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I would smell the same mystery fragrance whenever I'd go past the makeup counters in my local Boots, and fell in love with it. After a month or so I'd pinpointed the aroma to Lancome's latest perfume release; La Vie Est Belle.
To cut a boring, rambling story short I bought a bottle for myself, then I wrote a review for it on Boots and, for unknown reasons, they then sent me another bottle for their product review panel. So now I have plenty of the stuff, and have worn it reguly - warm weather, hot weather, cool weather, cold weather, day and night.
The concept for La Vie Est Belle is centered on the idea of natural and simple beauty, freedom from conventions and the choice of one's own vision of happiness. The fragrance is a kind of outlook on life, inspired by joy and pleasure in small things. Lancome apparently made 5000 versions of the perfume, before selecting the final version that is on store shelves.
The pear is the strongest fruit note on me - well, I say strongest, but it is still pretty soft and doesn't leave me with a lasting impression. There is soft vanilla present through all of the fragrance too, with adds a creamy sweetness and warmth to the fragrance and quickly overpowers the quiet fruit notes. The patchouli is also quick to develop, so whilst everything is sweet, it's not cloyingly so.
The floral notes used are powdery and just provide a background for the iris - I think there is some rose and peony present too, but everything is too soft to separate. It's quite startling how, after around two hours, the fragrance suddenly changes from a soft gourmand to present the wearer with a rich iris note. I don't have much experience with iris in perfumes and relied on Prada Infusion d'Iris to help me identify the scent note here, so LA VIE EST BELLE is unique to me in the note's inclusion.
After another few hours the fragrance turns slightly nutty and even creamier as the rest of the praline in the base develops and uses with the vanilla note. Whilst the iris note dies down after a few hours, the combined powderiness of the rest of the floral notes remain and softly fade away with the base notes after around nine hours on my skin.
Official scent notes: Orange blossoms, jasmine, black currant, pear, iris, tonka bean, praline, patchouli and vanilla.
You'll definitely get your monies worth with LA VIE EST BELLE - it wears very well, and is a strong perfume so only needs a light application. I apply it in the morning and can still smell it at the end of the day. I sprayed some on a tank top a few weeks ago, and I'm get a nice draft of fragrance whenever I open the drawer it's in.
I prefer wearing this in colder weather, as the vanilla and praline notes don't seem as strong on me during this time of year. As LA VIE EST BELLE has some strong keynotes and a sweet drydown I wouldn't wear it on warmer days, as it can become cloying.
I can comfortably wear LA VIE EST BELLE whenever I want [during the day, casually and for work] - over these colder months anyway. And other people like it too, so I don't feel that it is invasive to others. In spring/summer I have occasionally worn it on special occasions in the evenings, but I find it to be a bit too much for day to day wear.
I have to say this is probably not a perfume I would have been necessarily drawn to if I were shopping for myself. Something about the proportions of the bottle seem off to me so initially just based on looks it wouldn't have been something I was drawn to. That said I was thrilled to receive it as a gift, as I am with any new perfume I've not tried before.
This perfume comes in a round clear glass bottle with a clear plastic square lid. There is a lovely slate grey ribbon around the neck of the bottle and the pump of the bottle is a silver coloured metal. The pink liquid sits inside a dip inside the bottle, creating this large heavy bottom made from pure glass. It makes it look like one of those very expensive heavy glasses because of the bottom. Personally though I think it throws the proportion off and as far as I'm concerned it makes it seem like you get far less than you actually could give the size of the bottle.
The colour scheme of the bottle, however, is very pretty and feminine and quite modern in the design. I find the first thing that hits you when you smell it is an overpowering sweetness which I personally find a little bit saccharine. There are undertones of fruity flavours and a definite hint of vanilla, these are combined with a powdery floral aspect. I find all of these fragrances combine to become overly sweet and insipid.
The top notes are blackcurrant and pear which account for the fruitiness you get at the beginning. The heart notes are iris, jasmine and orange blossom which give that powdery floral scent. The base notes are patchouli, tonka bean, vanilla and praline. I think it is unusual that a perfume does not have wither a spicey, woody or musky base as these scents give the perfume body and depth and cut through sweetness. That is what is missing from this perfume and that is what leave it being overly sweet and a little cloying.
