Olfactif is a monthly perfume sampling subscription. Every month, you’ll receive a curated collection of three niche fragrances (2.25 mL for most, occasionally 1.75 mL) by perfume artists from around the world. You will also receive an $18 credit towards a full-sized purchase of one of the month’s featured fragrances. Olfactif offers a unisex collection and recently began offering a men’s collection as well.
My Subscription Addiction paid for this subscription box. (Check out the review process post to learn more about how we review boxes.)
This review is of the Unisex Collection, $18 a month, box.
The Subscription Box: Olfactif
The Cost: $18 a month
The Products: Three 2.25 mL sample spray bottles from three fragrance artists from around the world.
Ships to: U.S.
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Each Olfactif collection comes with a card detailing the month’s theme. This time, there was a little envelope with individual cards about the fragrances. This month’s theme was “Not What It Seems.”
I also received little test strips to spray the fragrances on. This is useful (and way better than the ripped-up Post-It notes I was using before).
It’s important to note that fragrances may smell different when you wear them than when you spray them on a card or piece of paper. They may also smell different on different people due to individual body chemistries.
Also, the fragrances develop and change over time, with different notes becoming prominent. “Top” notes form your initial impression but evaporate within a few minutes, so you may still love a fragrance even if you are not fond of the top notes. “Middle” or “heart” notes emerge after you’ve been wearing the fragrance for a few minutes up to an hour. “Base” notes are large, heavy molecules that persist for a long time. They are often richer than the top or middle notes, although they may contribute to how you perceive the top and middle notes due to their interactions with the other fragrance components.
Eau Monumentale by Thirdman
This is a cologne and although Olfactif says it’s not just for men (“cologne” is a term that has to do with fragrance concentration), it is somewhat masculine. Notes in this one are bergamot, lime, orange, neroli, mimosa, woods, and amber although oddly, “citrus” was not my first thought upon smelling this one. I liked it better after an hour or so, I guess the top notes were not my thing but the base notes were.
Violet Disguise by Imaginary Authors
I like this one even though it is not my usual type of fragrance. Notes in this one are plum, violet, dried fruits, balsam, amber, “evening air,” and “the month of May.” I honestly have no idea what those last two are supposed to mean. I mostly notice the plum and violet. This is nicely fruity and floral and I liked this both at the beginning and over time.
Yes I Do by Etat Libre d’Orange
This was intensely flora. Weirdly, the first thing I thought of was “rose,” even though this doesn’t actually have rose notes in it. It does have jasmine, lily of the valley, orange blossom, amber, patchouli, cocoa, musk, and marshmallow. I think the reason this one worked for me was everything from amber on – those are the sorts of notes I prefer in fragrances. And they worked really well with the florals here. (As an aside, I had a horrible cold when this box arrived and for several days later so it is possible my sense of smell was way off.)
Finally, in case you were wondering where my helper was, he was waiting at the computer to write this review.
Verdict: This was a pretty good month from Olfactif. I am not sure whether I liked Violet Disguise or Yes I Do better; I suspect I’d prefer each of them in different situations. I was pleasantly surprised to find myself enjoying fragrances outside of my comfort zone (spicy Oriental), and I probably never would’ve heard of any of these if not for Olfactif.
What do you think of the February 2017 Olfactif collection? What was your favorite fragrance this month?
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