Sundrunk by Imaginary Authors

All I can assume is that the first kiss was shared by two people with bad colds who both had mentholated cough drops recently.

I didn't mind it at first--I thought it smelled like Ben-Gay. But then it got worse and worse and worse, until I wished it still smelled like Ben-Gay. During the heart and on into the six hour+ dry down I think it took a progressively unpleasant medicinal turn.

It lost that Ben-Gay brightness. The menthol is not sweet and becomes overlaid with the bottled smell of multi-vitamins. Not in a good way. Not a good combination.

The vibe to me is an empty room at a nursing home, one occupant succumbed and another not yet installed. Although the room has been cleaned and possibly disinfected.

I never smelled one single thing I thought was "orange." But then, I'm not a surfer.

Réglisse Noire by 1000 Flowers

I am a fan of Lolita Lempicka and I was looking for a mint note. I do find it well blended and balanced. The pepper is subtle, thank the Lord.

I get anise and mint, both very lasting, with a soft, translucent base that rounds out the vanilla to avoid poaching on gourmand territory. It's just not that sweet.

It has a moderate sillage and seems to be lasting as well as any other EDT--going nicely into anise vanilla here at three hours in. The mint has faded but it was satisfying my minty desires while present and I'm liking the drydown with out it.

I like it very much, for myself or as I imagine a man wearing it on an evening date. A bit too "take a bite" for office work--too soft and come hither. An evening scent for either sex, I think, especially as the mint drops out. It's almost like dimming the lights and putting on soft music.

I have the 7ml sample size and I will enjoy every drop.

Ambre Blanc by Maison Rebatchi

I will need to be objective about this fragrance. It is so very far away from my style that I know I can't just give a gut reaction.

There are no florals. Very little powder, but some, with a touch of sweetness. I think the main thing I can say is that the elemi is a prominent note.

Oh dear. Elemi isn't listed as note. I must have made that up in my head.

Moving right along--heavy on the cedar, citrus, and always has a peppery sensation to me which is where I get elemi (resinous lemon pepper.) It does progress from "Dear God I want a hot shower with a loofah" to "Okay, it's less painful now."

It did provoke a strong reaction. It is lemon, resin, pepper and wood and more wood, heavy on the cedar. None of that merges pleasantly with the powder sweetness. It did last and have some sillage.

It did not spread any bright and luminous joy at my house.

Jasmin Satin by Maison Rebatchi

This is a pleasant soliflore. It always speaks jasmine, but one that is softened by the orange blossom and rounded by a lily accord. It is not indolic, but there is an alto depth. I don't find it to be overly sweet.

It has a sturdy sillage and the many basenotes listed must be mere touches as I find it to dry down to a lightly sweet musk. Very pleasant.

Lait Concentré by Chabaud Maison de Parfum

This lives up to it's name. Sweetened condensed milk, smoothed a rounded by a coconut note that blends into the scent well. I find it pleasant but short lived. It's a soft fragrance that sits close to the skin and fades into nothing much in a couple of hours.

I don't find it interesting.

Petal by Zents

I didn't use hairspray in the 80's. Or ever, actually. Maybe that's why I can like Petal?

I do get an early vibe of something a I find it hard to put into words but I wouldn't call it burnt plastic. It's more a bug poison kind of vibe. It's only on close sniff and it is prominent in the first few minutes.

This isn't a fragrance to sniff closely--it's too much....of much, of something at the beginning. This one is only to spray and get whiffs of from bit of distance.

I like the waxy impression. It makes me think of thick magnolia petals. Or the petals of my tryploid daylilies. I find magnolias to have a lemon tone. (At least the one in my backyard does.)

I get rose. And softness but not powder.

I do like freesia. Synthetic accord or not, this is waxy, fresh, slightly soapy, softly semi-sweet with a spring green tinge. It lacks any of the usual basenotes so it comes off as "something different" to me whenever I wear it. It lasts a fair bit of time--maybe six hours.

I'm wearing the "Parfum Body Spray" that the bottle says is "aromatherapeutic." from a 30ml bottle. I liked it well enough that I also got a 50ml of Eau de Toilette. I suppose that might have a different composition and effect my review but I can't compare because I'm so doused in the first one. I do find it uplifting.

Maybe it's honeydew, maybe it's Maybelline.

Annabel's Birthday Cake by Marissa Zappas

This is a pleasant fragrance, a bit on the weak side. I don't find it delivering what the name and note imply.

I get an initial impression of spice, clove perhaps, that skews this to a subdued, sweet-ish oriental vibe. I expected....oh, I don't know...cake. Silly me. There isn't anything particularly edible about roses. Even less so tuberose. I find it to be an odd pairing with the distinct chocolate base note.

It's very much less sweet that the sugar-heavy note descriptions led me to expect. I find it to be a soft fragrance.

