Mini-Review Roundup June 20, 2018

Here’s today’s collection of reviews of some new-ish mainstream fragrances. (I dunno, is Guerlain mainstream? The only Guerlain you can buy in a department store around here is Shalimar. On the other hand, none of the department stores in my area would carry Prada or Tiffany either.)

Mon Guerlain – This was a freebie tossed in by the eBay seller because she was out of one of the carded samples I had bid on. I wouldn’t have chosen it on my own (as you might remember, I am truly not much of a Guerlie-girl). In any case, without checking the notes, I threw the sample in my gym bag and spritzed a bit on after my shower. Within three minutes I was sporting a massive lavender hangover headache.

Which is pretty much a deal-killer for me. I shriek NO LAVENDER!!! the way Faye Dunaway shrieked NO WIRE HANGERS!!! as Joan Crawford in “Mommie Dearest.”

And I can barely tell you anything else in there except the flat powdery vanilla (also a note I dislike) and that weird powdery-chalky baby-aspirin orange thing (double-hate), because I scrubbed. Bleargh. I’m sure there are people who love this thing, but the only way I would have hated it more would be if they crammed it full of fig leaf, too.

Tiffany & Co. – I liked the first Tiffany fragrance. It was a 1987 release, and it smelled like an 80’s release: a jam-packed, rich floral, the opposite of “light.” This one was getting some decent reviews so I thought I’d give it a shot. The first sniff was not promising: some screechy Coco-Mademoiselle-type patchouli, a high-pitched citrus, plus the clean and quiet iris-musk familiar to us from Prada Infusion d’Iris, which should surprise no one because Daniela Andrier did the Prada as well. Within a few moments, though, it settled down into a very pleasant blackcurrant-peach-rose floral not all that far from my beloved Ines de la Fressange. Too bad the drydown isn’t nearly as good, but I swear I think there’s real sandalwood in the Fressange. This one eventually subsides into a lighter, sweeter Coco-Mademoiselle-ish drydown, which is still fairly pleasant. I give this one a B-minus because it could have been much worse, and because it is such a no-brainer pleasant thing. The drydown, which is my favorite part, lasts several hours on me and stays pleasant, reminding me just a tad — in feel, not smell — of another no-brainer just-pretty that I love, Carven Le Parfum. I won’t buy this, but I won’t mind smelling it on someone else.

Prada Infusion Amande –  This smells like they started with Infusion d’Iris and added a clean, sweet heliotrope. It’s soft, powdery, not quite sweet. Listed notes are almond, heliotrope, tonka bean, musk, and anise, and I smell all of those plus a dry satiny iris, and just mayyyybe a bit of orange blossom. It’s fairly linear in my experience. However, it’s very nice stuff, and for an almond/heliotrope scent, seems to avoid all Play-doh references, which is unusual and refreshing. I don’t need it, but I enjoyed it.

 

Have you smelled anything mainstream-ish lately that’s good? Tell us about it!

 

 

 

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4 thoughts on “Mini-Review Roundup June 20, 2018”

  1. I join you in the NO LAVENDER! screaming. I can’t abide it, and sadly, people who know I like perfume inevitably gift me with something lavender. I know, FWP.

    I haven’t tried anything mainstream in quite a while; the department stores around here only carry the mainstream perfumes that are clearly intended for the teens and twenties demographic (i.e. too sweeeeeet for me). Note to department stores: that demographic is not shopping your store; they’re all at Sephora/Ulta.

    Wow, I do sound cranky, don’t I? I blame it on the weather. 😉

    1. Well, we’re agreed: let’s not talk about lavender then. And oh, don’t mention the weather!! It’s not all that HOT today but it is about 70% humidity, so you walk outside and immediately drip sweat. Ugh. This is Not Good for Perimenopausal Women and other living creatures. I think I am perma-cranky.

      The only department store close to me that carries perfume is Belk, about 20 miles away, and they’re pretty basic: Lauder, Clinique, the usual Chanels (No. 5, Chance, Coco Mlle, Allure, and the l’Eau, but not even Eau Premiere), and a smattering of designer frags but nothing interesting.

  2. I also tried a sample of Mon Guerlain, and while it wasn’t completely unwearable, it did feel absolutely generic to me. It reminded me of every other pinkish mainstream scent I’ve tried (LVEB, CM, etc., etc.) and the cloud of scent that hangs over every perfume department. And I must add that I get no lavender in MG, at least no lavender that I can recognize, and I was certainly hoping for some since I love the smell of lavender, in my garden, dried in sachets, or as essential oil. Perhaps the lavender in Mon Guerlain is drenched in so much vanilla/maltol/patchouli that I can’t find it?

    I don’t know if it counts as a mainstream perfume, but this perimenopausal woman in the heat has been enjoying Fresh Life, a citrus scent that was given to me by my older DD, who is resolutely anti-perfume. I was delighted that she overcame her bias and tested perfumes for me. It’s very refreshing, fairly long lasting, and not heavy with calone.

    1. Oh, how sweet of your daughter to find something scented for you when she doesn’t enjoy perfume! That’s awesome.

      I think I may be super-sensitive to lavender — I don’t even enjoy it growing in the ground, much less in perfume or essential oil. It gives me horrible headaches, so I’m probably picking it up in smaller percentages than many people might notice. When I’ve gone to get a massage I’ve had to ask for no lavender in the room because it bothers me so much.

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