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Carol’s Daughter Ocean EDT — Does It Sink Or Swim?


I’ve been rocking with Carol’s Daughter since founder Lisa Price was hawking her wares out of her kitchen in Brooklyn. Her Hair Milk, for one, has been a staple in my bathroom since the mid ’90s. Needless to say, then, Price almost feels like a distant relative — which is why it’s difficult reveal the ugly truth about her latest concoction (which, in essence, is what I’m doing through this review).

When I first heard about Carol’s Daughter’s new range of eau de toilette sprays, I figured they would be lighter, breezier versions of the fruity and sweet scents found in her famous Jamaican Punch, Mango Mélange, and Almond Cookie shea soufflés. And, in fact, the EDTs are available in Jamaican Punch, Almond Cookie, and Mango Mélange (so hooray to me for making accurate inferences), as well as the scents the Big Kahuna (a blend of Hawaiian white ginger, lettuce, herbs and white musk), Groove (a blend of red currant, cocoa and honey), Ecstasy (a mix of pineapple, white florals and musk), and Ocean (which I’ll discuss in detail below).

I was really excited to try the Ocean EDT since I figured it would get me in the mood for the warmer months ahead. I expected tropical fruit notes (maybe passion fruit, mango, guava or papaya) blended with lush florals (perhaps gardenias or jasmines), along with salty notes that would actually conjure up images of a beach setting. When I received the review sample, I opened it almost immediately and sprayed some on my wrists, awaiting for the scent to waft through the air. But to my dismay, this actually smelled like Peach Schnapps mixed with cucumber and cinnamon. In actuality, the fragrance boasts top notes of wet cucumber and watermelon, followed by a floral bouquet heart, and bottomed out with sweet musk notes. Truth be told, I found the scent to be pungent and not at all agreeable; like a canned piña colada drink, it sounded way better in theory.

Fortunately for me, I didn’t have to run to the shower to get the smell off since it faded pretty quickly — within less than a half hour, only a trace  of the scent was left (and it was mostly a floral aroma that was considerably more pleasant). But, of course, while this was welcome news to me, it wouldn’t be quite as fortuitous for someone who loved the fragrance and wanted a long-lasting experience.

For me, then, the Ocean eau de toilette jumped the shark. I’m sticking with the Pearls fragrance, folks!

Carol’s Daughter Ocean Eau de Toilette, $27. Available at CarolsDaughter.com

**A press sample of the product reviewed was submitted for editorial consideration.

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