I need your help. I need an everyday perfume that suits me. I'm 18 years old and really shy, but I'm also intelligent with an admittedly sharp tongue. I live with my nose in books like Lolita and Alice in Wonderland, and I love indie music, bohemian clothes, nature and everything sultry, whimsical, and nostalgic. I seem to come off as innocent, but I curse like a sailor and have wanderlust like a motherf**ker. I love leather, sunshine, the woods, red lipstick, and vintage clothes.
Hi Shelby -- I some of my younger self in your salty/sweet self-description! Let's hook you up with some whimsical and wanderlustful choices. Lolita and Alice are heroines whose innocence is a powerful weapon, who don't shy away from breaking taboos. Your description also reminds me of the character Sally Bowles in Cabaret, played so deliciously quixotically by a 26-year-old Liza Minnelli.
Juliette Has a Gun Lady Vengeance hits a lot of your beats: it's a sweet fan dancer of a perfume, a smokey, caramelized rose that would work well with vintage clothes and your innocent aura. I've been quite impressed with Guerlain Shalimar Parfum Initial L'Eau, which is drier (less sweet) than its predecessor Parfum Initial, and presents a scaled-back but still coherent rendition of flapper fave Shalimar. Parfum Initial L'Eau will underscore your red lipsticked boho babeness while referencing the risque twenties.
Let's talk about leather, the woods, and all things off the beaten track. I like Christian Dior Bois d'Argent, with its mysterious myrrh and warm woods. It's indie but friendly. This is not exactly a budget option, so you could always scale back a bit and investigate Agent Provocateur L'Agent, which is a bewitching blend of tropical flowers, dark fruits and almost edible leather. It's complex but still playful, and would work just fine on a playfully complex young woman. (I happen to know that the inspiration for L'Agent is Helena Bonham Carter's personal bespoke perfume, and HBC fits your adjective list to a "T".)
Hmm...wanderlust. Hermès Eau des Merveilles just popped into my head: an amber/orange seashore, the departure point for all of your future adventures. Bond No. 9 Chinatown suggests a sensation-packed excursion to a My Little Pony version of Mott Street. And how about a sophisticated tropical trip via Tom Ford Voile de Fleur (officially discontinued, but still available online)? It's a diva-lite version of Robert Piguet Fracas, and the heady gardenia would satisfy your sultry/nostalgia needs.
Fumies, what would you recommend for salty/sweet Shelby?