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April showers bring May flowers! My mini-review of randomly chosen floral scents in my sample collection…

Blue Lotus by Alkemia Perfumes:  Blue lotus opens with a cool and refreshing aquatic floral which quickly blooms on my skin into a dusty musk with a hint of vanilla over an underlying mustiness characteristic of the smell of old tomes. I love this blend.  It is soft and delicate.  This is a scent I would dab on during the day or at the office.  Blue Lotus sticks close to the skin and longevity is average. A must-have on my list! Notes: Egyptian blue water musk, blue lotus flowers, antique papyrus, pale white Nile flowers, sweet flag root, and white sandalwood.  Nose: Sharra

Honey Blossom by Aftelier Perfume: It’s a miracle! A natural perfume that doesn’t make me cringe once I spray it on.  This one actually makes me smile.  Honey Blossom reminds me of the warm weather we have been enjoying here in San Francisco.  Honey Blossom is the scent of the last Spring day before summer.  It opens with rich honey and opulent florals of linden, orange blossoms and honeysuckles. The smell of the newborn spring fades into sweltering heat of summer, the ambergris lends an animalic note while benzoin grounds the composition with a warm sensuality. The sillage is intimate, Honey Blossom is a come hither perfume. I love this one and couldn’t stop smelling my wrists. My skin drinks this one up in a couple of hours. If the longevity wasn’t so poor, I’d buy a full bottle.Notes: mimosa, linden blossom, orange blossom absolute, phenyl ethyl alcohol, ambergris, benzoin. Nose: Mandy Aftel.

Nine Dragons by L’Aromatica: To me, Nine Dragons smells like fresh, laundered linens billowing on a clothesline wafting the scent of distant wildflowers on rolling green hills.  This is a crisp, clean, and transparent green floral.  I can pick up every note except the incense and woods.  Nine Dragons is very nice and pretty but I am not compelled to run out and buy it. It reminds me of any safe mainstream department store floral. Low sillage and poor longevity. Notes: green tea leaves, incense, wild pink lotus, soft woods, light musk. Nose: Loreto Remsing

Champaca Absolute by Tom Ford: Wow! This is one bullhorn of a floral. Champaca Absolute is loud, proud and waves its freak flag high in the sky. It starts off as a heady, inebriated floral. I have never smelled champaca but if it is anything like Tom Ford’s interpretation, it would be like sweet night blooming jasmine and gardenias steeped in cognac. After a few hours, honey covered chestnuts slowly emerge smelling so delicious I want to ravage myself! This perfume has sex written all over it and is not for the faint of heart. This is a heavy floral and I can see myself wearing this on date night. My husband can’t keep his paws off me. Full bottle for me please! Above excellent sillage and excellent longevity. Notes: Top notes are cognac, bergamot and dyer’s greenweed; middle notes are champaca, orchid, violet and jasmine; base notes are vanilla, amber, sandalwood and marron glace. Nose: Tom Ford

No. 3 Snowdrop and Crystal Flowers by Trish McEvoy: Snowdrop and Crystal Flowers is a cool, clean, crisp and refreshing white floral. It is neither soapy nor powdery. As the name suggests, the scent evokes an icy image as you would think snowdrops and crystal flowers should smell. This fragrance conjures the image of the last winter frost melting away to make room for Spring and the young buds of white flowers sprouting through icy cracks. Snowdrop and Crystal Flowers is understated and elegant. It is a great starting point for novice noses who want to explore floral scents. It is not heady or cloying, it is civilized, pleasantly soft, and feminine. This would be great to wear in office or during the day throughout Spring into the baking heat if summer. I think this one is beautiful. This is definitely going in my permanent collection. Excellent sillage and tenacious longevity. Notes: Snowdrop flowers, lychee water, sparkling berry, clementine blossoms, Sheer freesia, pink peony, jasmine mist, Sensual musk, teakwood, whipped vanilla. Nose: Trish McEvoy

Lilacs and Heliotrope by Soivohle: If I had to pick a scent that epitomizes Spring, this would be it! I can see myself sitting in a lush country garden full of heliotrope and lilacs with butterflies flittering about, bees buzzing, and hummingbirds humming. It starts off with powdery lilacs. The green notes keep the lilacs from becoming too powdery or cloying. The opening is a nice, soft and slightly sweet floral. As it dries down, the heliotrope and benzoin takes over emitting a delicious creamy vanilla-ice-cream-cherry-almond hazy daydream. Gorgeous and indulgent. I wouldn’t complain if someone gave this as a gift. Average sillage and not the greatest longevity. Notes: White lilacs, purple lilacs, orchid, rose, heliotrope, moss, soft musk, benzoin. Nose: Liz Zorn

Acknowledgment: Photo by Ori Gersht