It’s easy to mistakenly believe that the only worthwhile judgements in life are those that are deliberated over with great consideration and care, but I believe there’s something to be said for an impulsive reaction. Snap judgements and the choices we make from them are a skill that takes us years to hone and develop, we should put a lot more trust and value in those instant decisions because you know what? Our guts often know what’s right for us before our brains have even had time to digest the information.
Take these new Perfumed Shea Butter Body Cream releases from L’Occitane…
I bet that subconsciously, you’d already know which tin would tempt you into a cheeky sniff before you’ve read the “flavour names” below.
But what I’d love to know is whether your quick-thinking proved to be correct. For me, I’d instinctively reach into the lush green tin, expecting a scent of freshness and a mouth-watering tang. Thankfully, I’d be right, the brand have got the styling spot on… it’s a trigger, and it’s just aswell they’re on the ball because psychologically, there’s nothing worse than when an obvious sight trigger lets you down!
The historic town of Grasse in the South-Eastern corner of France is widely considered as the world’s capital of perfumery. The area enjoys a climate ripe for growing and harvesting flowers and it’s reported that over twenty-seven tonnes of jasmine alone are harvested in Grasse annually! The town is also home to many of the world’s oldest perfumeries and most of the industries most famous “noses” have trained there at some point in their career.
L’Occitane have recently released a collection of fragrances that pay tribute to the area’s rich history of “scentsory” creation and the set* that I’m reviewing today offers a generous insight into each of the new offerings in 7.5ml form. You should note that this addition of miniatures is a limited release and according to the L’Occitane website, there are only a few left available to purchase.
Each fragrance is contained in individual, fully-resealable bottles. I mention this because I shall never purchase another L’Artisan Parfumeur set whose miniatures evaporate their ridiculous packaging within weeks. Take your time enjoying these… at £28 for a total of 30ml, you’re getting good value that will give you plenty of opportunity to discover your favourite(s).
The lady behind the collection, Karine Dubreuil, has created for L’Occitane before and is fully in-tune with the brand’s ethos and love for natural extracts.
I immediately recognised myself in this clear, pure style of authenticity associated with L’OCCITANE. This vow of sincerity is captured in their fragrances, which expresses the beauty of nature in all its transparency. – Karine Dubreuil
The collection plays around with the idea of capturing a pair of players in the fragrance world and weaving their simplicity into something a little more meaningful. Whether a chance encounter, or destined to be together… the ingredients are chosen and combined expertly under Karine’s care.
Jasmine & Bergamote
Bergamot discreetly lights up the scent and continues to retain a lingering presence. Contrasts blend with ambivalence as jasmine reveals all its facets. To convey this ambiguity, at least two types of jasmine would be needed: a jasmine from Grasse and a jasmine from Egypt. The balance fluctuates between petals and leaves, freshness and sensuality, day and night.
Top notes: mandarin orange, BERGAMOT
Heart notes: JASMINE, lemon leaves
Base notes: sandalwood, cedar
Magnolia & Mure
Between flower and fruit, the magnolia essence provides the prelude to wild and slightly musky blackberry notes. Present throughout the fragrance, blackberry gives a tenderness to the woody structure. Its velvety seeds soften the solemnity of patchouli. Over time, the fragrance asserts its chypre character.
Top notes: bergamot, BLACKBERRY
Heart notes: MAGNOLIA, rose
Base notes: patchouli, moss
Vanille & Narcisse
Discreet at first, the scent of narcissus swells to reveal a bouquet of white flowers and spicy heart accords. Finally, rich and radiant vanilla borrows the wilder, untamed notes of narcissus that give it spirit.
Top notes: blackcurrant, bergamot
Heart notes: NARCISSUS, gardenia
Base notes: VANILLA, tonka bean
Thé Vert & Bigarade
This great classic from L’OCCITANE joins La Collection de Grasse. Refreshing, essential and aimed at both men and women, it has a thirst-quenching effect from the very first contact, when sparkling citrus notes burst forth in an accord of sweet and bitter orange. Hints of green tea, yerba mate and hay give a reassuring touch before drying down into an aromatic trail.
Top notes: orange, BITTER ORANGE
Heart notes: GREEN TEA, yerba mate
Base notes: cedar, thyme, musk
From the collection, Thé Vert & Bigarade is my pick of the bunch. An uplifting citrus without any of the prickliness that one might usually associate with the genre. It’s both refreshing and warming with a hint of the oriental that softens the edges of the bitter orange and evokes a feeling of comfort and well-being. In all honesty, there’s not an awful lot more to it than that… there’s no great complexity or layer upon layer of twists and turns to excite your senses. Thé Vert & Bigarade simply displays a beautiful pairing of notes that were clearly meant to be together.
There’s a fantastic interview with the perfumer Karine Dubreuil which I’ve embedded below, it explains more about the inspiration behind the collection and gives a little insight into the region and it’s rich wealth of fragrant history.
The Petit Grasse Fragrance Collection is available to buy instore and online at uk.loccitane.com, priced at £28 for the boxed selection (3oml total)
“I have found men who didn’t know how to kiss. I’ve always found time to teach them.” – Mae West
Whatever you forget to do this morning, don’t forget to brush your teeth. Twice.
