Alternative Uses Of Perfume – The Husband Reports

By The Husband

Having a two year old can sometimes be a challenge.

I don’t mean the old “I get up at 5am every day, because I can” routine, or the “Let me see if I can use the iPad to its full potential” quest, but what I mean is the “Give me something to write with and I will try it on any surface other than paper” spiel.

It so happened at our cottage the other day, that little Niki got his hands on a black Sharpie and quietly and stealthily proceeded to draw on the furniture. White furniture that is.

Now ordinarily this would not have been too much of a problem, since a vast stock of appropriate cleaning supplies for all occasions is maintained at our place. At the cottage there is almost nothing but a broom, some rags to mop the floor and mild soap. We are not here to clean after all…

With the upcoming visit of the grandparents in mind and not wanting to replace the furniture, I had to come up with something.

The first thing that came to mind was “orange solvent” – the essential oil made from orange peels and sold to dentists worldwide to clean almost every glue, resin or impression material used in a patients mouth. Unfortunately, I do not keep a bottle with me at all times, especially since I hate the smell of it. The peel of a tangerine didn’t do the job and no oranges were to be found.

I had hoped that maybe Birgit brought one of the perfumes I hate (the ones smelling like orange peel) but since I do detest them, she apparently left them at home where she wears them secretly, while I am out.

And then all the stories, backstories, info, and lectures on perfumes I am subjected to more or rather less voluntarily, paid off! The base of a perfume can be either oil or alcohol. Alcohol – the other secret dental weapon!

So did I clean the furniture? I sure did, pristine whiteness was restored and the house still smells really nice, but now I apparently have to buy a full bottle of Guerlain Angelique Noire as soon as possible and a furious and incredulous wife to contend with.

Editor’s Note: Having a 38 year old can sometimes be a challenge. Upon searching a little further, an alcoholic hand disinfectant could have been found in the kitchen, along with several cleaning supplies and Angelique Noire could have been spared, but alas, I will surely use this incident as leverage the next time we pass an exclusive Guerlain counter. 😉

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67 Responses to Alternative Uses Of Perfume – The Husband Reports

  1. Mitzy says:

    That is as bad as when the kitten peed in my brand new leather bag!! Thank god it wasn’t a designer one, but it still was a pretty expensive litter box.

  2. Tatiana says:

    Gasp! You’re both joking, right? The DH (dear husband) didn’t really use Angelique Noire to clean furniture with? Did he? Oh my. So glad I am sitting down. Not sure what I would have done, if my DH had done the same. At any rate, enjoy your next trip to the Guerlain counter and I think a bonus bottle is called for in this instance.
    Happy New Year to you and your family.

    • the husband says:

      Of course I am NOT joking. I am actually pretty proud of myself since a) I cleaned up the mess, b) I used something that didn’t stink up the room forever (I am looking at you, Mitsouko) and c) found something that is relatively easy to replace.

  3. Lavanya says:

    LOL..:D really??? I mean, you really did that?? Or did you make it up for the benefit of this post? It is still a very funny and entertaining post- but please tell me you didn’t use up all of Birgit’s perfume?

  4. andrea says:

    What a shame you did not stumble across a more mainstream re cheaper perfume to clean with. A bottle of Tom Ford violet blonde for example would have been far easier to find. At least a happy ending will happen, B will get her fb very soon I am sure?:-)

  5. Sandra says:

    Oh you had me giggling as I understand all too well the dangers of a two year old. I think you secretly used a perfume so you could purchase an exclusive Guerlain for Birgit! You just needed the right excuse. 😉 Happy New Year to you and your family.

    • the husband says:

      To be honest, Sandra, I didn’t know about the exclusiveness. But I will replace the product, even if I have to take a trip to London, Paris or New York all by myself. 🙂 Happy New Year to you as well.

  6. Vanessa says:

    This is an absolutely brilliant tale, and may I firstly express my profound admiration that you are a husband who *cleans* any part of the house, even if only on an ad hoc emergency basis. When the dishes start to mount at our house, Mr Bonkers simply goes away and comes back two days later.Your choice of weapon made absolute sense on a professional level and was clearly effective in this instance. What I haven’t quite understood is the timeline of events, which led to B’s new perfume love being liberally *wasted* instead of the more expendable cleaning materials to whose whereabouts she was privy. Was B out at the key moment perhaps?

