Tag Archives: Tauer

Tauer Cologne du Maghreb: I Want Every Room in My House to Smell Like This All Year Round

photo borrowed from ChemistInTheBottle.wordpress.com
photo borrowed from ChemistInTheBottle.wordpress.com

I am a big Tauer fan, as regular readers may have noticed.  There are very few gaps in my Tauer sample collection, and now, thanks to Andy, I have everything.

I was recently sent a sample of Cologne du Maghreb by Andy Tauer himself.  He knows, and I know that just because the sample is free doesn’t mean I have to like it. Thankfully, (and luckily, as I hate being rude) Cologne du Maghreb is wonderful.  In fact it’s about time there was a full time cologne on the Tauer books ( Maghreb made a temporary cameo in 2010) as there are florals, chypres, spices and well, let’s face it, he can do things with a Rose you never thought possible.

Firstly, it’s important to say that Maghreb is made of all natural materials.  Secondly, it’s cologne.  I’m saying this because it is not the same as other Tauer scents.  Longevity is not the same, and the refreshing opening tang is unapologetically botanical and zesty.  On his blog, Andy suggests a tip for longevity: spray chest liberally and add a cotton shirt or top.  The cotton will retain the scent all day as the skin heats up and burns off the scent, as hot skin does with colognes.

The balance of characteristic Tauer Bergamot and the seemingly freshly grated lemon zest is so exhilarating that I want every room in my house to smell like this all year round. It’s stunning.

jw054-350a-cocktai-gin-and-tonic_1920x1200_69161 Then it smells more grown up, as if you should wear it to an expensive gentleman’s club. There is something about it that suggests an Oriental, but the spice is so elusive, it’s almost like a fleeting clue.  Nevertheless, this hint of exotic heat helps to set this apart from your usual colognes.

After half an hour  it fades a little more, leaving traces of lemon zest and the kind of lavender you only get when you pick a bud and rub it together in your hand.  It’s that heady, almost vodka-like fresh lavender smell that would be in HD if you could see it on TV.

Add a bit of bitter into the mix: it’s clary sage- used (in my opinion) so disastrously in LUSH’s Gorilla perfume Euphoria that it almost put me off for life, but used with a light hand here. All this fades after it blooms, leaving a memory on skin after around say, two hours.

In fact an odd thing happened after that.  My skin smelled like my skin, but kind of stronger and sweeter, a bit like a sweet fern. I was sniffing for ages, wondering what it was until I realised the scent was only in the places where I had sprayed Cologne du Maghreb.  It was like overheated skin, a faint hint of herbs and a lick of honey, and then finally, it went away altogether.

Spray liberally and often and soak it up with clothing or a scarf. The bottle is different, the juice is pale green, and the experience is a tangent away from the usual fourteen hour longevity of a Tauer EDP.  As a cologne, it is in a different league from other colognes and I heartily recommend it.  As for male or female?  Pah!  Great on everyone.

There is an excellent review over on the lovely Lucas’s site ChemistInTheBottle  from  where I cheekily nicked the top photo.

Thanks Andy!
Thanks Andy!

IScentYouADay: The Journey Will Continue

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On January 2nd 2013 I decided to start a blog that reviewed a perfume a day for a year.  My dear friend LisaWordbird kindly brought me half a house full of samples and full bottles that made me faint with a thud.  Bringing me round with a whiff off Muscs Koublai Khan, she explained I could borrow and write about anything I needed. Without her, my blog would have been about ten times harder and I would not have been able to write about any of the amazing gems she has let me borrow.

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However, at the risk of sounding like I am explaining that the dog ate my homework, I must confess that I have not managed to write 365 reviews.  I did manage to post 310 blog posts however, so I hope you will forgive me.  I should point out at this point that the missing blogs would have occurred during 14 weeks of school holidays, two weeks away from my trusty  computer, two children’s ear infections and viruses, my own sinus infection which rendered my nose useless and  four nights when I had to hand sew a snowflake costume (the result was more Liberace than snowflake, but my son didn’t mind). Blogs would have been even fewer had the ever patient Mr IScent not been an IT professional who has fixed my glitches in exchange for kisses and hot food.

I have found that blogging about perfume not only gives me the headspace that I need when Imageraising a seven year old and a four year old, but it has taken me to another world where I have encountered many fascinating and kind people from around the globe. I cannot stop now.  It’s addictive.

However it was the rather marvellous Perfumed Dandy  who came up with the idea of writing about 1001 scents.  I am therefore adopting this wonderful idea which also, hopefully, gets me off the hook for not quite reaching my 365 in a year target.

So here you are: IScentYouADay: 1001 days of perfume.

Do you like it?

The Without Whom bit:

I could not have done this without the comments, encouragement and shared anecdotes from my followers on the blog, on Facebook and on Twitter.For everyone who stops by or has a quick read, you have my deep appreciation.

To LisaWordbird, the most selfless fellow fragrance freak I have ever ever met. Her generosity has no limits, and her knowledge has been invaluable. My eyes have been truly opened and my nose has been taken to places I could never have imagined. Thank you.

To the lovely companies who have been kind enough to supply me with samples: Miller Harris, Jo Loves, the Fragrance Shop, LUSH, Yves Rocher and dear, kind Andy Tauer.  None of them have paid me for my opnions, and I should imagine Lush wishes they had paid me to shut up at times. I thank them all.

