Articles by Author Elena Vosnaki

Elena Vosnaki
Writer
Elena Vosnaki is an historian and perfume writer from Greece and a Writer for Fragrantica. She is the founder and editor of Perfume Shrine, one of the most respected independent online publications on perfume, containing fragrance reviews, industry interviews, essays on raw materials and perfume history, a winner and a finalist in numerous blog awards contests. Her writing was recognized at the Fifi Awards for Editorial Excellence in 2009 and she contributes to publications around the world.
[email protected]

Rahele by Neela Vermeire CreationsRahele by Neela Vermeire Creations

Fragrance Reviews 03/21/17 08:57 (2 comments)

  Anthony Bourdain once said that "the journey is part of the experience - an expression of the seriousness of one's intent; one doesn't take a train to Mecca." Fragrance as a means to journey into different places and various time periods is a well-favored technique for obvious reasons. It does not mean we lack seriousness in our intent! The fragrances that capture the hearts of time travelers are therefore many and well varied and some are more we... (more)

The newest creation by Bertrand Duchaufour for Neela Vermeire Creations breaks the mold of the previous scents. We review it here.

Patricia de Nicolai Opens a New BoutiquePatricia de Nicolai Opens a New Boutique

Shopping 03/20/17 09:25 (One comment)

  One of the oldest and most revered niche perfume brands is nicely expanding its circuit of retail. Twenty eight years after the opening of its first boutique at 69 avenue Raymond Poincaré in the 16th arrondissement of Paris, the perfume brand NICOLAÏ : Parfumeur-Créateur opens its eighth point of sale. Located at 31 rue de Chartres in Neuilly-sur-Seine, this boutique marks a new era. The move is co-ordinated with the renewed energy that ... (more)

The 8th point of sale of the niche brand is now official.

Best in Show: Welcome Spring! (2017)Best in Show: Welcome Spring! (2017)

Best in Show 03/19/17 18:51 (33 comments)

Fragrantica is so pleased to celebrate the first anniversary of its popular Best in Show column by returning to the inaugural topic in the series. As the vernal equinox marks a shift in temperatures around the globe, so too does it mark a shift in many of our fragrance habits. Out go the winter favorites and in come the scents we've been waiting to wear with the change in weather. Last year's (2016) choices included En Passant Frederic Malle , Borsari Violetta d... (more)

Our international staff celebrate the arrival of spring with some of their favorite aromas. What scent spells spring for you?

Theo Parfums: Interview & Fragrance GiveawayTheo Parfums: Interview & Fragrance Giveaway

Interviews 03/17/17 05:33 (254 comments)

The Greek brand  THÉO PARFUMS is the brain child of entrepreneur and creative director Theodoros Kalotinis, a young (quite young!) perfumer who launched the first exclusive perfume brand in Greece, based on Crete, the picturesque island that accounts for so many of the precious and aromatic flora of the country. The reception of his perfumes in Greece has been quite impressive and the consumers' comments surrounding the natural feel of the products, as well as the excellent ... (more)

News of the brand & the impending launch outside of Greece plus a giveaway of 3 perfumes! Comment under the article to enter the draw.

Best in Show: Sandalwood (2017)Best in Show: Sandalwood (2017)

Best in Show 03/12/17 06:57 (42 comments)

Sandalwood has a rich, balsamic, sweet fragrance with delicate wood notes. The oil has a woody, exotic smell, subtle and lingering and the color is pale yellow to pale gold. Sandalwood is a small evergreen tree growing to 18 m in height and 2.4 m in girth, with slender drooping branches. The tree reaches its full maturity in 60 to 80 years, which is when the center of the slender trunk (the heartwood) has achieved its greatest oil content. This classic oriental woody note offers milky... (more)

The documented use of sandalwood goes back 4000 years to India, Egypt, Greece and Rome. Our writers discuss their favorite sandalwood aromas; which are yours?

Best in Show: The Body Shop (2017)Best in Show: The Body Shop (2017)

Best in Show 03/05/17 08:39 (49 comments)

The Body Shop has been making the world a better place AND a better-smelling place since 1976. Its founder, the late Dame Anita Roddick, was a force of nature, shaking up the cosmetics industry with her commitments to fair trade, sustainable sourcing, truth in advertising and opposition to animal testing—long before the terms "green beauty" and "cruelty-free beauty" were coined and predating the ethical consumerism trend by more than a decade. By ... (more)

With 108 fragrances listed here on Fragrantica, The Body Shop has given us some great-smelling products over the years. What's your favorite?

