There’s nothing quite like a good bougie candle to make your home feel extra fancy, warm and cozy all at the same time. By popular request I have an updated favorites roundup for the holiday season! My tried and true favorites remain the same with my top three favorite brands being Diptyque, Byredo and Cire Trudon. Many of these I started burning in late fall and will continue using many of these through early spring.
1. Diptyque Baies is in my top three favorites and this one is my most burned, repurchased and recommended candle ever! It has notes of rose and blackcurrant, it smells like berries and rose to me. I’ve bought this in almost all the different sizes. If you are new to Diptyque this is the one I recommend to everyone.
2. Diptyque Feu de Bois is one of the best firewood smokey scents. It’s not everyone’s cup of tea but it always feels like Christmas to me! It smells warm and cozy.
3. Diptyque Vanille is a smokey vanilla. It’s not your typical sweet gourmand vanilla. It’s almost like a leather smokey kind of vanilla that has a warm vibe.
4. Diptyque Ambre is my favorite amber scent. It has the perfect mix of wood, vetiver and patchouli with a hint of spice. It’s another warm one – I bought the large colored glass version a few years ago and found it a lot more potent than the standard size (which is still very good).
5. Diptyque Santal is the best sandalwood candle. It’s not too strong or spicy and is perfect year round.
I bought the Mini Carousel Set and standard size Lucky Charm carousels last year and love them! They usually have them out only during the holiday season. Both are still available right now at Nordstrom.
6. Cire Trudon Ernesto is the best candle of all time to me. It’s a magical mix of leather and tobacco – but I find it hard to describe. I have yet to try all the Cire Trudon candles (I have also tried minis of Positano and Rose Poivree which were lovely!). They’re the most expensive candle splurge I’ve made for the home in past years. Every Christmas they launch special edition packaging for a selection of scents. The Cire Trudon team was generous enough to send this year’s for review and it’s GLORIOUS! I have the Classic size but it also comes in two larger options.
7 / 8 / 9 Cire Trudon Gabriel, Nazareth and Fir have been on my radar for years but every time I’ve decided to buy one I always go back to Ernesto. They have a beautiful Odeurs D’Hiver Christmas Trio which is boxed in the most beautiful packaging I have ever seen. Every candle in the box is carefully packed with inserts around the edges and also in the top to protect the wick/wax. Gabriel is glorious mix of leather, chestnut and wood. Nazareth is a mix of clove, oranges and cinnamon (smells like Christmas!). I’ve always been more of a pine lover for Christmas scents but Cire Trudon Fir is so unique and sweet while still being very green.
10. Byredo Tree House is my favorite one from the line. When I first smelled it years ago I actually did not like the way it smelled straight out of the jar. It wasn’t until I smelled it burning in their New York store that I decided to give it a try. It has the most amazing mix of cedar, bamboo, sandalwood, guaiac wood, hay, spice, myrrh and labdanum. It’s warm and cozy with wood and spice mix.
11. Byredo Bibliotheque is almost like a smoky candle version of Bal D’Afrique perfume to me. It’s not as sweet but to me it has a similar vibe that is so unique and unlike anything else I’ve tried. Even the little one has amazing throw.
12. Aesop Room Sprays – For those who cannot burn candles room sprays are a great alternative. I’m completely obsessed with all the Aesop Room Sprays and was thrilled to find they launched a mini trio this holiday! I’ve also loved Diptyque Baies and 34 Boulevard St. Germain sprays as well for our home. I’ve been dying to try one from Byredo but haven’t yet.
How I recycle and clean out wax to recycle/repurpose candles in this post here. What are your favorite home scents for the holiday season?
Cire Trudon candles gifted. All others purchased by me.
I receive cleaning questions quite frequently even though truth be told I’m a messy person. The struggle to keep things organized is very real and it requires a lot of constant re-organizing to prevent things from just staying in piles on the desk or floor. I thought I’d cover some frequently asked questions for beauty cleaning tips. I’m asked almost daily about Diptyque candle jars, brush cleaning and clear bags I thought I’d cover those in a roundup today.
How to Clean Out Diptyque Jars Without Ruining the Sticker Label
There are many ways to clean out the excess wax from candle jars but with luxury candles like Diptyque, Byredo or Jo Malone you need to take a little extra care to keep the labels in tact. I’ve found the clear glass jars from Diptyque have the most sturdy labels so if you get them wet it will still stay in tact. If you have a Byredo or Jo Malone candle or anything with a label that has a paper surface or doesn’t have that coating make sure you don’t get the exterior wet. What I do is quite simple! All you need is Dawn Dish Soap (although any dish soap will probably work), a small butter knife and paper towels or a small sponge.
