Black Friday seems to be hanging on, we hope you #shopsmall and Cyber Monday for many of us is really 365 days a year. If you are a regular reader of CaFleureBon you know I don't believe in blind buying perfumes as a Holiday Gift unless it is a much-wanted bottle and I have reservations even then. Even if you think you know what they want, true perfumistas are likely to spring for that bottle without telling you it’s off of their “Must…Have…Now” list and they are already onto the next acquisition, most likely something unobtainable and found only as a numbered Limited Edition and as times are tough went in on a split, so they end up with a decant. This year I had a change of mind. A dear friend was lusting for an Aftelier Perfumes last year and I bought it for her as a Holiday Gift. Now my confession… although I test 100s of fragrances a year, I wear five-ten on a regular basis. My precious bottle (it shall be nameless) was down to a few drops and I gently hinted to our Senior team, “so maybe if you want to get me a Holiday Gift…” So all bets are off and I am now thrilled with a bottle of one of my favorites. Now that I have almost (but not quite) discouraged you from giving fragrance as a holiday gift, it is time to think outside the bottle.
My 2018 Holiday Gift Guide includes 13 scentabulous ideas (and 11 could be yours)that will please even the pickiest perfume peeps.
Best Perfume Gifts That Aren’t Perfume
Many Perfume companies have beautiful candles, but why not send one with a message as a Holiday Gift? Christopher Chong of Amouage’s Midnight Flowers collection conveys his own cherished memories of finding solace and light even during times of loss. Happy! Isn’t that what the holidays should be about? Like all Amouage perfumes the Amouage Happy Candle, has top (cinnamon, clove, nutmeg), heart (rose, plum, heliotrope) and base notes of pine, patchouli, Sandalwood and Vanilla). Burn time 40 hours/$95
Smart Scents? Yes, there is an “app for that”. So what gets my heart racing this year as a must have holiday gift ? A new product designed for the modern-age aroma lover, Belle Fleur Scent/Speaker with bluetooth technology safely, which conveniently diffuses your favorite Belle Fleur aromas in your residence, spa, store or office space, while offering a truly multi-sensorial experience. It is a tough to choose just one but I am recommending Bergamot Cedar, which includes additional notes of galbanum, frangipani, cistus, and sandalwood— a wonderful alternative to the pine scents usually associated with the holiday season. Available in a variety of decorative finishes and includes your choice of fragrance, all composed by Jerome Epinette. $485 (less than a bottle of many luxury perfumes)!
One of the people I admire most in the world is Patricia de Nicolai, and today, December 5th happens to be her birthday. She was and is a pioneer and role model for women perfumers all over the world. Since I travel quite a bit I like to perfume the air, especially in homes that think glade plug-ins is scent. I enjoy Bois de Santal Room Spray this time of year with its creamy sandalwood aroma enhanced by a touch of rose and cinnamon. Recently I sprayed it lightly in my bureau drawers where I keep my scarves. The scent trail is subtle and cozy. 100 ml/ 42 €
Sage Machado of The Sage Lifestyle hand crafts one of a kind Gemstone Perfume Bottle Necklaces, using the finest quality gemstones and each have different healing properties. Since the Holiday season isn’t always the most wonderful time of the year (unless you are in the audience of the Ellen de Generes show) it can be stressful and overwhelming. Choose a gemstone to ward off those negative feelings that inadvertently surface no matter how hard you try to be ever so jolly! Black Obsidian, which is a strong psychic protection stone is purported to shield you against negativity, and release disharmony. Suspended from a 30 inch sterling silver/ 22 k plate chain, this powerful talisman includes four sample perfume vial refills of your choice. $325. On my personal holiday gift wish list.
