Category Archives: Elixirs & Fragrances

Top 3 world’s best-selling perfumes

Oh la la!!!!

For the first time since its release in 1999, J’Adore by Dior has beaten Chanel No 5 into second place as the world’s best-selling perfume.

Thierry Mugler’s Angel remains in the third place.

Let rediscover these fragrances

J’adore by Dior

J’adore is a floral fragrance which symbolises absolute, sophisticated and glamour feminity. The bottle shapes like a  Greek amphora.

•Top notes: Ylang ylang
•Heart notes: Damask rose, jasmine, plum and orchid
•Base: amaranth, musk, blackberry  and sandalwood
Chanel N°5

Chanel N°5 is the first perfume in the floral-aldehyde group and the first by the quantity of aldehydes in its juice. The legend said that  an assistant overdosed the aldehydes in the composition by mistake.

The first Chanel N°5 was designed by Chanel herself and represents her classical principle “the less is more”, the bottle was a simple rectangular flacon which looked like Place Vendome in Paris.

•Top notes: Aldehydes, neroli, Ylang ylang, bergamot, lemon

•Heart notes: orris boots, jasmine, lily of the valley and rose
•Base notes: amber, sandalwood, patchouli, musk, civet, vanilla, oakmoss and vetiver.
Angel by Thierry Mugler is a Oriental Vanilla fragrance for women. Angel was launched in 1992.
•top notes: melon, coconut, mandarin, orange, bergamot, jasmine, cassia
•Heart notes: honey, apricot, blackberry, plum, orchid, peach, jasmine, lily of the valley, red berries and roses
•Base notes: tonka bean, vanilla, amber, musk, patchouli and chocolate.

What a frag! Part 2/3

Here is a famous one.

Diorling with its leather chypré scent and crystal flacon. Launched in 1963 the nose of this fragrance is Paul Vacher. It is valued between €750 and €900.

I had the opportunity to smell it through my work and although it is not my type of fragrance, there is something magical about the scent.  The notes are in perfect harmony (too perfect for me?)  and the emulsion of emotions can really turn you on.

Elisabeth Arden created “It’s you” in 1939. The crystal bottle representing a hand holding a fragrance (not a big fan of the bottle)is worth between € 850 and € 1,200.

Despite the coldness (in my opinion) of the bottle’s appearance It’s You is a very romantic floral perfume. It’s light, delicate and definitely a summer frag.

Lucretia Vanderbilt ” blue opaque glass flacon was launched around 1928. A toiletry line had been launched with it. This is the kind of bottle you can see in boudoirs. I am a big fan of the luxury side of this bottle. It’s valued between €900 and €1,200.


« Près de vous » or in English « near you » is a fragrance from Rigaud. The flacon is a white crystal bottle with polychromatic decoration and translucent enamel.  We can see that the bottle has gothic inspiration and it is worth between €1,500 and €1,700.

What a frag! part 3/3

This bottle!!! I do love this bottle  !!!! I would buy it. So cute. It’s “Calendal” from Molinard, (1929) Worth between € 2,200 and €2,800.

I find it so modern, so chic, and so luxurious.

” My talisman “ from Gabilla is a very rare white opaque crystal flacon stylised with little flowers.

My talisman was launched in 1926 and can be bought for between €6,500 and €8,000.

With its Blackcurrant  top this crystal bottle from  René Lalique  called “ Flacon Bouchon Cassis” was launched in 1920 and is worth between € 7,000 and € 10,000.

Loads of fake bottles are sold online.  Hopefully the one sold in this auction sale is not a fake!

Last and not least of this auction sales is the cheapest one.  “Indiscret” de Lucien Lelong.

The bottle represents a long skirt and is worth between € 50 and € 80. I think it’s a good investment for a 1935 fragrance especially since I know that it is a floral fruity fragrance with mandarin orange, galbanum and bergamot for top notes. Tuberose, iris, African orange flower, jasmine, ylang-ylang, rose and geranium as heart notes ; woody base notes.