If there are large chunks of wax in the bottom around the end of the wick you can scrape it out with a small rounded butter knife. I bought a set of four from Amazon and they work perfectly to get excess wax off the base and sides. Having a beveled tip makes it easier to hold and maneuver than a flat knife. If the wax is too hard you can soften it by adding hot tap water and let it sit for a few minutes.
To clean out the sides and excess wax pour a small amount of dish soap into the jar and add hot tap water to soften the rest. Let it soak for a few minutes for it to soften then wipe out with a paper towel or re-scrape the sides (depending on how much wax there is). If all the wax doesn’t come off just repeat until it all comes clean. Sometimes stubborn remnants won’t come off the first round.
For candles that had a clean burn:
If you didn’t have a clean burn you might have to repeat the steps a few more times, this one didn’t have quite a clean burn:
Others have suggested freezing the wax out. You can definitely try it but freezing will only pop out the wax if you have a large chunk at the base. It won’t clean out the excess stuck on the sides and if you have any burned remnants it won’t come clean with freezing. Some like to add boiling water but I’ve had the sticker labels melt off the sides from burning candles too long so I avoid using water that is extra hot.
How to Clean the Plastic on Clear Makeup Bags
If you have any clear makeup bags you know they are finger print prone and it’s just a matter of time before you will see smudges from brushes or just dirty fingers in general. My favorite cleaner I’ve used is the Novus Plastic Clean and Shine spray to clean makeup bags and acrylic makeup boxes and drawers. It works on Truffle Pouches and The Daily Edited Clear Bags as well. You can use a soft cloth to wipe it off but I find paper towels work just fine. They have a few other products that helps remove fine scratches from plastics but I haven’t tried it. It’s relatively easy to find at a lot of places like Amazon or the Container Store. Even though the bottle says ok to use on plastic I won’t recommend using them on sunglasses – I’ve found the best way to clean those is just warm water and soap, that way you don’t ruin any protective coatings! If in doubt on what you can use this on, I recommend a small patch test. But on plastic makeup organizers and all my clear bags it’s worked like a charm.
Favorite Brush Cleansers
My favorite brush cleanser is actually the MAC Brush Cleanser because it doesn’t leave a film and isn’t scented but it’s really pricey! With the rate I clean brushes repurchasing it constantly isn’t really cost effective. I’ve tried so many things over the years like baby shampoo, body wash, other brands of brush cleansers etc. trying to find a dupe but haven’t. Many recommended Dr. Bronner’s – I tried the Unscented and Lavender options and while they do clean brushes nicely, the residue gave my skin an allergic reaction (I did rinse them out well, but there were still remnants on the brushes and the scented oil versions didn’t mesh well with my skin). I still think they’re good for other things, just not on my face but your mileage may vary. Same goes for a lot of other popular liquid brush cleansers, so many are heavily scented my skin can’t tolerate any residue. Baby shampoo never washes/rinses out 100% for me but I wish it did.
For me the best is a mix of hot water and Dawn Dish Soap (original one). I let brushes soak a little to loosen the makeup from the brushes.
You can use your hands to massage the cleanser into the brush but I’ve found rubbing them across a brush cleaner mat is much more effective and easier on your hands. I had a Sigma Express Cleaning Mat before and really liked it but eventually tossed it during our last move. It’s one you put in the bottom of your skin and run the brushes across it and it’s really effective! When it came time to replace it I opted for a smaller version when I spotted the Real Techniques Brush Cleaning Palette in store (shown below) and love the smaller size and handle on the back so you can hold it. Both work equally well, I’d recommend you pick based on your preference for format and size. I like things that are more compact but this one might be too small for your needs.
One side note is I also get asked how we keep our house so clean with all of our fur babies. My secret is that Andrew is the clean one and vacuums constantly. We’ve had several Dyson vacuum cleaners over the years and just replaced ours with the Dyson V8 Animal Cordless Vacuum Cleaner and it’s AMAZING and totally worth the splurge. It gets all the pet fur off the couches and carpet. There are two strength settings so it’s good on wood/tile floors and also rugs/carpet.
I hope you found this roundup helpful! I wanted to do a roundup I could send to those who ask because so many ask on a weekly basis. I will be doing a separate beauty organization post in the upcoming weeks so stay tuned!
Do you have any brush cleaner or plastic cleaner favorites? Let me know if you do!
Every year I look forward to the Diptyque Roses Collection they launch for Valentine’s Day. This year they launched two new limited-edition candles called Centifolia and Damascena, available in a few different forms:
Individually in the full size ($72 each for 6.7 oz)
Individually in the small sizes ($36 each for 2.46 oz)
Also in a Small Candle Duo Set ($72)
The jars are frosted tinted glass with the prettiest rose patterns on the exterior. Nothing would have stopped me from buying these and I bought these sight unseen just for the packaging.
