When good hormones go bad. My quest to smell like a man!

Posted by Lipglossiping On November - 18 - 2013

As you may have guessed from the title, I’m totally blaming the pregnancy hormones for this one.  Whether or not they are actually culpable remains to be seen but it feels slightly less shameful to rest the responsibility upon my ever-increasing levels of hormonal angst.

Some women eat coal, crave the taste of rubber and leather… me?  Well, I just want to smell like all of those things instead.  You can keep your girly florals, sweet fruits, and vomit-worthy vanillas… give me all of the MAN SCENTS.

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Were my pockets big enough, I’d carry the above candles around with me 24/7, pausing regularly for a sniff before continuing on my way.  My Jonathan Ward Woodstock candle, which I picked up whilst scouring the shelves at T.K. Maxx is the least masculine of the trio and perfect for the season, reminding me of a dampened but very-much-alive forest floor… woody and aromatic.

My Mum picked up the Rigaud Cuir de Kyara candle for me after spotting it nestled on a tabletop at her local Emmaus in France.  She said that the smell of pure, unadulterated leather “nearly knocked her head off” and thus, knew instantly that I would fall in love with it.  She was right.  It’s a blinder and I’m now obsessed with finding other candles from this Parisian brand.

Finally, and thanks to a Zuneta/Amazon bargain, I’m pleased to finally be able to add this Malin + Goetz Vetiver candle to my collection!  I haven’t been able to walk past the display of M+G candles in Liberty for ages without stopping to sniff this one in all its earthy, woody and downright sexy glory.

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But my obsession with man-scent doesn’t just stop at candles.  Oh no!  It gets far more serious…

I bought L’Artisan Parfumeur’s Tea for Two during their Summer sale a couple of years ago and it was love at first sniff but recently, I just can’t get enough of it and have upgraded to a massive 100ml bottle in order to get my fix.  The perfect blend of smoky embers, honeyed tobacco and warming ginger to keep all thoughts of frostiness at bay this Winter.

Ahhh, Molton Brown… I remember when I first came across your distinctively delicious Re-Charge Black Pepper scent (now called black peppercorn) a few years ago whilst staying at a hotel in Basel.  To this day, I kick myself for being good and not stealing all the hotel toiletries, it just felt too naughty to take the ones that I hadn’t actually opened to use during my stay!  Instead, I scoop up other people’s spoils on eBay and long for the candle version!

My final fragrant craving is one that Mr. L is less than impressed with.  He can cope with sharing most of his scents with me, infact… many times, we purchase a fragrance under the certain knowledge that we’re doing so in order to share the bottle (it makes a £70 splurge so much more palatable split two ways).  My desires to wear his smells-just-like-a-freshly-wet-shaved-man Floris Santal*, however, are falling on deaf ears.  I’ve been allowed a quick spritz, twice.  Only twice.  I actually think that might constitute domestic abuse.

Are there any “boy” scents that drive you wild?  And, question is… are you wild enough to wear them?

* press sample


L’Artisan Parfumeur La Chasse Aux Papillons

Posted by Lipglossiping On February - 25 - 2012

A few weeks ago I treated myself to a new L’Artisan Parfumeur fragrance and I was completely torn between the fruity Mure et Musc and the floaty La Chasse Aux Papillons.  In the end, it came down to longevity… I had a sample of the Mure et Musc from my Discovery Coffret and although it smelled divine, it disappeared from my skin after a very short 40 or so minutes.  La Chasse Aux Papillons it was!

La Chasse Aux Papillons is a beautiful Spring fragrance, almost the antithesis to everything I usually love in a perfume.  I generally favour warmth, spice, leather… everything that’s dark and best reserved for Wintery days or cool evenings.  This is light, floaty and a little bit ethereal.  It opens with a gentle fan of tuberose and orange blossom, a combination that evokes the kind of feelings that I associate with a beautifully, sunny day.  It’s a little bit soapy in a freshly laundered way but this element is as light on the nose as the tuberose.  My one disappointment with this beautiful fragrance is that longevity-wise, I don’t get much more than a couple of hours wear from it.

For me, there’s nothing overtly sexy about La Chasse Aux Papillons, it breathes too much light and playfulness for that, it makes me want to step into a layered chiffon skirt and feel a warm breeze against my bare skin.  Realistically, it’s more of a casual jeans and white tee kinda fragrance, only fashion bloggers and models wear chiffon skirts right?  Anyway, it fills me with hope of warm days and white flowers, and frankly, that’s no bad thing.

L’Artisan Parfumeur La Chasse Aux Papillons is available to buy instore and online at Harrods, priced at £78 for 100ml EdT

L’Artisan Parfumeur Discovery Coffret for Her

Posted by Lipglossiping On January - 17 - 2012

I recently took advantage of the L’Artisan Parfumeur January sales and picked up a couple of items to expand my collection. The first thing to land in my basket was a 100ml bottle of Tea for Two, my favourite fragrance. I’m halfway through my last bottle and waging a constant battle with my husband about his (over)use of my beloved. I watch him apply it, trying to keep calm, share nicely and not react but within seconds I’ve launched myself across the room, snatching it from his hands, screaming TOO MUCH, YOU ARE USING TOO MUCH. Then I thrust a bottle of Old Spice at him and slink away to find a new hiding place for MY precious.

Where was I?