I love diffusers and I have noticed so do my neighbor’s two children who usually dash around my apartment and all the lovely liquid spills on my floor. Leave it to Nest Fragrances to invent a liquidless diffuser, which is especially nice as a holiday gift for people with pets who tend to jump on everything. I recently gave my picky sister The NEST Fragrances Liquidless Diffuser™ in their award winning Bamboo scent a soft green floral that won’t conflict with your perfume. Nest created this maintenance-free product which disperses scent into the air for 90 days without the use of a flame or liquid. Each diffuser comes with five patent-pending ScentSticks™, so that you can customize the strength of the fragrance to your room size and preference. $60
No one wants to kiss chapped dry lips no matter how much mistletoe you stand over. Soften your pout with Connection Lip Rescue Balm by Provision (from our Notes from the Lab Contributor and professional perfumer) Sherri Sebastian. This all-natural formula uses Orange flower absolute not commonly found in lip balms and is a multi-tasker that can be used on your cuticles and as a solid perfume. Give it to your beloved as a Holiday Gift. You’ll thank me. $55 for 15 g ALL NATURAL
You aren’t getting any younger. Stress, lifestyle and environment all take their toll on your skin. Those furrow between your brows? A few could be from worrying you will miss out on that rare vintage Guerlain Djedi on eBay. I have been blessed with good skin but like everyone, genetics can take you so far, especially when you are losing sleep or super-stressed. I have been testing Aromatherapy Associates Hydrosol Sheet Mask for two weeks and I see a noticeable boost in overall radiance, plumping of fine lines and hydration that lasts through the day. I am wearing one now and the non-slip biodegradable mask fits snugly and is on my face, not on the keyboard. Infused with hand-blended pure essentials oils, key ingredients include frankincense hydrosol, rose, turmeric root, hyaluronic acid and aloe vera. The Holiday Gift you’ll need an hour before you are ready for that Christmas Selfie. $68
.The Holiday season descend upon us in earnest, it seems. One of the more creative aromatic non-perfume Holiday gift which is sure to delight is Aftelier Chef’s Essence drops and sprays. Mandy Aftel is every bit as passionate about flavor as she is about scent (I’m with her!) – but please don’t be intimidated by the concept! It’s honestly not that difficult. Even if you are a washout in the kitchen, you can enliven a sauce (homemade or store-bought), seltzer, highballs, a gin and tonic, a vinaigrette, soup or stew with them, one drop at a time. They are so intensely flavored that less is more. I’ve purchased many for myself and others over the years; Mandy and Foster sent me a sample of their ginger and blood orange flavor drops. These are spectacular, folks: they pair well together and/or separately in cranberry sauce, added to a hollandaise over your grilled asparagus, in cocktails of all varieties. If you mull wine or cider – swirl in a drop! They make custards, puddings, cakes memorable; perk up game as well as the humble chicken or fish dish. Why not tofu? Crème brûlée? I like a warm brown basmati Indonesian rice salad bejeweled with vegetables and cilantro, garlic – dressed in rice wine/toasted sesame dressing which pops with a drop of each…They are economical, too. The Fresh Ginger sells for $18.00/5 ml. the Blood Orange, for $12.00/5 ml. You can’t even attend a movie for that price.- Ida Meister
Some people are shower people and some are bath people… Shay & Blue has everyone covered with their new Rich Almond Shower Oil. You can pour it into the bath or into your hands. Oil and water do mix as the cherry blossom scented cleanser turns into a milk leaving your skin silky smooth. Notes include Fig, Citrus, honeysuckle, black cherries and woods. Composed by Julie Masse of MANE. I am addicted. 250 ml / £18.00
Who is that whispering but Michelyn, CaFleureBon is mainly a perfume blog, and you HAVE to put in perfume. You said you would, and I will…. so simmer down.
