Sunday, April 22, 2012

The Divine Comfort of Annick Goutal Nuit Etoilée

I present another beautifully constructed, aroma-therapeutic, always appropriate, refreshing, smart and sophisticated Annick Goutal creation:  Nuit Etoilée, the newest fragrance from this stunning house.  Simultaneously refreshing, cooling, comforting and eventually warming, the scent has consistently captured my intrigue over the course of the last week.  I apply it generously, enjoying the initial blast of citrus which fades to reveal an exotic forest emanating the scent of pine needles and balsam fir.  Just as I dream of resting on a bed of soft leaves, moist dirt and scented pine needles, the warm, musky angelica seeds gently arrive, lingering on my skin for hours and reminding me that all is well.

To describe Nuit Etoilée as gorgeous would be an understatement.  Exquisite suits it better but does not capture entirely its artistic beauty.  For demonstration's sake, if I scented all of my clothing, my hair, my skin, my home and even my car where I spend the bulk of my time with Nuit Etoilée, I still would not be overwhelmed by this fragrance.  I would relish it as it calmed and soothed me in moments of elation or stress. (I have learned through life experience that even elation can be toned down, for what goes up must come down!) The citrus is the most smooth, lighthearted citrus I can imagine.  If citrus can even be called mellow, it would apply here. The pine needles and balsam fir do not transport me to a Christmas Shoppe, but rather evoke the heart of the forest with a subtly suggestive nudge.  Finally, the angelica surrounded by everlasting flowers!! I am speechless.  Warm, glowing, and musky, it is the most grounding and soothing note I have ever experienced. 

Similar to my coveted   Les Nuits d'HadrienNuit Etoilée falls into the previously mentioned "always appropriate" category.  Rather than making a fragrance announcement as the wearer enters a room, this scent is much more private and personal.  I am not certain, in fact, if it provides any sillage.  That fact does not much matter when the divine juice truly possesses aroma-therapeutic qualities. 

The only downfall to Nuit Etoilée, and I really hesitate to point this out since I so clearly adore this scent, is that on my skin longevity is not its strong suit.  Perhaps if I slathered on unscented moisturizer first, it would linger a few more hours.  Nonetheless, I am happy to bring with me a smaller, decanted atomizer and spritz myself repeatedly throughout the day.  Well worth the extra effort?  Emphatically, "Yes!"  

The packaging is equally stunning, produced in icy blue glass which changes color depending on lighting.  Camille Goutal and Isabelle Doyen have really "hit it out of the park" with this creation and I strongly recommend it for day or night for anyone liking comforting woodsy, musky scents.  

Annick Goutal Nuit Etoilée will be available mid-May in Eau de Toilette at Saks Fifth Avenue.  A 3.4 oz. and 1.7 oz. traditional ribbed bottle will retail for $72 and $51 respectively.  A 3.4 oz. will also be available in a masculine square bottle for $72. 

Monday, April 16, 2012

Happy, Happy, Twirl, Twirl

Remember my review on Guerlain Cruel Gardenia?  If not, please just scroll down a bit and you will find it. The flower I was longing to embrace and call my own in that fragrance - majestic gardenia - eluded me.  Fret not!  I have found a white floral, fresh, green and gloriously gardenia-esque fragrance to place in my line up for spring.  It is Bond No. 9 Central Park West

The notes as listed by the house describe narcissus, ylang ylang and pepper at the top with orris, jasmine, linden and gardenia at the heart.  The base offers vetiver, musk, white oak and treemoss.  While I would love to say that I detect every note, I cannot tell a lie.  I do not.  Ylang ylang holds a place in my heart for its grounding qualities and it is most certainly here.  Jasmine makes a demure (not overly sensual) statement and narcissus does too, in a rich and green fashion.  However, the star of the show and the one to whom all applause should be directed outshines the other notes and does so in the most realistic, beautiful, fresh and inoffensive fashion.  Gardenia!  Richer and more attention-grabbing than Kai, less sharp than Chanel Gardenia and everything that Guerlain's gardenia offering was not, Bond No. 9 Central Park West offers a stately, grand white floral entirely based on gardenia.  I have found after sampling my entire sample vial for days that this fragrance just makes me happy.  I want to wear bright colors, dab a tiny little bit on the nape of my neck and prance and twirl like my three year old daughter.  To reference the name of the fragrance, perhaps we could prance and twirl happily in Central Park together.

I adore the bottle design with a very appropriate large pink flower flanked by strung beads at the neck which cleverly detaches as a bracelet.  The rest of the bottle is decorated by a bold houndstooth check pattern.  Central Park West is entirely appropriate for daywear when worn sparingly.  Do not douse.  This fragrance is ostentatious enough to fill an entire room!  I imagine a full bottle will last for years and I see its purchase in my near future.   

Bond No. 9 Central Park West is available at Bond No. 9 stores and Saks Fifth Avenue.  A 100ml bottle retails for $250, a 50ml bottle retails for $180, Body Silk retails for $180, a candle for $130 and shower gel for $75. 

Friday, April 06, 2012

Aura by Swarovski Winner!

Thank you to all who participated in the drawing for a full bottle of Aura by Swarovski.  I am very pleased to announce the winner according to  It is someone to whom I am honored and delighted to send the fragrance!  Congratulations goes to ...

Joshua Ryan!!

Please post your e-mail address as a comment here Joshua and I will contact you directly.  Enjoy your new fragrance!

Monday, April 02, 2012

Aura by Swarovski Draw!

Please comment below to be entered into a draw to win a full, 1.7 oz bottle of Aura by Swarovski Eau de Parfum.