With Love Hilary Duff fragrance review

With Love perfume by Hilary Duff

With Love Hilary Duff launched this fall under the Elizabeth Arden label. It is the first scent from the singer/actress (if you are as out of it as I am, here is her Wikipedia entry), who reportedly started working on her fragrance by...

...smelling more than 100 single notes before narrowing her choices down to 10, including amber. "I discovered that everything I really loved was [in] a warm Oriental," she said. (via Women's Wear Daily, 7/21/2006)

With Love is a mossy woods fragrance developed by perfumers Rodrigo Flores-Roux and Stephen Nilsen of Quest, and includes notes of mangosteen fruit, exotic spices, chai latte, mangosteen blossom, cocobolo wood, balsam, incense, amber milk and amber musk.

With Love targets women in the 15-24 year old age range; if you didn't already know that, you'd probably be tipped off by the massive dose of sugar and tropical fruit in the top notes. The sweetness takes about 20 minutes to drop to acceptable levels, by which time, happily, we've moved into more interesting territory: a creamy ambery-woods, vanillic and still a tad sweet, but considerably less sweet than many of this year's crop of celebrity fruity-florals. What remains of the candy disappears in the later dry down, which is mostly deep woods and musk.

It is almost but not quite dark, ditto on the spicy, but it has a pleasing warmth, and once the top notes are gone, it doesn't smell obviously geared towards the teen market. Neil Morris noted recently in the Boston Herald that "a guy could wear this". A guy willing to wait through the top notes, to be sure, but still, for a celebrity scent, it isn't quite what you'd expect. You could easily find a more unusual or elegant fragrance, but for a celebrity scent, it qualifies on both counts, and the retro-glam advertising and packaging are a huge improvement over most of Duff's celebrity competition at the perfume counter. Nicely done.

With Love Hilary Duff is an Eau de Parfum, and the lasting power is excellent. It is available in spray and rollerball packaging at Macys and Sephora.

Shop for perfume

FragranceNetParfums Raffy

53 Comments

Leave a comment, or read more about commenting at Now Smell This. Here's a handy emoticon chart.

  1. Anonymous says:

    Even though I am very jaded when it comes to celebrity fragrances, With Love was a pleasant surprise. I did not get loads of sugar like you did. In fact, even the top notes are rather nicely constructed and the drydown is very interesting. I could care less for Hilary Duff, but then again, what are the chances that she actually had any input in the fragrance? :)

  2. Anonymous says:

    I'm glad the young lady has some taste in perfume, but didn't Guerlain just do a “With Love” three years ago? How confusing!

  3. Anonymous says:

    V, I find the top notes almost unbearably sweet, but agree it was a pleasant surprise, and improves on subsequent wearings, unlike DHFF, which I liked on a card but which seemed more dull each time I put it on.

    And of course, she claims she was highly involved, but don't they all…

  4. Anonymous says:

    Oh my…we simply must get you samples of Mandarin Mandarine, 68 and/or ANYTHING else to review. I nearly fell over when I saw Hillary Duff…what's next Loves Baby Soft??? :) Then again – if you had readers (and friends) with more moxie – they would have brought you back some fragrance samples to review.

  5. Anonymous says:

    Apparently Love's Baby Soft is much easier to come by than Mandarine Mandarin, and at least it doesn't smell like celery ;-)

  6. Anonymous says:

    Kudos for Hilary's new fragrance, I too was pleasantly surprised by this fragrance. It does remind me alot of Versace's Crystal Noir, so much so one could probably not own both. She seems grown-up at her age and she manages to almost come off as someone with sophisticated taste levels… so rare for most pop idols we know!? Now if we could just get her to stop throwing up her food and gain a little weight and self confidence she would be well onto her way to becoming a fantastic woman!!

  7. Anonymous says:

    It wasn't bad at all. Reminded me of Hanae Mori Butterfly somewhat. As you said, it has pleasing warmth and that is what I like about it. I wish it wasn't quite so sweet.

  8. Anonymous says:

    i thought that this too could be worn unisex! it reminds me of dolce and gabbana's light blue (with a little baby phat goddess golden). maybe an ingredient that is in both that i haven't learned by name!

  9. Anonymous says:

    Will have to try Crystal Noir again, I hardly remember it and wouldn't have made the connection. And sorry to hear HD is another pop star with food issues…

  10. Anonymous says:

    Yes, I can see the Butterfly comparison. I could do with less sugar in the opening too…after an hour, either I was used to it, or most of the sugar was gone ;-)

  11. Anonymous says:

    Interesting, wouldn't have made the connection to the D&G either. The Baby Phat I haven't managed to try yet, although I think I have a sample floating around & will have to see if I can lay my hands on it…

  12. Anonymous says:

    Second the three-dots-analysis. The first dot Guerlain W/t Love, the second Jean Renou W/t Love(I think it’s the name). now it’s time for HD 3 dots WL.

