Tuesday Roundup: Fragrance mini-reviews, January 17, 2011

Onorio and Ruben

Sorry for the delay in posting – I had to give the orphan calf Sammy a bottle this morning, and then I had to go pick up a crucial resource for Bookworm’s science fair project (boy, is she gonna owe me!  I’m going to demand a clean room. And hugs).

Carolina Herrera – I ought to have liked this. You know me and my tuberose lust – I saved the sample for a year or so just so I could do a review for the Tuberose Series. And this is really gorgeous for the first ten minutes: a full-blown sunny oh-baby tuberose-jasmine combination, after which it goes soapy and sour for the next three hours. After three miserable test wearings, I have Officially Given Up on this one.

Bottega Veneta – I applaud the idea of a mainstream perfume, available in department stores, not smelling like candy or froot* or frooty candy or the doofiest, lowest-common-denominator mall juice. I applaud the idea of a pleasant, wearable leather scent for grown women. I further applaud the advertising campaign not showing naked women writhing in pseudo-sexual bliss, but focusing on a fully-dressed woman alone in a lovely landscape.

*I’ve begun using the term “froot” to refer to overly sweetened/artificially flavored fruit notes. As a kid, I was crazy about things like watermelon Bubblicious, Nerds, Runts (even the banana ones), and Jell-O, but I haven’t liked those things since I was about fifteen. If you’re going to put fruit in my perfume, let it smell like something I could buy at the produce stand, not from the candy rack at the Wal-Mart.

And BV is pretty nice, taken on its own merits. A floral/powdery/ladylike-leather scent, it’s very well-bred. All the same, I do not like it. It has that Tang-dust/baby-aspirin, back-of-the-throat raspy thing that I just hate (neroli? I dunno), and far far far too much (clean) patchouli. Gah. I was hoping this would be a take on Cuir de Lancome, and it’s far enough away that it annoys the pants off me.

Prada Candy – This one I was prepared to savage because I still hate the idea of grown women smelling like dessert, but I just can’t. It smells like, duh, candy, specifically caramel candy, which despite my dislike of frooty candy like Nerds, remains with me. Caramel sauce, caramel apples, chocolate-covered caramels? Yum. And Prada Candy is just as delicious, the rare gourmand that I enjoy. After a while, the caramel sort of wears off and you’re left with benzoin and vanilla, which is less edible but still nice. I suspect that my IQ drops about twenty points when I wear Candy. It makes me giggle.

It also caused me to revisit a sample of Hanae Mori Butterfly (swiped from my teenage daughter’s dresser), as an exploration of my toleration for gourmands. More on that to come.

Prada Infusion d’Iris – Despite its dismal two-star review in Perfumes: The Guide (“contains no discernible natural iris note, and feels rather like a gray, nondescript woody masculine”), I have rather liked Id’I for some time. It is a calming sort of fragrance, a pale celadon green smell, powdery and clean-musky, that feels like the embodiment of an unblotted copybook or a fresh page of the calendar. As ScentScelf points out here, it is nearly perfect as an accompaniment to a dentist appointment.

Badgley Mischka Couture – I haaaated the original one, which is all hot fruitchouli mess iffen you ask me, so I wasn’t expecting miracles with Couture. Donna at PST liked it (but then she liked the parfum of the original B Mischka, too). As it turns out, I really like the luscious, utterly ripe fruit in the top. Want to do fruit? This is the way – it’s very very fruity, but there’s no hint of “froot flavor” at all. Unfortunately, after the lovely fruit top, it fades to a barely-there white floral thingy backed by a quiet patchouli-caramel base. I don’t hate this, but I don’t like it either.

Roundup image is “Onorio and Ruben,” from charliellewellin at Flickr.  When The CEO was young, his father and uncle used to use horses to get up cattle.  They later found that – although it’s probably different out West – they actually had better success in getting the cattle to go where they wanted when they used a pickup and people walking.  Sometimes we use the John Deere Gator as well.

(Also, I have Font Fail… I have to figure out what the default font is for this theme and start using it on my laptop, which is where I tend to write posts.)

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16 thoughts on “Tuesday Roundup: Fragrance mini-reviews, January 17, 2011”

  1. Finally. 🙂
    I find BV perfectly fine and at the same time, I don’t think I’d ever wish to wear it.
    But I know many people who are very happy with the way it smells and enjoy wearing it.

    1. I too think BV smells good but it drives me batty because I don’t smell any leather in it at all, just squeaky clean sweet patchouli for daaaaays.

      1. The leather is pretty subtle compared to that clean patch – which strikes me as being somehow “high-pitched,” isn’t that weird?

        Oh, and the parfum of Juicy Couture is far superior to the edp, which is melon bubblegum all the way. I still don’t get much of a drydown, but the parfum is wearable where the edp is really, really just too Bubblicious. Full review coming.

  2. I just broke out my sample of Bottega Veneta after reading your review. I like it. It’s clean patchouli and leather, interesting, but bland in a way too. I’d wear it happily if someone gave it to me, but it reminds me too much of the inside of the department store to buy on my own.

    There’s a Juicy Couture parfum?

    1. There IS Juicy Couture parfum! Found mine at Wal-Mart for $9.50… on the rack with the Tabu and Navy and Paris Hilton minis. Looks soooo trashy – black plastic bottle, silver writing, pink top – but is surprisingly nice, if you like white florals. I feel certain that this version is the one that got 4 stars in P:TG, because there’s just NO WAY that the edp would have.

  3. When the picture at the top of this post came into view, I thought for a moment I had landed at the Pioneer Woman’s site!

    The last time I was in Nordstrom’s I sprayed BV on skin and tried Candy on a test strip. Liked the BV but not enough to even ask for a sample. Just kinda boring. I’ll be in Nordstrom’s tomorrow so will try Candy on skin. I could use a perfume giggle!

    1. (What’s the Pioneer Woman site?? Must check out.)

      I love a good giggle! Try Candy on skin… but you must love caramel.

  4. I went back to Bottega Veneta and Candy again and again – after each favorite review I read. And still no love. I appreciate them both and will keep samples in my “scent library” but I do not want to wear them.

    Prada d’Iris, on the other hand, I like. Like – as in own and wear. I’m not sure I’ll need to replenish my bottle once it’s gone but I while I have it I enjoy wearing it from time to time.

    1. I don’t wear Id’I much, but there are days it seems Just Right. Very peaceful. I have a mini that I poured into an atomizer because the bottle opening was so irritatingly small. I did that for Bookworm’s mini as well – she wears hers more than I wear mine, and I have a feeling that eventually mine will wind up in her room.

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