Le perfume

I never really wore perfume until two years ago. I would not find anything I’d absolutely love. Everytime a friend or a blogger would talk about his/her favorite perfume, I would try it, and be systematically disappointed.

I remember once reading in the french Elle about a Paul Smith perfume. The article was so well written I thought, “that’s it, this is my perfume, this description is SO me”. The next day, I headed to Sephora. Needless to say, I did not like it. I really tried to find what the journalist described in the smell, but it just was not working for me. The funny thing is, I was so certain I would love it, I kept coming back to Sephora, to try it, give it time to develop, give myself time to love it, again and again and…

At first when I got the bottle, I’d spray it and it would smell a bit like cold rocks, you know like when you go visit a church in the winter.

It felt like this perfume was a secret I was not a part of. This somewhat anecdotic experience stopped my research for Le perfume. Then I discovered, can’t remember how which is silly, Ambre Fétiche by Annick Goutal, an emblematic perfumery french house.

fullsizeoutput_1df2

And, head over heels, fell in love. I got a little sample, and finally got the full size bottle for christmas a couple of years ago. Basically from october until april, I use it almost every single day. At first when I got the bottle, I’d spray it and it would smell a bit like cold rocks, you know like when you go visit a church in the winter. Then, with time, when the bottle is not brand new so I’d say a few days into it, it develops quickly into a warm amber enveloped in vanilla and smoke.

The Annick Goutal description is way better than mine if you want to check it out. It wraps itself around you in the best possible comforting way. I get compliments all the time which is nice, but what I absolutely adore is to re-wear a jumper on which I’d already sprayed perfume on : the smell is softer and becomes part of the fabric.

fullsizeoutput_1df0

I kind of wanted to find a new perfume this winter, because I’ve used two bottles of this one, but to be honest, when the owner of the shop I get it from told me that the “jus” (juice) of this perfume was fabulous, I felt so glad and, well, flattered…

I just got a new one again, because after all, it is my perfume.

A story about cleansing

When I was 17, (not a very good year despite what Sinatra says), I just would not do anything skincare-wise to my face. Then in my twenties, I’d wash it with a Dove Soap, the classic one – which to this day I find is the best smelling soap on earth – and tadam, that was moi done. 

We had body lotions, hair products, and skincare but to me it all looked the same.

For about 2 years, my step dad who’s a journalist, received tones of beauty products from pharmacy french skincare brands, aka the dream.

He’d come home and give it all to my mum and I, and we’d go through everything and share. It was fun, but I was not obsessed. Well, now that I think about it, I was intrigued and lost. It was nice to have free products, but I did not understand the purpose of that many creams. We had body stuff, hair products, and skincare but to me it all looked the same.

fullsizeoutput_1cb4

fullsizeoutput_1d6e

Skincare magic

I did try everything though… because I’d always been fascinated by the fact that, in a pot could be (or so I thought) a special formula that would change something on your face or body. It is kind of magical. But I’d use one product for one day, maybe two, and give up.

One day, my step dad contacted the PR company and told them to stop send all this free stuff. In fact, he first thought it was a one-shot PR delivery, it turned out it wasn’t, and he was not going to review it as it was not his journalism specialty at all, so it actually was useless for the PR company to keep sending all these goodies.

And to be honest, I just forgot about all these lovely products.

I’d never really talked about beauty with my mum or any of my friends. I even thought it was shallow and I was proud not to care about such superficial matter.

fullsizeoutput_1c86Garance Doré, Dove Soap & the rest is history

Then blogging came along. I discovered Garance Doré and with her, brands I’d never heard of like Kiehl’s.

I was completely obsessed with Garance, her clothes, the stories she would tell us… It felt like a new world was opening to me. 

In 2010, I was 21 at the time, had graduated from a Journalism Master, was freelancing a bit, but mainly was bored and scared about my career’s future, when I saw this article on Garance’s website.

“I had this secret that would make my skin feel clean and it was cheap and so freaking cool”, I thought.

She had done an interview with the french ELLE about her beauty routine. And the first product she mentioned was… the dove soap. She’d wash her face with it morning and evening to mattify her combination skin. OK. The Dove Soap. The one I could easily get my hands on at Monoprix or anywhere for that matter.

Needless to say I got it, and started to wash my face with it morning and night, and it just felt amazing you know. I was the closest I would ever be to being the most famous french blogger in NYC. “I had this secret that would make my skin feel clean and it was cheap and so freaking cool”, I thought.

Now when I think about it (I read Caroline Hirons religiously and double cleanse, and exfoliate and use serum and basically spend all my pocket money on beauty products), I’m horrified because I would NEVER use a soap to wash my face.

Still. My skin felt tight. But Beauty started to make me dream…