    The good thing about the incident is that, having deployed Angelique Noir in this lowly capacity, for which its alcoholic content was mission-critical, you cannot fail to get a great deal on the replacement bottle. Threaten them with submission to Stiftung Warentest in the household cleaner category. Though it might not make it as “Best Buy”, I sense….
    ; – )

    • the husband says:

      Hi Vanessa, Angelique Noir indeed has all the qualities I was looking for. A pleasant smell and the potency to clean off a permanent marker, but leaving the surface (paint) intact. Birgit was out with Paul at that moment so I really had no choice but to act quickly on my own. I didn’t want to risk being wrongly accused of falling asleep on the couch with a book fallen out of my hands while taking the responsibility of watching Niki. My review for Stiftung Warentest is already in the making, up next are Chanel No5 (the gold standard), an Amouage, and Angel.

      • vanessa says:

        Am not surprised that Chanel No 5 is the “gold standard” given its specially formulated stain-removing fizzing action. Those aldehydes are *so* much more than a pretty smell… : – )

  7. Lila says:

    Very enterprising husband – at least he wasn’t using the Clive Christian! x

  8. Haha this post is hilarious, I can just imagine B’s face upon discovery that her Angelique Noir had been used up!

    Mr O can be forgiven though, it sounds like he puts up with a lot :P, I’m sure my partner would agree!

    Oh and B, you MUST take full advantage next time you walk past an exclusive Guerlain counter.

    • the husband says:

      Thank you for your sympathy, Candy Perfume Boy. It’s not that bad except for a few awful scents occasionally. And please don’t ask your partner for his opinion on a scent unless you are willing and able to take it as is without questioning it. If the non-perfumista doesn’t like something he doesn’t like it, no matter what genius came up with the concoction.

  9. Ines says:

    Of all the decants you had with you, the husband chose Angelique Noire?! 🙂

    Oh well, at least now you’ll get a full bottle. 😉
    (that’s a really good silver lining if you ask me)

  10. Tara says:

    Oh my goodness, this post is PRICELESS! Well, maybe the price of a FB of Angelique Noire… Knowing that the 2 year old in my life (who is coming to stay tonight) started to draw on her dress because she ran out of paper, I can totally relate. I love that in the end it turned out to be an exclusive Guerlain and one that B has particularly grown to love of late. I suggest closer attention to OT and Facebook in order to make an informed choice next time (OK, B, no next time!).

    Alls well that ends well though; Niki got to enjoy the fun of drawing on big, white surfaces, the furniture was restored in time for the grandparents visit, B gets her full bottle and we get a fun post! I’m left wondering if I should be concerned about what I’m liberally spraying on my skin every day, but still…

  11. Sally- Anne says:

    ohhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh such a fun read,particularly as i’m reading this on new year’s eve,half sozzled. i will ,however take you to task, Mr O. What is so wrong with Mitsouko? it is a gorgeous ,glorious little ‘number’

    • the husband says:

      Happy New Year to you, too, Sally-Anne. I know Mitsouko is considered a masterpiece, and timeless and whatnot, but the only thing it reminds me of is the vile smell of green shield-bugs. (palomena prasina – the green stink bug). Since you are in Australia, on the other side of the world from me, please feel free to wear it whenever you please. 😉

  12. On my “blog reads” sidebar, the post title immediately following yours is, appropriately, “Cleaning Up” by 1000 Scents 🙂

  13. Natalie says:

    Hahahahahaha. Thank you so much for the laughs this morning. I am as impressed with your resourcefulness under duress as I am pleased that Birgit will now get her full bottle of Angelique Noire! I do hope you report on any other uses you find for perfume (unless Birgit decides to keep her perfumes under lock and key after this). 🙂

    • the husband says:

      You are welcome, Natalie. Just as high blood pressure medications are now being used to treat baldness and bad performance there may be an off label use for perfume as well. I will go on with my research and keep you posted.

  14. deeHowe says:

    M, this is perhaps the funniest thing I have ever read. I went from shouting out loud, “oh my god oh my god oh my god,” to giggling uproariously, to force my own dear husband to listen while I read the tale aloud. We both have now had a good laugh at your expense, so I want to thank you for that. Angelique Noire! ROTFL!!!! Your little cottage truly does smell great 🙂

    And B, I’ll bet Mr. O chose that one specifically, just so he could buy you a full bottle 😉

    • the husband says:

      I am glad I was able to help, Dee. Although the smell is nice I may go for something lasting a little longer next time. From what I hear Andy Tauer seems to be the best bet.

