Friday, January 15, 2010

A Few Of My Favorite Things!

So, I‘ve been asked time and time again my favorite scents. The smells that I can’t live with out; the ones that I crave. My first experience with being haunted by fragrance was when I was a little girl. My mother had this beautiful grey woolen shawl that she wore almost everyday except when she would go out for a glamorous evening on the town.

After watching the wondrous ritual of her getting ready, I would crawl into her bed and watch the late late shows, usually Alfred Hitchcock or old reruns of the Twilight Zone. Scared silly and desperately clutching the shawl I would breathe in the warm, spicy scent of Yves Saint Laurent's Opium or Paloma Picasso mixed with earthy wool and my mother’s own essence.

This is how I became instantly addicted to perfume. Following my mother’s cue, I immediately fell in to the Classic Orientals much to my family’s dismay… Can you imagine a young girl of eight or nine soaked from head to toe in Opium? A bit much.

So here they are, in no particular ranking…


Mmm.Mmmmmm.Garlic. I mean, how can you not love the smell of Garlic? Something is wrong with you if you don’t love the smell of potently drenched, succulent, dripping with, buttery, yummy, Garlic. There is this restaurant by my office that has a snake of garlic perfume wafting through the air and around the corner. It’s like it some kind of olfactory hook in my nose that just grabs my body.

I often cook heavily with it, and I love the smell of my perfume mixing with the scent. I usually like a really heavy spicy, Oriental with my garlic. This is secretly what I imagine Sophia Loren’s kitchen to smell like. Almost sensory overload.

Freshly Baked Bread:

I remember one summer; I experienced heaven, in of all places, Brooklyn. Nestled amongst the grey warehouses and greasy Hipsters is a huge industrial bakery. On that cool summer night, still under the spell of puppy-love and blushed from wine, I shared a soft kiss. As I inhaled the freshly baked loaves, I sighed, “Hmm…This must be what heaven smells like…” Who knew bread could be so innocently erotic?

Florida Water with Milk& Honey:

Ok. Milk & Honey is just fabulous any way. It even sounds good together and how much more decadent can you get than a Milk & Honey bath?

I don’t mean a bath gel with powdered milk and dehydrated honey in the ingredients. I mean a quart of heavy whipping cream and a fat half cup of honey drizzled into a steaming hot bath. Then I add some sprinkles of Florida water ,which is traditionally reserved for Caribbean rituals, and sink deep into the silky warmth. It’s dizzyingly intoxicating.

Comet brand cleaner:
I know this is weird, but I love the smell of Comet brand cleaner, and it is this particular scent not some off brand scent. Here’s kudos to the industrial fragrance perfumer who created this scent, because this has been a staple in my life for many years solely based on the scent.

I have found myself on my hands and knees diligently scrubbing away in the tiles of my bathroom just to be able to breathe in that compulsively clean and sparkling scent!

So this is a short and sweet list of a few favorite scents that are seared into my olfactory memory, however new contenders find me everyday especially in the streets of New York!




  1. Wow, I love this post.

    Olfactory memory is a huge part of my sensory life. You wrote about your memories in a very personal, engaging way. Beautiful job!

    My mother always wore Royal Secret by Germaine Monteil. I especially remember, like you, watching her get ready to go out for a Saturday evening event, and as she put on her black wool coat with the white fur collar, the scent wafted over to me as I sat in my pjs in front of the TV watching Mission Impossible. I went to bed knowing my parents were out having fun, and thinking about being a woman someday with a special perfume of my own.

    When she passed away, I found 2 unopened packages of the perfume, and still have them, unopened. I sprayed the room her wake was in with the cologne so the people could smell it when they came in, and many of them recognized it and commented about it being her signature.

    It's sort of a powdery, flowery, liquory smell.
    Not my cup of tea.

    Personally, I'm a big fan of your Mimosa pour Moi and Premier Figuier, on their own, or mixed with each other.

    January 15, 2010 11:57 AM

  2. Today I am trying to decide whether I will buy Timbuktu or Dzongkha. It's one or the other. Any thoughts are appreciated.

  3. Hi KS-
    Thank you for sharing your memories too!
    I often would dream about the day I would be able to have my own glamourous signature scent-Now I have so many! How lucky am I?
    p.s. A very lovely, Academy-Award winning, ex-BondGirl wears your favorite mixed together!

  4. Hello PFaustin,
    It all depends on what kind of feeling you are going for with your perfume.
    When I wear Timbuktu, I feel invigorated and bright. I find this to be a clear, and softly smoked wood. My mind feels very alert and creative.
    Dzonghka gives me a much more grounded and meditative aura. A reflective mindset. It's warm and calming wood wraps around me and makes me feel softly embraced, comforted.
    So, PF, it really depends on what you want to feel like when you are wearing these perfumes...Given the fact that I assume you have already tried both of these on and they agree with your skin...Yes?