Thursday, 27 October 2016

Live in Love by Oscar de la Renta

It's Perfume Thursday and this week we have been wearing Live in Love by Oscar de la Renta.

With the name of ‘Live in Love’ we expected this perfume to be ramped up with flowers, deep heavy hedonistic florals.

Hands up, I admit we were wrong!

Florals there are - an abundance of them (jasmine, rose, lily of the valley, hyacinth and orchid) - but it is freshly cut flower stems (courtesy of the galbanum) that gives this perfume it’s crisp green kick.

The woody dry down (cedar and sandalwood with amber and musk) give this scent a forest glade style finish leaving me with a familiar scent of damp florist shops floating around my olfactory senses.

I feel slightly cheated since bergamot is our smell of the week and I chose the perfume on the back of that (I am a huge fan of bergamot), but the green bracken-like galbanum prevents bergamot from getting a look in. No fleeting hint or teasing waft of bergamot for me today.

Do I like the perfume? Hmmmmm, I’m not sure. It’s pleasant but not breath-takingly beautiful. It’s agreeable but not head-turningly stunning. It’s wearable but not loud-gaspingly fabulous.

And I’m not sulking about the non-appearance of the bergamot, I promise!

Thursday, 20 October 2016

Fantome de Maules by Stora Skuggen

As one of the PF team was heading our for an evening this week she gave her wrists a quick spritz of Fantome de Maules and was the recipient of a lovely compliment about her choice of fragrance. Upon further discussion it seems this fragrance set off some lovely olfactory memories in her conversation partner of Passion by Elizabeth Taylor.  We had a look to see if there were some aromas common to both fragrances and whilst there were, there were many more that were different.  We still find it fascinating that even one or two elements of a perfume can trigger thoughts and feelings and never fail to be amazed by the clarity of thought those aromas can spark.

This weeks perfume, Fantome de Maules, is based on a mythical being who lives in the forest, quietly and without wanting to be noticed,but fleeting glimpses are caught now and again of the human like shape enjoying the flora and fauna of the beautiful surroundings.

With top notes of bergamot, lemon, galbanum and green leaves first impressions are of fresh green notes with hints of floral notes to come.  As the fragrance settles the floral notes certainly do emerge with powdery edges as if the petals of the flowers are turning to dust in in your fingers.  Sweetness dances around the floral notes courtesy of tonka bean and labdanum, however with a number of woody notes included in the composition such as sandalwood, cedar, cashmeran and iso e super (our aroma of the week) we were expecting something a bit more robust.    As the floral notes pass the perfume seems to fade from our wrists rather than burst into gorgeous woodiness.

So overall we do like this and love the story that goes with it..... had we not known the ingredients we would have perhaps wanted the fragrance to last a little longer, but maybe iso e super is still lurking in the background, working it's mythical magic like the Fantome....

Thursday, 13 October 2016

Behind the Rain by Paul Schutze

The description of this perfume paints a picture of a remote island after a violent rainstorm, as the sun emerges and the warmth of its rays lands on foliage and the ground beneath the aromas created are captured in a bottle.

Our first impressions are of wet earth mixing with the scent of the blossom of the trees that have been knocked to the ground by the heavy raindrops.  Vetiver is very evident right at the beginning but without drowning out the more delicate elements of grapefruit and linden blossom (our aroma of the week).  Spicy notes of black pepper and olibanum gradually add a warmth as it successfully manages to be fresh and smoky at the same time.  Other notes of pine and mastic/lentisque are thankfully less evident as we feared this would add the 'toilet cleaner' note.... not a favourite aroma of ours in perfumes!

From the title we expected this to be a very light and aquatic fragrance but we are happy to report that it is much more complex and delightful, and after a couple of hours it is happily still very evident.

Definitely a keeper in our opinion, with the whole team voting overwhelmingly that they would wear it.  It might just have to fall into my handbag for the weekend......    

Thursday, 6 October 2016

Spice Bazaar by Nishane

Last week we chose cumin as our aroma of the week and to match, we chose Spice Bazaar by Nishane as our perfume of the week.