Perfume Book Review: Le Roman Des Guerlain by Elisa de Feydeau (2017)Perfume Book Review: Le Roman Des Guerlain by Elisa de Feydeau (2017)

Art Books Events 02/28/17 09:23 (3 comments)

The motto of the Guerlain family, "Glory is ephemeral, only renown lasts", could be the very reason why Guerlain fragrances have established themselves as the sine qua non of getting to know fine fragrance itself. The notion of scent in general you see, differs, not quite so subtly either, from the intricate technicalities as well as the aesthetic principles that rule fine fragrance, i.e. fragrance to be worn on one's own self. Like for many perfume lovers, sampli... (more)

The motto of the Guerlain family of perfumers survives in the heritage of the venerable house, as recounted in a new book by historian Elisa de Feydeau, who narrates the family story in gorgeous de...

Best in Show: Jo Malone (2017)Best in Show: Jo Malone (2017)

Best in Show 02/26/17 09:45 (25 comments)

Like the story of Anita Roddick and the very-British The Body Shop, the Jo Malone brand started thanks to the vision and resourcefulness of a single English lady. A florist by day and a beautician by night, Jo was inspired by her dual-natured job, dabbling in beautiful things, to incorporate the lovely scents of her flower business into beauty products that women could savour for longer than a couple of days. Perfume, that most ephemeral pleasure, yet the one prolonging the tempo... (more)

"Customers have embraced the Jo Malone London brand for adherence to refined style and subtlety, the dignified concepts, and the encouragement to layer the colognes"

The Scented Ages of Man: Part 1, Eau Baby!The Scented Ages of Man: Part 1, Eau Baby!

Columns 02/20/17 12:21 (13 comments)

Men on a fragrant mission should start early, in our informed opinion. The earlier the better, in order to train their noses and be able to appreciate the many nuances of the world on offer around them. There are of course some cultural differences surrounding fragrance use on younger folks. Whereas some North Americans might view perfume use as sexualizing the infant (and furthermore which scent is more delicious than the one infants naturally own?) giving them a role beyond their ye... (more)

Two international perspectives from a man and woman about fragrances for men across their lifetimes. In Part 1 we examine fragrances for the baby boy.

Best in Show: Dame Perfumery (2017)Best in Show: Dame Perfumery (2017)

Best in Show 02/19/17 09:18 (22 comments)

Three generations: Grandfather (L), Father and Son (R) Those who have been active in global perfumery throughout the last 30 years surely have become acquainted with the singular force of visionary creativity in the perfume world known as Jeffrey Dame. Whether it is his work in fragrance - such as his assistance in scents such as Bill Blass Amazing or the development of the Long Lost Perfumes brand - or his creation of the Perfume of Life discussion boards, Jeffrey Dame h... (more)

From photorealistic soliflores to exceptional musks and gourmands, this week we examine Dame Perfumery. Comment and share your favorites!

A Fragrant Love Story: Help Us Write the ConclusionA Fragrant Love Story: Help Us Write the Conclusion

Fragrantica 02/13/17 11:36 (3 comments)

This Valentine's Day, Fragrantica writers enjoyed the creativity of composing a fragrant love story. One by one we took turns telling the story of Miss Dior and her mysterious suitor, incorporating numerous fragrances into the story. Now, we invite you to join in the fun and write a conclusion. Just leave a reply in our General Perfume Talk Forum HERE and be as creative or as silly as you wish. Incorporate scents into the story by using the insert perfume function under the reply are... (more)

Fragrantica staff members composed a group story incorporating numerous scents. We invite you to write the ending for your chance to win a very special Valentine gift from Roses for Autism!

Best in Show: Chocolate & Roses (2017)Best in Show: Chocolate & Roses (2017)

Best in Show 02/12/17 10:04 (31 comments)

What says Valentine's Day more than roses and chocolates? Charles II of Sweden is widely considered to have introduced the idea of flowers as symbols for emotions in the 18th century, with the red rose as a symbol for love. And  back in 1861, England's Cadbury was the first chocolate company to package chocolates in a heart-shaped box; the confection had long been considered an aphrodisiac. Luckily, perfume fans worldwide now can enjoy the combination of both of thes... (more)

Fragrantica editors choose an array of memorable floral gourmands highlighting rose and chocolate. Leave a comment and tell us your favorites!

Fragrant First Impressions: New Courreges, Rare Picasso, Classic Miller Harris and more!Fragrant First Impressions: New Courreges, Rare Picasso, Classic Miller Harris and more!

