Cap: 1-5 cm; convex, becoming broadly convex to broadly bell-shaped or flat in age; dry; smooth at first but soon becoming scaly, the scales pinkish to reddish brown or brownish, usually concentrically arranged; the center typically remaining smooth and darker; whitish.
Gills: Free from the stem; white to buff; close.
Stem: 2-8 cm long; 2-5 mm thick; more or less equal; smooth; fragile; whitish but often darker towards the base; with a fragile, white ring (which may easily disappear) on the upper portion.
Flesh: White; thin.
Odor and Taste: Taste not distinctive; odor sometimes “not distinctive,” but typically distinctive enough get one’s attention. Gary Lincoff even invents the common name “Malodorous Lepiota” for the mushroom, describing the smell as “strong, foul, fishy or spicy.” Roger Phillips: “unpleasant, strongly fungusy or mild.” David Arora: “mild or sweet and fruity or pungent.” Alexander Smith: “pungent, spicy, to lacking.” The word “fragrant” often comes to my mind.
Spore Print: White. In Lepiota cristata var. viridispora, known from Pennsylvania, the spore print color is grayish green (like the spore print of Chlorophyllum molybdites).
Microscopic Features: Spores 5-8 × 3-5 µ; smooth; strongly to weakly dextrinoid; distinctively shaped like a wedge or a bullet. Cheilocystidia to about 25 × 10 µ; inflated-clavate. Pleurocystidia absent. Pileipellis a hymeniform layer of elements about 15-40 × 5-10 µ.