Sunday, September 10, 2006

Laudering With Intent

I recently spent some quality fragrance time at the Estee Lauder counter, and what a lovely time it was. I've always enjoyed Lauder, if not to wear at least to sniff. Old school big scents, I can happily sample knowing I will spared some of the tedious current obsessions in modern fragrances. No billowing fumes of tonka bean, breathing their fetid marshmallow warmth all over me, what a relief! Last outing I sampled 4 new fragrance offerings as proffered by the perfumeconnection gals, each one heaving "tonka tonka tonka" in my face. A bad experience, I was happy to return to the refined 70's notions of Lauder.

Some of the Lauder line is like a really groovy retro wallpaper, you adore it though it is too loud to consider plastering on your living room walls. But.. you appreciate it. You are glad it is there. You want to keep it around and you know it would be a design tragedy were it to disappear under a sea of mushroom and pastels. My recent samplings were of Pleasures and the newly released Pure White Linen.

Pleasures was probably the only Lauder I hadn't tried (other than Aliage which does not exist in this country). The name itself stayed my hand, though Pleasures Exotic had been card sprayed for me by a promo person when it first came out. When an enthusiast on a forum recently described it as "crisp" I was mortified; a little nomenclature snobbery had kept me from "crisp"! How very awful! Within moments of trying it I fell in love with the top notes. They were something I had been always looking for. A crisp green cut floral, evocotive of aldehydes but not heavy with them. Beautiful, a truly perfect moment. Unfortunately the drydown was more than disappointing, the crispness melting into a fussy hotel soap. This did not soften with time but retained a nostril burning harshness which was very sad. I could see I would be hitting the bottle for that top note high with alarming regularity. I did sample Pleasures Intense hoping for a greener experience but found it was an intense version of the drydown right from the start.

Pure White Linen was another matter entirely. Pure White Linen is beautitful through every stage, and will have it's own blog entry in the near future. Meanwhile I would like to thank Estee for yet another pleasant and refined sniffing experience. Her fragrances always give me a lot to think about.

Picture is one sample of Australian designer Florence Broadhurst's beautiful wallpaper.


ladyjicky said...

I feel that same way about pleasures! Love it when first sprayed. Then it goes to Yuk! Its hard to wash off too.
I must admitt to not being a fan of Lauder. I did try a bottle of Youth Dew a number of years ago and the new edition is not alot better - double yuk.
Anyway, its great to see you back Teacake!

teacake said...

Thank you Lady Jicky! Yes I was quite sad about the Pleasures :( I agree with you about the Youth Dew as well, though I would like to try them together (the new and the old). I think I actually preferred the old.

My favorite Lauder is Azuree, the original one. I have yet to see the revamped item in Aus. Next time you go a'sniffing you should try Pure White Linen, it's light but beautifully natural.

ladyjicky said...

OK, if those Lauder women can leave me alone I shall try Pure white linen and I will sniff Azuree. I don't know this one. Is it a oldie?
Have you noticed how they "jump" on you in Myers? I had this pushy Arden women flogging a $2oo a bottle moisturizer trap me on Saturday and I tell you what Teacake , it was difficult to get rid of her. "I will walk you over to our counter where you can try this and read this etc, etc" So creepy. I will spend that sort of money on fragrance (not Ardens!) but never moisturizer! Like it will get rid of wrinkles! Please. LOL

teacake said...

lj, Azuree is probably only available in the city, if at all. It is very strong, lol, but dries down beautifully. It reminds me of Miss Balmain--they both feature thujold/wormwood. Miss Balmain is a lot lighter however. Have you tried Miss Balmain? I have sampled the Balmains through aquireing them unsiffed in swaps, as only the Dragon of P&P carries them, as far as I know.

Yes Myer is pushy at times, the worst thing you can do is engage them in a topic like moisteurizer! They are far more trained in all the makeup etc.. than in the fragrances. My favorite moisteurizer is Nivea Visage, very inexpensive. The 80.00 ones do feel very nice, but it is a temporary illusion and, IMHO, has nothing to do with the long term effect on the skin. Really there are no magic creams, just ones that suit and ones that don't. The trick is to apply it regularly I think! But the way the Myer staff are trained to talk about them--well it's snake oil salesmen all over again.

ladyjicky said...

Oh yes you are right. I buy that old yellow lotion by clinique as I have sensitive skin and it goes all over - eyes and all. Poof to the eye cream and neck cream and all that rot! I do use Olay with the spf 15 as that is OK on my skin when i go outside to garden etc.
I do think the SA in the cosmetics are getting tougher though.

ladyjicky said...

Went to Myer Doncaster and no Azuree. I will keep my eyes out next time in city!