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Bombay Duck London

April 21, 2011 | Yardley Lily of the Valley

The Scent Critic has recently been too frantic to stop and smell the roses.  (Hence the lack of postings.)  To be honest, I was beginning to get worried.  On a crazy-busy book tour, criss-crossing the UK, I did take with me a selection of fragrances in my suitcase, in the hope of writing about them.  [...]

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January 11, 2011 | Sahara (make: unknown)

The Scent Critic is not seriously going to suggest that you trek all the way to Tunisia to pick up a bottle of Sahara, weaving your way through the labyrinth of Sousse’s souk.  (This small bottle:  3.5 dinars, or around £1.75, FYI.)  For sure, this scent is never going to rival Chanel No. 5.  But [...]

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December 12, 2010 | The 12 Scents of Christmas No. 7: Hermes 24 Faubourg

I suspect that if you blindfolded 1,000 people, wafted a 24, Faubourg-drenched spill under their noses and asked them to tell you where this honeyed floral fusion hailed from, they’d chorus:  ‘Paris’.  This 1995 classic, to me, has always seemed one of the quintessential French perfumes:  a sophisticated, heel-clicking, smart-suited grande dame of a fragrance, [...]

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July 12, 2010 | Laura Mercier Ambre Passion

‘I want to eat that’.  Not often that a fragrance elicits a comment like that from someone who strays within sniffing distance.  The Scent Critic isn’t surprised, though:  the whole Laura Mercier bath and body collection was originally inspired by foodie Laura’s passion for All Things Edible, and within her portfolio of eaux de toilettes [...]

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May 16, 2010 | Eau de Shalimar

Applying Shalimar to your pulse-points is something of a rite of passage.  Do it when you’re too young, and it’s the equivalent of trying on your mother’s too-big shoes, or smooshing her red lipstick inexpertly around your pout.  The original, legendary Shalimar fragrance is a by-word for sensuality:  created in 1925 by Jacques Guerlain, it [...]

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