Sunday, April 2, 2017

Short & Sweet: A Brief Interlude on the Virtues of Essential Oils

Coco Chanel once famously stated that a woman who doesn’t wear perfume has no future. Coco did, in fact, “borrow” that quote for the marketing and advertising purposes of Chanel No. 5, however. The true author was French poet Paul Valéry. And though I do adore the smell of my classic Chanel No. 5, the borrowed and often true witticisms of Coco, and French poetry in general, I do not adore the hefty price tag it takes in order for a girl to smell intoxicating these days.

That’s why I’ve turned almost exclusively to essential oils. And that’s probably why you don’t see any fancy advertising on my pages from “delectable” scents-du-jour. Because instead of advocating that you waste your precious dollars on hyped synthetic scents with an overblown price tag due to slick marketing, I recommend that you visit your local health food store and combine fragrances for a do it yourself custom scent that you’ll love at a fraction of the price. It will save you tons of money and permit you to smell exactly as luscious as you choose, on a dime.

And now, a word about essential oils. It’s really not as hard as you think it is, to create a custom signature scent and dive into the wonderful world of essential oils. If you’re a floral person, like I am, essential oils are especially straightforward. Simply go to your local health food store and peruse the delectable scents. I love fragrance combining florals like jasmine, rose, and gardenia. If you want to bring in a bit of earthy notes, try adding Sandalwood, which I happen to adore with a Persian rose. This is my favorite combination….sweet, soft, complex, and hauntingly seductive.

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I love Kuumba Made oils from Sprouts and Whole Foods. They are the tiniest little vials of potent essential oils with a rollerball applicator in tons of variety for you to choose from, and they’re just under $11 each. Go with one strong note or mix them up for your own heady concoction; you can’t go wrong.

And remember, the oils will remain fragrant longer than an alcohol-based spray, so you’re getting more fragrance for your buck. After all, doesn’t a girl have enough expenses to worry about in this day and age? Smelling good should not be one of them. Liberate yourself from pricey synthetic fragrances with the world of essential oils! You can thank me later. Jajajajaja.

Monday, April 8, 2013

Cheap, Gorgeous and Eco-Friendly Fragrance by Pacifica

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I must confess that I have a terrible weakness for my Jo Malone colognes in Orange Blossom and Red Roses, but at $60 for one ounce, the cost to remain lusciously fragrant is a little steep. That’s why I am thrilled to have found a cost-effective addition to my fragrance collection.

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Pacifica fragrances, sold at Whole Foods markets and online, are my newest treasure. I really love the scents in this line, my favorites being the Tahitian Gardenia, inspired by Tahiti’s sacred flower, and the equally unforgettable Persian Rose.

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Wear the florals together and it’s reminiscent of walking through blooming gardens in Europe. Or try Island Vanilla, a sweet and warm scent that stands on its own. Best of all is the price. A one-ounce spray is only $22, but I absolutely love the fact that the fragrances, which come in a bevy of yummy scents, are also available in a convenient perfume roll-on, above, $12, as well as in solid form, below, $9, making them super convenient, portable and affordable!

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You can throw them in your gym bag or purse and rest assured that you’ll smell sweeter than the competition, and all at a smart price.

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The company, co-founded by the beautiful Brook Harvey-Taylor, above, is also extremely eco-conscious so you can feel good about supporting Pacifica. In addition to their partnership with Jean-Michel Cousteau’s Ocean Future’s Society–dedicated to preserving our global ocean–Pacifica recycles and uses post-consumer materials. All their boxes are 100% recyclable, and their company goal is to have zero product-manufacturing waste in their factory.

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Pacifica fragrances also come in eco-friendly soy candle form, $22, made with lead-free wicks. I am dying to try the company’s coffee/sugar detox scrub, $28, above, and their tempting variety of body butters, $15 for 8 ounces. This is an awesome value, and they’re sure to drench dry skin in much-needed moisture because they are rich in shea butter and almond oil. Perfect for a Mother’s Day gift.

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Now every woman on a budget can smell delectable 100% of the time! My work here is done.

