Perfume Chat Room, February 18

Perfume Chat Room, February 18

Welcome back to the weekly Perfume Chat Room, perfumistas! I envision this chat room as a weekly drop-in spot online, where readers may ask questions, suggest fragrances, tell others their SOTD, comment on new releases or old favorites, and respond to each other. The perennial theme is fragrance, but we can interpret that broadly. This is meant to be a kind space, so please try not to give or take offense, and let’s all agree to disagree when opinions differ. In fragrance as in life, your mileage may vary! YMMV.

Today is Friday, February 18, and I am the happy recipient of a full bottle of Maison Lancome’s Peut-Etre, a Valentine’s “gift” from my lovely husband. I put “gift” in quotation marks because, like many of us, I chose and ordered the fragrance so HE could give it to ME. He is a patient, lovely man! He also surprised me with a beautiful orchid plant; I made him a fancy dinner that included filet mignon and an excellent bottle of red wine. This may be the first Valentine’s Day we’ve had alone together since becoming parents. In 2020, we still had one child living at home; and in 2021, we had all three children living at home due to the pandemic!

Today, though, I’m wearing Maison Christian Dior’s Jasmin des Anges, from a decant that came in my monthly scent subscription. It’s really pretty! I’m a bit cautious around white flower scents, but this one is light and lovely. It has notes of peach, apricot, and osmanthus with the jasmine, which keep it fresh and airy. It reminds me a bit of a light white wine, even prosecco, but more floral.

The name of the fragrance reminded me that there is a lovely tropical jasmine called “Angel Wings jasmine”, or Jasminum nitidum, which then reminded me of this wonderful art project called the Global Angel Wings Project, by Colette Miller. She started it in Los Angeles, the “City of Angels”, with a street mural of painted angel wings, where passers-by could pose in front as if they themselves had sprouted wings. She has now painted angel wings all around the globe.

Painting of angel wings above water
Angel wings, by artist Colette Miller, for her Global Angel Wings Project.

How do you react to jasmine fragrances? Do you have any favorites?

Perfume Chat Room, February 11

Perfume Chat Room, February 11

Welcome back to the weekly Perfume Chat Room, perfumistas! I envision this chat room as a weekly drop-in spot online, where readers may ask questions, suggest fragrances, tell others their SOTD, comment on new releases or old favorites, and respond to each other. The perennial theme is fragrance, but we can interpret that broadly. This is meant to be a kind space, so please try not to give or take offense, and let’s all agree to disagree when opinions differ. In fragrance as in life, your mileage may vary! YMMV.

Today is Friday, February 11, and it’s almost Valentine’s Day! Since perfume and other fragrance gifts are often given for Valentine’s Day, do you expect to give or get any? Anything you are secretly hoping to receive? I don’t yearn for these chocolates myself, but I certainly wouldn’t turn my nose up at them! Pun intended. And don’t miss the full review of the chocolates by Nose Prose!

Box of Valentine's heart-shaped chocolates
Neuhaus “perfume” chocolates; image from Neuhaus.

Like many perfumistas, I’ve already chosen and bought the fragrance I’d like to receive from my husband, lol. I haven’t opened it yet, though!! For any new readers: I am blessed, like many of you, with a partner who indulges my hobby/obsession. He has even picked out some of my favorites completely on his own, and when we travel (at least, when we did travel, in the before times), he will go with me to perfumeries and encourage me to buy fragrances.

The perfume I chose for myself was Lancome’s Peut-Etre, which I had been eyeing for some time. When I got an email offer in January for 40% off one item on their website, plus gifts with purchase, I caved. Considering that the gifts with purchase (full sizes of several skincare and cosmetics items) were said to have a combined retail value well above $200, the perfume was perfume-math free! Or so I tell myself.