  13. Anonymous says:

    I think it might be Jean Reno Loves You…which actually cracks me up, great name.

  14. Anonymous says:

    This one just stayed sweet on me forever, and maybe it eventually turned, but that would have been hours later, when my short attention span had drifted. :)

  15. Anonymous says:

    Might be worth another try, but probably not…it isn't like there isn't anything else to wear, LOL…

  16. Anonymous says:

    YUck! I'm into Celebrity fragrances. Actually, thats all im into. (With the exception of Miss Dior Cherie and Escada). This one I didn't like!!!

  17. Anonymous says:

    Sorry you didn't like it! Plenty of other celebrity scents anyway…

  18. Anonymous says:

    This perfume stayed sweet on me too… so much so that I washed it off after a couple of hours! :| Smells like an ever-so-slightly-classy teeny-bopper.

  19. Anonymous says:

    LOL — well at least it ranks as “ever-so-slightly-classy”. I still think this is probably the best celebrity scent this year, but obviously not everyone agrees with me :-)

  20. Anonymous says:

    Even though I don't own any celebrity scents, I agree that this is the best one of this entire year. Now that it's coming to a close I don't think anyone else is competition for it. I bought a big gift set for myself after testing it for many days. I didn't get any of the too sweet notes and thankful for that. It melts really nicely into skin and has alot of soft warmth that I've been craving in perfume but couldn't find until now. Thanks for the articles, they were helpful.

  21. Anonymous says:

    There are a few that I haven't gotten to yet, but I'd have to agree that it will probably be the best celebrity scent of 2006. Rodrigo Flores Roux also did this year's Donna Karan Gold, another great scent. And he did the older Donna Karan Black Cashmere — that one “melts into the skin” too, I think.

    My money is on Sarah Jessica Parker for 2007 though! She did a great job with Lovely, and guessing (or maybe just hoping) she'll do even better with her next.

  22. Anonymous says:

    I smelt the perfume a few times from the bottle when I was shopping. The woody scent was a little too strong for me and I didn't bother trying it on my skin. After reading the reviews in here, I decided to try it on my skin when I run into this perfume in store again. And holy, I loved it! When tried on my skin, the perfume has a nice balance of sweet notes (which I love) and woody notes. It didn't smell generic or familiar (thank God!). I agree with you folks that this is probably the best celebrity scent of 2006!

  23. Anonymous says:

    So glad you found a favorite :-)

  24. Anonymous says:

    I gave this a try today and on me the top notes left quickly and I was left with those woodsy bottom ones. (what is it with different peoples body chemistry?)

    It has a haunting quality and though I go for sweet and fruity fragrances, this one I would enjoy wearing. It creates a mood quite easily and I would want it for evenings out especially.

  25. Anonymous says:

    The top notes will evaporate faster on dry skin. Try a very emollient but unscented lotion or cream, that might help!

  26. Anonymous says:

    Is that what it is then, the amount of moisture in the skin? I thought it had something to do with ones body chemistry. I actually do not have dry skin and I use body cream day and night, as well as numerous times during the day on my hands.

    But I purchased it today and it's a welcome addition to the “collection”!!!

  27. Anonymous says:

    Well, no, that is not necessarily the only reason, but it is one reason that the top notes might not linger. Here is an interesting article about “skin chemistry”:

    http://www.madsci.org/posts/archives/nov2001/1006805763.Gb.r.html

  28. Anonymous says:

    I had glanced at that recently here. It's fascinating. Well, whatever the components and variables are that go on with me, I find that I can't hold a scent easily. Only certain ones will stay with me which is frustrating.

    Especially as I am the sort that wants to have scent around me all my waking hours. Whether it's on my person, or in the environment. I don't want to think what I spend on candles, room sprays and oils for the home a year, much less perfumes.

  29. Anonymous says:

    Do try spraying a bit in your hair or even on a scarf, I find that works well. But otherwise, can't think of any advice other than to carry it with you :-)

  30. Anonymous says:

    What a whiner I am!! Poor me. haaaaaaaa!! Well, the hair tip makes sense for I have found that if I happen to get pefume onto my hair, that it lingers. Also I will spray onto fabric, for the same reason. We all know how cigarette smoke stays on hair and fabric; same principle I suppose.. And take some with me? I only buy perfumes in smaller sizes because I need to always take it with me or else the scent goes south.

    Oh, I have such tremendous problems to face!! :) Thanks for giving me such helpful advice, though!!

