Madonna Truth or Dare ~ perfume review

Madonna Truth or Dare advertMadonna Truth or Dare flacon

Truth or Dare is the debut scent from pop icon Madonna. I am frequently forced to "research" the "celebrities" whose perfumes I review here, but even I know who Madonna is, and so I assume you do too. An informal survey of young people (ok, I just asked my tween son) reveals that her fame is wide enough to cross generational boundaries, but Truth or Dare is aimed at a more mature audience than most celebrity fragrance efforts, albeit not one quite so mature as Madonna herself — they're after women 25 to 45, with special emphasis on the 35 to 45 group. Once you cross 45, as we all know, you're safely outside of the fragrance industry's radar.

Truth or Dare is apparently associated with Madonna's new lifestyle brand of the same name (next up: shoes), and it was made under licensing arrangements with Coty. I'll repeat the statement from Madonna that I quoted when I announced Truth or Dare:

I have always been obsessed by fragrance and for years wanted to create something personal that was an expression of me, but that other people could relate to as well. Something classical and timeless and yet modern. My oldest memory of my mother is her perfume. I carry it with me everywhere. She always smelled like gardenias and tuberose, an intoxicating mixture [that was] feminine and mysterious. I wanted to re-create this scent, but with something fresh and new about it as well.1

I have no idea what Madonna's mother wore, but I've always heard that Madonna herself wore Robert Piguet Fracas, and it's easy enough to believe that Fracas was the reference for Truth or Dare — Truth or Dare is basically a big ole white floral with an armload of tuberose and a gardenia tucked behind the ear.

Piguet recently updated Fracas too, with Douglas Hannant de Robert Piguet.2 They thinned it out and cleaned it up and added plenty of pear, the fruit du jour. The end result was office-friendly and perfectly wearable — not what I look for in a tuberose, but it was nicely done and I can see why that approach might be attractive to anyone who finds a classic white floral too heavy or old-fashioned.

Madonna has taken a somewhat different route. Truth or Dare, which was developed by perfumer Stephen Nilsen, is described as a "white floral with a signature gourmand underneath", and that's just what it is, with more emphasis on the "white floral" than the "signature gourmand". It's heavily floral right from the outset, opening on a huge, bright, spiky burst of tuberose and gardenia, and slowly calming to a quieter blended white floral with the tuberose still prominent (the notes include gardenia, tuberose, neroli, jasmine, benzoin, lily, vanilla, caramelized amber and musk). The base is relatively pale, and the vanilla and caramelized amber replace what in a classic white floral would have been a darker, more animalic base. Still, the sugar is done with a light hand — there is a whiff of toasted vanilla sugar, but as a whole, Truth or Dare is not particularly foody, especially in comparison to your average celebrity fragrance. It smells like more like sweet flowers than sweet food.

Truth or Dare isn't a sheer or quiet scent; it's full bodied, or as they put it in the press materials, "robust". But it's also reasonably modern, or as Madonna put it, "fresh and new".3 If you smell it next to vintage Fracas, the first thing you notice is how relatively thin and clean it is — it is lightly indolic, and it's not so thin and clean as Douglas Hannant, but it has none of the creamy richness (or the delicious skank) of Fracas. Reasonably modern, then, but more old-fashioned than Douglas Hannant, and more old-fashioned than Estee Lauder's Private Collection Tuberose Gardenia, which maintained the lushness of the white flowers whilst rendering them smooth, airy and polished. If you wore all three fragrances together, as I did, and tried to guess which one cost the least, I think you'd pick out Truth or Dare, but that seems fair enough given that it really is the cheapest.4

Verdict: Truth or Dare is well done, and props to Madonna for not turning it into the frosted Fracas Pop-Tart that I feared she might. If you're a fan of Fracas already, I don't know why you'd prefer Truth or Dare, but if you've always wanted a Fracas Lite, widely available at a reasonable price, now you have one.

Madonna Truth or Dare is available in 30, 50 or 75 ml Eau de Parfum ($39-68) and in matching body products. The lasting power is very good. It is currently exclusive to Macy's.