As much as I love Diptyque I don’t consider myself a pure rose fragrance lover. I do really like the rose notes when it’s blended with other notes like it is in their Baies candle. Same goes for many perfumes that I love and wear. For me rose is best when it’s blended with something other than floral notes. If you love all things floral and true pure rose then these will be perfect for you. Alone I found these very strong, floral and powdery. I do think they are beautiful but they’re not my favorite. The Mini Duo Set seems to be sold out most places but this morning I still saw it in stock at Barney’s New York. You can still buy the mini sizes individually.
Centifolia is the softer variation and out of the two, I like this scent the most. It has the tiniest bit of spice to it and I found it really interesting to read more about the flower itself, per Diptyque, the flower is from the “Grasse region of France since the 16th century, the Centifolia rose is also called the May rose for the month in which it is harvested. It comes by its Latin name (centum=one hundred + folio=leaf) because of its profusion of petals, said to number one hundred.”
Damascena has a beautiful color combination of the bright pink and orange. This one is very potent, floral, powdery and sweet. I found it a little too overwhelming for my taste. If you love pure rose scents you will absolutely adore this!
I have no regrets purchasing both. I will burn them to the end but will most likely combine with another scent like Baies or something woodsy like Byredo Tree House. Compared to previous limited-edition rose candles Diptyque has launched I find these two to be more of a pure powdery floral rose while previous years seem to be a little bit sweeter and softer.
The jars will be used to recycle for me as well. A quick note on the frosted glass jars if you’re new to recycling them – I’ve owned a few others in the white frosted glass and the finish can be a little delicate. I’d definitely recommend you take care with the exterior when cleaning as they can wear off or scratch off if you use a stiff sponge. It’s not so delicate that you have to baby it, but if you want to recycle, after your first burn, make sure you trim your wicks with a Wick Trimmer before you burn to avoid burning the sides or tops.
To clean them and recycle after they’re done burning I take a small butter knife and remove the metal circle that’s at the base if it hasn’t popped out already. To clean the sides I soak hot water and dish soap and wipe out with a paper towel. I repeat until wax is completely gone. Don’t use boiling water as it can crack the glass. Hot water from the tap works just fine to soften any residue and the soap helps clean the sides. Anytime I recommend this method someone without fail tells me freezing them is the better method but it has never worked for me.
Bottom line beautiful and romantic! I just think some scents are best when layered or blended with other notes, with these I prefer them when burned with something else. I still think they’re gorgeous, they’re just not my absolute favorites.
For Black Friday Diptyque launched a special limited-edition Black Candle in their classic Baies variation ($72 for 6.5 oz). It’s available online through 11/26 while supplies last and comes in a special black and white glass jar. I was so lucky to get an early preview to share in my Black Friday roundup and wanted to give you a closer look.
Baies is Diptyque’s best-selling candle with a mix of rose and blackcurrant leaves. It’s my favorite and I think it’s one of the most unique scents I’ve ever burned in candle form. The Black Friday Baies comes in the same size as the Standard Candles, 6.5 oz, approximately up to 60 hours of burn time. The wax is black like their Tinted Colored Glass Candles and 3-Wick Candle. It also comes with a 2018 stamp on the side which I think is super fun.
In case you’re new to the brand many of the scented candles come in multiple sizes and also other formats in case you cannot burn candles. I’ve purchased almost all the different forms over the years, my favorite is still the candle form.
Above from left to right. You can find these at a number of places, but I usually buy mine from Diptyque stores, Diptyque online and Nordstrom:
Three Wick Candle, 21 oz ($165) only comes in the Baies form right now, there’s actually a larger size Outdoor with Five Wicks that have 51.3 oz, the jar is a matte glass black and is a lot stronger than the standard or minis
Room Spray, 5 fl oz ($68) is a potent kind of room spray, it’s very strong and scent lingers for at least several hours and fills a decent size room with a few spritzes, it still won’t last quite as long as a candle but we’ve bought a few of these over the years and every scent we’ve tried is amazing
Tinted Glass, 10.2 oz ($95) comes with approximately 90 hours of burn time, their best sellers come in different colors of glass and matching wax which make it more fun and unique
Standard Candles 6.5 oz ($65 and up) come with approximately 60 hours of burn time, most are clear glass with the white and black sticker label. Limited or special editions have different colors of exterior and are usually a little more expensive.
Mini Candles 2.4 oz ($35) have around 30 hours of burn time. They make nice gifts. After I burn and clean out the interior I fill them with Q-tips or long match sticks.
Scented Oval ($48) is the only format I’m really not that crazy about since the strength isn’t as potent as the room spray or candle.