Peut-Etre is said to be a musky, powdery rose, and it was created by Nathalie Lorson, so it was definitely calling my name. Plus I love the bottles in the Maison Lancome line, they’re so pretty! I’ll let you all know what it’s like, once I open it! And if I do another “Roses de Mai Marathon“, I’ll review it there.

If you haven’t yet browsed this month’s Scent Semantics posts, please do! You’ll find links to all six blogs here. This month’s word is “taste”, and it has been so much fun to read my fellow bloggers’ thoughts!

Scent Semantics blog list
Scent Sample Sunday: Iris Dragees

Scent Sample Sunday: Iris Dragees

Lancome has launched another in its “Maison Lancome Haute Parfumerie” line, and it’s a winner! I am coming to love this higher-end Lancome line, as it is launching some truly gorgeous florals, my first loves in fragrance. Iris Dragees , launched in 2018, is by perfumer Nathalie Lorson. Fragrantica lists its notes as follows: “top notes are bergamot and pink pepper; middle notes are freesia, orange blossom, almond, sugar and iris flower; base notes are iso e super, orris, vanilla and white musk.” The box and the Lancome website list only three notes: iris distillate, iris resinoid, and sugared almonds. The latter are the “dragees”, which are literally almonds coated in a hard sugar shell, usually in soft pastel colors.

Iris Dragees is very true to its name. Contrary to Fragrantica’s list, I smell iris right away, although there is a brief, fresh pop when first sprayed that could be a hint of bergamot. The iris jumps forward almost immediately, and it is a sweet iris, but not too sweet. (I’m not much into gourmand scents, though I do like some gourmand notes, like vanilla and coffee). Although iris is often perceived as “powdery” because of the note’s long use in, and association with, luxury powders, this iris feels less powdery to me although still floral, and  I think that’s because of the almond note. To my nose, almond lends a creaminess that is very appealing. Here, it is a light creaminess, so maybe more like almond milk — subtle, and enhancing the iris rather than announcing itself.

The “dragee” aspect of Iris Dragees also shows up quickly, with a light vanilla undertone  that also subtly supports the iris heart note. As the scent dries down, the iris becomes more and more pronounced, but it never loses the underlying sweetness from the “sugared almonds.” Iris Dragees lives in the same realm as its sibling from the same Maison Lancome line, Jasmins Marzipane, which Tania Sanchez gave five stars in the new “Perfumes: The Guide 2018.” It is a land of elegant sugared flowers, so artfully composed that to the human eye, it would be hard to tell whether the delicately tinted decorations on a gorgeous cake were real flowers or their idealized facsimiles.

Sugared iris flowers on wedding cake by Amanda Earl

“Iris” cake by Amanda Earl; image from http://www.amandaearlcakes.com.

A little goes a long way with Iris Dragees; a small spray on each of my wrists is ample for me to enjoy it, and its longevity is good. The base has a lightly woody vibe, which is probably from the Iso E Super listed among the base notes by Fragrantica. It is a soft landing from the soft heart notes.

Another aspect of this fragrance and its siblings which I appreciate is that they can be bought in a 14 ml size, just right to bring the price down to “impulse purchase” range (suggested retail $35.00), but enough to enjoy more than once or twice. These travel-size bottles are as pretty as the big ones, with their artwork based on cut paper.

Iris Dragee bottle

Iris Dragees by Maison Lancome; image from http://www.lancome.co.uk.

If you like iris fragrances, I suspect you will like this one a lot! I’m a relatively new convert to iris as a fragrance note; not that I ever disliked it, I’ve just always gravitated to greener florals and notes like muguet, rose, and lily. But I have discovered in the last couple of years that I really do like many iris-centered fragrances, such as Miller Harris’ Terre d’Iris and Laboratorio Olfattivo’s Nirmal.

Have you tried Iris Dragees or any others from Maison Lancome? What did you think? Can you recommend any other iris fragrances?

Edible iris flower cake toppers from Sugar Butterflies on Etsy.

Edible flowers from Sugar Butterflies