I’ve thought and thought about what to post here about this topic. I think what I’m going with is (1) a short discussion of my interest in this subject, (2) a short list of what I like best, and (3) a couple links where you can find samples to buy in case you decide you want to start down this (possibly ridiculous) road.
I’m a little nutty about perfume. I’ve always loved it. I don’t love huge, billowing clouds of it. Actually, that makes me sick. But I do love smells. I love when other people wear perfume (if they are not walking in a huge, billowing cloud–see above). I love to wear perfume.
However, as it turns out, if I’m going to have something that close and that persistent, it has to be just right. Just right proved to be a little difficult for me to find, and thus began my perfume sampling career. It’s the kind of career that causes me to spend money and make no money whatsoever. Maybe the opposite of a career, then. A reerac.
Anyway, I have been sampling for years and have smelled many, many wonderful things. Some of them I wanted to be just right, and I tried for a while, but they were not. Others of them, well, I knew immediately that they weren’t for me, but would be wonderful on someone else. It’s been fun.
What I came up with for myself are the following scents, and they seem to be more classic scents, and older (with the exception of the Chanel). I didn’t plan it that way, but I guess they’ve stood the test of time for a reason. I’m going to warn you that I’m not one of those super perfume reviewer people who can pick scents apart really well, but I did my best to describe what these smell like to me:
Fracas, by Robert Piguet This fragrance is either loved or hated, it seems. I love it. I especially love it in humid springtime. It is my husband’s absolute favorite. On me, it smells beachy, oddly enough. Flowery, yes, but also fruity and, well, I don’t know what makes the beachy smell, but it’s nice. It wears as a quiet scent on me and I don’t think people really smell it unless they get very close.
Jicky, by Guerlain I linked to the pure parfum, but I wear the EDT, and I love it and its hilarious, bombastic bottle. I think it’s kind of a vanilla-y, incense-y kind of smell, and I think this might be the perfume that feels the most natural for me to wear any time, but I think it’s especially nice when the summer is dying and the afternoons are warm but evenings are chilly.
L’Heure Bleue, by Guerlain This is such a pretty, pretty smell. I think it’s also kind of incense-y, but with more flowers.
Chanel No. 19 This is the one on the list I’ve been wearing longest. I discovered it when I was 15 or 16, and my brother bought me my first bottle. I’ve been wearing it on and off ever since. I wear the EDT. I tried the pure parfum, but it was missing something that I love about the EDT, so EDT it is. It’s green and a little powdery, but eventually it dries to wonderful flowers and leather. I think it is one of those scents that if I am dressed formally and in doubt what to wear, I can spray it on and always feel perfect. And maybe I don’t dress formally very often anymore, but this fragrance still gets worn because it’s fresh and fairly light.
Other fragrances of notable mention are: Coco Chanel–the pure parfum only, and L’Artisan’s (NOW DISCONTINUED WHYYYYY) Tea for Two. Delicious, spicy-type smells. As a matter of fact, in the way of spicy-woody fragrances there are such wonderful things to smell and I want to start listing them, but I suppose I’ll stick to those two, and maybe only add
Bois 1920 oops! I meant to say Frapin 1270 (although I do recall Bois 1920 being very nice, also) and Chanel Bois des Iles (in pure parfum, which sample was given to me by a kind woman to whom I will be forever grateful), and stop there.
Okay! So! If you want to try some perfumes that you can’t find in the department store, or if you want a little sample vial of something and can’t bring yourself to ask at the shop, here are a couple links, which are my favorite places to buy samples:
luckyscent.com has a nice selection of niche fragrances, and you can buy sample vials of many of them. I buy lots of my samples here.
The Perfumed Court has so, so very many things, and you can get a tiny vial or a larger decant of a fragrance.
Do you love perfume? Do you stick more to classics or newer scents, and did you make that decision purposefully, or did it just happen that way?