My First Celebuscent

Celebuscents have that stigma in the Perfumeland: many perfumistas try to distance themselves from these concoctions; they become the butt of easy jokes; and just from time to time somebody almost apologetically concedes liking one of them despite it being a celebuscent.

Until recently I stayed more or less immune to all of those releases: the only two perfumes I’ve ever tried on skin were Dita Von Teese’s first perfume (a perfumista friend sent me a decant of it because she liked it; I vaguely remember that it wasn’t bad but not good enough to justify even the adorable bottle) and Etat Libre d’Orange Like This (it was a part of one of the LuckyScent’s sample packs – when I was still buying those; I think I rather liked it but since I do not support that brand, sampling was the end of it).

A couple more celebrity perfumes – one from Jennifer Aninston and one from Madonna – I tried on paper but don’t remember anything other than the latter looked like a coffin and had tuberose, which I usually do not like. I would have probably tried CB I Hate Perfume 2nd Cumming (I love that actor, and all the proceeds go to charities), but I’ve never came across that line. And I haven’t tried Boyfriend from Kate Walsh, even though it was widely liked at the time.


The only perfume that can be classified as celebrity perfume that I like, own (a decant – thanks to Suzanne of Suzanne’s Perfume Journal) and wear is Deneuve by Catherine Deneuve. But it is classic perfume already (and regretfully discontinued) so I probably do not even have to be apologetic while admitting that.

When I started coming across multiple mentions of the new Sarah Jessica Parker’s perfume Stash, I wasn’t even tempted: I’m not interested in celebuscents in general, I’m not a fan of SJP, and I don’t like the name (it has drugs connotation for me, which I do not condone).

When hajusuuri asked me if I wanted to get a sample of Stash, I told her that I would test it at a store (how hard can it be to test something like that, right?), which I tried to do on my next trip to the mall – just to discover that none of the stores carried it. There is a chance that I would have eventually visited Ulta, the only store that currently has that perfume, but I’m not sure since I don’t like Ulta as well.

You can see how everything was against our encounter. But then hajusuuri just went ahead and, without waiting for the report on the success or failure of my shopping trip, included the sample into the package she was sending me.

The first minute I applied it, I immediately liked it (and that was my #10, undisclosed, perfume on my Best of 2016 list). I liked Stash on its own merit but also because I was reminded of another perfume I used to like – Gucci Rush for Men. These two perfumes aren’t identical (especially since I’m comparing Stash to “vintage” remains of the Rush) but the resemblance was close enough for me to rush (no pun) to, which just happen to have a sale…

SJP Stash Set

I enjoy the woodiness and dryness of Stash, and I don’t smell any sweetness in it (I read that some people did). The most prominent note to my nose is cedar but if your nose better than mine in identifying notes, a list of those looks promising: grapefruit, black pepper, sage, cedar, patchouli, white ginger lily, pistachio, olibanum, Massoia wood, vetiver and musk. It is unisex with slight leaning towards masculine perfumes but not so drastically to scare away rabbit hole travelers, though I’m not sure about “civilians” (© Tara).

I didn’t need another 50 ml of any perfume, let alone 50 ml of perfume, another 30 ml of elixir oil and a 10 ml perfume rollerball. But the complete set was on sale for less than the smallest full bottle’s price. How could I resist? Besides, I was curious about the Stash oil, which I would not have tried (or bought) otherwise. I like it but I’m not clear on the body application: after I drop some oil on my skin, what am I supposed to do? Leave it to absorb? That can take forever. Rub in with my fingers? But then everything I touch in the next hour will smell like that perfume. Wash my hands afterwards? Not sure if that would help, but even if it did, I’ll need to add the next step – using a hand cream – to an already getting too laborious application routine… Do you have any other suggestions?

Rusty and SJP Stash

Do you own any celebrity perfumes? Do you wear them?

A giveaway: 10 ml Stash EdP rollerball needs another loving home before Rusty gets to it. If you’d like to be entered into the draw, just say so in your comment – there are no other requirements. The giveaway will be open until 11:59 PST on January 21, 2017. The winner will be chosen through I’ll ship the prize to any country (with usual disclaimers).

