31 December, 2015

Signature Perfumes Through Different Stages of My Life

Ever since I could remember, I've always enjoyed indulging my senses, one of which is the sense of smell. Perhaps that's because I'm a Taurus.

It never ceases to amaze me whenever a woman tells me that she has worn the same perfume her entire life. I love the idea of a signature scent, and while I do tend to wear only one or two perfumes at a time, they never last for more than a few years because as my life circumstances change, so would my personality and preferences.

From the ages of 13-15: Lancome's Poeme. While my peers were wearing other more age-appropriate scents (I'm going to guess that they were The Body Shop's White Musk, and Bath & Body Work's Cucumber Melon or Sun Ripened Raspberry), I was rocking Lancome's Poeme -- a romantic Floral-Oriental that was marketed toward women much older than 12.

Poeme was a very "yellow" perfume, in that it contained predominantly notes of mimosa, mandarin, and amber; the perfume smelled like the colors of those notes.

It also contained "blue Himalayan poppy," which was a fantasy note. Thus, I had no point of reference and still to this day, have no idea what "blue Himalayan poppy" is supposed to smell like. To my nose, Poeme was a sweet, sanguine, narcotic perfume that was highly addictive. It was warm, yet not heavy; light, yet not weak. It truly was a romantic perfume and deserving of its name.

The bottle was an abstract interpretation of the butterfly.

Age 22: J.Lo's Live.
Live was definitely the first modern Fruity-Oriental (berries blended with woods, patchouli, etc.) that we're familiar with now (think CK's Euphoria, MJ's Lola, JC's Viva La Juicy). While these aforementioned perfumes don't sound exciting or new to us in this day and age, just remember that ten years ago, there really wasn't anything else like Live.

In fact, Live smelled so unique that I met my then-best friend because she followed me for a short distance before asking, "Hi, what perfume are you wearing? You smell amazing!"
I pulled out my gorgeous bottle of Live and held it up to the sun to show her its color-changing ability. Okay, the bottle didn't actually change color, but its stained glass effect made it look as though it did.

I don't typically go for celebrity fragrances because they tend to lack personality, but I find that Jennifer Lopez puts a lot of her heart into the creation of each perfume, and the results tend to be impressive.

Ages 23-26: Jean Patou's Joy; Annick Goutal's Ce Soir Ou Jamais; Chanel's Coco Mademoiselle; Jo Malone Nectarine Blossoms and Honey; People of the Labyrinths' Luctor et Emergo.

Yep, those were some interesting years, for sure. Jean Patou's Joy was a glorious blend of jasmine from Grasse, and red roses from Bulgaria. It was a luscious, sumptuous, full-bodied perfume that smelled very obviously expensive. For some reason, I never repurchased my bottle once it was used up, but if Joy was given to me today, I would gladly accept.

Ahhh, the magical Ce Soir Ou Jamais (French for "Tonight or Never"), from the perfume house of Annick Goutal. This was a perfect fresh daytime rose scent that I was looking for at the time. To my nose, Ce Soir Ou Jamais was a refreshing yet long-lasting blend of crisp, juicy green pear and pink rose petals.

Annick Goutal had wanted to create a perfume like this for years, but she was afraid that people weren't going to accept it, so she put her plan on hold. When she was diagnosed with cancer, she decided to just follow her heart and release the perfume because she might never get the chance again, and named it Ce Soir ou Jamais. Annick Goutal passed away from cancer in 1999, at the age of 53.

Coco Mademoiselle -- what else is there to be said? Definitely a modern classic that has been a bestseller since its launch in 2001. This blend of orange blossom and patchouli will withstand the test of time, just trust me. While Kiera Knightley is its current spokesperson, my favorite will always be Kate Moss because she is the perfect representation of Rock 'n' Roll-Glamour.

