South Korea Perfume Wearing 2023

Hey Crew, Well, I have a mildly amusing tale about my South Korea perfume wearing on this visit. My travels out on the desk, the Guerlain bag to transport them in and had put my decants into my onboard backpack wetpack. Yeah, I have a kinda G0-Bag here. It has aforementioned wetpack, umbrella, jumper, polo shirt, undies and socks, There are all my phone and Kindle charging needs, lighter, plastic cutlery set, biros, tissues, wet wipes, mints, bottle of water, shopping bags and a small pack of nuts. Sounds like a shitload but it’s hardly even 1/3 of my available space and allows me to shop or carry gifts etc. Jin gave me the bag years ago and his Mum calls it my crap bag because it doesn’t look new and nice. The size is perfect for both daily and travel, it’s really light and is this ridiculous bright blue and orange, which makes me super easy to spot in a crowd. You’d be surprised how often the Go-Bag contents get used.

Anyway, after the decants got packed I must have mentally crossed off the perfume bit of my list and the 5 travels (picked with such love, care and attention to forthcoming adventure), were left behind as Jin and I went traipsing around South Korea. GAH! The best laid plans etc etc etc

South Korea Perfume Wearing 2023

I hear you asking, WHAT did I wear perfume wise in South Korea?

There were two decants. They both came from the same perfumista, I can tell by the writing. My bet is on Scotty but am yet to see him to confirm or deny the hunch. Vintage versions of both and amazing. Hermès Caleche and Givenchy L’Interdit. It was so fun and felt slightly subversive wafting the good old aldehydic florals in a country that wears low key scents. In respect I kept my spritzing light.

Then there was my new FragranceNet 8ml decant Miller Harris La Fumee Ottoman. Bought for around AU$20 it’s a freaking brilliant way to test and not outrageously expensive.

Travelling with perfumistas is really fun. While Jin doesn’t see himself as one his collection and knowledge of the business and its people are formidable. He has a much more acute nose than me, remembers details dropped by perfumers, creative directors and others that I’ve forgotten or not even noted. We cruised through Esxence a few years ago and he throws out little titbits of memory from that adventure still.
Along with Jin were Kerri and TinaG (you may remember her from APJ). Both well read, sniffed and travelled perfumistas with amazing collections.

As we wandered through the Insadong alleys towards our favourite BarBQ joint we had been passing a classy vintage designer clothing and handbag store called NEARED. They had a virtually untouched Valentino bag from the 1980s for under AU$400! Really. It was Jin who sighted the perfumes and we all couldn’t get inside fast enough. A small collection of six fragrances which came in 3 sizes, including a 10ml travel for around AU$19. Colour us interested. We trooped in and smelled the set. On a time budget so I picked the three that spoke to me from the top notes. Sadly I can’t find the brand online to give you anymore info. If I find myself emptying any of these travels I’ll be back to get one of those gorgeous bottles.

Another store I always hit in South Korea is Etude House. Their brand seems to be on the wane and it’s getting harder to find a store. So annoying because they make the BEST liquid eyeliner I’ve ever used. It’s perfect and lasts for an eternity. They have also added a fragrance range and I bought one for my BFF Kath. Aggravatingly I also can’t find the fragrances online damnit!
Here’s the eyeliner though and the perfume box below.

Jin and I also went into the Seoul Station ZARA looking for a bottle of Vetiver Pampelmouuse, which hasn’t come to Oz. It wa the night before we flew out and though they didn’t have it there the SA told us that there were two bottles left in their store just a few train stops across town, they close in under 30 minutes. Well, you can imagine the race that ensued. Run, train, run, run, run. Sure it was about 3C but we were rugged top and by the time we got to the store we had 4 minutes and were sweating like farm hands. SCORE!! Next fortnight I have a little story about how and why I was even looking for this perfume.

Lastly, I love soap and Korean soaps are really good for next to nothing. Their scent is often equal with high end niche (the good stuff) and have surprising note pairings. These all cost around AU$1.

There’s the round up crew.

I hope it was a fun read for you all.
Portia xx


13 thoughts on “South Korea Perfume Wearing 2023

  1. What an exciting adventure you had. Your end story made me laugh as I have done something very similar! I am a perfume addict but am moving at the moment and everything is packed up almost waiting to be unpacked and I only moved 3 k’s. I know you are not a travel agent but how much time would you recommend to spend in Seoul? That’s for shopping and tourist things, oh WOW, a Valentino bag for A$400! I recently purchased Nightcap by who is elijah, I think it would be a “stay home” perfume if I visited Seoul. Look forward to more!


  2. Ooooohhhh nnnnoooooo!
    You chose so well too!
    I have a mental pic of you unpacking & the horror of not having the lovelies with you.
    Still lemonade made with the new purchases.
    The super fast run to Zara tickled me too.
    I hope the VP was worth “sweating like farms hands” for. That phrase tickled me no end.
    Am looking forward to your reports on all the newness


  3. Haha, well those were lucky finds under the circumstances. It is upsetting to forget things on your travels. I came away to France with my laptop but no mouse (I am old school), so I had to order one, plus a docking station thingy to plug it into.

    You have reminded me to check out the Zara range if I am ever somewhere with a store, as it is well regarded and I am completely ignorant of the line.


    • Hey there Vanessa,
      GAH! I’m a mouse lover too. when we had the iPad Jin bought me a proper attachable keyboard and a mouse. Suddenly I was mobile. It was the perfect size to travel the world with and so versatile for blogging.

      DO check Zara. They aren’t all amazing but the few that are, are well worth the trouble to find. I do like the very spicy wood 1980s inspired menswear fragrances too.
      Portia xx


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