Do you think the bottles above are expensive?

What about this one ????

This one holds the record . And it is from Guerlain.  We can’t really see it but this bottle is engraved with the Guerlain headquarter address in Paris (rue de la Paix).

Sold at a record price of45,000 €

What a frag! Part 1

You may have guessed that I am a fragrance fanatic! I love perfumes.  I never finish a bottle (especially when I don’t have it in my collection); I always like to keep a centimetre of juice just to be able to smell it over and over again without wearing it.

As I may have mentioned in my earlier articles I have around 131 different bottles at home from Miracle de Lancôme to the latest Million or Beauty by Calvin Klein.

Do u want to bid?

A few weeks ago, I received an invite for an auction sale at Neret-Minet (Auction specialist founded in Paris in 1691) hosted last Friday in Paris. Serge Albisetti (don’t ask me who he is, I just don’t know. He might be a collector of ancient fragrances and might need a lot of money as his fragrances are so expensive) is selling some bottles (empty by the way) from his collection with estimations starting from €50 to €15,000!!!

Can you imagine that!!! Oh la la!  My 130 bottles multiplied by (let’s say) €8000 equals MILLIONS!!! God!! That is the best investment ever!

But, I love my bottles too much for this sacrifice. “J’ai une idée” I’m gonna buy all my fragrances in pairs: one for my collection and one for my future auction sales in 50 years. I do think that it is a nice idea even if I might be too old to have much fun with the money.

Anyway, let’s have a look on what was sold at Neret-Minet Tessier last Friday.

This is the most expensive bottle estimated at €15,000!!! This white glass bottle has lizards’ ears (I wonder why?) and it was launched in 1912. It’s a fragrance from René Lalique. My dream would have been to smell the scent!

Another one from Rene Lalique named ‘trois guêpes’ in English ” Three wasps “ is valued between €7,000 and €10,000.

Which fragrance for whom?

Now I know that woody, cyprus and other types of fragrance. But as a fresh, happy person which type is best for me?  And is there something for me on Saturday  evenings, when I feel sexy, provocative and sensual?

Yes, indeed! Here some tools:






The cool, fresh and flowery fragrances, with immediate charm, are loved by extroverts and those with outgoing personalities.







The oriental notes with enveloping scent seduce the mysterious and sensual women.








Powdery scents are appreciated by emotional, narcissistic, candid women.







The flowery-fruity reunite the optimistic and aspirational personalities.











Chyprés please women of character, ambition and determination.






So now, all you have to do is choose your fragrance according to your moods, skin  and taste.

Good luck and enjoy!

Still don’t know which perfume to choose?

Ok, you now know that you should test every perfume before buying it. But how do you know that the fragrance will suit your personality?

Here are some additional leads to help you choose: did you know that there were 7 big olfactive families?

Here is the traditional classification that the majority of professional perfumers use.

Citrus: This is basically a natural oil extracted from the zest of a fruit. It is where we found the first Cologne, elaborated from the  extracted oil of lemon, orange, grapefruit, mandarin and bergamot.

Examples include Eau de Rochas, Eau Sauvage , Azurée de Estée Lauder and Acqua Di Parma Colonia.

Floral Bouquet: This is a combination of the fragrances of several flowers in a perfume composition.  It is the most important family and includes scents elaborated from flowers such as a rose,  violet, jasmine,  lilac, lily of the valley,  narcissus,  tuberose and more…

Here are some famous fragrances: Air Du Temps by Nina Ricci, Anais Anais, Beauty by Calvin Klein. Fleur de Rocaille by Caron and Rose by Chloé.

Fougère: translated into English as ‘fern’, it is built on a base of lavender, coumarin and oakmoss. Houbigant’s Fougère Royale pioneered the use of this base. Many men’s fragrances belong to this family of fragrances, which is characterized by its sharp herbaceous and woody scent.

Names include Drakkar Noir by Guy Laroche, Eternity for Men, Duel for Life and the NEW Mont Blanc New legend.

