Just Charlie G

If you’re looking for Christmas Gifts that look beautiful, smell beautiful and don’t cost the world, then look no further than the beautiful gifts available from Yardley London.

The packaging for all of the gifts is sublime, I am in love with the artwork! And for such a quality brand, the prices are incredible for Crackers with a little Hand Cream in them for £4, up to about £20, none of the gifts on offer are going to break the bank.

This gift, the Mixed Body Spray Collection is my favourite and has my favourite packaging and retails at £9 for four 75ml Body Sprays.

Yardley GiftsIncluded in this set are English Lavender, English Rose, Lily of the Valley and English Bluebell Body Sprays, each beautifully designed and they’d look absolutely beautiful in a shabby chic bedroom!

This English Lavender Talc and Soap set costs just £9 and will make a beautiful gift, again, that packaging!

Yardley GiftThe English Lavender scent isn’t just a straight up Lavender, but rather it’s blended with bergamot, clary sage, wood, vanilla, patchouli amongst other beautiful scents such as violet and jasmine.  The result is a fresh light scent with a warm heart.

Finally the English Lavender Eau de Toilette & Body Lotion set costs a very reasonable £15, which considering the size of the products, is a great deal!

Yardley Gift

Yardley London have been in existence since 1770 and are still going strong and that is testament to the quality and popularity. English Lavender is the signature scent and it’s not hard to see why, it’s lovely, but its April Violets that’s calling my name, I absolutely LOVE the scent of violets!

If you’re still Christmas shopping, or having started yet, then do head over to Yardley London, there’s much more on offer than these three beautiful gifts, you’re sure to find something for someone!

*Products received free of charge for review purposes.

I treated myself to some new perfume with my birthday money recently. I was very good and instead of purchasing another variant of my beloved Angel,  I opted for something completely new. Viktor & Rolf Bonbon.

Viktor & Rolf BonBonI gave myself a spritz of this when I was in a store, and was so impressed to find I could still smell it hours later, and it was beautiful. Then when my very fussy husband commented on how nice I smelled, many hours later, it was a done deal and I headed back into town to buy myself a 30ml bottle.

The bottle itself is beautiful bow, I presume designed to look like a perfectly wrapped bonbon.

Viktor & Rolf BonBonThe heart of this fragrance is caramel, and so you can be sure this scent is extremely sweet. But it’s also warm. What I really get on application though is fruity. It’s light, sweet and bright, and as it dries down you get the beautiful caramel as well as warm sandalwood.

Don’t be fooled into thinking this is a candy scent for tweens, this is of course sweet, but it’s mature too, I’d say suitable for all ages. Perhaps its the warmth.

It lasts for hours and hours on my skin, overnight even, and draws compliments despite not being overpowering.

It’s just perfect.

The only downside is the price, 30ml is £50, but it’s so exquisite, and long wearing, it’s worth every penny.

Last week saw the launch of the newest Jo Malone London Collection, The Herb Garden. I absolutely LOVE Jo Malone London scents and these sound incredible so I thought I’d share some info about the collection as I know so many people are huge fans.

Jo Malone London Herb GardenThe collection contains five Colognes, each inspired by a day in the herb garden, and the descriptions of them all sound amazing!

Wild Strawberry & Parsley mingles the peppery bite of flat leaf parsley, the tang of tomato leaves with ripe blackcurrants and wild strawberries, there are also hints of leafy violet and moss.

Sorrel & Lemon Thyme. This scent is lemon zest with bigarade (I had to look this up but it’s bitter orange) and petitgrain and at it’s heart is sorrel, lemon thyme and rosemary. Also in the mix is geranium leaves and again, moss.

Nasturtium & Clover is clover and rocket with sparkling lemon, with nasturtium and jasmine at the core while the fragrance is grounded with vetiver.

Carrot Blossom & Fennel. This one sounds the most interesting to me, with just-ripe carrot and fresh fennel, while rose and orange flower water and iris add floral and earthy notes.