1. Via Women's Wear Daily, 11/4/2011.

2. And several other celebrities have gone the white floral route recently — there's Kim Kardashian by Kim Kardashian and Mariah Carey Forever, and then there's the older and probably no longer available 3121 by Prince.

3. Still, one person's modern tuberose is another person's old-lady-perfume nightmare ("old lady" is not a term I approve of when applied to perfume, mind you, but please don't shoot the messenger), as indicated in this early review on the Macy's website: "I am a huge Madonna fan, have been waiting forever for this, The scent took me back to being a little girl and visiting my grandmothers home and also the homes of elderly neighbors. I am shocked Madonna aprroved [sic] of this scent."

4. Although I should note that the 30 ml of Fracas is currently $45 at Sephora, which is a very good deal although I have not smelled a new bottle of Fracas in a few years and have no idea if it's been reformulated. Fracas in 50 ml is $85, and there's also a travel roll-on for $25. We'll have to see if the 30 ml of Truth or Dare ever shows up in the US (they don't always); the 50 ml is $55. The Estee Lauder is $82 for 30 ml, and the Douglas Hannant is $95 for 50 ml.

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103 Comments

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  1. 50_Roses says:

    I’ve never been a fan of Madonna, but–I do have to (grudgingly) give her credit for not going for another fruity floral or pink cupcake scent. I am not a fan of BWFs anyway (they tend to smother me), so I probably wouldn’t buy this, but I will give it a sniff if I see it in Macy’s. It is refreshing to read of a celebrity perfume that seems to give a nod to classic perfumery, and that is geared toward someone older than 25. I keep hoping that the industry will figure out that it is us “mature” consumers who have the most money to spend anyway. I am “off the radar” myself (47), but I have far more disposable income for things like perfume than I did when I was in my teens and twenties.

    • austenfan says:

      My thoughts entirely, I will sniff this, even though I have never liked anything by Madonna, but this sounds good!

    • Robin says:

      I am not a Madonna fan, but then again, I don’t *dislike* her. In general I think I’m just not the type to be a fan — I can’t think of a person that would inspire me to buy a perfume just because their name was on it. The last time I felt like I was really a serious “fan” of somebody, I was a tween myself.

      And I’m reminded of that awesome Craig Ferguson piece about everybody marketing to teens these days :-)

      • nozknoz says:

        OH – Craig Ferguson – is that the video that you or someone linked to with the refrain, “They never meant any harm.”? I LOVED that and keep trying unsuccessfully to find it.

        • Robin says:

          It was one about how everyone markets to young people, but young people are stupid. It got removed from YouTube unfortunately.

          • Robin says:

            Oh no — it’s still there, just a different URL. Here is is:

            http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UKUZ42T9diU

          • Robin says:

            And you’re so right — he does say nobody meant any harm. I didn’t even remember that part.

          • Celestia says:

            Thanks for posting this. Craig is my favourite of all the late night hosts. His style of humour really appeals to me.
            Amarige, Michael Kors, Jardins de Bagatelle, White Diamonds, Beautiful…these are not my fragrance category. If ever there were a perfume to induce a migraine, one of these would be it. So I won’t like Madonna’s late-in-life offering. I also find the cross on the bottle an odd choice as not all Christians are into it and there are others who might find it offensive.

          • Robin says:

            Celestia, agree — sometimes he is really hysterical.

    • mathumom says:

      You summed up my thoughts exactly as I was reading the article. I too feel the same way about Madonna. I have avoided on purpose celebrity perfumes because I do not want to add any more money to their bank accounts. I too, at age 48, am beyond the market that the fragrance industry targets, but like you stated I also have so much more disposable income to spend on quality perfumes. In fact, I purchase more perfume annually than I did from age 25 – 35.

  2. lalicias says:

    Funny = “Once you cross 45, as we all know, you’re safely outside of the fragrance industry’s radar.”

    So what happens once you’re off the radar and in the safety zone?

    Good review, as usual. And thanks for the chuckle.

    • Robin says:

      You have to stand by while the industry rolls out 1000 new fruity floral cupcake fragrances :-)

      • mals86 says:

        Only a thousand?

