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This one is just right

I’ve been meeting a lot of people much younger than I recently who have the motto “Go big or go home.” I have to say, this is not my motto. You might find this hard to believe from a girl who’s always “More more more!”, but it’s true. I do not want my husband to buy the Costco size pack of paper towels; we have no room for it. I do not want 100 ml bottles of perfume I will never use up. And I do not always want to wear Poison (despite my massive wrong love for Poison). Sometimes I want something that is not too big. Sometimes I want something that is just right.

Especially in these summer days of triple digit heat, something that is the Right Size for this weather is not trivial. I like cologne-ish type fragrances, but only -ish; things that are really just citrusy and then gone in an hour make me grumpy.

What I’m wearing in this hot weather:

Lubin Gin Fizz. I know online reviews sometimes are “meh” about this, but I find it delightfully fizzy, and drying down to a sufficiently buoyant chilled glass type of scent. It’s not iris chilly, I don’t often care for iris; it’s not a knife edge; it’s just a gently cooled surface. Yes, there’s a touch of clean musk here; if that’s not your thing, then run away. But for those of you who secretly do believe that the laundry detergent smells good, you’ll probably find the far drydown of this to be just pleasantly fresh in this muggy hot weather, not oppressive.

I’ve also, after three years of planning, acquired a bottle of Laila. It is not expensive and not that hard to find, either; it was always on my “I’ll get this some bad day when I need a pick-me-up” list. I didn’t have that bad a day, you’ll be glad to know, but I did finally say “It’s hot and I want to wear Laila.” Laila originally was sold only at Disneyworld, as “The Essence of Norway” (who is squeezing Norway into bottles?) but it’s now a little more widely available. It’s light and fresh but still a bit different from anything else, as far as I can tell; I’ve never sniffed anything else and thought “That smells like Laila”. It’s not boring, is what I’m saying, though it’s extremely low maintenance.

It has melon and cool flowers notes that are a little “Heidi in the meadow”-ish. It’s lovely. If you’re picturing a horrible celebuscent when I say melon and cool flowers, then you’re wrong. You can smell this at Nordstrom, and smelling it is wise before you buy. But if a cool spring floral isn’t something you might normally wear, but all your ambers and incense are just TOO furry for global warming, I highly recommend giving this a sniff. It is surprisingly good quality for the price. Like Gin Fizz, the longevity is surprisingly nice, too, staying with you for a little lift throughout the day, or at least the morning.

As a final option, let me confess my weakness for Marc Jacobs splashes. Yes, they all dry down to the same floral musk; yes, they’re overpriced. But if you get them on clearance at TJ Maxx (I always do) they’re a fun summer scent that doesn’t blow up and become a massive cloud of horror, and is fun to spritz on right out of the shower. I don’t keep any scents in the fridge, but if I did, it would be one of these massive glass 10-ounce bottles of MJ splash. I recently acquired the Ginger one, and it applies for all the world like a refreshing spritz of ginger ale (but without the stickiness!). When I’m tired of floral or citrus, ginger is a nice not-quite-herbal change!

Whew, I hope you’re staying cool and doing something fun, memorable and relaxing for the Fourth of July (especially if you’re American, snort). Feel free to drop me some hints about what you wear for July!


Image is Goldiebot and the Three Bears, by Jenn and Tony Bot. Used under Creative Commons license, via Flickr; some rights reserved.

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4 comments to This one is just right

  • Happy 4th of July to you!

    It’s still nice and cool where I live so I had no need for a specific summer perfumes. But when I need one, I go for one of my Jo Malone’s colognes – Assam & Grapefruit, Earl Grey & Cucumber or White Lilac & Rhubarb.

    • Judith

      I am kicking myself for not buying more of the tea fragrances when Jo Malone came out with them; on the other hand, I have like 8 Jo Malones and seldom wear them. The White Jasmine & Mint, however, DID get some wear this last week (it is NOT cool here!), and the basil one might be next up! (I really should have bought the earl grey & cucumber, and the sweet milk. Do you know how much Sweet Milk is going for on eBay???)

  • basia

    Very hot here in MI! Clean musk and melon make me run away but your reviews are so well written I’m almost convinced!
    The MJ Ginger I could wear! I just try to stay in the air conditioning and wear my usual faves!

    • Judith

      I should have said that the “melon” in Laila is watermelon, not bath & beauty works chemical melon. It’s really lovely; I’d suggest giving it a sniff.

      I am using the air conditioning profligately, extravagantly. Usually we are restrained with it, as we don’t wish to contribute to the end of the world via global warming, but since I suspect the end of the world via global warming is now here and it’s freaking hot and we are still lucky enough to be able to afford the air conditioning for now, I’m using it!!!

What do you think?