Thursday 28 May 2015


The chypre fragrance was to the seventies what the Floral Oriental would be to the eighties, and there were lots to choose from. With a complete contrast to the emerging "youth" scents, that were full of bouncy freshness, and even the gloriously "simple" Penhaligon's florals, which were actually far from simple, the chypre provided a scent full of maturity and elegance. The most famous chypre of the Seventies was surely Charlie by Revlon, although it was marketed as an Aldehydic Floral, but Yardley wanted a piece of the action. Their release was the powerful CHIQUE, and this oakmoss overdose is still in production.

Sunday 24 May 2015

I AM WOMAN ... Hear Me Purr

Fifteen years after the launch of her last perfume, Spectacular, Joan Collins returned to the stage with I AM WOMAN. The fragrance premiered on 28th February 2014, so a year on I think it's time to revisit and see whether the lady has aged gracefully. The perfume is part of a wider range called "Joan Collins Timeless Beauty", which also includes makeup and skincare, and was initially exclusively sold through QVC. Don't pull that face, QVC is now a major cosmetics outlet and companies ignore it at their peril; they can launch, maintain and promote any brand which takes their fancy.

Saturday 23 May 2015

SCOUNDREL - A Bumpy Ride

The 1980s were a difficult decade for Revlon, especially as they were approaching the ten year anniversary of Charlie with no new masterpiece in sight. Enter Scoundrel with the slogan "Seize the moment"Launched in 1980, the first three years of its life went largely unnoticed, but then the reigning "bitch" of prime time television swept in and changed its future forever, well at least until 1986.

Tuesday 19 May 2015

The SPECTACULAR Joan Collins

With Dynasty about to finish its nine series reign over prime-time television, Joan Collins decided the time was right to launch her first fragrance. No stranger to perfume promotion, Joan had been the face of Revlon's Scoundrel from 1983-1986, but this time she was very firmly in charge. Under the name of "The Design House of Joan Collins", but actually produced by Parlux Fragrances Ltd, the first perfume in a planned line was Spectacular. At the time of the launch Joan was very open about the fact that she wanted an independent income and, alongside other "Design House" ventures, Spectacular came with very high expectations.

Saturday 16 May 2015

NAPOLEON by Galimard

When Galimard were approached by "L’Association Action Nationale des élus pour la Route Napoléon" to create a perfume to celebrate the bicentenary of the passage of the Emperor from Golfe-Juan to Grenoble, Chantal Roux, Galimard’s co-owner, began by researching the man himself. Interestingly she found that Napoleon possessed an excellent sense of smell. He loved the scent of rose, orange water and violet, and as he was from Corsica had also grown up with the aroma of the scrubland. Any research on Napoleon will always reveal his love of the ladies, so Chantal thought it important to bring feminine notes into the fragrance in a way that meant it could be enjoyed by both men and women. On the 20th February 2015 Napoléon was launched at Galimard’s factory in Grasse.

So, a perfume inspired by a man who adored Eau de Colognes. Can it work?

Friday 15 May 2015

FOREVER KRYSTLE by Charles of the Ritz

The 1980s was the decade of shoulder pads and big hair, and it also gave rise to many perfumes that matched. Those ten years saw an incredible output of fragrances and it was impossible to keep up with each one. This meant that so many slipped under the radar. One that proved incredibly popular however was Forever Krystle from Charles of the Ritz. It was created to tap into the success that the television series Dynasty was enjoying at the time and the heroine, Krystle Carrington, was chosen to be the inspiration. Originally released in 1984, it’s time to see if the years have been kind.

Monday 11 May 2015

Armed and Dangerous

I'm sure that every reader has found themselves, at one time or another, dodging around the department store trying desperately to avoid getting "traffic stopped" by a consultant who is armed with the latest "O Dee Perfume".

Should we really be so scared about making eye contact with the "fragrance fighters"? Of course we shouldn't. Firstly, they are only doing their jobs and secondly, give them a chance and see if they really do know their juice. If you love your perfumes then why wouldn't you want a one to one introduction to a new fragrance?

Sunday 10 May 2015

An 80s Love Affair

I don't want it and I don't need it, but I MUST have it. That is the way my mind works when I see a discontinued perfume; the thrill of finding an old master, a classic, a rarity. However, if you tell me that the perfume is from the 1980s then it becomes a fight to the death. What is it about this decade that makes us lose all sense and spend a fortune bidding on a bottle of perfume that could end up smelling like gin?

Well, those ten years saw an incredible output of fragrances with what seemed liked a release nearly every week, so it was impossible to keep up with each one. So many slipped under the radar that a search on eBay turns up the most eclectic mix. Forget the big companies, forget even the infamous Giorgio of Beverley Hills, the eighties saw the birth of the celebrity fragrance.

Thursday 7 May 2015

Where ROADS lead

"An Irish perfumery which manufactures in the UK", it's not the usual start to a description about a fragrance brand, but keep reading and I guarantee you will be very surprised. Roads Fragrance, part of the Roads Luxury Group, is based in Dublin and run by its founder Danielle Ryan. Her concept is simple, "to create an artistic brand that would not be limited by its own definition and grow according to its customers' interests." So, will the company's output really be influenced by the sales results of its current ten perfumes? Very probably, but please don't ask me to number crunch this extraordinary collection.

Monday 4 May 2015

A New Start

So, it has taken me a while to enter the world of the "blogspace", but I'm finally here. Please forgive what is bound to be a slow start, as I wrestle with the demands of this new platform, but rest assured that full service will commence soon.