Finally, there’s Lavender & Coriander. A blend of English and French Lavender together with coriander, while sage adds depth and woodiness. Finally tonka bean adds warmth and balance.

I would LOVE to try all of these, they all sound incredible, especially for Spring, but Carrot Blossom & Fennel and Wild Strawberry & Parsley sound like they would be right up my street. I have learned with Jo Malone London scents though, that it’s often the ones I think I’ll like least that I end up loving the most.

Each Scent is £44 for a 30ml Cologne and they are available from Jo Malone London counters and online.

Angel is a polarising scent, people tend to either love it, or despise it, personally I have waxed lyrical about my love for Thierry Mugler’s Angel and its variants many times over the years and I am firmly in the love it camp. It is in fact the closest thing that I have to a signature scent, as even though I don’t wear it daily, I’ve not been without a bottle of one kind or other since about 1992. My relationship with Angel in fact pre-dates its UK launch, as I tramped from store to store asking blank-faced sales staff if they had it. None had even heard of it. Once it did land in the UK it met all my expectations and as I say, has been in my life ever since!

The newest offering from the Angel stable is the Angel Passion Star.

ANGEL Edition PassionActually the Passion Star is the original Angel Eau de Parfum in a new limited edition bottle, replacing the angelic blue with fiery, passionate red. I think it’s got “christmas present” written all over it, but also a great gift for collectors. The Angel bottles are always exquisite and highly collectable, this would be a must for any collection. It’s also refillable like many of the Angel bottles are.

Beautiful. I won’t review the scent here, but you can find my review of the Eau de Parfum, within my review of the Eau de Toilette version. I’m wearing Angel today and it is truly beautiful!

Angel Passion Star Launches on the 1st October 2015 and will be available from Mugler.co.uk

And you can find all my Angel related posts here.

Escentric 01 You may recall that I recently reviewed the fragrance Molecule 01 by Escentric Molecules. I have continued to wear it daily and I really love it.

I did however have a reader ask me if I had tried Escentric 01 by Escentric Molecules*, I hadn’t, but ever keen to please, here we are!

Escentric 01

 

Escentric 01 is the sister fragrance to Molecule 01. Where Molecule 01 is a single note, ISO E-Super, Escentric 01 is based around, but is not exclusively, ISO E-Super.  From my previous review you may recall that ISO E-Super (and therefore Molecule 01) is a woody, warm and clean scent. Escentric 01 smells very much like Molecule 01, the singular note of ISO E-Super is very evident but this is a more complex scent. Other notes include pink pepper, lime peel and orris incense.

Escentric 01It’s really lovely. Like Molecule 01, I think this is also a unisex fragrance. It’s rich and warm and woody, but the zesty-ness lifts it a little while the pink pepper adds a touch of spice. While it is more complex than its sister fragrance, it is still a simple clean scent and absolutely wearable.

With both fragrances in my possession, I’m struggling each day to choose which to wear, I love them both. I find Molecule 01 wears a longer on my skin, but that stuff is miraculous on me when it comes to wear time, I still get a day out of Escentric 01, with ease.

I’ve loved trying both of the scents out, and as I say, I can’t choose a favourite, but if you like a touch more than just wood, then Escentric 01 is the one for you.

I have the 30ml Refill bottle which is £30, but there is also a 100ml bottle available at £65.50 and a 30ml bottle with a case which is £39.50.

It’s available from Harvey Nichols and Liberty, and you can find more information on the Escentric website.

*Fragrance Received Free of Charge for Review Purposes

There’s a new Jo Malone London Cologne in town and while I haven’t tried it myself, I wanted to draw your attention to it as it sound gorgeous!

Meet Jo Malone London Mimosa & Cardamom.

jo malone mimosa cardamomI am sure I have smelled Mimosa but I can’t for the life of me conjure the scent to mind, I don’t even care!

