Monday Question – What Is Your Newest Fragrant Discovery?

What perfume did you recently find that you think should be in the limelight?

Is there a niche brand, old or new, that is practically unknown and wonderful?

Is there a new (or old) perfume we all should know about?

Did you discover something amazing and want to share your treasure?

My Answer:

I’m a perfume blogger, so you’d think I would be well informed about the world of perfume, but I must tell you, as much as I read about new releases, as much as I trail online perfume stores, as many newsletters and press releases as I receive, I’m always astounded at how much passes me by. Not that I need to know everything, not that I can smell it all, not even that I want to, but I’m astounded by the fact that one person is unable to keep up. And I’m not talking about smelling all new releases, which is well nigh impossible, but it is not even possible to stay abreast with all the new lines out there. There are entire perfume houses all with multiple scents being launched left and right that I never heard anything about and I really try to stay informed. Is it me or is it all a bit much?

Who will buy all those perfumes?

Have you all heard of Royal Crown who sells 100ml of EdP for 435€? I must say I’m glad that launch went by me. Do you know the house of Jalaine? Les Voiles Déplièes? Sigilli? Officine delle Essenze? No?

Well, to answer my own question: My latest fragrance discovery are Chanel Cristalle and Molinard Habanita, from 1974 and 1921 respectively. I prefer to look back to the classics right now, rather than try every new perfume out there. I want to wear perfumes that have stood the test of time, that have shown substance and quality over time, that are not immediately replaceable by the next big thing. There are great new perfumes from niche lines of course that are a must try for me (Mona di Orio’s Rose for example) and I’m really spending a lot of time with and loving Parfums MDCI lately, and I’m also perfectly willing and eager even to get to know a completely new line if it somehow touches a chord with me (like Ramon Monegal) but on the whole, I need a bit of a break from the latest and allegedly greatest.

I talked with a friend (dear Lady Jane Grey) the other day, about how little value is put on quality, the marketing spin is everything, be it in perfume, books or even education. Quality seems to be on the way out.

There are new lines who are notable exceptions, thankfully. Neela Vermeire’s India Trio is one of the best recent launches and not because the marketing is perfect. It is great because the perfumes are simply wonderful. Rich, nuanced, well thought-through, high quality ingredients, creative minds behind them, these perfumes will hopefully be with us for a long time. But I fear for them in a market that is after the next new thing, like Homer Simpson is after doughnuts.

What do you think about the state of things in Perfumeland?

About Olfactoria

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76 Responses to Monday Question – What Is Your Newest Fragrant Discovery?

  1. Angie Cox says:

    Bex of London’s EC2 , There is a short review on my page.

  2. skyonfire17 says:

    Lann Ael by Lostmarc’c, perfumers from Brittany. Unusual and lovely.

  3. flittersniffer says:

    Your observations about the state of the market are spot on – in every consumer category pretty much are quality products that are completely eclipsed by the big players, or just by other companies that hustle the most.

    My favourite new perfume discovery is that one from Galway we smelt at Les Senteurs – Castana from Cloon Keen Atelier.

  4. chris says:

    Four fragrances by Labotorio olfattivo – Cozumel – Daimiris – Alkemi – Esvedra , all four of them fantastic and great value at 88 euros each.
    Musk de Roy by Visconti – a marvelous, animalic musk.

  5. Alexandra says:

    My perfume love of the moment is Serge Lutens’ Fleurs d’Oranger, I recognise this is hardly unheard of but I would just like to remind the world how simply wonderful it is! It is beautiful, and heady enough to entice this girl away from her winter Orientals.

    I am glad you have discovered Habanita, I have a much loved modern bottle; but also a tiny sample of the vintage parfum, which is simply sensational: the deep vanilla sweetness is breathtaking (the two shouldn’t be compared very often – it can be a little heartbreaking).

  6. Tara says:

    I can’t say I have heard of any of those new brands you mention. The number of new launches is at an impossible level for anyone to keep up with. Talk about over saturation! Hopefully the cream rises to the top though and the buzz will usually spread across Perfumeland when something really good comes along.

    The perfume I want to shout about is Equistrius by Parfums d’Empire. It’s not from an unknown brand or anything but it doesn’t get talked about very often and it was only your wonderful review that drew me to it (a recommended read!). That gorgeous gourmand iris is my SoTD.