Oh yes, this…

The coffret contains a selection of L’Artisan Pafumeur‘s best-selling scents that lean toward the female market (you can also get a male version).  Priced at £17, the set includes: Mûre et Musc Extrême, La Chasse aux Papillons Extrême, Premier Figuier Extrême, L’Eau d’Ambre Extrême and Traversée du Bosphore.  I’ve only opened Premier Figuier Extrême so far, and have already created a bit of a lemming for myself thanks to notes that include: fig leaves, almond milk, and sandalwood.

I’m not a massive fan of the way these 5ml mini-vials open… with a peel back lid not unlike a bottle of milk, there’s no way to reseal the tiny bottles, frustrating – and with a 2 year old on the rampage, asking for trouble.

Overall, for 25ml of top quality fragrance, £17 is a very good price to pay.  If you’re wanting to dip your toes in the world of ‘posh’ perfume, this would be a great place to begin.  L’Artisan’s £5 shipping charge is prohibitive and also pretty slow for the price – it took nearly two weeks for my order to arrive.  But one sniff of Tea for Two, and I’ve forgiven them.

L’Artisan Parfumeur Discovery Coffret for Her is priced at £17 and currently available in the Sale section of their website.  Probably not for too much longer.

Winter Warmers: The ultimate Cold Weather Fragrances!

Posted by Lipglossiping On November - 23 - 2011

If the Met Office is to be believed, we’re ‘in for it’ (technical description) this Winter, I hope so anyway… I’ve just bought some bargain sledges in anticipation of blizzard-y snow and icicle snots.

There are thankfully a billion things to make up for the fact that we’ll only achieve around 6 hours of sunshine from now until February — Pringles, Quality Streets, and Christmas episodes of Eastenders would feature heavily on my list, but another thing that melts my frozen heart are the Winter fragrances that I can splash on with abandon.

Here are my TOP FIVE Winter Perfumes to ward off the big chill…

1. L’Artisan Parfumeur: Tea for Two EdT (£78.00)

Black tea, honey and an aromatic smokiness that encourages deep, long sniffs with your nose buried in your sleeve.  Most of my perfumes are unisex because I’m developing expensive tastes and I find it much easier to justify my purchases when I remind Mr. L that we can *both* use them.  It’s not true of course, as I hide them behind my scarves in my wardrobe.

Tea for Two also contains a ginger note which doesn’t present itself very well on my skin.  I consider Tea for Two to be a less-sweet, slightly less boozy version of Tom Ford’s Tobacco Vanille.  Longevity is grand on this one but it wears close to my skin – all the better for sniffing yourself with.

2. La Prairie: Life Threads Gold EdP (£74.00 – currently £59.95 at Cheap Smells) *

La Prairie’s Life Threads Gold is a force to be reckoned with thanks to its retro leanings and powerful floriental heart.  If you like people to smell you before they see you, this one could have your name written all over it.  Notes include (are you ready?): Plum, clove, tangerine, pepper, cinnamon, corriander, rose, lily of the valley, ylang ylang, vanilla, musk, golden myrrh and precious woods.

It’s as unapologetic as it is striking – go big or go home.  Perfect for the cold weather.

I implore you to go sniff this one out – as a girly/womanly type fragrance, it’s hard to beat.  I cut my teeth on Hypnotic Poison and it harks back to all I loved about that fragrance, but this one feels like it’s for grown ups.

3. Fendi: Fan di Fendi EdP (£39.50) *

The majority of my Winter fragrant love affairs evoke a smoke, leather and amber accord that carries me away to warmer, more exotic climes.  Fan di Fendi is a kitten by comparison, rendering it very work-appropriate whilst still containing a hint to my usual leanings.

The leather base is apparent though not rough-and-ready, as if struggling to make up its mind between dominatrix and classy handbag lady.  I detect a twist of the Mediterannean thanks to a freshness from some fruity notes which include tangerine.  Silage is decent, particularly when those initial top fruity/floral notes present but it quickly calms down into a calmer experience.

4. Bottega Veneta: Bottega Veneta EdP (£42.00) *

Elegance and sophistication with a clean, smooth leather that evokes the joy of sniffing luxury leather accessories.  And so it should, coming from Bottega Veneta — purveyors of luxury handbags.  A quiet soul of a scent, work appropriate without losing the edge that sets it apart from the competition.

The leather is gentle, almost suede-like with an initial hit of citrus to remind you of its Italian heart.  It’s most similar to the Fendi but with an altogether more sophisticated personality.  It doesn’t try hard, it doesn’t have to — it’s like that girl you know who manages to ooze grace without even knowing it.

5. Parfums d’Empire: Ambre Russe (£84.50)

Perhaps the ultimate in decadence, a king of a fragrance with a boozy, amber accord that transcends all earthly dimensions.  A little goes a long way and will leave those in your company searching the room for the source of this scent that offers up a kindly lesson in “how the hell to smell amazing”.

You can’t read anything about this scent without the mentions of Tsarist Russia and that’s because you can’t wear this scent without being transported to one of those onion-domed churches, incense burning while the blizzard roars outside.  Throw in a booziness that would make vodka-loving Russians (stereotype much?) blush and you’re getting close to the experience that wearing this powerhouse offers.

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What are your favourite scents to get you through the cold Winter ahead?

* press samples

 

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