Holiday Schedule

If all goes well I plan to stay open and continue shipping right though December and into January, but I may take a week off from shipping orders in mid January for inventory and paperwork. Orders are still coming in and shipping out (those received yesterday should ship Monday). I’ll be in town and answering email as usual this week.

Tried Tom Ford Black Orchid — wow, that’s one strong scent! Too much for me even with just one squirt. I’d have to try a small dab from a vial rather than a squirt. The first hour was overbearing, but the earthy patchouli-rich drydown was interesting and had some yummy aspects, though a bit on the sweet side. I really like the earthy aspect of Black Orchid and like the floral accord, but I’d need to tone it down and edit out a few ingredients to make it a fit for me (I get some ozonic notes that I don’t care for because I’m sensitive to those). I still like his Japan Noir and Noir de Noir the best of the ones I’ve tried. His advertising turns me off, but it’s still interesting to try some of the scents, especially so I know what people are talking about when they tell me the scents they do and don’t like.

Black Orchid has some ingredients I don’t like to use in my scents that are common in department store scents for giving extra sillage and strength. I actually like the bold use of earthy notes in Black Orchid, but the touches of ozonic notes don’t work for me, though I realize they are there partly to counter sweetness. I think the ingredients that niche scents often leave out or use very sparingly are just as important in defining “niche” as the ingredients that are put in. People assume niche scents have more naturals and more expensive ingredients, and on the whole that is probably true, but they also tend to use less of some things that department store scents use in abundance. The term niche is being used less as so many new lines are launched, but that’s a whole other topic….

I need to wrap my presents for family members. Haven’t started that yet. Hope your last-minute shopping and holiday prep are going well!

About Laurie E

artisan perfumer and owner of Sonoma Scent Studio
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5 Responses to Holiday Schedule

  1. Amy H says:

    I have never sniffed Black Orchid myself, but now I want to to see if I pick up on the ingredients it has to increase sillage and strength (and longevity too?). That’s my main problem with most mass market fragrances — that they project so much, are often shrill, and last on my clothes until I wash them. I have the same problem with scented laundry detergent — those smells are so sticky you can’t get rid of them! That’s just not right. So I tend to stick to niche or naturals, to avoid whatever those ingredients I hate are.

  2. Gail S says:

    I’m with you on Black Orchid! That and Black Orchid Voile de Fleur are just way too much for me. There’s something in both of them that’s almost sick-making for me. I have no idea what it is unfortunately. Silly me bought a bottle of Voile de Fleur!!! Luckily I had opened it very carefully (including the cellophane) so I was able to seal it back up nicely and gave it to my sister who lives many hundreds of miles away 🙂 I have no idea how much she wears it, but it reminded me of Poison in terms of pungency and she was a big fan back in the day.

    Where I notice many mass-market fragrances smelling alike is in the drydown. Even if I like the top notes, that really ends up turning me off. I was wondering if it was the type of musks they use because I particularly notice it in Narciso Rodriguez, SJP Lovely and Armani Code. It’s almost bitter to my nose…

  3. Laurie says:

    Hi Amy! If you hate strong scents that last forever, don’t spray Black Orchid on your skin; try it on a paper strip. It lasted over a day on me despite scrubbing with rubbing alcohol after the first 10 hours (and several soap and water washes before the alcohol). I agree, naturals and many niche scents (though not all) do tend to stay closer to the skin and not persist for days. Seems like there’s a nice balance somewhere with a scent lasting long enough to make the price worthwhile but not lasting so long that you can’t get rid of it or being so strong that it projects beyond your personal zone.

    Hi Gail! Yes, you’re right on the drydown in mass market scents because they want to make them last forever so they use some of the same things in the base that eventually end up being all you smell as the top and heart wear off. I get helional in many department store drydowns, for example. It lasts forever on my skin and gets annoying after a while. It’s one of the less objectionable ozone notes to me, but it still gets tiresome. Calone and Scentenal are much harder for me to tolerate when they are prominent.

    I really appreciate fragrances that are designed to have a nice finish; so many start out great for a few hours and then after that they become boring or objectionable. It’s very tough to make something that’s great for the whole duration.

    For me most pure musk chems have nice drydowns, but it’s some of the other things that are blended with the musk chems that I don’t like. I’ve not tried Armani Code but have samples of Lovely and NR around here that I’ll sniff again sometime and see what pops out in the base on me after a few hours.

  4. Laurie says:

    Hi Laurie,
    That was a really interesting post. I agree with the Black Orchid being overwhelming. I never cared for it. Have you tried his lastest one White Patchouli? It’s interesting. On first try I didn’t care for it, but I tried it again and think I like it. When it drys down it really is nice. The ones of yours are still my favorite. I love wearing the Gardenia Musk. It smells so nice. Have a wonderful holiday!

    Beth

  5. Laurie says:

    Hi Beth! I’ve never tried White Patchouli but will have to sometime. I actually really like some of the notes in Black Orchid (I love earthy florals), but the scent as a whole doesn’t work for me. Glad you’re enjoying Gardenia Musk! White florals can be nice reminders of summer during the cold months. Happy holidays to you too!

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