Fragrance Reviews 02/11/17 11:32 (6 comments)

Welcome to Fragrant First Impressions, our way of sharing our initial encounters with a wide array of fragrances. We may not have significant experience with any of these aromas just yet, but we're excited to present our thoughts to you!   Miller Harris L`Air de Rien Stefanie: I've recently developed an interest in the "not so clean" scents and L'Air de Rien is basically this: Not so clean. Someone spent the day in bed... (more)

Staff reviews of L'Air de Rien, Agua Brava, Tonkaccino, Le Chapeau Bleu, Eau de Rhubarbe Écarlate, Red Musk, The Dark Heart of Old Havana and Hyperbole

Best in Show: The Perfumes of Jacques Cavallier (2017)Best in Show: The Perfumes of Jacques Cavallier (2017)

Best in Show 02/05/17 07:37 (32 comments)

Renowned perfumers often leave their mark with a single famous creation that changes the industry, but few do so with not one but many different perfumes. Perfumer Jacques Cavallier is just such a figure, having changed our scented world with such industry changers as  Christian Dior’s Midnight Poison , or Issey Miyake’s L’eau d’Issey . He has produced perfumes for houses as famous as Givenchy and Lancôme , designers like Stella McCartney , and niche... (more)

Jacques Cavallier, Creator of Acqua di Gio and L'eau d'Issey gets the Best in Show treatment here at Fragrantica

Best in Show: Solid Fragrances (2017)Best in Show: Solid Fragrances (2017)

Best in Show 01/29/17 06:35 (19 comments)

Solid perfume is one of the ways to cut down on liquids when traveling by plane, sheer practicality conforming to airport regulations, but its merits (and history) go beyond just the nifty. The formula of most solid perfumes is sensuously waxy, offering a feeling of pampering and sensuality that is lacking from sprayers but is not as oily or staining as a regular oil. The packaging - from the decadently shiny black zamac cases of Diptyque, to the metal retro lockets by Aftelier and th... (more)

Our staff review Diptyque, Le Labo, Aftelier and some truly surprising bargain finds (hint: who loves amber?)

Tonic or Poison? The History of Eau de Melissa and Carmelite WaterTonic or Poison? The History of Eau de Melissa and Carmelite Water

1001 Past Tales 01/28/17 06:54 (5 comments)

Imagine for a moment how different the well-known story recounted by Dumas in The Three Musketeers would be if the (fictionally evil) Cardinal Richelieu had been poisoned by his beloved Eau de Melissa, which factual history assures us he carried everywhere to partake of to aid his heart and chase away migraines instilled by the worries of running the most powerful state of his times. One day in 1635, Armand Jean du Plessis de Richelieu, commonly referred to as Le Cardinal Riche... (more)

Would the Cardinal Richelieu have been better off without his beloved Carmelite Water? The popular formula for this prized tonic is at the center of a fascinating story.

A Scented Palace: The Secret History of Marie Antoinette's Perfumer (Book Review)A Scented Palace: The Secret History of Marie Antoinette's Perfumer (Book Review)

Art Books Events 01/25/17 18:21 (11 comments)

Despite Marie Antoinette, she of the fabled "let them eat cake" reputation, being known even among those not keen on history as a key player in the pre-Revolutionary times of the French royal court, her perfumer, Jean Louis Fargeon, is not. Elisabeth de Feydau set out to correct this omission in A Scented Palace: The Secret History of Marie Antoinette's Perfumer which reads as a new point of view of the times of Marie Antoinette, an era of most brutal and ... (more)

When a perfumer has a pivotal part in the court of the most infamous queen of France (and in the French Revolution that cost her her head as well) you know his story is an unmissable tale.

Best in Show: The Fragrances of Christine Nagel (2017)Best in Show: The Fragrances of Christine Nagel (2017)

Best in Show 01/22/17 11:35 (24 comments)

A student of organic chemistry, Geneva-born Christine Nagel joined Firmenich early in her career and it was there she learned to analyze and synthesize fragrant raw materials. Her bio in Wikipedia suggests that it was a meeting with the talented nose Alberto Morillas (see our Best in Show: The Fragrances of Alberto Morillas ) that encouraged her to become a perfumer. After Firmenich, she next worked at Aromatic Creations (now Symrise) as director of chromatography. While... (more)

From Dior to Hermes, Nagel has created some of our most memorable modern fragrances. Which are your favorites?