The perfume version of Baies os the L’Ombre Dans L’Eau which has really good lasting power on me. It smells exactly like the candle. I’ve tried the Eau de Toilette version but they also have an Eau de Parfum as well. One shown is a travel size which was limited-edition. Current sizes are larger.
In addition they have a few diffuser variations which I have not tried yet. There are currently three different options for home diffusers and each one is very expensive. They’re beautifully designed but for now I’m sticking with the candles.
Some of you asked for more thoughts and a closer look at the Carousel. Each holiday there are usually two options. This year they have the Full Size Carousel ($60) which fits the standard candles. It sold out multiple times on the Diptyque website but just restocked so I ordered it on Black Friday. In addition they have the one that fits the minis available in a Baies + Tubereuse Carousel and Candle Set ($125). In my previous post I had photographed it without the ornaments attached. Below I have it with the ornaments attached and I also uploaded a quick video on my Instagram @beautylookbook. You can check it out in action in this post here.
Overall I think the Black Friday Candle is perfect for Diptyque lovers. I ordered a second one as a backup along with the full size carousel on Black Friday. Diptyque is an expensive luxury brand for sure and if you’re new to the line it can be a little overwhelming to pick one. I still recommend the mini sets if you can’t smell or try in person. They’re the perfect way to sample a wide range.
For the size options I hope the side by side photo helped. I’ve purchased a number of these over the years. The Three Wick was a newer launch last year and Andrew bought it for me as a birthday gift (by my request).
You can find the Diptyque Black Friday 2018 Baies online at Diptyque through 11/26 while supplies last. They are running a Cyber Weekend promo with a 35g mini Figuier candle, a mini Philosykos soap and a set of decorative ornaments with a purchase $100 or more using code CHEER until 11/27 or while supplies last. If you’re shopping be sure to check the Exclusive Offers Promo page in case they have a new one for Cyber Monday.
Black Friday candle gifted by Diptyque. All other items purchased by me.
I’m thrilled to share that the Diptyque City Candles will be available online at Diptyqueparis.com and in Diptyque boutiques for a limited time starting today 9/27 through Sunday 9/30. There are currently 9 city candles that have been created for Beverly Hills, London, Miami, Tokyo, New York City, Shanghai, Berlin, Paris and Hong Kong. Each candle comes in a beautifully designed jar. Since they are only available to the stores in each corresponding city they’re harder to find and track down, but Diptyque is launching them all online for a limited time. Two new launches this round for online include Hong Kong and Paris. There is also a new Boxed Set of Six City Candles that comes packaged together in a white box.
While these are typically only available in city boutiques (similar to the Le Labo city perfumes), there have been a few times where Diptyque has launched the collection online so I was able to buy the ones I didn’t own from boutique trips, but they sell out very fast! Earlier this year I found a wonderful Paris shopper who travels from the US to Paris frequently for work to purchase a couple of the Paris ones for me. Every single one is amazing and beautiful. The boxes these come in are just as beautiful if not prettier than the actual candle jars themselves.
I have a review for each one today except Berlin. I have the older version which is packaged in a clear glass jar and based on the description I think the tinted design jar is same as the clear one but I haven’t smelled it to confirm.
Quick note for the US city candles and if you’re based in the US. While the candles are only available at each city boutique (Beverly Hills, Miami, NYC) – you can call the store to order and they will ship to you! Every store I’ve ordered from and called is very friendly, patient and helpful.
Beverly Hills was the first city candle I discovered. I reviewed it several years ago when we were still living in San Diego. I am a little embarrassed to admit how many I stocked up on but this was my go-to for a long time. It has lemon, mint, orchid and freesia. It smells like a fresh citrus and the mint is a sweet mint but it’s really subtle.
The description, “With its palm trees and lush gardens, the Beverly Hills candle embodies the aroma of an iconic city. A unique citrus scent blending mint and lemon with a hint of Freesia, the candle exudes a bright and zesty scent. The candle’s colorful design has a psychedelic touch that is native to the west coast and pays homage to the famous Martinique wallpaper, the iconic pattern used in the Beverly Hills Hotel.”
Miami is another one I bought online the first time city candles were offered. I also bought a couple in person at the Diptyque store at Bal Harbour. This is another floral citrus with magnolia, lemon, lime, vanilla. To me it’s similar to Beverly Hills, but Miami is creamier and a little more green while Beverly Hills smells sweeter and more vibrant.
The description, “The scent of the Miami candle offers an exotic aroma of delicate magnolia blossoms enhanced by delicious citrus notes. Reminiscent of the tangy lemon and lime native to the city, the candle suggests hints of vanilla and an homage to its signature tropical atmosphere. Its design pays homage to the city’s iconic Art Deco architecture, lively atmosphere and unique culture.”
