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The concept behind Carat, Cartier’s latest feminine launch, is really beautiful. Cartier’s perfumer Mathilde Laurent was inspired by the light of diamonds, specifically how a beam of brilliant light hits the precious stone and is refracted into a full spectrum of colour. With this inspiration she chose to create a floral rainbow – a composition of seven flowers, each of which has been chosen to represent each colour of the rainbow. Isn’t that beautiful? So beautiful, in fact, that I’m not going to say anything more about the fragrance before I jump into the review, simply because nothing could sum it up better.

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I don’t usually make a big thing of Valentine’s Day. In fact, you’d probably be hard-pressed to find much Valentine’s Day-related content here on this blog! There’s no particular reason for this, I guess I’m just for celebrating and sharing the love every single day, not just once per year. But Valentine’s Day is a good opportunity just to send a little bit of a reminder to someone, to let them know that you love them. We all get bogged down in the humdrum normativity of everyday life and we sometimes forget to take a moment to make our special person feel, well, special. So Valentine’s Day is here for that: to let someone know that you love them, and that can only be a good thing.

What better way can there be to say ‘I love you’ than with the gift of fragrance?  None, I tell you. None! Fragrance is such a generous gift. It’s thoughtful, luxurious and incredibly personal. Of course, you could always just get someone their favourite fragrance to top them up but isn’t that a little bit boring? Isn’t Valentine’s Day for being a little bit adventurous and treating your loved one to something new? Something freshly launched? I certainly think so! With that in mind I’ve put together a very quick gift guide (because it’s not long until 14 Feb now, let’s face it) of three fragrances you may want to consider for your loved ones, whether they be a guy, a gal or not fussy about gender labels on their fragrances. So read on for some scented Valentine’s Day gift inspiration!

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Well that was the year that was! 2017 is finally drawing to a close and I think it would be fair to say that it has been a year unlike any other. Perfume-wise, it has been once again, an incredibly busy year, more so than any other in fact, with a big cohort of mainstream brands launching new pillar fragrances this year – the likes of MUGLER, GUERLAIN, CHANEL (all capitalised for some reason) and Hermès, just to name a few. There have been flankers, celebrity scents, and ridiculous bottles aplenty, making for an interesting and fragrant year.

Seeing as the blog had a total makeover in 2017, this year I’ve decided to rejig The Candies a little bit too. Normally I would pick my best feminine, masculine and unisex fragrances from the mainstream and niche arms of the industry however, year-on-year I have found it harder to fit my favourites into these categories. The problem being that nowadays, the gender lines have blurred considerably within the realms of perfume, especially in niche. Also, I’ve said many times that a fragrance has no gender so it seems silly to categorise my awards as such . So this year I’ve simply picked ten fragrances – five mainstream and five niche, that each take the title of the best perfumes of the year, presented in no particular order.

In terms of other changes, there’s now a ‘Top Candy’ which goes to my favourite perfume of the year (it will be a most coveted award, I am sure), and ‘Best Body Product’ has been replaced with ‘Candy Crush of the Year’ to reflect my Candy Crush posts that celebrate my fragrant obsessions throughout the year. Oh and there’s now a ‘House of the Year’ award which goes to my favourite perfume house of the year. That about covers it, so shall we get started then? Yes, let’s! A drumroll please…

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Candy Crushes have been replaced with Christmas Crushes – fragrant gift guides to keep you on track with your gifting this Christmas. This is the final one, solely reserved for those last minute gifts. We better get to it then!

I’m going to keep this brief, folks, because Christmas is just around the corner and if you’re here looking for gift inspiration, you better get a move on because you are running out of time. In this final Christmas Crush post (it’s been emotional, y’all) I’m bringing you three easy gifts that you can still grab before Christmas. I’ve gone for gift sets, because as I always say, you really can never go wrong with a gift set. So, stop panicking, read on and get ready to tick off those final lovelies who are currently languishing on your ‘to buy’ list. Oh, and as always, feel free to treat yourself too whilst you’re at it – because why not?