Les Chyprés: translated into English as ‘Cyprus’, includes fragrances built on a similar accord consisting of bergamot, oakmoss, patchouli, and labdanum. This family of fragrances is named after a perfume by François Coty and examples include the new L heure fougueuse IV de Cartier , Chance by Chanel, Aromatics by Estée Lauder and the new Very Irresistible l’Intense by Givenchy.

Wood: Fragrances that are dominated by woody scents, typically of agarwood, sandalwood and cedarwood. Patchouli, with its camphoraceous smell, is commonly found in these perfumes.

Examples include  Ralph Lauren Big Pony 1, , Jazz de Yves St Laurent  and the new signature Summer for Him by Victoria Beckham.

Ambered or “Oriental”: A large fragrance class featuring the sweet slightly animalistic scents of ambergris or labdanum, often combined with vanilla, Tonka bean, flowers and wood.  It can be enhanced with camphorous oils and incense resins, which bring to mind Victorian imagery from the Middle and Far East.

Examples include Shalimar by Guerlain, the new Agent by Agent Provocateur, the new New York Oud by Bond No 9  and Kenzo Amour de Parfum.

Leather: A family of fragrances which feature the scents of honey, tobacco, wood and wood tars in its middle or base notes and a scent that alludes to leather.

Perfumes include Only The Brave by Bunka, the new Joop Sexy in Pink, the traditional Cuir de Russie by Chanel and Jolie Madame by Balmain.


Skin and fragrance

I remember going out with Sandy and telling her how much I loved her fragrance.  She responded, “ I love it as well!  It’s Deep Red by Hugo Boss”.  As soon as she told me I almost bought it, without even trying it first. However, when I tested the fragrance, it smelled disgusting on me.

So what happened?


Fragrances can produce different scents on different skin depending on your natural scent skin type.  For example, oily skin tends to absorb better nice-smelling substances whereas smoother and drier skin will not retain them so easily. Ideally, it would be smart “to test” the fragrance on zones of pulsation (neck or wrist) and wait to discover if the scent suits you (see previous article).

You are what you smell!

A fragrance is a signature: a natural scent or a scent embalmed by a perfume reflects someone’s


Flowery, chypré, ambery, powdery or fruity, your scent will accompany you as the seasons go by according to your moods.

Smell, think, love, hate and decide which fragrance will unveil your personality.

But how do I choose the right fragrance for me?


Have you ever tried a fragrance in a store, loved it , bought it and then gone home only to discover that the smell had changed to a scent that made you want to empty your stomach?

This is regular occurrence. Here is a quick and easy tutorial to help you understand how to choose a fragrance that really does suit you.

First it is important to understand the art of scent. A fragrance has 3 phases: birth, life and death. It evolves over time and does not leave the same scent at the moment we apply it as it does a few hours later. Fragrances are like a brilliant (or not so brilliant) book that we open (Top Notes), discover and read (Heart notes) and that we finish, feeling either fulfilment or disillusionment (Base notes).

How many times have you started reading a book and hated the end? The same can happen with a fragrance and you need to research it thoroughly before making your purchase.

Next time you are shopping in the House of Fraser or John Lewis try a fragrance on your wrist and have a walk around the store. After 2 to 4 hours the fragrance will have reached its “hearted state “and you will be able to assess whether or not you like it.

For my part, I love almost all fragrances at first but after a few hours I hate almost every one of them!

Try this out and tell me your experiences.

We all love spring!

Viva Spring, the season we all love! Spring is a synonym of rebirth, growth and renewal. The days become longer, the sun starts to shine, flowers begin to blossom and we can feel, see and smell nature waking from its winter slumber. We are all blooming!

Spring inspires us to go shopping (or window shopping) for shorter dresses, skirts and trousers.  We indulge in summer scarves, hats, trendy bags and for the sensual touch we buy the latest trendy fragrance.

This year, I don’t want to  make any mistakes. I want to choose the fragrance that is best for me.