Help with finding a perfume

Margot1

Active member
Sep 12, 2021
I’d love some input to find a great perfume. I don’t really love most perfumes on the shelves that are popular. (Pretty much none of the big names at any cosmetic counter) I do however love almost every Parisians scent passing by them on the street. I have liked a couple of Carven perfumes and was also thinking of trying Sillages Paris where they create a scent for you. I have even thought about just making the perfume myself since I can’t find what I’m looking for. Any help or possible suggestions would be greatly appreciated!
 

cacio

Basenotes Plus
Basenotes Plus
Nov 5, 2010
Where do you live and what is your price point? Depending, one might be able to suggest places and things to try.
 

Margot1

Active member
Sep 12, 2021
Thanks for the replies!
I live in the Outer Banks of North Carolina so we are very limited here. Pretty much only options of perfume are Ulta and a department store Belk. I do go up to Virginia to do most shopping but even then not so great unless I drive much further north. I haven’t thought much about a price point, the most I might spend on a really good perfume would probably be $250.

Sillages allows me to get some samples online sent to me but I won’t be traveling to Paris anytime soon, so online samples would be only way I could try it.

And I’m a bit limited on the perfumes I’ve liked. The last two I’ve had were both Carven. The Le Parfum and the L’Absolu. Learning about what scent profiles I may be into, I like floral, oriental, gourmand and woody. But nothing too overpowering and old lady-just would love a good balance
 

Margot1

Active member
Sep 12, 2021
Thanks! I’ve always wanted to try them, but haven’t seen them anywhere close to here. I’ll check it out thanks!
 

Bavard

Wearing Perfume Right Now
Moderator
Basenotes Plus
Jul 20, 2015
A couple top picks from our bottles on hand for the Parisian style are Prada Infusion d'Iris and Chanel No. 5.

IMG_6344.jpg

I'm not sure if the Prada edp absolue version shown is still available retail. I like older bottles of No. 5 like this that you can find online for good deals (eBay, Etsy, etc.).
 

Margot1

Active member
Sep 12, 2021
I haven’t tried the Prada, but I haven’t loved the Chanel no5 perfumes. Of course I’ve only tried the newer versions of the last few years. Also how does the older bottles hold up? I’ve always thought perfumes can go bad after so long a time?
 

Margot1

Active member
Sep 12, 2021
I see they have two options for a sampler- one is noir that seems heavier and the discovery politesse which seems very light. I’m not sure which I would try. I’m looking for not too heavy(everyone n room smells you no matter where you are, but not to fresh and light) more of pass me on the street and get a small glimpse of scent
 

cacio

Basenotes Plus
Basenotes Plus
Nov 5, 2010
$250 is quite a good budget (though sadly many brands are above that price level). Just to toss in another brands selling large sample sets, I quite like Etat Libre d'Orange. I also agree that Lutens was the king of floriental-woody-gourmand, but I am not fond of the recent ones, plus the price can be quite high.

I don't know NC much. The niche perfume stores I know are here in DC's suburbs, quite far away.

cacio
 

Margot1

Active member
Sep 12, 2021
Ok thanks I’ll check that out. Typically I’ve spent $100-140 for perfume but I’m willing to splurge on something I really love. Yeah not many options here unfortunately and would much prefer to smell them all in person but will have to settle for trial and error online
 

Margot1

Active member
Sep 12, 2021
Ok first- thanks so much for all your help! I’ve decided to try a little of all your suggestions.
I ordered the almost complete collection set from Etat Libre d’orange which will give me 20 of their samples.
I also ordered 3 different sampler sets from surrender to chance which includes 20 samples:

Arquiste Infanta en Flor
Caron Narcisse Noir EDT
Dior Grand Bal
Jo Malone Orange Blossom
Hermes 24, Faubourg
Houbigant Orangers en Fleurs
L'Artisan Seville l'Aube
Narciso Rodriguez EDT
Serge Lutens Fleurs d'Oranger
Tom Ford Neroli Portofino

Serge Lutens Sarrasins
Serge Lutens A La Nuit
Lancome Jasmins Marzipane
Montale Jasmin Full

Dusita Splendiris
Frederic Malle Le Parfum de Therese
Jo Malone Violet & Amber Absolu
La Curie Ossuary
Parfume d'Empire Equistrius
Serge Lutens Bois de Violette
Sixteen92 Mellifera

Can’t wait to try them!! Again thanks for all your help and if there are any other recommendations please let me know
 

Margot1

Active member
Sep 12, 2021
Ok will do! Also forgot I ordered these samples as well-

Frederic Malle Carnal Flower
Robert Piguet Fracas EDP
Serge Lutens Tubereuse Criminelle

Should give me a perfume a day to test out🤓
 

Margot1

Active member
Sep 12, 2021
I think this whole looking for a new perfume may have started me onto a new obsession ��
 

Wingie

Basenotes Plus
Basenotes Plus
Dec 2, 2009
I think this whole looking for a new perfume may have started me onto a new obsession ��

That's how it started for me, Margot. It all started with looking for a new perfume. Ten years later, I now have over 80 bottles and decants, and that's tame by BN standards. Enjoy :smiley:
 

Margot1

Active member
Sep 12, 2021
Nice! I think it may be the same for me�� I just received all the perfume samples yesterday and am super excited to test them out! So far really loving the Etat Libre d’orange samples but can only test out so many at a time. Will definitely report back on some of my faves!
 

