Topic: Fragrance

Smell This ASAP: New McQueen Eau De Parfum

Published in: Fragrance, Product Reviews

mcqueen eau de parfum

The whole idea of fragrance commercials on TV is totally weird.

Isn’t it?

Companies desperately trying to get us interested in a scent through a medium where we can’t actually smell the perfume. There we are just eating our morning oatmeal while a supermodel rolls around on a beach for 30 seconds whispering about “Seduction happens on the sand…”

I guess it’s supposed to be metaphorical, you know, to capture the essence of what it feels like to wear the scent, and maybe then we’ll stop by the fragrance counter on our next trip to a department store, but I dunno…

It’s kind of like what’s happening with this blog post right now. 🙂

I suppose that I could just list the fragrance notes in this $115 bottle of McQueen Eau de Parfum, the pricey new fragrance by fancy fashion house Alexander McQueen (night-blooming flowers, sambac jasmine, tuberose and ylang ylang).

That would probably be more useful than these pictures…

mcqueen eau de parfum

mcqueen eau de parfum

mcqueen eau de parfum

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The Day in Beauty Vol. 25: Chanel’s New No. 5, and a Hello From Redding, California!

Published in: Chanel, Fragrance, Just For Fun, Product Reviews

chanel no 5 leau

The new Chanel No. 5 L’Eau

L’eau, the places, we’ll go! I’d love to take you to Paris or Hawaii, my friend…but for now, how about Redding, California? 🙂 That’s where I’m writing you from today.

Confession: I love me some Chanel, but I’m not really a Chanel No. 5 sort of girl. I’ve worn it many times over the years in the hopes that I’d fall in love with it because of its storied history and iconic past and, you know, because it’s Chanel, but it always felt like a pair of shoes that never quite fit me as perfectly as I’d like. Scent is such a personal thing, and No. 5 always seemed a little too serious for me.

I remember going to Filipino parties when I was young and being forced to hug aunties that I didn’t know, and they would always be wearing Chanel No. 5, and noisy jewelry, and they always had big hair, and when I hugged them, it would tickle my nose (the big hair AND Chanel No. 5).

No. 5 L’Eau is a new version coming to Chanel counters this fall — a reimagining of the scent — that will sit alongside the original, and I LOVE it.

With L’Eau, you definitely get the sense that you’re wearing No. 5, but it’s noticeably different. It still carries many of the original’s same notes, like May rose, but in a lighter elixir that seems more delicate and, dare I say, more fun.

Lemon, mandarin and orange stand front and center. To my nose, L’Eau seems airier than the original No. 5 and almost weightless, like a brush of tulle against naked skin.

Look for it this fall at Chanel counters. The 3.4-oz. bottle shown here is $132.

Enjoy the rest of your Saturday, babes. It will be a hot one here in Redding, as it always is this time of year (over 110 degrees!), so my big plan for the day will involve finding the coolest spot in an air conditioned room.

I checked in with Tabs this morning over Skype, and he and his favorite petsitter haven’t thrown any ragers yet. Let’s hope they don’t.

What do you have going on this weekend?

Your friendly neighborhood beauty addict,


The Day in Beauty, Vol. 20: Roses and Tea with Annick Goutal, and a Bouquet of Lovely Lavender

Published in: Fragrance, Just For Fun, Tocca


Hey, sweetie boo, happy Caturday! 🙂 It’s a sun-shiney day in Novato today, and I’m up bright and early because babylove is all about that rolling over lifestyle. She figured out how to roll over, and now it’s all she wants to do, so she got up at 6 for her morning meal and workout.

Do you have any plans for the Fourth? We’re thinking about driving up to Petaluma for the afternoon.

How was your week? Mine had a lot to do with scents, first with those TOCCA hair perfumes, and now with these two scents by Annick Goutal, which are kind of on the new-ish side.

Annick and I go waaaay back. I first started wearing her perfume back in 2005, I believe it was. It was on the whirlwind European backpacking adventure when El Hub proposed. We were in France at the time, and even with my broke-down high school French, I still managed to buy the biggest bottle of Des Lys perfume (which was limited edition), as well as a SECOND backup bottle. WHA?? I know. The power of beauty compelled me, even across international lines.

I like Annick Goutal’s scents because they’re usually light and refreshing. I mean, you know I love heavier, full-bodied scents in fall and winter, but lighter scents are really nice when it’s hot. When I’m perspiring, it seems to amplify whatever scent I’m wearing, and when I wear lighter scents, it doesn’t overtake the room…


Rose Pompon is like a peppery peony rose (super dainty and feminine), and L’Ile au Thé (Oooh! My fave!) smells like a lemony iced tea with dash of sugar.

So freakin’ good.

Speaking of scents, you might’ve noticed this beautiful bouquet of lavender in the background. I picked it up the other day at Trader Joe’s for $3.99.

I couldn’t wait to get it home, but as soon as I did get it home, I was like, “What the heck am I gonna do with this now?”


I put it in some water, but now I’m starting to rethink that strategy, because I have a lavender plant on my back deck, and it absolutely hates being overwatered, so now I’m thinking that I should take it out of the water and let it dry. I dunno… If you have any experience with lavender, please hook a cat lady up.


