Saturday, December 29, 2007

Best of 2007

Well here we are again at the close of another year! As tradition has it, we fragrance/fashion/make-up bloggers compile our "Best of" lists for the year. So in keeping with tradition, here are mine. You will see ambers had a big influence this year, in fact all my picks have amber except one! Many of you know, my favorite amber, Anne Pliska is my Holy Grail Fragrance, the one that I love above all. But I also fell for a few new fragrances this past year. These are my favorites, the ones that really stand out above the rest. Here are my Top Ten for 2007, not in any particular order.

Virtuessence of Esther - Virtue & Valor Inc.
Proving even more beautiful in person, is the gorgeous bottle of the Virtuessense of Esther. If you think you have seen some beautiful falcons before, just wait till you see this beauty in person. Talk about a gift of elegance, a present to be remembered, a gift to be treasured. This fragrance was a Christmas gift to myself this year, and as I opened the package I was stunned. What an unforgettable present this would be! A Bridal Gift, or Mother's day, Graduation, Valentine's Day, a special Birthday, or anytime that something a little more special is called for. I can't imagine any woman not being thrilled to receive this gift. The bottle itself is a beautiful display item, display case worthy.

The fragrance is just lovely; delicate, feminine and soft. In my opinion this is infinitely wearable by most, I doubt there would be few, if any, to find this objectionable in any way.

I am very impressed with the fragrance, packaging, website presentation, customer service and entire concept of this fragrance. I think you will be too.

Top: Lily, Orange, Ylang
Mid: Cinnamon, Ginger, Jasmine, Clove
Base: Vanilla, Amber, Musk, Patchouli, Frankincense, Sandalwood

You can find my review by clicking here: Review - Virtuessence of Esther
You can buy Virtuessence of Esther at their website: Virtue & Valor Inc.

Rousse - Serge Lutens
A great fall/winter fragrance this one is bold, foody and gourmand. Lots of clove, simmering pots of potpourri, orange studded clove pomanders, and cinnamon. Dry cinnamon sticks stirred into hot cider. Foody and rich gourmand spicy, mouthwatering! Drying down to such a lovely amber base. So warm and delicious, perfect to take the chill off, a new winter favorite.

Top: Floral Notes, Aromatic Notes, Fruit
Mid: Cinnamon-Wood Note, Spices
Base: Amber, Musks, Vanilla

You can read my review here: Review - Rousse
You can buy Rousse here: Lucky Scent - Rousse

Ginger Musk - Montale
Very surprising and arriving late in the season was Montale's Ginger Musk. Not even knowing the perfumerie till after several wearings. It was one of several generous sized decants given to me by a friend and simply labeled "Ginger Musk". Sounding rather generic, I wasn't sure if this was BBW or a some Paris exclusive, but it sounded interesting. Interesting soon turned to captivating, and I found myself wearing this one a lot and getting many compliments along the way. Beautiful floral-gingery opening with a light musk weaving in and out. This is one I like to label as self renewing. You may not smell it for awhile and then when you least suspect it, you get beautiful wafts that surprise you. Ever so slightly indolic, yet not enough to ruin, it actually enhances the scent. This coming from someone who has a firm dislike of anything ummm ... poopie. Beautiful and long lasting, don't you just love surprises?

Ginger, blackberry, red berries, white musk

You can read more about or buy Ginger Musk here: Lucky Scent - Ginger Musk

Cardinal - Heeley
My favorite incense scent, Cardinal is lightly smoky, warm and comforting. As opposed to Etro Messe de Minuit, there are no damp and moldy notes here. If MdM is the incensey, cold, damp, stone church basement where ancient scrolls are stored, Cardinal is the church attic where the warm sweet incense rises and the sunlight filters in through the rafters.

This warm scent is a nice, simple, incense scent; beautiful in its simplicity.

Notes: Incense, cistus, grey amber, patchouli, vetiver

You can read my first review here: Review - Cardinal
You can purchase Cardinal here: Lucky Scent - Cardinal

Amber Absolute - Tom Ford Private Blend
Whether or not you like the persona, Tom Ford knows his way around the fragrance counter. Bold, opulent, sexy and evocative, the Ford fragrances push the Armani Prives to the back of the bus with an "in your face" attitude that is, well ... Tom Ford. Amber Absolute is rich, dark and sinfully delicious. From my first sniff of the tiny vial in my friend's car, I was memorized. A smoky, resinous, incencey amber that leaps off the skin. This sexy amber wears like pure parfum, long lasting and incredibly sexy. Wear sparingly or this one will knock you over and slap your grandma back in Tennessee.

Amber, African incense, labdanum, rich woods, vanilla bean

View the Tom Ford Website here: Tom Ford
Available from: Saks Fifth Ave & Bergdorf Goodman NYC and Select Neiman Marcus Stores

Mediterranean - Elizabeth Arden
Need a vacation? What a surprise this little number turned out to be, and even more surprising was the number of times I reached for it. The epitome of a vacation scent, this one whisks you away with cool ocean breezes. A sparkling woody floral to enjoy and be enjoyed by others. Be prepared for compliments with this one. Wow, effervescent!

Top: Peach nectar sorbet, sicilian mandarin, damask plum
Mid: Wisteria, star magnolia, Madagascar orchid
Base: Sandalwood, musk, amber

You can find Mediterranean at Macy's.
Or read more about it here at the Elizabeth Arden website.

