Perfume samples: I’ve got a pile of them and I’m waiting to use them, just as soon as I finish all my full-sized bottles… yeah, right! Truth it, perfume samples are everywhere these days – they come with Sephora orders, with drugstore purchases, in magazines, and in the mail. To be honest, I’m surprised I don’t have more! I’ve decided to finally review the ones I’ve got, so that I can justify getting more πŸ˜‰ This is a 10-piece collection of samples that was available at Shoppers Drug Mart in 2012, and it included a certificate for a full-size bottle of one of the samples. The set retailed for $75, and it’s refreshed yearly to include the newest and hottest perfumes.

     I love the concept of this set. It lets you try out a whole lot of products and then pick your favorite. And if you already know which of these you’d like in a full-size, it’s a great way to get your hands on some freebies. I think the way this set was designed is excellent for gift-giving, because it’s large and solidly constructed. The front has pictures of each fragrance’s full-size bottle, as well as the following:

Fragrance sampler & certificate for her. Sample 10 of our most sensational fragrances. Select the scent you like best. Submit your certificate for a full-size bottle of your favorite one.

The back has the tiny thumbnail-sized print ad of each fragrance, and on the inside is a velvet-covered plastic tray that holds the samples, as well as a booklet with helpful information about each fragrance (including its style, notes, and the ‘type of woman’ who might enjoy it).

     Here are my quick thoughts about each of the fragrances that come in this set:

Dolce & Gabbana Light Blue Sample

     1.) Dolce & Gabbana Light Blue: the surprisingly different counterpart for my signature scent, Light Blue pour Homme. Still summery, still mainly for daytime, with primary notes of apple and lemon. Very approachable, the type of fragrance I’d like but wouldn’t remember. Cute little sample, and the actual bottle is pretty too. Strong resemblance to DKNY Be Delicious.

Givenchy Hot Couture Sample

     2.) Givenchy Hot Couture: this one scares me, as it came out of the box with a slimy yellow film. Not impressive at all, especially from a house such as Givenchy. Supposed to start with a sweet raspberry, but instead opens with a dusty pepper (maybe something to do with the slime?). Not alluring in the slightest.

Burberry Body Sample

     3.) Burberry Body: mature rose/iris. Also, the bottle is intimidating.

Roberto Cavalli Eau De Parfum Sample

     4.) Roberto Cavalli EDP: an inconspicuous looking plastic sample. The liquid doesn’t resemble the ad – it’s a pale beige instead of a golden amber. Disregarding that, it’s a wonderful scent. Spicy vanilla, which lasts and lasts. Would get this in full-size.

Calvin Klein Forbidden Euphoria Sample

     5.) Calvin Klein Forbidden Euphoria: candy-like raspberry-orange mixture. Is it bad it reminds me of Britney Spears Hidden Fantasy?

Paco Rabanne Black XS L'exces Sample

     6.) Paco Rabanne Black XS L’Exces: spicy-woody, very strong, strangely enjoyable; Unexpectedly so.

Diesel Loverdose Sample

     7.) Diesel Loverdose: spicy-sweet vanilla. Lovely hints of orange.

DKNY Pure Drop of Vanilla Sample

     8.) DKNY PureDNKY a Drop of Vanilla: something extremely unidentifiable, very synthetic. Disappointing.

Taylor Swift Wonderstruck Sample

     9.) Taylor Swift Wonderstruck: this is the full-sized bottle that I used the certificate on (for a friend). The sample is the tallest I own, which is fitting given Taylor’s strong vertical trait. A little disappointing that it’s not a spray, but what can you do. 1.2 mL of clear juice. Strong sweet fruity vanilla scent. Entirely pleasant, super girly and fun. Daytime for spring, far too sweet for summer. Would buy for myself if it wasn’t so similar to a certain $5 Viva La Juicy impression I’ve already owned.

Rihanna Rebelle Sample

Rihanna Rebelle Sample

     10.) Rihanna Rebelle: deep fruity notes, perhaps plum. Slight strawberry. Coffee comes out in the top notes, despite being a base. A strong first fragrance for a celebrity.

     All in all, this set does a great job at bringing home the fragrance experience. I’m confused about the pricing, because the Taylor Swift bottle is the only one that comes in the full-size 100 mL bottle. The rest come in 30-50 mL bottles, which makes me wonder if the set is actually worth the $75 it costs. Unless you see a set like this on sale, just get the free samples that counters give.

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  1. Nice – thanks for going through all those samples. I think the ones that sound most interesting to me are D&G’s Light Blue, Taylor’s Wonderstruck, and Rihanna’s Rebelle. I’ll be looking for samples of these, hopefully at Sephora.
    Not so sure about the pricing and the sample sizes. Are the other perfumes that much more expensive, so that volume is adjusted? In any case, it does sound like a really nice gift set that would be a terrific bargain on sale.

    • Andrea,

      If there’s one thing there’s no need to thank me for, it’s smelling things πŸ˜‰ It comes second nature to you and me both! Of the three you listed I’d suggest Light Blue, I really like it. Hmmm I suppose I didn’t take that into consideration. Still, Walmart sells a 35mL bottle of Wonderstruck for $9 – so is a 100mL really worth $75? Maybe not. As with anything, there’s always good steals and deals in perfume – you just have to know where to look! I think I’ll write a post about that at some point; Gil’s comprehensive guide to perfume shopping πŸ˜‰

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