Your Favorite Cheapies

thediamondsea

Well-known member
Jan 10, 2016
Congratulations for your purchase so far and just adding yet another recommendation in favor of a fragrance house just discovered today, namely Monotheme, their fragrance named Black Musk combining niche-tier packaging with a modern, but not too light nor sanitized take on musk, appropriate for either gender, halfway through between a gourmand and an animalic fragrance, with a darker, edgier, more brooding, luxurious and eccentric take on both of these main themes.

Interesting . . .must investigate . . .
 

Bal a Versailles

Well-known member
Feb 15, 2012
Ivoire (new) is lovely, Mauboussin EDP for women is glorious, Tocade Rochas seemingly forgotten, but Maurice Roucel's composition is super. Lumiere Noire by Gres is so close to Coco Mademoiselle your head will spin. Infusion d'Iris in the Absolue version is the better one IMHO and the new Narciso EDT in the black bottle is my new love. All these purchased from Frag Net or X as I live in the South Pacific and many perfumes are extremely hard to get even if I wanted to pay those high prices
 

thediamondsea

Well-known member
Jan 10, 2016
Ivoire (new) is lovely, Mauboussin EDP for women is glorious, Tocade Rochas seemingly forgotten, but Maurice Roucel's composition is super. Lumiere Noire by Gres is so close to Coco Mademoiselle your head will spin. Infusion d'Iris in the Absolue version is the better one IMHO and the new Narciso EDT in the black bottle is my new love. All these purchased from Frag Net or X as I live in the South Pacific and many perfumes are extremely hard to get even if I wanted to pay those high prices

Just curious--how recently have you checked out Tocade?
, ,
 

Bal a Versailles

Well-known member
Feb 15, 2012
I bought the reformulation within the last year. My tastes have broadened over the years, as has my waistline, so the Turkish delight in Tocade makes me think of roses, rose petals, rosewater and vanilla extract in a foodie sense, not so much as a rose perfume. I've never found the ultimate rose perfume except when I had a large garden of heritage roses and I could sink my nose into them.
 

thediamondsea

Well-known member
Jan 10, 2016
Update: The Quartz arrived the other day. I really like it--it's super zingy. (To me, every perfume kind of has a wine analogue, and Quartz reminds me of Portuguese Vinho Verde). I think I'm going to keep it in the fridge this summer and use it when we get to the scorchers.
 

thediamondsea

Well-known member
Jan 10, 2016
I bought the reformulation within the last year. My tastes have broadened over the years, as has my waistline, so the Turkish delight in Tocade makes me think of roses, rose petals, rosewater and vanilla extract in a foodie sense, not so much as a rose perfume. I've never found the ultimate rose perfume except when I had a large garden of heritage roses and I could sink my nose into them.

A whole garden? Nice!!

The current Tocade sounds fabulous.

I agree that nothing smells like fresh roses--but I love rose notes. They can be regal, juicy, edible, comforting, boozy, masculine, feminine . . .
 

PerfumedLady

Basenotes Plus
Basenotes Plus
Jul 4, 2010
Update: The Quartz arrived the other day. I really like it--it's super zingy. (To me, every perfume kind of has a wine analogue, and Quartz reminds me of Portuguese Vinho Verde). I think I'm going to keep it in the fridge this summer and use it when we get to the scorchers.

How did I miss this?! That's great news; so glad you like it! I keep my EA Green Tea in the fridge but never thought of it when I had Quartz. Think it will work brilliantly as a cold spritzer. Now I want a new bottle too! And a bottle of Vinho Verde to go with it.
 

Bavard

Wearing Perfume Right Now
Moderator
Basenotes Plus
Jul 20, 2015
I enjoy buying partially used vintage bottles of classics, which are frequently found in this price range, and to that end, ebay has become my go to for good prices on great fragrances.

*Edit to add* a note on minis. This is another great way to expand your collection without doing decants or expensive full bottles

I am firmly with ErinK on this one, and I would add Etsy as another online shopping site.
 

BoyChanel

Well-known member
Jun 18, 2014
Cheap? The word does not register in my vocabulary.
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IsoESuperman

People of Zee Wurl, Relax
Basenotes Plus
Dec 30, 2015
I am firmly with ErinK on this one, and I would add Etsy as another online shopping site.

