I just turned 60, and for the past 40 years my perfume habit has been one dab of No. 5 on my neck for special occasions. Yeah, I know -- boring. I am ready for a change.
I have a big reunion coming up this summer and with it comes a perfume goal. I will be seeing the only guy who ever dumped me and when I hug him hello, I want him to think: what was I thinking? I can take care of the looking good part. Can you help me with the smelling good part?
I do not like anything really sweet, fruity, or that smells too bright or clean. I used to use a sandalwood shower gel I liked by Caswell Massey or maybe it was Crabtree and Evelyn or...someone, but I ran out and couldn't remember who made it.
I like musk too, but not the overpowering kind. I want to tread the fine line between sexy and slutty.... I'd like to provoke the reaction: is that perfume or does she just smell that good naturally?
I have been sniffing some things lately that smell too sweet or give me a headache (omg, La Vie est Belle! Just godawful on both those counts), or are generic (J'Adore), or can be smelled from 20 paces!
Can you help me?
Julie, I have a feeling that in your case, the perfume will merely be the icing on the cake -- and oh, what a cake! But let's roll up our sleeves and get forensic.
Off the top of my head, my thought is to keep you with Chanel and sandalwood, and direct you to the pure parfum version of Bois des Îles. It's warm, pulsing, insinuating, sensuous, rich. (Bois des Îles EDP will do the trick, too, it's just that applying and wearing the parfum, with its crystal stopper and special depth, feels more "special occasion".)
I really love this concept for you, and am tempted to stop right here. But I just had a brainwave.
It's Escentric Molecules Molecule 01. Molecule 01 is all the rage with modish fumies, and here's why: it's a subtle yet incredibly persistent sandalwood/cedarwood/musk haze that glows in the air around wearer and smeller alike.
It's legendary as the scent that is guaranteed to make people around you cry out in helpless paroxysms of ecstasy, "Who smells so GOOD?" and then abandon their former lives as they dedicate themselves to following you around forever. (I feel that its reputation is more than a tad hyperbolic, but there's no denying that it's a very pleasing smell.)
It's creator, Geza Schoen, has this to say:
You don’t want to get on someone’s nerves with your scent. You want them to come closer and undress you instantly, because of it.Reading between the lines, Julie, I think that's the effect you're angling for.
Now, I've just zinged between beplushed opulence and linear minimalism with my Chanel-to-Escentric Molecules wrinkle in time. The first is undoubtedly a perfume, while the second registers more as what Mr. Schoen calls "a feeling".
But there is a connection between the two (sandalwood and musk), and both will suit your needs. Read my review of Molecule 01 here to find out more.
That's my tuppence-worth. And now KP Smells readers, possessed as they are of fine sensibilities, will surely chime in with winning suggestions.
Let's make Julie the belle of the reunion ball, y'all!