fragrance

Barbara Orbison Pretty Woman Perfume Review

Barbara Orbison Pretty Woman EDP

Barbara Orbison has launched Pretty Woman, an oriental perfume with rich florals, spices, and smoky woods. This is a rich, warm fragrance that wears and wears. This lasting power of this fragrance beats my pure parfum of Guerlain Shalimar!

You guys know I love smoky, spicy fragrances. Barbara Orbison Pretty Woman is a smoky, spicy oriental. The fragrance is spicy but not from things one would find in their kitchen. It has spice from stargazer lily and carnation, slightly peppery and clove-like but still floral sweet. These florals also have a cedar woodiness to them as well. The peppery florals wear on me for a while, mixing with creamy, resiny amber. During a short time during “mid” wear, I pick up on wet, fresh rose. It somehow manages to add a slight greenness/freshness right before the fragrance gets “smoky”. The dry-down is smoky and woodsy. I love how it attaches itself to my skin. It’s contemplative because of the spiritual incense smokiness,  but very sensual too. The dry-down has many things that I love: ambery incense smoke, crisp cedar, woodsy patchouli, and creamy vanilla.  Something about the entire fragrance is a bit “romantic gothic”. This fragrance is more than a “pretty woman”. In my opinion, it’s a “bewitching woman”. She’s beautiful, mysterious, sagacious, and yes, complicated. This is a femme fatale fragrance. It reminds me of a bewitching woman wrapped in a velvet robe lounging on a chaise or a film noir dame smoking a cigarette, half of her face peaking through the dark shadows.

I really like this fragrance because I like intense spicy, incense fragrances. This scent is not for everyone. It’s “heavy” and it has sillage. The lasting power is wonderful. I’m talking 12+ hours of steady wear. I’m talking it’s on until you bathe. I see myself wearing this frequently in the fall and winter. It’s a “warm” fragrance. I see this as a fragrance that you’ll love or you’ll hate. That’s how dark, moody, spicy, woodsy, oriental fragrances are. I also find that people either love or hate fragrances with sillage. I’ve sampled the EDP and it wears like a pure parfum. * A friend of mine, a retired woman who spends all of her time and money on traveling, glasswares, wine, Chanel Vamp pedicures, and perfume sampled this and loved it. She often wears Prada Intense, Original Dolce & Gabbana, and Tom Ford White Patchouli.

Roy and Barbara Orbison 1970
Roy and Barbara Orbison circa 1970

I need to add that Barbara Orbison (who’s even more beautiful now than she was 40 years ago) was married to Roy Orbison. Roy Orbison is one of my favorite musicians ever. So, the name in itself makes me happy, but I don’t think the juice is as upbeat as the song “Pretty Woman”. This fragrance reminds me of Roy’s heartbroken love songs such as “Crying”,  his vulnerable voice echoing through a dark, smoky venue. This is a heartbreaker fragrance.  I can’t get away from my Nashville upbringing. I wear cowboy boots, red lipstick, and use lots of hairspray. Over half of my LPs are Western Swing and Country Western (the other darkwave or Morrissey). I’m very familiar with heartbreaking love songs 🙂 Nice to have a fragrance from the area. It makes me a bit homesick.

Notes listed include: bergamot, stargazer lily, red rose, carnation, amber, patchouli, atlas cedar, and sacred incense.

Give this fragrance a try if you like smoky incense fragrances that are on the feminine end of the spectrum or if you like fragrances such as Comme des Garcons Incense Series, Tom Ford White Patchouli, Tom Ford Black Orchid, Trish McEvoy Precious Oud, Prada EDP, i Profumi di Firenze Mirra , Crazylibellule & The Poppies Encens Mystic, Cartier Le Baiser du Dragon  Dolce & Gabbana Original  and/or Miller Harris Fleur Oriental. There are many fragrances like this. My husband doesn’t understand why I like Pretty Woman so much because it isn’t a “ground-breaking” oriental. He says “it’s nice but you have so many incense fragrances” (all the ones listed above). He’s right, I do have many cedar and/or amber heavy incense fragrances in my perfume collection, but the entire point is that is what I like. These are “me”. I don’t care if I have 15 others. I like what I like and I’ll add 15 more. He has 10 grey Banana Republic t-shirts, so whatever.

I really do like this fragrance and I find it difficult to explain why. I think I like the carnation but I  have limited exposure to carnation and stargazer lily fragrances. Has anyone else tried this one? Do you have any carnation fragrance recommendations for me? I also have limited exposure to stargazer lily fragrances. My neighbor says “stargazer lilies smell wonderful, like a funeral home”…hmm?

A 1.7 oz. bottle retails for $80 at Pretty Woman.

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*Disclaimer- This product was provided by PR. I am  not financially compensated for this review or any others. My opinions are my own.

15 thoughts on “Barbara Orbison Pretty Woman Perfume Review

  1. Yes! I love cedar/amber/incense fragrances. I will have to ry this. they only thing is, i agree with yoru friend, lilies=funerals for me. But carnation is ok. The only carnation that I can recommend is parfums de nicolai maharanih. Thanks for the great review!
    kjanicki recently posted..Serge Lutens – Boxeuses

    1. I’ll put this on “the list”.
      I didn’t have the lily=funerals “stereotype”. Luckily, I haven’t been to many funerals. But, after mentioning lily fragrances to people they do describe them as “dark” or “morbid”.
      Carnation scents are difficult to come by! I like them because they are a “masculine” floral.

    1. Vanilla isn’t a listed note but I think it’s there. It does wear “creamy” but not gourmand. Sometimes my nose confuses vanilla and amber. Some ambers are so creamy and not powdery. (I think that makes sense).

      1. A little vanilla won’t kill me. It can provide that creaminess you mentioned, but sometimes it’s overkill and I turn into a cookie.

        Pretty Woman does sound beautiful, vanilla or no.

        Oh, I’m so fussy, always complaining about the vanilla!

        1. It’s not fussy. We all have notes we like or dislike. It seems that vanilla is one of those notes that people LOVE or HATE. I do see it as an overwhelming note and we all know there are some awful vanilla fragrances out there. It’s difficult to not think of those! I used to hate Guerlain L’Instant but now love it.
          Hmm, trying to think of a note that I don’t like. I think freesia or whatever “generic” floral note that is used in half of the Victoria’s Secret Secret Garden body sprays.

  2. This sounds like something I would like. I like fragrances like Prada because they are long wearing and stick to my skin.

    1. Prada is one of my favorite perfumes for the same reason! Barbara Orbison Pretty Woman has like 10xs the lasting power as Prada! It seriously will stay on as long as you want it to!

    1. You should sample this one. I can see how she could like it if she likes Prada. Pretty Woman is much more floral though, but still spicy.

    1. I do too. More people should be given the opportunity to try it. It’s a beautiful fragrance but I can see how some people may not like it. (It’s got sillage).

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