16 September 2008

review: harajuku lovers fragrance

Today I received a promotional package of a new fragrance collection by Gwen Stefani, Harajuku Lovers. I am happy to say that I liked them individually (for the most part), and I think they work well as a collection. There is nothing overly unique about the scents, rather they all seem to incorporate familiar and well-loved notes such as vanilla, violet, coconut, pear, and musk. Many of the scents stir up all sorts of childhood recollections, and with scent being the sense most closely associated to memory, these perfumes are an example of the way just a sniff can conjure up all sorts of nostalgic thoughts.

That being said, these fragrances are best suited for younger ladies. The cutesy packaging (each bottle is a cartoon version of Gwen and her backup Harajuku dancers) could be very attractive to 'tweens and early teens (I would have been hooked at that age at least). At the same time, as a twentysomething I also enjoy most of them. Use sparingly and they are truly subtle and sweet; overdo it, however, and they are cloying and sickly sweet. Moderation is key. Here is my take on each one of the scents. I also enlisted some help in the form of a certain B "can I be anonymous?" F, for a man's opinion.

My review: One of the freshest smelling scents I've come across. Really fresh and clean. Would be most appropriate for summer. A bit like walking into a beach-themed store. Or the smell of the beach that lingers on your clothes even after you've gone home. Reminded me a bit of Hollister's signature fragrance that is sprayed like clockwork in its stores. Coconut suntan lotion. Citrus zest. makes my mouth water. Want to drink it, possibly as a cocktail. Could be a bit cloying to wear it. Overall, love it.

His review: "It smells like coconut, and pineapple, so I guess it smells like a pina colada. I wouldn't not like it if I smelled it on a girl."

My review: didn't like it as much as G. Sickly sweet. Very floral and slightly "oriental" as musky, spicy fragrances are often outdated-ly described in magazines. Reminds me of a body spray I had as a child. Delicate. A bit musky. More appropriate for night time wear.

His review: "It reminds me of perfume. It's the most perfumey, I mean."

My review: Melon and pineapple. Lemon. Super sweet, almost like candy. Banana popsicles. Very intriguing. It makes you want to figure out what the individual notes are. Seems really wearable. Much more mild than the first 2. Second favourite so far.

His review: "it smells really sweet. It's hurting my eyes."

My review: Similar to Davidoff's Cool Water for women. Much cooler notes than the others. More natural, less sweet. Seems like it would be most appropriate for someone active, and not a girly girl. A bit spicy. Smelled this one for a long time to try to get a sense of all the layers of scents, and didn't get sick of it.

His review: "This is the best one I think. It's kind of fruity"

My review: Quite different from the others. Baby powder. Soap. A grown-up take on Love's Baby Soft. Nothing stand-out though. Best for natural beauties. After smelling it for a while, and wearing it for a few hours, it really grew on me. It's very subtle and clean smelling.

His review: "Uck. Soap. Baby powder. All these perfumes burn my eyes."

Scent is very personal and individualized, so it is tough for me to recommend any certain perfume. If I were to buy any of them I would buy G, Lil Angel, and possibly Baby. Seeing as they're being released as a group, and that the packaging is so cute, they are clearly being marketed as a "collect 'em all" deal.  Priced between $25 and $45, they are affordable, should you be tempted.


Erin said...

Ahhh, you're doing this too! My samples are arriving later this week...I'm excited to smell them. Did Matchstick call you? I gave them your blog address a while back.... :)

jess said...

"All these perfumes burn my eyes." Classic B.

Jenn said...

wow matchstick is seriously infiltrating our blog circle. your review is so thorough, i'm impressed. i also love brian's comments - he has a weird obsession with the burning of eyes.

Jenn said...

oh sorry, by brian, i mean 'B' of course.

Erin said...

Marketing is scary but free stuff is great.

harajuka perfume said...

What a great review site, i've looked through blogs for it seems hours now and finally came across your review of the harajuka lovers fragrance.

I really love the reviews, their in depth and whats better you even have a male perspective which is great cus i can have some kind of guess as to what my other half will like.

I think these are cool, i know its nothing ground breaking in scent but the designs are so innovative and collectable! thanks a lot again!

the fun one said...

Great job on the review; man's opinion is a really nice touch! I agree with him that "Music" is the best of them.It is the only scent from this collection I can wear. I like fresh sweet scents and to me it's quite addictive fruti floral designed purely for fun. I detect notes of jasmine,vanilla and a bit of musk. It's light and doesn't last long on me but it's very enjoyable. I don't think anyone would expect to find seriously long-lasting high-end perfume in a bottle with cute little girl, right?