White Musk by Ava Luxe

There is nothing bad about this scent. Fragrance notes here list white musk and white amber. Honesty in perfumery.

It's a fair white musk, I suppose. It begins slowly and ends without distinction. I don't find any brightness, no floral overtones, no powdery underpinning, no hint of spice, no....anything.

It's a two note thing from beginning to end. Nothing to look forward to. Nothing to expect. Nothing to tweak interest. But also nothing to distract. Nothing to regret.

It's soft skin scent. The simplest trace of warmth.

Worn overnight the musk fades out and there is an even softer, delicate scenting of the skin. This will be the white amber accord. It is only discernible with my nose pressed to my skin. I find it difficult to describe: faint, slightly sour, clear, slightly sweet, slightly woody.

I have ambroxan crystals from earlier attempts to educate my nose. I go looking for it and it's a miracle that I find it. Or not--it's still sitting on my perfume table where it has sat for, oh, a decade. I sniff Vanitrope crystals (propenyl guaethol) and sniff Ambroxan crystals.

It's the Vanitrope smell than triggered me to go hunting for these crystals. If you told me the white amber accord was 40% Ambroxan and 60% Vanitrope I'd still say something about a more clear resinous note. I'd be looking for 20,60,20.

That's enough analysis for me. I would never choose this as fragrance but I can see it's place. This is for a woman who wears tonal neutrals to an office environment. She has responsibilities, runs her own team, maintains professional attitudes. This is subtle nod to femininity.

Les Années 25 by Tauer

I tried this from a sample, on a day I wanted to try lots of samples. This was my fourth, and after "Very nice. Lily of Valley" and "Okay, honey gourmand." and "Chypres just aren't my thing." I came to Les Annees 25.

My gut response was "JEEEEESUS."

Gusto gonzo, indeed. Horrific. The top notes must be half the fragrance content and they seemed desperate to escape in the first minute. I wished I was riding in a very fast car so I could stick my hand out an open window.

It gets less awful after the citrus/ginger/kerosene assault. It still strikes me as heavy with oakmoss accord and immature ambergris. The benzoin, patchouli, sandalwood, and vanilla/tonka notes sweeten the heart but there is a phase of unpleasant competition and discord.

I didn't give up on this, because I know ambergris. I have a small chunk of natural ambergris and I think about it.

I take a step outside into a cold, soft breeze and sit on my deck. In the dry down, the more powdery aspects comes to fore--not that it's a powdery scent by any means, but it's softened almost imperceptibly.

This means a couple things to me. I applied too much and I sniffed too closely through out. Even the heart doesn't bear a close sniff. Too much motor oil.

I do not forgive the aggressive top notes by any means, but perhaps they trigger an endorphin release. When they have dissipated, mercifully, I find the wafting scent to be pleasant. Not for me, certainly, but pleasant. I should wait until more hours pass to write this review for completeness sake but three hours is enough of my time.

Time I will never get back, by the way. My own take on things is not geared to endure a nasty hour to find relief after two hours in a tolerable dry down. Escape doesn't seem like an acceptable endpoint.

I pity the man who sprays this on his neck.

Prima T by Bruno Acampora

It's always fun for me to write a negative review that bucks the trend. You can count on Shycat for her honest opinion.

My first impression was citrus and galbanum. The citrus is fleeting. The galbanum is prominent. The musky chypre base take about 30 minutes to bloom and the galbanum remains a prominent note.

I read the other reviews about violet, jasmine, and rose. I searched for them but didn't find them as individual notes--I didn't feel indoles or flowers except for the violet I found at about an hour. It was musky chypre violet. Not unpleasant. I do tend to like galbanum.

At about three hours I kept getting surprising and unpleasant whiffs of scented deodorant and that was my impression for the rest of the day.

I can't recommend any fragrance that becomes nice after an hour, is nice for two hours, and then smells like a drugstore deodorant for three more hours.

It isn't worth the ride.


It's a long ride. I've had it on for 10 hours now and the soapy/deodorant vibe has faded out to leave a truly miserable acrid smell that makes me flinch a bit.

No poetry for me.

Pearl Musk by Ava Luxe

Clean, light, musk (but not laundry type.) Softly vanillic, moderately powdered, and with a prominent carnation note, ever so slightly and briefly spicy in the opening. I get no soap impression or plastic impression.

The effect is bright while soft, innocent, and most assuredly feminine. Lasts nicely into my 7th hour, now at the musk base.

Foxfire by Avon

I love it when I try some fragrance without much warning and without much hope. So it was with vintage Foxfire that I believe I ordered by accident or bundle or some such fragrant happenstance as I pursued Tasha.

I pondered throwing away a couple of bottles to ease my household panic during a cleaning binge. Eh, it's not in me to toss anything untried--damn, the stopper is hard to get out and I grumped that it would be that much easier to pitch.