Iris Hand Cream: An Indulgent New Ritual from Frederic Malle and Olivia GiacobettiIris Hand Cream: An Indulgent New Ritual from Frederic Malle and Olivia Giacobetti

Bath & Body 01/18/17 08:52 (13 comments)

  The Medici family used to perfume their gloves with iris concrete.   Editions de Parfums Frédéric Malle  honors their history with a new hand cream featuring orris butter, from the dried rhizome of the iris plant, composed by revered perfumer Olivia Giacobetti.  The use of scented oils and pomades to scent leather gloves ripened in Italy and Florence in particular, where the Medici family flourished and patronized the arts. Originally, ... (more)

When the material that has been used to scent gloves since Renaissance is highlighted in a special hand cream, we know F. Malle is onto something.

Best in Show: Tuberose (2017)Best in Show: Tuberose (2017)

Best in Show 01/15/17 11:30 (66 comments)

No note in perfumery is more surprisingly carnal, creamier or contradicting than that of tuberose. The multi-petalled flower is a mix of flower shop freshness and velvety opulence. Which is why it is the perennial polarizing flower note having as many ardent fans as passionate detractors. The Victorians must have been among the latter: they forbade young girls of inhaling the scent of tuberose in the fear they might have a spontaneous orgasm! Roja Dove is right when he says that tuberose is ... (more)

Tuberose as featured in niche, luxe and men's perfumery.

Escentric 04: The Upcoming Player in the Escentric Molecules GameEscentric 04: The Upcoming Player in the Escentric Molecules Game

Niche Perfumery 01/09/17 08:49 (2 comments)

  The Escentric Molecules brand stands as the perfect example of what I call "the sliced bread concept": a simple pioneering idea that sounds like anyone could devise while walking the dog or something, but only one actually did. That one, in the case of purist ingredients sliced out of the lab for the public's awareness, has been none other than German-born perfumer Geza Schoen . The premise is a purist one. The motto of the brand runs thus: "... (more)

When renegade perfumer Geza Schoen ups the ante with a new addition in his Molecules line, there will be a quizzical waiting list to be sure!

Best in Show: Oriflame (2017)Best in Show: Oriflame (2017)

Best in Show 01/08/17 09:41 (26 comments)

Oriflame is one of the world's best-selling beauty brands. Founded in Sweden in 1967 and originally distributed exclusively by direct sales consultants, not unlike the American brand Avon, Oriflame successfuly marketed its innovative Swedish beauty style across Europe, into Asia, down to Africa and across the pond to Latin America. Today, Oriflame offers its products through consultants and via the web in more than 60 countries around the world. Despite its 50 years in busi... (more)

Affordable favorites from the Swedish brand, chosen by Fragrantica editors around the world!

Best in Show: Chanel (2017)Best in Show: Chanel (2017)

Best in Show 01/01/17 11:55 (67 comments)

Chanel. For almost 100 years, these two syllables have conjured sophistication, glamour and simplicity...and perfume. Whether choosing an iconic early aroma of the brand such as Cuir de Russie, a 70s classic like Cristalle, an 80s powerhouse oriental such as Coco, or a new Les Exclusifs such as Jersey, it is easy for everyone to find a Chanel of their own. And many famous names have helped to keep Chanel iconic: Marilyn and her N° 5; Warhol and his pai... (more)

Fragrantica editors celebrate their favorite Chanel fragrances. Leave a comment with your own picks!

My Favorite Perfumes from M.Micallef: 20 Years of Excellence in Fine PerfumeMy Favorite Perfumes from M.Micallef: 20 Years of Excellence in Fine Perfume

Niche Perfumery 12/27/16 10:28 (11 comments)

The world of niche perfumery sometimes resembles a borderless city to me, spreading around in ever expanding homocentric circles, intricate and labyrinthine in themselves, yet penetrable by a disciplined mind. I doubt mine is as disciplined as required, but pinpointing some of the worthier brands is still within my capacities. M.Micallef parfums celebrates 20 years of niche perfumery excellence and counts itself among those brands.    I occasionally hav... (more)

A very personal selection of some of the highlights by M.Micallef. The brand celebrates their 20 year anniversary this year.

A Fragrance for SantaA Fragrance for Santa

Columns 12/25/16 03:01 (34 comments)

Would Santa wear scent? What would it smell like? And if he did, would anybody smell it as he rode through the upper atmosphere? Well, every substance in gas form has a little gravity between molecules, so these molecules will distribute and fill all the space available. This probably means that in a vacuum or in outer space the diffusion of perfume will be much higher. Sadly, no one could notice it because it's actually not possible to inhale or breathe in space. ... (more)

Fragrantica editors choose scents they would gift to Santa. What would your choices be?

