Perfume swap

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A perfume swap at mine the other night shows how every woman differs from every other.

Thought I would take a brief opportunity to blog, while I have internet (it’s been down because of the snow).

I organised a perfume swap evening last Friday for the girls. Not all went according to plan, I must say, as many people were ill, and then the weather got very icy, so in fact I cancelled it. But luckily, some of the girls didn’t get the email, so all of a sudden, five people turned up looking forward to an evening of swapping, spraying and nattering.

I turned it, instead, into a masterclass of sorts, not that I know all that much about perfume. But I took them through the differences between a chypre and a fougere, a fruity floral and a woody oriental. And what struck me most was the difference between the six of us.

M, in her early 70s, loved white florals – Eau Serge Lutens, Cristina Bertrand #3, Yardley’s White Satin.

J, in (I’m guessing) her early 50s, loved loud florals: Amarige, Arpege, Poeme and Beautiful.

E, in her 40s, was on the hunt for the perfect rose perfume. Yves St Laurent’s Paris wasn’t quite her cup of tea, and she rejected Parisienne as too sweet. But J had brought with her Dolce & Gabbana’s Rose The One, and this very much met with E’s approval, so I decanted a 1ml sample for her.

K, in her mid-50s, is not a perfume wearer and had brought with her, her only bottle – DNKY Be Delicious. Unsurprisingly, she proved to be a fan of fruity florals, but rejected the idea of taking a decant, as she doesn’t even wear the one perfume she’s got.

A, around 50, liked citrus perfumes, but she reserved her real love for Serge Lutens’ Ambre Sultan and was gutted to find that I had only 2.5ml and couldn’t decant any for her. In general, she preferred the woody perfumes and orientals – Opium, Eau Dynamisante, Jeux de Peau.

And myself? Well, I’m a white floral, loud floral, woody orientals kind of gal. I loathe fruity florals, aquatics and soliflores, and I love perfumes that some might think smell a bit more like room sprays: Tea for Two, Serge Noire, Comme des Garcons Incense Avignon, Fille en Aiguilles.

It was a fun evening and I hope people went home with a better idea of what they liked and why, and what other perfumes they might profitably try in the future. Perfume is a luxury item and it’s tough when you make a mistake. 

Right, I will post this before I lose internet again… batten down the hatches.  

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