Sunday, November 25, 2012

What A Girl Wants: Kilian Hennessy Perfume

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Every saint has a past and every sinner has a future, but every girl–whether she’s naughty or nice–deserves at least one bottle of perfume by Kilian.

Kilian Hennessy, pictured above, is heir to the Hennessy cognac, but it is his passion for perfumery for which he is revered. His new collection, In the Garden of Good and Evil, is composed of three scents: In the City of Sin, Forbidden Games, and Good Girl Gone Bad. The delectable trio are at once delicious, complex and completely harmonious. Packaged in identical white bottles beautifully embellished with raised floral braiding, a Kilian fragrance would make a most-welcome gift this holiday season.

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In the City of Sin is rich and spicy, resonating deeply of sweet cardomom and cinnamon which merge with fruity top notes to create a delectable mélange. In a word? Divine.

Forbidden Games opens on a heady mix of fruits–apple, peach and plum–before blooming into a floral heart of Bulgarian rose and jasmine, with sweetly smoldering undercurrents of Madagascar vanilla and Laotian honey.

My favorite scent in the collection, Good Girl Gone Bad, is a profound mix of fruits and flowers, ripe with unmistakeable tuberose. Sensual and unrestrained.

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As if the fragrances themselves aren’t reason enough to splurge, Kilian sweetens the pot even further with an outstanding packaging–each bottle is entombed in a fabulous white hinged clutch, above, that’s adorned with a writhing gold serpent with glistening eyes. It’s a prize that would tempt even the strong-willed.

Kilian’s creations are $245 for 1.7 ounces and available exclusively at Saks Fifth Avenue stores. Call 415.986.4300 and have them charge-send you a bottle for your sinner or your saint.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Pretty, Please

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Beauty Shall Save the World’s newsletter bundles the best of the best in beauty products, unforgettable gifts, fashion & decor from around the world and sends it straight to your inbox. So if you don’t have time to surf blogs all day, you can still stay up-to-date on the latest.

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Thursday, September 13, 2012

Heaven Scents–Estée Lauder’s Private Collection Fragrances

I am totally crushing on Estée Lauder’s Private Collection fragrances, so much so that I have to have one of each!

The three scents, created by Estée Lauder’s granddaughter Aerin, are reminiscent of my two Jo Malone favorites–Red Roses and Orange Blossom–each one a heady, imaginative blend and perfect for floral lovers such as myself.

Encased in identical elegant crystal bottles, the hammered gold cap was inspired by a necklace inherited from her grandmother, Estée Lauder. I like to wear all of them at once; it’s like walking through blooming gardens in Europe.

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Tuberose Gardenia combines the rich essences of two magnificent white flowers in one delectable potion. All I can say is: Sublime. A must for any fragrance collector. This is a great opportunity to experience tuberose at its best.

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Amber and Ylang Ylang is warm and deep, luscious and complex. The richness of amber and ylang ylang combined with earthy sandalwood and sweet vanilla make this fragrance more than memorable. I call it haunting.

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Jasmine and White Moss is the third fragrance created by Estée Lauder’s granddaughter Aerin. It’s fresh and sparkling yet delicate.

Estée Lauder’s Private Collection fragrances are $85 for 1 oz., or $145 for 2.5 oz. at Nordstrom.

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Pretty, Please

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Beauty Shall Save the World’s newsletter bundles the best of the best in beauty products, unforgettable gifts, fashion & decor from around the world and sends it straight to your inbox. So if you don’t have time to surf blogs all day, you can still stay up-to-date on the latest.

Want beauty? It’s free, and worth it. Just enter your email below and you’re good to go.

 

 

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Dip Into The World of Diptyque for Valentine’s, Weddings and Beyond…

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There will always be a soft spot in every girl’s heart for flowers and candy, but flowers die and chocolates don’t last long. While nothing is eternal, for a distinctive and lingering gift for Valentine’s Day or any day, I highly recommend Diptyque (pronounced dip-TEEK).

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Famous for their unmistakable luxury candles, Diptyque also has a new line of unisex body products that are bomb–perfect for mom or dad, your girl, your guy, your child, grandparents or a cherished friend. Diptyque has something for everyone, even elegant corporate gifts for the discerning employer.