  31. Anonymous says:

    I agree with Robin that this is the best celebrity scent released so far this year. I sniffed it fully expecting to be underwhelmed, but was very pleasantly surprised! I must admit I really like this, and will probably purchase a bottle to wear when the cooler weather approaches. It has a woody, spicy warmth that I love, and I actually thought the “sweet factor” was pretty restrained once the perfume settled down. Nicely balanced. It reminded me a *bit* of Prada without the patch overload. I say, if you like a perfume, who cares if a celebrity's name is attached to it? It was developed by professional perfumers, after all, and it's no different than using a supermodel or sex for marketing hype… :-)

  32. Anonymous says:

    Totally agree with all of that! Not sure this one is doing well, which is a shame — I think it is WAY better than anything from J Lo or Britney over the past year.

  33. Anonymous says:

    I really liked this review of “With Love.” I'm a guy and I am a Hilary fan and decided to try her fragrance at the store. I was surprised it wasn't overly floral like most celeb-perfumes and it could be unisex. I liked it so much I decided to purchase it after I kept returning to try it everytime I was at the department store. With Love is subtle, warm with vanilla yet woodsy and musk undertones. It's very unique and addictive. I'm not afraid to say.. I really like it!! If you're a guy and you like it, don't be afraid to wear it with Dignity! :)

    BTW, here's a tip I found online.. With Love can be found at TJ Maxx for a great deal of $30 for 3.3 fl oz.

  34. Anonymous says:

    It really is a well done fragrance. I thought it was the best celeb effort last year.

    Haven't seen it at my TJ Maxx lately, but a number of the online discounters carry it.

  35. Anonymous says:

    Argh! I bought this and I really like it, only problem is, I'm slightly embarrassed to tell people what I'm wearing! I know that's silly. So, some would suggest Hanae Mori Butterfly as an alternative? Would you suggest the EDP or the EDT? I also don't care for the first notes of With Love, but I do love the drydown, the woodsy but still feminine notes.

  36. Anonymous says:

    I'm not a huge fan of Hanae Mori — too sweet for me — and offhand can't remember the difference between the 2 concentrations so I'm no help, sorry!

  37. Anonymous says:

    I would suggest the EDP of Hanae Mori – it's richer and lasts much longer than the EDT. It is sweet, but the wood notes are beautiful and are what help keep it much more sophisticated than, say, Pink Sugar and the like. As a side note, I really don't detect much similarity between Hanae Mori and With Love…a closer match, in my opinion, would be Casmir by Chopard. Good luck!

  38. Anonymous says:

    I saw this perfume at Kohl's about a month and a half ago.
    I'm not big on celebrity scents, but I decided to try this anyway just to see what it was like. It is a bit spicier than the usual celebrity scent, but not by a whole lot.
    It was pleasing enough to my nose, but it still veered quite heavily towards the sweet side.
    I think this would be a perfect scent for the tweens or teens out there.

  39. Anonymous says:

    I liked With Love — thought the dry down was more interesting than most scents for 'tweens. But yes, it is sweet :-)

  40. Anonymous says:

    I used to love this fragrance, & it's still tolerable, but ot smells kind of like maple syrup to me now..lol

  41. Anonymous says:

    Too bad! Did you try Wrapped With Love?

  42. Anonymous says:

    I did, & I wasn't that impressed, it's actually suprising because I have a perfume obsession..I love almost about everything!

    oh well, maybe i'll give it another try.

    :)

  43. Anonymous says:

    I tried this on my skin when I went shopping with my husband. All I have to say is YUCK. Its smelled terrible on me (much better on the sample paper). It was so bad that my husband begged me to shower when we got home and I only sprayed it on one wrist.

  44. Anonymous says:

    LOL — sounds like you won't be needing a bottle!

  45. Anonymous says:

    A nice scent, nothing unique or special but it's fair priced and pleasant. It doesn't seem to have a particular base I pick up, it just seems ordinary.

    Jenny

  46. Anonymous says:

    Thanks!

  47. Anonymous says:

    I love this scent at the beginning, but after 20 minutes or so it starts to smell like bubble gum on me. Maybe it works better on someone with different skin chemistry – but for me, smelling like Bubblelicious is not acceptable.

  48. Anonymous says:

    There you are then, that's money saved ;-)

  49. 30SecondsToMarsFan says:

    I actually really like this perfume! I think its because of the amber.

  50. han7890 says:

    This is a great perfume. I love it. It’s very warm.

  51. nelleeflamboyant says:

    This is gorgeous! Probably my favourite fragrance, definately the best “celeb” fragrance Ive ever tried. Its very clean, heavy on vanilla and amber. Plus the bottles gorgeous and very sophisticated. Unortunately Ive nearly ran out and theyve stopped selling it in the UK (as far as I can see in all the perfume shops). Gutted.

  52. RoseRed says:

    Pretty, I keep on coming back to sniff it and have done so since it came out. Then last week I managed to score an Unbox for 10 bucks! Now it’s one of my What-to-wear-when-you-don’t-know-what-to-wear smells. Great for days when I’m feeling indecisive or I just want something pink and girly without being TOO pink and girly. Not groundbreaking but one will I wear often and hands down the most wearable Celebrity Scent out there.

Leave a reply