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PWI: Rimmel London Burgundy Flirt, or, an interesting cheat; plus! L’Occitane Neroli

Well, I was going to do Rimmel London Burgundy Flirt. But… here’s the thing. I just did UO Spiked Punch, and they’re the absolute same. Really. Same creme/jelly* formula, same effort, same final color. The interim color was a bit different, but who cares? I had originally convinced myself that RL BF was a teeny bit browner, but, you know… it’s not. So, they’re BOTH going in the PWI bin.

I will not insult your intelligence with additional pictures.

So instead I will talk about perfume again! (wheee)

First, and important, there are two formulations of this, old and new. This is important because it is true of MANY perfumes (and some other cosmetics). This is because of either IFRA requirements (suuuuch a useless link) or EU requirements; basically, both have the same aim, which is eliminating perfume constituents that people are allergic to.

As a hopelessly pan-allergic creature myself, I love it. I never ever ever want my perfume to interfere with someone’s ability to breathe. (This is also part of why I favor low-sillage** perfumes.) But, a number of pre-existing perfumes had to be reformulated to comply with one or the other, and how much they changed is extremely variable.

So, L’Occitane Neroli (bitter orange blossom).

Some eBay seller. Thanks dude and/or lady!

I have a sample of this, and I have no idea when it’s from (I got it second-hand). My best guess is that it’s the original: exactly what’s shown above, a beautiful deep red. The newer versions seem lighter, plus I haven’t seen a new one in a little box-let. The internet suggests that the pre- and post-reformulations are moderately different. Also it … kind of smells allergenic?†

Review: y’all. I hate it.

I mean I can admire things about it! It has personality! It’s interesting and not the same as a million other perfumes! It has novel notes and dry-down! Just… they’re kind of a bad idea? (On me.)

It’s a very unisex smell, but not in a very soapy way; bitter orange is strong, and it’s backed by strong, strong cedar and spice (I get cloves and coriander). Sounds like it would be up my alley, but… it’s chokingly strong. Like, after 20 minutes of a fairly mild spray, I couldn’t take it anymore. Washing it off led to a lingering neroli/spicey/mildly soapy smell, tolerable… but not good.

This is someone’s perfect perfume. Go, someone! (You can have my sample.)

* I really need to get on a domain-jargon post
** reeeaaaallllyyyy 
Look, it sounds pretty hippy-dippy. But when you’ve been this allergic for this long, you actually start to be able to smell when certain things are a bad idea. I’m not crazy.

Also, perfumes? I guess that is a thing too?

So since I seem to have a blag in which I talk about the things in my life that have few outlets, I’m going to say stuff about perfumes! Why not?

The perfume my brother picked out for me ohhh let’s just say quite a long time ago is still wonderful. I wore it exclusively for many years (I’m not a “perfume wardrobe” kind of human). But, things change. I still think it’s wonderful, but it’s not a great reflection of my personality any more. I want to find a perfume that I’ll wear for the next  ten, twenty years. Which means I’ve gone from perfume monogamy to perfume dating? And there is NO good matching algorithm, let me tell you.

Mostly, what I’ve done about it is collect small samples that I rarely think to try, and then when I do try them, I immediately forget what I thought of them. So I guess this is a reasonable place to record them?

In that spirit, I recently (re)tried:

l l
Burberry Body, CB Russian Caravan Tea, CB In the Library. Uh… I’ll probably
never show a picture of a CB perfume again; they are all packaged EXACTLY the same.

Burberry: Body – This was very, very floral, and very, very unoriginal. One of the “yep, lotta perfume smells like that” ones. Also, it made both cats get up and leave?? So, no.

CB I hate perfume: In the Library – I quite liked the scent, which does smell book-collection-ish. But it turns out that (1) libraries smell partly of dust (ew), and (2) liking something and wanting to be that thing, it turns out, are different.

CB I hate perfume: Russian Caravan Tea – I remember really liking the smokiness to this, but as my little sample bottle aged, I feel like lemon became the predominant note. I maaay pick up another teeny decant, but I don’t think it’s got the characteristics I’m after.

On a side note, Christopher Brosius (the “CB”) is an interesting dude. He has a manifesto, because he is an artiste. Nonetheless, he targets specific smells (Tea Rose, Russian Caravan) and … sort of scenes, like Summer Kitchen and Greenbriar 1968. Others are more “inspired by”, like 7 Billion Hearts. Basically, I respect what he does? But the wear time is frequently very short, and they’re expensive.