Now Sampling: DSH Perfumes


I’ve been wanting to try Dawn Spencer Hurwitz’s gorgeous line of artisanal perfumes for a long time. The only problem was, where to start? She has so many to choose from, it’s overwhelming! Luckily, she releases holiday fragrances every year for the festive season. These holiday-themed scents sounded like a good way to start exploring the brand so, for December, I decided to pick out two of her holiday scents from previous years.

Châtaignes du Bois: This is the smell of roasted chestnuts, sugared and slightly burnt, too. It took me back to college, when my freshman year roommates and I would take the train into New York City on the weekends. Just outside of Grand Central, we could smell the roasted chestnuts from the various carts trying to attract tourists. Finally, one day, we gave in and bought some. They tasted good, but the taste couldn’t live up to that smell, which was even better. This is the scent of Châtaignes du Bois, which is purely yummy and nostaglic for me. Unfortunately, it’s extremely short-lived on my skin, but that’s to be expected from naturals.

Lumière: This is a coffee-centric fragrance, which immediately makes me happy. One of my favorites is Bond’s New Haarlem, which is a coffee scent, but also very sweet with a strong maple syrup note. I expected Lumière to also be sweet, but it’s dark and spicy. It’s like cinnamon-laced coffee and booze with a dollop of whipped cream on top. It’s decadent, yet balanced. I also get better longevity with this one at 5 hours. I’m still searching for my holy grail coffee scent, but Lumière is a contender for a larger bottle purchase.

I also have two small samples of Au Lait (creamy milk) and Tonic (as Dawn describes, it’s like “ginger ale for the soul.”). I think I chose a good entry point into DSH Perfumes. I’m excited to discover more from here and find my favorite DSH creation.


I ordered my samples directly from the DSH website. I highly recommend browsing around her site — you can lose hours just clicking on all the fragrance descriptions!

Photo taken by me.

7 thoughts on “Now Sampling: DSH Perfumes

  1. Ha! I remember the smell of chestnuts sold by the street vendors! For me it was walking to the train station at night after ballet class on Broadway in Manhattan along with the smell of Christmas trees that were also sold on the street…chestnuts and evergreen…the scent of my days growing up in the city (and now I am curious as to where you went to college 😉 ). I tried Chataignes last year from a sample sent to me by a perfume friend. Lumiere sounds equally as beautiful as I always love a good coffee note…I enjoy New Haarlem as well. Au Lait has been on my radar for a while as I am looking for a replacement for Jo Malone Sweet Milk. I tried and used up a travel spray of Formula X. and I also had a travel of Pandora but had to give that one away as it was just too potent for those near and dear to me so I sent it off to a loving home. My other favorite is Ashram for its usage of champaca which is a note i am looking to explore. DSH really does have some beautiful scents. I will enjoy reading your reviews if you get your hands on some more of DSH.

    Happy New Year Caitlin!!!

    1. Yumm, chestnuts & evergreen! What a perfect festive combination.

      I went to Sarah Lawrence, so it was really fun to take the Metro North into the city on the weekends.

      Au Lait is also lovely but it’s not one I would wear on its own. I like layering it with Lumière.

      I will look up Ashram! I also love champaca as a note.

      Happy New Year to you as well! I hope you’ve been having a lovely holiday week!

      1. That’s a quick and easy train ride so I bet trips into the city were frequent! I am much further north so it takes me much longer on the Metro North to get into the city.

        I will be curious as to what you think of Ashram if and when you get to try it.

        1. It was honestly such a nice train ride! We were very lucky. And I could retreat back to the Sarah Lawrence bubble when the city got too overwhelming/expensive. 😄

          I have to plan my next round of DSH samples! Ashram will definitely be part of it.

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