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Thursday, September 10, 2015

Review & Recommendation: Dame Perfumery

I purchased 2 7ml trial sizes from Dame Perfumery some time ago and finally got to reviewing them. The 2 scents I got were Black Flower Mexican Vanilla and Peach Blossom, Violet & Vanilla, and got 3 additional free samples.

I can't comment on the turnaround time since I shipped it to my brother and he doesn't notice when things arrive, and I didn't need to contact their customer service for anything.

Dame Perfumery only sells their scents in 7ml trial sizes or 50ml full sizes, so they definitely require more of a commitment. The trial sizes are $8.50 or 10.00, and the full sizes are $65 each. Shipping's free so that's a bonus. Unfortunately, they do not sell outside the US.

It's kinda sad for us non-US based perfume lovers since these perfumes are great quality.

If you're in the US though, they have this fun deal where they'll send you a free sample if you send them a postcard from where you live. I know they don't send the samples internationally, but I'm tempted to send them something from Indonesia just to add to their postcard collection!


Perfumes General Review

There are really well-crafted, great quality scents even though I personally didn't find any scent that really worked for me. All 5 scents I got somehow ended up being scents that I see more suited on older women. They're definitely great and I can see them in high end department stores, but I do find the scent a bit too old for me. I'd recommend them in a heartbeat to my mom's friends though (and they have very expensive tastes since they're Indonesian ladies...).

The throw and longevity is definitely great. I can smell it wafting around as I type when I apply it on my wrist, but I do have to go almost as close as faux whispering distance to get the full body of the scent. The scents generally stay at this scent for 1.5-2h, before fading to about kissing distance. I lose track of how long it stays within kissing distance, because even after 7h, it's still at that strength. Usually I end up accidentally washing my hands/showering before I can figure out just how long the scent would last before it fades on its own.


Review Notes

As always, reviews are done blind until the TL;DRs are written. If any of the notes surprise me, I write an overview. I've also started adding a "Final Verdict" section to help me keep track of my perfumes and figure out what to destash, since my perfume collection is starting to get messy. Here are the categories I came up with for my "Final Verdict":

  • Love: Most awesome perfume ever. Need endless supplies of it and will swap my first born child for the last drops of it if it's limited edition. 
  • Like: I like it and may buy a full size of it, but it's not urgent. 
  • Interesting: I don't really like it or I don't think I  can wear it in public, but I appreciate the artistry of the scent. It's like a beautiful but unwearable runway piece you won't buy on your own, but don't mind owning.
  • Ok: It's okay. I like it enough, but may destash for a good price to keep my collection manageable. 
  • Destash: Kill it with fire.
  • Age it: Maybe it will smell good one day. One day. Just wait.


Black Flower Mexican Vanilla

"The composition is vanilla absolute with touches of lemon, grapefruit, caramel, nutmeg, gardenia, jasmine, sandalwood, patchouli, vetiver, musk and tonka - but the ingredient list is less important than the final blend."

This is one of those heavier, powdery sort of scents. There's definitely a floral scent here that has a similar bitter bite to it as Deconstructing Eden's Black No. 1, but the heavy, powdery bit gives me a headache and reminds me of old ladies. There's also a slight tartness that may be a caramel note gone wrong.  

After 5-8 min, the bitterness I love went away and I'm getting delicious caramel, with a bright, clean sweetness...unfortunately the heavy powderiness is still there. It still smells like a scent for older women.

After about 30 min in, the scent kind of reminds me of a more powdery and slightly heavier version of a mainstream perfume Brown Sugar Vanilla perfume I've tried before (can't remember the brand). That scent was leaning towards too heavy for Indonesian weather for me, so it's not for me. I can see this being perfect for winter though!

TL;DR: A more heavy, mature version of a Brown Sugar Vanilla-type scent.

Final Verdict: Destash


Dark Horse

"The composition is a blend of bergamot, lemon, cinnamon, jasmine, carnation, rose, clove, guaiac wood, vetiver, vanilla and musk."

Oh this is gorgeous. I get the best perfumed version of vanilla caramel. The vanilla caramel is rich, decadent and smell so delicious, but it has this musky perfumed touch to it that it smells more like perfume than dessert. Again, it's on the heavier side and makes me think of a more mature woman. I see this as the perfect scent for someone in her 40s who want an age appropriate vanilla scent.

