The Scented Hound

Perfume blog with abbreviated perfume reviews & fragrance reviews.


The Scented Hound’s 2015 Holiday Gift Guide

dog-with-christmas-gift-2015Once again ’tis the season for holiday magic.  But finding that magical gift can sometimes be rather difficult as there are so many wonderful items to choose from.  So here a few holiday offerings that are recommended by the Scented Hound…maybe just one of these will help you or Santa complete your holiday shopping wish list!



Roja Parfums Essence of Christmas candleThe best way to ease you into the holiday season is to enhance your surroundings with the festive scents of the season.  And add Roja Parfums to your holiday decorating and you’ll end up with a luxurious feast for the senses.  Fit for a king, the Roja Parfums Essence of Christmas candle incorporates fir balsam, fir needles, pine, guaiac and cedar woods which mingle with the gourmand delights of gingerbread, cinnamon, fenugreek, cocoa and toffee shot through with delicate heliotrope.  In addition, birch tar, leather and vetiver are added to create a smoky effect redolent of a roaring fire with tonka bean, making a perfect bed for a rich offering of precious frankincense – the original Christmas gift.

“For me, Christmas is the magical scent of majestic pine filling your home. It’s the excitement of festive treats – of ginger bread and cinnamon in abundance. It’s the crisp, fresh smell of winter air that, for a fleeting moment, clings to guests as you welcome them in from the cold. It’s the comforting warmth of a cosy log fire that makes us feel safe as it brings out the eternal child in us all.” – Roja Dove.

Available via the Roja Parfums website for 75 pounds.



Atelier Gift SetOne of the biggest issues in presenting perfume as a gift is that just because you might like a particular perfume, doesn’t mean the receiver of the gift will also.  And what might work with your body chemistry, may not work for someone else.  This year, Atelier Cologne has come up with a fantastic gift idea.  With a minimum amount of a $70, the Atelier Cologne Gift Card is enclosed in a signature keepsake metal box and is accompanied by 12 Colognes Absolues 1,2 ml (Mandarine Glaciale, Sud Magnolia, Figuier Ardent, Cèdre Atlas, Orange Sanguine, Cédrat Enivrant, Pomélo Paradis, Vanille Insensée, Rose Anonyme, Vétiver Fatal, Silver Iris, Santal Carmin).  This way the person receiving the gift card can sample and then pick out the perfect scent just for them.  Now you won’t have to worry about if your perfumed gift is going to sit on the shelf unused anymore.  What a fantastic gift idea!

Sample and gift card available via the Atelier Cologne website.



AVF Vanity Tray Clear Front PefumeI know that some people will argue that you’re not supposed to leave your perfumes out on display because of light and air degradation.  But if you’re like me, you don’t want to go digging through boxes and drawers to find the perfect perfume each and every day.  Yes, I do rotate my collection based on the season, but for the most part, I want my perfumes to be easily accessible and displayed in all their glory.  Perfume bottles can be art unto themselves.  Alexandra Von Furstenberg offers this beautiful acrylic vanity tray that is simple in its beauty and as such, doesn’t take away from the beauty of the bottles.  And what I love about the tray is that it comes in 3 colors; clear, bronze and black.  With these options, even the gents can display their perfumes in a setting with a touch of masculinity.  Trays come in varying sizes with prices starting at $180 at the Alexandra Von Furstenberg website.



61dKFLKyVRL._SY355_I think the hipster beard and moustache trend is beginning to fade, but that means it will continue to live on outside the realm of the big cities for some time to come.  What I have noted however, is that many of the men folk are not grooming and caring for their facial hair as they should be.  To me, there’s nothing more slovenly than an unkempt beard and moustache.  It’s an easy fix.  For $5.50 you can provide some help to tame the jungle with a beard and moustache comb.  It’s cheap, practical and much easier than renting a lawn mower to fix the tangled mess.  The Kent Beard and Moustache Comb is available via along with other Kent products as well as beauty products from perfumes to soaps for any person on your Christmas list.



kilian-scented-paper-weight_grandeBy Kilian keeps upping their game with new and extravagant scented products that fall outside the realm of traditional perfume.  The new Pearl Home Collection is infused with the fragrance, French Boudoir.

