Now Sampling: Parfums MDCI

I recently ordered a couple of Parfums MDCI samples from Luckyscent. I had tested Invasion Barbare from this brand ages ago and LOVED it. The price point has kept me away, but I admire Parfum MDCI’s aesthetic, particularly the flacons with the replica bust toppers. I wanted to revisit this house and, hey, there is no harm in sampling, right?

Vêpres Siciliennes

This opens with a yummy candied fruit note that almost reminds me of a Serge Lutens. Some heady white floral notes join in, and we’re off. This is a glorious floral composition that is not for the faint of heart. I always thought that my skin chemistry doesn’t get along with big florals, but I’m glad I tried this because it proves me wrong! This is a glorious jasmine, tuberose, orange blossom, and a touch of rose to deepen the floral heart. It’s sumptuous, decadent, and a little over the top. I like the fact that the composition feels balanced though. The citrus fruit notes add a hint of sour zest, which is unexpected, but works well. And there’s a textured musk in the base. Vêpres Siciliennes feels like a fruity/floral the way it should be done.

Pêche Cardinal

The name is a play on words, as it translates to Cardinal Sin, but pêche also means peach. And peach is undoubtedly the star note here. I find this composition very pretty and refined for something named Cardinal Sin. I would expect something a little more wild with a name like that. However, it makes sense when you think of this as a peach fragrance. There is also a milky coconut that melds perfectly with the creamy tuberose heart. There is a plum note to bolster the fruitiness, but peach remains the stand-out. This reminds me of Kilian’s Liaisons Dangereuses, also with a gorgeous peach note. I found that scent more sensual and truly carnal than Pêche Cardinal, which is interesting. Of course, it could just be my nose and my body chemistry. It’s all so subjective!

Turns out, there is some harm in sampling because it’s safe to say that I am head over heels for both of these scents! My tiny splash samples from Luckyscent are rapidly disappearing. I’m adding both to my full bottle want list. I will need to make room — both financially and physically in my collection — and finish a full bottle of something else first.

Both of these scents are well worth sniffing. They both come across as balanced and high quality compositions. They are very “I feel pretty” type of scents for when you’re in that kind of mood.

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I ordered both of my Parfums MDCI samples from Luckyscent.

The photo of my samples was taken by me.

Now Sampling: Sylvaine Delacourte

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I’ve been wanting to smell Sylvaine Delacourte’s creations for some time now. I debated ordering the sample discovery boxes offered directly on the house’s website over the holidays, but restrained myself. Ms. Delacourte has created two collections: the Vanilla Collection and the Musk Collection. There are five individual scents in each collection, with each of the five scents exploring a different facet of the two raw materials.

While browsing Indigo Perfumery one day, I noticed that they carry the brand, so I chose one each from the Vanilla and Musk collections to sample!

Vahina (Vanilla Collection)

This is a vanilla scent that I would describe as yummy, without being a gourmand. In addition to vanilla, Vahina features notes of tonka, orange blossom, and osmanthus. The osmanthus in particular adds a full-bodied texture to the composition. It’s almost as though I can reach out and touch this fragrance. And yet, it’s not heavy. It’s a light and pretty composition, and it’s effortless to wear. I could easily imagine almost anyone pulling this off. I’m not considering a full bottle of Vahina (I’m supposed to be on a full bottle low-buy!) but it’s a lovely fragrance to sample and sniff.

Dovana (Musk Collection)

With Dovana, I can tell these have been composed by the same perfumer. There is a similar delicate touch to both of these scents, with Dovana being the most delicate, almost fragile. Sylvaine Delacourte says she composed this to smell like a childhood soap that she loved. Indeed, Dovana is a fresh musk. There’s also a lovely iris note, which adds just a powder puff of texture to the composition. There is supposed to be some mandarin orange and neroli as well, but I don’t get much beyond a fresh musk and powdered iris. Dovana is breathtakingly pretty in its delicate nature. However, I find it too linear. Just to try something fun, I layered it over my Narciso For Her EDT today, and the result was perfect! This might be how I use up the rest of my sample.

Overall, I’m glad to have sampled these two from the house, and I can’t wait to sniff more! I’m particularly intrigued by the sound of Helicriss from the Musk Collection. What have you all sniffed and tested from Sylvaine Delacourte?

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I ordered my samples from Indigo Perfumery. The Sylvaine Delacourte Paris website offers discovery boxes of both collections.

I took the photo of my two samples.

 

Now Sampling: Hendley Perfumes

Hendley Perfumes is an independent, artisanal house based in Brooklyn. Hans Hendley is the perfumer. I actually learned of Hendley through instagram and was intrigued by some of the fragrance names I heard people mentioning. Here is what I’m sampling:

Amora: This is a very interesting jammy red berry mixed with rose. To my nose, it’s strawberry mingled with a wine-esque rose. It reminds me of a yummy summertime rosé. There is also a resinous note that adds some warmth. It all sits on a base of musk and ambergris that melds beautifully with the skin. Amora is a fun and unique fruity floral.

Blond: Surprisingly my favorite of the bunch! I was certain Amora would be the one for me, but Blond just spoke to me right from first spritz. It starts as a powdery orris that develops into a creamy and beautifully textured suede and sandalwood. It’s both smooth and a little spiky in just the right way. There is also a melon note in the composition that I don’t get on my skin, but I shall keep wearing and see! I’ll be purchasing this one, whether it’s the 9 ml travel size or a full bottle.

Rosenthal: This is a rose/patchouli very much in the vein of Portrait of a Lady. I get a camphorous medicinal scent in the opening before the rose really settles into the skin. If you’re a POAL fan, this might be one to check out, as the price point is a little more approachable than the typical Frederic Malle level. Again, this is available in a 9 ml travel size.

There are some shady brands on instagram and social media, who are only in it for the sponsorship and influencer opportunities. (Hello to those annoying skinny detox teas!) I suppose perfumery is not immune to this kind of behavior. Not everything you see on instagram is going to be amazing in person. However, Hendley Perfumes is the real deal. Hans seems very genuine about creating intriguing and high-quality scents.

As I said, I have my eye on Blond. I also want to sample Fume and Bourbon. Look out for a full post on Blond and more details on the other Hendley scents when I do another sample haul!

Have any of you tried Hendley? What are your thoughts?

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Samples are available directly from the Hendley website, which is where I purchased these three samples. Just as a heads up, it looks like Amora is currently out of stock. You can sign up for an email notification when it’s back in stock.

The photo was taken by me.