Tuesday, June 11, 2013

My life in Perfume

Hi!

A while ago, I read this post over on The Gloss in which Jennifer listed some of the perfumes she'd worn at different times in her life. Having always been a perfume junkie,  I thought it was a deadly idea so I've done my own version, going through ten eleven perfumes that made an impact on me at one point or another.

All perfume bottle images from the epic holy grail perfume site that is fragrantica.com

Secondary School


Ah, good old ex'cla-ma'tion and so...? - much beloved by First Years who wanted to smell like grown-ups and favoured by Aunts who didn't have a clue what to buy you for Christmas. I'm almost 30, and I still have an Aunt who buys me bottles of So...? - not the original one, the sinful one. It's actually not too bad, a bit overpowering and tween-y, but not completely gross. I think every single girl I knew wore one or both of these circa 1995.

First Fancy Perfume



When I was in 4th year, I got a Friday evening/Saturday job in a local Supermarket. One of the first "proper" things I bought (as opposed to imported US teen magazines and Spectacular nail polish) was one of those crap gas hair stylers that used a whole gas cylinder to straighten my hair once, the other was a small 30ml bottle of Ralph Lauren Romance. I bought it on a total whim after smelling a tester in the chemist, and I adored it. It reminds me of Winter 1998 when the car broke down and I had to walk home from the crossroads wearing stupid high boots, a horrible too-big charity shop duffel coat, and a big scarf drenched in this.

Leaving Cert Perfume - AKA Teen Rebel



The least said about the year 2001, the better. I mainly bought Givenchy Oblique Play because my mother absolutely detested the smell, but I grew to adore it. I don't adore the memories it brings back - mainly of buying it in Dublin and drowning myself in it before meeting a pig of an ex (that same evening, the heel snapped right off my brand new sandal, should have taken that as an omen) the evening of the Westlife gig at The Point, but I do still have a fondness for that sickly sweet smell.

Off To College



Davidoff Cool Water is still one of my all-time favourite perfumes and I must pick up another bottle if the original is still available. I first bought this in mid 2001, and by the time I started college that September, I was already on my second bottle. It immediately brings to mind all the things I loved about college - the nights out, the wild weekends, the spur-of-the-moment day trips, the bike rallies, the friends - an amazing time.

The Grown-Up Perfume



The world and its mother wore this for a year or two after it was released - I bought my first bottle around 2002-2003, when I was doing my Microsoft Masters. I hadn't yet met my future husband, I was earning good money in a part-time job, and generally spending like a mad woman - I think I went through three bottles of this stuff, I thought it was the most grown-up, seductive, sexy perfume I'd ever smelled - until it got to the point where every second woman you passed would reek of it. I think I overdosed, I can't stand the smell of it now.

Presents from A Boy




I met my now-husband in 2003, and over the course of 10 Birthdays, 10 Valentines and 10 Christmases, he has given me exactly three perfumes. Oh, how the romance dies quickly.........anyway. The first one he gave me was the DKNY for one of my Birthdays, and I know for a fact his older sister picked it because she wore it. Hence we all smelled the same any time we went out together. The smell of it reminds me of a trip to Stratford-on-Avon. Good times! The next one he bought me was Deep Night by Ghost (possibly for Christmas?), which reminds me of being pregnant with our first son. It's such an odd perfume to describe - it's sweet, but really dark at the same time.  The final one reminds me of another Christmas - he got me Dior Pure Poison as a Christmas gift and gave it to me IN the chemist. Then we went in to Tesco to get a CD (Tommy Fleming, puke) and our then infant son roared the place down and we had to walk out. I still love that Dior scent so much -  I haven't been able to justify the price since (my original bottle was bought in the boom, damn you Celtic Tiger) but I have been known, on occasion, to splash out on a bottle of the Pure Poison Shower Gel. Amazing.

The Wedding Perfume



Over the next few years, I mainly sprayed a couple of cheap Elizabeth Ardens, ye old Lidl Suddenly, the odd Britney/Beyonce offering, and even a TOWIE perfume (judge all you want, it's lovely). I wanted something new for our wedding last year - I know this isn't your typical wedding perfume, but I didn't want the usual Flowerbomb/JPG/Vera Wang/Miss Dior Cherie. I wanted this big chunky gold bottle that made me sing the serpentine part of Welcome to the Jungle over and over and that's what I got.

The Honeymoon Perfume



I'd gotten a sample of Lancôme's La Vie Est Belle before the wedding and fell in love with it immediately, but couldn't justify another bottle of perfume so soon after buying the Cavalli one. We didn't go on a traditional honeymoon abroad - we went off to Galway for a week and had a lovely time - eating, drinking, relaxing. The day before we came home, we went into Galway City and of course I had to hit every bookshop and chemist I could find. When I went into Boots, I found a little set on the Lancôme counter that had 30ml perfume, a mini juicy tube, mini mascara, mini body lotion and mini shower gel all for €48. I snapped it up, swore I wouldn't waste the perfume.........and used it all up before Christmas. GAH! It's definitely on my must-repurchase-immediately list, but until I get some extra cash and/or use up all the remaining perfumes I have, it will have to stay where it is. 