From the By Kilian website:

Kilian Pearl Tassel FRENCH BOUDOIR is an olfactory phantasm … the boudoirs of Ninon de l’Enclos, the Marquise de Montespan and La Castiglione. 

A majestic bouquet of tuberose, erotic and elegant, just like these big scandalous 18th and 19th century.

And unlike other companies, By Kilian scented products go beyond the traditional candles and/or home diffusers.  This new home collection does offer candles as part of the line, but they also offer a a scented paperweight, scented soaps and a perfumed tassel.  Strangely enough, they also offer a mother of pearl box of matches, but at $125 euros, I think I’ll stick to a standard box of matches to light my candles.  Check out the entire collection at the By Kilian website.



Discovery gift sets are the perfect way to introduce someone to a brand that they are not familiar with; or they are familiar with but would like to get to know better.  A good discovery set provides a perfumed amount that is large enough to give a wearer the ability to try to test the perfume more than just once or twice, but yet small enough so that if a perfume is not exactly to their liking, they’re not stuck with an unused 100 ml bottle.  The following discovery sets are a couple of favorites of mine:

L'A Parfumeur Gift SetL’Artisan Perfumeur Holiday Discovery Gift Set:  The set contains collectible 5ml bottles of the following classic scents: Caligna, La Chasse aux Papillons, L’eau d’Ambre Extrême, Mûre et Musc Extrême, Rose Privée, and Timbuktu.  And to boot, it comes in this wonderful presentation box.  The best part is that it’s only $55; which equals less than $10 for each of the perfumes.  You can’t beat this deal.  The L’Artisan Perfumeur Holiday Discovery Gift Set is available at Arielle Shoshanna and other fragrance retailers.

NVC DiscoveryNeela Vermeire Creations Discovery Coffret Set:  If you haven’t discovered the magic of Neela Vermeire Creations, this is the perfect way to find out why this perfume house has some of the most intriguingly unique and beautiful creations in the niche marketplace.  From the soft and subtle rose beauty of Mohur to the fantastically bright and full of energy Bombay Bling this coffret set allows you to travel to the mysterious east with just a quick spritz of perfume.  Each of the 4 perfumes, Mohur, Trayee, Bombay Bling and Ashoka are packaged in a box each filled with 8 ml per perfume.  You better act quickly though as each of these sets is sent from Paris and shipping ends on December 15, 2016.  The Neela Vermeire Creations Discovery Coffret set is 125 Euros and can be purchased via the e-boutique at the Neela Vermeire Creations website.



Aftelier CompactA couple of years ago I included this item on my holiday gift list.  I am doing so again because it truly is a perfect one of a kind unique and special perfumed gift.  Perfumer Mandy Aftel has resurrected these beautiful antique works of art and has infused her own perfumed art to make this one of a kind gift filled with a solid perfume of your choice.  Prices for each vary based on the particular container, but most vary from $240 on up.  Depending on the perfume chosen, additional charges may be incurred.

Of course, if a special compact is not your idea of the perfect gift, Aftelier Perfumes has an extensive selection of unique gifts from perfumes, to candles to fragranced organic teas as well as collection of Chef’s Essences and sprays which would be perfect for the foodie lovers in your life.  For more information on all the wonderful gift ideas at Aftelier Perfumes, check out Mandy’s website!



Joy AdSometimes getting a hold of an old classic vintage perfume isn’t enough for a perfumista.  If you have a favorite classic you may want to get your hands on anything from a large factice to vintage ads that you can frame.  I can’t attest to the integrity of each of the perfumed ads listed at this website, but what the site does offer is a centralized location to shop around for perfumed ads from yesteryear, most of which appear to be ads from magazines and other publications.  But if the price and quality are right, one could be just the perfect gift to frame for your special lover of all things perfume!  For more information click here.