        Pssh. I can do that with one nostril tied behind my back. I’m That Tough.

    • 50_Roses says:

      “So what happens once you’re off the radar and in the safety zone?”

      You start hanging out on perfume blogs and get your advice, recommendations, and information from other perfumistas rather than from advertising copy and marketing campaigns.

      • Robin says:

        Oh, but you don’t have to wait until you’re 45 to do that :-)

        • maggiecat says:

          Yes, it’s always a good idea!

    • AnnS says:

      Once you are off the radar, you can do whatever the #$%^ you want, and that’s the beauty of it.

  3. Tama says:

    I’ll try it – I don’t like Fracas but like tuberose otherwise, and don’t mind smelling like some of those old ladies at all. They smell good! Plus I’m more or less an old lady myself…

    Nice review!

    • 50_Roses says:

      Whenever I see or hear a perfume described as “old lady”, it makes me think I want to try it. The definition of “old lady” seems to be “not a fruity floral or cupcake scent”.

      • Jessica says:

        Same here. And that quote from the Macy’s website is priceless.

      • Robin says:

        I don’t like the phrase, but yes, I know exactly what it means, and it often means it will be right up my (old lady) alley.

    • Robin says:

      Never hurts to try! Going to be interesting to see if it sells, anyway, and what she does for an encore.

    • poodle says:

      I’m close to crossing the age line and I am totally an old lady at heart so I guess I’ll need to check this one out.

  4. ladymurasaki says:

    Thank you for the review, Robin. I normally don’t think about giving anything celebrity-related a try, but your review has changed my mind. I love Fracas and other good tuberose, gardenia fragrances and this one sounds decent.

    • Robin says:

      I don’t generally find celebrity fragrances any better or worse than designer fragrances geared towards the same market.

      • ladymurasaki says:

        I know what you mean. I don’t take notice of celebrities in general or what they do. According to my daughter, I’m antiquity! I’m passionate about music and I don’t like or dislike Madonna, but I like the fact that she’s produced something that she feels passionate about.

      • Merlin says:

        O,T, but Robin what other celeb fragrances do you like?

        • Robin says:

          Well, not a ton, but there aren’t a ton of lower end designer fragrances geared towards very young people that I love either! But some that I thought were well done — Jessica Simpson Fancy & Fancy Nights, J Lo Glow & Miami Glow, SJP Lovely & Covet, Hilary Duff With Love, the first Halle Berry scent.

          • Merlin says:

            thanks – more to try…

  5. APassionateJourney says:

    I was really close to buying Fracas last year in December but I was too afraid I wouldn’t finish the bottle so I wanted a rollerball of it. When I went to Macy’s and sprayed the Truth or Dare Fracas immediately came to my mind with just a bit more of the neroli. I wasn’t 100% sold on it until it got to the drydown, which is vanilla and amber. Doesn’t even smell like the same scent 40 minutes after you spray it. The body lotion is more of the vanilla/amber, which is what I prayed the body lotion would be like! I wonder how the next scent will be

    Oh, that day I also got Bottega Veneta

    • Robin says:

      I wonder too…will be interesting to see if her Truth or Dare lifestyle brand takes off.

  6. maggiecat says:

    I’m not a fan of tuberose – nor particularly of Madonna, although she doesn’t make me run screaming the way tuberose does. So this won’t be my scent – but an affordable scent for adult women? That, I like.

    • Robin says:

      It’s worth celebrating — we get few enough of them!

  7. lalicias says:

    Yes, I like it . . . good advice! :-)

    • lalicias says:

      That was supposed to be in response to post above – sorry!

  8. garamascara says:

    I have adorned Madonna since my dad took me to the T,G & Y in 1985 and bought me the Like a Virgin album . Honestly, she can do no wrong in my eyes. I adore Fracas too. I must take a trip to the Macy’s soon, no doubt it won’t be as exciting as my trip to T,G & Y but I am still super excited. Yay Madge!!!