It's a perfume that has confused us all.  Do we like it, don't we like it - we just don't know.  We don't normally dither at all when it comes to thumbs up/thumbs down decision on a perfume but Spice Bazaar waivers between the two.

The opening is definitely spicy and offers us notes of ginger, cinnamon, cumin, pepper and saffron. The citrus is pretty much knocked from it's no. 1 'notice me' spot by the spices.....shy citrus?  Who'd have thought it!

From a feisty spicy opening the perfume pretty much remains as is.  Notes of rosemary and juniper add to the freshness keeping the perfume lively.  There are notes of cedar and vanilla to round the perfume off but to be honest, the perfume fades before we can really get to grips with these aromas.

A second squirt after two hours so that we can compare 'newly sprayed' with 'sprayed a while ago' proves to us that the perfume hasn't shifted, the backs of my hands are identical.

It is fresh and spicy, but that's it.  Somehow it feels flat and safe rather than bold and alluring.  I don't believe there are many spicy perfumes that I'd consider flat and safe, but Nishane, Spice Bazaar has ticked that box.

I'd happily wear it - but I think I'd layer it with a dollop of vetiver or patchouli or black musk to let it round off in the triumphant fashion I think it deserves.

Thursday, 22 September 2016

Dark Saphir by Agonist

This week we have been enjoying wearing Dark Saphir by Agonist.

I was especially wary at first since it contains oud, our perfume of the week.  Why wary?  Well I often find oud smelling similar to elastoplast with a farmyard dung element and I can't say that it is something I especially enjoy.

However, I'm more than pleased to report back that Dark Saphir is as far from farmyard as it possibly could be.  Instead we are presented with something dark, beautiful, sophisticated and smoky.

There’s a hint of spice, a hint of wet leaves, a hint of tall elegant woman walking through Manhattan on a winter’s day and a hint of dark, soft velvet cushions in front of a crackling log fire.

Dark, complex, rich, sultry, lingering and delicious.  This one got a big thumbs up from everyone in the office.

Thursday, 15 September 2016

Botanical Essence No.1 by Liz Earle

This week the office has been smelling fresh and clean and very citrussy since lemon is our chosen aroma of the week.

The perfume we chose to match the aroma is Liz Earle's Botanical Essence No.1

We can tick the 'does it smell of lemons?' box quite happily - the first spritz is full of uplifting lemon offering a lively and energising burst.

But do we tick any other boxes? Sadly, on this occasion we don't.

The perfume is fine, but fine doesn't quite stir our olfactory senses into a frenzy. The perfume is safe, but we were hoping for something a little more feisty. The perfume is perfectly wearable, but we felt it had more wallflower appeal than something a little more daring and bold.

One of our staff members says it reminded him of when his Mum had just cleaned the bathroom....and sadly that is all we can focus on now.

Clean and fresh, innocuous and safe with hints of toilet duck. But we do like it, promise!

Thursday, 8 September 2016

Prada Candy by Prada

So, if you are a regular reader of our blog posts (and of course you all are!) you'll know that our perfume Thursday review features a fragrance which contains our chosen aroma of the week.  This week our chosen aroma is caramel, a deliciously sweet and mouth watering aroma which has been wafting around our heads at PFHQ for a few days.  As the days have gone by we were wondering if we would get to Thursday and find this week's fragrance a little (or a lot) on the sickly sweet side..... smelling caramel all day every day we can assure you our cravings for all things gooey had been well and truly satisfied!

So here we are at Thursday - we spray and we sniff....... and we like it.  Hoorah! It's not sickly sweet, more of a warm sweet and vivacious, not cloying or overpowering,  With other aromas such as vanilla and benzoin we are quite surprised at how un-sickly-sweet it is, if you could see the relief/happiness on our faces!

The aroma doesn't change much as it dries down, keeping the warm sweetness all the way through. In our opinion it's a simple fragrance - and a little simplicity is very welcome in today's chaotic world.