A scented answer to that tired line what’s your sign? Whether you believe in astrology or want to strike up a great conversation when someone asks you what that beautiful fragrance you are wearing… The Zodiac Perfumes from Strange Invisible Perfumes by Alexandra Balahoutis . Alexandra's approach to the formulation is not typical; they are more than perfume and light-years beyond aromatherapy; she has also worked with noted astrologists. Every composition is engineered to enhance and balance. As a Sagittarius, according to an email I received from the Company, “Ancient Astrologers said that during the year you have Jupiter, the giver of gifts in you sign, it is the best year of 12 years to meet your true love.” 15ml/$125
Fragrance A-I: Give your special someone, (and that might mean you) a holiday gift of a perfume from Ineke Ruhland of INeKe. One of the most talented indie perfumers on the planet, every perfumista I know loves at least two or three of her award-winning perfumes. This year her Holiday Bundle includes her Deluxe Sample Collection and a gift code for a full-size fragrance of their choice. The Deluxe Sample Collection includes seven of Ineke’s gorgeous perfumes from the powdery lilac of After My Own Heart to the aromatic woods of one of CaFleureBon’s favorites…Idyllwild. Purchasing this bundle provides both the Deluxe Sample Collection and a digital gift card containing a unique code. The gift card recipient can enter this code at checkout to subtract the $110 gift card value from their order total. The gift recipient’s shipping cost will be free. At a price of $110 for the holiday special, the Deluxe Sample Collection ends up being a free bonus, and you can be sure that your gift recipient gets a fragrance that they/you love. Need some help choosing, Read Sr. Editor Ida Meister’s The ThreeYou Should be Wearing.
Shalini is the creative director for three ultra-luxe haute parfums and a former fashion designer. Each of her luxe extraits are signed by Maurice Roucel.The buzz of the blogosphere and on many of our editor’s personal Holiday Gift lists is the Shalini Parfum Flight Set. In a beribboned gift box, the set includes 7.5 ml of the white floral masterpiece Shalini created in 2004, Jardin Nocturne inspired by Dubai and Amorem Rose $390
How much do we love Neela Vermeire fragrances? So much so that I would guess some of our readers own at least one or two or more. So Take Two. Neela offers 2 x15 ml of her precious elixirs created in collaboration with Bertrand Duchaufour: Bombay Bling, Trayee, Pichola and the Art and Olfaction award winning Ashoka in beautiful flacons and wrapped in her signature packaging. €112.00 Need help deciding? Please read Senior Editor Lauryn Beer’s “The Three You Should be Wearing here.
-Michelyn Camen, Editor in Chief aka Scent-A-Baby
This year every perfumed Holiday gift in the guide is part of a draw with the exceptionion of the Belle Fleur Smart Scent Diffuser and Sage Machado necklace. 11 Holiday Gifts for 11 readers.
WORLDWIDE: Thank you to the wonderful Christopher Chong for making us Happy with his Amouage Midnight Flower Happy Candle
WORLDWIDE: Much love and Thanks to Mandy Aftel for the Fresh Ginger or Blood Orange Chef Essence Flavor Drops. Please your choice in your comment. ALL NATURAL
WORLDWIDE: Merci Madame de Nicolai (and happy Birthday December 5) for 100 ml of Santal des Indes Room Spray
WORLDWIDE: EU, USA, and CA ONLY: From the always generous Dom De Vetta Shay & Blue Rich Almond Shower Oil
USA, Canada and EU only: From the fantabulous Neela Vermeire Take Two (specify which you want want in your comment)
USA ONLY: Thank you Shalini for the Flight set of her three sumptous parfums
USA ONLY: From our Generous friends at Nest Fragrances for The Liquideless Bamboo diffuser
USA ONLY: Your choice of any Strange Invisible Perfumes Zodiac ALL Natural perfume (leave in your comment which "sign" you would like)
USA and EU ONLY: Grateful to Aromatherapy Associates for the Hydrosol Sheet mask
USA ONLY: Many Thanks to Ineke for her wonderful holiday gift bundle
USA ONLY: With gratitude to Sherri Sebastian, the founder and perfumer of PROVISION for the heavenly orange blossom scented Connection Rescue Lip Balm
To be eligible for our scentabulous 2018 Best Holiday Gifts for perfume lovers please leave a comment with someone in your life who really deserves a great holiday gift and why, where you live and as many of the 11 you would hope to win and are eligible for. You must be a registered (be sure to do this or your comment won’t count) reader. Do you give perfume for holiday gifts? Draw closes December1 0, 2018.
We announce the winners on our site and on our Facebook page, so Like Cafleurebon and use our RSS Blog Feed option…or your dream prize will be just spilled perfume