The Scented Hound

Perfume blog with abbreviated perfume reviews & fragrance reviews.


Ramblings for a Monday Morning

blah-blah-blahI finally had a chance to sit down and get a little writing in.  It’s been so busy with work that any random thoughts and ideas seem to be rattling around loose in my brain.  But things are actually quieting down nicely and we had a nice quiet Easter Sunday and I managed to eat a ton of candy and Easter ham and all the fixins!

OK… I told you this would be a bit rambling…

I was putting on some perfume for work the other day and as I was digging through my what I believe to be minimal collection, I started thinking about Spring and that I could once again start wearing some more warmer weather fragrances (or puchase some :)).  But in looking at my perfumes, I noted that there were a few this winter that I barely touched but once or twice.  But last year, I wore these same fragrances multiple times per week (Serge Luten’s Ambre Sultan for instance).  I started wondering if my tastes were changing or if my interest in perfume was dominated by the thrill of the chase in purchasing new perfume rather than for the pure love of the fragrance.  And then I thought with the increasing size of my collection, how many of those old loves will never ever see the light of day?  Or, will next winter become once again, the winter of Ambre Sultan?  Is anyone else this fickle in their perfume loves?

Rambling on…

YsastisThanks to the wonderful Kafkaesque I am now hooked on vintage Ysatis by Givenchy.  She graciously included a sample of vintage EdT which I emptied in quick time.  Thankfully, this is not hard to find on eBay and I recently purchased 2 5ml pure parfum minis for a song.  As much as I loved the EdT, I love the  pure parfum even more as the floral aspects are tinged greater with the animalic civet.  It’s a beauty that is extremely loud and feminine but I don’t care.  I am wallowing in it’s loveliness as I write this!  The following is the description from Fragrantica:

Magical floral fragrance. Ysatis woman is smart, emotional and distinct. Elegant bottle matches the opulent fragrance that smells like luxury. The top notes are citrus, ylang-ylang, galbanum, coconut, rose wood, and aldehydes. The heart notes are jasmine, rose, iris, tuberose and narcissus. The base notes are musk, amber, vanilla, vetiver, patchouli, sandal wood and civet. The fragrance was created by Dominique Ropion in 1984.


I recently reviewed the wonderful Haute Claire Parfum by Aftelier Perfumes giving it a 5 bone rating.   Mandy Aftel graciously sent me the EdP version of Haute Claire and I can easily say that it too is a star.  Of course, being an EdP vs. a Parfum concentration means that it’s a little lighter but the overall essence is the same.  However, strangely with the EdP I almost get a light cocoa vibe as well.  Maybe I’m just smelling all the Easter chocolate in the house?

and finally…

Did anyone else sign up for the Olfactif sample program?  The first month was free and I have no idea what to expect.  I did receive an email the other day stating that my package had been shipped.  No doubt, more to come on this soon.

Happy Monday all!


Haute Claire by Aftelier Perfumes



About a month ago, I was lucky enough to be the winner of a Mandy Aftel of Aftelier Perfumes drawing.  This was a real thrill as I have not really delved into the realm of natural perfumes and after hearing Freddie from Smellythoughts rave about the Aftelier fragrances I knew that I would be in for a lovely surprise.  As part of the drawing I was able to choose 3 miniature perfumes from Mandy’s collection.  Based on notes that I love and review of others, I decided upon Wild Roses, Secret Garden and my favorite of the three which I’m reviewing today, Haute Claire.  Of course, Mandy couldn’t have been sweeter and actually sent me a few more samples along with the minis.  My package arrived in the most exquisite box and the 3 perfumes were housed in these sweetly small bottles in their own little carrying case.  As wonderful as the juice always is, the packaging just adds that something extra that makes it so much more special.  Mandy obviously understands this to perfection!  Now, these fragrances are masterful in their composition and you can immediately tell that they are blended perfectly and my nose is not sophisticated enough to really give the justice due with words, so please bear with me.

WHAT I SMELL:  In the bottle it smells strong and biting and dare I must say, a little musty (galbanum?).  Once you apply it, that strong and musty opening makes way for an orange and ylang ylang intoxicating delight.  It somehow is fresh and cool and warm at the same time.  It is substantial in that there is a depth, an almost layering of various notes that seem to rise and sink back each time I put my arm to my nose.  I have always thought of natural perfumes in the sense of earthy and oily.  This breaks that  thought in that it is like a 1200 count egyptian cotton sheet;  substantial, smooth and ultra luxurious.  Haute Claire is thick and ripe and the honeysuckle sticks to the back of your throat.  It’s not sweet, but it’s pungent with a thick and palatable consistency.  I love to be intoxicated by a perfume and this does the trick in spades.  After quite some time in the end you are left with a wonderful warm green vetiver fragrance.  The vetiver is deep and luxurious and this is coming from a man who typically doesn’t care for vetiver scents.

From the Aftelier website:

Haute Claire is both crisp and soft, cool and warm. The fresh edgy greenness of galbanum is offset by the creamy floral of ylang ylang edged with honeysuckle. The green and floral notes harmonize in perfect pitch, with neither dominating the other. A warm base of vetiver and vanilla provides a soft finish of sweet grass.

Top: galbanum, Mexican lime, wild sweet orange, ylang ylang co2.
Heart: honeysuckle absolute, ylang ylang extra, clary sage.
Base: vetiver, ethyl phenyl acetate, vanilla absolute.

mother earthWHAT IT SMELLS LIKE TO ME:  The perfume that I believe Mother Nature herself would be wearing as her signature scent.

THREE ADJECTIVES THAT DESCRIBE  HAUTE CLAIRE:  intoxicating, rapturous, wise (you can tell that Haute Claire was composed with a great deal of experience, knowledge and wisdom)

WHAT OTHERS ARE SAYING ABOUT HAUTE CLAIRE:  smellythoughts, EauMG, This Blog Really Stinks

BOTTOM LINE:  This was a wonderful surprise for me.  I can’t thank Mandy enough for the opportunity to experience her artistry.  I am thinking at this point that a mini of Haute Claire will not suffice.  Thankfully, Mandy has 30ml EdP bottles for sale too!!!  Please do check her website and all the wonderful fragrances and other products at

  • Bone Rating: 5 out of 5 possible bones
  • Scent: Green
  • Nose:  Mandy Aftel
  • Classification: Unisex
  • Expense: $50 as tested, 2ml perfume