You know that line from Coyote Ugly - "I remember the first time my Mom played me 'Bridge Over Troubled Water'...I remember exactly what she was wearing, exactly how her hair smelled, and exactly how I felt. Every time I hear that song.....I remember exactly what she was wearing, exactly how her hair smelled, and exactly how I felt." - that's what perfume does for me. One whiff of a particular perfume can bring a memory flooding back with such force that it can floor me at times. It's amazing how certain smells will be forever associated with one particular memory - I can almost smell each and every perfume I've posted about, exactly when I got them, and exactly how I felt. 

Did you own any of my most memorable scents? 

30 comments:

  1. this is a brilliant post! And nice to look back and relive some memories. Its got me thinking! Think i might do one of these myself if thats allright?

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    1. Course it's alright, would love to see loads of people doing them to see which ones they wore! Sure I got the idea from that post on The Gloss anyway xx

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  2. When I was in school I was drenched in So, and I thought a high end perfume was The Body Shop Dewberry haha I'm allergic to perfume now :(

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    1. Oh no, that must be such a nuisance - there are some lovely essential oils though, I know one of my friends is very very sensitive to all perfumes and she uses some really nice oils instead. I used to love Dewberry too, used to get the big huge shower gels from Avon!

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  3. Love that you included that quote at the end so true! and its funny how we change tastes and things as we grow up! :) x

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    1. Ha I had that quote going round in my head from the second I started the post and I could not for the life of me remember what film it was from, had to google it! x

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  4. So funny, this post has me thinking about the different perfumes that defined certain periods in my life. I was obsessed with Lancôme's Poeme for years in my late teens to early twenties. Now I'm far more fickle and change regularly although it's usually anything by Marc Jacobs.

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    1. I have absolutely zero perfume loyalty now either, but I think that's because there are so many nice ones out so often!x

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  5. I love this post! I've started a perfume collection post myself but it's not very cohesive, can I also borrow this idea for it?!

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    1. Thank you! Please do, I'd love to see it x

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  6. Haha, I had about a million different versions of So?... My neighbour used to give me the gift sets every year, right up until I was 18! My first 'grown up' perfume was DKNY Delicious (the red apple one) & I remember getting it on a school tour to Germany. For now, my signature is Lancome La Vie Est Belle, a friend picked it up & exclaimed "This is EXACTLY what you smell like during hugs!" Love the post :) & the bottle of your wedding perfume is deadly! x

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    1. La Vie Est Belle is so gorgeous, it's a perfect signature scent! A friend of mine had the green apple DKNY and I was so jealous! I loved when I got a bottle of So from my old Aunt, god love her - my sister used to get Charlie Red! Good times ;) x

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  7. I have one perfume that makes me think of one night in the square in the University. Walking home from there to the bus in winter in the pitch black and not a soul about the place. I loved that feeling :) (Funnily enough it was By night by Chritina Aguilara) x

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    1. Isn't it unreal how you can almost smell it when you think of the memory? Perfume is so powerful! Songs do the same xx

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  8. I love this post! It's amazing how perfumes can trigger so many memories, especially when you associate scents with particular times in your life.

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  9. Love this post, such a great idea. I might give it a go myself! It's amazing how different scents can evoke so many memories xx

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  10. This is a great idea! I should do one on all the daggy aftershaves I've ever worn lol

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    1. Definitely do!! Haha the only one I can think of is CK One, think everyone wore that for a while ;-)

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  11. Love this post. Just thinking of perfume bottles and their scents they bring back memories! <3

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    1. Thank you Nory, it's amazing isn't it? x

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  12. Love this post ;) what a great idea - your so right perfume has such links with memory

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  13. What a lovely post - my life through perfume!!! X

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  14. I love this post! So much nostalgia. Did So..? used to come in a different bottle though? That one doesn't look familiar to me. In my head it was a square bottle? Hugo Boss Deep Red was a pressie from my sister for my 21st... well, she gave me the money and I bought it on my trip to the US! I can't wear perfume much now as it's a trigger for my migraines. I feel like I am missing out :(

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    1. So definitely came in a small little bottle, I couldn't find a proper picture of it, it was like a little cube! That must be such a nuisance, migraines are not fun xx

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  15. I love this post! Nothing like a smell to bring you back in time. I love your choices for your wedding and honeymoon, both fab. My two fav perfumes are Flowerbomb and 212 Sexy, I walk around sniffing myself!

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    1. I love 212 Sexy, haven't smelled it in ages! I always sniff myself too, especially when I've a scarf on, walk around like Michael Jackson smelling away ;-)

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