In all honesty, I’ve felt a bit burnt out by perfume for the past couple of years. I mean, if this blog were a child, it’d be in 2nd grade. That’s a long time to talk about the same thing. I thought it may not even be “perfume” but life and personal obligations…stress. A lot has changed in my life during this time. We’ve moved across the country, we work different jobs and there’s all sorts of other things that have occurred that have me thinking about life differently. I actually thought my disinterest in perfume was perhaps something more clinical like depression. But, I realized it’s not me; it’s perfume. Despite all these life changes, I’m the most content I’ve been in ages. I have other hobbies that keep me engaged and that I enjoy. When I stepped back and observed my life, I’m like “Dude, you’re burnt out on perfume because perfume industry is crappier than ever”.
OK, I’m dramatic. But, really, I think the industry is more annoying than ever. Over the past few years, it seems like some really disinterested, borderline cynical “niche” brands have popped up overnight launching a collection of a dozen or more perfumes that are predictable. “Oh, we need a rose. Don’t forget the oud, that sells! We need a leather so people think we’re edgy. Oh, yeah, and a classic floral for those that don’t like to take chances. And don’t forget to slap a $375 price tag on it!“. There’s also the fact that niche is arguably no longer niche since brands have been bought up by large corporations like Estee Lauder and L’Oreal. Personally, I’ve noticed not much of a difference with the brands BUT I’ve felt this has encouraged some boring brands to launch in hopes they’ll sell their brand off for millions to one of these mega beauty corporations. Even the packaging of niche lines has become more homogeneous (think like Byredo-esque minimalist labels and bottles). The inspirations all feel the same. it’s so predictable and uninspired.
And don’t get me started on all the luxury designer labels coming out with exclusive, expensive collections that really offer nothing new to the perfume world. I mean, elitism, that already existed and I thought we were over that. Apparently not.
I’ve been a long supporter of indie perfumes on my blog, but I’ve noticed that has changed as well. There’s a lot more brands than there were 7-8 years ago. I get overwhelmed and don’t know where to start. I’ll try things and I don’t mean this to sound harsh, but I feel they may have rushed to market. On the flip, the indies that I’ve supported throughout the years like DSH and Providence Perfume Co. have only gotten better with time. These “tried and trued” brands have really been the only thing keeping me engaged during my “disinterested phase”.
Designer perfumes have been really boring but in all fairness, I haven’t tried to many over the past few years because they sounded so boring. There’s only so much pink pepper and ambroxan a person can stand in a lifetime. But, you guys, something has happened. I think designer perfume may have rekindled my perfume obsession. Can you believe that?
This past summer, designer perfumes have launched the sort of perfumes that I want to wear. These perfumes are pleasant but they’re also a lot more interesting than the Niche Nouveau that has been boring me to tears. They’re also more affordable which is so nice when everything seems to come with a $300+ price tag in Perfume World. It’s like niche became the new mainstream and now mainstream is starting to smell like it’s niche.
Currently, these are the perfumes that have me obsessed with perfume again. I want bottles of each of these.
Tom Ford Orchid Soleil – This is such a love it or hate it perfume. It’s loud. It has things that don’t sit well with folks like mentholated white florals and sweetness. But, it sits well with me. Plus, I love the bottle. I can’t wait to wear this weird, sweet floral under layers of bulky coats and scarfs.
Thierry Mugler Angel Muse – My expectations for this one were low because I’m bitter and old and don’t want anyone messing up Angel. I think I may actually like Angel Muse better than the original! It’s very similar but has a noticeable dacquoise accord. Instead of that dark, earthy patchouli of Angel, there’s a dark, earthy vetiver. Hazlenut and pavlova goodness. Need a huge bottle.
Elizabeth & James Nirvana Rose – Being that the other Elizabeth & James perfumes are good, I had high hopes for the new launches, Nirvana Rose and Nirvana Bourbon. They lived up to my expectations. Both are good but Nirvana Rose is much more of a Victoria perfume. It’s rose and blonde tobacco. I should get the big bottle because this is something I’m going to bathe in. Side note, Nirvana Bourbon is a great dry vanilla but I have that base already covered with fancy perfumes from Serge Lutens and Guerlain that I never wear. I’m not someone that really wears straight-up vanilla perfumes.
SJP Stash – I haven’t even tried this one yet but I know I want it. It sounds exactly like what Sarah Jessica Parker wanted Lovely to be. I love the idea of an affordable incense musk. I’m a sucker for the vintage-ish ad campaign and bottle too. I don’t like the name which makes me think of mustaches and/or smoking. The question now is do I get the EDP or try the perfume oil?
You can try to be a voice of reason and talk me out of buying these. In fact, my limited space will love you for that. But, I have to admit that infatuation feels good. I miss that fluttery fragrance feeling.
In the past three years, I’ve bought maybe 3 perfumes (excluding the ones for my Drugstore Divas series). The perfumes I bought weren’t new launches. They were older perfumes that have been on my list for ages (like Serge Lutens La Myrrhe). And then suddenly over a month in 2016, there’s 5 full-size bottles of perfumes that I want (the fifth being Jardins D’Écrivains George). And I have a feeling that Chanel No. 5 L’eau is going to be added to my wishlist.
What about you? What’s on your “To-Buy List”? Any new launches that you fancy?