scarf... it isn't too late! I will announce the winner this Thursday.

Thank you for helping me celebrate the launch of my new YouTube channel. Check in periodically for new uploads. This weeks uploads include What to Wear to the Theatre (already uploaded) and My Three Favorite Teas (upcoming).

The Daily Connoisseur is now available on Amazon Kindle

18 comments:

Anonymous said...

If you are considering the Chantecaille scent at that price point, I'd suggest you check out Kilian. Their Love and Tears is a very good white floral, Beyond Love is arguably the best tuberose. I'd think you get at least a superior perfume for your money. Also, Tuberose Gardenia is a very good white floral from Estee Lauder, lower price point but terrific quality. A white floral is the perfect Mother's Day gift, treat yourself by then!
Irene.
PS: Not affiliated to either EL or Kilian.

Kori said...

Thanks for the tips...can't wait to smell them all! Hope you had a great Easter. Kori xoxo

Merveilleux said...

You've done quite well describing the scents. The Tom Ford Black Orchid is intriguing. Chantecaille Petales sounds nice too.
Have you smelled Nina Ricci's L'air du temps? It has rose and other florals like iris, spicy carnation and gardenia. It's definitely worthy of signature scent status!

Anonymous said...

Hello Daily Connoisseur, it is me again anon of the 1st comment.
I was just browsing for perfumes myself, and remembered your quest. Have you ever heard of Ormonde Jayne, it is a London based perfumery. Absolute first class. I have tried almost all their scents and there are some real gems in the collection. Maybe you can check them out when you are in London again. I wouldn't buy unsniffed though - I did and got something unexpected. Their scents are truly unique. As such good luck finding anyone wearing them :) They have a nice sampler, expensive at 44 GBP but possibly worth it.
Also, have you heard about "Perfumes The Guide" by Turin and Sanchez. It is a fun little book, you might want to check it out.
Sorry for my long comments, perfume is my passion :)
Irene.
PS: Again, not affiliated with either OJ or the book.

Jane and Lance Hattatt said...

Hello:
My search concluded with Chanel No.5 many, many years ago and has not ventured further. Lance has remained without any signature scent......just freshly soaped each day.

We look forward to hearing ofyour final choice.

Anonymous said...

Check out Chloe's eau de parfum - that's my signature scent and is rose heavy! Incredible longevity too - I wrote about it here:

http://ninatoilette.wordpress.com/2011/02/13/my-perfume-collection/

Sheryl said...

I wear Christian Dior's Portofino because it reminds me of being in Anthropologie! Very clean and light. Annick Goutal's L'eau Hadrien is a favorite as well. By the way, your YouTube "Theatre" piece is ADORABLE!

hostess of the humble bungalow said...

I like Belle de Nuit Orchidee (Moonflower Orchid)
by Darance from Grasse, France

My DIL wears Daisy and it suits her...I think finding a fragrance takes time and there are so many more choice these days than when my Mother had her Shalimar and Chanel No. 5

Hope that you have fun, and i am looking forward to the tea post!

Hostess
XO

Becky said...

If you like rose-based scents you may want to try Bvlgari's Rose Essentialle. I have worn Bvlgari's Blu Notte for several years & love it. I purchased the Rose Essentialle as a gift for someone this past Christmas and it smelled lovely.

The Daily Connoisseur said...

Irene- Thank you for your recommendations! I have my eye out for the by Kilian line- I've heard so much about it. I do have the book Perfumes: The Guide by Turan and Sanchez- It is a very interesting read. Although I don't entirely agree with every review they write it is fun to read such bold opinions on scent :)

Kori- Thank you- you too!

Merveilleux- Believe it or not I haven't smelled L'air du Temps. Where have I been? I will do so soon...

Jane and Lance Hattat- Thanks for commenting. Chanel No. 5 is such a classic- you can't go wrong with it xo

NinaToilette- Thank you! I will check it out :)

Sheryl- Those both sound lovely. And thank you re: the YouTube video! I'm glad you enjoyed it. I have some fun ones coming up xo

Hostess- Thank you! The tea post will be a video that I'll post tomorrow. In it there will also be a rare glance at Mr. Connoisseur :)

Becky- It's funny you mentioned that. I have tried Bvlgari Rose Essentielle and planned on writing about it in the next perfume post. You seem to know me because I LOVED it. LOVED. I will give you a spoiler alert and tell you it is a major contender. Thanks for thinking of it xo

Beautiful Things said...

I've recently found your blog and I think I've read every post you've written about three times! I love your (classy) attitude towards life. xx

Lisa D. said...

Props to you for being able to describe all those perfumes so eloquently! I tried to describe a perfume once or twice and failed miserably. I had to look it up online and cheat off someone else's description. =) I'll definitely be sniffing some of these next time I'm in the mall. Can't wait to see what you sample next...

~Lisa

Pug1 said...

Just back from watching your u-tube, luv it! I left my first comment too! 77pug!
The Tom Ford Black Orchid, sounds tempting! It does sound mysterious!
Oh right! I'll be having some crupets and tea the day of the wedding too? What do you think should we indulge and have some wedding cake too??? xo CHEERS! Michele

Michael Rivers said...

I always say I'm going to change my cologne, but I always end up with Gio Armani. But I love it so much! Nothing else seems to smell "right."

lady jicky said...

If you seek a rose then you should have a sniff at Guerlain's Nahema and Malle's Une Rose!

Bea said...

Dear Jennifer,
I'm a long time lurker, first time commenter. I found you on Google and just loved all your posts about the French life! I am thrilled that The Daily Connoisseur keeps evolving and that you now have your own You Tube channel.

I just watched the "What to wear to the theater" clip and loved it, so many great ideas!
I would love to know how you style your hair to get those fabulous movie star waves. Would love to se a tutorial or just a post about your secret tricks!

Bea said...

Dear Jennifer,
I'm a long time lurker, first time commenter. I found you on Google and just loved all your posts about the French life! I am thrilled that The Daily Connoisseur keeps evolving and that you now have your own You Tube channel.

I just watched the "What to wear to the theater" clip and loved it, so many great ideas!
I would love to know how you style your hair to get those fabulous movie star waves. Would love to se a tutorial or just a post about your secret tricks!

The Daily Connoisseur said...

Thanks again for all of your comments! Michele did you have your wedding cake? I know I did! :)

And Bea- thank you for your kind comment. I'm so happy the YouTube channel is being so well received. Thanks for your request- I will do a future post or video on hair... xo

 
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