New York is inspired by New York City nights. I don’t know that I can attribute a smell to the city, but this candle has a warm patchouli, cedar and vetiver. It smells like fall in a warm cozy leather chair to me. It has a strong masculine vibe with the cedar. The candle doesn’t smell like New York to me but regardless I think it’s a beautiful one.
Description, “New York City candle evokes the spirit of speakeasies and the atmosphere of New York City by night… Like an echo: cedar, vetiver, and patchouli together are heightened by incense, reviving the scent of New York City at its golden age.”
London candle has beautiful floral notes like a garden. The lilac and juniper are what I smell and it has a very soft airy feel to it. I haven’t been to London in over 15 years, I have fond memories and am dying to go back to visit. When I was in college I did a summer study abroad trip to Oxford and went to London frequently. This was a life-changing experience for me not only to see England for the first time, but also because I met a boy who I married nearly 10 years later. I also roomed with a girl who became my long-time bestie even to this day we still keep in touch.
Description, “The scent of the London candle takes you to the heart of the Columbia Road flower market. Its unique notes of heliotrope, lilac, juniper and hyacinth are warmed with a touch of spice. With its floral detailing, the vessel celebrates a traditional bright and refined English wallpaper—paying homage to the pattern of the historic Westbourne Grove diptyque boutique.”
The Paris candle is something I can’t quite describe. It’s described has having chypre accord with aromatic twist of lavender. It smells fresh, light, floral, deep all at the same time. It feels like a little bit of citrus, lavender and cedar all mixed in one. This is in my top picks because of the name Paris. It’s a dream of mine to live there (always dreaming of the croissants and beautiful gardens!).
Description, “The newest addition to the City Candle Collection, the long-awaited Paris candle. Dressed in an ornate vessel that reveals the capital as seen from the sky, the pattern pays homage to the iconic city of light. The scent is marked by a chypre accord that permeates the enigmatic Parisian chic atmosphere.”
Hong Kong, Tokyo and Shanghai
Hong Kong is one of the newest online launches. I haven’t had a chance to burn this one as this is my first time seeing it in person. I love the bold red reflective jar with the design inspired by the high rise buildings in the city. The scent has floral notes that are built around the Bauhinia Blakeana one of their orchid trees. There are also also supposed to be notes of steam rice which usually doesn’t have a scent to me. It’s a creamy floral with a musk feel to me.
Description, “The Hong Kong vessel presents a setting inspired by the citys colorful, graphic, urban density. Ever present is the persistence of nature as it attempts to reassert its power throughout the city. The olfactory tribute to this city is expressed through a floral accord, built around the famous Bauhinia Blakeana, Hong-Kong’s emblem, complemented by comforting steam of rice. Come, discover the newest addition to the city candle collection online or at our Hong Kong boutique.”
Tokyo is one of my favorites because it has a fresh light scent of pine and cedar but doesn’t feel as green as those notes typically are. There’s a hint of hinoki and incense in it with subtle floral feels. This was one I was really excited to be able to buy online.
Description, “The aroma of the Tokyo candle takes you on a stroll amongst the majestic Japanese cypress trees. Notes of pine oil and cedar leaves celebrate majestic branches shading a hidden temple path and diffuses notes of soothing incense. Inspired by the art of the Japanese garden, its design evokes the harmony and serenity of two of Tokyo’s most famous parks, Yoyogi Koen and Shinjuku Gyoen.”
Shanghai smells like a sweet flower mixed with green tea. It almost smells sweet like a dessert I’d want to eat.
Description, “The scent of the Shanghai candle is closely linked to a Chinese tradition. Deliciously perfumed osmanthus flowers complemented with notes of green tea and maté to reveal the aroma of a freshly brewed cup of tea. The candle’s design is an ode to the beauty of Huxinting, Shanghai’s oldest tea house. The vessel’s deep red shade, blue porcelain and gold are an ancient symbol of good luck.”
City Candles Box Set 2018 Edition
The amazing 6-piece box set with Beverly Hills, London, Paris, New York, Tokyo and Shanghai. It retails at $432 and while you don’t get a price break compared to buying individually but I can’t think of a more amazing gift that this would make having them in a beautiful white box.
The only one I’m missing is Berlin but as mentioned at the top of the post I have the original glass jar version and while I’m almost 100% sure the colored green and yellow jar they have right now is the same, I haven’t smelled it to confirm.
Going through all the descriptions again has me itching to travel overseas. I have such good memories of travels to Europe and I have only been to one country in Asia before but have so much on my travel wishlist. I love these city-inspired candles and as a Diptyque lover it’s fun to have something a little rarer and harder to find.
The Diptyque City Candles retail for $72 each and the Boxed Set of Six retails at $432. Available online at Diptyqueparis.com for a limited time through 9/30, in limited quantities. Also available in the free-standing Diptyque boutiques.