When the scent dries down on me, I get a more powdery floral sort of vanilla. I actually like the dry down much better since it's lighter and feels younger.

TL;DR: The perfect vanilla for someone in her 40s.

Overview: I checked the description and apparently this scent is unisex. I did not expect it at all, since I find it too powdery and floral for a men's scent.

Final Verdict: Ok..or may age it until I'm in my 40s.


Desert Rose

"The composition is a blend of Turkish rose otto and Damascenia Rose with touches of peach, Sicilian lemon, Egyptian jasmine, geranium, carnation, heliotrope, sandalwood, musk, amber and vanilla."

Oh wow, this is the first relatively light scent I got from Dame. It smells like a light, lotiony candied rose. There's a slight tartness that lightens up the scent even more, though the rose does weigh the scent down a bit. By close to 30 min, the tartness just smells off on me and I can't really figure out why.

The scent makes me think of those really sour rose-hibiscus sort of floral teas that smells kind of like potpourri. The kind that looks really pretty but taste so sour and dusty, you're wondering if it's meant to be potpourri instead but by now, you're too afraid to ask. I still like the quality and I think this is a wonderful scent, just not for me.

This tea is called Sweet Melody and you can buy it from

When it dries down, it's so beautiful. It smells like a burst of powdery little flowers, mingled with fresh, light white florals. I really, really love the dry down!

TL;DR: Lotiony candied roses, turning into sour rose-hibiscus tea, turning into clean, fresh florals.

Overview: Carnation often smells tea-like to me, the lemon is definitely behind the sourness, and I'm guessing the sandalwood is behind the dusty scent. I was trying to figure out how heliotrope smells like and found this description from Fragantica:
Garden heliotrope has been a constant feature since at least the Victorian times, thanks to its delicious scent that oscillates between marzipan, vanilla, cherry pie and almond (hence its alternative name "cherry pie flower"). 
I'm guessing that's creating that candied scent.

Final Verdict: Like


Pear, Waterlily & Amber

"Top notes are pear, mandarin orange and lemon; middle notes are water lily, cherry blossom, honeysuckle and jasmine; base notes are amber, sandalwood, musk and vanilla."

Again, this is a heavier scent. There's this clean, crisp floral, but underneath is this heavier velvety scent that makes me. The velvety part is kind of powdery, and has that cottony baby oil note that's sometimes called Egyptian musk by some perfumers. It started off a bit too heavy for me, but after about 10 min, everything blends together beautifully to make this, clean, blue, powdery sort of scent that's extremely elegant and serene.

It makes me think of the kind of woman who can still smile graciously and remain an amazing hostess, even as the police breaks into her mansion to arrest her husband for running a Ponzi scheme.

Wondering whether it's more polite to serve the police tea before or after they've dragged your husband to jail...
Gorgeous photography by Joanna Kustra

I was going to say that this scent is slightly too old for me and more of a late 20s sort of scent....until I realized I'm qualifying for late 20s soon. Crap. I definitely love it, but I still think it's for someone with a more classically elegant personality.

As the scent dries down, it gets more powdery on me and it makes me think of stately, blue drawing rooms for some reason.

TL;DR: An impeccably elegant lady.

Final Verdict: Like


Peach Blossom, Violet & Vanilla

"Top notes are peach blossom, red berries, hyacinth and bergamot; middle notes are parma violet, jasmine and rose; base notes are tahitian vanilla, driftwood and musk."

This starts of extremely sweet, with a freshness that smells almost like room spray at first. I didn't need to worry though, since Dame's perfumes are top notch. The scent calms down to this elegant, clean sort of scent. I want to say that it makes me think of white linen, only I'm hesitating since white linen tends to make people think of dryer sheets sort of scents. This is a more upscale version of a white linen scent –it's the white linen from luxury hotels that are so upscale, they'd be offended to be called a 5-star hotel. It's really wearable though, and smells more like perfume than a room scent.

Unfortunately, underneath, there's this musky, heavy sort of scent that again makes me think of more mature women. While it complements the scent perfectly and makes it smell like languorously lounging on white, silken sheets, it smells too old for me.

After about 50 min, the scent gets really soapy on me. The kind of soapiness that makes you practically taste the soapsuds in your mouth. It's still a top-notch sort of soapiness though!

TL;DR: An older woman languorously lounging on white, silken sheets.

Final Verdict: Destash

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