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Mist Me, Please, With the TOCCA Hair Fragrance Collection

Published in: Fragrance, Product Reviews, Tocca

tocca hair fragrance

I can imagine seeing these bottles laid out on a vanity in Sophia Coppola’s Marie Antoinette, all nestled amongst the feathers and powders and potions and other opulent things…

Every time I spray one of these TOCCA Capelli Profumatis fragrances, also known as the scents in the TOCCA Hair Fragrance Collection, which is available now exclusively at Anthropologie, into my hair, I can’t stop sniffing my strands!

I’m an unapologetic TOCCA super fan, and these hair mists are just as lovely and fresh as the other fragrances I love in the line.

You mist them on your hair for scent, obvs, but they’re also supposed to moisturize and add a subtle shine, too, which comes courtesy of coconut oil.

tocca hair fragrance

There are five $36 scents in the collection, all of which are inspired by fragrances in the TOCCA line, but they aren’t exact replicas, as TOCCA pulls on some of the notes to bring them to the forefront.

I think these versions smell a little lighter and a little fresher than the original TOCCA fragrances on which they’re based.

I can’t get enough of three of the five. Those are Liliana, which has notes of peach muguet; Collette (which is my FAVORITE, favorite, ahh!), which has notes of vanillla and sandalwood; and Stella, which has notes of Italian blood orange (which is different, ya know, than California blood orange…).

There’s also Cleopatra (grapefruit and cucumber) and Florence (bergamot and gardenia), but I haven’t smelled those two yet. I’m hoping and guessing they’re also lovely.

Official fragrance notes

  • Florence: an alluring combination of bergamot, crushed violet petals and blond wood (floral)
  • Cleopatra: rich amber patchouli blends royally with vanilla musk and hints of tuberose and grapefruit (spice)
  • Colette: a lush mix of bergamot, citrus, juniper and pink peppercorn mingle with florals, musk and woods (fresh)
  • Liliana: neroli, gardenia and faint peach (fresh)
  • Stella: a flirtatious combination of sheer musk, white freesia, blood orange and spicy lily (fresh)


I bet these would make great gifts for a girlfriend’s birthday or… Oh, I gotta remember this! — for Mother’s Day next year. Or maybe this Christmas, but I’m not always sure about giving perfumes as a present because they’re so personal, and because an entire bottle of perfume seems like such a huge commitment on the receiver’s end, ya know?

But a hair scent, I dunno… For some reason, that seems more like an accessory. Plus, TOCCA’s scents have been pretty universally pleasing, in my experience. I’ve never run into a girl who doesn’t like TOCCA.

tocca hair fragrance

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Blooming Lovely With Clean Blossom, a Rich White Floral Perfect for the Hot Summer Months Ahead

Published in: Clean, Fragrance, Guest Post

Clean Blossom Perfume

Mid-spritz. Clean Blossom Smells of a warm summer day.

Okay, you guys, I’ll admit it. I’m literally obsessed with perfume. I have upwards of 30 bottles, ranging from Stella to a few Diptyque, Jo Malone and even Serge Lutens, so it’s safe to say that in my time I’ve sniffed a fair few fumes (I dare you to say that three times fast).

One of my greatest pleasures in life is pairing a fragrance with my mood. There are two kinds of perfume lovers; those who find a cherished fragrance and don’t mess with success, preferring to repurchase bottle after bottle, and those who are a fragrance’s fair weather friend, adoring many and exhibiting fickle favoritism. I unquestionably fall into the latter category.

And, of course, as the trees are finally bursting forth from their skeletal winter forms and blooms are popping out of every garden bed it’s only fitting that I reach for a flourishing floral with a strong bouquet, and for that I have recently been drawn to Clean Blossom ($72 for 2.14 oz).

Clean Blossom Perfume

Beautiful and feminine Clean Blossom

Clean fragrances have been available for over a decade, all owing their popularity to the very first (unsurprisingly entitled Clean), which was said to have been inspired by the beauty in a bar of soap. Since the first smash hit, Clean has released a bevy of “spin-offs” all inspired by simple fragrant pleasures: skin, linen, laundry and rain.

Blossom is the latest release in the deceptively simple range. To my nose it smells of heavy white floral blossoms on a hot summer day. There is a definite dewiness that makes me think of the sunny early morning hours, when the plants are still damp and the smell of night mingles with dawn. Top notes of neroli, lilac and freesia account for the heavy floral burst. Supported by middle notes of orange blossom, lily and magnolia, it is unquestionable that white floral reigns supreme as the chief impression left by Clean Blossom. Musky cottonwood and sandalwood serve as base notes and account for the subtle yet unmistakable deep scent of night that lingers in the floral air.

It’s poetic, and I adore it.

Perfume tells a story, so I always do my best to look up the perfumer’s inspiration. Sephora often provides this information, and I find it provides insight and context into the selected elixir of top, middle and bottom notes:

“Blossom is based on one of my favorite flowers, neroli (orange blossom). Its distinctive aroma fills the air of my childhood places—the south of France, the French Riviera, and the Italian Coast—as well as my current home in Arizona. The name ‘neroli’ is a tribute to Princess Nerola, who made this flower essence famous by using it as a perfume at the end of the 17th century.”

— Claude Dir, master perfumer at Mane and the creator of Clean Blossom

Clean Blossom Perfume

A blooming spring and summer floral: Clean Blossom

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