“A new bohemia awaits. Mists of honeyed, golden mimosa float above the spiciness of freshly crushed cardamom. Creamy tonka and smooth sandalwood woven under powdery heliotrope and Damask rose picked at dawn. Warm, ethereal, mesmerising.”

While I may not be able to bring the scent of mimosa to mind, I LOVE cardamom, and who doesn’t like tonka and sandalwood? I’m also familiar with heliotrop and damask rose. This sounds like a dream.

Available now, as well as the 30ml and 100ml colognes (£42 and £85 respectively), the line also includes a Body & Handwash (£28), Body Creme (£50 – These have the most amazing consistency) and a Home Candle (£42).

If you’ve tried it, let me know what you think. Unfortunately there’s nowhere locally where I can try this out so I’ll either have to buy it blind or live vicariously through you!

Available from http://www.jomalone.co.uk/

Escentric Molecules Molecule 01Molecule 01 is based on a single aroma-chemical called Iso E Super, it’s an aroma chemical and it’s used in many modern fragrances to recreate scents such as jasmine and cedar. It’s a soft woody scent and the perfumer who created Molecule 01 decided it smelled beautiful on its own, not just as part of a fuller scent.  And Molecule 01 was born.

Escentric Molecules Molecule 01But don’t be mistaken, this isn’t a simple perfume, even if the scent is simple. In many reviews much is made of the fact that the wearer will stop being able to smell it on themselves after a period, but those around them will be able to, and indeed will be drawn to it.

Escentric Molecules Molecule 01Well I don’t agree with either of those, firstly I can smell it on me all the time, and secondly not one single damn person has chased me down the street or asked me what fragrance I’m wearing!

Its no bad thing though because I actually love this. On it’s own its a very simple smell. It is clean, sexy, strong but not overpowering and simple. You know how a few years ago us beauty bloggers were always looking for “my lips but better” lipstick? (do they still do that?) Well, Molecule 01 is a “my skin but better” fragrance. I’ve worn it constantly since receiving this refill bottle, and I can smell it on my coats and scarves. I also liked it on my husband, thanks to its deep, woody scent, its most definitely unisex, if anything perhaps a little more on the masculine side.

Escentric Molecules Molecule 01I personally, would say ignore the hype and novelty aspects of the marketing of this scent, and see it for what it is, a clean, beautiful scent. The single molecule aspect of it means that it would probably be ideal for layering also. I’ve just enjoyed wearing it alone so haven’t tried this, but I think it could really work on fragrances where you want to add a bit of depth.

Although this was a sample, I would absolutely buy a second bottle of this. I would quite happily make this my new signature scent.

There is also an accompanying perfume, Escentric 01. It is based on Iso E Super (65%) but also has notes of lime peel, hedione (green jasmine bud), orris, balsamic notes, and fresh musk. Sounds beautiful. I also note there’s are now Molecule 02 and Molecule 03 scents available.

I have the 30ml Refill bottle which is £30, but there is also a 100ml bottle available at £65.50 and a 30ml bottle with a case which is £39.50.

It’s available from Harvey Nichols and Liberty, and you can find more information on the Escentric website.

*Bottle received free of charge for review purposes.

 

I recently entered a competition on the Library of Fragrance Facebook page to suggest scents they could make for next Summer. I had the idea of a Pimms scent,  Lemonade, Pimms, cucumber, strawberries and touch of mint and I was thrilled to be picked as one of 25 winners.

My prize was a set of Library of Fragrance scents, all Summer Blossoms, Iris, Peony and Apple Blossom.

Library of FragranceIf you’ve read my blog before then you’ll know that I’m a huge fan of Library of Fragrance, and have been for many, many years (yes I am that old!) so you can pretty much assume from the outset that this is going to be a gushing, positive post!

Starting with Peony. I wasn’t aware of this, but Peony is the national flower of China. The first sniff is of a generic light floral scent, but as it dries down its beautiful. So feminine, slightly powdery, clean and beautiful. It’s not that light either, its quite strong, and yes, I love it!

