Silly young things at the Hard Rock Cafe, London, 1998. (That’s me, front and center)
I purchased Estee Lauder’s Pleasures with one of my first paychecks (ever) from working at JCPenney (quelle shame! ha), the summer after my senior year in high school. I have purchased it since then probably once or twice more, but I have (guiltily) requested it from the PR machine a dozen times. It is easily one of my most favorite scents in the whole world - granted I’m a sucker for a beautiful floral, but this one has some extremely special connotations for me.
Fragrantica describes it:
Pleasures is a rich bouquet of fresh flowers after the rain, which is designed to suit “every woman in every season and at every moment”. It is a delightful sheer floral created from delicate lilies and peonies, elegant jasmine and exotic Karo-Karounde blossoms, all tingling with the rare essence of exotic Baie Rose. Pleasures reflects a modern woman’s desire to experience life’s little pleasures every day. The perfume was created by noses from Firmenich in 1995. Pleasures was created by Annie Buzantian and Alberto Morillas.
Chandler Burr listed it as a work of art in a recent interview with xovain, saying that Esteé Lauder Pleasures is “a great, great scent unfairly overlooked due to its Gwenyth-with-puppies ads.” Truth.
I’m sure some people find it boring, or trite, or conventional, but whenever I wear it, I can only smile. I bought it with that first paycheck, I took it on my first trip abroad and every time I smell it, I am instantly transported to seeing Parisian streets at the young age of 18, without parents, with only love and naiveté. With a healthy body, without cynicism, the whole damn world right in front of me. Isn’t it wonderful to remember how light and free everything was, whenever that time is for you - whatever age. I know many people aren’t lucky to have experienced a time of lightness, sweetness, perhaps that will come later in life, I hope it will at some point.
We are leaving for London tomorrow night, and I’m so excited! I marveled this morning at how grown up this is - we paid for our tickets ourselves, we didn’t *have* to go for work - and how amazing it will be to see the city again as a tourist, rather than a worker bee. I thought about bringing along Pleasures with me, but I think this trip will need a new scent, a new memory. Perhaps Honeymania will fit the bill - effortless, sweet, unpretentious.