Bjork

I enjoyed scenting The Muppets so much that I’ve decided to create an entire series of celebrity-based perfume posts ingeniously entitled the ‘Scent a Celebrity Series’. Celebrities are a funny bunch that on the whole cannot be trusted in the world of perfume, you only need to look at the shelves of your local department store for proof of this, and I’m thinking they could do with a fair bit of scented help from yours truly.

Celebrity culture can at times be incredibly frustrating and for that reason this series isn’t simply a ‘what would they wear’ feature, I only want to focus on those celebrities that I admire, the ones with true talent, charisma and purpose. You will not find the cast of The Only Way is Essex and Jersey Shore here, nor will you find such sucky-celebrities as Paris Hilton or Justin Bieber. No way. Instead you will find MY celebrities, the ones that I love and to kick of the series I have chosen to scent one of my absolute favourites – Björk.

I love Björk. This is a fact that many of my friends and family don’t quite understand. “She’s weird!” they shout, “when she sings she sounds like an angry walrus kicking a dolphin.” But I do not rise to these silly comments because I am in the know, I ‘get’ Björk, I know that she is nothing short of a musical genius. Don’t believe me? Simply take yourself off to a dark room and listen to her Vespertine album and you will be converted. Go on, off you pop, you may return once you have finished.

Philippine

“I love a perfume that makes me smile – Fils de Dieu brings the smiles, and plenty of them”

Despite their often hyper-sexed and occasionally misdirected marketing techniques, Etat Libre d’Orange are one of the most solid niche brands out there. They offer a line of well made, interesting, unusual and affordable fragrances that simply cannot be matched. The Etat Libre d’Orange war cry is “Parfum est mort, vive le parfum” (“perfume is dead, long live perfume”) and they are going a very long way to resurrect the concept of fun into the landscape of modern perfumery, a landscape that can so often become devoid of any delight.

I have said many times before that I am a self-proclaimed Etat Libre d’Orange fanboy, I simply cannot help it, I find their compositions to be filled with humour, occasional, nay regular genius, surprise and wonder. Each one is an essay in pushing the boundaries of perfume, turning familiar genres on their heads and firmly sticking two figures up at the bland, the trite and the cheap.

Fils de Dieu or ‘Fils de Dieu Du Riz et Des Agrumes’ (Son of God of Rice and Citrus Fruits) to use its full name is one of two latest releases from everyone’s favourite French olfactory freedom fighters, the other being Bijou Romantique. It was created by Ralf Schwieger and the concept behind it is interesting to say the least. Also available under the more controversial name of ‘Philippine Houseboy’, Fils de Dieu “is the golden eye that reflects beauty and conflict, rapture and pain. It is an emotional fragrance that requires a sympathetic connection between the server and the served, the giver and the taker, and the willingness to exchange roles.” [1]

Mad Scientist

The Mad Perfume Scientist

‘Layering’ – the practice of layering two fragrance compositions to create weird and wonderful combinations, has always seemed completely alien to me. I have always enjoyed the fragrances in my collection exactly the way they were created (I wouldn’t have bought them otherwise) and have never felt the need to try and improve or change them by adding something new.

Despite my skepticism, layering seems to be something that a lot of perfume-lovers do and enjoy. Some brands, such as Jo Malone, even actively encourage the practice of layering with their fragrances. These ‘layering’ combinations are designed to enhance the perfume experience, but I can’t help but feel that they are just a cheap ploy with the sole intent of convincing consumers to buy extra bottles.

Despite my skepticism, this layering malarky got me thinking (a dangerous habit, I know); is there any real merit to mixing perfumes? and; Can you actually enhance a perfume by layering it with another? So, in the interest of science I thought that I would conduct a few layering experiments to see whether there is any merit to it, or whether it’s just a bunch of phooey.

Perfume Genius - Learning

10 Things I have Learned on my Journey to Becoming a ‘Perfume Genius’*

‘Learning’ is a phrase that I never seem to be too far away from. I work in Human Resources but I have a lot of input, experience and training in ‘Learning and Development’. As part of my studies I am required to record my development within a ‘Learning Log’ and I do very much believe in the old idiom ‘you learn something new every day. So yes, it seems that I cannot escape the word learning, but I’m not complaining, I love to learn.

Obviously my favourite thing to learn about is perfume. and my scented journey through the world of perfume has so far been an excellent experience. I have learned so much about scent, but still feel that I’ve barely touched the surface, there really is so much to learn after all.

Bling Bling Baby

Death by bling! ARGH.

I like to think that The Candy Perfume Boy is a blog that celebrates the more positive side of perfume and I also like to think that I’m quite a happy-go-lucky guy by nature. But I would be lying if I said that there weren’t aspects of perfume and the perfume industry that I find irksome. In fact there are quite a few things that seem to irk this usually sweet perfume boy.

Maybe I’m not the only one too, maybe there are things that get on your nerves that you would like to share. I firmly believe that it’s good to share and perhaps the ensuing discussion may act as some form of ‘group therapy’ that would be mutually beneficial for all.

The following 5 bug bears/pet hates/irksome details/nark inducers are of course not intended as a major criticism of the perfume industry, they are instead a light hearted attempt at poking fun at a few annoying little habits.

Wardrobe

Last weekend, after much nagging from my long-suffering partner, I decided to have a tidy of my perfume collection and samples box. Now, anyone who knows me well will be fully aware that tidying is not really something I do very often, in fact, it is something that I avoid at all costs.

Anyway, during my tidy up, I totalled up the number of perfume bottles in my collection and I was genuinely shocked when I came to the nice round number of 120. “How can I have so much perfume, I never feel like I have enough choice” I thought, “Do I really need so much?” and “Do I feel like I don’t know what to wear because I have too much choice?”

This led me to think in depth about my collection of fragrances, what would I choose if I were to reduce its size considerably?

Medicine

If like me, you’re fed up with the constant wave of flankers (please see my review of the two new CK One flankers) then I hope you will take this post as some kind of remedy, a tonic if you will. I could spend hours and hours moaning about how I hate flankers and name and shame some of the worst, that would be very easy, and not entirely true. What I would like to do instead is just make a few personal recommendations of what I think are some of the best.

What is a Flanker?

Most of you reading this blog will be familiar with flankers but for those who aren’t; a flanker is essentially a fragrance released using the same (or similar) name as another fragrance by the same house, think of it as a sort of sequel, so for example; Live Jazz is a flanker to the original Jazz by Yves Saint Laurent. The actual juice can be very similar, slightly similar or completely unrelated to the original fragrance.

Flankers are a cheap way of marketing a new fragrance without having to spend a huge amount of money on new concepts, bottle moulds and advertising. They are also a great way of marketing a ‘new’ product to consumers who are already fans of the original fragrance.

Not all flankers are bad, some brands use the opportunity to create a new interpretation of an established fragrance and these tend to be the flankers that work best, they bring something new and interesting to the table.

Firecracker Cupcake

We all have them, those things that we know we shouldn’t love but we secretly do. I have lots of guilty pleasures, whether they be food, fragrance, music, movies or TV shows, there are lots of things that I know are a bit naff but I love them regardless.

There are so many fragrances on the market and us perfumistas are constantly on the search for the great fragrances, the ones that smell so good we just cannot live without them. It’s a long ongoing journey and along the way we find the bad, the dull, the weird, the downright hideous and of course the guilty pleasures.

So what exactly is a guilty pleasure perfume? Well to me they are those fragrances that you know are bad because they are a dreadful celebuscent or the quality of the composition (or both) or because they are painfully mainstream, but you still like them anyway.

When putting this post together there was one fragrance that instantly came to mind….