  9. Elesa1 says:

    To my nose Truth or Dare is Fracas meets D&G Light Blue, if that makes sense. I also think it mistakes opacity (which it has) for true richness and depth (which it lacks). Still much better than it needed to be and, with such a recognizable accord, it can’t be accused of being generic or insipid. Overall IMO they handled this one well.

    • Robin says:

      Funny because I thought Mariah Carey Forever was a white flower mashup (in that case, of Marc Jacobs for Women) with Dolce & Gabbana Light Blue. That D&G is sneaky stuff :-)

      Not sure you can really get true richness & depth without spending more money on materials, which isn’t likely in a case like this!

  10. kaos.geo says:

    Thank you Robin!
    Your review is very interesting , and I enjoyed it very very much… more than usual actually…not only because I love your reviews, but because I am a very dedicated Madonna fan… not in a Tween way, but more like I admire her as an entrepreneur. the ultimate entrepreneur who keeps the company running.. Madonna is like the Lee Iacocca of entertainment.
    On the other hand I love how she pushes people’s perception of issues that are close to my heart like Aids awareness and Homophobia. As a young closeted gay man, she was the only voice that through her music and style said “It is ok to be who you are, It is actually more than OK it is the COOLEST to be different!” and that was reassuring, to say the least… So there lies the root of my Madonna fandom. I consider myself as a stockholder in the Madonna “corporation” and my shares are the original CDs I bought through the years :-) she is the only company that never goes broke ;-)

    And now.. I will try the frag in October when I get to the US. Perhaps I can score a sample before that, but I don`t think so!
    Thanks again for your review!

    • Robin says:

      I think that’s great. I hope it didn’t sound above like I was dissing the whole idea of fandom. I just don’t seem to have that gene, or whatever! There are actors I like, for instance, and singers, but I don’t want to meet them or buy their products, if that makes sense.

  11. Omega says:

    I just sniffed this, it smelled EXACTLY like I thought it would. I have smelled this scent before, like a vintage even in a milk glass bottle I believe. This smelled like a remake I have sniffed before. I know I have smelled this exact scent pretty much..any one happen to wanna take a crack at what vintage it could be? I am trying hard to remember!

    Not impressed with the fume as I knew exactly what it would smell like..due to me sniffing a vintage that was comprised of the same notes & bottle glass I believe. I just cant’ think of it.

    Not a Madonna fan..not a T or D fan..not enough ‘dare’ for me in this. She should have called it Vogue or something..it would have fit better.

    • Robin says:

      Nothing is coming to mind, sorry! Hope someone else will think of it.

    • nozknoz says:

      The only popular milk glass bottle I can think of right off is Cacharel Anais Anais. Also, at one point, Lubin Nuit de Longchamps came in a milk glass bottle with a blue toile-like print on it, and there was a Trussardi, too. Please let us know if this rings a bell or you think of it!

    • mals86 says:

      White Shoulders, maybe? That’s a classic white floral that’s been around for a long time, and I think has probably had several different bottles.

      • AnnS says:

        Ah, I loved White Shoulders when I was a teen – my mom always suggested it was too mature for me so I never got a bottle.

  12. Ikat says:

    I don’t like the bottle.

    I have great options for tuberose, don’t need another.

    The photo ad is creepy- Madonna snuggling herself. Yuck

    Not a fan, as you can tell.

    • Robin says:

      I am really not liking that ad either. And didn’t adore the commercial, although I guess it’s striking.

  13. Omega says:

    +1 on the ad being really creepy, esp the side shot..:p

  14. mitsouko says:

    I am a huge Madonna fan but I have yet to smell this. As I love fracas and gardenia …well I am sure it’s safe to say I will love this. I believe I am *in* the target group ! *LOL*
    I downloaded one of her songs today ” I Don’t Give A” – good stuff . Madonna speaking her mind once again ! :)

  15. chanelben says:

    i ordered truth or dare, sat and just got it today. it smells fabulous!!! i just put the lotion so far, and after a few minites it gets this peppermint smell mixed in with the gardenia,which to me is lovely. i can see how it smells vintage and modern at the same time.i am a huge madonna fan, so i ordered unsniffed. i think the commercial hit the nail on the head for the personality of the perfume.so over all, i do think madonna did well with this.i like the celebrity perfumes,jessica simpson fancy is one of my favs!but i am glad madonna went sophisticated and sorta retro with this.