Images: the collage made from official images; the rest – my own


62 thoughts on “My First Celebuscent

  1. Stash was on my try list, now I really must get my hands on it. Don’t include me in the draw. I don’t like perfumes in rollerball form, and like you I wouldn’t know how to apply best.


    • I also almost never use perfumes in rollerball. The exception is a small decant of Volutes (it’s currently our travel perfume) I made to take with me on a plane: this is a very discreet application method most likely not to disturb anybody around.


  2. Congrats on your new perfume my dear and how cool you liked it! Stash didn’t make it its way to Poland yet, it’s not available anywhere at Sephora, Douglas or department stores.

    I loathe celebuscents for men because 99% of them are the same to me – sporty, watery & bland thing not worth my attention. There’s at least some more variety in female celebuscent.

    How about using Stash oil in the bathtub?


    • I feel like defending celebuscents for men: you’re talking about them in such a manner that suggests that they are any different in that respect from 99% of mass-market perfumes for men! :)

      It’s not a question of how to use the oil in general: my dilemma is with the skin application. But a couple of commenters below made good suggestions.

      I’ll add you to the draw (#1), you’ll let me know if you didn’t want me to.


      • Not sure if I understood first part of your comment – did you mean that men celebuscents are just like non celebuscent mass-market perfume for men – mostly sport themed?

        I misunderstood, still using it in the bath was the only idea that came to my mind.

        Sure, you can count me in the draw since I didn’t try it (uless Stash is one of samples you’ve sent me in the package – then please skip my entry)


        • Yes, I meant that most of the mass-market perfumes for men today are awful, so it’s unfair to single out just celebuscents.

          Unfortunately, I completely ran out of decanting supplies but I didn’t want to wait since AR requires cold weather :) So, let’s see how lucky you are.

          Liked by 1 person

  3. Dear Undina,
    I love your blog and been reading for quite some time now but I didn’t comment untill now.
    Anyway, Stash has been raved all over the place and everyone seems to like it. I haven’t tried it yet but I doubt it would be my thing as I don’t like not-sweet ;)
    About the oil. Just like any other body oil, I would put it after the shower, on damp skin all over or on parts like neck and shoulders only, if I don’t feel like slathering it all over. It will pick up the rest of the water from the skin and not leave oiliness afterwards. Depending on how oily it actually is, I guess a drop or two could be applied on the hair too.
    Best wishes!


    • Hi Vernona! Welcome to my blog – and thank you for the kind words.
      I saw your additional comment below, so yes, I probably won’t follow this advice :)

      You’re #3 (unless you tell me that I got it wrong, and you didn’t want to be entered).


  4. Well first, really jealous of the Catherine Deneuve. It is one of those lemmings I read about that are impossible to source. My all time lemming is Tuxedo by Ralph Lauren. I have visions of wearing that when i was 24 or so and being irresistible. Probably rose colored glasses, but it’s a nice memory. Anyway, your post made me laugh. You have very definite opinions about things which you don’t mind stating. I am a people pleaser so I find this very daring. (That is a compliment, by the way, in case it’s not clear!) I have wanted to try this one…have not seen a bad review yet. Just haven’t come across it, as I’m in Singapore at the moment. Cheers!


    • Oh, yeah… Speaking up my mind – that’s me :) I’m glad it made you laugh and not cry.

      I’ve never heard about that Ralph Lauren’s perfume before but judging by the prices for the vintage bottles on eBay, you’re not the only one who has warm feelings about it. I wish you one day to come across a pristine bottle somewhere at a thrift store.



  5. Considering that both you and Ann of Perfume Posse really love this scent, and that both your tastes are similar to my own, I’ll make my way to Ulta very soon to sample this (no need to include me in the draw). I love your description of it. (Also, btw, that is one of your best photos of Rusty, with the angle of his face and the sunlight coming in from the side to highlight his outretched paw. So cute!)

    Here’s what I do with perfume oils: usually there is a wand in them from which I let a drop or two of the oil fall onto one wrist. Then I rub it in by brushing both wrists together (no need to use your finger unless you wish to apply it someplace other than your wrists). I never thought I would like perfume oils, but I have a couple and find they perform beautifully on my scent-eating skin.


