Tag Archives: light refreshing perfumes

4711 Nouveau Cologne: Don’t Hold Back

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You know those days when it’s so muggy you want a shower every couple of hours? When skin feels sticky and hot? 4711 Nouveau Cologne is exactly what you need on such days.

You will probably be familiar with perennial classic 4711, which I love, but 4711 Nouveau Cologne is a modern take on that. It’s more of a “fraiche” version  and despite being a cologne, it was kind enough to hang around for a while: working its cooling, fresh magic on hot skin.

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This is no one-hit wonder: there are many fragrance notes involved in this perfect pick-me-up, making it both complex and universal ( and unisex).  I can’t think of anyone that this wouldn’t suit.  It opens with citrus, as a good cologne should, (yuzu from the grapefruit family), but you will also find light floral notes: namely peony and a hint of heliotrope and spicy geranium (mild spicy, like black pepper, not hot spicy like chili). There is a faint hint of white musk in the base, which to my nose, is pleasantly soapy and clean. 

I don’t expect longevity from colognes: they are designed as an instant refresher, but this one lasted an hour or two, making it ideal for your handbag and for that lunchtime lift.

The price is spot on: this is  a bargain. I found it on Escentual for just 11.00. My sample was from Cologne and Cotton. Although I can’t find 4711 Nouveau Cologne on their website today,  you can check out their fabulous range, which includes several from the mouthwatering Acqua Colonia range. Opinions are my own.

Stockists

You can buy 4711 Nouveau Cologne from Escentual, or Amazon UK.

L’Occitane Thé Vert & Bigarade

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This new collection from L’Occitane combines the scents of the French Riviera with the aromas of nature’s landscapes. L’Occitane Thé Vert & Bigarade is one of four scents in this small capsule collection.

As summer tentatively dips its toe in the water, it’s time to start exploring lighter scents. This one fits the bill perfectly. There are few notes that I can call more refreshing than Green Tea. You only have to look at the long term, unwavering success of the Elizabeth Arden Green Tea range to see this.

The way L’Occitane has done this is, as you would expect from this brand, impressive and innovative

The green tea comes through at first spray, but it is not alone. This a cologne style eau de toilette. Like all good colognes, there are citrus and herbs in there: notably bitter blood orange and aromatic thyme. The whole blends down into a faintly white musk, clean finish, but the lovely sharp opening settles into a light and refreshing base note that almost smells floral in its delicacy. I have a 7.5 ml Splash bottle, but it also comes in bottles ten times this size. Usually a light, citrus fragrance doesn’t last long, but this one does. I wore it for around four or five hours yesterday. It made me feel and smell like I had just stepped out of the cleanest most invigorating shower ever.

Stockists

I obtained my splash bottle from The Perfume Society Eaux La La Discovery Box. You can buy theses boxes from The Perfume Society website. Full bottles are available from John Lewis and Marks and Spencer.

The Best Grapefruit Scent I have ever smelled is Miller Harris Le Pamplemousse

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Creating a good grapefruit scent that doesn’t end up cardboard-y or smelling a bit sour is tough.  In my opinion, even Guerlain Aqua Allegoria Pamplelune  didn’t quite pull it off ( see my earlier review on this blog), and Guerlain only lets geniuses work on their stuff (genii?)

Miller Harris kindly sent me a sample of Le Pamplemousse to try, and as always when I am sent something free, it is on the understanding that I don’t have to either like it or fake delight.  Luckily, in this case, I am gushing like a girl with a crush.  Le Pamplemousse feels like a tall drink of water on a hot day.  It’s like a thirst quenching mirage in a desert.

pamplemousse with boxIt opens, naturally, with grapefruit, but the top notes are actually melon, rhubarb and grapefruit.  In case you’re worried this would smell like a fruit salad, don’t be.  It smells like the best shower you ever had in the poshest hotel you ever stayed in.  The melon simply isn’t there (phew!  I’m not a melon fan), and I’m not even sure the rhubarb is, although rhubarb can work in summery scents. It’s fresh and zingy and if Vitamin C had a smell it would be this.

pampleIn case I didn’t love it enough, there’s even a dab of my beloved oakmoss in it to keep me faithful for life. Where this outshines Guerlain Pamplelune though is that the basenote stays fresh and light and pretty and doesn’t end up smelling like dried up orange rind (Pamplelune is guilty of this although  it smelled very good the day I reviewed it.  It’s as if it knew it had an exam)

For a scent as hesperide-y as this one, lasting power is good at over five hours a spray.  Maybe it’s the clingy green oakmoss.  Maybe it’s the pretty Orangegrapefruit Blossom.  Maybe it’s the herbs, giving this a resonant botanical tang.

Whatever it is, this is the best grapefruit fragrance I have ever smelled, bar none.  In this weather, to which me and my freckles are not accustomed, we should get this on prescription.  Feel good factor- off the scale.

EDIT- Since this review, le Pamplelousse has sadly been discontinued. You can find it at TK Maxx and on eBay.  Shame!

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Biotherm Eau Vitaminee: Sparkling, Fizzy, Delightful

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 When I first tried Biotherm Eau Vitaminee I wrote it off as being a soliflore that smelled like Tropicana Orange Juice.  However, coming back to it today, I can see that I didn’t do it justice.  Eau Vitaminee is how I imagine I would smell if I was just leaving a very expensive spa (imagination will have to do for now!)

 I would bracket this with Askett and English Essential, Clarins Eau des Jardins and Jo Loves Green Orange and CorianderEau Vitaminee is a delightful blend of citrus: Oranges and Lemons make for an effervescent opening.  The notes smell fresh, crisp and authentic.  The middle note is Jasmine ( although I wouldn’t have said so) and the base notes are Freesia and Musk (which I would say is an accurate description).

This may have been better placed in Summer, but I think we need a spritz of something fresh in winter when central heating and rib sticking food can make us feel in need of something light, and a reminder of sunny days and sparkling, ice cold drinks is always welcome as the nights grow dark.

The price is nice at around £30 for 50ml, but even better on eBay.

Chanel Chance Eau Tendre: A Thousand Ballerinas

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I occasionally stop by the Chanel counter on my wanderings, although it’s usually to sniff Chanel No 19 and top up my Cristalle levels.  I am not enamoured of No 5, and usually ignore the others (I know! Shame on me).  However, I was sent a sample of Chanel Chance Eau Tendre by those nice people at The Fragrance Shop and I have to say that it is prettier than I imagined.

Opening with Grapefruit, Quince and Hyacinth, it’s pure and Spring like, almost ethereal.  The Quince is like the lightest of apple/pear scents, and the hyacinth, although noticeable, is done with a delicate hand without going all Zoflora on me.  Little Wonder when you find that the legendary Jacques Polge is responsible.

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photo wiki

There’s no heavy vanilla or red fruit or spice, or in fact anything heavy enough to pin it down.  It’s like a Will’O the Wisp in its delicacy.  It makes me think of ballerinas in white tulle and pink satin ballet shoes and tinkly melodies and everything that is lovely and nice and pretty and girly.

There are not many perfumes that I would regard as only for men or only for women, but Eau Tendre really does seem to be only for women.  Pale, pretty, dancing women that are elusive like nymphs. It’s so pure that it has a comforting feel to it, like freshly washed crisp cotton sheets, or a soft white blanket.

There is allegedly Amber and Cedar in the base, but all I get is a fluffy sort of Musk, light as clouds. This would be an ideal “first perfume” for a teenager.  It’s not remotely provocative. Longevity is in keeping with its floaty image.  Now you smell it, now you don’t.  Pouf! it’s gone.  Like Tinkerbell in a floaty nightie.