Editor's Choice Awards: Thanks from Writer and Editor, Elena VosnakiEditor's Choice Awards: Thanks from Writer and Editor, Elena Vosnaki

Fragrantica 12/19/16 09:24 (13 comments)

  A major part of the Fragrantica experience is coming on-board to see thousands of people, of different cultures and different backgrounds, writing about their experiences with fragrance. It must be worthwhile for the consumer no doubt, the way Trip Advisor reviews are, acting as a stirring guide into new purchases or even just sampling. But as a day-job-writer I can tell you that nothing beats savouring the richness of the text itself. From elaborate to lac... (more)

Congratulations to Le Coeur Gothique, Alex1984 and Perfumeaddict777! Enjoy your gifts!

Best in Show: Seasonal Spices - Cinnamon (2016)Best in Show: Seasonal Spices - Cinnamon (2016)

Best in Show 12/18/16 10:13 (46 comments)

In our first two articles celebrating spices in perfumes this holiday season, we explored nutmeg and cloves . In the third and last installment of this series, we set sail again to far off shores to investigate that nearly universal spice cinnamon .   Cinnamon is native to Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Burma, and the Malabar Coast of Southern India, where it is found as the inner bark of the Cinnamon tree, or  Cinnamomum verum . A similar plant, Cassia, is often u... (more)

In our third and final exploration of spice-based perfumes, we smell those amazing scents infused with cinnamon.

Best in Show: Fragrance for a Holiday Event (2016)Best in Show: Fragrance for a Holiday Event (2016)

Best in Show 12/11/16 10:04 (29 comments)

December - a time for parties, get-togethers, worship, vacations, family reunions, and even pensive nights in front of a colorfully lit tree. In this week's Best in Show,  our writers consider what they might wear for specific holiday-related occasions. Please join in the discussion and share with us some of your own choices for various December festivities! We look forward to your comments below. L`Erbolario Dolcelisir By:  Marlen Elliot Harriso... (more)

Please join in the discussion and share some of your own choices for various December festivities!

Best in Show: The Fragrances of Michel Almairac (2016)Best in Show: The Fragrances of Michel Almairac (2016)

Best in Show 12/04/16 11:35 (32 comments)

Born in 1953 in Grasse, France, Michel Almairac has become one of the most prolific modern perfumers, developing fragrances for many major brands including Gucci, Chloe, Le Labo, Burberry, Escada, Chopard and Givenchy, to name just a few. Almairac began his training in 1972 at Roure Betrand Dupont (now part of Givaudan) and continued his career working at such famous companies as Creations Aromatiques, Drom, and Takasago. He currently works at Robertet.&... (more)

Fragrantica's editors celebrate Michel Almairac by discussing what they consider to be some of his most important compositions. Which are your favorites?

Christmas Editions by Patricia de Nicolai: Or,  Myrrhe,  Encens Christmas Editions by Patricia de Nicolai: Or, Myrrhe, Encens

Home Scents 12/01/16 08:11 (One comment)

Nicolai Parfumeur Createur is launching a new triad of home scents inspired by the legendary gifts of the Wise Men to Jesus for Christmas: Or (Gold), Myrrhe (Myrrh) and Encens (Incense). These are the perfect scents to accompany lazy afternoons by the fire or to offer as Christmas gifts to your host.   The scents replicate familiar and beloved Christmas-y and winter-y smells.   Or (Gold) : Like oranges studded with cloves decorating Christmas trees, O... (more)

The gifts of the Three Wise Men are translated into scent products with the usual mastery of Patricia de Nicolai.

Fit for an Ageless Renaissance Queen: Eau de La Reine de HongrieFit for an Ageless Renaissance Queen: Eau de La Reine de Hongrie

1001 Past Tales 11/29/16 09:40 (7 comments)

"She had no sooner taken the spindle, which was very sharp, that she became a little dizzy, and, moreover, as the fairy order had ordered it thus, she pierced her hand and fell fainting. The good old woman, very embarrassed, shouted for help: help comes from all sides, one throws water into the princess's face, one loosens her clothes, one strikes her in the hands, one rubs her temples with Water Of the Queen of Hungary; But nothing made her come round."  ... (more)

Can an Eau de Toilette retain youth and beauty enough to make men hanker after you well into your 70s? The Queen of Hungary possessed one such secret recipe, the tale of which we explore in this es...