    • I also think that Rusty looks very cute on this picture (and he clearly deserves a treat for that).

      Let me know what you think about Stash once you tried it.

      The first second after I read your advice I was amazed that it hadn’t occurred to me. But then I realized why: I rarely apply perfumes to my right wrist during the work week – not to transform it to the desk when I use computer mouse – so I didn’t even consider that symmetrical application. But in the evenings or on weekends I can use that method – thank you!


  6. Omg, I’m gonna correct myself then,I thought this was a scented body oil like those Tauer did not so long a go… :embarassed:
    Please don’t slather a perfume oil all over yourself after shower ;)


  7. I don’t need to be entered as I have a similar set. I adore Stash in spite of SJP being only fairly meh to me and the name being really awful. I keep trying to imagine it as an acronym for something elegant and coming up with sillier and sillier names.
    As for the oil, I have successfully used it in the bath (but I rarely take baths because the tub here is awful), run a tiny bit through the ends of my hair (not my favorite way to use it, but it does work), and used it on my wrists as a perfume. I expect I will still have oil left long after my other bottles are drained because the bath oil application is best for me. I thought I wouldn’t use the rollerball bottle either and have been proved wrong. It’s very nice for emergency application in a public place when I don’t want to be glared at for applying perfume. I did pry open the first rollerball I bought and decant it into a sprayer, which worked very well.


    • Now you got me thinking on the possible meaning for the STASH acronym! ;)

      I don’t like the bath that I have now as well. But I might close the drain as I’m taking a shower and put a couple of drops into the water – for the scent. Or take it with me to a hotel if I go somewhere in a car (won’t want to fly with it).


  8. The only celebuscent I own is the Dita von Teese one you mention. It’s nothing special but I was temped by the bottle, the small size and the fact I like Dita.
    After reading lots of positive things about Stash I sought it out yesterday at Westfield. It wasn’t for me. It’s extremely powerful (or is that just because I didn’t like it?!) and reminded me of those woody Serge Lutens scents I don’t get on with. Good to hear it worked for you though and that set was a great deal.
    I also wonder how civilians will get on with it :)


  9. I always give celebuscents the benifit of the doubt, most likely b/c the noses behind them can often be some of the best. I confess to really liking Eau De Gaga which to me is niche-quality for about $12. I managed to get a whiff of Stash, but it was Xmas Eve afternoon in the downtown Sephora (what was I thinking? Oh. Right. It was the lure of the See’s Candy next door…) I remember being pleasantly surprised, and would love the chance to know it better…


    • I have to admit that I went to Google to take a look at Eau De Gaga – nope, haven’t even heard about it until today :) I wonder if any B&M store still carries it (though Amazon has it for a song).
      I agree: See’s Candy is a serious distraction :)



      • Yup. Dark Chocolate Molasses chips. Every Xmas since the 60’s. Phew…. Here in the PacNW, it’s all about Fran’s Chocolates (favoured by the Obamas no less) but something about See’s takes me right back to my childhood in San Francisco.

        Liked by 1 person

  10. In my early 20s I had Shania. I was not into perfume at the time, just loved that scent. Today I’m still wanting a bottle to replace the one I used up. I’ve heard great things about Stash, and I’m not surprised because I tried and enjoyed SJP Lovely. Thanks for the giveaway!


    • I’ve never tried Shania but I have my share of those perfumes that I like for how I felt about them many years ago – even if I do not wear them today. I hope you’ll find your replacement bottle, and it’ll still smell great to you!



  11. I just received my Stash set this week from Ulta. Yes, that was really a great deal. I really love this fragrance. I really like the woodiness of this fragrance, and it really lasts! Yes, I love to rub a drop or two of oil through my hair for that occasional whiff of aroma with any head movement. Please do not include me in your drawing (you are so very kind!!), as I would love for someone else to try it and enjoy it as much as I do!


    • Before publishing this post I checked: Ulta doesn’t have that promotion any longer. So we were right to pounce.
      I might try to apply a drop to my hair but, in general, I avoid weighing it down with products. But I do like to shake my head and catch a trace of perfume… I should definitely try it.