Nordstrom AtomizerGreat as stocking stuffers, this is the perfect gift for all perfumistas on the go.  If you have ever had to leave a perfume bottle behind with the airport Transportation Security Agency because they confiscated it because it contained too much liquid, then you know how important it is to carry these handy travel atomizers.  Nordstrom offers these at an easy $6 per .5 oz. unit and they come in three very fun colors too (emerald, blue and gold)!  Available via the Nordstrom website.



My yearly gift list would not be complete without the inclusion of the fantastic Archie McPhee.  Archie McPhee carries the most irreverent gifts that are perfect for tickling even the most hard to buy for Scrooge on your gift giving list.  This year’s favorite from the extensive list for me would be the Crazy Cat Lady Action Figurine!

From the Archie McPhee website:

crazy_cat_lady_action_figure_1This 5-1/4″ tall hard vinyl figure comes with a dash of eccentricity and six cats you can pose around her. She has a seventh cat perched on her shoulder and an eighth cozily tucked inside the pocket of her bathrobe. The house-shaped package gives you a glimpse into her home and even features a quiz to help determine if you or someone you know might be a crazy cat lady. 

This “crazy” gift can be yours for the low-cost of $14.95 from the Archie McPhee website.  If cats aren’t your thing, there’s plenty of other wacky gifts that might be just what you’re looking for!

I hope you found some inspiration for some fun and fabulous gifts for this holiday season.  Happy shopping and Happy Holidays from The Scented Hound!


The Scented Hound’s 2014 Holiday Gift Guide

christmas dog

How is it possible that it is already December 1st and Christmas is less than a month away??!  If you’re like me, you have barely started to get your holiday shopping act together.  So to help you out, this list of nifty gifties might just help you ease into the shopping spirit.


As many of the perfume community know, Tama Blough, former editor at CaFleureBon is battling cancer.  The wonderful people within the fragrance community have come out with strong support in her time of need.  The first two items on this holiday list offer a fantastic product, at the same time proceeds will go to Tama to help her with this unfortunate struggle.  People coming together in support of others embodies the holiday spirit at its best!

To donate directly to the Tama Blough fund, click here.


San Francisco RosePerfumer Tanja Bochnig has created this limited edition rose beauty to celebrate Tama’s favorite flower, the rose.  100% of all proceeds will go directly to the fund to help Tama.  San Francisco Rose is a limited edition and only 200 will be sold.  I got mine and trust me, this rose is magnificent!

From the April Aromatics website:

San Francisco Rose is comprised of Rose Otto from Turkey, Rose absolute from Bulgaria, Orris Root from France, Hibiscus Seed from Ecuador, Tonka Bean from Brazil, Sandalwood from India, Patchouli from Sumatra and a touch of Oud from Saudia Arabia. Made in Berlin/ Germany with the purest, natural ingredients and the highest intention. It contains an essence from almost every part of the world.The perfume is infused with Herkimer diamond and Rose Quarz for its healing quality of feeling unconditional love.

San Francisco Rose 30ml Eau de Parfum, available for 111 Euros from the April Aromatics website.



love_5mlextrait2-720x720The PLP Project was conceived and imagined by “GoodSmella (and friend)’, Carlos J. Powell to commemorate the third anniversary of his Facebook fragrance group, Peace Love and Perfume. The PLP Project is an invitational compilation of unique fragrances created by artisan and indie perfumers based on this simple brief: “Peace: a meditative incense fragrance; Love: a sexy animalic fragrance; and Perfume: a traditional cologne with a twist on the concept.”

Dawn Horowitz blew the PLP concept out of the park with her contribution of this project.  All three interpretations are amazing and incredibly unique:

From DSH Perfumes:

peace_5mlextrait2DSH Peace is my meditative incense design that bridges East and West, incorporating notions of what “incense” means from a Japanese, Arabic, and a Monastic / Western perspective. Peace also allowed me to use some rather unusual materials in the construction such as Bakul attar, Choya Ral, and Laotian Oud. Of course, at the heart there is the traditional Frankincense and Myrrh resin accord layered with rich Rose de Mai and Orris. For the top note I looked eastward to the aromatic Champaca Leaf. The result is like something familiar, warm, and comforting mixed with a sense of wonder at what you are actually smelling.