Have you tried any of these before or visited any of the Diptyque stores in these cities? If I’m traveling to a place with a Diptyque boutique it’s always a MUST that I stop inside one. They’re beautifully designed and the staff is always so knowledgeable and friendly.
Huge thanks to Diptyque for sending me all the candles for this feature. Being the Diptyque fan that I am I had already purchased all the scents on previous occasions except for Hong Kong. I’m the happiest person on earth to be stocked up on these scents from a brand that I’ve adored for many years.
It feels like we skipped spring this year and went straight to summer here in Florida! Today I have a roundup of spring to summer fragrances that are light and fresh. I’ve been thrilled to find that so many of you are die hard fans of Tom Ford Soleil Blanc and Creed Love in White like me. This year both brands have launched new variations of the classics! I know fragrance is so personal so I’d love to hear about your go-to’s. If you’re looking for something new but don’t know where to start I hope this list will give you some ideas of where to start exploring!
Creed Love In White for Summer ($335 for 75 ml) is a new variation of their classic Love In White. The original is a crisp white floral with a powdery feel. The new version at first spritz smells almost identical but if you let it sit you’ll notice a softer vibe with a fruity touch. They both have that distinct white floral feel, but the new one is really beautiful! Right now Love in White for Summer is only available in the 75 ml form. I have purchased a few of their Leather Atomizers for travel or my purse. My husband also has a couple for his favorite which is Aventus for Men.
Top Notes: Bulgarian roses, Calabrian bergamot, sweet magnolia
Louis Vuitton Apogee ($240 for 3.4 ml) is one of the soft earthy florals from Louis Vuitton. To me I notice the magnolia and jasmine notes the most. It’s a natural and earthy kind of floral. One thing I learned at the stores is once you buy the full size bottle you can get them refilled in store for a much lower price than repurchasing another full size bottle. These come in beautiful glass jars. If you cannot decide on one they have a lovely Miniatures Set which contains seven 10 ml bottles.
Notes: Lily-of-the-valley accord, Jasmine from Grasse, Magnolia from China, Gaiac wood, Sandalwood essence
Byredo La Tulipe ($165 for 50 ml) is another pretty clean floral. It has extremely strong lasting power – even though my nose gets used to it within a few hours, people who walk by notice it many hours later. To me it smells almost like fresh linen + white flowers combined. I also have this in the Hand Cream and Hair Perfume just for fun. In the event you want smaller options, it is available in the La Selection Florale Trio (12 ml vials). Alternatively on the Byredo Website you can order their Discovery Set (they limit 1 per person) and it comes with a voucher that you can use at Byredo Stores on Byredo.com.
Top Notes: rhubarb, cyclamen, freesia
Base: blonde woods, vetiver
Jo Malone Wood Sage and Sea Salt ($135 for 3.4 oz) is one of the best earthy sea salt scents I’ve tried that is so unique. It’s a great light everyday kind of scent one can wear year round, but it’s not a floral or citrus. It seems like most scents that are light need to be either floral or citrus or beachy. This one is none of the above yet it’s not spicy or heavy. I attribute the hint of bergamot to this fact. It’s one I can wear alone but I received the best tip from one of my favorite Jo Malone associates in San Diego to layer this with Wild Blue Bell. The Wood Sage and Sea Salt notes:
Top: bergamot, ambrette seeds, buchu leaves
Middle: sea salt, mineral accord, dry fruits
Base: driftwood accord, guaiac wood, white musk, sage
Diptyque Eau de Sens ($95 for 1.7 oz, also now available in a Solid Soap, Cleansing Hand and Body Gel and Hair Mist) is my all time favorite orange blossom. It’s not too citrus and it’s not too floral or powdery. It’s the perfect mix to be orange and floral. Lasting power is not as strong as Tom Ford or Creed on me but I don’t mind reapplying after a few hours as it fades nicely. I have the Hair Mist on my wishlist which I hope to pick up soon.
Top Notes: bitter orange, juniper berry.
Middle Notes: orange blossom
Base Notes: angelica, patchouli
Chanel L’Eau No 5 All Over Body Spray ($60 for 150 ml/5 fl oz) is a lighter variation of the L’Eau No. 5 reviewed here. I actually prefer the body spray version because it’s softer and not quite as crisp. It also comes in a Hand Cream option which smells completely different to me but is still lovely.
Notes: Lemon, Mandarin and Orange, Rose, Jasmine, Ylang Ylang, Cedar and Musk
Molton Brown Orange and Bergamot Radiant Body Oil ($49 for 100 ml/3.3 fl oz) is such a beautiful dry oil. As you might guess from this roundup I’m obsessed with anything that has bergamot in it! This one is a fresh one that has a blend of orange, bergamot and mandarin. It’s very bright and refreshing. The oil absorbs nicely into the skin and gives the body a luminous glow. Scent is very strong for a body oil, I can wear this alone instead of the perfume version. You can find this in other body products in their entire Orange and Bergamot collection.
