Anyone who has ever been into a L’Occitane en Provence store knows what a great array of bath and body products they carry; from the aromatherapy of lavender to the wake up call of citrus to the excellent selection of grooming essentials for men, they have it all. What may not be as well known is their selection of quality perfumes which are superior to many of the fragrances sold at other stores in shopping malls across the country.
What brought me to the L’Occitane shop at Pioneer Place in Portland recently was the prospect of trying their new version of their Pivoine Flora scent, which had previously been available only in Eau de Toilette, but recently introduced in Eau de Parfum. As a big fan of peonies I was eager to try it. I was not disappointed, as it is a delightful fragrance, softer and smoother than the EDT formula with its zesty grapefruit opening. The Eau de Parfum has magnolia and subtle woods and is somewhat sweeter than the other one. Both are very good, and the price is right on these too, at $42 for 75 ml of the EDT and $60 for 50 ml of the EDP.
I checked out the other perfumes in the store since there were some that I had not tried yet. I already love their Verbena line, as icy-cool and crisp as anything you can find for beating the heat, and the seasonal Citrus Verbena summer fragrance adds in Sicilian lemon and grapefruit extract for an even more refreshing character. If the really hot summer days ever do show up in the RoseCitythis year, you can’t go wrong with this.
I was also impressed with Neroli, which is built around a classic orange blossom accord and accented with tangy lychee. Some people do not really care for lychee in perfume, which I can understand since it has been abused as a component of some cheap and overly sweet fruity-florals, but here it adds a charming facet to the scent. On the other end of the spectrum is Myrtle, a delicately sweet and refreshing scent with a touch of green. I would definitely wear this on a hot and humid day since it is very cool and calming. I also liked their take on a floral which can be difficult to capture, but L’ Occitane has done nice work with the limited edition Mimosa, which is characteristically powdery but not musty or flat; It retains a gentle freshness on the skin over time. Another standout was Labdanum, another limited edition fragrance with a dry, sun-soaked, Mediterranean quality from the resinous namesake ingredient. It was stocked with the women’s perfumes but men should not miss this one, it’s perfectly unisex and subdued enough for summer wear in the office. All of these are in Eau de Parfum and are $68 for 75 ml. If you are interested in any of the limited edition fragrances now being featured, better hurry in and check them out soon – they are easy on both the nose and the wallet.