It’s time to break out of my peasant lifestyle and indulge in a new hobby, and with brand new recommendations for what I think are perfumes and not just highly elaborate snake oil schemes, I’m ready to take New York by storm!

I don’t know about you, but when I woke up yesterday, the only concern I had on my mind was, “What absurdist hobby can I get into that both depends on forming an intense psychic bond with my best friends (but in a totally platonic way) and sounds a bit like the imprinting detail in Twilight?” Well, let’s just say I caught whiff of what would be my new favorite pastime: decorating my dorm room like a Frat boy, but instead of vodka bottles, I’m lining my walls with ones of perfume.

But where to begin? Don’t worry, as soon as I got my list of recommendations, I immediately took my nose on a walk and decided to record my reviews! The metrics for judging are self-explanatory: I asked myself a bunch of questions to see how the perfume could best become the pheromones I use to let my pack identify me from far away, and then I rated the perfume on a scale of how many sniffs would I take to catch as much aroma as possible (or 1-10 sniffs, for people who knew this joke wouldn’t land). So, here are my reviews:

Juicy Couture Viva La Juicy Gold

Can I tell what it smells like based on the name? No. I have never seen real, unaltered gold in my life, so I don’t know what it smells like. Nor do I know what “Couture” smells like. These are all a bunch of words to me.

What are its vibes? The key ingredients are mandarin, gardenia, and caramel, so it’s supposed to be warm, kind of citrusy, kind of floral. Again, I’m going off the website because the store was worried that, by the “looks” of me (I’m wearing jeans, by the way) I’d dowse myself in the sweet stuff and run, so I couldn’t actually smell it, but it is described as “sensual.” So, the vibe is…horny but vanilla?

Does it GIVE “New York?” Sure? The box I looked at was under high security, so I couldn’t actually test it out. But I believe that horniness is quintessential to the #NewYorkGirl experience. Everyone here thinks they’re the next Carrie Bradshaw anyway.

When my bestie smells it, will she think of me? I don’t think she’d particularly describe me as “juicy,” so I don’t think this perfume will strengthen our emotional bond.

Sniff Count: I give it…10/10 sniffs. Mostly because I need as many as possible to be able to recognize it by name and appear “cultured.”

Chanel Chance

Can I tell what it smells like based on the name? No, but I believe that’s part of the intrigue. Like, “Oooh, Chanel has a perfume named ‘Chance;’ this sounds mysterious…” I don’t think people are buying it for the smell, though.

What are its vibes? Here’s what Chanel says because even I can’t even come up with a description this funny: “CHANCE is a fragrance created like a constellation, a composition like an olfactory sphere that opens up in an infinite movement. At the heart of this sphere is a sensuous balance warmed by Vanilla, with pronounced Jasmine Absolute and Iris. A mysterious alchemy, heightened by the intensity of White Musk.” So, the vibes are…horny but very into astrology?

Does it GIVE “New York?” I was promised a “whirlwind of happiness and fantasy,” and I don’t think that’s what’s going here. So, no.

When my bestie smells it, will she think of me? I hope so, because whenever I point my nose to the sky and attempt to sniff the starlight, I think of her…

Sniff Count: 0/10. I was actually kicked out of the Chanel store à la Pretty Woman for wearing a shirt from H&M, so I couldn’t get the chance to catch a whiff.

Jo Malone’s Nectarine Blossom and Honey

Can I tell what it smells like based on the name? If it isn’t nectarine blossom and honey, I will throw a chair. I actually know what those two things are!

What are its vibes? Apparently, it’s meant to capture the vibes of an early morning farmer’s market somewhere in London. So, I guess the vibes are “Grumpy because it’s the early morning and I am in London,” and, “Cold because the Sun never shines here and I am in London.”

Does it GIVE “New York?” No, it gives London.

When my bestie smells it, will she think of me? I am not British, nor have I ever been to Great Britain. Or bought and/or used this perfume.

