It’s that time of year where we all start to put together our Christmas wish lists for Santa, or as I like to call him – ‘Nigel’. Being the perfume nuts that we are means that beloved family and friends can sometimes struggle to pick fragrances out as gifts for us, after all we’re a selective (read: ‘picky’) bunch by nature and nobody would want us to open up a gift that we would deem as unsuitable on the big day.
To mitigate the chances of a botched perfume purchase at Christmas I supply a perfume wish list to my partner and my father every year. The other members of my family family flatly refuses to buy me any perfume, stating that I have “too much” and it’s “bordering on an obsession”. Who knows what they’re smoking, but I can always rely on my dad and Nigel (if he’s in a good mood) to pick something from my carefully selected list.
In case you hadn’t noticed it is officially the month of Movember (yes I’m going to continue to bang on about it) and for the next four weeks The Candy Perfume Boy will be undergoing a masculine takeover. We’ll be looking at some new masculine scents as well as some of my personal go-to gentleman’s fragrances, whilst on Escentual I’ll be running a series of ‘Movember Masculines’ – taking a look at some of the best men’s fragrances on the market.
The first instalment in these moustachey masculines is a review of Guerlain’s Habit Rouge (the EDT) - a perfume that needs little introduction. To me, this particular man-scent is incredibly versatile and works as well on an equestrian in full livery as it does on a hip, leather jacket wearing man of today. Please click on the image above to head on over Escentual and read my thoughts on one of Guerlain’s very best fragrances.
As you may be aware, I do like a good ‘guide to‘, and one of the luxuries bestowed to me by the wonderful people at Escentual, is that I get to not only write my guide to notes series here on the TCPB, but I also get to create a number of guides for a range of perfume genres too. So far we’ve taken a look at the humble Chypre, a genre of perfume that is aloof and mysterious and this week’s post takes a look at another famed style of perfumery.
This week the focus is on the mysterious and exotic world of the Oriental. Much like last time, I have picked three fragrances to represent the evolution of the genre – from the classic to the modern and the contemporary. So, if you are looking for a bite-size guide to the Oriental then all you need to do is simply click on the image above to head on over to Escentual!
The Candy Perfume Boy’s Guide to series is an olfactory exploration of individual notes and ingredients that looks at the essential perfumes one must try as part of their fragrant journey. Each episode focuses on a particular note and lists the reference perfumes (i.e. the ‘must sniffs’) within that particular genre.
So far in the series we’ve explored the worlds of; Tuberose, Lavender, Oud, Orange Blossom and Chocolate. Up until now the ‘Guide to’ series has been relatively sporadic but moving forward, the intention is to schedule instalments for the beginning of each quarter – therefore suggestions on which note/genre to explore next are most welcome.
This episode takes a look at the humble violet – a genre that doesn’t quite get the exposure that it deserves. It’s a note that is more likely to be associated with the stiff upper lip of Victorian Britain than the contemporary world of modern perfumery but a number of perfume houses are making solid efforts to change this perception and are making pretty fantastic perfumes along the way.
Guerlain sure know how to make a pretty bottle don’t they? They are, after all the people who brought us iconic housings for fragrances such as Shalimar, Insolence and La Petite Robe Noire. This one, created to celebrate the grand re-opening of their newly renovated boutique at no. 68 on the Champs-Élysées is most certainly befitting of one of the city’s most famous and wonderfully fragrant addresses.
Housing ‘Le Parfum du 68‘, a tweaked version of the brand’s respectable Cologne du 68 from 2006, the classic Baccarat ‘turtle’ bottle is adorned with a gilded Parisian scene created by Ateliers Gohard. Unfortunately only 30 bottles will be produced and one dreads to even think how much it would cost, still it’s rather lovely to dream, isn’t it?
Desert Island Sniffs may only be a fledgling series on The Candy Perfume Boy but it is already becoming this blogger’s absolute favourite. Exploring a life through scent is a fascinating way to understand what makes an individual tick and those that are working within the perfume industry live perhaps the most fragrant and intriguing lives of them all.
