As a little girl, I happily drained many bottles of Love’s Baby Soft. The original pink-capped wonder was my “little-girl” fragrance, and I spritzed my way through gift-set after gift-set. While I also had a few other sweet-concoctions targeted at my tiny coin-purse, it wasn’t until Coty’s L’Effleur that I had my next “signature” fragrance.
Coty L’Effleur. I was 12, and my best friend at the time was 13. It was her scent, and she was so mature, so much older, so sophisticated, that of course I made it mine too. When I think of L’Effleur compared to the fragrances 12-year-olds are wearing today, I’m nearly gagged by giggles. By today’s standards, L’Effleur’s soapy-floral bouquet would be considered grandmotherly. I wore that, and also stole spritzes from my mother’s small collection (Ysatis, Tresor, a Mueget oil, and a Vetiver oil), until my teens, when I found MY scent…
Opium parfum. I was 16, it was the mid-nineties—well past Opium’s heyday—but nobody was wearing that sort of thing in my social network, and it felt incredibly… daring. It had spice, and it had sparkle. I’ll never forget the fizzing sensation on my skin, like a champagne made with blood: it was darkness, but it was elegance, and it appealed to my teen-aged self. The bottle from which those memories sprang was an old one. A big, squat 70’s era bottle, which required just one dab, and you could party all night long wafting it’s seductive promises. In my late teens and early twenties, I wore Ralph Lauren Polo Sport for a few years (and several bottles), because if I couldn’t have my Opium, then gosh-darn-it, I’d smell like a man!
When the Polo Sport romance ended, I must have gone through 10-bottles of Gap Grass. An EDT that lasts about 10 minutes on skin (but smells delightfully like it’s namesake), I’d carry a bottle around in my purse and constantly re-apply. When it was discontinued, I bought up an armload of stock, and within months was on the prowl for something new.
Later, I wore Banana Republic’s Woman, which I don’t think I ever actually liked, and then later still, Elizabeth Arden Green Tea, followed by Elizabeth Arden Mediterranean, which I actively hated. Yet still wore. I made it about 25% through that horrifying bottle before swapping it for something else on MUA.
I then turned to verbena, and wore Le Couvent des Minimes‘ Verbena & Lemon, which was pretty enough, but not satisfying as a perfume. That bottle spent the duration of it’s existence as linen spray.
Just when i felt like giving up, that there wasn’t a “note” for me, or a perfume I could make my own, I encountered the most wonderfully fragrant rose I’d ever smelled… which led to a search for rose perfumes, which led to the Mother Ship (Now Smell This), which led… Here.