Another vote for Etsy. It's not a guarantee, but I've had really good luck with talking directly to some sellers, lots of helpful folks. One great shop is Ravenscourt Apothecary. Her fragrances don't contain any perfumers alcohol (any alcohol for that matter) so they're more oils than anything, but their simplicity is a good way to cut your teeth on note ID and picking apart pyramids. She makes great vegan soaps too :)
 

thediamondsea

Well-known member
Jan 10, 2016
Okay. Time to resurrect this thread--reduced circumstances have brought me back around to exploring the somewhat shadowy world of lost classics/designer stuff that fell by the wayside/great value etc. I'm desperately trying to avoid Luckyscent (sorry, guys--I promise to come back!) and focus on the things that I never got around to or never even heard of. I've done some digging through the "unsung treasures" thread and found quite a bit of interesting stuff, but I'm curious about what everyone's thoughts are on your favorite cheap thrills these days.

I'm much savvier at sussing out bargains on current(ish) stuff and well-known classics than when I first posted this thread, but I'm also still hungry for interesting stuff that's new to me, at least. This post served me well in the past, and I hope it will again.

Out of the recces from last time around, I've purchased or been given or at least sampled quite a few goodies, including
Molyneaux Quarts (and dang, I love it)
Silences
Natori
Gold & Black Sugar (not mentioned here but really enjoyed and obviously went head-over-teakettle for Black Sugar)
Tokyomilk Waltz, Arsenic and Bulletproof
Ted Lapidus Rumba
Queen Latifa Queen and Queen of Hearts
Worth Je Reviens

I'm especially interested in what you guys think about some of the Cacharel stuff (Noa, Eden, and pretty much everything besides Loulou, which I love but wore the snot out of in high school and vastly prefer the vintage), anything from Ted Lapidus, Ulrich de Varens, Capucci (current formulations especially) and some of the back catalogue Nina Riccis. Plus anything else y'all know and like. Many many thanks in advance--
 

remik

Well-known member
Nov 1, 2012
CK One Shock for Him

Surprisingly, it has nothing to do with the original CK One, and is a very nice cheapie that you can buy for some $25/6.7oz. It's has a striking similarity to Burberry London for Men. It's tobacco, but very light and fresh. Completely unexpected from Calvin Klein, and should not have been released under the "CK One" umbrella - it is NOT a flanker of CK One at all.

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thediamondsea

Well-known member
Jan 10, 2016
Avon is/was all aldehydic florals through much of the 50's-70's but I can name-drop some if you wanna try femmes from that period.

Yes, please!! Especially if they feature ylang, orange blossom, neroli and/or rose in the primary notes. I'm a sucker for sweaty yellow florals, big white florals (tuberose and I are good friends), and I'll wear anything rosy. Should any of them also be green florals, chypre-esque, or even hint at leather, I'll be all over it. Oh--and iris, of course.

I know a lot of the names, and I used to get into my grandmother's Avon collection all the time when I was a little kid (in the 70s), but my memories are pretty dim. I'm not too hot on big orientals unless they're greenish or have a serious floral component.

Thanks, ZC!
 

thediamondsea

Well-known member
Jan 10, 2016
CK One Shock for Him

Surprisingly, it has nothing to do with the original CK One, and is a very nice cheapie that you can buy for some $25/6.7oz. It's has a striking similarity to Burberry London for Men. It's tobacco, but very light and fresh. Completely unexpected from Calvin Klein, and should not have been released under the "CK One" umbrella - it is NOT a flanker of CK One at all.

View attachment 82700
interesting! Thanks, remik! I especially appreciate your noting that it has nothing to do with CK One, because that stuff is my kryptonite.
 

Bal a Versailles

Well-known member
Feb 15, 2012
I loved Hillaire's thread. Noa is a good musk and I do get a whiff of latte from it here and there. Amor Amor is mentioned by none other than Chris Sheldrake as a very well done budget perfume. I was one of the first to buy LouLou and I got tired of it very quickly. My best budget buys at present, ones that I actually wear frequently are Balmain's Ivoire remake and Lumiere Noire by Gres. I am also fond of Cabaret. Courreges 'Blanc' is something like a CK, but better, and cheap as chips, has a lovely iris, see Bois de Jasmin.
Clinique's 'Beyond Rose' has won me over, hugely expensive at the outset, is now at discounters and well worth buying.
 

thediamondsea

Well-known member
Jan 10, 2016
I loved Hillaire's thread. Noa is a good musk and I do get a whiff of latte from it here and there. Amor Amor is mentioned by none other than Chris Sheldrake as a very well done budget perfume. I was one of the first to buy LouLou and I got tired of it very quickly. My best budget buys at present, ones that I actually wear frequently are Balmain's Ivoire remake and Lumiere Noire by Gres. I am also fond of Cabaret. Courreges 'Blanc' is something like a CK, but better, and cheap as chips, has a lovely iris, see Bois de Jasmin.
Clinique's 'Beyond Rose' has won me over, hugely expensive at the outset, is now at discounters and well worth buying.