Top Notes: orange, bergamot and mandarin
Heart Notes: neroli, cardamom and galbanum
Base Notes: musk, ylang-ylang and cedarwood
Tom Ford Eau de Soleil Blanc ($122 for 1.7 oz) is new this spring. It’s one of my favorites of the season and I did not think it could get better than the original. It’s really close to the original version but this one is lighter in feel and not quite as rich or deep. It’s more green and a tiny bit more citrus with a brighter feel. I do not think you need both if you are already well stocked on one. I used up my original so decided to buy this one and I’m 100% happy I did.
Notes: Vert de Bergamot, Orange Bitter, Petitgrain Bigarde, Ylang-Ylang, Pistachio Accord, Coco de Mer Accord
Tom Ford Soleil Blanc Oil ($74 for 8.4 fl oz/250 ml) is my favorite scented body oil. I wish it came with a spritzer but it’s so good I can overlook the packaging. It does come in a Dry Oil Spray Version which I personally did not like very much. For some reason the regular Body Oil works much better for my skin and smells better too.
Byredo Mojave Ghost ($165 for 1.7 fl oz) is one of the most unique scents I’ve tried. To me it smells a little fruity and floral with noticeable violet and magnolia notes. There’s a tiny hint of musk and sandalwood with amber to round it out and prevent it from being a full on floral. Lasting power on me is excellent.
Top Notes: ambrette, Jamaican nesberry
Middle Notes: violet, sandalwood, magnolia
Base Notes: chantilly musk, crisp amber, cedarwood
Tom Ford Fleur de Portofino ($230 for 1.7 oz/50 ml, also available in the All Over Body Spray which I’ve tried and loved) is a twist on their classic Neroli Portofino. They have several spinoffs of the classic and to me this one is the best because it mixes in floral making it softer, more feminine and well rounded. It smells like the spring to summer transition with crisp citrus and fresh floral notes.
Tom Ford Soleil Blanc is another classic that I’ve used up in the full size. The one shown is from a limited-edition Travel Atomizer which has just launched at Nordstrom! So many of you have said this scent is THE ONE for you. I think it’s a classic sunshine vacation scent in a bottle!
Notes: Bergamot, Cardamom Oil Orpur, Pistachio Accord, Ylang Ylang Comores Islands, Benzoin Extract Orpur, Coco De Mer Accord
My top 3: Creed Love in White for Summer, Byredo Mojave Ghost and Tom Ford Eau de Soleil Blanc.
I know perfume is one of those beauty products that is best to shop for in person. I’ve ordered a few blind simply because I did not have a counter near me and it has been both hit or miss. After a couple misses I decided to never do it again. These days I’ve found more and more brands have started to sell sample vials or discovery sets on their websites. You may have to do a bit of searching to find them. Many larger retailers offer samples with beauty purchases, I almost always add one to my cart from Nordstrom. Lucky Scent also sells samples and sample packs of fragrances of their entire store. If you are ever in the Los Angeles area I highly recommend you stop by their store. You can read more in a feature I did here. In some cases you might not find any sample section online even on specific brand websites. I’ve also had luck a couple times e-mailing customer service to see if I could buy or order samples and in two instances they did!
That wraps up my spring to summer perfume favorites. I know it’s quite a lot and some of you stick to 1 or 2 scents but I also know women who rotate on a seasonal basis and like to switch things up like me. As always please share your personal favorites in the comments! I love reading about what you love and wear.
Press samples featured include items from Creed, Molton Brown and Louis Vuitton.
Right now I’m obsessed with all kinds of scents that smell like spring. Since moving to Florida I’ve more into scents than I’ve ever been, but there’s something about warm sunny weather that makes me crave something that smells like a tropical vacation. I have a mix of home scents and perfumes I’ve been loving. Some are new launches others have been around for years. I did my spring transition scent post last month and loved hearing about your favorites. Over the years I’ve found a lot of scents I love for spring so this is by no means comprehensive of the best ones out there, but here’s a small selection of what I’ve been loving right now.
For the home I discovered Antica Farmacista last year thanks to the recommendation of Edward Bess. He knew I loved Diptyque and said that Antica Farmacista was a beautiful line with gorgeous diffusers and candles. I fell in love at first sniff and even though I had seen the line for years at Nordstrom I never really paid much attention. I stocked up on a lot of diffusers during the Nordstrom anniversary sale and over the holiday bought a lot of sets as gifts. The line is truly exquisite! Since diffusers do last a lot longer than a candle I’m slowly working my way through trying new scents.
