Monday, November 5, 2012


I am currently reading a book called "Deluxe: How Luxury Lost Its Luster" by Dana Thomas, which many of you have heard of, or perhaps read.  It was a recommended read by a friend after I said I need a crash course on luxury brands and I highly recommend to anyone who has even the slightest interest in the fashion business and/or luxury brands.

It's a book that I can relate to on many levels.  I considered myself a business opportunist so I get it when luxury brands expand themselves by targeting the mass market.  At the same time, I felt the pain from true luxury brand enthusiasts who just want their favorite brand to remain a best kept secret from everyone else.  

The hefty price tag on luxury brands did not hinder most, on the contrary, it accentuates desire.  It is a dream that most know is unreal but bought into it regardless.

Although I have resisted the lure of most luxurious items (e.g. handbags, shoes, haute couture), I love perfumes.  I have a growing collection over the years and I am always on the lookout for more.  In the words of Coco Chanel, perfume “is the unseen, unforgettable, ultimate accessory of fashion. . . . that heralds your arrival and prolongs your departure.”  I couldn't have said it better myself.  Perfume is understated and yet it's there.  It tells people who you are.  It tells a story.  It's like a time capsule of memories, immortalized in a scent.  Scent is so powerful it evokes far more memories than a picture ever could for me.  

Here's a selected few perfumes that has spoken to me over the years...  

Christian Dior Miss Dior - my first encounter to perfume and luxury.  It's my mom's.  I think she still has it somewhere in her closet.  I was really little then but I remembered it smelling like jasmine and classy (I can't coin the term then).  It must have shaped my view on luxury brands since.  I don't mind a cheap handbag or shoe but when it comes to perfume, I want the real stuff.  The fake stuff at the grocery stores can never do it for me.

Note: This classic has been discontinued in favor of Miss Dior Cherie. However, it's not the same... it's not the same... *throw tantrums*

Lancōme Trésor - I remember it's been a while since my mom got so excited over any perfume (she had a few more since Miss Dior) and I, now a little older, remembered it smelling like roses and sweet.

Anna Sui Dreams - I actually own a few other Anna Sui perfumes (Love and Dolly Girl) and forever wanting to add Secret Wish to my collection, all of which I like very much but none like how I love Dreams.  It has a very distinct scent and to me, it is musky and mysterious.  

It was also during these years where I experimented with Issey Miyake L'eau d'lssey, Christian Dior J'adore, and Carolina Herrera 212.  All of which I enjoyed a lot.  There was also a time when I enjoyed sniffing Givenchy's Irresistable at the mall a lot.

Vera Wang - Absolutely love this.  It's one of my all time favorites.  If you smell this on me, I am probably doing something important.  It makes me feel feminine and empowered.  If I ever get married, there is no question what I would be wearing... and I don't mean the dress... LOL

Chloé - a recent discovery and has quickly become a favorite.  I loved it so much I went ahead and bought Love, which I didn't love nearly as much.  I was devastated when my bottle leaked in my suitcase during one of my travels.  (I need to invest in one of those travel size bottles.)

Ralph Lauren Romance - now this is how romance smells like to me.  I especially love to wear it in winter since it's a heavy scent.  I spray it on my coat and my scarfs and I love how the scent lingers all day long.

Even I have a lot of perfumes already I still want to expand my collection.  I don't think I have found the "one" yet.  Vera Wang and Chloé are very close though. In addition to Anna Sui's Secret Wish, I want Ormonde Jayne Osmanthus, Marc Jacob's Daisy and a Jo Malone* perfumes.  I have a few favorite colognes as well.  Abercrombie*, Hugo Boss*, Polo Sport, Calvin Klein Crave, and Bvlgari Man are by far my favorites. *I am not sure which one it was but it was something unforgettable.


As much as I am mesmerized by Chanel No. 5, I actually don't like the scent at all.  I personally preferred No. 19 more.  My prejudice to No.5 could also be psychological since my first experience with the scent is from my high school chemistry teacher, who I swear was wearing a fake from the drugstore and she was drenched in it.  I felt like if I buy No. 5 now it would make me no different than anyone else who bought No. 5 just because it's No. 5.  I needed a good intimate experience before I would bite the bullet.  After all, it's supposed to be the queen of all female fragrance.  It deserves a better treatment from me.

*All product images are from the Internet.


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