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Category Archives: Fragrances
Spring is in the air! And with the weather now slowly warming up, the sun shining and the trees in blossom, it means I also start changing up the fragrances I wear during the day. Instead of choosing stronger and warmer fragrances, I am now loving more fresh and floral perfumes. A new addition to my (ever growing) fragrance collection is the just launched perfume by Elie Saab L’Eau Couture.
L’Eau Couture was inspired by the designers Ready-to-Wear 2014 Spring/Summer collection, in which delicate fabrics as light as petals chisel a magical fusion between woman and nature. It’s all about capturing blossoming in an urban springtime setting. Light, dreamy with a feel of couture is what Elie Saab has always succeeded in portraying to his public and the same applies to this new perfume.
“We started thinking about how we can say spring in the city. We wanted to have a l’eau, but a l’eau that is balanced with something that is really linked to a fashion DNA, which is the reason why we created L’Eau Couture. It is really the encounter between the l’eau segment and the couture universe.” Francis Kurkdjian
Elie Saab L’Eau Couture is a soft almondy floral fragrance that also includes delicate notes of bergamot, rose, lemon, orange blossom, crisp green almond and vanilla infusion. This fragrance totally embodies spring to me because it is fresh and crisp but still has a level of sensuality and sophistication. Elie Saab Le Parfum L’Eau Couture is now available in 30, 50 and 90 ml Eau de Toilette with prices ranging from £31 – £66.
Do you start changing your perfumes as the weather heats up too?
Balmain, the Parisian fashion house, are launching a brand new fragrance for women this February called ‘Extatic’. Balmain creative director Olivier Rousteing designs with a very specific woman in mind and, when it came to their latest fragrance, that woman was the focus once more.
“Extatic is the perfect reflection of Balmain fashion: sexy, glamorous, daring… It’s like one of our gowns: able to reveal the sensuality of the woman who wears it.”
Balmain Extatic is a feminine and sparkling fragrance full of daring and sensuality. Extatic opens with a twinkling floral fruity note of nashi pear, rose and osmanthus. It also contains chocolate-scented orchid, iris and night jasmine. And the scent ends with notes of amyris, cashmere wood and a touch of Barenia leather, a nod to the flagship material of the Balmain wardrobe.
I like the simple black and gold design of the bottle – it’s very classic and feels very Balmain. What I really like about this fragrance is that it is soft and feminine enough to wear during the day but also sexy and glamourous enough to carry you through into a night out.
Extatic Eau De Parfum available in 90ml, 60ml and 40ml & priced from £36 / €42. Balmain Extatic Eau de Parfum will be available exclusively at Harrods from 20th January 2014, then at selected department stores nationwide from the 3rd of February 2014.
As part of her role as Ambassador for BOSS JOUR Pour Femme Gwyneth Paltrow recently opened up about her love for the festive seasons and talked all things Christmas; including food, present shopping and styling tips!
Speaking about her Christmas Day rituals Gwyneth Paltrow said: ‘Our Christmas rituals are pretty much the same every year; it’s basically trying to keep the children in bed until at least 7am! Father Christmas always leaves a stocking at the end of their bed, which is great because then they wake up and they have lots of little bits to unwrap. Then they wake us up and they just go to town on the present opening. I do a lot of the cooking before Christmas but then I usually spend a lot of Christmas cooking too. All the smells, all of the mulled wine, all of the trimmings for the turkey. We like to have all the family around. A very traditional Christmas.’
Self-confessed ‘planner’ Gwyneth says she begins her Christmas shopping at least 2 months before because she likes to get things personalised but also admits that ‘men are really hard to shop for, much harder than women. Probably my husband, my brother, my husband’s brothers – they’re usually the hardest.’
A popular Christmas present for friends or family is a fragrance and this is also a regular item on Gwyneth’s Christmas shopping list ‘I think it’s nice to buy a fragrance that they’ve never tried, or buy them their favourite. It’s a luxury gift, it’s personal and it’s always wonderful to get perfume. I think it’s a nice time to try something new. But for people who are really married to their scent it’s also a really good time to give them that.’
Gwyneth does most of the cooking for the Christmas festivities and even though Gwyneth is well known for her uber-healthy eating habits, it is nice to see she also loves indulging at Christmas time ‘our Christmas dinner is very traditional – turkey, stuffing, gravy, sweet potatoes, pumpkin pie, pecan pie.
When it comes to her favourite Christmas party outfit style queen Gwyneth says ‘I always feel like I end up wearing something black. I have a number of black jumpsuits that are always very easy because then you don’t have to think about much else’ and she thinks ‘it’s a good idea to have a red lip at Christmas but I’m not very good at doing that so I usually just end up looking very natural.’
