February 2016 Birchbox Review #4: Catherine Malandrino Romance de Provence Eau de Parfum

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Man, everyone wants Catherine Malandrino to happen.

Perfume samples in subscription boxes can be so hit or miss. I don’t mind receiving them, but they’re not my favorite. I’ve actually only had one perfume sample work out for me in the four years I’ve been receiving subscriptions. (That would be Harvey Prince’s Sincerely). I also don’t like reviewing them too much, because scents are all about personal preference and what works with your body chemistry. A perfume can smell amazing on one person and terribly on another. Still, the review must go on!

I’ve received a few Catherine Malandrino samples from Birchbox and Boxycharm and have been less than impressed. This pricey perfume line’s scents just don’t work well for me. I find them both too sweet and too mature for my taste. (Full disclosure, there’s absolutely NOTHING wrong with being “mature” or liking “mature” scents. They’re just not my personal favorite.)

Birchbox served us up with yet another perfume from Catherine Malandrino, this time the Romance de Provence Eau de Parfum (USD $80.00 for 1.5 oz). See, I told you this brand was pricey. The scent is described as beginning “with subtle fruity layers and opens up to a floral bouquet of jasmine, orange flower, rose, violet and lily (all against a backdrop of powder musk, amber, and patchouli)”. When I read the description, the fact that amber and orange flower, two of my favorite notes, made me a little more excited to try this perfume.

For reference, I have two types of fragrance preferences: very light, non sweet citrus scents and warm, amber and sandalwood scents. Here’s a link to the Harvey Prince Sincerely ingredients so you’ll get an idea of my scent preference.

And here’s what’s up: this is definitely miles beyond the other scents I’ve tried from this brand. The warmer background notes definitely make this perfume more pleasant. I can definitely sense the orange flower in there. However, it is still way too sweet for my personal taste. The fruity notes are just too strong.

Sweet scents just don’t mix well with my body chemistry. It’s not sugary sweet, but still strong enough that I didn’t like the way it meshed with my skin. However, I think this perfume could smell quite lovely on someone with the right body chemistry.

Rating: 3/5. While this scent is still too sweet for my taste and didn’t work with my body chemistry, if you love fruity scents against warmer notes, this perfume may be up your alley. Still, $80.00 for an eau de parfum still seems very pricey. Definitely make sure to try this in person before making an investment.

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