Fragrance Reviews

Bond I Love NY for Holidays Fragrance Review

bond-no-9-i-love-ny-for-holidays* Fruity kick for the intro with berries, plum, and a sweet citrus.

* The berries stick around and are joined by a melange of florals.

* Just as we say fruit salad for a generic, indistinct jumble of fruit smells – ‘melange of florals’ would be my polite way of saying floral salad.

* The florals last for a couple of hours before fading a bit.

* The base is described as vanilla gelato and sensual musk.  Let’s skip the fancy talk and just say the base is vanilla and amber with a light musk in the mix.

Summary:  I haven’t been that impressed with the recent Bond No 9 fragrances (Parfumista Ave and NY musk) but for some reason the I Love NY scents seem to work better on me (and are at a cheaper price point).  I don’t get the holidays from this scent but that is not necessarily a bad thing – because if it was pine, cinnamon and fruitcake – the scent would be TOO specific to be worn for the holidays.  As it is, it doesn’t stand out from many of the designer fruity floral scents that dominate department store scents, but since it’s at a similar price point, has the iconic I Love NY logo on the bottle, and says “holidays” – it makes an obvious gift for anyone on your holiday list.  The compliment I want to pay it is that it is inoffensive and universal – but that sounds backhanded,  which isn’t my intention.  Longevity is good for an EDP, lasting about 8 hours on my skin before it turns into a subtle skin scent.

Other opinions:

Ca Fleure Bon
Man Loves Cologne

Bond I Love NY for the Holidays is available at Sephora, Nordstrom, Saks 5th Avenue and the Bond No 9 Website.

Disclaimer: Sample provided by department store. Picture courtesy of Sephora.

Fragrance Reviews Mainstream Monday

Jay Z Gold Fragrance Review (MAINSTREAM MONDAY)

* Gold starts off with a loud blast of sweet fruits (a mix of berries and citrus) and spice.

* Initial projection is quite loud and stays strong for about 30 minutes.

* Then the scent fades really quickly into a weak nondescript mix of woods, amber and vanilla.

* Within two hours, you can barely smell it.

SUMMARY:  When I first smelled Jay-Z Gold, I thought, “Wow, this is a knock off of One Million.” Wearing the two side-by-side, I realize that I was only partially right. Jay-Z is incredibly similar to One Million for 30 minutes.. and while One Million keeps projecting its strong synthetic and narcotic sweet fruity essences, Gold devolves into an emasculated, cheap, generic, woody amber musk skin scent. Two hours later, Gold is barely noticeable – as if the fake veneer (gold plating) has rusted away and you are left with little to show for what you paid. In case you are looking for an example of everything that is wrong with top-loaded celebrity fragrances, look no further than Jay Z.

Disclaimer: Sample came from a Nordstrom’s department store. Image courtesy of Nordstrom website.

Fragrance Reviews

M Micallef Rouge No. 2  Fragrance Review

* The spicy fruity opening starts with juicy red fruit, accented with clove.

* This is a statement scent and it starts out very powerful.

* The spice of the clove introduces a lush floral arrangement with violets and jasmine.

* The fruity sweetness transforms into an oriental/vanilla that keeps the flowers juicy (like in the opening).

* That oriental vanilla stays present and contrasts the animalic musk of the base.

Summary:  If you are looking for a scent that transforms over time, Rouge No. 2 will give you that journey.  It literally goes from fruit to flowers to animal.  While it’s listed as a feminine fragrance, a guy can totally rock this one and it would be quite sexy. Like I said in my review of Rouge No. 1, it’s the intensity and the mood.  While No. 1 is soft and plush, No. 2 is more boisterous and in your face.  It’s definitely not office-friendly, and I would venture to say this is one of the edgier scents of the Micallef line.  If you are looking for a scent that is animalic and a bit dirty but not over the top skanky, this is definitely worth a test.  Longevity is excellent with the base lasting well past 10 hours.

Other opinions:

Perfume Shrine
Ca Fleure Bon
Best Things in Beauty
Olfactoria’s Travels

M Micallef fragrances are available through Lucky Scent and Osswald.

Disclaimer: Sample provided by publicist for review. Image courtesy of Lucky Scent.

Fragrance Reviews

Tom Ford Private Blend Fleur de Chine Fragrance Review


* Surprisingly, Fleur De Chine starts with a bouquet of flowers mixed together.  Try as I might, I can’t ID the individual flowers aside from a light rose.

* This is a compliment that’s going to sound like a dis.  It smells like really expensive, ultraluxurious shampoo.

* The flowers stay present as fruit and tea notes come forward.  

* The middle section conjures images of a polite tea date, with fresh flowers and juicy fruit.

* Base notes of amber and cedar come in as the scent becomes quite sheer.

Summary: If Fleur de Chine was a person, she would be the very proper lady who is always dressed impeccably with perfect manners – very classy and appropriate.  I went to Vanderbilt for college and this reminds me of the girls who wore Laura Ashley to football dates.  When they grew up to be proper Southern women in the Junior League, Fleur de Chine could be their scent.  Fleur de Chine isn’t bad, its just not amazing or mind-blowing or worth the $210 price tag for 50ml.  However, if you are looking to splurge for your mom, this would be a safe scent that they would enjoy.  

Other opinions:

Best Things in Beauty



Ca Fleure Bon

The Candy Perfume Boy

Tom Ford Private Blend fragrances are available at Saks 5th Avenue and Neiman Marcus.

Disclaimer: Sample provided by sales associate for review. Image courtesy of Neiman Marcus.