Iris. Oh I love iris, the flowers are so beautiful. The scent of this one is very true to the Iris plant, its again feminine, powdery, smells a little bit like violets. I love this one too!

Saving my favourite for last though, Apple Blossom. Generally speaking I don’t love fruity smells, so I was hoping the scent would be more floral and it was. It’s a floral, similar in some ways to Iris and Peony, but the hint of apple fruit lifts it and it’s a gorgeous sweet and floral combination that works really well. It reminds me of something from my childhood but I’m struggling to put my finger on what it is, but its a really lovely scent.

What I love about Library of Fragrance is that there is something for everyone and the layering options are never ending. My absolute favourite is still Sunshine and I haven’t found anything it doesn’t go well with yet! There are over 300 scents to choose from and I’ve got a hefty wishlist.

It’s worth noting that some of these don’t last terribly long on the skin but they are colognes so I don’t expect them to last as long as an Eau de parfum, and the price means they are a more affordable option for reapplication throughout the day.

Peony and Apple Blossom are £15 each for 30ml and Iris is £9.99 in the sale section of the Library of Fragrance website. Head over and have a look, let me know which are your favourites as I’d love some recommendations!

You may remember my blog post not too long ago about the Fortune Cookie Soap (FCS) Spring subscription box, with a Wonderland theme. The whole point of the quarterly subscription boxes are to give you a taste of the major collections, so you can make informed choices when shopping the full line when it’s released. Of course, its a treat in itself, so if you are able to exercise good will power, maybe you can stop with just the box, but that’s just not my style. You may also remember my blog post about some purchases I made from the Game of Thrones themed collection, Winter Has Come. Well some of those items I adored so much I had to stock up, and some I was still keen to try, so I added a few to my order as well. So here’s what I ordered from the Fortune Cookie Soap Wonderland & winter Has come collections.

Fortune Cookie Soap Winter Has COme Wonderland

 

So I’ll give you a run down first of all of the Wonderland Items I ordered.

It is a huge collection with multiple scents, and for each scent there were multiple products. I was unable to order a fraction of what I would have liked, so chose to pick one scent and get a few products, and then perfume oils from the other scents.

Based on all the things I smelled and used from the Spring Box, I opted to buy Twisted Tea Party products, as it was my favourite scent. Green tea, sweet herbs, vanilla bean, cucumber, golden amber, neroli, geranium and spearmint.  Its unusual, it’s fresh and perfect for Spring, its just amazing. Here’s what I got:

Twisted Tea Party Body Wash ($10.99)

Fortune Cookie Soap twisted Tea party Body WashThe FCS Body Washes are brilliant, heavily scented and they lather a huge amount so you don’t need to use a lot of product.

Twisted Tea Party Whipped Cream ($10.99)

Fortune Cookie Soap Twisted Tea Party Whipped Cream

FCS Whipped Creams are pretty much a hero product, light and fluffy, heavily moisturising but without being greasy. In the relatively short time I’ve been buying FCS products, these have quickly become a favourite.

Twisted Tea Party Cuticle Butter ($8.95)

Fortune Cookie Soap Twisted tea Party Cuticle ButterFortune Cookie Soap Twisted tea Party Cuticle Butter 2 This isn’t my first Cuticle butter, I have one from the Christmas collection, they work incredibly well on my parched fingers. They are essentially a blend of beautiful butters, shea and mango, as well as some gorgeous oils, sweet almond, olive, coconut, avocado, amongst others. It feels really greasy as you apply but absorbs really fast, I don’t know how they do it but its a great product.

Finally I bought the Twisted Tea Party Perfume Oil, along with a few more….($5.99 for 1 dram, each).

