Sunday, 10 June 2012

Fragrance Review: Flora by Gucci Glamorous Magnolia

My parents have recently returned from an epic 9 week trip overseas. Whenever anyone in my life goes overseas and leaves me behind, they are given a wish list of presents to bring me back. As my parents were going to Paris, naturally I asked for perfume. I was quite vague in my request - I just asked for a floral, preferably white flower and left it up to mum to choose. She came home with Flora by Gucci Glamorous Magnolia.

Flora by Gucci Glamorous Magnolia is one of five spin off fragrances of the original Flora by Gucci that make up the Gucci Flora Garden collection. According to Fragrantica, the Gucci Flora Garden collection includes five most important blossoms outlined on the legendary Gucci scarf designed by Vittorio Accornero for Princess Grace of Monaco.

 Legendary Gucci scarf designed by Vittorio Accornero for
Princess Grace of Monaco that the Fora Garden range is
inspired by (image from Gucci Facebook)

The five new editions are: Glorious Mandarin, Gracious Tuberose, Gorgeous Gardenia, Glamorous Magnolia and Generous Violet, which were launched in May 2012.

L to R: Gorgeous Gardenia, Gracious Tuberose, Glorious Mandarin,
Generous Violet, Glamorous Magnolia

Gorgeous Gardenia
  • top notes of red berries and pear
  • heart notes of gardenia and frangipani flower
  • base notes of patchouli and brown sugar accord
Gracious Tuberose
  • top notes of violet leaves and peach
  • heart notes of tuberose, orange flower and rose
  • base notes of rock rose and white cedarwood
Glorious Mandarin
  • top notes of mandarin and peony
  • middle notes of jasmine and pina colada accord
  • heart notes of ambergris, white musk and creamy wood
Generous Violet
  • top note of violet leaves
  • heart notes of orris and violet petals
  • base note of suede accord
Glamorous Magnolia
  • top notes of freesia, green leaves and citrus zest
  • heart notes of peony and magnolia
  • base notes of musk, sandalwood and warm chocolate accord

Before I commence my review of Flora by Gucci Glamorous Magnolia I have two confessions. Firstly, I have no idea what a Magnolia flower smells like. When reading up on other reviews of this fragrance there are mixed opinions as to whether this smells like Magnolia. Some state that there is no hint of Magnolia whilst others are saying that it smells just like their Magnolia tree in full bloom. If you are specifically after a Magnolia fragrance, you will need to sniff this one yourself. My review will be based on my opinion of the fragrance rather than it's likeness to Magnolia.

My second confession is that I have never smelt the original Flora by Gucci so I have no idea how similar or different this fragrance is from the original. So, again my review will be on this as a stand alone fragrance.

Description: Fragrance contains Freesia, Magnolia, Sandalwood (Warm Chocolate) and symbolises feminine beauty. Inhale the aroma to give and receive love.   

  • top notes of freesia, green leaves and citrus zest
  • heart notes of peony and magnolia
  • base notes of musk, sandalwood and warm chocolate accord

  • The notes I first detect after spraying this perfume are an orange citrus plus a creaminess. the creaminess fades quickly allowing the orange citrus to take over. The orange citrus is not sharp, like citrus can be. I think the underlying floral cuts through the potential harshness of citrus leaving a sweet juiciness instead. I cannot specifically detect freesia or green leaves in the top notes although there are definitely floral notes. My initial impressions of this fragrance is that it is a sweet fruity floral.

    As the top notes fade, on me after about 5-10 minutes, I am left with a generalised floral scent with a faint creaminess in the background. This is where the magnolia is meant to appear so perhaps that is the floral element I am smelling.

    After about 3 hours the floral middle notes have all but disappeared leaving the creamy base notes. I can detect musk, and the creaminess I attribute to the warm chocolate. It is not a distinct chocolatiness ie you don't finish up smelling like a chocolate bar. It is more of a sweet, warm creaminess.

    A few of the reviews I read of this fragrance described it as sugary sweet or sickly sweet. I don't know whether this was based on sniffing it off cardboard or from their wrists but I did not detect this at all. There was definitely some sweet fruity notes initially and the dry down had a creamy sweetness but on my skin it was not an overpowering or sickly sweetness.

    I found this to be a very wearable daytime fragrance. It does not make enough of a statement, nor was sophisticated enough to be an evening fragrance. It is a beautiful fragrance but not a particularly striking one - you will smell lovely wearing it but I don't see someone stopping you in the street to ask what you are wearing. I found it to be a light hearted fragrance. Flirty and fun. It is definitely more of a spring and summer fragrance; hence, why it was released in May in Europe. With the cold weather we are experiencing now, I find myself craving a heavier fragrance - still a floral as that is my thing, but a warm spicy floral.

    I have only been wearing this perfume on my wrists. With Kiki feeding so often I thought it would be cruel to spray perfume all over my chest, which doubles as her dinner plate! If I just put one spray on my wrist I find that it lasts a maximum of 3 hours on me. I can still faintly smell the dry down but others couldn't. Today I tried two sprays  and now, five hours on, the fragrance is still detectable though is fading. So, it has decent longevity when applied liberally - enough to just about get you through the work day.


    I have to to say that this is one of the more beautiful bottles in my (extensive!) perfume collection. To me, the hexagonal bottle with a clear glass lid looks really classy. It's almost a shame that I store my perfume in their original boxes in the cupboard - but as beautiful as the bottle is, it's not the reason I buy a fragrance so I am not going to risk destroying it in sunlight.

    The Gucci Flora Garden collection is available in 50 and 100ml EDT. Gardenia, Magnolia and Tuberose are available in Australia from David Jones - 50ml $109, 100ml - $161. I believe that Mandarin and Violet are only available from Gucci stores in 100ml bottles.

    Have you tried the original Flora or any of the Flora Garden collection? Which one is your favourite or which do you most want to try? I am now on a mission to sniff Generous Violet!

    What is your all time favourite floral perfume (I am always after a good recommendation) or if florals don't float your boat then what is your favourite fragrance?

     All opinions are my own and I received no remuneration for this post. This perfume was provided to me by lovely mother and possibly also my darling father, though perfume makes him sneeze so I am not sure how much imput he really had!