It seemed to me to open crisp and mineral, a bit green. It sweetened and softened with a bit of rose and powder. Over animal armpit BO. Wicked strong stuff as well. I think, oh Lord, this is the kind of thing Basenotes people just rave about and isn't sold anymore. I don't know WHAT to think. It isn't "me." But should it be? Once in a while?

Powder seems to go into smokiness and I'm reminded of a signature of a dear member here "How do you know what a French whorehouse smells like?"

Surely it smells like Foxfire.

Eau des Merveilles by Hermès

I suppose orange and cedar are not my favorite pairing. I've never cared for a cedar note. I find the vetiver to be dusty and the orange to be overwhelming and dry. I don't find the ambergris note.

I do experience a floral overtone but somehow this composition doesn't please me. An hour in I'm wondering how they got this effect and what synthetic chemicals are at play-- the orange is orange: it's not sour, but sweet. And yet dessicated, underpinned by something that tickles my gag reflex. Not fecal, not animalic, not civet.

As I type the above...I realize I'm back to hating peppered fruity florals. Oh my, this is giving me Stephanie flashbacks.

Edit written not 15 minutes later:

My dear son comes out of his room. Stops 12 feet away from me to stand longingly in front of the pantry--I've walked through the kitchen about 30 minutes ago but not so far as the pantry, about two hours after four small spritzes (context for sillage and longevity.) Spontaneously says:

"I like that perfume you have on."

This is the second complement I've ever gotten from him, the last when he was 10 years old for Blue Amber.

What's a mama to do....

Nuit de Cellophane by Serge Lutens

First thought: Juicy Fruit gum. Later, soap.

I give it a neutral because I've always liked that gum.

Intense Cherry by Montale

Well I like it.

Brooklyn by Gallivant

I should wear it a few times before I commit, at least through to the dry down once--but I'm not gonna. I have an idea this one gives it best punch in the heart because it's quite distinctive--a smoky, lightly sweet, slightly floral, powder.

I see other comments about top notes but I didn't notice any top phase. It seems to me it shot right into the heart and has stayed there for an hour. I can't recall another fragrance that has so starkly combined incense and powder. It has an underlying dirtiness--from smoke and musk contrasting with a fresh sweet powder. I'm finding it very interesting--almost challenging, which I tell myself is absurd but I can't get away from the slight sense of strained contrast.

Interesting is good. Hence, thumbs up!

Musc Intense by Nicolaï

Too sweet, too synthetic. Plastic undertone. Scrubbed.

Pyromancy by Sixteen92

The listed notes don't prepare me for Pyromancy, which fact I find annoying.

Pryomancy strikes me as a rich, honey, gourmand leaning thing. The "embers" will be warm spices--cinnamon I'd say, is in there with the brightness of cardamom. The tea/tobacco accord blends to a sense of dark warmth.

Oud is an overstatement, and smoke is an overstatement. My impression is some softness suggesting amber, an indistinct wood, perhaps a touch of patchouli, and ambroxan.

I feel better about it all after I visit her site in a bit of pique to find her describe it as

"A warm and spicy cold weather atmospheric with gourmand nuances."

Rose of No Man's Land by Byredo

The first time I wore this, I quite liked it. Definitely a clean, light, biting rose made for a man. It gave me some grapefruit thoughts, and mellowed out to pleasant pepper amber.

The second time around I was trying to analyze and it almost choked me. The opening pepper is quite strong to my nose, along with a green sensation of leaf. I never can get on board with pepper tied up to a well known floral. It always strikes me as unpleasantly dissonant, and this is no exception but not the worst I've ever smelled.

It certainly is a rose, but I can get completely caught up trying to decide if that aromatic bite is lavender or some other aromatic that just feels like lavender. I see the raspberry blossom listed above but I just get aromatic sharpness without berry or fruit.

There is a clean, lightly soapy undertone to this rose. Laundry musk, I'd say. By two hours, it's down to a very nice powdery amber and if there's papyrus in here you couldn't prove it by me. The pepper really hangs in there.

Fruits de Noël : Orange & Amande / Orange & Almond by Yves Rocher

Orange & Amande is a soft skin scent of sweet orange fruit with complementing almond and sugar, lightly touched with vanilla. There might possibly be a hint of warm amber or maybe a slight sprinkling of nutmeg.

It's pleasant, warm, and Christmas-y, but when I say soft skin scent I mean soft skin scent. I've sprayed it onto a blotter and almost threw it away as odorless. To get anything even at skin level requires a pretty good coating. This is likely a good level of fragrance at a family get together for a big holiday meal--no one will be disturbed by this fragrance on you, and yet for close hugs one wouldn't be scentless.