    • ladymurasaki says:

      Lucky you! I wonder when it’ll be available in the UK!?

    • Robin says:

      Peppermint, interesting!

      JS Fancy was really well done too. I hated her last one though.

      • Omega says:

        I can’t stand Fancy! Something smells awful in that..like really chemical. I do kinda like Fancy Nights though. Not bad for a celeb scent. I have it.

  16. chanelben says:

    i read on a website that it will be available in the uk maybe later in the year or early 2013.

    • ladymurasaki says:

      Ugh! Early 2013?! I think I have accumulated enough excuses for a trip to NY. Not just for F or D, mind you, but for other fragrant possibilities.

    • Robin says:

      Thanks.

  17. annemarie says:

    I’m deeply intrigued and would love to give this a go, even just for the sake of trying a celbuscent that quite deliberately references the past, and which unapologetically offers us something ‘robust’.

    I also find it gratifying that Madonna is obviously NOT giving us that ridiculous line: ‘I never used to like perfume but MY perfume is different.’ I saw that line yet again the other day, given out by that Desperate Housewifes woman … what’s her name? … Eva Somebodyorother …

    • Robin says:

      Eva Longoria goes even farther — she says she was always allergic to perfume. And I don’t even think she’s the first to use that gambit.

    • OperaFan says:

      I’m not a Madonna fan, but I DO admire her, and I agree about the “I usually don’t like perfumes…” pitch. Better a perfume from a self-proclaimed perfumista than one who is not. Catherine Deneuve comes to mind, of course, as possibly the greatest of them all….

  18. sinnerman says:

    I think the bottle is great! A little religious and goth with a white finish gives the impression of purity and light! I think Madonna has amazing taste for art , fashion and art direction, but fear the bottle may look dated and tacky as the years roll by! Well done and great first attempt !

    • Robin says:

      I generally love white glass, but haven’t yet seen the bottle in person.

  19. Joe says:

    Thanks once again for a very time-sensitive review of a new launch.

    I like Madonna just fine, and if I see the bottle in Macy’s or something, I’ll sniff it, but I’m not going to go out of my way. At a certain level of perfumista-hood, one is sure to know of and/or own much better white floral fragrances. Still, it doesn’t sound bad. I kept wondering as I was reading how similar it was to that Kardashian fragrance, with which I’m also unfamiliar.

    It’s still so nice and refreshing to hear that she’s always been “obsessed” with fragrance. Maybe out there somewhere there’s some celebrity who’s a crazy perfume hoarder/maniac like some of us.

    • Robin says:

      The Kardashian is much closer to Michael Kors than Fracas. I don’t think it was made with as much care as this one, though. Hard to quantify these things, but it just smells a notch again cheaper, you know?

  20. malik.al.sayf says:

    A little off topic, sorry! But when was fracas last ‘updated’? Was it after your review on 2006?

    • Robin says:

      No idea, and could well have been more than once — perfume houses don’t usually publicize minor ingredient changes.

    • Zazie says:

      Don’t know if it helps, but the current Fracas smells *exactly* like the 2006 review describes. It has probably went through several minor changes, but the LADY doesn’t show them. I have older samples, recent samples, and the fragrance seems very much the same.

      Actually, the modern version is also very similar to the vintage, despite it must have a completely different ingredient list (the original was filled with bases no longer available).
      Fracas has not been messed with.

      On the other hand, the parfum differs slightly form the edp. But still the relationship is very evident – more so than in n°5 for example, where you might love the parfum and find the edt/edp just fine, or even unpleasant.

      • Zazie says:

        (I think fracas edp is a better fragrance, but the parfum lasts longer, is a tad creamier and darker, and has a contracted development).
        (I have the parfum FB, but often enjoy the edp samples more)

      • Robin says:

        Thank you so much Zazie, that helps!

