Suzanne's Perfume Journal

Two from Sarah Horowitz Parfums'


Joy Comes from Within is described on Horowitz’s website as being “a transparent yet highly-textured fragrance that subtly emanates from the wearer much like true joy itself.”  And that’s actually a pretty accurate description, but, in addition, I also found it to be a delightfully quirky gourmand fragrance.  Nutmeg (a note I love) and almond combine in a bittersweet way that, when joined by the single middle note of orange blossom, reminds me of a Lazzaroni amaretti cookie: a featherweight macaroon, pungent with the essence of bitter almonds and lightly sweetened.  Those three notes are really the key players of the scent, but after a half-hour or so, when the base notes of vanilla, tonka bean and musk become more prominent, the fragrance goes through a shift where it starts to remind me of a creamy, ripe cantaloupe (the variety known as muskmelons, which do, in fact, smell musky).  Musk can be a difficult note for me, but in this scent I think it works really well and I absolutely love it.  On my skin, none of the notes are overwhelming: this fragrance has a subtle yet discernible sillage and great longevity. 

The first day I wore Joy Comes from Within, I thought it was charming, but nothing that I would seriously consider purchasing.  The next morning, however, I woke up craving it and could hardly wait to shower, dress and spritz it on my skin again.  I find it an accurate reflection of its name: joyful (even flirty) in a contented, laid-back way.  I’d recommend this to anyone looking for a beach scent that isn’t coconutty, as the almond and orange blossom combo does also lend a bit of a tropical beach lotion feel to it, too.  If an extra $95 magically turns up in my pocket this summer, this might just turn out to be my beach scent.

Beauty Comes from Within, on the other hand, is not anything I need, considering that I already own Chanel Chance, which this scent closely resembles.  The two smell almost identical in the initial stages, but whereas Chance retains a brightness all the way through to its drydown, Beauty Comes from Within steers a quieter, slightly creamier course, once its juicy top notes of sweet lychee, pineapple leaf, and tangerine encounter the floral heart of gardenia, stargazer lily and white rose.  One would imagine these heart notes to be a heady mix, right?  Surprisingly, they are not.  They are certainly detectable, but rather sheer; it seems to me that the gardenia and lily, in particular, are there to lend a velvety quality to the fragrance rather than their usual exoticism.  The white rose is the most well-represented of the florals in terms of aroma, endowing the scent with a soft rosy kiss.  Overall, this fragrance presents itself like a punch bowl at a polite garden party, where the top notes represent the fruity punch and the middle notes are the velvety petals that float in the punch as its garnish. Base notes of vanilla flower, sandalwood and tonka add further softness and silkiness to the fragrance’s drydown.

Most serious perfumistas would make short shrift of this fruity-floral.  It is the kind of girlishly pink fragrance that is better suited to the 20-and-under age group.  However, if I had a daughter who had a yearning for such a scent, I wouldn’t hesitate to buy her a bottle of this.  As the What Comes From Within theme suggests, this is a much quieter and more elegant fruity-floral than the kind most young girls are buying at the mall these days.

Sarah Horowitz Parfum’s What Comes from Within collection of fragrances can be purchased from Barneys New York,,, and other fine boutiques.  $95 for a 50 ml. (1.7 oz) bottle.

It never would have occurred to me to order samples of the two fragrances I’m reviewing today, as the names of them sound rather New Age-ish, and though I’m the kind of person who usually goes in for that sort of thing in other aspects of my life, for some reason, perfumes and New Age don’t mix in my mind.  Or maybe they do.  Maybe it was good karma that resulted in my getting complimentary samples of these scents tossed in with some recent purchases from Lucky Scent and Beauty Café, because otherwise I wouldn’t have tried them, and as it happens, I ended up enjoying one of these quite a bit.  They are from Los Angeles perfumer Sarah Horowitz’s What Comes From Within line of fragrances that she created in 2006.

July 6, 2008: 

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