Best in Show: Caramel Fragrances (2016)Best in Show: Caramel Fragrances (2016)

Best in Show 11/27/16 09:56 (65 comments)

Ah, autumn and winter in the Northern Hemisphere, a time when gourmand scents seem absolutely perfect; the air is cooling, festive parties are being thrown and many of us turn to our fragrance wardrobes for something perhaps a bit sweeter, warmer and richer. Enter caramel, a confection traditionally made from heating sugar; sometimes butter and cream are also added. This gooey, golden syrup is often drizzled over pastries and ice creams and in its hardened form makes a great cand... (more)

Fragrantica's team of international writers discuss five of their favorite caramel fragrances. What are yours?

L'Eau Couture: Chanel No.5 L'Eau Aims and MissesL'Eau Couture: Chanel No.5 L'Eau Aims and Misses

Columns 11/23/16 10:52 (26 comments)

Which is the most memorable tagline in perfume advertising? "Promise her anything but give her Arpege" fares high up there to be sure, though "You stay dry. She gets wet" for Faberge's Brut is a fierce contestant . Chanel, classy outfit that it is, thought of a really good but tamer one recently upon the launch of their modernized version of the classic No.5, L'Eau. "You know me and you don't". There, in a simple juxtapositi... (more)

A look into how No.5 L'Eau is aimed at a new generation with a revamped story-telling of an old tale. Will it capture its intended audience? We explore its concept, presentation and advertising to ...

Best in Show: Seasonal Spices - Cloves (2016)Best in Show: Seasonal Spices - Cloves (2016)

Best in Show 11/20/16 09:29 (31 comments)

We began our exploration of the spices of the season in our article about nutmeg . We return in our giant ship of the past to the Spice Islands for that elusive flowering bud that emits one of the richest of all spice scents: Cloves. Many do not know that the hard, dark brown spice that grinds down to a coarse and mealy powder is actually the dried bud from a flowering tree,  Syzygium aromaticum . It’s native to the small Moluccas Islands of Indonesia. However, they were... (more)

The closed buds of a rare tree bring forth the warm, spicy promises of the season through the lore of cloves.

Best in Show: The Perfumes of Sonia ConstantBest in Show: The Perfumes of Sonia Constant

Best in Show 11/13/16 06:37 (6 comments)

As writers for Fragrantica, we are fortunate to become familiar with the work of our peers and gain access to information this way. Fellow writer Sergey Borisov  conducted such an intriguing and insightful interview with perfumer Sonia Constant that we knew we’d love to explore her work at greater length. It is with this thought in mind that we present our latest Best in Show highlighting perfumer  Sonia Constant . Looking at the wide breadth of her... (more)

Creator of the immensely popular Tom Ford Noir Pour Femme, Sonia Constant is a fascinating force in contemporary perfumery.

Best in Show: Seasonal Spices - Nutmeg (2016)Best in Show: Seasonal Spices - Nutmeg (2016)

Best in Show 11/06/16 08:57 (51 comments)

Wars have been fought across thousands of miles in the quest to control spice. But did you know that the great war of the Spice Islands began because of nutmeg? The hunger for this warm, oily, aromatic fruit seed was so intense and so profitable, that the Dutch East India Company knew it was better to fight a war for control of the future than to remain at the whims of traders. Yet we can appreciate the depth of yearning that must have gripped the imagination of Europeans and North Af... (more)

From the War of the Spice Islands to today's Oriental perfumes, nutmeg is the king of the cornucopia.

Autumn Aromas in Kyoto, Krasnodar and AthensAutumn Aromas in Kyoto, Krasnodar and Athens

Columns 11/02/16 11:01 (11 comments)

Inspired by the scentscapes of our favorite environments, Fragrantica's international writers discuss the autumnal aromas that they associate with cities around the globe. What kinds of scents permeate the air in your own hometowns or favorite vacation destinations? Leave us a comment below. Part 1:  Autumn Aromas in Boston, Lisbon, San Diego & Amsterdam   KYOTO Dr. Marlen Elliot Harrison: The aromas of Kyoto in autumn are direct... (more)

Colors, tastes and smells of fall.