Fortune Cookie Soap Perfume OilsThe Perfume Oils are my absolute favourite Fortune Cookie Soap product. Being oils, you need very little, just a dab, and the smell is both strong and long lasting. As well as the Twisted Tea Party scent I also bought Keep it in the Family from the Winter has Come collection (Burgundy roses, carnations, and white florals with nuances of burgundy wine, sandalwood, and a hint of musk). I already own this one but the collection is soon to be discontinued to make way for new collections and I adore this so I needed a back up, I also added It’s Only a Dream, Almost Alice and Who Are You? from the Wonderland collection, they are all very different, and they are not just different from each other, but they are not the sorts of scents you’ll find sold anywhere else, they are beautiful and unusual. It’s Only a Dream is Verbena, lemongrass, calla lily, citrus, leafy greens, ylang-ylang, rosewood, ozone and hints of rose and soft musk, Almost Alice is Fresh green snap peas, juicy pears, sweet pea flowers, freesia and ripe berries. Really fresh and floral, and finally, Who Are You? is Crisp ripe pear, limes, vanilla orchid and raw cane sugar. I’d very much like to get the Body Wash and Whipped Cream in the latter scent.

That was all I could manage to afford from the Wonderland collection at the time of ordering but I added these to my order from the Winter Has Come, Game of Thrones themed collection:

Unsullied Shower Oil ($12.99)

Fortune Cookie Soap Unsullied Shower oilA warm arid blend of patchouli, sandalwood, and citrus with juicy notes of white peach and red mango. You may have spotted I already own this. It’s now sold out and unlikely to be restocked. A crying shame, its the best body product I have ever tried in my life. The scent is to die for, it lasts on my skin for hours and hours, its quick and easy to use and moisturising without being greasy (once soaked in which happens quickly). A glorious product.

No Middle Ground Hydrate Me ($9.99)

Fortune Cookie Soap no Middle Ground Hydrate me

Hydrate Me’s are essentially solid, in-shower, moisturisers. I really like them, so easy to use, while you are still in the shower, under running water, before you get out, rub this all over (careful, you don’t need much and if you use it in a hot shower it will melt away quickly), massage in, and leave to sink into your skin as you dry. These do feel heavy on the skin until they are absorbed. I find it takes about ten minutes, as such these are deeply moisturising and amazing for dry skin. The scent of this bergamot, intoxicating gardenia, fresh eucalyptus leaves and lavender flowers wrapped in neroli, and tea leaves and I love it!

Needle Sugar Scrub ($13.99)

Fortune Cookie Soap Needle Sugar ScrubHerbaceous cilantro, tart lemons, and lush green base notes of fresh grass and green tea leaves. This smells DIVINE! FCS scrubs almost feel moussey, they are so light and fluffy, but they have a really good amount of scrub to them. I can’t bear scrubs that don’t leave me feelings scrubbed, you know the sort, a thick cream with a few jojoba beads dotted through it, this is full of sugar, moisturising oils and is gorgeous.

I also got a few freebies in my box, three 1oz Whipped Creams to try, from their Christmas collection. I feel very lucky 🙂

Fortune Cookie Soap Whipped Cream

Some of these products shown are now no longer available, but most things still are, but probably not for long as the Spring Collections are retired to make way for Summer, so if you’ve seen anything you fancy, don’t wait long!

Shipping to the UK is not cheap, not at all, but for a treat, I would highly recommend, the products are beautiful, original and feel very treat-like.

All the products above, except the three samples at the end were purchased myself from Fortune Cookie Soap.

 

Library of Fragrance Thunderstorm

You might remember my blog post about Library of Fragrance Colognes and my long term love of them!

The Fragrance Foundation People’s Choice awards are open for voting – and Library of Fragrance are nominated in both the female and male categories.

There are a few fragrances up for nomination, Baby Powder which is lovely,  (I really must do a post about it actually!) and Thunderstorm which I LOVE (you can read my thoughts if you follow the link above to my blog post), as well as Gin and Tonic and Snow. Have your say in deciding which fragrance should win this year’s coveted People’s Choice award.

What’s more, you could also win a £250 hamper of fragrance goodies from Boots.com as all those voting will be automatically entered into a draw. You can cast your votes for both the female and male category, HERE! I’ve voted and now I’m hoping for a grand prize!