Mama Matsuo Musing #5: Scents & Sensibilities

This Mama Matsuo Musing isn't necessarily something she taught me outright, but more something she showed me over the years:

Mama Matsuo Musing #5: Be Scent-sationally Memorable!

"French women know one can go far with a great haircut, a bottle of champagne, and a divine perfume."

So says Mireille Guiliano of the amazing French Women Don't Get Fat which I absolutely adore (the woman and the book, to be clear.) Interestingly enough, coming home for the holidays got me thinking about this phrase...likely because my mother was always my personal Mireille Guiliano in a lot of ways. (You can refer to my other "Mama Matsuo's Musing" posts - the woman has taught me some solid tips.)

Let's be very clear on a few things from the get-go though...
  • I'm currently growing out my hair - translation: "A great haircut" is something I do not possess at the moment.
  • I have a pretty bad allergy to alcohol - translation: I may have a bottle of champagne, but it's for someone else, not for me.
  • I'm not French - translation: I'm not French
So, what does that leave us with? PERFUME! Yes!

My mother always smelled wonderful. She cooked, cleaned, and took me to school...shoveled the snow off the driveway, sewed every Halloween costume, and dealt with everything from basement floods to me getting electrocuted (true story)...all while smelling like she had been lazing about in a tub of flowers all day long.

I've come to realize that the way I smell is very important to me...and I don't even mean that in any sort of snobby way (though that would be very amusing.) It's for little secret. My little traveling aromatherapy session. My sense of smell is the one that leads me back to my past. To good times and even bad. Smelling a perfume I wore at a certain time in my life will instantly turn back the clock. Olfactory time machine. It's the best kind. (Fewer time-space continuum malfunctions & mishaps.)

When Husband Charles gives me a big hug and nuzzles his face into my neck, he'll sometimes whisper "you smell nice"...and that doesn't hurt. Not smelling like something died or is decomposing...yeah, that doesn't hurt either.

So, yes, everyone should invest in a favorite scent or two. Find a signature perfume or cologne and make it your own. People will begin making a connection between you and that lovely fragrance and, ladies & gents, there is nothing wrong with that. In fact, everything about it is right!

To help you get started, I've compiled a list of my favorite perfumes & colognes (gents, you can learn a thing or two from this list as well):
  • Dolce & Gabbana Light Blue Eau de Toilette Spray - light, fresh, vibrant, and very much an enthusiast's perfume. This one puts a spring in my step and a smile on my face! I wore this one for a good 3 years straight. It definitely comes up in rotation from time to time even now.
  • Chloé Eau de Parfum Spray - floral...think roses, peonies, and freesia. Ultra-feminine, intoxicating and romantic. It makes my eyelids the best way. I'm wearing it right now, actually.
  • Penhaligon's Sartorial Eau de Toilette - this fragrance falls into the fougère category, usually for men. You know why I like it? Because it smells like leather, lavender, wood...and other manly things. It smells like clean men lying around in white sheets. This is one of my everyday scents at the moment.
  • MCMC Hunter Perfume Oil - tobacco, bourbon vanilla, think flannel shirts and chopping wood...another masculine scent that I find absolutely irresistible! Maybe I just like smelling like there's a man standing next to me...the type of man that makes me pancakes in the morning.
  • Bvlgari Pour Homme Eau de Toilette Spray - oh, look, another men's fragrance. To tell you the truth, this was the first men's fragrance that didn't give me a headache. I discovered it at the tender age of 16. It beat out Polo Sport & CK One...that's f'sure. I've been hooked on it ever since and pressure Husband Charles to wear it regularly.
  • Tocca Beauty Stella Eau de Parfum Spray - have you seen A Street Car Named Desire? That know the one...where Marlon Brando's character screams "STELLAAAAAAA!" That's how I felt when I tried this on for the first time. Goodness, there's no way I could live without you, STELLAAAAA!!!! (By the way, it's citrusy, sweet & fresh - think blood oranges.)
Now, mind you, these are just suggestions. Finding your own signature scent or scents will be a journey all your own, but a rewarding one. I'd love to hear about which perfumes and colognes are your favorites! And if you don't have your very own yet, I can't wait for you to find it!

Currently, Mama Matsuo smells like Tocca Beauty Cleopatra Eau de Parfum Spray...and I have a feeling that scent is going to make me recall this particular holiday season for years to it should! Happy fragrance hunting! xo!

Image: Created by Nami M. Scott


  1. Dolce and Gabbana Light Blue is my fancy night out perfume. I love it! Just the right amount of musty and floral. I like musty... that makes me sound SUPER attractive, doesn't it? haha

    1. Ahhhh, mustiness. The most attractive characteristic a woman can have. ;)
      But, seriously, glad to hear you're a fan too!

      Cheers to smelling good!


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