For DSH Love I let my imagination go to a time and place when animalic perfumes reigned supreme: the early to mid-20th Century. Of course, I included all four of the traditional animal notes: musk, civet, ambergris, and castoreum with added elements of botanical “animalics”, ambrette co2 and labdanum with a large dose of a rather new material, hyracium tincture (aka African Stone). The heart is filled with indolic juhi jasmine, orange flower absolute, and gardenia balanced by a slightly sharp and spicy white pepper and aldehyde top note. The result is a lush, provocative, and thoroughly sexy perfume.

Lastly, DSH Perfume is a rather unorthodox pairing of grapefruit, rhubarb, and cognac accented by a luscious tropical fruit accord with green notes of basil and pittosporum to create the “fresh cologne” aspect . A vibrant jasmine heart dries down to a surprisingly creamy ambrette, guaiacwood, and vetiver finish. This is definitely a modern twist on the ‘eau de cologne’ design concept.

I have to say that Love is probably my favorite as it’s just so animalic and brutally sexy that when I wear it I just can’t stop sniffing myself!

The DSH Perfumes PLP fragrances are all limited editions:  Limited Edition Extrait flacons (5 ml Antique presentations) of Peace and Love ($105 each); Perfume as a Limited Edition of 50, 10 ml spray flacons in Cologne Absolue strength ($48).  There is also Discovery Sample Set available for $36.  In addition, 15% of all sales of the PLP Project perfumes will go directly to the Tama Blough fund.  To purchase one or all of the fragrances, go to the DSH Perfumes website.




Kilian Hennessey knows perfume and knows how to package his fragrances like no other.  The exquisite bottles and cases which are a trademark of the brand now have some lovely cousins as part of the family.  The By Kilian jewelry collection is impeccable.  I saw up close at Sniffapalooza both the necklaces and bracelets and they are not only beautiful but scented with your choice of the By Kilian line (the bracelets are infused with two fragrances created just for them!)

These products, which start at $195 are an excellent way to glam up your holiday wardrobe.  You can purchase them on the by Kilian website or at fine retailers.



Womens-Sampler Gift SetWe all love gift sets because it’s like having many presents all in one.  Twisted Lily offers many gift sets, but they have combined several various sets in order to make up their Ultimate Gift Sets, one for women and one for men.

The women’s collection is made up of:  Arquiste Florals Gift Set 4 x 5ml, 2014 Ladies Mini Collection by Penhaligon’s 5 x5 ml and the Amouage Women’s Sampler 12 x2 ml.  Available for $185.

The men’s collection is made up of:  Arquiste Citrus & Woods Gift Set 5 x 5ml, 2014 Mens Mini Collection by Penhaligon’s 5 x 5ml and the Amouage Men’s Sampler 12 x2 ml.  Available for $190.

Check out these ultimate gift sets as well as all of their other gift sets and fragrant goodies available at Twisted Lily.



Claus Porto SoapThese make the perfect gift for those who love luxurious and long-lasting quality soaps.  Founded in 1887, this Portuguese brand has been creating incredible artisanal soaps that are a testament to their rich and long heritage.  In addition to the quality of the product, the packaging is a work of art in itself.  Some of the offerings include Banho, comprised of citrus and verbena and Favorita a red poppy delight.

Gift sets of three hand soaps can run around $36 and single bath bar sizes can run around $15 each.  An internet search can help you find the best prices and shipping options based on your location.



Voluspa 2014I love candles and the ambiance they can create.  This new offering from Voluspa helps to brighten the holiday cheer with a collection of three fragrant offerings in the most beautiful of packaging:

– Visions of Sugar Plum: filled with notes of tart white plum, dried cherry dusted with powdered sugar, toasted hazelnut and lemon zest.

– Cinnamon Ceylon and Copal: a blend of Ceylon cinnamon and cassia with golden copal resin and amber.

– Spruce Cuttings: filled with the scent of royal Colorado blue spruce cuttings freshly snapped and trimmed for a fragrant garland.