And finally thank you to the Perfumed Dandy who helped me with the idea of how I could continue seamlessly. My warm thanks to you dear Dandy.

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Tauer No 9 Orange Star: An Orange Sun, an Amber Sunset.

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It always takes me a while to write a Tauer review because I like to do them justice. I like to get it right when I explain them (this feeling is not exclusive to Tauer scents, I hope  my descriptions are always frank and candid).

I can think of few people who are doing what Andy Tauer does. He creates the fragrances, fills the bottles, packs them, fills in the customs forms and updates the blog and the ImageFacebook page. No committees, no board rooms, no focus groups, no men in suits looking at trends and sales figures, just Andy being creative and hoping we like it too.

Orange Star is the 9th composition in the Tauer Classics Range and it appeals to me  as a fan of bitter orange in fragrance. It has some similarities to a scent I have here at home: Jesus Del Pozo Ambar, which is also a bitter Orange/Vanilla composition, but without the clarity of ingredients nor the originality of Orange Star (nor the  longevity, more of which anon).

 Orange Star’s gift is that it makes Orange into something unexpected.  Whereas a citrus is usually a citrus, sharp, bright and effervescent, in Orange Star, the orange becomes a glowing Amber background under which the Ambergris and Lemon Grass come out to play. It’s as if the Warm spicy orange is the sunset presiding over the other ingredients.

It seems appropriate that I am reviewing this today on the 1st of September as it is so autumnal with its warmth and heat, yet retains the Orange Blossom note like a memory of summer. Orange Star opens and ends with orange- a warm, enveloping orange, like a velvet backcloth: a refreshing change from cologne style sharpness. No less than fourteen hours later, the orange is still there, like a background curtain, letting the Ambergris and Vanilla have the stage, but never letting them forget who put them there.

A word about price.  Tauers don’t come cheap. One of my favourites, Carillon Pour Un Ange, is £99 a bottle. However, if like me, you have a wide selection of samples, decants and bottles, then a single bottle of perfume will last you a long time. Secondly, I can think of several High Street mainstream fragrances that need frequent topping up throughout the day and which only last a few hours.  Three single sprays of Orange Star in the morning keep me going for an impressive fourteen hours and blow me down if my pillow doesn’t smell nice the next day. You also have the added bonus of it being unlikely that the person next to you on the train will smell the same. How many times have I smelled Angel in the last week?

My little tin of Tauers comes everywhere with me, but I only pull them out of the bag when I need that boost.  I wear them when I want to feel Queenly.  I wear them when I have to do something I’ve been dreading (Legoland) and I wear them when I’m just sitting at home sniffing my arm and staring into space.

I would like to thank Andy Tauer for providing me with a selection of samples.  I am under no obligation at all to like them, and I would say so if I didn’t, but I do.  Gosh I really do.

Andy Tauer No 11: Carillon Pour Un Ange

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Created by Andy Tauer in homage to his favourite flower Lily of the Valley,  (allegedly one of the reasons why he became a perfumer), Carillon Pour Un Ange immediately took me back to my past.

I couldn’t figure it out, although as the day wore on, the penny dropped.  It never ceases to amaze me how perfume can take me back to a day or a moment in my past that I had thought I had forgotten. It’s like a time machine.

As I smelt the divine muguets in Carillon Pour Un Ange, I was taken back to a sunny day in my late grandmother’s garden. We were very close and I treasure every moment I had with her. Around the base of her rose garden was a carpet of Lily of The Valley. I asked her what it was and she told me, and invited me to pick some to smell. The result was heavenly and heady.  All the best smells can be found in nature and I had almost forgotten that warm day when we were just standing around in her garden on our own.

Cicley Mary Barker Flower Fairies
Cicley Mary Barker Flower Fairies

Lily of the Valley doesn’t just grow for anyone. It is said that it is either very hard to grow or very easy, if you have the magic touch. There is no middle ground. This pretty sprig of white buds against its green background always says Spring to me, and it never fails to stop me in my tracks. As Andy himself says of Carillon Pour Un Ange “it is a green choir of flowers”

The burst of flora in the initial notes is clean and pure and natural. It does not smell synthetic. The Lilacs come through too, and the overall impression is of a dewy moistness. This is almost thirst quenching. The Rose is present too, but does not dominate in the Turkish Delight sort of way that it so often does. This almost borderline spicy Lily of The Valley scent is addictive.

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But it doesn’t stop there. Just a moment ago I was looking around the room for a Vetiver or Oud type smell until I realised it was on my arm. And it was not Vetiver or Oud, but Ambergris and Wood.  The Lily of The valley is still there though, and despite the more masculine base notes, the scent retains it delicacy and fragility. I tell you, it’s seriously clever.

Although Tauer scents are regarded as niche, and thus price tags are not in the everyday category, I cannot help but think that  a Tauer is excellent value. Like the gorgeous L’Air Du Desert Marocain, lasting power is nearly twelve hours. A lot of far cheaper fragrances have nothing like this sort of longevity. He also sells sample sets, which are perfect if you cannot buy in person but don’t want to buy blind.

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Whilst I am a fierce advocate of not smashing your piggy bank to smell good, I would also say that if you were going to invest in a full bottle of anything, an Andy Tauer scent would outlast all contenders.

My grandmother has not been with us these last ten years, but  were she here today she would have adored this.  And I would have got it for her.

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