Aftelier Vanilla Smoke ~ fragrance review

lapsang souchong

Autumn and the scent of smoke seem made for each other. Maybe it’s the nostalgia of the season’s first wood fires, or a taste of peaty Scotch, or the steaming pots of smoky Lapsang Souchong tea that sound so good on a rainy afternoon, but for me it’s hard to separate smoke and November. For that reason, I looked forward to sampling Aftelier Vanilla Smoke.

Not that I didn’t have my concerns. After all, not all smoke is good smoke. Would the smoke be toasty or touched with cumin (like real wood smoke can be) or acrid? Worse, would the vanilla smell like cake batter? Fortunately, with Mandy Aftel we’re in good hands…

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2 for Tuesday: Le Labo The Noir & Nomenclature Iri_del

Quick fragrance reviews of Le Labo Thé Noir 29 and Nomenclature iri_del.

Le Labo Thé Noir 29

Le Labo Thé Noir 29

We all know better by now than to expect anything from the perfume names at niche line Le Labo: they’re named for the note in greatest concentration, NOT for the note that “stars” in the fragrance. And I do know that, but I just can’t help myself. I was hoping for a big black tea (preferably a nicely smoked Earl Grey) from Thé Noir 29 and was consequently disappointed by this fresh, pale amber-y wood with hints of fig and a slight rose-y floral note…

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Scented advent calendars 2015, part 2

We won’t start our “official” series of holiday gift posts until Black Friday, but since advent calendars tend to sell out quickly, we’re posting those early this year. We already did Part 1; today, we’ve another handful of fragrance-related calendars plus one tea calendar and one chocolate calendar. (Please note that many of these calendars are not available in the US. Clearly they like Advent calendars in the UK more than in the US).

Diptyque advent calendar 2015

From Diptyque, a calendar featuring candles, travel sprays and body care. It will reportedly be at Selfridges in the UK in November, £250…

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Bvlgari Eau Parfumee au The Bleu, with an aside on Berdoues Assam of India ~ fragrance reviews

Bvlgari Eau Parfumée au Thé Bleu

Eau Parfumée au Thé Bleu is the fourth fragrance in the tea series at Bvlgari. Thé Bleu was inspired by oolong tea, a semi-fermented tea which is indeed sometimes referred to as blue tea, but the first thing you need to know about Thé Bleu is that perfumer Daniela Andrier‘s composition makes more than a nod to the first in the series (and the first fragrance from Bvlgari), Eau Parfumée au Thé Vert, from perfumer Jean-Claude Ellena. (The others in the newly relaunched series, all now done in frosted glass, are Eau Parfumée au Thé Blanc, from perfumer Jacques Cavallier, and Eau Parfumée au Thé Rouge, from perfumer Olivier Polge.)

So Eau Parfumée au Thé Bleu not only smells like a variation on Thé Vert…

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Guerlain Teazzurra ~ quick & only slightly snarky perfume review with a quick & only slightly snarky poll

Guerlain Teazzura, brand images

Teazzurra is the latest in Guerlain’s Aqua Allegoria series, which used to be a reasonably-priced, youth-oriented range showcasing natural materials. I mostly think of it now as where Guerlain keeps their white-musk-dominated “fresh” scents, as opposed to the sweet gourmands1 and Shalimar flankers that dominate the rest of the brand’s output.

Anyway, Teazzurra is a completely harmless, very fresh tea…

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