Yes--that thread has been the gift that has kept on giving. Some of the stuff in there is rare as hen's teeth, but some of it is still gettable, and I'll be exploring more of it soon.

I'm feeling pretty confident about a blind buy with Noa. Victoria over at Bois de Jasmin has great things to say about it, and I find her palate aligns with mine more often than not (and I truly do appreciate her eclecticism--as much as I love niche and want to wear it much of the time, I also enjoy exploring other avenues, because the perfume world is a big place and there's a lot of excellent work out there that goes unappreciated). I was also a very early adopter of Loulou, and I hit my vintage mini once in a blue moon because I do love the drydown). Amor Amor seems like a riskier proposition, as I believe there is fruit involved and I could kind of go either way with that.

I LOVE the new Ivoire; I have a mini that I'm going to kill fairly soon and have to replace with a FB. It wears really well and it's always a nice break from my usual diet of skank and ylang ylang and weird orientals.

That Correges sounds interesting, and so does the Clinique. I'll take a look around and see what I find.
 

thediamondsea

Well-known member
Jan 10, 2016
Fancy Nights - Jessica Simpson.

Sirene by Vicky Tiel

Oh, noooo . . . not Jessica! I'm just kidding (sort of). It's soooo hard to separate the celeb from the perfume for me, but I keep hearing good things about FN. You and I need to catch up anyway, and I need to send you some stuff, so I'll get a PM to you and maybe we can work something out :).

Vicky Tiel is another name I see mentioned in the realm of underappreciated perfume. I need to look up the name and learn something, clearly.

Thanks, HoP~~
 

Varanis Ridari

The Scented Devil
Basenotes Plus
Oct 17, 2012
Yes, please!! Especially if they feature ylang, orange blossom, neroli and/or rose in the primary notes. I'm a sucker for sweaty yellow florals, big white florals (tuberose and I are good friends), and I'll wear anything rosy. Should any of them also be green florals, chypre-esque, or even hint at leather, I'll be all over it. Oh--and iris, of course.

I know a lot of the names, and I used to get into my grandmother's Avon collection all the time when I was a little kid (in the 70s), but my memories are pretty dim. I'm not too hot on big orientals unless they're greenish or have a serious floral component.

Thanks, ZC!

I'll look into it!
 

Hazel5

Basenotes Plus
Basenotes Plus
Jul 25, 2016
Enjoying Al Rehab Choco Musk ($4 on Amazon) and Rhianna's Rebelle. (I too like Queen Latifah's Queen. A cheap and cheerful boozy.) Kyse Perfumes makes many that I love and the price is right. I'm currently crushing on Frollino Lavanda and Terreno Dolce. Smell Bent Gypsy (apricot and patchouli--somehow works), and Demeter's Pineapple (layering!) are two more cheapies I use.
 

HouseOfPhlegethon

Basenotes Plus
Basenotes Plus
Jan 3, 2017
Oh, noooo . . . not Jessica! I'm just kidding (sort of). It's soooo hard to separate the celeb from the perfume for me, but I keep hearing good things about FN. You and I need to catch up anyway, and I need to send you some stuff, so I'll get a PM to you and maybe we can work something out :).

Vicky Tiel is another name I see mentioned in the realm of underappreciated perfume. I need to look up the name and learn something, clearly.

Thanks, HoP~~

I'm not too keen on celub-scents either but, this one is dark and moody. I've been selling off a lot of my cheapies lately, that no longer impress. I am sure there are more I could think of - maybe later.
 

thediamondsea

Well-known member
Jan 10, 2016

thediamondsea

Well-known member
Jan 10, 2016
Enjoying Al Rehab Choco Musk ($4 on Amazon) and Rhianna's Rebelle. (I too like Queen Latifah's Queen. A cheap and cheerful boozy.) Kyse Perfumes makes many that I love and the price is right. I'm currently crushing on Frollino Lavanda and Terreno Dolce. Smell Bent Gypsy (apricot and patchouli--somehow works), and Demeter's Pineapple (layering!) are two more cheapies I use.