You see, today is National Kissing Day. The one day of the year where I think it’s practically legal to demand kisses and if you don’t get enough? Stand your ground, stamp your feet and demand some more! Failing that, take a look at some of the lovely things below that practically guarantee to make your pout as irresistible as a sugar-coated crumb on National Doughnut Day.
Take your pick from a total of over 20 shades of lip-boosting gloss. From the sheerest of pinks to the sparkliest of corals, the tingling formula of BareMinerals Buxom Big & Healthy Lip Polish will ensure a knee-trembling rush of blood to the hea pout.
Smells and tastes so damn good you’ll be hard-pressed to divert your attention away from this little pot of lip-smoothing scrubbiness. But divert you must! You have 24-hours to secure a lip-smacking partner, don’t delay.
With Wimbledon just around the corner, how could you resist this strawberry-scented offering from Carmex? If it’s a slightly less tremendous tingle you’re after, this cult classic balm with leave you feeling suitably nourished and prepped for a good ol’ smooching session.
If subtlety is more your thing, L’Occitane have got your back with their Rose Aurore Radiant Lip Gloss. Adorn your lips with a pink, delicate shimmer and let your natural radiance shine through while the moisturising formula ensures you’re well nourished enough to still be in a lips-locked position this time next year!
05: Lipstick Queen 3 Piece Lip Nouveau Collection (£30.96, qvcuk.com)
When is just one lipstick not enough? Always! Have your cake and eat it with this collection of colour from Lipstick Queen. A classic high-voltage red, a shimmering pink and a sheer deep crimson, this trio will see your lips looked-after from dawn-to-dusk, prepped for every occasion with a variety of texture.
One final piece of advice from the lip queen herself, Poppy King: “Most importantly, smile! It has been suggested that simply smiling increases endorphins which are the most flattering thing for natural glow ever.”
Have a great day lip-lovers, whoever you may be smooching!
When Christmas packaging is done right, it’s a joy to behold. There’s no other time of the year when packaging is more important… especially for lazy-ass people like me who will quite happily spend more on a present to avoid having to do battle with a roll of sellotape on Christmas Eve!
This is packaging done right:
L’Occitane will be bringing out an impressive range of Christmas gifts that will be sure to impress the women (or men!) in your life. With gift sets starting from just £20, there’s a beautifully packaged set to suit most budgets.
Here’s what will be available:
1. Precious Immortelle Collection – £49.00
Immortelle essential oil is renowned for its anti-ageing virtues. A complete anti-ageing collection, for visible radiance and youthful looking skin.
Immortelle Precious Cream 50ml
Immortelle Brightening Cleansing Foam 50ml
Immortelle Eye Balm 5ml
Immortelle Very Precious Cream 3ml
Immortelle Essential Face Water 200ml
2. Delicate Cherry Blossom Collection – £46.00
L’Occitane’s Cherry Blossom fragrance range celebrates the poetic beauty of the cherry blossom and its delicate, feminine flowers…
Cherry Blossom Eau De Toilette 100ml
Cherry Blossom Shower Gel 250ml
Cherry Blossom Body Lotion 75ml
Cherry Blossom Soap 50g
Cherry Blossom Hand Cream 30ml
L’Occitane are releasing a new limited edition range for the Summer set to tantalise our senses.
Verbena Summer Secret will launch this month with 4 products in the line up:
I’m a big fan of the original Verbena line up with it’s true citrusy notes that transport you from your 3′x3′ shower cubicle to the lemon groves of Sicily and let’s be honest… where else would you rather be on a Monday morning?
The range will include:
1. Moisturising Body Gel – £17.50
2. Shower Jelly – £12.50
3. Eau de Toilette – £34.00
4. Cooling Gloss – £7.00
I’m particularly keen to try the Moisturising Body Gel… it’s the word “gel”… anything that conjures up a mental image of being lightweight and easily absorbed is something that makes me sit up and take notice. Especially in this weather.
Are you a L’Occitane fan? What are your favourites from the brand?
I’m endlessly intrigued by colour-correcting all-in-one products like this and it reminds me a little of Guerlain’s infamous Meteorites… obviously not in appearance, but in ambition.
Inspired by a pink white peony with an extraordinary brightness, this illuminating face powder leaves skin soft and velvety, like a petal, and gives a stunning glow to the complexion.
Made with natural softening peony extract from Drôme (France) and mica powder coated with Provençal mimosa flower wax, the powder’s texture glides on smoothly and feels comfortable on the skin leaving an iridescent effect and a delicate perfumed.
Encompassing four sheer shades: pastel green to correct redness, light mauve to correct dullness and the blend of fresh pink and white to light up and refreshes the complexion.
It was tricky to get a swatch, as promised… this powder is soft and sheer, but you should be able to just about make out this swipe on the back of my hand
It’s a very slightly pearlescent pale pink when all four shades are swirled together. I dust the product all over my face after applying foundation and I do believe that it gives a luminosity to my skin. It’s very subtle, perhaps too subtle to warrant the £19.50 I paid for it, but I guess the proof is in the fact that I keep reaching for it day after day to set my foundation.
I’m not sold on the colour-correcting aspect of L’Occitane’s Illuminating powder… the shades are simply too sheer to do anything to counteract redness. I’d have to pile it on an inch thick before noticing any colour correction, but overall… it’s a very pleasant product to use. Delicately scented and velvet-textured, I’m glad I picked this up.
L’Occitane Etoile des Neiges Illuminating Powder is a limited edition product and available instore at L’Occitane.