Powder Flowers by Montale

Powder Flowers is an unfortunate pairing to my nose. There is a lightly sweet floral accord and softness from tonka that seems quite nice. There is another note that dominates my experience of the top and heart--it strikes me as strident, sharp, and urinous. I suppose this is Atlas Cedar. Truly an unhappy couple--feminine powder and old urine.

I thought about scrubbing but I just pulled down my sleeves and went for the ride. Kinda forgot about it until I kept get unpleasant whiffs of something...was it hairspray? Was it nasty scented deodorant? Honestly and for true, I caught this stink about half dozen times and dismissed it before I thought...omg, this is Powder Flowers in dry down.

So bad I decided to review and comment--and then laughed when I saw "the nose knows" wrote about a gentle whiff of bug spray in the dry down. If I could give it two thumbs down, I would.

Burberry Brit Rhythm for Her Floral by Burberry

Poor Brit Rhythm. It's not what I want at the moment. Aside from practically gagging me in my fragile state, I can say that it opens with a blast of wet, indolic, jasmine/synthetic lilac. I feel sure the entire fragrance is synthetic, but the jasmine note seems more well orchestrated. If I had to guess, and of course I do have to guess since nobody's coughing up any actual perfumer's notes, I'd say the "lilac" note is just a whack of indoles.

I can't appreciate any top notes. It does settle shortly to a more pleasant accord. The amber does come up and offer some barely sweet barely powder balance. And I do like lilac.

Xeno suggested this from my sample wardrobe when I was on the yen for baby powder. It's soft, waxy/lightly indolic floral, softened with amber that only barely approaches powdery, not sweet, and clean, slightly soapy musk. All in all a scent I'd call "Good enough...but not really good." Perhaps if I hadn't spent so very much time bathed in Highland Lilac I'd cut this one some more slack, but my nose is tuned to what I *want* lilac to smell like.

I have a sneaking suspicion that "driftwood" equals norlimbanol, but I can't really get that sense in the heart. Have to say, no scratchiness. Whatever "driftwood" is in here is floating in lotus I suppose.

Also, if anybody wants to know (hint: you're about to find out) what rings the death knell of "garbage can for you, d*&$ sample" it's a soap note. I don't know how many different ways a perfume can slide into the soap note gravity well or which notes trigger that sensation in my personal brain, but I sure know it when I smell it.

By gum, this is masculine. I like it much better as long as I flip the gender marketing. For me to wear, it's a neutral. For a man--strange it is, my brain, for man that's comfortable in a velvet smoking jacket, I'll give it thumbs up.

Psychedelic Love by Initio

I'm fresh from a blind pass and one of the things I realized is that heliotrope is a mystery to me. Psychedelic Love is helping me over that little stumbling block.

My first impression was sweet gourmand. I feel the rose, but I thought the scent dominated by a caramel vanilla with a lifting benzoin type of penetrating freshness.

What is it really? You can read the notes above as well as I. It's heliotrope, and it's a big whack of heliotrope. Sugared almond vanilla, with rose and myrrh for balance. There's sandalwood in here, and perhaps that's where I'm getting the creaminess. I'm sure sandalwood is really in here, as well as some unlisted aromachemicals that give the sense of lifting freshness--needed, here, to avoid collapse of some heavy note. No perfume pyramid would lie to us!

Ferré for Men by Gianfranco Ferré

I've not been writing reviews on the exploration of the masculine side of fragrances. I don't have enough experience to offer anything meaningful, and most of these feel utterly alien compared to anything I'd wear myself. I really have to mind warp myself in evaluating them from either a man's perspective, or keeping in mind what I'd like to smell on a man.

That ends with Ferre. As soon as it hit my wrist, I thought, hey, deodorant. I can promise you, neither I nor any man in my life *ever* wore a scented deodorant. My ability to actually analyze a fragrance remains abysmal with Ferre--oh, I can get a top note, and I can get a basenote or two. Heartnotes seem to escape me utterly.

What doesn't escape me with Ferre, and what's never happened to me before (never is a big word and I mean it,) it the way Ferre makes me flinch when I sniff it up close--not from a particular displeasure, but from a tiny needle that hits my sensitive upper nose. I can fatigue this need to sneeze, and concentrate on the fragrance for a deeper sniff, and it makes me cough.

So something no bueno.

I'm wondering if this the "scratchy" synthetic sandalwood I've read of, or a particularly piercing lavender over a particularly soapy vetiver, not ignoring synthetic oakmoss which is never a note I enjoy.

It's an easy decision to leave the close sniffing out as the fragrance progresses, and I go forward in a realistic manner of catching whiffs through the day.

Whiffs that always say "Hey. More than deodorant--this is deodorant on armpit." Floral vetiver AND musk. Fresh AND...well, not dirty per se, but sour and piercing, with a bit of a lye/caustic feel.

LOL! I started this review with a neutral thumb--reading back my own impressions, how can I let that stand? Thumbs down from this woman.

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