Aftelier Organic Ylang Face Elixir ~ scented body product review

Aftelier Organic Ylang Face Elixir

The weather has suddenly turned cool and windy here in the northeast, so it’s the perfect time for me to upgrade my skincare for extra moisture and protection — and if I can work a good-smelling product or two into my regimen, then all the better! Natural perfumer Mandy Aftel of Aftelier has just released a new Organic Ylang Face Elixir, which I’ve been sampling this week. It contains organic ylang ylang, a creamy floral blended with bright pink grapefruit and blood orange, both known for their toning and softening properties, in a base of seven organic oils (rice bran, sweet almond, apricot kernel, camellia, grapeseed, squalene and rose hip seed).

When I first became seriously interested in fragrance, and I was smelling as many perfumes as I could in order to define what I liked, I realized that ylang ylang was (and is) one of my favorite floral notes…

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CleanWell All-Natural Hand Sanitizer ~ scented body product review

CleanWell All-Natural Hand Sanitizer Orange VanillaCleanWell All-Natural Hand Sanitizer Original scent

Every day for the past few weeks I’ve glanced at the local newspapers and noticed large-type headlines about a FLU EPIDEMIC. I’m generally healthy, so I didn’t bother getting a flu vaccine; instead, I’m just trying to eat healthily, get enough sleep and wash my hands frequently. For moments when I’m on the move and I can’t get to a sink with hot water and soap, I like to carry a CleanWell All-Natural Hand Sanitizer. It’s not a magic bullet, of course, but it lessens my anxiety about germs from stairway railings, subway poles and any other unsavory surfaces I might have touched.

CleanWell offers a range of liquid hand soaps, cleaning products and disinfectant wipes, but the All-Natural Hand Sanitizer is my favorite. This is a liquid product, packaged in a slim container with a flip top and a spray dispenser; a few spritzes into the palm of a hand gives enough sanitizer for one thorough use…

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25 Rose Fragrances Every Perfumista Should Try

aged roses

A few weeks ago, Robin posted an update to her much-loved post 100 Fragrances Every Perfumista Should Try, adding twenty-five more fragrances worth seeking out. Angela has pitched in with a tempting selection of 25 Vintage Fragrances Every Perfumista Should Try, while Kevin has expanded our view with a list of 50 Masculine Fragrances. And what’s my “beat” here on Now Smell This? I’ve always gravitated towards florals, particularly rose-based perfumes, so I’ll do my part with a run-down of some must-try rose scents.

True roses1

1. Annick Goutal Rose Absolue

Annick Goutal was one of my “gateway” houses into perfume obsession, partially because it offers several rose-inspired fragrances. Rose Absolue is the most “true” rose of the group. It brings together essences of six different roses (May, Turkish, Bulgarian, Damascus, Egyptian, and Moroccan) into a radiant bouquet…

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Aroma: The Magic of Essential Oils in Food & Fragrance ~ perfume books

Aroma, Mandy Aftel and Daniel Patterson

As far as collaborative projects go, perfumer Mandy Aftel and chef Daniel Patterson totally nailed it with Aroma: The Magic of Essential Oils in Food & Fragrance. More of an inspiring manual than a cookbook, the down-to-earth text provides comprehensive information on making fragrance and enhancing food with 27 aromas—from classics like green tea to the intriguing litsea cubeba, distilled from a Chinese fruit.

The brilliance of Aroma is that it provides a good handful of things to do with each featured ingredient, a number of which are readily available at the grocery store. And they’re not all elaborate, hours-in-the-kitchen concoctions, either. In addition to basic dressings and sauces that can be kept for weeks or months, each section begins with simple suggestions for using a fragrance “in the everyday kitchen.” Adding a few dashes of rosewater to frozen strawberries, vodka and seltzer is a particular favorite…

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Take another sniff at that drink

IF you think perfume’s only place is behind the wrist or ear, take another sniff at that drink you just ordered. Scents are starting to show up in martinis, margaritas and much fancier concoctions, thanks in large part to Mandy Aftel [of Aftelier], a former psychotherapist who now makes edible and potable perfumes.

— Read more at Perfumes to Sip as Well as Sniff in the New York Times. Aftel's Chef Essences recently launched at Williams & Sonoma.