  15. Caro says:

    My most sacrosanct belongings are my fragrances, which I keep locked, aways from everyone.
    You are lucky to be married to Birgit. Someone else would have divorced you. At best.
    Wishing the happiest New Year ever to both of you!

    PS: come to think of it, my husband could have perfectly done something similar

  16. HemlockSillage says:

    This is hysterically funny and horrifying at the same time! Oh, my goodness! I must have looked like a fish, whilst reading your post.

    I wish my cleaning products smelled like Angelique Noir. I’m just flabbergasted about actually using AN as a solvent. I had pause at trying The Laundress’ products, due to their high cost. After your tale, I may go out and try them, just because. You’ve inspired me 🙂 I’m glad to hear it all ends well; marker gone, FB of Angelique Noir for your wife. Be well!

    • the husband says:

      I can’t believe somebody had that idea already, HemlockSillage. I wonder if the use can be reversed, because at 2$ per fl. oz. The Laundress has a pretty cheap perfume line going.

  17. civava says:

    Familiar story. Our Ana once found black marker in my husbands bag and she made a really nice picture on the living room floor. Well at least you have a nice smelling house now ;-). My reaction would be the same if my man would use some of my favorite perfumes. Happy new year!

    • the husband says:

      When I was a kid I myself was accused of drawing on my parents’ wall, Civava. But I was old enough to deny it, hide the evidence and put the blame on the cleaning lady.

  18. Undina says:

    You both are just adorable! Thank you for the great story.

    I was just thinking… Any plans for visiting California before your Picasso grows up? I can strategically place a painting tools as well as a wide selection of small decants for perfumes I’d love to get a FB bottle. Just asking… 😉

    • the husband says:

      Thanks for the offer, Undina. His agent has him booked for shows in Europe until May 2014 and I am not sure whether he will still be in his abstract phase then. We will consider it. 😉

  19. Julie says:

    I too am rolling on the floor laughing, 🙂 Do you happen to be a dental specialist, Dr. O? I’m wondering how you knew about orange oil solvent, which I have a bottle of here in my house, which you COULD HAVE borrowed instead of using Angelique Noir!!! My husband is an endodontist – just curious. Wishing you and your family a very Happ New Year!

    • the husband says:

      I am a Maxillofacial Surgeon as well as a general dentist, Julie. I have a few bottles at the office but won’t bring any home since I dislike the smell of Orange Oil. Have a Happy New Year!

  20. lady jane grey says:

    Now, my life is fulfilled : I not only managed to bring pleasure with my decant of A.N. to the wife, but my little present was useful for the whole family (incl. grandparents…).

  21. lady jane grey says:

    Abuse ? No way ! Hardly ever in the history has been a parfume so useful 🙂

  22. Georgy says:

    Reality or fiction! Hillariously funny thx u DH for a good laugh on new years day!

  23. GeM says:

    (Pleased to meet&read you, The Husband!)

    I really can’t figure out why my Birgit was furious!
    I know this won’t be exactly The Glamour Manifesto, but now I’m realizing that this alternative use is something I’ve already done pretty well with some fragrance, too… It’s perfectly normal.

    Not with a Guerlain Exclusifs, though! (even a regular Guerlain either!)


    Anyway, I’m not the Spanish Inquisition, so:
    – Please, The Husband, take my hand and, like if you were a parrot, repeat after me: “with a Guerlain…. Nevermore, nevermore, nevermore, hey NEVERMORE with a Guerlain, nevermore, nevermore…!”
    – Please, Birgit, forgive the very big scent sins, big scent sins, scent sins and little scent sins of The Husband.

    The End

    Hey I wish I were there in your cottage, just for a whiff!!!

    • the husband says:

      Nevermore, nevermore, nevermore, GeM.


      On the other hand, why do it with something you don’t like the smell of? Especially since the longevity of a smell seems to be much better on furniture than on skin. I am starting to see it as a compliment to Guerlain.

  24. Warum says:

    I have finally made it to this post, and oh my oh my! I laughed, and shook my head… I am so happy you will be getting AN for B.
    I am about to read it to Mr. W and I am EAGER to hear his opinion!

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  28. Lean S says:

    O.O I was just reading through your recent “Smell With Me – Olfactoria’s Travels Turns Two!” post and came upon this. Hahahaha this is so outrageous!! On another note, I am very much enjoying your posts and will continue to read them.

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