Each is 3 ounces in size.  You can find the gift set for around $50 at Nordstrom and other fine retailers.  Other sizes and individual candles from the collection are also available.



editions_limitees_nuit_de_noel_pillowAs far as I’m concerned, my Christmas holiday wouldn’t be complete without the wearing of Caron’s classic, Nuit de Noel.  Created in 1922 by Ernest Daltroff, this perfume highlighted by notes of ylang-ylang, tincture of rose and jasmine, sandalwood, oak moss, musk and amber is like the most comfortable sweater to be worn all throughout the season.

You can read my full review of the parfum extrait version by clicking here.

For a very special present, Caron is offering a limited edition Nuit de Noel Pillow.  Nestled in a pillow of Limoges porcelain, is a 28 ml bottle of Nuit de Noël extract, adorned with a gold thread.  The Caron Nuit de Noel pillow is a limited edition of 1000 pieces, this beauty is 400 Euros from the Caron Paris website.



The Essence of Perfume is the most informative and richly beautiful book that I have experienced in a long time and would be the perfect gift for any perfumista, bar none.

From the book’s press release:

The Chypre Family

The Chypre Family

The Essence Of Perfume by Roja Dove is the Master Perfumer’s definitive guide, offering a rare glimpse into the knowledge, passion, and creativity of a Master Perfumer. Since it was first launched, The Essence Of Perfume has become the benchmark text for perfumery worldwide, and is an indispensable industry reference for many professional fragrance organisations.

Roja Dove takes us on his own personal journey of scent, from his transformative childhood  memories, to the creation of Roja Parfums; revealing scandals of the fragrance  world printed here for the first time. Dove explains why it is essential to look to the  past in order to create the future, asking ‘What Next’? If Dove’s prediction is correct, perfumery is about to change forever.

P265L_Group of BottlesDue to unprecedented global demand following the sell out first book, this new  edition features additional sections about the inspirations behind Roja Dove’s creations; new methods of extraction; a comprehensive list of the exotic raw materials of perfumery; and never seen before fragrance bottles. Highlighting classic male fragrances, this new book is one of the first to celebrate men’s perfumery in its own right.

You can purchase the book via for $26.53.  This is a bargain for such a lavish book and the hard copy is a must as you’ll want to be able to get the full effect of all of the book’s incredible visuals.



Michell Obama Blue QEven though this is a perfume blog, not all gifts and presents need to be fragrance centric.  Blue Q offers some off-the-wall products that are fun and not all that expensive.  One thing you’ll find is that they have a collection of artful shopping bags that will help make your grocery shopping all that much more fun.

I love the Mighty Michelle Shopper that illustrates Michelle Obama as the “First Lady of Fabulous!”  A fun way to shop and only $11.99 too boot.

Check out all of the fun and interesting items on the Blue Q website.



worlds_best_cat_trophy_1_1My list of recommendations would not be complete without my favorite go-to store for those all-important stocking stuffers.  Archie McPhee has a collection of the most fun and irreverent offerings that can make anyone in your household smile.  They even have something for those furry kids, like the World’s Best Cat statue.  Does your four-legged friend deserve one of these prizes this year?

You can get Fluffy his very own trophy for only $9.95.  Check out all the good fun on the Archie McPhee website.

I hope you find at least one item on this list that will make a loved one happy.  The Scented Hound wishes you “happy shopping!”


New Release: The by Kilian Addictive State of Mind Collection

by Kilian Addictive State of Mind

INTOXICATED – WHAT I SMELL:  Intoxicated opens with a boozy burnt coffee note that is sweet, yet flattened.  It feels like it’s been sprinkled with dry nutmeg and it has a rather marshmallow thickness consistency about it.  It makes me want to fire up my espresso machine, because this would make for a nice after dinner drink to go with a hot cup of coffee.  As Intoxicated starts to develop, it becomes a bit nuttier, richer and it begins to rise and jump off the skin, growing with projection each minute.  There’s a nice herbal quality that rests like a haze on top the layered fragrance and a bit of sweet and light caramel emerges giving it more dimension.  As time progresses, the light booziness retreats, but the roasted coffee and nuttiness remains.  After around a half and hour, a light vetiver appears, bringing just a bit of sharpness into the mix.  As it keeps developing, it turns from the gourmand to a more woody creation.  But the great thing about the by Kilian fragrances is that they are so supremely finished and silky smooth so that the different variations in the fragrance make the notes hard to define and pin down.

