HEELEY Ophelia EDP Perfume Review

Heeley Ophelia

For some reason I’ve always had issues with beautiful perfumes. I’m drawn to perfumes with some ugliness to them – cumin, leather, filthy indoles. Over the past year, I’ve fully embraced beautiful perfumes – perfumes more beautiful than reality, perfumes that don’t seem to belong on earth. HEELEY Ophélia could be a perfume that fits into this category. Its fault is that it is so beautiful that it seems unworldly. It’s so perfect that it makes me nervous. ¹

Ophelia opens as a big, fresh floral. It’s a green floral that reminds me of lily of the valley with orange zest. Ophelia smells like spring. There’s a whisper of green lilac. With time I pick up on the jasmine. And more jasmine. Ophelia wears as a green jasmine on me for most the wear. The scent is fresh, slightly aquatic…it’s dewy but not “cool”. There’s a sweeter tuberose with coconut and a creamy ylang-ylang. The heart is a big white floral. The dry-down is a vanilla-lily with a sheer, delicate white musk.

Ophelia is a beautiful fragrance. However, it’s so beautiful that one could argue that it lacks any interest. It’s so perfect that I think people could accuse it of being dull! In fact, I’m on the fence about my feelings of Ophelia, but I’ve already admitted my difficult past with perfumes like this.

My biggest issue with Ophelia is that it reminds of the of those silly studies that are like “Scientists have determined the perfect female face” and it is some computer generated image of this face that is supposed to be so perfect but you look at it and you get the point that “ideally” it is supposed to be the most perfect face ever but all you see is a symmetrical computer generated face that sort of comes across as perfectly boring? HEELEY Ophelia is like that. It’s pretty and the fairest at the ball, but it lacks any obvious imperfections. And I realize that I like large noses and thick eyebrows; I get bored with sparkling clear eyes and cute cupid’s bows.

Carole Lombard

Notes listed include Italian orange, green flower stems, jasmine, ylang ylang, tuberose, moss, and white musk. Launch date 2009.

Try Ophelia if you like pretty white florals. Or if you like perfumes like Diptyque Olene, L’Artisan Parfumeur La Chasse aux Papillons, By Kilian Love & Tears, Donna Karan Gold, and/or Montale Jasmin Full. Ophelia is a very feminine fragrance. And as far as a white floral goes, Ophelia isn’t as cool and cruel. I think it’s easier to wear than Fracas or Malle Carnal Flower. 

Projection and longevity are above average. This wears much longer than the brand’s extraits!

The 3.4 oz EDP retails for $180 at MiN NY.Samples are also available for purchase.

Victoria’s Final EauPINIONA fresh, innocent, and “perfect” white floral (like Shakespeare’s Ophelia but without any of the tragedy). I appreciate it but my feelings are still mixed. It’s so “physically” beautiful and ideally perfect that it makes me nervous (and sometimes bored).

¹Uncanny Valley explains this phenomenon. Sometimes stuff is so perfect that my first instinct is to run. And I notice I get that with perfumes, perfumes like Ophelia.

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*Sample provided by MiN NY. Product pic from Barney’s. Carole Lombard from

10 thoughts on “HEELEY Ophelia EDP Perfume Review

  1. Hi there Victoria,
    Great review, as always. I love learning more about you and your world reality through your posts.
    Thanks too for the link love.
    Portia xx

  2. That’s how I feel about the Grossmith fragrances. I can’t love them fully because they feel Barbie perfect.

    1. Oh, same here. I tried to love those but they are so darn perfect and idealized that they make me a little nervous. Nice to know that I’m not the only one 🙂

  3. what’s life without a little wabi-sabi? thank for elightening us on “the uncanny valley”.. it’s fascinating!

    1. that’s sad. i get all edumacateded on the uncanny valley and then i can’t even spell “enlighten”.

      1. Ha! I’m a one woman show and you better believe I typo, misspell and straight up omit words. I’m not judging!

  4. I remember liking Ophelia when I tried it at Barneys but I never felt compelled to try it on skin. I don’t know why but it’s definitely not because I cannot take “beautiful” neat. Partially, I think, it’s a bottle size fault: almost anything bigger than 50 ml scares me away nowadays.

    1. I am at the stage of this perfume thing to now see “big bottle” and run too 😉

      Really the HEELEYs aren’t that expensive if I think of them as smaller bottles. But, they’re big and more than I want to pay (because I will probably never use a 100 ml of anything).

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