Margot1

Active member
Sep 12, 2021
Anyone have a good recommendation for a print out that I can make notes with while I test perfumes? Would love to write down notes, Sillages, etc that I can compare what I try with notes I like. Would love a spreadsheet or chart I can fill in
 

rum

Moderator
Moderator
Basenotes Plus
Mar 17, 2011
Anyone have a good recommendation for a print out that I can make notes with while I test perfumes? Would love to write down notes, Sillages, etc that I can compare what I try with notes I like. Would love a spreadsheet or chart I can fill in

Don't know exactly what you mean by a 'print out', but our very own Basenotes wardrobe might help - you can use the 'private notes' link to write-up your own (private) notes on a each scent, save them and refer back to them whenever you like.

Be advised though that the site will be upgraded from Monday 27th.
 

Margot1

Active member
Sep 12, 2021
Ok thanks yeah something like that maybe but wouldn’t mind a page I can print out to write on. Also didn’t know if there already was a good chart that is a bit more in depth with notes I hadn’t thought to include myself. Hope that makes sense
 

StylinLA

Well-known member
Aug 9, 2009
Ok will do! Also forgot I ordered these samples as well-

Frederic Malle Carnal Flower
Robert Piguet Fracas EDP
Serge Lutens Tubereuse Criminelle

Should give me a perfume a day to test out��

Ahhh...Tuberose eh?

Welcome to Basenotes and look forward to hearing about your journey.

You've got quite a selection coming your way. Take your time, and don't test too many at one sitting. It will confuse your nose and they will bleed together in your head. These aren't questions that need immediate answers. Be patient and enjoy the trip.

Suggest you just keep your own simple log and note what you like, longevity, etc. Don't concern yourself over "notes" analysis. Focus on what feels right for you. When you find that one (or more), you will rock it.

Also as someone new to the journey, be careful about the dreaded olfactory fatigue when it comes to longevity. If you have a close friend or significant other, get their input on scent's lasting ability. i.e. Just because you can't smell it, don't assume it's not still there for others.
 

Margot1

Active member
Sep 12, 2021
Thanks for the advice! I received all the perfume on Monday and have been limiting them to just trying and wearing one a day. I can definitely see how your senses can easily get overwhelmed by too many at once! And I have been just journaling them in a notebook making some of my own thoughts. I have also been writing down all the specific scent notes only because I am really interested in seeing what seems to draw or repel me. Really am loving the experience!!
 

Margot1

Active member
Sep 12, 2021
Sorry just now seeing your reply! So far I have liked a few from the Etat Libre d’Orange. From my other samples I haven’t found a certain brand or line but I’ve only tried a total of 17 perfumes so I still have a ways to go🙃

Here’s my list of what I’ve tried so far- I have 3 categories: Loved, Liked and might possibly wear again and a definite no.

From Etat Libre d’Orange-
Loved:
spice must flow
Tom of Finland
I am trash

Liked & possibly wear again-

rossy de palma eau de protection hermann a mes cotes me paraissait une ombre
la fin du monde

Definitely no-

Rein Incense
remarkable people

From the surrender to chance mixed samples:

Loved-

Narciso Rodriguez EDT
Frederic Malle Carnal Flower

Liked-

Caron Narcisse Noir EDT
Serge Lutens Fleurs d'Oranger

Definitely no-

L'Artisan Seville l'Aube
D.S & Durga jazmin Yucatan
Montale Jasmin Full
Frederic Malle Le Parfum de Therese
Serge Lutens Tubereuse Criminelle
 

grayspoole

Basenotes Plus
Basenotes Plus
Feb 4, 2014
Hi Margot1-

A (belated) welcome to Basenotes! I’ve spent many happy vacations in the Outer Banks, and I hope that I get a chance to return there soon.

I enjoyed reading about your on-going perfume explorations, and I thought your list of samples was exceptionality good. Keeping a journal of your reactions is a wise move. Above all, trust your own nose and instincts. Published perfume note lists are driven by marketing, rather than precise description. Use the note lists as a guide, if you want, but don’t stress out if you don’t smell “rosewood” or “suede” or “peony” or whatever else is said to be in there.

I see that you are sampling many richly floral perfumes (with notes of orange blossom, jasmine, tuberose, iris, violet), and I love florals too.