Intoxicated Notes:  cardamom, nutmeg, cinnamon, coffee

Gourmet S'more

Gourmet S’mores

WHAT IT SMELLS LIKE TO ME:  The most luxurious S’more with a lightly sweet refined cocoa’d chocolate with the finest of graham crackers.  And when you’ve finished eating the lovely concoction, the warm, sweet and fired remains of the treat linger in the air.


  • Bone Rating: 4.5 out of possible 5 bones
  • Scent: Aromatic Spicy
  • Nose:   Calice Becker
  • Classification: Unisex

LIGHT MY FIRE – WHAT I SMELL:  Light My Fire opens with this dry hay like tobacco and honey.  Quickly, a cumin notes comes in along with the patchouli.  It’s dry and a bit sour.  The honey isn’t thick, but more like a dried and crackled glaze over the hay.  It’s rather comforting to me, as it’s a bit dusty too…as if the perfume has been stored in an old barn.  Along with the honey, there seems to creep out a bit of a brown sugar note.  There’s a tender sweetness about the fragrance that’s very muted which I find quite nice and heart-warming.   After around 10 minutes, a putty note appears giving Light My Fire a bit of thickness.  At this point, the initial hay that brought in the dryness begins to be filled instead with a more woody note which isn’t quite as devoid of moisture, but it’s still rather dry.  Light My Fire doesn’t transform all that much, but it’s such a nice and relaxing fragrance, the kind that’s good for soothing one’s soul.  Don’t get me wrong though, as relaxing as this is, there is still some power and projection behind it.

Light My Fire Notes:  cumin, hay, patchouli, vetiver, honey, vanilla and tobacco


Late Day, Late Summer – Jan Schmuckal

WHAT IT SMELLS LIKE TO ME:  A late summer day, where the ground is rather dry as you lay under a big tree while the sun streams all around you.

THREE ADJECTIVES THAT DESCRIBE LIGHT MY FIRE:  peaceful, contented, contemplative

  • Bone Rating: 4 out of possible 5 bones
  • Scent: Oriental Woody
  • Nose:  Sidonie Lancesseur
  • Classification: Unisex

SMOKE FOR THE SOUL – WHAT I SMELL:  Smoke for the Soul opens big with this warmed eucalyptus topped by a nutty tobacco.  It’s quite thick and a bit chewy and somewhat burnt around the edges.  After a bit, it begins to dry and it becomes more burnt, like the sticks of wood are actually firing up on your skin.  A birch note begins to appear almost as if the already flaky bark is falling off of the perfume exposing a more sharpened cannabis note that’s quite pungent and sour.  The fragrance then dries out and becomes pure wood.  However, the wood continues its slow burn with a slight smoky and sharp finish sitting above a vetiver base.

Smoke for the Soul Notes:  eucalyptus, grapefruit, tobacco, mate, birch, cashmirwood, cannabis and cardamom

Burnt Twigs

burnt twigs



  • Bone Rating: 3 out of possible 5 bones
  • Scent:  Woody Aromatic
  • Nose:  Fabrice Pellegrin
  • Classification: Unisex


BOTTOM LINE:  With the by Kilian name, you’re getting luxury not only in a scent, but also in the packaging.  This new collection is no exception as each perfume comes in a case designed to look like a luxurious cigar holder.  Intoxicated and Light my Fire are really smooth, refined and perfectly finished and live up to the by Kilian brand.  Smoke for the Soul plays “which one of these is not like the others” with the other two.  It’s nice, but it just doesn’t feel like it fits into the mix.  In any case, overall, a very nice collection.

  • Expense: $270 for 50ml Eau de Parfum (each sold separately)