When it comes to perfume I’m lucky because I rarely need to choose it for myself. My boyfriend has great taste and usually chooses something for me – and I always love it. If he didn’t I wouldn’t wear any for months on end; I’ve always been overwhelmed by the number of perfumes available and I always struggle to choose a favourite.
However for my birthday this year I got some money and decided to choose a new scent on my own. I used to love Jo Malone’s Pomegranate and almost bought that again, but I’m a perfume commitment-phobe and the prospect of something new tempted me away.
It’s taken me two months to decide, but whilst waiting for a train at St Pancras International on Saturday I popped into Boots and finally made a decision. I love the depth of Chanel perfumes so naturally I gravitated to those bottles, and rather quickly found myself drawn towards Chanel Chance Eau Fraiche.
Although it has the depth of a traditional Chanel perfume, Chance Eau Fraiche has a refreshing smell and doesn’t feel too heavy. It has top notes of Citron and Water Hyacinth and I think it’s the Citron I’m drawn to; both Aqua Di Parma and Issey Miyake feature Citron in some of their products, which funnily enough are the two brands I associate with my boyfriend (he wore Aqua Di Parma when we met and six years later he wears Issey Miyake).
I’ve always found scent evocative and hold onto all my old perfume bottles as just one whiff can take me back to the time when I first wore them. From my early teenage years wearing Dolce and Gabbana’s Light Blue (a scent I still love) to Eau Des Merveilles by Hermes (hello first grown-up job) just one sniff sets me off down memory lane.
I’ve worn Chanel Chance previously and when I smell that it just reminds me of life as it is now, which is nice as I can’t deal with bouts of nostalgia every day. Chanel Chance Eau Fraiche is a variation of Chance, and like it’s sister it lasts twelve hours, works well as a day perfume and makes me feel special every time I use it. A spritz in the morning wakes me up and if I could bathe in the stuff I would. I literally cannot get enough of the smell (if you see me smelling myself, sorry) and the only thing that smells better to me right now is bacon… How very un-Chanel.
I’m really excited to launch a new series of posts called Tech Tuesday! The content will be a mixture of how to guides and posts that take a look at some technology related issues. This week I’ve decided to talk about my Clinique live chat experience which I hope you’ll find interesting.
My Clinique live chat experience
Live chat software is a funny kind of animal. I’ve always felt that live chat exists to make a brand look customer focused, which is great in theory and disappointing in reality. More often than not the employees managing a company’s live chat interface are not given the same authority as other members of the customer service team; if no differentiation between the teams has been made clear to the customer, it’s almost always going to be a negative experience.
I spent a lot of time using Virgin Atlantic’s live chat offering earlier this year, trying to understand if and how we could rearrange our flights to America after I broke my leg. My experience was bad because nobody behind the computer had the authority to do anything, including answering basic questions. That’s not acceptable when your live chat service is portrayed as an alternative to a phone call. Virgin Atlantic’s representatives were always polite but their only purpose was to direct you to an expensive phone number, but only after you’d gone round in circles for twenty minutes.
Last week I found myself on Clinique’s website, pondering whether to buy a new facial toner. I’m familiar with Clinique products and used the facial toner in question a few years ago, but I really needed some advice about whether it was currently the best thing to use on my skin.
Despite previous negative live chat experiences, l saw there was a live chat facility on their website and decided to give it a go. After saying hello I asked ‘Sam’ whether the facial toner in question was suitable for my skin type. Instead of replying ‘yes’, Sam asked me a few questions and we went back and forth for a while before she recommended a different product entirely – which happened to cost less than the product I was thinking of buying.
What I liked most about this live chat experience was that it mirrored the customer service experience I’ve received in-store at a Clinique counter previously. This is absolutely key – it is essential that brands considering a live chat facility ensure they can deliver the same level of service that their customers have come to expect from them offline. Considering skincare is predominantly a face-to-face issue, I was really impressed with my experience online and Clinique have maintained my trust.
What I liked about my Clinique live chat experience:
A photo and brief biography of the consultant you are speaking to is available for you to see before your Clinique live chat experience starts.
Two types of chat are available on Clinique’s website – one with experienced online Clinique consultants for skincare queries and one with the customer services team for technical issues and order queries.
Unique answers! I quizzed Sam about the product she suggested and her response was unique to my situation.
Have you used live chat software before? Which brands are doing it ‘right’?
There are roughly three New Yorks. There is, first, the New York of the man or woman who was born here, who takes the city for granted and accepts its size and its turbulence as natural and inevitable. Second, there is the New York of the commuter — the city that is devoured by locusts each day and spat out each night. Third, there is the New York of the person who was born somewhere else and came to New York in quest of something. Of these three trembling cities the greatest is the last — the city of final destination, the city that is a goal. It is the third city that accounts for New York’s high-strung disposition, its poetical deportment, its dedication to the arts, and its incomparable achievements. Commuters give the city its tidal restlessness; natives give it solidity and continuity; but the settlers give it passion.
Here is New York – E.B.White
Oh what can I say… I will always find an excuse to worm a gem from Here is New York into a piece of writing.
Anyway, this post is really about a Financial Times article (Life & Arts section, naturally) that looks at creating attractive cities. Rather than looking to the future it compares a number of cities around the world and attempts to briefly identify what makes them beautiful. My favourite part of the article is the list of Edwin Heathcote’s ‘Beautiful moments in cities’.
His ‘beautiful moments’ take place in London, Istanbul and Lisbon, amongst others. I disagree with each of his suggestions which is simply wonderful as I truly believe that when we describe a city as beautiful, we are referring to our own special moment of beauty in a set urban space. It is personal, subjective and we believe it with unwavering conviction.
As a little project I’m working on a list of my own personal moments, and will share these soon. For now I would love it if you could inspire and educate us with your suggestions, so please share your own ‘Beautiful moments in cities’!
Autumn might almost be over but as the pavements are covered with beautiful leaves I thought I would take one last shot at celebrating my favourite season. It’s been a while since my last Pinterest Finds so I hope it has been worth the wait!
I love London during Autumn, when the mornings are foggy and there are golden leaves on the ground. I love walking down the street with the cold air pinching my cheeks – there is no need for blusher in this weather! I like eating soup for lunch and dinner and painting my nails a deep, dark red. Getting the nice boots and a winter coat out of the wardrobe (or treating myself to something new). I love the scarves, drinking in front of the fire in a pub, baking homemade apple pies and cosy nights in with Midsummer Murders on the television.
Happy Sunday all and sundry. I hope you all had a great weekend? I spent mine celebrating a family birthday. It was great to spend time with everyone and some family friends too; ended up being a lot of fun with a few surprises thrown in along the way.