Back It Up


The first backup bottle, that first perfume that you cannot and will not live without, is a major perfumista milestone. The second backup bottle? Hey, we’ve all been there. The ninth backup bottle? You’re on your own, crazypants.

Your friendly neighborhood crazypants picked up nine bottles of Safran Troublant in the L’Artisan repackaging sale, and now I need you to make me feel better by telling me about your backup bottles. How many fragrances do you have backups for? How many bottles of each backup do you have? (Please, please say nine.)

To be completely honest, I feel significantly less horrified than I probably should. Safran Troublant has disappeared off the market at least twice that I can remember. That looming threat of discontinuation took a little joy out of wearing it. But now no one can take the most beautiful perfume in the world away from me! They’ll have to embalm me in it.


31 thoughts on “Back It Up

  1. The only backup I have is Santa Maria Novella Melograno, and I’m not certain why as it’s not going anywhere. I am always fearful, however, that I will fall endlessly in love with a limited fragrance.

    1. Then I’m even more honored to have one of your bottles of Melograno! It’s still very special to me- my very first Santa Maria Novella!

  2. 9?? That’s impressive! I bought a bottle of Safran Troublant from a Hautelook sale once, but I ended up swapping it away. Your deep love of it, however, makes me want to try it again. My nose is far more open to things at this point in my perfume journey!

    I have one partial BUB of California Reverie, since it was a great price and a fleeting enough scent that I could possibly work through a bottle or 2. I also have a partial BUB and a sealed in box BUB of Douce Amere in the 50ml export bottles. I probably going to sell one or both though, to fund the bottle of Ne M’Oubliez Pas that a friend just picked up for me in Paris. Priorities!

    1. Ooh! Congratulations on your fabulous new Ne M’Oubliez Pas! I’ve never tried Douce Amere, but I’d really like to- I usually like anise notes.
      Yes, I demand you give Safran T another chance! I am very proud to say that it is Arielle Shoshana’s #2 best-seller, propelled by the force of my love!

      1. When we meet up again, I shall bring you a sample! (assuming I still have any bottles of it!). And perhaps I’ll give Safran Troublant another go when I come across it again. 🙂 What’s your #1 seller?

        1. How exciting! Thank you! Maison Francis Kurkdjian Aqua Universalis is #1. It’s the first thing I grab when I hear the words “light”, “fresh”, or “clean”, and I hear those words a lot! 😉

  3. I’ve got a backup bottle of Paco Rabanne Calandre in the refrigerator. A second bottle of L’Artisan Parfumeur Nuit de Tubereuse will soon replace my nearly empty first bottle this summer. Hmmm, that means I’ll no longer have a backup!! Uh oh. If Byredo decides to discontinue 1996 I’ll start hoarding it. Maybe buy 9 bottles lol.

    1. Nuit de Tubereuse makes perfect sense to hoard. I hope you can find one of the gorgeous original bottles, with the creeping vines. 1996 is probably safe- I don’t think Byredo has discontinued a single fragrance so far!

      1. My first bottle is one of those beautiful vine ones!! As soon as I drain it I’ll leave it out of the closet just to admire it.

  4. NINE?! So YOU’re why I couldn’t find a bottle during the sale. 🙂

    I actually don’t exactly have any backups–not even Shalimar–though I did get a second J.Crew 57 rollerball when the prices were crazy low. It was mostly because the first one had leaked and was half empty when I opened it, but I couldn’t return it because I’d gotten it on sale (and really, for $6, I couldn’t justify complaining).

    1. Oh nooo! I’m so sorry! When I told them to “send me as many as you have left”, I was expecting more like three! 8 bottles is still probably enough to embalm me in, so let me know if you ever need one 😉

      Hopefully you’ll never need a backup of Shalimar, because it will burn eternal!

