Archive for the ‘Reviews’ Category

Tom Ford Private Blend Noir de Noir

Tuesday, April 7th, 2009

Absolutely incredible fragrance. On the first spritz I get Montale’s sparkling Oud Damascus. This is interesting as many people have written that they can smell no Oud wood in this. However I certainly can, possibly because I’m familiar with some of Montales Ouds ! From there we move into a much darker (Black Rose) and earthy (Black Truffle) stage.

This is a true powerhouse of a perfume, and the only one that I have  so far that I would not consider suitable for daytime wear ! Unless you’re reallly out to stun the board of Directors !

The drydown of Noir de Noir reminds me of Lancome’s amazing, blue tinged Mille et ue Roses (2000 et une Rose), which is one of the hardest and most expensive perfumes to find . Although it is at all times darker and earthier by nature than the Lancome.

However, Noir de Noir  never becomes cloying and the Oud note comes back for me in the drydown

This one is the closest in ‘feel’ to his favoured original Black Orchid, but with Rose replacing the  Orchid.

I would wear this if  I really wanted to make an impression at a party or such. This one is definitely for ‘occasional’ use. However, it may smell completely different on you, this is the most interesting facet of the entire Private Blend line.

The darkes of all dark Roses.


Tom Ford Private Blend Moss Breches

Tuesday, April 7th, 2009

When I first sprayed this one, I was immediately reminded of YSL’s classic Opium in its’ original form. This top note stays around for abour 10mins or so and then fades into the most glorious ‘herby’ drydown.

This is my favourite in the line, possibly because it’s like no other fragrance I’ve ever smelt, but at the same time is ‘comfortable’ and intensely wearable. It feels very fresh almost like a very heavy cologne.

Sorry I can’t say more than that, I’m finding the Private Blend very hard to write about. Having read other blogs, it seems that just as usual, one’s body chemistry seems to be the most important  aspect, as to which notes you will or won’t pick up.

PL&P !

Tom Ford Private Blend TUSCAN LEATHER review

Sunday, February 1st, 2009

Well, I don’t like leather notes on the whole, but was seduced by this with the promise of ‘incense’ in the drydown. Let’s just say it was worth the 50min wait to get there ! Also I woke up this morning with just a hint of incense and raspberry on my wrist, despite the handcream I put on last night. What amazing staying power.

Now, raspberry* may seem like a strange combination with the blackest of black leather, but it works so beautifully. It’s slightly zingy for the first few seconds and then gently melts into the leather. And this leather  just reeks of quality and darkness, but at the same time seems warm and comforting. Just like your rebel boyfriend’s oldest leather jacket…………..For there is a slightly rebelious metalic note hidden in there somewhere; which gives it a hint of a jagged edge within the comfort.

So, this definitely has attractions for both M and F alike. Guys, if you were wearing this, I’d be back time after time for a good long sniff.  So it really does have a warm and powerful seductive quality, possibly dangerously so !   I have read somewhere that this is ‘boring’, however I certainly haven’t found it that way at all.

I may even wear this as I love the drydown, and remember I don’t like leather notes at all !

I have to say that I am very impressed with this and would give it 10/10…………surprising !

Ah yes, I also read that the Private Blend fragrances can be layered; I shall try a little Purple Patchouli with this tomorrow.

I suddenly realised that the *raspberry in this is reminiscent of Shiseido’s Rose Rouge, which I love.

Peace, Love & Perfume


Tom Ford White Patchouli review

Saturday, October 25th, 2008

Patchouli for the 21st Century

When I heard about the release of this fragrance I was intrigued and managed to capture a bottle early. I was very cautious at first as this has had many mixed review. 

On the first small spritz it was like the very best Champagne which exploded into a ‘fizzy’ white flower accord. I noticed straightaway that ‘creaosote’ note which always evades me, (in Kisu, Diorissimo and ADP’s Iris Nobile).  This settled down to a warm earthy patchouli which was very light and  eminently wearable for this Autum.

All in all, it wasn’t quite what I’d expected and had been hoping for more ………so, I went the whole hog – sprayed it on all over and have been totally in love ever since !

This is no hippy patchouli (L’Artisans Patchouli Patch), nor is it so creamy as Prada’s fabulous Eau de Parfum. Many blogs have mentioned a relationship between this and L’Artisans classic Voleur de Roses, a ‘wet’ floral patchouli.  However, it could be ‘Voleurs’ more summery sister…………………………….it sparkles and zings but keeps you well earthed with this fabulously updated Patchouli Fragrance.

This is very much a skin scent and will all depend , as ever on your chemistry. However it has good staying power and a noticeably pleasing sillage.

So, I know what I’m wearing for Autumn !

Well done Tom Ford 10/10 !

