Category Archives: fragrant thoughts

The reason I write

Very soon it will be 7 years since I created Chemist in the Bottle and started writing about perfume. Did I think I would carry on for so long when I was setting everything up? Absolutely not! Never in my dreams I expected that I will have enough perseverance to review fragrances and to talk about scent in general. But here I am, still standing and smiling. Some of you started reading my thoughts because you recognized my nickname on Basenotes – first place where I started sharing my thoughts about perfume. Others knew I was a regular commenter at Now Smell This.

When Chemist in the Bottle was created I only had one reason for doing so. I needed a place, a platform that would accept my creative output. A piece of digital world that would allow me to express the way each perfume makes me feel, so that I wouldn’t have to keep these thoughts only in my head or on a piece of paper put into a drawer as soon as I’ve finished writing – a paper that would never see the light again. It didn’t matter if someone else would read my posts. As long as I could express myself freely, I was fine with it. And then you came and made this place alive.


It was, and still is, such a thrill to have a real audience that I could talk to virtually. A group of people who actually cared for what I was writing. But the world is not standing still. On the contrary it’s moving quite rapidly. It is changing. I have changed too and you were among the witnesses of that change. You’ve seen me grow up and how I step into an adult & independent life. Perfume world is undergoing some drastic changes as well and I have many doubts about the direction it has taken. I guess we have to wait and observe further development of the evolving fragrance scene.

I think coming to Esxence this year opened our eyes even wider as to what is happening and how youtubers, vloggers and influencers start to be desired way of advertising for niche perfume brands in social media. When we all came back home a couple of other writers – wonderful people who are dear to my heart, suffered from ‘post-Esxence trauma’ that punched them right in their faces. My biggest concern about them was the fact that they were in doubt, questioning if there’s a point for them to continue writing if less and less people are interested in a written word. I was saddened.

I didn’t have such negative thoughts but it was painful to see friends going through such a hardship. It was even more difficult considering that for me words are the only rightful way of true expression. When I write a perfume review my goal is to become like an artist every single time. I want the words that I use to draw an image I saw in my head, so that you can see the same picture with your imagination. I want each sentence to convey emotions and olfactory impressions. When I write and you read, our minds are alike, they are connected, even if we are thousand miles apart.


I hope that you can feel it when you read my articles. If you do, that means more than a world to me. I never thought about my writing as being influential but I think that over these seven years I might have convinced you a couple of times to buy a perfume just based on the impressions that I posted. I’m flattered by that but I’m sure you all agree that it doesn’t make me an influencer. Honestly I want to separate myself from such people with a bold line. Believe it or not but lately I’m being approached by random companies who claim to love my blog and offer ‘collaborations’.

I am not interested in such propositions, I say no to these or ‘thank you, next’ (thank you Ariana!) because I am proud of having a freedom of sharing my own opinions. I am not here to shake the ground of a perfume world. I only want to spread the love for fragrance, especially those lesser known ones, all across the globe. I also want to connect with people like me – who have an artistic soul and who can appreciate the fleeting beauty of perfume notes. That’s what really matters to me as a writer. As long as I have this reason I hope to continue my scented journey with all of you.

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Travelling Box of Perfume – Notes from Marilee

It’s been over two months since the previous installment to the Travelling Box of Perfume reports. I had difficulties with getting in touch with one person. The box eventually continued it’s journey but I still didn’t get the impressions to post. So here you have the impressions from Marilee, who is just about to bid farewell to the Box as she sends it to the next temporary home.


Your general impression of the box once it arrived…
WOW. Big box, so much inside.  The first thing I did was read all of the notes, which was an unexpected surprise. I decided to be systematic about going through the box.  Armed with paper strips, I started with bottles and travel sprays and then went on to the samples.  Everything new to me hit paper, and anything that intrigued me was set aside for skin. It took 3 sessions to get a full skin testing list.  Then I spent the next week trying things on skin.

Favorite perfume in the box…
Dior Gris Montaigne, Majda Bekkali Fusion Sacree Obscur, Neela Vermeire Bombay Bling

Least favorite perfume in the box…
4160 Tuesdays Maxed Out (cumin overload!) and Zoologist T. Rex (so heavy, evokes grilled meat for me).

Mini reviews
Jo Loves Vetiver:  a not too heavy Vetiver with a bright pepper opening; sadly the cumin took over
Memo Tigers Nest:  really nice “starter” incense – not too heavy or demanding.  Too pricey to put on the buy list.
Areej el Dore Oud Picante:  Hot. Pungent. If I was an oud person (I’m not) I would really like the spices here.
Papillon Anubis:  have wanted to sniff this forever. Heavy duty leather and smoke.  Not something I have occasion to wear but beautiful.
Heeley Coccobello:  green tropical – nice opening of coconut water and gardenia.  But it didn’t hold my attention after the opening.
Zoologist Camel:  definitely evokes the desert.  Nicely done but for the desert I have L’Air du Desert Marocain.
Child perfume oil by Susan D. Owens: this apparently had a moment as a celebrity fave.  Remided me of the Kai celebrity moment. So safe, a beachy tropical jasmine. I don’t get the idea that it’s the sexiest perfume ever (celebrity quote, apparently) but, whatever!


Out of the box
Atelier Cafe Tuberosa travel spray (this is on my buy list but the travel spray isn’t readily available)
Majda Bekkali Fusion Sacree Obscur:  I want to try this a few more times to see if it rises to buy status.
Neela Vermeire Bombay Bling
Dior Gris Montaigne (not much left)

Into the box
Some paper test strips (I went a little crazy adding but I love to share!)
Small Decants:
Tauer L’Eau
Atelier Pacifc Lime
ELDO I Am Trash
Dame Skyfather
Dame Peach, Violet and Vanilla
Goutal Bois d’Hadrien
Pharrell Williams Girl
Au Pays de la fleur d’oranger Violette Sacre
Marni Rose
SJP Stash rollerball – unused

Nicolai Cap Neroli and Rose Royale
Tauer Vanilla body oil
Jeffrey Dame Vanille Farfelue
Carthusia Uomo, via Camerelle, Meditteraneo
Mirus Perfumes- Silver Lining, The Elysian Fields, Driftwood, Ceremony
Olivier & Co Veil
Frapin Nevermore
Chris Rusak Bluer Skies, 33
Ormonde Jayne Woman
Stora Skuggan Silphium
Helmut Lang EDP
PK Perfumes Cafe Diem
Teo Cabanel Early Roses, Julia, Meloe
Sylvaine Delacourte La Collection Muscs discovery set

Thank you for allowing me to participate in the box. It was so much fun to spend a few days “reeking”. The timing worked for me as well – I’m a teacher and it arrived after school was out for the summer.

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