  21. mals86 says:

    Neither a fan nor a disliker of Madonna, but I lurve me some BWFs, and even Little White Florals might make me happy. Next time I run across a tester, I’ll grab a bit. I doubt I’ll actually *buy* – I’m saving up for my very own bottle of Carnal Flower, or at least another decant – but I’ll be very interested to smell it. Thanks for the review!

  22. nozknoz says:

    That octagonal bottle appears to be the same shape as some of the vintage (1960s?) Millot Crepe de Chine bottles. (Just search ebay for “Millot perfume” and several of them will pop up.) I wonder if that’s what Madonna’s mother wore or if it’s a complete coincidence (or random copying of old bottle designs)?

    I loved Madonna in the film Desperately Seeking Susan and haven’t paid too much attention otherwise – OK, I confess: I do have the Ray of Light CD somewhere.

    • Robin says:

      Thanks — will have to google that bottle.

    • Zazie says:

      I loved that movie! And I remember buying the true blue album when I was a teen… I liked her very much, back then.

  23. Olfacta says:

    I’m actually intrigued. Off to hunt down a sample.

  24. AnnS says:

    Fracas blows my socks off, even though I always want to like it. I need my tuberose to be very sheer or I don’t exactly know what b/c normally tuberose is an ice-pick through the head for me. The only ones so far that I can stomach are Carnal Flower in small doses and AG Gardenia Passion, which really is a tuberose scent. I’ll sniff this if I pass by, but it’s not on my radar. I liked Madonna when I was a girl – Lucky Star was one of the very first videos I ever saw back when MTV was all about videos. That song is just great and I had a pile of black jelly bracelets to prove my love. I don’t know much about her current stuff, but up to about her album True Blue I was interested. Hey, I’m not dating myself at all!!!!

    • Robin says:

      This really isn’t sheer, so doubting you will love it. But never hurts to try, etc etc.

  25. sally says:

    I smelled it and I couldn’t wait to wipe it off, to me its a like the same family of bijon, Roberto cavali, Donna Karan ( black bottle) I’m 40 not only this isnt the season for it, it was disappointing.

  26. bluegardenia says:

    I still remember when i was a teenager, Karl at Aedes told me that Madonna wore L’artisan Tubereuse. I bought it as well and still wear it a decade and a half later. I only wear tuberose fragrances and have all the great ones (the one that gets the most compliments by far is Fracas), so not sure i’ll need this if it’s similar but mass market quality. But interesting to know she’s still a tuberose girl after all these years!

    • Robin says:

      It isn’t mass market, it’s prestige (it’s to be sold in department stores) but in terms of quality, it’s true that it can’t beat a company like L’Artisan or Piguet.

      She probably wore a bunch of perfumes…I’ve always heard she liked several by Annick Goutal too.

  27. bluegardenia says:

    Ah, thanks for clearing up the difference between mass market and prestige. Are designer fragrances at department stores a different category or are those prestige as well?
    Yes I also remember reading over the years that she’s worn AG Gardenia Passion, Creed Tubereuse Indiana, and Dior Hypnotic Poison. Now I got curious and did some googling and apparently she’s also been fond of Diptyque Olene, Caron Nocturnes, Narcisse Noir, Child, and Fracas. (Obviously she’s bought and worn dozens or more over the years just like anyone else.) Sounds like she’s a white florals fan, so I commend her taste! Thanks for the review of Truth or Dare, I’ll be checking it out. The description makes me think of both Fracas and Tubereuse Indiana.

    • Robin says:

      Designer fragrances get the same distinction: prestige if department store, mass if primarily in mass market chains/discount stores. Niche, to the industry, has a similar distribution-based meaning — it just means in fewer stores, and more often in boutiques than chains. That is why people were often confused by the “niche” fragrances in the Fifi awards — they frequently weren’t what perfumistas thought of as “niche”.

