Maven recommends: A grown up Vanilla fragrance for Spring

Good almost afternoon, Wednesday. It's a beautiful day in the neighborhood. Finally. 50 degrees. We've got a heatwave on our hands. Though the sunshine makes the black snow piles look that much shittier. But I digress because spring is in the air, and I feel it- do you feel it?

And with the arrival of spring upon us, you may (or may not be) thinking about switching up your scent. And if you're a scent-obsessed person like me, I highly recommend viewing "Nose," a fascinating documentary on all things aromachology, and more particularly about the nose in chief over at the House of Dior, who makes two standouts j'adore. I have always been obsessed with the warm and cool and rich European vibe of  Bois d'Argent, and my discovery of the spicy and warm Fève Délicieuse when I was in Scotland reduced me to mush. I loved it so much. Scent is potent for me, and just before this plague hit, I was signed up to take a perfume-making class. I want to do that again soon. In the film, they talked about how fragrance makers are super curious humans and can catalog the canon of human experience through scent. I hope that most creative people would watch this film and get inspired because it's on all of us to do the same. 

But I'm here to chat specifically about a favorite note of mine when it comes to perfume, and that note is Vanilla. I am a big fan of the gourmand category of fragrances, a category that is all about yummy sweetness. I became a vanilla fan back in my early days in New York when the Body Shop was having a real moment (that nude lipliner, though). I wore their vanilla exclusively -it was relatively inexpensive and super duper sweet. I believe I then traded up to Kiehls and their vanilla oil. But cut to now. I've grown up, and so has my nose.  For me, vanilla can feel a bit too young and unsophisticated if it is not done with mastery.  I've searched for years for a more grown-up take on my favorite note and recently found one worth wearing.

If you have not sniffed Aerin's Tangier Vanille, you are missing out. Categorized as an Oriental fragrance (think warm and spicy, another fav of mine),  the top notes are Vanilla, Bergamot, and Rose; the middle note is Amber, and the base notes are Sandalwood and Musk. This is a beautiful and subtle vanilla that will have you wrist-sniffing/inhaling throughout the day. I also love mixing it with something musky like Musc Ravageur by Frederic Malle, something spicy like Scandalwood or Holi Water by Heretic, or even something somewhat floral like Iris Poudre by Frederic Malle., yet again.  Tangier Vanille is so beautiful and would be just gorgeous on warm skin.  

The other best, best, best vanilla comes all the way from the Parisian outpost of Le Labo, Vanille 44. This scent is a bit more woody and so yummy in its non-cloying sweetness it almost hurts (as does the price- yikes). I don't find this fragrance lasts terribly long, and since you can only buy it once a year in the states (unless you go to Paris), it may not be worth the expense.

Check out Tangier Vanille if you're craving something sweet and more sensuous than overtly sexy. It's divine, truly. Cause that's what's up this nose knows kind of Wednesday in the 718. Yours, in sweet sniffs, are made of this. XO

1 response
Hey you! I want some advice … high level as I know you’re capable of and, most importantly, free! (I should pay you a stylist fee—but how about a cocktail instead?) I want your advice on a jean to go to. I wear skinny jeans well, and my best brand to date (for fit, feel, quality of indigo) has been AG. But two things have happened: -skinny jeans are out, or rather, ‘instantly brand” you as an old dame -my Covid ’tire” (butt & belly) has not sprung a flat unfortunately (I’m working on it!) So it’s not like I’ve got a rocking body to work with (I repeat: I’m working on it) but am really interested in finding of-the-moment jeans that aren’t ridiculously too young (i.e. the drew barrymore look you recently posted, or anything that would look best with a crop top. NOT happening, needless to say!) What brands/styles, Dear Maven, would you recommend I try? I will start shopping in 2 weeks… going to whittle myself down a bit first … And the cocktail offer— it’s real.Let’s, please!!! xoxo Christine