  12. Hee, I’m thrilled to enable :-)

    Besides Stash, I have Madonna Truth or Dare and Rihanna Rouge which I got either from a swap or a freebie and I haven’t worn them yet. Do you count Elizabeth & James perfumes as celebuscents? If yes, then I have a rollerball of BourbonnVanille which I emptied it into an atomizer a la mikasminion.

    I love the picture of Rusty and his paw of doom!


    • Thank you once again! It was a very timely enabling :) I couldn’t figure out what perfume to buy for myself as a New Year present.
      I haven’t thought about transferring perfume from a rollerball into a spray bottle! Hmm… I saw something that I thought I wouldn’t mind buying in that size but didn’t like the application method. It opens some additional possibilities :)

      (Rusty will get a treat tomorrow)


  13. That Rusty of yours, he’s just so gorgeous! :)

    I’ve enjoyed all of Sarah Jessica Parker’s frags that I’ve smelt – they don’t seem to be your average by-the-numbers celubuscent, which is rather refreshing given the huge numbers of smell-alike celebrity scents on the market.

    Thank you for the draw :)


    • Lena, Rusty will get a treat for your compliment (I wish he knew the connection – he would have chased me to take a picture of him instead of trying to avoid it).
      I haven’t tried any other SJP’s perfumes but I’m glad I got to try this one.

      You’re in! #8


  14. Hi! Fun post! aim not a huge celebuscent people either. But this one does sound interesting. Not like what I would expect from her for some reason. I am more recently exploring scented oils too. I would apply it to the wrists, and then press and gentle use the wrists to spread the oil, then bring it to the neck and down the cleavage. Then perhaps into the hair. By this point it shouldn’t fee to greasy anymore. Any idea what sort of oil it is? The base, I mean.

    I’d like to be considered in the draw if possible. But I have to admit Rusty looks unsure. Don;t want to deprive him…


    • Thank you, Doreen.
      Rusty will be just fine: 30 seconds after I managed to take that photo, he completely lost interest and disappeared. So you shouldn’t worry about him :) #9

      I don’t see anywhere mentioning of what oil has been used. It should be something inoffensive but I wouldn’t expect any benefits from it.

      Liked by 1 person

  15. I’d love to try Stash! I’ve heard so many good things about it :) As for body oil application, I like to put some body oil on my forearms, and then rub my forarms together. That is my only suggestion for avoiding getting it all over the hands. I like Doreen’s wrist suggestion too!


  16. Well, oddly I used to own a rollerball of Boyfriend, which I bought off Arielle and which I accidentally dropped and smashed on the kitchen floor one Valentine’s Day, which felt horribly significant at the time. It was the regular edp though, not oil. I am similarly not a fan of oils as they do seem to be hard to absorb. Re Stash, I have a sample on the way to me ;), and am really curious about this latest release. By coincidence, SJP Lovely was pretty much the first full bottle I bought after falling down the rabbit hole. I gave it to my cousin in the end, but only because she unexpectedly fell for it (having not worn perfume before) and I wanted to encourage that inclination. I have liked quite a few Celebuscents down the years – Hilary Duff With Love, that Madonna one, the Dita Von Teese scent you also mention – though I liked its oriental successor better, Believe by Britney and even one by Kate Moss called Velvet Hour featuring blue pepper. There are probably others too!


    • Boyfriend’s fate seems significant indeed :)
      Just to clarify: the rollerball in question is an EdP, not an oil. I think oil in rollerball form would have been more convenient for applying.

      I’ve never tried Lovely though I’ve heard about it a lot. I’m curious though whether that present had indeed influenced your cousin’s perfume wearing, if you know.



  17. Sarah Jessica Parker has got an interesting take on perfume to say the least of it. She was quoted in The Perfect Scent as liking body odor. (Really Jessica?) She also had concocted her own perfume from a street musk oil and a high end scent (un-named). So hmm. Only celeb perfume I really liked actually was Cumming. Don’t wear it because the Hub hated it.