Sniff Count: I give it a 4/10. I like honey and nectarines, so I will definitely crave some tea. But the sniffs are there mainly because I am confused by the fact that I suddenly found myself in London instead of 116th and Broadway. Like a rat, I use sniffs to reorient myself in unfamiliar surroundings.

Yves Saint-Laurent Black Opium

There were three versions of this one, but when I found the original one that I wanted to review, the attendant in the YSL store I totally walked into this morning informed me that it was the most expensive one by swatting it out of my hands like a cat who woke up on the wrong side of the bed and decided to live a life of evil. The attendant then vacuumed every droplet of perfume perfectly just so that I wouldn’t even try to smell the spillage that was treated like a blend of diamond dust and the post-sex sweat of Aphrodite. “GO BACK TO SMELLING THE SUBWAY JUICE PEASANT,” they told me, pointing to the exit sign. I bowed my head in shame. 0/10 sniffs :(

Vanille Fatale by Tom Ford

Can I tell what it smells like based on the name? It smells like $270 at Sephora, right? I’m just going to also state that having both “Vanilla” and “Fatale” in one title is going to evoke something so raw and horny upon any poor soul who sniffs it.

What are its vibes? Tom Ford himself described this perfume as “Polished, yet primal.” So, even though I have never once been in the same room as a Tom Ford product because every time I tried to touch one of the sample bottles, a cartoon bouncer and red velvet VIP rope magically appears to mock my lack of worthiness to even stare at the liquid, I assume everyone who wears this is very, very horny.

Does it GIVE “New York?” In Maggie: A Girl of the Streets, realist author Stephen Crane portrayed New York as a lawless jungle where everyone acts only on primal, horny and violent instincts, so like, yes?

When my bestie smells it, will she think of me? Well, if it’s anything like the description, she certainly will remember the scent. I just hope it doesn’t make her exclaim, “Aha, that’s my bestie!” because that would be…Odd.

Sniff Count: 1/10. That’d be enough to make anyone’s ovaries explode, if Tom Ford really hit the nail on this description. Again, the bouncer wouldn’t let me smell it, so Tom’s the only one helping me out here.

Burberry Her

Can I tell what it smells like based on the name? “Her” probably smells like me, a powerful, independent, wonderful woman. But waaaaaaaay wealthier.

What are its vibes? Girl boss, Woman in Stem, powerwalking over subway grates in Louboutin stilettos, jump suit, #ImWithHer, #NastyWoman, Red Scare enthusiast, an executive of [insert generic company here] BEFORE moving back to her country hometown and marrying a Chris Pratt-type truck driving Christmas tree salesman…The vibes are…woman.

Does it GIVE “New York?” There’s a reason the Statue of Liberty is nicknamed “Lady Liberty!”

When my bestie smells it, will she think of me? Girlbosses travel in packs, so if she cannot capture my musk within one sniff, then one of us isn’t girlbossing hard enough!

Sniff Count: I give this a 10/10. I need to know where the powerful women in the world are!


Will I commit my life’s savings to any of these precious bottles that act like they contain ambrosia? Probably not; however, I’d like to say that out of all the samples I wasn’t allowed to sniff, I’d say Burberry Her was my favorite! And, after spending a whole afternoon wafting the perfume district, I think I found the perfect equivalent that’s a little bit more up my alley:

One Direction’s Our Moment

Can I tell what it smells like based on the name? Yeah, it sounds like it smells great. Enough said.

What are its vibes? Ethereal, flawless, gorgeous, decadent, intelligent, luxurious. Anyone who wears this immediately gives me the impression that they’re different from the rest of us and understand the world on a much deeper level.

Does it GIVE “New York?” It doesn’t need to GIVE “New York;” this perfume is timeless!

When my bestie smells it, will she think of me? Yes, because like me, this perfume stands out against the crowd, making its unique mark on the world with its delicious scent.

Sniff Count: This is an Infinity sniffs/10. Being graced by the presence of someone wearing this luxury brand of perfume is a “Once in a Lifetime” opportunity, so you better get in as many whiffs before the “Night Changes,” and the memory escapes you like wind.

New Hobby Alert via Photoshop