  7. You have summed up the industry perfectly! It’s so difficult to wade through all of those new releases, and like you whole lines will pass me by completely un-sniffed, which makes me worry that sometimes I may be missing out on good things.

    My new recent discovery is Ruth Mastenbroek’s Amorosa, which is very lovely indeed. I hope to see some more interesting things from her.

  8. My newest discovery is Prescriptives Calyx. I know that I have tried it for many years ago but I can’t remember what I thought of it then, not much I guess because I had forgotten about it. Now I think it’s a lovely fresh green fragrance, with powdery rose. I just got myself a bottle for the summer!

  9. masha7 says:

    I’ve been missing about 95% of the new launches lately, but I haven’t minded much at all. I’ve got so many wonderful bottles and decants and samples to appreciate, that if I don’t add a thing for 3 years, that would be OK. However…Katlyn Breene at Mermade Magickal sent me some of her “wearable incense oils”- they aren’t perfumes, they’re based on her incredible incense. Green Wood is saving my sanity right now in this crushing heat- I can dab a little on and feel like I’m in an Alpine forest in autumn with some incense wafting over the hill. I’ve also been enjoying old d/c’d classics like YSL Nu, which is also based on incense, and HM’s Magical Moon, which is also based on…do I have a penchant for incense or what??

    • Olfactoria says:

      You seem to be on a bit of an incense kick. 🙂
      Nu is lovely, I have a mini.
      You are right, the world moves on, even if we miss a lot of launches. 😉

  10. Zubi d'Nova / Melissa de Blok says:

    Gah! Something went wrong with Neela’s shipment a few weeks ago (she has sent another sample pack now) so I’m still dying to try her stuff – I’m half Indian so I loved the idea behind it. Feeling like everyone has a sample but me now. 😛

    What did I discover? Well I mainly discovered in recent days that being a perfumista somehow relates to the fact that I am sensual in all ways, and that I love everything that appeals to my senses, as well as *creating* things that appeal to the senses (I write songs, I sing, I cook, I photograph). As an artist this was a mindblowing revelation.

    I also discovered a new brand called Magnetic Scent, made by a psychologist who is based in Holland. I plan to go get some samples from him, because he has a very interesting look on things.
    I got a free sample of his with a perfume I bought (Ambre Russe – Parfum d’Empire) online, and although it def is not me, I cannot deny that it is well-crafted. It’s called “Untitled #2”,and has no notes, but he said he found a “chai” note he wanted to make wearable…. and boy did he succeed! I don’t think I have EVER smelled a tea note that is SO realistic. The smell of proper Indian chai goes into black tea, and it’s actually too weird for me to wear, simply because it is so realistic. The milk in the beginning made me a bit nauseous, simply, again, because it was so darn realistic!
    Here, have a read:

  11. Isabeau says:

    I have to agree with you it’s hard to keep up with all the new launches!
    Recently I discovered the Hilde Soliani fragrances..I was so suprised by this house..I love so many of them especially Fraagata Salaata, VaniChic and Dooliccissimo (only those names 😉 and I have to say I discovered a new love named Amytis by Nabucco (only the price ;-( ), this perfume oil is just so lovely it does remind me a little bit of Angelique Noir by Guerlain.

    • Olfactoria says:

      I have been curious about Amytis by Nabucco for a while, but the price keeps me off…
      As for Hilde Soliani, I wish she would use less vocals, she is apparently not a friend of Google 😉 I’m hoping to try her line eventually though.

  12. bloodyfrida says:

    I think I’m the only perfume blogger and lover that didn’t fall head over heels with Neela’s creations. Hmmm. Anyhoo, I’m absolutely loving Coty L’Aimant these days. And yep, it’s difficult to keep up with all the releases, so other than sampling (and unfortunately loving) Rose De Siwa, I’m attempting to keep clear of all new samples for a long while.

    Happy Monday, B!

    • Olfactoria says:

      Happy Monday, Carol!
      Rose de Siwa – ah, I wish I hadn’t sampled it either… 🙂 Sometimes steering clear of all things new is not a bad idea at all.

    • masha7 says:

      I found them intriguing but unwearable. So that’s 2 of us. Well, I did like the mango, but it didn’t last long enough on me to justify a purchase. I love that she launched with only 3 and that so much care was obviously put into them. They just weren’t for me.