I hear a lot of chatter about that Al-Rehab. Kyse is a house about which I know absolutely nothing. Smell Bent, on the other hand, is one that I've been meaning to explore. I remember Demeter from waaaayyyy back in the day; once upon a time in the 90s, we sold it at Whole Foods, and I loved playing around with them, but their longevity is notoriously inconsistent. I've been tracking some of the recent reviews of their stuff here and elsewhere to find out which ones don't disappear in 5 minutes, because I think what they do is really cool, and it's a fascinating little rabbit hole of the perfume world that costs very little to play around in.
 

thediamondsea

Well-known member
Jan 10, 2016
I keep forgetting to add--I do have an ultimate goal here, to build a sharable Google Doc that keeps track of all of these, so the resource will be there for other people to use, because I know I'm not the only person in the world who has champagne taste on a (domestic) beer budget. I'll also be picking up lots of vintage minis during the next few months, although I'll probably hold off when the weather gets really bad here, because I don't want precious vintage stuff arriving on my doorstep all cooked.

And all of this has been precipitated not only by relative poverty, but also by the fact that I notice the fellas do a lot more reviews and exploration of relatively mainstream stuff than we typically do over here in the ladies' forum. I love this community, but groupthink is a natural occurrence when you interact with people a lot, and I think it's really important to break the walls down once in a while and try to see things with fresh eyes. I'm all for celebrating rare and precious materials and the people who source and create with them, but I'm also interested in the things that we've abandoned in our neverending quest for the shock of the new. So much craft and institutional memory went into perfumes that were created for now-obscure labels in the 70s/80s/90s/early 200s by classically trained people from the old school who are no longer on the scene, and I figure learning about these perfumes will be a master class in both perfume construction and perfume history.

I won't be abandoning niche, but I can't afford to live there at the moment, and for what I would pay for a single bottle of Areej le Dore, I could have 6 to 10 real classics made in the old style with the old materials, so it's a no-brainer, at least for now . ..
 

Hazel5

Basenotes Plus
Basenotes Plus
Jul 25, 2016
I keep forgetting to add--I do have an ultimate goal here, to build a sharable Google Doc that keeps track of all of these, so the resource will be there for other people to use, because I know I'm not the only person in the world who has champagne taste on a (domestic) beer budget. I'll also be picking up lots of vintage minis during the next few months, although I'll probably hold off when the weather gets really bad here, because I don't want precious vintage stuff arriving on my doorstep all cooked.

And all of this has been precipitated not only by relative poverty, but also by the fact that I notice the fellas do a lot more reviews and exploration of relatively mainstream stuff than we typically do over here in the ladies' forum. I love this community, but groupthink is a natural occurrence when you interact with people a lot, and I think it's really important to break the walls down once in a while and try to see things with fresh eyes. I'm all for celebrating rare and precious materials and the people who source and create with them, but I'm also interested in the things that we've abandoned in our neverending quest for the shock of the new. So much craft and institutional memory went into perfumes that were created for now-obscure labels in the 70s/80s/90s/early 200s by classically trained people from the old school who are no longer on the scene, and I figure learning about these perfumes will be a master class in both perfume construction and perfume history.

I won't be abandoning niche, but I can't afford to live there at the moment, and for what I would pay for a single bottle of Areej le Dore, I could have 6 to 10 real classics made in the old style with the old materials, so it's a no-brainer, at least for now . ..


Love the idea of a resource Google Doc. Thank you. This is an area I am totally interested in...."cheap and cheerful". There's a lot of info on Fragrantica. Articles like "Favorite Gourmands Under $10. Consider taking a peek?
 