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If you’re into aromatherapy and the powerful transformative possibilities of scent, you simply must spoil your Valentine with something from Diptyque. Trust me, they will love it.

Pure, Paraffin, Pleasure…

The diminutive Diptyque candle smells like nothing you’ve ever experienced, and believe me, you can really smell it. The standard votive boasts a tireless 60 hours of burn time and will undoubtedly outshine its cheaper competitors. It’s a smart choice.

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With a Diptyque candle, you get what you pay for. Created using powerful concentrations of only the finest essential oils steeped in pure paraffin, they’re sure to set the mood for a romantic evening. Plus, a Diptyque candle will actually stick around long after Valentine’s Day has ended. Even unlit you can still smell the candle in the room.

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You can choose from an endless exquisite bouquet of more than 50, yes fifty scents–that’s an amazing variety–in five categories of flowers, herbs, fruity, woods and spicy, so there’s something for everyone, no matter your preference. It’s a complete collection.

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One of my favorite memories is the night I dined at the opening of a Francis Ford Coppola restaurant in California, where a flurry of Baies Diptyque candles and their intoxicating aroma seduced me.

Every celebrity is said to have their favorite Diptyque scent, and Coppola’s is Baies. It soon became mine too, and of the many scents to choose from, I still prefer Baies to this day.

Baies, pronounced, simply, ‘Bay,’ is a French term of endearment, meaning sweetie, or some such.

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It’s composed of Bulgarian rose with notes of blackcurrant leaves–an irresistible melange of fruit and floral.

Reminiscent of a walk through blooming gardens in Europe, it smells absolutely delicious, and every time I encounter it, after all these years, I’m immediately drawn back to the first time I experienced it–that beautiful balmy night at the restaurant. It’s a powerful testament to the virtues of aromatherapy and memory recall.

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The Art of Body Care

Once mistaken as primarily high-end home fragrance, Diptyque recently launched an ambrosial offering of luxury body care products for men and women, known as The Art of Body Care, to complement their lesser-known collection of eaux de toilette which has in fact existed since 1968.

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Pick a simple spray or dip into the many tempting products from the line. The Art of Body Care is based on the history of beauty from around the world and includes so many gorgeous things–such as a hand balm from Spain, below, using organic ingredients from that region.

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Or their luscious body oil with iris flower from Italy, which can be used wet or dry.

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You can put a capful in the tub, or apply it directly on the skin. It’s a very luxurious olive oil and soaks right in so it won’t get on your clothes.

Common Scents That Aren’t So Common

Unlike ordinary synthetic fragrances, the Diptyque scents are inspired by essences commonly found in nature, and all the body products are unisex, so if you buy them for your sweetheart, there’s always the chance you can share.

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A beautiful body cream from Istanbul, not Constantinople–lush with myrrh and roses–is a personal favorite of my friend Gregory Costanza, former regional sales manager of the intimate but elegant San Francisco Diptyque boutique.

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It may surprise you that a man might enjoy wearing a floral such as rose, but that convention is worn-out. In Europe people are much more liberal with what constitutes a ‘feminine’ fragrance and gender specificity has been replaced by good taste.

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The notes of myrrh and roses found in the body cream can be tied over to home fragrance too, making a great candle combination if you care to experiment. Remember, you can customize the Diptyque scents for your home and yourself by choosing any of the fragrance families and combining until you discover what suits you. This is the modern approach to aromatherapy.

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A lot of couples come in to share fragrance, which is a great idea if you live near a boutique. The Diptyque staff is very hands-on with their clients. They really aim to please.

Because fragrance is highly personal, you can go to a boutique with your Valentine and identify the scents that you’re attracted to, and then you can coordinate them, together.

But there are only 14 Diptyque boutiques in the world, so if you can’t make it to Paris, London, Doha, Qatar or Dubai, you can call one of the three shops in the United States and let their accommodating, knowledgeable staff guide you on your purchase and educate you on how to burn a candle properly. Believe it or not, there’s an art to that too.

For ultimate convenience, most Diptyque products can come elegantly pre-wrapped, or you can opt to do it yourself.

Fragrance may be simple and straightforward for some people, or infinitely complex and indulgent. Whatever your approach, Diptyque definitely delivers.