Rosie Jane Tilly ~ fragrance review

Rosie Jane Tilly mood board

Tilly is the second fragrance from Rosie Jane; I still haven't tried the first fragrance, Leila Lou, but I recently came across a sample vial of Tilly and decided that this was a good time to try it, since Tilly is a perfume oil that "effortlessly captures the essence of summer" with notes of grapefruit, pineapple and tropical gardenia.

My experience of Tilly reminded me of my usual experience with the season of summer itself. On my skin, Tilly starts off like a freshly mixed fruit-juice punch — grapefruit and pineapple, yes, plus something like mango. It's fun, the way a summer cocktail should be. (Remember L'Artisan Parfumeur Ananas Fizz? That was a wonderful example of the fruity-cocktail-as-perfume genre.) Unfortunately, after I've enjoyed the sensation of that seasonal refreshment, with its promise of long days, festive evenings, cute floral dresses, you get the picture — things go awry for a while. There's a clash of coconut and a raw white floral that could be a low-quality jasmine; the effect is harsh and sticky and a little bit nauseating, like the portion of the summer that brings high humidity and sunburn and wilted gardens and (for me, at least) the desire to escape the crowds and be alone in a dark, air-conditioned room. Tilly's party is just a little too hot and crowded for me at this point.

Fortunately, the dry down of the fragrance is much more pleasing. About two hours after I've applied Tilly, I'm left with a smooth harmony of creamy gardenia, bright citrus and sweet coconut milk. This final phase reminds me of the scents in Sarah Horowitz's "Perfect" collection — it has a casual, cheerful attitude. By now, I feel like I'm savoring the final week or two of summer, when the temperature has dropped and an outdoor social gathering is an enjoyable occasion again, without the sweat and the blazing sun and the too-strong smells of mid-summer. 

Will Rosie Jane eventually release an autumn fragrance, to follow springtime's Leila Lou and summer's Tilly? I don't think so; this brand seems to have a more sunny-weather approach to fragrance. It also seems to be aimed at women who prefer a lighter scent; in that case, they should apply Tilly with caution, since it's a perfume oil and it has more strength and sillage in its first hour or so than you might expect.

What fragrance "captures the essence of summer" for you? Feel free to share in the comments!

Rosie Jane Tilly perfume oil

Rosie Jane Tilly is $39 for 5 ml Perfume Oil in a roller-ball dispenser, and can be found at b-glowingBeautyhabit, Indiescents and Parfum1.

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  1. RoseRed says:

    Dead Sexy by Tokyo Milk captures some Summer memories for me though admittedly it’s because it smells like the way that Renaissance Pleasure Faire did when I was a performer there for oh, ten years or so. I don’t “Do Faire” any more but I enjoy smelling Dead Sexy which to me smells like fresh clean hay, vanilla and sandalwood, or a combination of the hay bales around the performers area plus the thick heavy sandalwood and vanilla hippie perfume I used to wear at the time to cover up the fact that actors sweat like a hog in the August California sun when wearing clothing meant for 70 degrees and foggy England. Tokyo Milk does not last even if you over apply but no matter. It’s worth it to get a hit of happy summer memories, roaming the faire with your friends and chasing the cute boys in the very Tight tights ;D

    • Jessica says:

      This all sounds good to me! I feel like I’m there, just reading your description.

  2. kindcrow says:

    Leila Lou reminds me of Petite Cherie by A.G.

    • Jessica says:

      Interesting! I don’t wear Petite Cherie myself, but I love recommending it to other women who are looking for pretty, youthful fruity-florals.

  3. ladymurasaki says:

    Oh? Gardenia, you say? I must give this a try :)

  4. annemarie says:

    Orange blossom! Last year, that meant Houbigant’s Orangers en Fleurs, in a large decant. This coming summer (on its way now) I’m going to try Patricial de Nicolai’s new orange blossom, Eau Soleil, and also catch up with her L’Eau a la Folie and Eau d’Ete.

    Coconut is a summery scent, but maybe too heavy in humid conditions.

    • Jillie says:

      I haven’t yet tried Soleil, but I adore L’Eau a la Folie and love Eau d’Ete, so you are in for a treat!

      • annemarie says:

        Thanks! I’ve not tried many of her summer fragrances. Summer can’t come fast enough.

    • Jessica says:

      I do love a nice orange blossom, and that Houbigant was a pleasant surprise for me, last summer!

      I like LUSH’s Orange Blossom very much, too.

  5. annina says:

    I have Eau Soleil! It’s gorgeous! I bought it blindly after reading Olfactoria’s review – something I never do. It’s citrus, orange blossom, and light woodiness. I adore it, and it’s perfect for summer.

    • Jessica says:

      Patricia de Nicolai does beautiful work!

    • annemarie says:

      Oh that’s good to know. I’m so looking forward to trying it but want the weather to warm up a bit first. Olfactoria’s review was great.

  6. rivercitylizzy says:

    I’m dismayed when I try a new fragrance and it passes through an “ewewewgetitoff” phase, either in the beginning, middle, or end. Even if I find the scent interesting overall, that “ew” phase becomes a deal breaker.

    Summer here has been an odd duck–alternating triple-digit heat waves and balmy 80s with a few stretches of the average 90s we’re accustomed to. I’ve been using my decant of Sarah Horowitz Perfect Coconut Milk and the new Scent Library sample set from Ineke Perfumes (Sweet William and Briar Rose I have tried so far, oh my…they’re GORGEOUS), along with my perennial favorite Fig Tree by Sonoma Scent Studio, to cope with the meteorological mood swings ;)

    • Jessica says:

      I so agree — the bumpy, harsh heart of this one makes the opening and the drydown kind of difficult to enjoy.

      I liked Sweet William very much when I tried it! and SSS is always wonderful.

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