Gwyneth remains one of my top one of my favourite style/celeb crushes and as always she looks flawless in this campaign video for BOSS Jour Pour Femme. I personally really like both the BOSS Pour Femme fragrances. You can read my original reviews of BOSS Nuit here and BOSS Jour here.
Boss Jour Pour Femme is available in stores nationwide, priced from £35 (link) or perhaps a good present idea this Christmas could be the gift set which is available from Boots.com here. Have you tried one of the BOSS Pour Femme Fragrances yet?
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Back in September I was invited to HIX at Selfridges to get an exclusive first sniff at the Reiss fragrances for him and her! British Fashion House Reiss is one of my favourite top-end high street brands because of their their beautiful but affordable luxury clothing and accessories.
Having recently celebrated 40 years, founder and MD David Reiss felt now was time to branch out into the beauty industry starting with two debut fragrances – Reiss Grey Flower for Women and Reiss Black Oudh for Men. Both fragrances are modern classic scents with unique formulations featuring hand-picked ingredients that represent style, design and elegance, all at the heart of Reiss’ DNA.
Ingredients were handpicked by David together with award winning perfume designer Azzi Glasser to create unique scents. When I was at the launch at Selfridges I got to meet the ‘nose’ Azzi Glasser herself, who told us she’d actually spent nearly four years perfecting these two fragrances.
“Reiss has an artisan approach to clothes, the attention to detail is phenomenal and this is something that I immediately connected with. David [Reiss] has wanted to launch fragrances for years but he was adamant that they should be sexy and smell expensive. Luxury was key.” Azzi Glasser
Black Oudh for Men is an alluring and enticing fragrance opening with fresh aromatic top notes of Laurel Leaf and green Cypress, descending into the deepest Heart accord of Sequoia Wood, Clary Sage and Vetiver. Finally Black Oudh, Black Musk and Amber at the base make this a magnetic and alluring fragrance.
Azzi feels that a fragrance has to encapsulate a moment, which could be a mood or even something more tangible. About Black Oudh she said; “I was inspired by a man’s neck. That warm smell when he wakes up. It’s a little dewy. Very masculine and unique”.
Grey Flower for Women is a seductive, mysterious and deeply addictive fragrance. The Armoise and Pimento Berry balance the seductive centre of Sequoia Wood, Jasmine Noir and Cocoa Leaf, followed by the velvety warmth of an addictive base of skin musks, Olibanum, Amber Crystals and Patchouli and Baies leaving an unforgettable scent.
“Grey Flower gets its name from hydrangeas which have a beautiful greyness to them if you look closely. The idea was to go deep into the heart of the scents. But not towards florals, we wanted something richer, sexier”. - Azzi Glasser
I was very surprised with these two Reiss fragrances as they are definitely not anything commercial. They avoided anything floral and made a bold statement instead by going for deep, seductive base notes. They might not be for everyone but that what gives them an edge and makes Reiss stand out against the standard high street competition.
Reiss Grey Flower for Women EDP 100ml - £49.00, 50ml – £35.00 and 30ml – £25.00.
Reiss Black Oudh for Men EDP 100ml - £49.00, 50ml – £35.00.
The Reiss Fragrances are available online at www.reiss.com and at Reiss stores nationwide. Plus from Wednesday 4th December until Monday 16th December Reiss is offering a personalised engraving service (£5) at www.reiss.com/parfums. Could make a nice Christmas gift?
Have you tried these new fragrances yet?
You might not know who Terry de Gunzburg is, but if you are at all into your cosmetics, then you are bound to have heard of her famous creations. Terry used to be the Creative Director of YSL Beauté, and while she was there, one of her most well known beauty products inventions was the ‘Touche Eclat’ concealer/highlighter pen. After leaving YSL in 1998 she decided to start her own make-up line called By Terry which focusses luxurious, high quality couture make up.
Her latest venture, to add to her already impressive resume, is her debut collection of 5 perfumes launched under the brand name “Terry de Gunzburg” rather than “By Terry”. The fragrance project has been a long time in the making for Terry de Gunzburg, with her main source of inspiration being the tradition of great French perfumes; citing fragrances like Arpège de Lanvin, Mitsouko de Guerlain, Bal à Versailles or Miss Dior (the original). Her five haute-couture perfume collection launced in September and I was very lucky to get to meet Terry de Gunzberg in person to talk me through the different scents.
On her new collection Terry said;
“It has taken me ten years to achieve this collection of ‘personified’ scents. I had to progress slowly in order to learn and understand about essences that felt right, which was a humbling yet enriching experience. I had to ignore the dos and don’ts imposed by trends or by a commercial brief. Free from any restrictions, I have followed my instinct to create pure, original and extravagantly high-quality fragrances.”