Cologne Drinks: Ingesting a LegendCologne Drinks: Ingesting a Legend

1001 Past Tales 10/31/16 07:07 (8 comments)

Elvis Costello and the Attractions spat it out plain as day: "And you're drinking down the Eau de Cologne. And you're spitting out the Kodachrome. You better watch your step." So what if you poured that bottle of eau de cologne not onto your freshly-bathed flesh but down your oesophagus and into your stomach? As many Russian testimonies will manifest it could be the recipe for an early death. According to Sarah Boseley and Luke Harding reporting for The Guardian i... (more)

From destitute working-class Russians to well-heeled society ladies in Western Europe Eau de Cologne drinking has actually been a habit with long legs in history. We explore the whys and hows.

Best in Show: Penhaligon's (2016)Best in Show: Penhaligon's (2016)

Best in Show 10/30/16 11:08 (31 comments)

Established in the late 1860s by William Henry Penhaligon, a barber from Cornwall, Penhaligon's is one of England's oldest, continuously operating perfumeries and a rarity in that many of its original fragrances are still on the market today. The company's first perfume, Hammam Bouquet , was launched in 1872, inspired by the aromas of the Turkish Hammam (baths) that neighbored Penhaligon's Jeremyn Street barber shop, a melange of musky rose and woody lavender. B... (more)

Our editors discuss their favorite fragrances from one of England's oldest perfume houses.

Prada La Femme: Creamy Tension for Modern TemptressesPrada La Femme: Creamy Tension for Modern Temptresses

Fragrance Reviews 10/26/16 07:13 (12 comments)

Perfumer Daniela Roche-Andrier  has seemingly effortlessly managed to fuse a distinct olfactory style through the Prada scent collection. It beautifully pitches the traditional expectation of full-bodied luxuria with contemporary sophistication and humor, gaining a dedicated following in its wake, judging by the best-selling status of the Iris and Amber collections respectively.   The beautiful tension between white florals and vetiver is the building block of the... (more)

When flamboyant sensuality and modern sparseness collide the results can be surprisingly appealing.

Best in Show: Chypre Fragrances (2016)Best in Show: Chypre Fragrances (2016)

Best in Show 10/16/16 10:55 (52 comments)

Some say that the first chypre (French for Cyprus, but in reference to the island, not the tree) began in 1917 with the launch of the famous Chypre de Coty , a pre-oriental blend of sharp citruses laid over oakmoss, patchouli, a floral bouquet, styrax (benzoin), civet and musk. However, one only needs to examine perfume history closely to understand that actually Guerlain with their Chypre de Paris and d'Orsay with their Chypre d'Orsay actually preceded Coty b... (more)

Named for the island of Cyprus and containing bergamot, labdanum and oakmoss, the chypre is discussed in this week's Best in Show. What is your favorite chypre?

Best in Show: My Fragrant Unicorn (2016)Best in Show: My Fragrant Unicorn (2016)

Best in Show 10/09/16 10:23 (65 comments)

There are certain ways in which perfume fanatics resemble kids. Recall how you were searching high and low for that ultra-rare Pokemon card that was missing from your otherwise quite smart album? Recall worrying a loose tooth, tempting you to go over it again and again with your tongue, despite it being a tad painful, wishing it in the palm of your hand already? Or replaying a favorite experience over and over in your head, eager to describe it in great detail, the memory gaining in m... (more)

Inspired by a thread in our Forum, our international team discusses their wishlist fragrances, some remain elusive while others have finally been acquired. What are yours?

B683 by Marc-Antoine Barrois: The Little Prince of PerfumeB683 by Marc-Antoine Barrois: The Little Prince of Perfume

Niche Perfumery 10/08/16 06:40 (One comment)

Would you pick up a bottle of a perfume cryptically named just B683? The question is not that unusual for niche perfume enthusiasts who love to search through what seems like lab coded bottles with mysterious jus hiding inside. It might, however, raise an eyebrow in the mainstream market where designer fragrances bear names with allusions to seduction and beauty. Nevertheless, this is the name that Marc-Antoine Barrois has chosen for his first foray into perfume after establishing himself ... (more)

A code-named perfume that references Le Petit Prince from the French haute-couture designer. His first.

Best in Show: The Fragrances of Annick Menardo (2016)Best in Show: The Fragrances of Annick Menardo (2016)

Best in Show 10/02/16 08:34 (26 comments)

Some might say that it has been challenging for women to forge successful careers in the traditionally male-dominated world of perfumers; a review of famous noses certainly shows a disproportionate number of men to women. But this week's perfumer in the spotlight has crafted a range of iconic fragrances over a career that spans 3 decades and she shows no signs of stopping. Born in Cannes, France, Annick Menardo  originally wanted to be a psychiatrist. L... (more)

From Bvlgari to Biagiotti, this week's perfumer in the spotlight has crafted some of the most successful masterpieces of modern perfumery. What are your favorites?

