I really, really love using oils rather than alcohol-based perfumes. This affair began in 2003, when I bought a random bottle of perfume oil from a hippie at the Portland Market, and discovered that what I'd really purchased was a couple ounces of spanish fly. I was like the reverse Pepé Le Pew - people would actually follow me down the street to ask what I was wearing. Strangers on the subway sniffed my neck. And it led to me drunkenly and disgustedly dismissing a date at the Hub when he couldn't stop telling me how good I smelled.
"I know," Whiskey Janie replied instead of a polite "Thank you."
I mean, I DID know. I could smell me.
"You don't understand," he said, eyes wild, practically drooling. "You smell REALLY, REALLY good."
"Yeah, I know."
"No, I mean, so, soooooo good. It's amazing. I've never smelled anything like you."
Cue bored eye roll and stool swivel - when tipsy, I was completely unsympathetic to the power this oil stuff wielded over others.
In the sober light of day, however, imagine my disappointment to find that before I could place an order for a lifetime supply, the hippie stand was out of business. I horded that oil for another year, using sparingly, but I couldn't sit on it. The world needed to smell it, and then I was out. It still makes me sad to think of all the stuff left unconquered by the strategic application of that glorious oil. What might have been.
Anyway,having grown attached to how close the scent clings with oil, I now keep my eyes peeled for them. Last Saturday before Miami lost to FSU, I felt sure of my impending doom and decided to conquer the pain by numbing my entire being with a xanax and 90-minute deep tissue massage at a nearby spa. To my delight, they carry a line of candles and smelly things called Voluspa, and Voluspa makes some very pretty little oil-based roll-ons just PERFECTLY sized for a clutch. They packaging caught my eye, and from a practical standpoint the bottle's screw-top is made well enough not to pop off and coat the contents of your purse in an aromatic slime you will never get rid off (this is key). And then I smelled the Malayan Coco scent, and fell in love for real.
Coconut's tough. There's a verrrry fine line between smelling like cheap sunscreen and smelling like the promise of summer and everything good and tropical and lovely and moon-kissed. This Malayan Coco was musky enough to pull off the former thanks to notes of sandalwood and lemony hinoki wood, and I was sold. It's not my beloved hippie oil, but it's a very nice runner-up.
$24ish | Voluspa