Fragrances are last on my list of beauty things to buy. Not because I hate perfume, but because shopping for a scent is tedious. I’m always perplexed reading such descriptions as "notes of citrus, white peony, cedarwood, honey, raspberry and white musk." Why can’t I just have whatever Beyoncé is wearing in Partition?
Thus I decided to go in a different direction.
We all know you shouldn’t judge a book by its cover, but maybe you should judge a perfume by its name. I want its title to encompass everything I seek in a fragrance. It should be powerful, sexy, alluring, and bootylicious. It should also make me feel those qualities once spritzed on my neck and wrists.
So forget names like Dot, Happy, Love, Cotton, Daisy, and Flowerbomb. When people ask what scent I’m wearing I should be replying ,"It's called I Be The Baddest Girl Around by Drake." When he finally and inevitably creates fragrances for women, that is.
While this proved to be a tall order (lipsticks, it turns out, have sexier names than perfumes), I did manage to find four fragrances to experiment with.
Fresh Brown Sugar
Brown Sugar by Fresh is obviously a contender. Look at me; I’m a brown lady who’s been told on numerous occasions I tasted like sugar. The latter part of that statement may not be entirely true, but the fragrance name still makes me believe otherwise.
Brown Sugar is citrus-y and sweet: tangerine, açaí berry, and Sicilian lemon with sugared magnolia, sheer honeysuckle, and caramel. It's a powerful scent but not overpowering once on the skin. And when it totally dries, the base notes are subtle while the sweet aroma of caramel is quite comforting.
Its downfall? No real staying power. And to be honest, it doesn’t make me feel sexy or bootylicious. Instead, I wanted to lie in the park and think happy thoughts.
Brown Sugar conjured up more "Waka Waka (This Time For Africa)" vibes than "Hips Don’t Lie." Speaking purely in Shakiran terms of course.
“Made for the woman who shatters expectations, this fragrance imbues with a feeling of power, a sense that she can attain whatever she wants--even the thrill of the forbidden.” Whoever wrote this description deserves a copywriting award.
Gucci Guilty has notes of lilac, pink pepper, peach, patchouli, amber, mandarin, orange, and geranium. This combo creates a warm and smoky aroma that is both spicy and alluring. The top floral notes were very apparent at first spray, but as Guilty settled, the spices were more compelling and seductive.
It’s a mature and playful scent that intensifies the more you sweat (this one belongs in the bedroom). And quite frankly, the aroma transported me to the set of a French noir film. Delusional? Maybe, but I still give Gucci Guilty five bootylicious stars.
Lush Lust Solid Perfume
No surprise, Lush Lust has already been already covered on xoVain and received rave reviews. Since the name fit the bill and the ingredients sounded promising, I reserved this number for a night out in hopes of feeling a strong sexual desire (for myself).
Lust is rich--it's got jasmine, rose, ylang ylang, vanilla, and sandalwood. Once applied, though, the aroma is so intense and thick that I contemplated washing it off. But as it settled, it became more smooth and balanced.
I was also stunned at its longevity, given that it's an inexpensive perfume, and relieved the dye didn’t stain my skin or clothing. Yet the fragrance still ended up wearing me and not the other way around. I felt more like a bouquet of flowers than a cat in heat.
Estée Lauder Pleasures Intense
Why yes, I would like to experience intense pleasures. But to be honest, initially, I wasn’t too keen on the amount of floral notes in this Estée Lauder perfume. See, I want to smell like a minx--not a garden.
The top notes for Pleasures Intense include peony, green lily, and cassis. Middle notes are pink tiger lily, Moroccan rose, and jasmine. And the base notes are benzoin, maple (!), vanilla, and styrax (which is kind of vanilla-incense-y).
The fragrance only required a small spritz and lasted for hours. And once dried down the maple not only sweetened the scent but was also a nice balance to the florals. Surprisingly, I felt exotic and sensual wearing Pleasures Intense.
Okay, maybe judging a perfume by its name isn’t the most helpful or practical route to go. But I did end up with two new perfumes that are never leaving my purse.
Now tell me, which fragrance makes you feel like the sexy queen you are?