Best in Show: L'Artisan Parfumeur (2016)Best in Show: L'Artisan Parfumeur (2016)

Best in Show 09/25/16 09:04 (45 comments)

If asked to name the most whimsical fragrance house established in the 20th century, many of us would easily suggest L'Artisan Parfumeur, created in 1978 by the visionary Jean Laporte. The brand website explains that everything began with a banana challenge: L’Artisan Parfumeur was the result of a challenge, a plaisanterie . Due to his training as a chemist, a friend asked Jean Laporte if he could create a banana scent to wear with a costume of the same frui... (more)

Our international writers discuss the whimsy and creativity of one of the world's most popular niche houses.

Olivier Durbano Lapis LazuliOlivier Durbano Lapis Lazuli

New Fragrances 09/16/16 08:49 (3 comments)

Lapis Lazuli , the gorgeous vivid dark blue stone that shines under the glare of the sun, is actually not a crystal, like previous gemstones that have inspired Olivier Durbano , but a rock composed of several minerals which shine with the full splendor of the night-time sky. The line of Parfums de Pierres Poemes, i.e. perfumed poems inspired by gemstones, is enriched with this vivacious new scent that explores all avenues of the symbolism of blue, from spiritua... (more)

The color of the sky and the stone that glows with its vivid blue is transformed into a new niche fragrance by Olivier Durbano.

La Vie Est Belle: Dissecting a Best-SellerLa Vie Est Belle: Dissecting a Best-Seller

Fragrance Reviews 09/13/16 09:54 (50 comments)

Why did The Da Vinci Code and 50 Shades of Grey become such international hits, despite them being contrived in what concerns the former and outrageously badly executed in what concerns the latter? Explaining the mass appeal of Lancome's La Vie Est Belle giga-box-office-buster, and offering reasons behind its smashing success, is no less a feat than scalpelling the surface under those publishing hits. They offer titillation to the public, to be sure; is that what it takes... (more)

What exactly is it that makes this specific Lancome fragrance tick like mad? Why has it met with its audience in this extraordinary way? We investigate the reasons reviewing the scent.

Christian Louboutin Bikini Questa Sera, Tornade Blonde, Trouble in HeavenChristian Louboutin Bikini Questa Sera, Tornade Blonde, Trouble in Heaven

New Fragrances 09/13/16 09:17 (3 comments)

Who hasn't desired or ogled, as applicable, those vicious and gorgeous red-soled Louboutin shoes walking down the catwalk and the red carpet alike? The brand that made us look into luxurious shoes anew ventured into cosmetics with their launch of nail polish and lipstick/gloss (called Loubilaque) in 2014 and they're now extending their adventurous foray into cosmetics and beauty with a trio of perfumes aimed at the luxury seeking customer. The eye-... (more)

Louboutin: Three Perfumes Introduced by the Famous Shoe-Maker Brand

Best in Show: Vetivers for the Vetiver Wary (2016)Best in Show: Vetivers for the Vetiver Wary (2016)

Best in Show 09/11/16 07:15 (41 comments)

Foreward by Dr. Chandra Shekhar Gupta from the Fragrantica VETIVER page: Essence from the Eastern Asian weed grass Vetiveria zizanoid falls under the woods category thanks to its musty, dry, woody scent with bitter chocolate and smoke facets. Very popular in niche perfumery and masculine fragrances, vetiver has a long and rich history. In India it has been used to make blinds necessary to keep out the intense heat. When the blinds are sprinkled with water they emit the vet... (more)

Our international writers discuss their favorite vetiver fragrances for those wanting a lighter touch of the grassy root. What are yours?

Best in Show: The Fragrances of Alberto MorillasBest in Show: The Fragrances of Alberto Morillas

Best in Show 09/04/16 04:20 (56 comments)

Few perfumers can boast as successful a career as Alberto Morillas . Spanning 4 decades of not just successful, but legendary creations, Morillas has given us some of the world's most iconic aromas. His first fragrance was 1981's Must de Cartier, EDT (eventually re-launched as Must II) and his most recent work includes collaborations with Bvlgari, Dali and Ferragamo. A native of Seville, Spain who moved to Switzerland at the age of 10, Morillas was ins... (more)

Our international writers discuss their favorites from the legendary perfumer, Alberto Morillas. What are yours?

more Articles by Author Elena Vosnaki
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