I love the cheerful, summery scent of lemon verbena. Back when I used to garden, I always had a plant in with the other herbs. These days I settle for a nice splash of perfume. Today I am trying two bargain renditions of lemon verbena:
L'Occitane Verbena (Verveine in French; shown above) is a blend of lemon verbena, lemon tree and geranium. It has a nice fizzy start, mildly green and very crisp. The dry down is tart but sweet, and smells just like lemon sorbet. Just as I am starting to wish it was just a tad drier, the whole thing is over and it is time to reapply.
It is a simple fragrance, perfect for hot summer days, and if you can snag one of the glass spray samples, it is a great thing to keep in your purse. It doesn't last, but it is a very happy scent while it does, and it is reasonably priced. The Eau de Toilette is $40 for 100 ml. I could swear that they used to have a smaller size, but I don't see it at the store these days. It also used to come in a tin of solid perfume (cheaper, and great for layering) but that seems to have been discontinued. They do have a "cool stick" — a solid in a lip balm-like tube — but I've never tried it. There is also a body milk, shower gel, soap, hand wash, room spray, candle and scented shea butter.
Le Couvent des Minimes' Verbena & Lemon is very similar to L'Occitane's. It is perhaps slightly drier, and slightly greener. To my nose, it doesn't have quite the same sparkle, and although neither fragrance lasts for long, the Couvent des Minimes goes flat even faster. Like many lemon fragrances, it also has a bit of a household-cleaner vibe. I don't notice that with the L'Occitane, but I've seen the L'Occitane compared to Lemon Pledge many times so perhaps I am alone in that.
The Eau de Toilette is $28 for 100 ml, but you can get a 30 ml travel spray of the body splash for $5, and I can't see spending much more. Other products in the fragrance line include shower gel and body lotion.