If you’re not familiar with the series (you can find other episodes here), the concept is simple; each month one prominent member of the perfume industry is asked to select 5 perfumes that they would take with them should they unfortunately be marooned on a desert island – their ‘Desert Island Sniffs’.
The perfumes they choose should be those that have had a significant impact on their scented lives and map specific points in their journey of olfactory discovery. In addition to their 5 Desert Island Sniffs one is kind enough to allow them to take a luxury item (only one, mind) and a ‘perfume bible’ to keep them company. By the end of this series there is going to be some rather fabulously smelling desert islands out there!
Guerlain has released a beautiful movie for its flagship fragrance Shalimar. Running at a length of just under 6 minutes and featuring Russian model Natalia Vodianova, the glorious epic tells the story of a love like no other and the inspiration for Guerlain’s iconic fragrance – the legend of Shah Jahan and Mumtaz Mahal.
With its breathtaking visuals and sweeping soundtrack La Légende de Shalimar (directed by Bruno Aveillan) truly is a feast for the senses that is perfectly befitting for a fragrance that speaks of a romance that transcends time and space. What do you think?
One of my favourite past times is listening to Radio 4’s longstanding series ‘Desert Island Discs’. If you’re not familiar with the concept, the premise is simple: a famous face or person of interest is shipwrecked on a desert island with eight records of their choice. The idea being that the person tells the story of their life through the songs that have made a significant impact on who they are today.
It has long been my belief that scent, much like music, allows us to travel back in time and experience moments past – moments that have influenced, changed and shaped us in to the human beings we have become. This series (nattily entitled ‘Desert Island Sniffs’) looks to explore the way perfume has influenced the lives of prominent members of the perfume industry.
For Desert Island Sniffs my castaways will be asked to present five perfumes that have had a significant impact on their life – scents that are so important they would be the ones they’d pack if they were unfortunately marooned on a remote desert island. Along with their five perfume choices my castaways are entitled to one luxury item and a ‘perfume bible’ of their choice.
When I first started getting in to perfume I, like many others, spent a decent amount of time lurking the Basenotes forums and learning that there is just so much more perfume out there than one would think. During my months of discovery I came across the word ‘niche’ for the very first time and back then my understanding was that ‘niche’ described ‘special’ and ‘artisanal’ perfume – descriptions that may not be applicable today.
My first experience with niche perfume was with CREED, a brand that has many fans and many detractors, and it was a decant of Silver Mountain Water that opened my eyes to the startling fact that perfume could smell unusual. Whatever your opinion is of the CREED dynasty it is hard to deny that they have made a number of rather decent perfumes – Silver Mountain Water being one and Green Irish Tweed, Millesime Imperial and Virgin Island Water being others – and whilst I may have not paid the brand much mind over the last few years I cannot deny that they have a knack for creating classic and elegant perfumes.
CREED’s latest offering is Millesime 1849, a perfume that has been launched to commemorate the birth date of London’s premiere shopping destination Harrods – a place that is as much as tourist attraction as it is a department store. Millesime 1849 aims to capture the spirit of one of London’s most famous addresses and the “imperial epoch which inspires its name, as well as the glorious reign of Victoria”.
The heatwave is finally here and as we all enjoy (or suffer in) the heat now is a good time to pull out those fragrances that refresh, revitalise & defeat the blazing heat of the sun and stuffy, humid air. It’s a time where perfume can be your greatest weapon when attempting to conquer the unrelenting enthusiasm of the sun.
My Escentual Post last week looked at two new releases that are perfect for summer (Guerlain Nerolia Bianca and Dior Homme Cologne 2013) and it got me thinking about those fragrances that I swear by in the summer – or as i like to call them: ‘my summer survival scents’.
Some days it seems almost too hot to do anything, but these scents can be an essential part of your summer survival kit. All you need is some cooling citrus, a few fresh fancies, a couple of manly mints and a generous dose of flowers and fruit, and you’ll be all set to tackle the heatwave of 2013!