[my favorite mini- a pygmy marmoset, just a few inches high]
Guerlain Shalimar Parfum Initial
I'm a little late with this one, considering I've already used up 1/3 of my bottle and have since relegated it to the warm weather fragrance area, but better late than never. This flanker to Shalimar is quite good, it sparkles, it's a true gourmand Oriental in Thierry Wasser style. It's an energizing scent for me as opposed to the usual slightly narcotic effect an Oriental has on me, and while I admit that I've never been a fan of Shalimar (despite my mother's early proclivities toward it), I think Parfum Initial is a wonderful fragrance for warm weather. Lemon tart, vanilla, patchouli... a strange masculine edge that is not particularly easy to reconcile with the over-the-top doughy sweetness, but somehow, it works. By the power of Wasser, it works.
Molinard Vanille EDT
This is one of the best straight-up, cheap and cheerful vanilla scents for layering, and you can get it for a song on discount sites, too. One of my all-time favorite combinations is Le Labo Oud 27 with Molinard Vanille-- it lends a pure, cozy and warm edge to Oud 27's cold, woody, bewitching weirdness. The effect is much like M. Micallef's Aoud Gourmet, which is wonderful but expensive. This was one of my earliest scent layering experiments that turned out beautifully, and I wore it a ton last fall and winter.
Comme des Garcons Series 6 Synthetic: Tar
Sadly discontinued with arguably some of the worst packaging ever, I still love Tar. It's similar to Bulgari Black, except not as sweet, complex, or annoying. Instead, Tar gives me everything I love about avant-garde synthetic fragrances: an impression in broad strokes of newly laid black top in a school yard. While not being classically pretty in any way, shape or form, it should appeal to those who tend to be attracted to the scent of skunk and gasoline. If you happen to find a bottle somewhere in the open market, beware of the packaging, which resembles a black condom inside a clear plastic bottle. Sometimes it leaks and forms condensation inside, and whispers nasty things into your ear in the middle of the night. But, if you can find it, grab it anyway. Victoria from EauMG and I were lucky enough to pick up the last two bottles from The Perfume House in Portland thanks to a hot tip and quick thinking by Dee from Beauty on the Outside. We both still wonder if there are any more bottles out there in the world, but rather doubt it because of the high chance of evaporation due to the packaging.
[all perfumes purchased by me for my personal collection]