  5. Well, I don’t have nine of any one perfume. BUT:
    I have three L’Arte di Guccis, which I don’t need. I was going to stick with one backup, but somebody (Daisy? can’t remember, this was several years ago now) had bought one as well and didn’t love it, and I bought it from her. I would honestly rather have a bottle of MFK Lumiere Noire pf than that second backup L’Arte, so I’m planning to sell it and then come to you for the LNpf.
    And I have five bottles of Ralph Lauren Safari, all bought off ebay as “vintage,” but I think two of them are less good (maybe newer?), so I need to sell them too. And I have two mini parfum bottles as well.
    AND AND I have five bottles of Le Temps d’une Fete. In 2011, I killed a 30ml bottle (2009 vintage) because I loved it so much, and I bought another one, and then I decided that I’d like to have a big 100ml bottle, but when I bought it in 2013, it had been reformulated so I was bummed, and someone sold me her partially-used 2009 50ml bottle. Then when the news was it could no longer be bought at PdN, I bought two bottles from a discounter and was dismayed to find that it had been refo’ed yet AGAIN (b*stards!) and is now so light that it could rightfully be called “A Faint Whiff of Le Temps d’une Fete from Ten Yards Away.” All the same, too-thin LTdF is still better than no LTdf at all.
    There. I hope you feel better now. Mwah.

    1. SO much better! Just what I needed to hear! 😉 What a harrowing saga. I don’t see a single LTdF left online, not even at the discounters. It’s good to know those last few bottles went to such a loving home.

  6. Hey Arielle.
    There are a few backups around here. Of more than one I have 9+ BUBs
    Vintage: Shalimar, Mitsouko, Mahora, Vol de Nuit, Miss Dior, Diorissimo, Fendi, Blonde, Trouble, No 5, No 19, No 22, Joy, Opium, Y, Cuir de Lancome, L’Air du Temps, Niki de Saint Phalle, BaV.
    Modern: Truth or Dare, Ambre Russe, Mohur, A Quiet Morning, Ubar, Coco, Seville a l’Aube, Premier Figuer, Mitzah
    Yes, I’m fully aware of my illness.
    Thank you for letting me share, it’s a weight off my shoulders.
    Portia xx

    1. WE BOW DOWN! I wish I were smart enough to save my Cuir de Lancome like you, Portia. I sold mine when it was still plentiful at online discounters, and now it’s gone forever 😦

        1. Have you used FragranceX before, Farouche? I’ve bought from FragranceNet plenty of times, but no experience with FragranceX.

        2. Yes, I have. They were good as I remember, although they don’t have the big discounts that FragranceNet does. I am on their email list, which is how I found out about the Cuir de Lancome availability.

  7. True confession: I bought, I think nine bottles of Mitsouko in 2005 when the oakmoss ban was hanging over us. Further confession: I ended up swapping all those bottles away. And finally: Now I regret it. Obviously my judgement is not to be trusted.

  8. The only perfume for which I have back-ups is Aromatics Elixir. I have at least 3 minis to use (good old gifts with purchase), two unopened bottles (gifts from my sister), and I recently found a half -full bottle at a thrift store. That juice has darkened and is extraordinary. Aromatics Elixir was my signature fragrance in the 70’s and has always had a place in my heart, even when I started to wear other scents.
    So, not quite 9, but given its half-life, enough to last even if I lived to be 130.
    Back-ups of Shalimar could start turning up in the perfume cupboard as well.

    1. May you live to 130 surrounded by your lovely Aromatics Elixirs! (After all, aren’t elixirs supposed to be good for your health? 😉

      1. Indeed, Aromatics Elixir was marketed with that bent and it came in a bottle the colour of brown apothecary glass.

  9. I have three backup bottles of Cuir De Lancôme and no shame whatsoever, only a sense of security and a vague wish I’d bought even more. Funnily enough, I have been debating with myself for most of the past week as to whether I should to buy a FB of Safran Troublant. I am regarding your column as a sign from the deities of perfume that I must do so AT ONCE!

    1. Yes! That sense of security is exactly what I feel, too. And what could be more worthy of multiple backups than Cuir de Lancome?

      I like to think that the perfume deities are very pro-Safran Troublant. 😉

  10. I’m joining the crowd with my backups of Cuir de Lancome and Safran Troublant. I also have backups of Seville a l’Aube, Acqua di Parma Profumo, Chinatown, and Premier Figuier Dry Body Oil. (one backup only of each)

  11. I didn’t know this was a milestone. I’m proud of myself now. I have one backup and that’s it, but I’m sure over time you can help me add more. 🙂

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