  28. bluegardenia says:

    Thanks Robin! You know everything! :)

    • Robin says:

      Only if you stick to a narrow range of subjects, ha…

  29. lowonder says:

    I was waltzing around the Macy’s counter and came across Truth or Dare. I am NOT a fan of celeb scents, but I must admit, I was curious to sniff out what the ever evolving and the seemingly everlasting Madonna created. Would it be something daring and edgy, something dark and sexy, something sweet and enticing?? …. hold up…wait for it, wait for it….. took a deep- whif….and VOILA …. “White Diamonds” version 2.0 ( womp womp womp womp)…..

  30. cassieflower says:

    Thank you for the review, Robin, you’ve really sold this to me. Normally celeb scents just fall under my radar, I have no interest in the media hype at the expense of what’s actually INSIDE the bottle. But then I see white floral mentioned. . . ok this might be interesting. Tuberose, tick. Gardenia, tick. Jasmine, tick. A brief mention of Fracas. . . sitting up straight now and taking notice :)
    Anyway, the upshot of this was that I dived in and purchased a bottle of this today, online and unsniffed. It can’t be too bad, can it? Even if it turns out not to be the next big thing for me, I have a daughter who is in the early stages of perfume mania. I may have to stage an intervention some time in the future.

  31. ChristineM says:

    Wow…you need to be in the right mood to wear this perfume…it is sickly sweet and can be very cloying. It would probably induce vomiting in a pregnant woman. I think Fracas would be preferable.

    It seems like a White Diamonds, Elizabeth Taylor type of perfume.

    • Joanne says:

      You really nailed it as far as I’m concerned. I bought a small sample, one spray of which quite thoroughly scented the entire room, myself *and* my daughter–who ran gagging (thus making me wonder about your p.g. reference. Uh oh.) It was, to me, overwhelmingly and singularly gardenia and waaayyy too strong. I was very disappointed.

  32. bluegardenia says:

    I finally tried this, and i’m very very surprised! I’m a huge madonna fan. As a woman growing up in the 80s she was incredibly inspiring and bold and captivating to me. I just shelled out for front row tickets to her latest tour (yes, i’m that big of a fan). I’m also a huge white floral fan and wear fracas, l’artisan tubereuse, carnal flower, do son, and many other tuberose scents on a daily basis. Alas!! I wasn’t in love with Truth or Dare. It’s much, much, much too sweet for me. Funny that so many reviewers have stated they’re glad she didn’t go for a cupcake or candyfloss celebrity scent, because that’s what this smells like to me. gardenia, tuberose, and marshmallow-cupcake-cottoncandy-bubblegum-vanilla. The drydown is softer and more tolerable, but the opening for me is sharp, shrill, and most definitely sickly sweet and cloying. Sort of like that awful Flying Fox shower gel from Lush, which induced gagging while I bathed. Sigh. I hear Madonna is launching a second fragrance soon enough. Hope I like it better but perhaps I’m just spoiled by the expensive stuff I already love.

    • bluegardenia says:

      Okay, okay…smelling it again this afternoon (maybe my nose works better in the daytime?) and I don’t hate it. I agree with everyone who said it’s well done. Still too sweet for me personally, but I guess it is designed to sell. That said, I’ll get it in the bath gel form and use it as a bubble bath!

  33. MrsRabbit says:

    I’m 49 and just now getting interested in perfume…and I’m off the industry’s radar? ***sigh***

  34. jonr951 says:

    A flanker to T or D already?! Truth or Dare Naked. Is this real?! If it is, I’m terrible and I’m EXCITED!!! Haha! : )

    http://www.mimifroufrou.com/scentedsalamander/2012/10/madonna_truth_or_dare_naked_20.html#more

    • Robin says:

      I posted about it earlier today — it’s real!

      • jonr951 says:

        OMG u did!!! I’m excited!!! Haha! : )

  35. Rori says:

    Hi. I am here like a year late, but I just got a bottle of this in Walmart, I know, I know. Christmas clearance in May… but I love Madonna and the reviews on this are so good.

    I LOVE it. It is not a fragrance I would have ever thought I would try based on the description.

    But I am so glad I did. It is LOVELY. It reminded me of my prom night (I got gardenias) and other beautiful memories in my life.

    As one of who leans toward the amber notes… like L’Ambre Hermes, this is quite a break for me and I am so glad I dared.

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