Éclat de Rose

Tester strip of Versace bottle, spray sample and desiccated rose.

Opens with dry salty roses that are polite, but not shy. Sweet water seeps in after a half hour, with a cool wet/dry ambroxan musk, and some dusty pink incense smoke rises six inches from the skin all evening.
Lasts overnight on cotton, and leans to the floral end of unisex.

I like it.
A smart “no-nonsense” professor vibe, and a nice change from the lush, fleshy petal fruit preserves everywhere.
(Sadly, at this price our prof needs tenure at an Ivy League school.)

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This celebration of Joni is my mood today–

Song in D Minor

Margot Elena’s packaging is hard not to fall for–Victwardian collage with gold details and raised crests on the bottles–this one features a domed birdcage and sheet music.

TokyoMilk No. 13 opens with big white flowers, in a packed hot church kind of way–and even gets a bit sweaty a few minutes in.
The gardenia takes up a lot of elbow room, then slowly settles to a foot off the body with sticky amber that smells like the soap in the bathroom of a mortuary.

Lasts through the burial and the wake, and haunts your clothes for a week after.

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Sky–the super-group that you’ve never heard of–included the classical guitarist John Williams, the bassist Herbie Flowers and percussionist Tristan Fry, (who both did session work with everyone from the Beatles to Lou Reed to Elton John.)
Bach’s Toccata and Fugue is easily the most famous song in D minor ever.

Dodo

Dodo illustration from Leopold Fitzinger’s 1864 Picture Atlas of birds, and a Zoologist card (with a much more dapper dodo) and sample spray.

Did the dodo go extinct because they actually smelled like this? Recent studies of their oversized beaks have suggested they had an acute sense of smell–were they so offended by their own species, they refused to mate?

Zoologist’s Dodo smells like screeching black currant cat pee, cheap body spray over unwashed teenager, and fresh basil.
For way too long.

Eventually settles to fruit salad with herb dressing tinged with feather musk–but unlike Snowy Owl, it’s not cute downy fluff, it’s molting fowl.

Fairly permanent on cotton.

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I like this dodo sound.

Desert Blush

Sample vial and promo with blonde wearing a dred-wig and pink dress in a grassy field with a cloudy mauve sky.

The ad copy says “warm sophisticated floral” but all I get is sandalwood and cedar musk that turn dry and dusty, like old leather.
Where have all the flowers gone?

Good for aging cowboys and folk singers, I suppose.

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This song has been translated into thirty languages, and got Pete Seeger inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame.

Snowcake

Unicorn squeaky duck, and a full, black capped LUSH bottle. My most regretted blind-buy yet. (The fragrance, not the uni-duck.)

Ugh. No.
I hurked in my mouth.
My cat ran from the room with his ears back.

An explosion of rotting bananas and decomposing rubber bath toys that settles to moldy marzipan after five wretched hours. (I was so astonished at how vile it was, I had to see how it played out, the way one sits through a bad movie.)

The guy came home and said, “Huh. Not bad,” and now I’m questioning all my relationship assumptions.

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Sorry, Ernie, Little Richard did it best.

Everything & Nothing

Black TokyoMilk Dark bottle with white feather motif, and a few lost black boa feathers to make my photo pretty.

Sugary orange gummy candy on top, cheeky and loud, that projects for 2 hours at arms length before slowly drifting down to floral oak-y tea leaves, left to stew in the bottom of the pot. The finish is quite nice, smoky and mysterious, and long lasting on fabric.

Also, this one matures well in the bottle.
I’ve an older rollerball as well–five years at least, the juice has turned dark and thick–that opens with a whiff of boozy plum wine before hitting the Brach’s Orange Slices, and has a slightly richer dry-down. I like both equally.

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Love this sweet and mysterious song from one of my favorite duos.

Amazon Lily

Sample card with botanical drawing of a white lily, spray vial and other Nest mini bottles.

The first spray is a sanitizing citrus that fades to weird artificial fantasy flowers–they feel a bit Tim Burton-ish, like they might eat your brains with slurping noises.
The dry drown is very cool, a woodsy musk that does a chilly freshwater slow dive that lasts for hours and hours.

Masculine, in a modern knight errant on a trippy quest way, but a Lady-of-the-Lake could pull it off, too.

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Tim Burton directed this cute video for the Killers.

Lampblack

Lampblack bottle test strip and decant vial, and a grapefruit.

This smells like a flirtation at the race track on a sunny day–with a tumbler full of Gin & Juice on the side.

Delightfully bitter citrus, and ebony black oily resins–new tires and gear oil and leather and asphalt, all inky surfaces that get a touch of sweetness as they heat up–that stay close to the skin for the afternoon.

It’s weird but fun, and I really like the dichotomy of it.
Minerals gone organic and wild and dark, but bright and warm at the same time, and strangely inviting.

Leans masculine, but I’d wear it on high heel boot days–definitely on the Want-a-Full-Bottle list, and now I’m curious about the rest of the line.

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One part Beefeater’s gin, three parts Ruby Red grapefruit juice. Pour over good ice and garnish with lime.

Ghost Deep Night

Purple moon shaped bottle casting plum colored shadows.

Opens with burnt peaches, vague flowers and a haunting hangover with sour lemon breath.
The vanilla alka-seltzer in the middle helps, but the headache doesn’t go away until the dry down–a woody musk that sticks to the clothes like party confetti and bad aftershave–fades too.

Recommended to bottle collectors. (Leave it closed.)

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This ghostly song is sweeter and much less ghoulish.

Orchidea

Tiny Borsari bottle with green ribbon and odd graphic label, and a green artificial orchid.

The scent we tend to think of as Orchid is usually a synthetic fantasy accord inspired by the Cattleya varieties, a delicate sweet vanilla floral, with hints of spice. (My sister-in-law grows very pretty varieties, but I get no smell from them at all.)

Borsari 1870’s soliflore interpretation from their library set opens green with wet white lily flowers on top, and sweet cardamom notes in the middle that slowly fade to a nice, effervescent cream soda on the skin.

I compared it with Tom Ford’s Orchids–Black, Velvet and Soleil–and other than a sense of fancy florals, this one doesn’t seem to match up with those three anywhere.

So perhaps an orchid’s beauty is in the nose of the designer?
This one doesn’t do much for me, but TF’s don’t either, much.

(Also, I have no idea what the art on that label is supposed to be. An abstract veiled face? A contorting cow?)

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I’m really enjoying lullaby rock lately.