  13. Suzanne says:

    I’m happily oblivious to most new launches. That said, though, one of the most amazing perfumes that came my way this year was Carmine from the House of Matriarch — and I would never have sought it out (because it’s an all-natural and I don’t usually have good luck with them), so it was just a very lucky stroke that Sigrun from FragrantFanatic sent me a small decant. I think about Carmine quite a bit, because for the same money I would spend for an Amouage, it comes in the most beautiful crystal flacon. And it’s easily one of the most gorgeous and unique scents I’ve ever worn.

    • Zubi d'Nova / Melissa de Blok says:

      Luckily for me, their site doesn’t seem to work very well, as I was about to go on a spree! 😛 It literally doesn’t load – is it just me?

      Thanks for the rec, I’ll be sure to look out for it 🙂

    • Olfactoria says:

      Sounds intriguing – and familiar. Sigrun sent me a sample too, I must dig it out again…

  14. Asali says:

    I think at the moment it’s more a case of re-discovering things I didn’t pay too much attention to start with, because there were so/ too many other things at the time. Anyway, right now it’s Promesse de l’Aube, I keep spraying my sample hoping I’ll not like it as much as I thought (because of the pricetag). And I still can’t get over how much I like Lys Soleia. Lily, tuberose and tropical fruits would not normally be a cocktail for me, but it’s great. A real discovery:-)

    • Olfactoria says:

      We are very much in sync again, I’m all over the MDCI’s too right now and Promesse was my first love from the line. It is unquestionably beautiful. My greatest love is Péché Cardinal though. Oh so good!!!

  15. Amy Bella says:

    I have not been a Perfumeland dweller for very long so I am grateful to my favorite bloggers for sharing their experiences and keeping me in the loop! Thank you- your perspective and willingness to slog through so much information is appreciated greatly!

    • Olfactoria says:

      You are very welcome, Amy!
      Despite eternal discussions about that topic – it’s a good thing there are so many perfume bloggers (in more ways than this of course), because there is just too much out there for just a few… 😉

  16. smellythoughts says:

    Sounds like lots of people are enjoying the new BEX fragrances – I hated them :’)

    Anyway, my recent discovery was Musc Maori by Parfumerie Generale – I have ignored it for so long and I know this is old new for everyone. It was my most recent purchase and I just love it. Lasts all day – sexy and overtly gourmand – some slightly off notes that make it a little uncomfortable at times – but all in all the best chocolate fragrance I have tried mmmmmmmm. Gonna post my review tonight I think 😛 can’t resist another spray haha.

    I briefly tried Mona’s new Rose… wasn’t my thing 😦 I did like her Cuir though! So thanks for the recommendation 🙂

  17. annemariec says:

    Habanita is a recent discovery of mine too. I was astounded that something could simultaneously smell that old and that cutting edge at the same time. If it were released today by a niche house at three times the price and was only sold in Paris and one small city in New Zealand, people would be falling over themselves to get their hands on it.

    My other newbie is, ahem, Gucci Rush. Makes me happy. And I think the packaging is hilarious, and very on-message with the fragrance.

    • Olfactoria says:

      They recently relaunched Habanita in EdP with a slightly overhauled bottle. I didn’t smell that yet, so I don’t know whether it has changed from the EdT. The price has definitely changed. 😉

  18. Eva S says:

    Right now I’m mostly testing things that are not so new (Guerlain, F.Malle, Chanel, S Lutens) instead of new releases. There are so many “classics” that I haven’t tried yet!
    My latest discoveries was that I could so much enjoy a tuberose scent (Carnal Flower), and PdN Odalisque an ELdO Bijou Romantique.

  19. Undina says:

    Even though I cannot claim it as my discovery (many thanks go to Suzanne), I’ve been enjoying Chypre Palatin (Parfums MDCI) recently. It is such an interesting perfume! I should probably look into testing more of their perfumes.

    Also, new Dawn’s collection (YSL-inspired) unexpectedly completely captured me. I want at least two perfumes from it and like most of the rest.

    • Olfactoria says:

      Me too! Chypre Palatin is wonderful. I’m sure you would like a few more in the line, so far all I have tried are fantastic.
      I haven’t gotten around to Dawn’s new perfumes yet, I really should…

  20. I just tried Maison Francis Kurkdjian (???) Lumiere Noire pour Femme this weekend — it’s a great rose! Reminds me very much of L’Arte di Gucci. I was happy to snag a sample.