The latest from their line is Lush Palm which is a green floral with Tahitian Gardenia, banana leaf and palm. Notes include Herbaceous Green Accord, Crisp Apple, Pear, Aloe, Grapefruit, Bergamot, White Pepper, Pine, Tahitian Gardenia, Sambac Jasmine, Lily of the Valley, Crisp Water Notes, Cedarwood, Mexican Vanilla, Labdanum, and Sweet Amber. It has a lush green floral feel that has an uplifting cooling and relaxing feel. We’ve been using the large diffuser at home and it fills our living room. The candle has pretty good throw. In their catalog they have scent combinations and one of them is the Bergamot and Ocean Aria. I’ve already burned through two of the candles for that one and adore it. They sent the room spray for me to try and as a bergamot lover it’s really lovely. If you’re looking for a nice mother’s day gift they have a Spring Diffuser Trio with minis of Acqua, Lush Palm and Bergamot Ocean Aria – it’s really perfect. Pair it with a nice bouquet of flowers and I think it would look super cute.
For more in the home scent arena, one of my favorite spring time scents (also good for summer) is the Diptyque Tomas Maier Palm Beach (originally reviewed here). It was a limited-edition scent years ago but they keep restocking and you can find it exclusively at Diptyque stores or online at Diptyque. It has jasmine, iris, lemon, lime, salt and grass. It’s got a lovely lush tropical vibe that isn’t overly sweet. I’ve been exploring more in Cire Trudon. One of the cute stores near us is called the Oxford Exchange and they have a mix of things like a cute restaurant, coffee area, tea bar, Aesop Skincare and a shop with Cire Trudon. I spotted a mini duo called the Giambattista Valli and Cire Trudon Duet which has Positano and Rose Poivree ($105). So far I have not spotted the duo anywhere else online except on Cire Trudon’s website and online at Barneys New York. I’m a sucker for minis and even though this was extremely expensive I could not resist the beautiful design and cute box. Positano is a strong bright white floral with gardenia, orange blossom, jasmine, magnolia, tuberose and lily. Rose Poivree is a strong rose with pepper notes. You can also buy the individual full size at places like Net-A-Porter, Barneys New York or Lucky Scent. Cire Trudon candles are quite the splurge but in my experience the throw and intensity surpasses all other brands.
In perfume long-time readers know I like to switch things up. I finally splurged on a full bottle of the Jo Malone Wood Sage and Sea Salt after using up a few minis I had from sets and GWPs. It’s funny because when it first launched I did not like it – but I gave it another chance before I moved and fell in love. I love layering it with the Mimosa and Cardamom and Wild Bluebell both thanks to the rec from one of my favorite Jo Malone reps in San Diego).
Tom Ford Soleil Blanc remains one of my favorites for warm weather but the latest launch Sole Di Positano is just absolutely amazing, especially for bergamot lovers. It an extension of the Neroli Portofino line which gets better with each new launch. This one has Italian bergamot, petitgrain bigrate, lemon and mandarin and shiso leaf. Sole Di Positano is not as citrus or sweet as the Neroli Portofino (one that I find smells great on others but not for me). It’s happiness in a bottle. The All Over Body Sprays have been around for quite some time but I never looked into them. I saw them in person for the first time (I finally discovered a counter near me) and was really surprised by how big the bottles were. They’re aerosol sprays and I decided to try Fleur de Portofino. I have the perfume version which I love for a more floral version of the Neroli Portofino line. I have mixed feelings about the sprays. When I’m indoors the scent lasts a long time on me with good staying power. However if I spray it on me and am outdoors for an extended period of time I find it fades after a few hours. I absolutely love the scent and am going to try layering the spray with the perfume. More thoughts to come soon – but Fleur de Portofino is another spring time favorite.
Last but not least Creed Virgin Island Water is pure love. It’s more of a summer scent but since it feels like summer where I am this is perfect. I don’t know that I’ve fallen in love with a scent as much as I have this one. I’m trying to ease up on use because I bought the smallest one and an worried I’m going to use it up too fast. I know it’s a silly thing to worry about since perfume is meant to be used – the small bottle was just so expensive!
That rounds up my loving right now spring home and perfume roundup. What are you loving right now? Do you have anything you’ve been obsessed with for the home? This time of year I feel like it’s the best time to makeover one’s home whether it’s updating bedding, home accents or new scents. Since we just moved, we are still in the process of furnishing our home. Going from a small loft to a full size house with a backyard and more bedrooms has been so exciting for us, but our furniture is pretty much swallowed up by the space. The last time we moved it took us about 6 months to fully furnish our loft because we started from scratch. This round I suspect it will also take time to fully furnish the home.
Press samples include Tom Ford Sole di Positano, Antica Farmacista Lush Balm and Bergamot Ocean Aria.