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GEMs of Beauty: Summer Fragrances

Perfume bottle spraying colorful scent

GEMs of Beauty:
Summer Fragrances

So who cares if the guy standing next to you on the subway clearly hasn’t learned that deodorant is a 9-letter word, or the woman in the checkout line at the grocery has flip-flops so reeking of Eau de Mold that you lost your appetite, or that the air outside is so humid and rank that your hair has grown into a third dimension? Not you. Because you have spritzed yourself with one of these delightful new fragrances, and all you have to do is hold your wonderfully scented wrist up to your nose for a deep breath in. One that will make all the malodorous and the deodorant-deprived magically disappear. Here are some of my favorites:

1. MOSCHINO FRESH COUTURE

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My winner for packaging of the year is this truly genius perfume from Moschino. It comes as a Windex-shaped bottle, although, thankfully, it’s a woody floral that smells deliciously of mandarin, bergamot, ylang ylang, raspberry, peony, osmanthus,  and woods instead of cleanser. Making it very fresh indeed.

Buy it for $82 at www.bloomingdales.com

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2. RALPH LAUREN LOVE and TENDER ROMANCE

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If you’re starting to dread the mail because all that seems to arrive are invites to weddings you don’t want to go to, fear not. You’ll never have to worry about upstaging the bride when you wear one of these soft and enchanting perfumes from Ralph Lauren. Ralph Love is flirty and sweet with notes of apple, cotton candy, and pink rose. Tender Romance is a floral, dominated by white magnolia, jasmine, and ginger lily. They’re distinctive yet delicate.

Buy Ralph Love for $42 and Tender Romance for $45 at RalphLauren.com

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3. LURK AS01 and BS003 PERFUME OILS

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Lurk is a boutique brand created by master perfumer Anne Nelson Sanford, deliberately designed as a mixture pure organic oils with luxe. These aren’t the kind of single-note scents you’d find in a health-food store—they’re incredibly sophisticated. My faves for summer are AS01, with a blend of cedar, tuberose, and rose; and the more androgynous BS003, which mixed dry woods with citrus.

Buy each for $55 at www.lurkmade.com

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4. SARAH JESSICA PARKER LOVELY SHEER

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Speaking of soft and enchanting, Sarah Jessica Parker’s Lovely was an instant hit when it was first launched in 2005, and this version is like its adorable little sister. Its mix of bergamot, mandarin, orange blossom, fresh gardenia water, pink pepper, blonde woods, musk, vetiver, and amber is light but not too sweet. Perfect for apres-sun when you don’t want anything too heavy on your skin.

Buy it for $64 at SarahJessicaParkerBeauty.com

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5. HUGO WOMAN

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If you like a floral/fruity fragrance but don’t want anything too cloying or sugary, this is the ideal perfume for you. It’s got notes of boysenberry, Himalayan red grass, and jasmine, tweaked by a jolt of black tea and amber. It will smell wonderful when you’re baking on the beach (under an umbrella and slathered in sunscreen, thank you!).

Buy it for $72  at www.hugoboss.com

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6. EAU DE LACOSTE L.12.12 POUR ELLE

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A perfume junkie like moi can never ever get enough, so I was thrilled with this set of three new fragrances from Lacoste—which always puts me in a summery mood as the brand always makes me think of long sets of tennis under a bright blue sky. The set comes with Natural (daytime), Sparkling (a night out), and Elegant (in the box at Wimbledon), all with a white floral heart of jasmine blended with other ingredients to make it match the three distinctive moods.

Buy each for $43-$59 at www.kohls.com

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7. TERRY DE GUNZBURG THÉ GLACÉ

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If you liked Terry’s way-out-there Oud Extreme that I wrote about last year (the epitome of a winter fragrance), why not try this practically polar opposite. Thé Glacé combines notes of fiery light with energizing spiced wood, citrus and musk accents. Terry crafted it to be as wonderfully spontaneous as Cologne and as nonchalantly sophisticated as an Eau de Parfum.

Price: $170, Available at Barneys.com

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Remember–heat intensifies scent. Don’t overdo it! Even if you know you smell divine, too much of a good thing can ruin even a scent-junkie’s day. You want your scent to be overly luscious, not overbearing.

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