I will restrain myself from going on and on about vintage perfumes and say only that, yes, some perfumes are much better in old versions (if only you can find them). You have two great classic florals on your list—Fracas and Narcisse Noir. The current version of Fracas is quite good. Not sure about the current Narcisse Noir, but it is undoubtedly a great perfume in its vintage form.

Good luck! I’ll look forward to learning which perfumes emerge as your top favorites,
 

Margot1

Active member
Sep 12, 2021
Aww thanks so much!
Love hearing everyone’s bits of advice and suggestions!
I actually tried the Robert Piguet Fracas EDP this week and LOVED it😍 floral, and also something that reminded me of butter and sugared toast. The longevity didn’t last as long as I’d have hoped but don’t mind reapplying mid day because it smelled amazing.
I also tried a few more I really loved-

Sixteen92 Mellifera, this was a thicker consistency, strong spicy honey fragrance- reminded me of a lip gloss I loved from the 90s so a bit nostalgic and had a great lasting longevity. Cannot understand the price for this tho! Underpriced in my opinion but I won’t complain😸 I actually ordered a bottle the day I tried it.

La Curie Ossuary, started out very peppery and violet, earthy maybe some leather or charcoal, then it melded into more of the violet. I have french Violette mints I love and this was those mints in a bottle 😍

Tried one more I’m wearing today- Etat Libre d’Orange Fat Electrician but don’t think I love it. It actually does smell to me a bit like electricity or wires. Very peppery. Don’t hate it but not a love either. So I may try again and get second thoughts.

Also liked the Narcisse Noir EDT, reminded me of the French soap I love but also a bit sweet and gourmand. It did meld into a smell I didn’t quite love but wonder if maybe the vintage would be better
 
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Margot1

Active member
Sep 12, 2021
Also found another sample I really like- Serge Lutens Bois de Violette. Safe to say I really like the violet scents. Funny I love jasmine but haven’t loved any of the samples so far, only hav 4 and have tried 3 but nothing that has stood out, maybe need to try a few more.
Maybe I need to start a new thread for this but I’m heading to Charleston SC in a few weeks and was curious about any perfumeries I should check out while I’m there?
Also bought 10 more samples to try when I haven’t even finished what I’ve got😬
Here’s the new samples:
Annick Goutal Sables EDT
Borsari Violetta di Parma EDP
Carla Fracci Giselle EDP
Death and Floral The blues are all the same
Dior Bois D’Argent
Ellis Brooklyn Bee
Guerlain Elixir Charnel Gourmand Coquin
Hexennacht Honeycomb Calcite
Frederic Malle Portrait of a lady
Isabey Gardenia
 

PStoller

I’m not old, I’m vintage.
Basenotes Plus
Aug 1, 2019
I feel you: I have literally hundreds of samples I have yet to try, and I’m buying bottles in between.

I’m not a huge Fracas or tuberose fan, but I have a current sample that I plan to compare soon to my vintage mini. I’ll let you know what I think.

Since you like violets, I recommend vintage (83°) Violettes de Toulouse by Berdoues. This can sometimes be had quite inexpensively, and I was surprised at its quality. I greatly preferred it to Borsari Violetta di Parma.
 

Margot1

Active member
Sep 12, 2021
DB9BCCBF-1067-4F72-9CC4-034C6AD585F0.jpeg I feel you: I have literally hundreds of samples I have yet to try, and I’m buying bottles in between.

I’m not a huge Fracas or tuberose fan, but I have a current sample that I plan to compare soon to my vintage mini. I’ll let you know what I think.

Since you like violets, I recommend vintage (83°) Violettes de Toulouse by Berdoues. This can sometimes be had quite inexpensively, and I was surprised at its quality. I greatly preferred it to Borsari Violetta di Parma.
Haha glad I’m not the only one😉
I loved the Fracas and the Carnal Flower, I’ve only sampled three tuberoses but I liked two out of the three. Definitely let me know what you think!
I looked up the Violettes de Toulouse by Berdoues, i included a picture I found online, is this the right one?
 

PStoller

I’m not old, I’m vintage.
Basenotes Plus
Aug 1, 2019
I looked up the Violettes de Toulouse by Berdoues, i included a picture I found online, is this the right one?
Bottle shapes vary, but that’s the right label. Right now, it’s looking pretty pricy on eBay, where I got mine for a song not so long ago. I’d venture you’re safe to sit tight until someone less proud of their old bottle comes along and asks a sane amount.
 

Margot1

Active member
Sep 12, 2021
Bottle shapes vary, but that’s the right label. Right now, it’s looking pretty pricy on eBay, where I got mine for a song not so long ago. I’d venture you’re safe to sit tight until someone less proud of their old bottle comes along and asks a sane amount.
Haha gotcha will do! Was thinking I need to keep my eyes open for some perfumes at the thrift stores…..
 

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