Saturday, April 14, 2012

Quick spritzes

View through my window on April 14, 2012

Look at the photo, that was the view outside my window a few hours ago. It has snowed ever since so now there's a 5 inch layer of snow covering everything. Spring just doesn't seem to be happening this year :(

But, fortunately, perfume does happen! About a month ago I discovered that hidden in the ugly mall next to where I take the train to and from work there are not one, but two small perfumeries. Thay both have a very basic mainstream selection, but still, they are there, just when I need a little pick-me-up-spritz after a long day of heavy thinking.

And yesterday I discovered this bus behind the house where I work, it basically takes me door to door in 5 minutes to NK, the department store with the biggest selection of niche scents here in Stockholm (it's not the nicest store, that's COW Parfymeri, but it is the biggest). So now, at any time when things at work seem to be going ugly, I just hang on to the thought that when my shift ends I'll be mere minutes away from drenching myself in good smelling juice, all for free, and then just drift away in the fumes and be happy :)

So these are some of the scents I've tried lately. My opinions here are all based on one times spritzes in stores and should not be taken as serious reviews. I've ordered them from "love at first sniff" to "worse than horrid".

L'Artisan La Chasse aux Papillons. Happy, playful and lovely mix of tuberose, jasmine and orange flowers. I hadn't expected to like it so much but it seemd to get right into my smiley reflexes after a long tedious work week, lifting both my mood and spirit. I'll be trying it again very soon and, so far, I think it's FB worthy!

Lanvin Arpège. A bright floral with a classical feel to it. Aldehydic at first, then jasmine and lilies of the valley. Felt like a great spring or early summer scent (or when you're just longing for spring very much). Must also try again soon! 

Chanel Cristalle Eau Verte. Reminds me of a very watered down version of Bandit. I get greenery and a hint of leathery rubber. It's nice, but I rather just wear Bandit.

Prada Prada (Amber). A perfectly good amber. If I ws looking for a typical amber in a pinch I might very well get this one.

Chanel No 19. A scent widely loved in the parfumista community. I do think very well put together, long lasting, distinct etc etc, but as I do admire it, unfortunately I can't bring myself to love it.

Stella McCartney L.I.L.Y. A clean floral with an aquatic feel about itself. Does it make you smell good? Yes. Does it make you smell interesting? No.

Chanel Allure Eau de Parfum. A mainstream peachy fruity floral with a vanilla base. Hm, probably smells great if you don't know what's more out there.

Viktor and Rolf Flowerbomb. A nightmare! I hadn't been reading up and thus expected a big blast of white flowers, based on the name. What did I get? Cloying burnt sugar from its very worst side. The only good thing I've got to say is that it washed off gracefully, so at least, thanks for that.


  1. Does it make you smell good, Yes. Does it make you smell interesting, NO!
    I love it and will be stealing this line a LOT!!!
    Portia xx

  2. And now I'm here reading your interesting post instead of just starting the tax declaration excersise :-) About small perfumeries: Nice that you found these two because almost all of the smaller ones seems to have to close down driven out from the market by the perfumestore chains. In the mall not far away from my office there is a perfumerie with a "better" selection of mainstreams and some uncommon as Caron that is closing down this month. Thereafter there is just the usual Kicks left in that mall. Even if NK and COW is great steps ahead to swedish conditions, I have found that the local quater parfumerie in a rather nearby city as Hamburg, has a greater selction.

  3. How lovely to have some perfumeries so close by. Some of that list I'd be able to smell at the local drugstore, and everything else but the L'Artisan (a line I wish was carried in my region) in the nearby Big City. Your impressions sound similar to mine.

    Does it help to know we had a massive blizzard here on the 12th? I'll sit over by you and lament that spring still hasn't come here either.

  4. Parfumista, are we talking about the same mall here? One of the stores IS closing down (sadly), and the other one is a KICKS (I know, calling it a perfumerie is stretching things, but, well, they do sell perfume). I work at Karlavägen and the mall I'm referring to is Fältöversten. If you work here as well we should meet up for lunch some day!!

  5. Dionne, I do sometimes complain about the lack of perfume lore in Sweden, but at least I'm lucky enough to live in the capital city so whenever I manage to get some time to myself down town there is an ok range of great scents to choose from :) Where about do you live?

  6. I can just picture you sniffing in NK! My friend from Sodermalm took me and I went back on my own a few times, so I can visualise the fixtures, if they haven't switched them around too much lately. : - )

    They have a much better selection vs Ahlens, that's for sure, but COW is still top dog for niche...

  7. Hi Sigrun, it's really a small world :-) Of course I'm referring to Fältan and I'm also working in the neigbourhood on a side street to Valhallavägen. It would be very nice to meet up for a lunch soon. I send you a mail!

  8. I love this picture! So pretty. (Not pretty enough to make me wish for snow, but very pretty.) :)

    I also love your quick takes on all of these. But especially Flowerbomb, since I tend to like really harsh, direct comments on perfumes I wear. I do wear Flowerbomb and completely agree that it is an "experience." For me, a positive one. But my trick is that it smells best from a radius of about two or three feet away, so I apply it behind my knees. Any closer to my nose, and there is a 50% chance I will want to die halfway through the day.

    1. I've heard that people sometimes apply perfume behind their knees, but it hasn't made any sense to me until I read your comment. It sounds like a very smart way to wear fragrances that you for some reason don't want close to your face.

      I'll probably try Flowerbomb again, sooner or later. At least now I know what to expect, which will help me see what's really there and not just the difference to what I was expecting :)

    2. Try Spicebomb instead! :) I like it MUCH more than a FB (sorry, Natalie).

      What a beautiful picture! I realize that you're tired of it but for me, who hasn't seen snow in more than two years, it looks nice.

  9. Vanessa, yes, those spots pretty much sums up where to get perfume here. When you visited, was the Byredo flagship store up? It's situated just across the street from COW and it's of course great if you like Byredo :)

  10. Parfumista, that's great, I'm so looking forward to meet you :) I've sent you a mail, my network is behaving very funny (as in not funny at all) at the moment so if you don't get it, tell me and I'll try sending again tomorrow!

  11. FF, I live in Western Canada, just east of the Canadian Rockies.

  12. Haha, I can't handle FBomb either! On the other hand, I rather love Allure and No19... :) I like to sniff randomly too - it cheers me right up! Even things I don't like...I guess the point is to smell something that makes you go "whoa..."

  13. It cheers me up as well! I get so stimulated and energized when I've had an opportunity to go sniffing around a bit. Just as you say, it doesn't have to be good, interesting does go a long way :)