This perfume retails at between £30-£50 depending on the size you go for and as with anything there are always deals to be had. I like to purchase my fragrances at duty free personally but when you can't do that there are usually offers online.
Overall, this is a nice perfume but there are too many things wrong for me. Too sweet, weird bottle and the price is high.
~La Vie Est Belle~
Released : 2012
Fragrance family : floral/fruity gourmand
La Vie Est Belle is the newest fragrance release from French beauty company Lancome. La Vie Est Belle was created by perfumers Anne Flipo, Olivier Polge and Dominique Ropion over the course of three years. The promotion campaign was fronted by actress Julia Roberts. This fragrance is said to focus around the idea of 'natural and simple beauty'. This fragrance is made up of 63 ingredients with almost 50% being completely natural ingredients.
La Vie Est Belle is available in an eau de parfum. There are matching products available including a body lotion and shower gel. The different products can be used alone or together to form a more concentrated and long lasting scent on the skin.
The bottle design of La Vie Est Belle is said to be a remake of a much older Lancome bottle. I personally think that the bottle is simple yet very elegant in appearance. It is almost rectangular in shape and is made of clear, thick glass which curves in at parts giving it a more feminine feel. The pink tinted liquid doesn't fill up the whole bottle as there is a thick glass part at the bottom. The bottle is finished off with a square lid and little fabric scarf around the neck. Stylish and attractive but not over the top.
As with other fragrances, La Vie Est Belle has been created using three sets of fragrance notes.
*Top notes offer the initial burst of fragrance - pear and blackcurrant
*Heart notes form the main body of the fragrance - orange blossom, jasmine and iris
*Base notes complete the fragrance - patchouli, vanilla, tonka bean and praline
~Price and Availability~
La Vie Est Belle is available online and on the highstreet as it is a new release. The prices are quite similar across the different stores but it is often worth searching for discounts or free gifts.
Stockists include Boots, The Perfume Shop and House of Fraser to name a few. Any Lancome counter in department stores are likely to stock this. Expect to pay the following prices :
*30ml - £39.00
*50ml - £56.00
*75ml - £70.00
I am a fan of the Lancome brand in general and quite like a lot of their fragrances. I have admired La Vie Est Belle since it was released a few months ago. It started with a the odd spray at my local Lancome counter to owning a vial sample. I was addicted to it and had planned to purchase a bottle at some point. I actually now own a miniature bottle which I received in my gorgeous Lancome advent calender. Since receiving my miniature bottle, it has been worn almost as regularly as my new bottle of Chanel Coco Mademoiselle.
La Vie Est Belle is by far my favourite Lancome fragrance to date. It is of a premium quality and whilst it may seem very expensive, it is well worth the high cost. It is such a stunning fragrance which I consider to be a very special fragrance and one to treasure. I own a dab bottle and find that I only need to apply a small amount of EDP to my skin to allow it to be noticed by others around me.
La Vie Est Belle has a favourable strength. It is quite a rich, deep fragrance from the moment it is applied to my skin and would certainly be overpowering if too much was applied at any one time. The initial aroma radiates from my skin perfectly. The sweetness of the blackcurrant and pear is undeniable - succulent, naturally sweet and almost powdery smelling which gives the fragrance a unique twist. Unlike many top note combinations, La Vie Est Belle isn't fresh and vibrant. It is definitely more warming and sophisticated.
Between 1-2hours after application, the scent of La Vie Est Belle changes and the heart notes develop at a pleasant pace. Iris is said to be the commanding fragrance note here but I find the floral notes to be so well blended that the iris doesn't really come through on its own very well. The addition of jasmine combined with the sweetness of the top notes allows this fragrance to hold a confident, warm sensual feel which is definitely appealing.
