You probably thought that Mile High 38 from Parle Moi de Parfum was just another pineapple-centric scent. Ever since that other popular pineapple scent got famous, it has inspired a lot of copycats. But this house is not a ‘follower,’ and has unique ideas with familiar themes. You get a different kind of pineapple in Mile High 38.
It’s a dark pineapple. It’s not the Sunny Dole juice kind. It is brooding, melancholy, and it is right up my alley. Paired instantly with immortelle, it feels a little musky, like it has been sitting in a box for a while.
The patchouli then comes in which makes it a lot earthy. The oineapple is still there, still ripe and juicy, but the effect is not beachy and umbrellas, but more night drink at a bar. I like it a lot, as it is very unique, and it is a perfume that will make you think and ponder.
Back before the pandemic hit, Macy’s sent me a small box of samples, mostly department store brands. I have been slowly sampling them, and I am almost finished. One of the scents in there is CK Everyone, which is a flanker of CK One. I used tp douse myself in CK One back in the day, so I was kind of looking forward to this – I thought, if for anything, it might remind me of that classic scent (and my memories of them)
Well, surprise, but this has none of the charm of the original. What do we get? A basic generic cedar-ish scent. I say ish because the cedar here smells so synthetic. There is a quick orange blast in the opening, but blink and it’s gone, and then you get the aquatic notes that dilute whatever character that orange brought. Seriously, I keep on sniffing it to see if there is any depth to the scent, but nada. Not really a scrubber but devoid of any artistry.
Another day, another department store mens fragrance to try. I have to say, though, that I have not smelled Bad Boy by Carolina Herrera yet, and I already want the bottle – look at it, it is like a lightning bolt squared with a stapler. The women’s version is a studded high heel, and I am guessing the bottle is supposed to be some kind of men’s shoe, and it’s stunning.
The scent? It’s not too bad. I actually like CH scents, they are. little different than most. The initial blast of Bad Boy is very familiar – the ‘fresh; bergamot woodsy accord, but as it settles down, it gets just a little bit more gourmand-y – a chocolate/coco note thats’ dark and sweet. It’s not the most unique scent, but it’s at least not the same old thing that you get everywhere. Will I wear it? I imagine it wouldn’t be the worst thing in the world for colder temperature months. The bottle, though, is luring me…
I’ve seen Wonderlust everywhere (it’s from 2016) but I only tried it now because Macy’s sent me a sample in the mail. I never paid attention to it, probably because I thought it would be one of those generic fruity florals that are a dime a dozen at the malls. But I was pleasantly surprised by this. It’s by no means a treasure – the notes feel plastic – but it is kind of different. The idea, I read, is that is that they wanted to recreate “almond milk blended with a spicy creamy floral.” The almond note is nice, and I wish it was more almond-y, but blended with the heliotrope made it less threatening. The middle and base notes are more basic – there’s that generic sandalwood, but the added benzoine gives it kind of a niche-y edge. On a hot summer day like today it felt just a tad heavy, but nit unpleasantly so. And I would wear this – probably more to the office and on weekend mornings, but I wouldn’t be opposed, you know?
On the cardboard thingie holding my sample of Mont Blanc’s ‘Explorer,’ there is a blurb describing the scent. The copy says: ” Mont blanc Explorer is an invitation to a fantastic journey, an irresistible call to adventure.’ Sounds good, right? Since we cannot travel right now, sounds like this is the next best thing, right? So I spritz and I wait for magic to happen. Explorer has notes of Italian Bergamot and Haitian Veitver, and Patchouli from Sulawesi. then how come it smells like I went to a department store in the Valley? This is a freshie, and sure that’s fine, bit it doesn’t take me anywhere. There’s is nothing terribly wrong with this scent – it has nice longevity and sillage – but you kind of have to ask – what differentiates it? I read on Fragrantica that three – count em, three – noses collaborated on this scent. It smells so familiar and generic, and boring that they need not have bothered.
