Another week of Roses! Rose Cheapies – 2019
Winter has left me feeling exceptionally “blah” this year so I’m basically trying to do anything that I think will remind that my feelings and this cold season are temporary. As a distraction, I did something I tell all of ya’ll not to do. I blind-bought perfumes. But, let me explain! I bought rose-centric perfumes from a discount site, all of them selling for under $25. That seems like less of a gamble, right? This week I will see if the blind-sniffing odds were stacked against me or not…
Some would say that Perfumer’s Workshop Tea Rose is the reference rose soliflore and I wouldn’t argue with them. Tea Rose is rose. Now as you have heard me say every Rose Week, there is more than one way to interpret a rose in perfumery. But, Tea Rose is one of those that doesn’t want us to waste our time getting lost in translation. It’s just a big ‘ole rose.
Tea Rose smells like a florist’s fridge. When you first spray it, it’s like opening a refrigerator of red roses. It’s cool, red rose petals. There’s a hint of something like sliced apples and some lemon zest. As the perfume wears, the green-leaning rose goes into full bloom, exposing every little hidden crevice of its petals. However, there is more to Tea Rose than just rose. There’s a heady lily-of-the-valley sprouting up from clumps of melting winter ice. The heart is cool, green roses with heady, mentholated white florals. The rosewood is noticeable, which comes across as wood freshly polished with lemon-scented furniture polish. And this is what it dries down to – roses, rosewood and musk. It’s basically the same theme but it is less cool/green in the dry-down.
Is it a good thing that I don’t associate Tea Rose with anyone? When you have a perfume that has lasted this long (launched in the 70’s) and has been rather popular, there’s always a risk of it being defined by someone and not by the perfume. The only reason I bring this up is because I can’t talk about this perfume without someone sharing a memory of why they love/hate it. I have heard stories of oppressive Sunday school teachers, mean girls on the high school track team, loving matriarchs that I wish I had the opportunity to know, goth girls at NYC clubs that take the fetish night dress-code regulations very seriously, a babysitter that stole the family’s lawnmower…Tea Rose comes with stories! I encourage you, if you have one you’d like to share, please share your memories of Tea Rose because I love hearing about them. Sadly, I won’t have any to share.
Actually, I take that back. My only memory is that a wife of a very popular County music star of the 80’s/90’s wore it to dinner parties and all I remember from Tea Rose is what it tasted like. They both had huge hair so I just assumed that was what their lacquer-like, spray adhesive hairspray must have smelled like. I was much older than I would like to admit before I realized that hairspray does not smell like that…
Notes listed include bergamot, rose, lily, tuberose, sandalwood, amber, cedar and Brazilian rosewood. Launched in 1977.
Give Tea Rose a try if you love an “old-fashioned” rose. Or if you like perfumes like Jo Malone Red Roses, Oscar de la Renta Rose, Serge Lutens Sa Majeste la Rose, CREED Fleur de The Rose Bulgare and/or Penhaligon’s Elisabethan Rose.
Tea Rose’s strength (or it’s fault) is that projection and longevity are above average. It’s potent stuff. It calls itself an EDT! Anyway, this is one of the few perfumes that I wish came in a roller-ball applicator so it wouldn’t throw so much. Most of the time it’s “too much” for me.
Tea Rose can be found for a steal. The giant 4 oz bottle is on discount sites like Perfume.com for under $20.
Victoria’s Final EauPINION – Tea rose. Duh. I really like it because it’s a rose on ‘roids, but also it’s something I will have to be in the mood for because even if it is minimalist, it can come across as rather “busy”.
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*Product is being borrowed from a friend. Product pic from Amazon. Kristen McMenamy in Gentleman (one of my all time favorite editorials) by Arthur Elgort for Vogue Italia 1993. Post contains an affiliate link. Thanks!