Nectarine Blossom and Honey smelled just like its name: refreshing white petals, supported by the powdery sweetness of honey. Too bad it wasn't very long-lasting, and at $60 for a 30mL (1 oz) bottle of cologne-grade (97% alcohol, 3% fragrance), I felt that it was highway robbery. I get an almost the same scent from CK One, which is more long-lasting, has more personality, and along with artistic merit.

Luctor et Emergo (Latin for "I struggle and I emerge") blew my mind the first time I smelled it. Created by The People of the Labyrinths back in the '90s, this timeless Oriental still manages to retain its mystique. Smelling this, I imagined that I was on a magic carpet ride, just because it was so exotic and mysterious. Luctor et Emergo is a beautiful blend of cherry, almond, dragon's blood (a resin with a sweet and slightly smokey scent), sweet grasses, and other exotic spices. Beautiful.

Presently: The People of the Labyrinths' Luctor et Emergo; Guerlain's Shalimar; YSL's Black Opium; Calvin Klein's CK One; Tommy Hilfiger's Tommy Girl.

Yes, Luctor et Emergo has earned its permanent spot in my heart! I figured, if I am still enjoying it after all these years, then it must means that this perfume is something special.

I recently made a blog post for Shalimar, singing songs of praises. You may read that one HERE.

YSL's Black Opium, to me, is like a deeper Shalimar. Think of Shalimar with a bite to it. Black Opium is a blend of black coffee, vanilla, orange blossom, and sandalwood. It smells very deep and mysterious, yet also youthful at once. The scent of black leather jacket, red lipstick, and loud guitar riffs.

CK One makes me feel so happy whenever I spray it on. No matter how bad of a mood that I am in, a few spritzes here and there will instantly lift it up. Prior to its launch in 1994, unisex perfumes were not a very well-known or widely accepted concept. Then, CK One came along and became an instant classic. This blend will never go out of style because you can wear it at any point in time, and will always fit in. CK One is predominantly a gorgeous blend of sparkling lime, white rose petals, and sandalwood. Bright yet smooth at the same time, CK One is perfection.

Tommy Girl, oh, Tommy Girl! This (along with CK One) is American perfumery at its best. Everything about this is just so quintessentially American that upon smelling it, you would immediately think of blue jeans, white button-up cotton shirt, tan leather saddle bag, and freshly shampooed, free-flowing, air-dried hair. To my nose, Tommy Girl smells like zesty ginger, aromatic freshly brewed green tea, and fresh cut grass. It's such a free-spirited scent that I couldn't help but fall in love with it.

What have been your signature perfumes over the years?
If you have a blog, feel free to leave a link with your comment; I'd love to visit! :o)


  1. My signature perfume changes so much .. lol depends on mood , season ect,


    1. Oh, I totally know what you mean, lol. Basically, I have signatures for hot and warm weathers.

  2. These are all such great fragrances! Happy New year I hope you have a great 2016

    Candice | Beauty Candy Loves

    1. Awww, I hope that you had a fun New Year's Eve! Thanks for stopping by!

  3. Oh lol the perfume memories. I remember wearing Joy and liking it. I used to sneak my mother's Shalimar and I hated CK One. I never became a fan of unisex fragrances.

    1. Lol. Oh, no, so sorry to hear that you didn't like CK One, haha.

  4. love the jo malone one! :D great scents!

    Happy New Year!
    Animated Confessions

  5. Wow, THANK YOU for this post! I've actually been looking for a new perfume (I'm 21) and have no idea where to even start. There's just so many out there, and I get overwhelmed! I'm gonna try finding "Live"!~
    Junniku blog! (What I got for Christmas)

    1. I hope that you've tried "Live" by now! If not, then soon. It is a gorgeous perfume. :o)

  6. you described these perfumes very well. Honestly, you make me wana go out and buy every single one to try it... there really is nothing more sexy than when you smell good is there! xx http://lovejoystyles.com

    1. Awww, thank you so much for your kind comment. Definitely spend an afternoon at the mall to smell some perfume! :o)

  7. That are a lot of nice perfumes you've been wearing! :) Happy New Year!

    Sarah x


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