Whilst the subtle floral notes linger elegantly on my skin, a different sort of sweetness starts to become noticeable. I recognise it right away - vanilla. It comes through really early on in this fragrance and is simply addictive. It really does make the entire fragrance sweet and feminine but not too youthful. The vanilla is still there as the soft floral heart starts to disappear and another layer of fragrance shines through.
La Vie Est Belle is quite concentrated at this point and sits beautifully on my skin. The base note combination does remind me of Thierry Mugler Angel thanks to the patchouli, praline and vanilla but at the same time, this fragrance has its own character. The other fragrance notes compliment the natural, sugary sweet vanilla perfectly. The fragrance remains warm and is very comforting. There is a very delicate earthy, woody type undertone which does take a little bit of the sweetness away from the stunning vanilla. The whole combination is delicious and almost food-y in aroma.
La Vie Est Belle is beautifully feminine and in my opinion, would suit anyone aged 20 upwards. It is perfect for wearing during the colder evenings or special occasions as it really seems to unique and special for dousing yourself in everyday. Some may feel the sweetness is a little much but I personally adore the way that they sweet notes are presented. The fragrance never becomes overbearing or cloying.
La Vie Est Belle is mainly noticeable by those around me for around 9 hours which I find amazing. The fragrance develops at a smooth and steady pace and smells stunning for the entire time that it is on my skin. It lasts longer on clothing. I personally love being able to detect this on my skin at bedtime as I find it to be rather comforting and soothing. I often notice a subtle trace of this fragrance on my skin the day after applying it - it lasts for ages! It is a luxurious fragrance which is perfectly layered and a delight to wear.
La Vie Est Belle is one of the better Lancome fragrances. It has everything - a gorgeous bottle, a stunning fragrance and impressive staying power. I really cannot fault it. I'm hoping to buy a full size bottle or receiving one for my birthday in March as I really do love this fragrance. I have received compliments whilst wearing it as the fragrance radiates around me like a cloud of scented heaven!
Thanks for reading :)
I first tried the new Lancôme fragrance release, la vie est belle, when I received a free sample vial of it through the post. I obviously liked it as I went out and bought a full bottle (in a gift set) about a week later after trying it a few times.
This fragrance is a floral gourmand which I would say is pretty sweet and strong. On first spray I was immediately struck by its similarity to Viktor & Rolf's Flowerbomb as they both have the same sweetness and boldness. In my opinion La vie est belle is quite a powerful scent that makes a statement and it's not really a light and delicate floral for every day.
To give a full picture of this scent, according to the Perfume Shop, the notes are as follows:
Black currant and pear
Iris, orange blossom, jasmine
Tonka bean, praline, patchouli, vanilla
Personally I think that sometimes I get a definite aniseed type note coming through after a little while, and I cannot claim to be able to detect the supposed black currant and pear in the top notes. The scent is just like a general wave of sweetness and flowers. I think it has a slight powderiness to it too.
As it is so strong, I have found this is one where less is definitely more. One day I sprayed it a bit too liberally and then went into a heated class room and I felt like the scent was radiating everywhere, which I didn't really like. Just one spray of this is sufficient for me. It lasts all day and it's sillage is huge - it can definitely be smelled by others without them having to come up close.
I would say this is a perfume which requires a bit of confidence to wear and it is quite a mature scent. I guess they have hinted that it is a bit more mature by using Julia Roberts as the face of the campaign rather than a younger celebrity. I could not really see a young teen pulling this fragrance off. I think this is a good one for winter nights out.
The bottle is simple and stylish, with a chunky heavy bottomed glass bottle, which is very slim from the side on and which shows the pale pink perfume inside. It has a little silver ribbon around the neck which apparently are supposed to look like wings. Personally I do like the name and packaging.
La vie est belle is a French expression meaning life is beautiful / 1 / A philosophy of life and happiness or universal declaration to the beauty of life / 2 / An Eau de Parfum with the noblest ingredients (Concrete of Iris Pallida, Jasmin Sambac Absolute, Orange Blossom Absolute, Patchouli Essence / ) lain on a bed of fine delicacies / 3 / Unique olfactory signature exclusively created for Lancome by three of France's leading perfumers /