Kotori

Basenotes Plus
Basenotes Plus
Aug 17, 2006
Some cheapies I’ve recently discovered thanks to some awesome Basenoters are:

-Dali Laguna
-Eau de Shalimar
-Tocade (which you know)
-Patou Sira des Indes

I already loved:
-Kenzo Flower
-Cheap & Chic I Love Love
-Hanae Mori EDT (pink butterflies)
-Gieffeffe by Gianfranco Ferre
-Amor Amor by Cacharel

Also worth a try:
-Elizabeth Arden Gardenia
-All those flankers of EL Green Tea (especially like yuzu)
 

thediamondsea

Well-known member
Jan 10, 2016
Some cheapies I’ve recently discovered thanks to some awesome Basenoters are:

-Dali Laguna
-Eau de Shalimar
-Tocade (which you know)
-Patou Sira des Indes

I already loved:
-Kenzo Flower
-Cheap & Chic I Love Love
-Hanae Mori EDT (pink butterflies)
-Gieffeffe by Gianfranco Ferre
-Amor Amor by Cacharel

Also worth a try:
-Elizabeth Arden Gardenia
-All those flankers of EL Green Tea (especially like yuzu)

There are actually a handful of those Salvador Dalis that I've been kinda curious about. I have and love Eau de Shalimar--it's a great one for summer nights when I want something with a little oomph but not in the usual run of florals and stuff. Patou Sira des Indes has been on my radar for a long time, but I just haven't gotten around to it. You can see, now, why I think it's time to dip back into the world of (relatively) mainstream stuff--I've just got too many gaps in my knowledge where things like these should go. I have also, believe it or not, never even smelled a Kenzo fragrance, at least on purpose, which is ridiculous--Flower seems like a no brainer given my proclivity for powder. The same holds for Moschino, a house that clearly has a sense of humor along with their design nous (I have a few of their scarves that I bought in Italy--their graphics are fun without sacrificing sophistication) (and I love the Windex packaging they've done with Fresh--it's more Andy Warhol than anything that Warhol's estate is currently licensing to CDG or whomever). Ferre is yet another house where I just have no idea where to even start, but I hear good things and I need to dig in there.

Also, you're the second or third person now in this thread who has mentioned Amor Amor, so I need to just get over whatever weird hangups I have about it and at least give it a spin. I really am intrigued by the what Cacharel was up to for that couple of decades after Loulou, because it seems like they were really trying to put out some distinctive fragrances.

Oh, and just for funsies--I'll take this chance to, once again, plump for some of the stuff from Jesus del Pozo. Ambar is a really interesting light greenish amber that reminds me of a sort of nouvelle version of Must de Cartier--less of everything, but still the same ballpark (the perfumer, whose name escapes me, has some other interesting work in her CV, too). In White (I know, I never shut up about it) is a Francis Kurkdjian fragrance that feels like a precursor to APOM but with a Maurice Roucel twist, a really great magnolia note that smoothes out the orange blossom and makes it a great choice for daytime wear in spring and early summer2. In Black was done by Christine Nagel, with her trademark dark fruit accord and incense. They're all clearly made made from modestly priced materials, so in some ways the composition is the star rather than the rare essences and whatnot. They get a lot of love among the young folks (or at least In Black does), but I find them all eminently wearable, and I think they're always worth a mention in a conversation about high-grade cheap thrills.
 

CuddleCat

It smells so good in here
Moderator
Basenotes Plus
Aug 20, 2009
My favourites are mostly ones you already have or are familiar with but I'll list them here anyway.

Green Tea by Elizabeth Arden
Stash by SJP
L'Agent by Agent Provocateur
Lolita Lempicka L'eau en Blanc
Lolita Lempicka Minuit Sonne (used to love the original EDP but it's not as good any more)

Queen & Queen of Hearts by Queen Latifah are very good.
Noa used to be very good but it's be tweaked & I don't like it as much any more.
The Jessica Simpson fragrances have been tweaked, too. I used to like Fancy Nights but it's been gutted/reformulated.
Some of the Taylor Swift fragrances are good. Taylor is similar to Burberry for Women but has more fruit (apricot) in it & Incredible Things hints at Burberry for Women but has a milky suede accord added to it.
Fifth Avenue by Elizabeth Arden is good cheapie, too.

Avon - I don't know if Occur is around anymore but my Mum used to wear it in the 70's, it was a leather chypre.

Ava Luxe is worth exploring if you haven't done so already.
 
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Suspended

Well-known member
Jul 28, 2012
When Angela Lansbury finally launches “Jessica” (Fletcher), I be buying that one for sure!

Ha ha ha. I always admired this woman’s appetite for socialising, despite someone being killed at every single gathering. It would have been my inclination to stay at home after the first two, maybe three.

So, “Jessica” smells amazing, but could you be bothered with every social event being marred by a murder?
 

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