…………..and here’s the official line:  

 A scent that perfectly captures the myth of a generation, surrounded by sleek wood notes and white flowers, this clean, penetrating fragrance melds Bohemian influences with today’s structured sophistication.

 Opens energetically sparkling notes of bergamot blended with delicate white peony and spicy coriander accents make an instant play for attention.

The alluring and modern heart unfolds in sequence: rich rose absolute, carnal night blooming jasmine, and the stimulating ambrette seed.

Precious patchouli orpur infuses the finish with exotic depth. Its stimulating sensual pull is enriched by a medley of blonde woods and the soft eastern aroma of incense.

 I should  clarify here that  I used to smother myself liberally with Patchouly oil in the early 70’s. Since then I had changed my obsession to incense notes, mostly due to the overpowering nature of Patchouly !

I have an old boyfriend from my teens, (dead cool, long haired surfer dude !),who says that he can’t smell Patchouli without thinking of me – ah bless ! What a way to be remembered………….

Peace, Love and Perfume !

Jo Malone Sweet Lime & Cedar – First Impressions

Thursday, October 16th, 2008

My Sweet Lime & Cedar just arrived, I ripped open the package and had a quick spray.  Initially very citrusy with more than a hint of Wild Fig. Figgy notes usually make me heave ! However, here it smells clean and fresh. I also pick up a hint of coconut.

I have often wondered why Jo Malone choose ’summery’ colognes for an autumn release, and this one also has me puzzled. Although the Cedar adds depth; something that I find missing from most of her range. I love Vetyver, Blue Agava & Cacao & Verbenas de Provence.  Sadly I only have the BAC at the moment. I think that this would layer up very nicely with the three I’ve just mentioned and would also work beautifully with Wild Fig & Cassis.

I’ve been wearing this for 20 mins now and I find it to be vivacious, zesty with fab woody dry down. Altogether a very superior product.


PL&P !

Serge Noir/Kisu a comparative sniff w/ a side order of Avignon and a couple of others

Friday, September 5th, 2008

Well here I am with a cup of tea, Serge Noir on the L Hand and Tann Rokka’s Kisu on the R.

First application: the SN goes on easily and is both  smoky and zingy. In fact for a few moments it reminds me intensely of Goya’s Aqua Manda,  which has been discontinued since the 70’s and was my favourite childhood scent.  Kisu is light and airy. 10 mins in and on my L I have the  def smell of Porsche tyres !  See this excellent review for more details

On my R I smell the creosote type note that some say appears in SN. I haven’t picked that one up, and in a comparative sniffing I don’t get much Rousse-like Cinnamon either. This creosote note is definitely in SL’s  Sarrassins + Tubereuse Criminelle. Also in Acqua di Parma’s Iris Nobile and Dior’s classic, Diorissimo. (If anyone has any ideas about what it might be, then please put me out of my misery! ).

Just for a few seconds I get an instant hit from Kisu of the Lemon/Lavender note in Guerlain’s Jicky. A favourite of mine since I was a teenager ! Pretentious ? moi ?

OK 20 mins now SN is in its ‘Avignon’ stage and Kisu is just settling gently into a woody, powdery, calming and contemplative phase.

Just to digress for a rmoment. There are those who say that Matthew Williamson’s Incense is a far cry from the legendary one created by Lyn Harris. However, on me the new formulation smells almost exactly the same as CdG’s Avignon, but just a little warmer. Which for me is a good thing. Try it, you might be surprised, although as we well know, individual body chemistry is ALL in perfumery.

Well into the hour now and SN is still very smokey and incensey, but constantly shifting.  Kisu has also  turned into a woody, incensey, constantly shifting gentle kiss, which it was named for and is reminiscent for me of Shiseido’s original Zen.  Kisu is at all times warmer and more powdery than Serge Noir, which definitely does have a ‘dusty’/peppery/dry/hot element.

I’m pleased I got them both and will certainly be wearing them myself this Autumn, which has already started for us here in the UK after a mournful summer. And yes, there IS a slightly mournful feel to Serge Noir once it settles in.  So I get the Pheonix analogy in SL’s own write up of this new fragrance.

A phoenix, the mythical bird of legend burns at the height of its splendour before emerging triumphant, reborn from the ashes in a choreography of flame, conjuring the shapes of yesterday in a dance of ashes. The swirls of oriental grey enrich the twilight with depth and intensity while windswept memories hint at the beauty of transformation. An ode to everlasting beauty under cover of night’s rich plumage.”


This is his best one for for me since Chypre Rouge, which I adore in the Fall. In fact Chypre Rouge is THE SL for me, sadly Serge Noir has failed (so far) to eclipse it ! However, I’m now testing it on its own and am at least open to persuation.  I have to say that it is very definitely growing on me.

What more can I say, they’re are both gorgeous and multifaceted, but unless you try them yourself you will never know !

Happy sniffing