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a fragrance trip through Marc Jacobs, Blush, Daisy, Splash and Lola
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Lola Marc Jacobs

Lola Marc Jacobs

Marc Jacobs first hooked my wee heart with the release of his first fragrance, Marc Jacobs, in 2001. I knew of him, had seen enough of his fashion to covet pieces in my "if I were skinny" way, but with that scent I fell in love.

On a colleague, Marc Jacobs smelled radiant, bright and breezy and feminine without being girlish. On my silly body chemistry, sadly, it went darker, sweeter, like some sinister nighttime version, which distressed me until I realized 20 seconds later that I could simply spray my clothing instead of my skin (a perfume no-no, but what's a girl to do when she loves a scent that doesn't love her back?).

I also fell hard for Blush, Jacobs' next fragrance, which was all about jasmine, and which I could actually wear – I even got compliments when I did. (I should have worn it more often; I've had my bottle so long the scent has turned, and now there's no replacing it, dang-it.)

Daisy is delightful, but doesn't work for me – somehow the youthfulness gets lost. Then came the splashes, which of course I adore because they're brilliantly light and easy for my body chemistry. I've been wearing a mix of Basil and Pear from last Spring's collection, and Lemon from earlier this year.

And now there's Lola in a beautifully quirky pair of bottles, a more complex offering of top and middle notes I like (mostly – peppercorn not so much, but I love the pear, grapefruit, fuchsia peony, rose and geranium).

Unfortunately, the dry-down notes don't like me. Vanilla, tonka bean and musk are my scent schoolyard bullies: they blithely ruin my fragrance fun in a way that leaves me no recourse but to avoid them most studiously. So Lola, for me, is another fragrance fail. Nuts.

I should say that I don't hold my body chemistry's failure to co-operate with parts of Jacobs' fragrance collection against him in the least. Rather, I'm annoyed with my body chemistry.

While I don't love Lola for myself, I do love my friend Lesa's interview with Jacobs for the September issue of Fashion magazine. In a Canadian exclusive, she met him in New York and got him talking about his peccadillos – his insecurities and how he "continues to fret about what to do next." Her story gives the designer's work great context, and had me reminiscing about my – er – relationship with each of his scents (obviously).

My favourite detail: the simplicity I love in Jacobs' first fragrance was about dipping a tentative toe into the perfume pool -- I'd thought it was just genius. Well, maybe it is.

Lola Marc Jacobs is available next month at Holt Renfrew, Sephora and Murale, and in October at drug and department stores. 50 mL, $79 CAN.