    I will keep a lookout for Stash myself after this post :-)


    • Well… Maybe she’s like my vSO who claims that he likes skunk spray odor in tiny amounts? But yes, when I read that part (and the personal perfume-making bits), I had more questions than answers.
      Until August only Ulta will have this perfume but, from what I read, it was supposed to be in each Ulta store. Good hunting!


  18. Several ways I use oil…on the tops of my feet, on my wrists and in my hair after putting it in my palms and rubbing hands together (you can wash your hands after)…I have never tried Stash but have heard good things about it.


    • On the top of one’s feet isn’t a bad idea, especially for warmer weather… Thanks!

      Giveaways are excluded from the “no buy”/anti-hoarding moratorium, aren’t they? ;)



  19. I remember reading about this one, and liking the sound of it. I then looked around a bit, but don’t think it was ever issued over here. So yes, count me in :-) and thank you for the draw.
    I don’t think I have ever had a celebuscent… (insert thinking hard sounds here), I know I always wanted to try Mischa, Barysnikovs fragrance, which sounds great, but like you said it’s not really the same as today’s celebuscent market.
    I have and love Alain Delon Temps d’aimer, a marvellous fruity chypre from yesteryears, so again, it doesn’t really count I believe.


    • You are #13! (unless you ask me to change it to 14 ;) )

      I didn’t know about Alain Delon perfume – or I would have tried to find and test it: he was one of my childhood crushes :) But yes, it doesn’t count.

      Liked by 1 person

  20. Undina, your post is so timely, as I’ve been wanting to try Stash but haven’t come across it in person anywhere yet! Ulta is just about the only place I haven’t tried, so of course that’s where it is.

    Lovely wasn’t one of my favorites, but SJP seems to have her own interesting take on fragrance. Ariana Grande seems to be the popular mass market celebuscent for teenage girls these days. As for perfume oils, I have one from Elizabeth & James that I actually use in my hair instead of as a body oil.

    No need to include me in the giveaway since rollerballs aren’t my preference. But it’s nice that you’re doing the giveaway from that set – such a good value!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi Caitlin! It’s good to see you. If Ulta is somewhere close to where you live, it shouldn’t be hard to get to try it: I read that because it’s exclusive to Ulta, it’s supposed to be in all of their stores (unlike some other brands that might or might not be in the one closest to you).

      Liked by 2 people

      • It’s good to see you, too! I’m trying to be back posting, reading, and commenting more regularly again for the new year.

        We don’t always get every brand/new release here where I live, but it’s good to hear that Stash should be a wide release at Ulta! I’ll have to make a trip on my next day off.

        Liked by 2 people

  21. I meant to come back and comment in time for you drawing. Alas, I have missed the deadline. I have generally steered away from celebuscents. I don’t own any and any samples I may have in my collection are hand-me-downs, or some SA threw a few in with whatever full size bottle I had purchased. I’ve generally found them to be too sweet and lacking any originality. I’ll have to check out SJP’s Stash – we generally have similar tastes.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Hi Juli! I’m glad to see you here. And yes, our tastes have a lot in common.

      I was too busy to close the draw, so you’re in luck: I’m adding you as a # 16 – and will run the winner choice either tonight or tomorrow.

      Liked by 1 person

  22. I was curious so I went to Ulta to try Stash and liked it. They had a different promotion set (just checked and it isn’t online) – I think it was a small and a medium EDP and a very small rollerball. Sorry I don’t have the exact sizes, but I remember that the set cost less than a $50 bottle of the elixir oil which was pleasantly surprising. Thank you for your review!

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thank you for reading :)
      Are you sure it was a different set? Both 50 ml bottle and rollerball in my set are EdP, so it would be strange to have the third bottle in the set also with EdP. My set on sale was around $42.

      Liked by 1 person

      • How embarrassing that I wasn’t even sure what I bought : ) I just pulled it out of the bag and the set has a 30ml bottle of the EdP, a 100ml tube of body creme, and a 2ml rollerball. I just checked the receipt and the set was $40 (which is less than the $50 retail price of the 30ml bottle of EdP).
        (And a quiet hello to handsome Rusty…)

        Liked by 2 people

  23. Pingback: Scent Sample Sunday: SJP Stash – Serenity Now Scents and Sensibilities

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