The Terry de Gunzburg Fragrance collection contains the following five Eau de Parfums and see below their the descriptions from the press release;
“Irresistible, delicious and incredibly sensual.” Thrillingly tempting, Flagrant Délice is infused with almond milk and sun-ripened fig. An alluring combination of modern materials with natural ingredients create a rich blend. Instantly, the bitter almond essence gives a carnal hint with notes of bergamot and mandarin giving balance. In the heart, Mediterranean fig, with vegetal and milky accents enriched with red currants melting in tonka beans and white musk creates an enveloping magnetism.
“A day dream to the most irresistible destination: luxury and sensuality.” Restrained when it comes to extractions and other distillations, the gardenia gives little away. A tenacious floral ensemble, with Egyptian jasmin and Indian Sambac jasmin together with essence of rose and its absolute, a touch of orange blossom, a trail of ylang ylang and a hint of Sri Lanka cinnamon become a dream of gardenia.
“A colourful scent with a passionate temperament that dislikes shades or grey and encourages emotion.” Parti Pris delivers its ‘Haute Féminité’ in seconds. Instantly recognisable, the tuberose is exquisite and compelling, revealing its power of seduction in a precious floral bouquet. The sweet, absolute orange blossom melts into the richness of the absolute Turkish rose together with a hint of an exceptional ylang ylang, created exclusively by the Maison Robertet. At the base, a surprising vintage accord through smoked vetiver and sandalwood together with Vanilla and Tolu balm. Incense, Turkish tobacco absolute, rockrose and labdanum echo ancient perfume accords. The resulting scent is the aura of chicness swathed in silk.
“Pure seduction, Ombe Mecure is an enchanting blend of iris and violet, which plunges us into the darkness of the night.” Noble, powdery, feminine and rare, the scent unveils all the facets of a delicious woody iris. Formulated with the purest iris ‘butter’, this olfactive treat flirts furtively with a few petals of rose, ylang ylang and jasmine. This subtle blending gives it softness with the darkness of the patchouli forming the spine of this fragrant composition. Intense, powerful and purring on the skin just like a feline, it reveals camphor-like vapours and a carnal instinct recalling mythical blends of the perfume world. Vanilla, with a base of spicy benzoin, the iris in fusion with the patchouli reveals more femininity. This blend with accents of violet, reminiscent of loose powder, red lipstick and of the classic chypre blends, is especially designed for the passionate characters.
Vibrant and sparkling, the fragrance opens a refreshing symphony of citrus notes. The bitterness of grapefruit, the blood orange zest and bergamot: awakening the heart, fresh as jasmine water, it is contagiously chic. With facets of roses and orange blossoms, it seems oxygenated, like fresh air. Indian sambac jasmine, with honeyed tones gives warmth together with orange blossom absolute, spices and dry woods. Muscat, clove and cedarwood bring this contemporary composition to life. A distinctively elegant fragrance with a luminously vibrant bouquet.
“I explored the rarest ingredients of the perfumery world for my first fragrance collection. An audacious alchemy between purity and intensity; extremes and simplicity. Fascinating accords of exclusive notes to enhance the skin and captivate the soul” Terry de Gunzberg.
After getting to smell all the different fragrances, I had to pick a favourite, which turned actually out to be rather tricky! My clear favourites were the Flagrant Delice, which is very pretty but modern because of the milky almond and fig notes and the Reve Opulant which is very much a sweet floral (Gardenia) scent but when paired with jasmine, rose and even cinnamon it makes it a very fresh, yet warm and contemporay fragrance.
I couldn’t help being drawn back to Reve Opulant so I decided that was the most ‘me’ of the Terry de Gunzburg fragrance collection. It was really interesting to try all the different scents with a group of people because others were not so much into the florals and chose more powerful fragrances like the Ombre Mecure and Parti Pris. It really shows how fragrances are such a personal thing!
I have been wearing Reve Opulent a lot recently and am secretly a little addicted to it. It’s quite different to my usual favourites perfumes but there’s something classic, elegant and feline yet interesting about it, that I just can’t seem to get enough of! I also love the design of the bottle. It combines infinite roundness with sharp cubic shapes making it sleek, traditional and luxurious.
This is me with the lovely Terry de Gunzburg in London at the launch of her perfume collection art John Lewis. She was very inspiring to talk to and so kind and friendly – it was a true honour to meet someone so well respected in the cosmetics world.
Have you spotted or tried this new fragrance collection yet? I definitely recommend giving it a sniff next time you are at your local department store.