Perfume miniatures: great gifts and tiny indulgences

Perfume miniatures: great gifts and tiny indulgences

By Alexandra Donaldson

The holiday giving season is typically full of grand gestures and big gifts, both of which are great ways to surprise a loved one or a friend. But why not think smaller—even miniature? As the adage goes, great things come in small packages.

We usually stock up on our favourite fragrances in 60 or 100 ml sizes at this time of year given the deals and gifts-with-purchase bargains to be had. Lately however, we’re captivated by perfume miniatures: mini bottles, rollerballs, pocket-sized oils and other petite perfume forms.

Whether you’re using fragrance miniatures as stocking stuffers or as a token of affection or appreciation for a friend or colleague, perfume is a sweet gift made all the more charming in toy-sized packaging. If you’re treating yourself this holiday season, a mini is also a great way to try something new without committing to the volume or the price tag of a regular-sized bottle. Minis are also an especially well suited way to indulge in limited-time-offer seasonal scents. Consider them practical too: A teensy bottle of your scent is, after all, considerably more portable than a jumbo glass flacon when you’re talking throw-in-your-purse beauty necessities.

Joyful by Escada suits this snowy, Joy-to-the-World moment with its fruity top notes (blackcurrant sorbet and mandarin), in addition to notes of violet leaves, sandalwood and pink peony. The bottle is long and thin and so ultra-portable, taking up about as much space as a pen.
Escada Joyful EDP, $31 (7.4 ml),

Saje Nautral Wellness has holiday gifting locked down. Its 100 percent natural perfumes are a treat for your nose, but they also encourage wellness by helping to alleviate ailments like headaches, indigestion and tiredness. For the holidays we’re taken by Saje’s newest offering—five new fragrance blends each offered in a rollerball package, accompanied by a healing mantra and accented with a unique gemstone. We’ve included two of the scents. Shanthi, which translates to “peace” and encourages serenity and tranquility, with jasmine, lemongrass, basil and essential oils; and Ananda, translating to happiness, is a “confident and whole” fragrance with notes of grapefruit, ylang ylang, sandalwood and juniper berries.
Saje Natural Perfumes Shanthi and Ananda, $30 (10 ml),

For a touch of luxury in a small package look no further than Vince Camuto’s scent. The gold box and ornate topper is finished off with a red ribbon that is perfect for the holidays—why bother wrapping? Hey, you could even display it on your mantle with your other festive décor. The fresh-woody scent also aims at the jetsetter lifestyle. It combines top notes of osmanthus nectar, which is similar to peach or apricot blossom, and is finished with notes of Bulgarian white rose, leather, jasmine, vanilla and patchouli. (It smells rich.)
Vince Camuto Vince Camuto EDP, $45 (30 ml),

For lovers of the unconventional, The Body Shop’s Red Musk is worth a serious sniff. The sensual musk perfume combines notes of pepper, cinnamon and tobacco—there’s not a single bloom to be had. Its size also seems a natural, given that this is a perfume oil instead of an eau de parfum, so a little goes a long way. Especially on a cold winter’s night, when you’re running from holiday parties to quiet cozying-up-by-the-fire escapes.
The Body Shop Red Musk Perfume Oil, $24 (30 ml),

With solid perfume, tiny is the way to go. Cult-favourite fragrance house Le Labo specializes in scents that are made-to-order. Its solid perfume is a wax formula (almond oil, coconut oil and soybean oil) that is scented with the extract of your chosen Le Labo perfume. The scented balm comes in a small, refillable metal cylinder and is perfect to toss in the tiniest clutch, gym bag or cosmetics bag without fear of leakage. Le Labo Solid Perfume by 6 By Gee Beauty, $85 (4 ml),,




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Deborah Fulsang has spent the last two decades as a journalist covering news and trends in the worlds of style—in fashion and beauty, design and décor, food and entertaining. Her long-held love of fragrance led her to launch The Whale & The Rose, a destination for all things perfume-related. Now, when she indulges in a crazy-expensive bottle of fragrance, she can do so guilt-free. Well almost. It’s all in the name of research after all.