30 October, 2013

Chic 101: Lesson 5 -- The Perfect Perfume for You

When I was in high school, I had friends who had great tastes when it came to perfumes, despite our young age. While many of the other girls were running around with Bath & Body Works' Cucumber Melon or, at best, Clinique Happy, my friends were already in the big league. For example, Paola wore Poison; Jessica wore J'Adore, while Marissa wore Amarige, and they all smelled magnificent. On Paola, Poison smelled like deep, dark black grapes drenched in exotic spices; J'Adore smelled like creamy-honey-and-soft-spicy-florals on Jessica, and Amarige smelled like peppery-vanilla-woods on Marissa.

Although we were still teenagers, my friends wore their scents effortlessly, instead of looking like little girls playing dress-up in their grandmothers' enormous fur coats.

I loved how the perfumes smelled on my friends, but none of those scents smelled the same on me: Poison smelled like rancid wine; J'Adore smelled like a wishy-washy, forgetable floral, and Amarige smelled like vanilla extract diluted in water, with a few drops of cheap floral cologne thrown in. Not only that, but I also felt that they didn't fit me. In fact, they felt like those hand-me-downs that may have fit me size-wise, but not taste-wise. I was sorely disappointed because I wanted to smell beautiful, too, until I realized -- these perfumes smelled beautiful on my friends because they were "their" scents, and I needed to seek out my own.

So, how do you know when a scent is right for you?

More after the jump. 

I have a few ideas (also known as, lessons that I've learned the hard way):

1) You should not feel distracted by the perfume you wear.

2) The right perfume should make you feel like it is a part of you, not standing apart from you.

3) You should feel that your look-of-the-day is completed by the perfume, instead of feeling as though the scent is a burdensome piece of jewelry that is clicking-clacking around on your body, wearing you down.

4) Sample, sample, sample. Do not settle. Do not buy the scent even if you are only 1% unsure about it, because that will soon grow to 5%, and before you know it -- 20%, and it'll just keep growing, and you might find yourself not even wanting to reach for it anymore. That's money going down the drain right there.

To conclude my perfumed saga, the next few years were full of experimentation, hopes and disappointments, along with a few incidents of, "Sweet Baby Jesus, what is this disturbing concoction that I am smelling?!"

Of the above, I would say that hopes and disappointments were the worst. You know how it is: You discover a new product, use it and think to yourself, "Hey, maybe this is Holy Grail material!"
Only to realize, maybe not even three days later, that it just isn't for you.

Eventually, I discovered Coco Mademoiselle at some point in college back in 2006, which is still my favorite perfume for Fall to this day. I was intrigued when I saw the ad with Kate Moss featured in it (who looked absolutely beautiful), and fell in love with the scent strip. I promptly sought out a sample, and the rest is history. On me, Coco Mademoiselle is a smooth, harmonized blend of ripened mandarin peel, patchouli, and peppery spices that are slightly reminiscent of black tea. The notes play well together on my skin, instead of competing, and I never once felt that I was donning a costume while wearing the perfume. I am so happy that I have a scent of my own. Well, at least for the Fall season.

What perfume are you wearing for this Fall? How long have you had it? What do you love most about this perfume?

Where to buy:

Chanel Coco Mademoiselle, J'Adore, Poison, and Amarige can be purchased at Nordstrom

Note: If you don't already have an Ebates.com account, I highly recommend it, as you get a percentage of your money back for every purchase you make online. Click here to sign up if you haven't yet.

The Coco Mademoiselle featured in this entry was paid for by me. This blog entry contains affiliate links.

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  1. I'm a huge fan of perfume and I would love to find a Chanel scent that works for me, but unfortunately they're not my cup of tea, and the only one I like is worn by my sister in law... oh well, you win some, you lose some :o). Xx


    1. Ahhh, I understand. That’s what always happens to me with Guerlain fragrances, which I blame on the “Guerlain juice.” A lot of old (ahem, “classic”) perfume houses have a signature scent that seems to be in all of their fragrances, including Chanel – which is why all Chanel perfumes have that tell-tale, distinct Chanel smell to it. I call that the “Chanel juice.” Lol.

  2. Where do you find the samples? I totally agree with tour tips but I can never find the samples of the perfumes I'd like to try, so I get afraid and have never bought a perfume forma myself :(

  3. Great post Tammy , Strong fragrance gives me headache hence I prefer something mild and feminine. Haven't tried one from Chanel yet but will try one very soon :))

  4. Great post Tammy , Strong fragrance gives me headache hence I prefer something mild and feminine. Haven't tried one from Chanel yet but will try one very soon :))


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