This week we're helping Gabby, who wants to find a deep, good quality but not too expensive evening fragrance — something unusual but comfortable. Here is what we know about Gabby:
She's in her early 20s, and is from and currently lives in New Orleans.
Gabby is a legal assistant and is applying for MFA programs in creative writing. She double majored in philosophy and comparative literature with a minor in math, and her favorite book of all time is War and Peace. She also tutors 6th-8th graders in English, and finds that more fulfilling than her current job.
She says her personal style is eclectic but feminine: dresses with interesting prints paired with vintage lace-up ankle boots. Like many young people, she's always short of cash, so she cooks for herself and shops at thrift stores.
She loves dancing, waterskiing, canoeing, biking, sneaking into hotel pools, and sometimes just loafing around with a good book and some decent coffee.
Gabby tends towards perfumes that are unisex but lean a bit towards the feminine side. Her absolute favorite smell is sweet olive, aka osmanthus (and no, she has not tried the local versions by Hove or Bourbon French). She also recently smelled benzoin essential oil, and she can't get enough of it. Other favorite smells include honeysuckle, wisteria, jasmine, bread pudding, basil, rosemary, cardamom, old books, good incense, a yuzu body lotion she bought from a spa, and rose tea.
Her favorite samples (she doesn't have any full bottles at the moment) include By Kilian Back to Black and Rose Oud, and Hermès Eau and Elixir des Merveilles. She sometimes enjoys Love, Chloé, but it's too powdery/girly-girl to be a favorite. She has only tried the Eau de Toilette version of Guerlain Shalimar — she likes the opening, but then it loses its depth and is reminiscent of Avon Skin-So-Soft. She sort of likes Prada by Prada, but it lacks warmth. She used to adore Tom Ford Black Orchid, but she wore it so much that it started to remind her of cucumbers. By Kilian A Taste of Heaven is nice but a bit too masculine, and Liaisons Dangereuses is well done but has this one artificial note that she can't deal with.
Gabby doesn't like artificial musks or aquatic scents, and she's burned out on vanillachoulis and Chanel Chance/Coco Mademoiselle on everyone. Bvlgari Jasmine Noir is "too potent and kinda sleazy"; Clinique Aromatics Elixir induces coughing fits.
Gabby recently tried Hermès L'Ambre des Merveilles and By Kilian Pure Oud, and loved both but they didn't seem terribly different from what she already wears. Tom Ford Champaca Absolute was interesting but a bit heavy; Tom Ford Jardin Noir Café Rose was awful.
What say you?
Note: top image courtesy of Victoria of Bois de Jasmin.