I think the Southern California June gloom may finally be over, and we are getting some warm weather now. I welcome it, and my old age has made me appreciate hot weather a lot more, as I sometimes feel I am always freezing. It also made me reach out this morning for Tom Ford’s Mandarino de Amalfi. I remember when I used to have a big trip every year, and obviously that’s not happening this year. But I can spritz and feel like I am at the Amalfi Coast, right? Mandarino de Amalfi makes me feel like that. Even though it is really just your basic cologne, it has some notes that give it heft and personality. The grapefruit, lemon, and basil mix make it a little different, and it has some slightly bitter elements. There is a bit of jasmine in my skin that keeps it interesting for me, and the dry down is a citrus floral white musk. I can close my eyes and feel like I am in Positano, and for now, that’s good enough.
I don’t know what I was expecting when I tried a sample of Polo Deep Blue. Maybe I had high hopes because once upon a time, decades ago, I wore the original Polo green bottle almost everyday. But I can’t remember the last time a Polo fragrance impressed me – I think I like the coffee note in Polo Red but that’s about it. Polo Deep Blue is exactly what you think if would be – an aquatic aromatic fragrance. I see the top notes listed as mango ang grapefruit, and if they were there they must have been fleeting because what I get here is just the boring middle notes – generic woodsy citrusy notes that are everywhere in designers’ men fragrance. They are so basic and interchangeable, and this smells like any other mens fragrance out there. This has no unique personality whatsoever. I gotta say, though, it is strong – the sillage is enormous – I kind of felt bad for my Uber driver this morning.
For me, L’Artisan Parfemeur *was* niche, before niche exploded. When I first discovered it more than a decade ago, the idea of the brand seemed decadent and wild, and I devoured everything about it. I started collecting as much as I can – Dzing! will always have a place in my wardrobe – and maybe I don’t pay as much attention to it now as I should I still have tons of their stuff (some in their old original bottles) but I find I never reach for them. Last year, when they had their annual sale, they were almost giving away Bucoliques de Provence. I grabbed it, without really knowing anything about it. I assumed it was a floral, based on the label on the bottle.
So when I finally got it and opened it, I spritzed. My first reaction? It was very old school L’Artisan. It is nice and soft, and very unique. It envelopes you. I read later that it is a tribute to Provence, so obviously this would have lavender. But it is not the barber shop lavender we know – this is quite sharp. It is enhanced by a dry paper-y iris, and the combination is exquisite. There is some suede to round it up, giving this light floral heft – this one does not go away quickly.
My verdict – I like it a lot. I wonder how it projects, though. I feel it’s a skin scent, so intimate and personal, but i bet it lingers. It’s also probably discontinued, so I should savor it.
Roja Elysium, it cannot be denied, is a great scent. It’s an aromatic citrus, and the grapefruit heart is very appealing. And if you are one of those people who likes their scent fresh and ‘masculine’ smelling, then this one is definitely for you. The quality of the fragrance is stellar, and on my skin, it’s a nice skin scent, quiet but effective.
But it’s not for me, for a couple of different reasons. First, the price is astronomical. Second, I don’t see anything unique in here that warrants that price. I can think of ten other masculine-leaning fragrances at my local Macy’s that would not be dissimilar to this scent. And I am a practical Virgo, so if I were to bang the buck for anything, it better knock my socks off.
Anyone who knows me also knows that I love rose scents, so it should be a given that I would like Lush’s Rose Jam. And I do. I remember as time when this used to be seasonal, that Lush only sells these during winter time. But I think that has changed now, and they sell it year round. I remember hoarding the shower gels, and using them sparingly, saving them for times when I would want to feel especially..lush. But to be honest, it’s been a while since I have had the shower gel (making mental note to buy some) until IK realized that I had a generous decant of the perfume in my stash. I don’t even remember how I got this – I remember someone gifting it to me. So on a nice day like today I figured why not wear it?
And it’s as beautiful as I remember it. The best thing about ‘Rose Jam’ is the sticky jammy rose. It’s nice and heavy, with hints of vanilla and lemon. And it is so yummy that you may feel like spreading it over toast. From Lush’s website: “Every year, Lush buyers visit the Turkish farm where our roses are harvested and enjoy a massive feast, complete with the matriarch’s homemade rose jam”. I think that description is perfect!