  21. Ines says:

    I’m wondering if Nez a Nez is only a new discovery for me – the Bal Musque is the first musky perfume I fell head over heels in love with.
    And an oldy but goldy (which I discovered through Asali and wasn’t grateful she introduced me to a discontinued perfume) is Un Air de Samsara – a perfect summer perfume for me.
    I still can’t believe they discontinued something so good… :S

    • Olfactoria says:

      I always ignore Nez a Nez when I see them, so many brands, so little time. But when you like Bal Musque so much (great name too!), I’ll surely have a sniff.

  22. Lady Jane Grey says:

    Well, you know my opinion about the mdiocre, we discussed it enough … Perfume is a matter where less is more (don’t we have a bit of a new release inflation righ tnow?)

    For a newborn every old joke is new… – so was Heeley’s L’Amandiere for me (I know, I know, I sound like an old Shellac, got stuck).

  23. Dubaiscents says:

    Since I am so new to the whole world of niche perfumes I would have to say that all of them are newly discovered to me but, it has been a wonderful journey of trying so many classics, new releases and everything in between. It is only thanks to the wonderful advice I have found on this blog that I have even the slightest clue of where to begin since you can so easily be overwhelmed, especially here where we are spoiled for choice.
    That said, my newest (as of yesterday) treasure is a bottle of Mona di Orio’s Oiro. I have only worn it few hours but, I absolutely love it so far. I can’t stop sniffing my arm. And yes, I am now one of those “crazy” people who will buy a 200 euro bottle of perfume without smelling it first! Thanks Birgit for giving me the confidence to go for it!

    • Olfactoria says:

      To be clear, I don’t usually recommend blind-buying 200€ botttles, or even 20€ ones, but Mona’s Oiro is a rarity that is easy to re-sell in case you don’t like it, but I’m very glad to hear you do! 😀

      It makes me happy that my blog is of help to you on your journey through Perfumeland. Happy sniffing! 😉

  24. I don’t have a new fragrance discovery to report right now. But your mention of Habanita reminds me that it is one I have wanted to sample.

  25. My new fragrance (not new) is Nuits de Noho – Bond – I love it – reminiscent of Angel by Thierry Mugler, but not so “in your face”. Not on the same topic, a friend is going to Paris and I would like a bottle of perfume only sold in Paris that I couldn’t get in the US – does anyone have any recommendations? Thank you.

    • Olfactoria says:

      The first thing that comes to mind, that is truly exclusive to Paris are the Serge Lutens bell jars of course. Depending on where you live, the exclusive Guerlains are also a lot easier to come by in Paris. My personal obsession right now is Parfums MDCI, wonderful stuff, they are also available in Paris (for example at Jovoy), so I’d go for one of theirs.

  26. Julie says:

    New to me are Absolu de Rochas, which I find similar to Cartier Le Baiser du Dragon. A few from Olympic Orchids: Olympic Amber to my nose is a beautiful, dusty incense. Siam Proun I can only describe as rounded, umami, herbal, which makes absolutely no sense and doesn’t do it justice, but I just don’t have the words to better describe it.

  27. ginzaintherain says:

    I’m with you. I do try and sample the newest creations, but I keep getting drawn back to the vintage classics (also, their rarity, the fact they will disappear and be possibly, truly irreplaceable, adds extra drops of preciousness). Habanita is unbelievably good, and Cristalle is just perfect on certain days. So elegant.

    • Olfactoria says:

      I’m glad you agree! It is better to know and appreciate perfumes that have stood their ground for decades, than to go after every new release that is probably off the market again within two years.
      That said, did you try the Neela Vermeire perfumes?

  28. Tania says:

    Ruth Mastenbroek’s perfume, which I chased down at Senti in Wimbledon. It’s a very nice blackcurrant-y, classic-smelling scent, which I’ve been spraying with abandon this cool, wet summer, to make me think of warmer weather!
    And Angela Flanders Precious One. Which I’m still thinking how to describe… it’s complex. But I love it.

  29. Dionne says:

    Since I puddle along at my own pace, I rarely try the new stuff just as it comes out and so I don’t even bother to try and keep up. Because of it, I’m hilariously late to the party for many fragrances. Sometime later this summer I’ll be waxing all poetic about fig fragrances because Philosykos smells great – who knew? (I know, pretty much everybody but me ;))

    Newest discovery is Alessandro by Mazzolari. Never heard of the brand or the fragrance before, but got a sample while working my way through the heliotropes and had a moment of “Oh heyyy, this is really nice……”

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