Fiori d'Ambra - Profumum
A beautiful light floral amber that reminds me of Ambra di Venezia, or what I thought Ambra di Venezia should be, rather than the jasmine scent that it is. But I digress. A beautiful cozy amber with Opium overtones and a slightly boozy nature.

Notes: Amber gris, opium
Buy Fiori d'Ambra here: Lucky Scent - Fiori d'Ambra

Belle En Rykiel - Sonia Rykiel
Proving once again that I can find lavender scents to love, here is a beautiful soft, feminine fragrance resting on a warm amber base. This lovely oriental scent has a lavender-frankincense accord which keeps it comtemporary. Sexy, flirty, confident, Belle is a charmer that garners compliments.

Top: Lavender, Mandarin Orange, Red Currant
Mid: Heliotrope, Incense, Coffee Flower
Base: Patchouli, Amber, Mahogany Wood, Vanilla

You can buy Belle En Rykiel at Beauty.Com: Beauty.Com - Belle

Orange Flower & Amber - Potter & Moore
I discovered this one in a perfumerie at a lush local Southern CA resort spa. It was a summer favorite with it's light, fresh, tender orange blossoms and its warm amber base. Made with natural ingredients and essential oils OF&A feels bright and downright juicy. A spring and summer treat!

You can buy this one at: Beautyhabit - Orange Flower & Amber
Or check out the Potter & Moore website here: Potter & Moore

Anne Pliska Creme - Anne Pliska
This new formula perfumed cream released in February of this year comes in a great stand up tube and has been reformulated with more fragrance and a thicker, creamier texture. I love the dreamy pink color and the way if lasts and lasts!

Buy Anne Pliska Creme here: Lucky Scent - Anne Pliska Creme
Or buy samples or order by phone from the website: Anne Pliska.Com

To See More Favorites and Best of 2007, Check Out My Fellow Bloggers:

  • 15 Minute Beauty Fanatic

  • Afrobella

  • All About The Pretty

  • All Lacquered Up

  • Beauty 411

  • Beauty Blogging Junkie

  • Beauty Talk

  • Beautiful Makeup Search

  • Beauty Hatchery

  • Beauty Jones

  • Blogdorf Goodman

  • Canadian Beauty

  • C'est Chic

  • Coquette

  • eBeautyDaily

  • For The Love of Beauty

  • Give Me Your Eyes I Need Sunshine

  • Getting Amped

  • Grayburn

  • HauteMommaStuff

  • Koneko's Beauty Diary

  • Makeup Bag

  • The Makeup Girl

  • Miss Whoever You Are

  • My Life,My Words,My Mind

  • Legerdenez

  • Perfumista

  • Periodic Style

  • Platinum Blonde Life

  • Product Girl

  • Shop Diary

  • Slap of the Day

  • Steeping Beauty

  • The Beauty Alchemist

  • The Daily Obsession

  • The Life Of A Ladybug

  • The Non-Blonde

  • Urbane Girl

  • We Love Beauty

    Madelyn said...

    Dear V,I loved your review of Virtue of Esther so much so I ordered a sample. what a dazzling bottle . If the juice is good then it's a go !

    Grayburn said...

    lovely fragrance list here. thanks and a great 2008 to you!

    MarkDavid said...

    Vic! So good to see a post from you!!

    Loved your pics

    Have a great New Year!!


    Henna said...

    You hit the nail on its head when you compared the Tom Ford scent to the Armani Prive collection, and your post made me wonder what all the brouhaha was about when there are already scents similar to Tom Ford's. Still, I liked Ford's offering and I love them all.

    Carla said...

    I'm much more comfortable in the world of makeup but you've got a list here that is inspiring me to sample these perfumes. :)

    Happy New Year!

    Beauty411 said...

    Haven't seen a bottle so striking since Fath de Fath (one of my all time faves). Will have to get a sample of the Virtuessence of Esther. Enjoyed your list!

    AMPlifier said...

    Thanks for introducing me to many lines of fragrance; I'd never heard of most of these. I'd like to go out & buy a bottle of Rousse - Serge Lutens, but I'm afraid I'd drink it. ;)

    Well-written descriptions!

    Trina said...

    How have I missed Cardinal??? That sounds fantastic!

    Flora said...

    Your taste is impeccable, as usual! I now regret that I passed up trying Mediterranean the other day - I did not know it was like that. I will stop and sniff next time!

    Fashion's Darling said...

    I love Mediterranean! One of my fave's but I am defitinely going to try to get my hands on the Virtuessence of Esther - Virtue & Valor Inc. I've never herd of some of these fragrances (and I call myslef a perfume junkie- shame on me!)

    Wonderful list.

    Thank you!

    risa said...

    haha, now i MUST try the Fiori d'Ambra, since i also wanted Ambra di Venezia to be an actual amber at first. ;) thanks, Victoria, for a marvelous and beautiful list!

    Roxy said...

    Gorgeous site and delicious list!! Wow ... so many I MUST try, and the bottles are just gorgeous for some of these fragrances. Thanks for turning me on to some new "stuff" ... getting so excited about actually having some lemmings after being so uninspired for so long!

    Happy 2008 :o )