Think:  ‘gin’.  Because – as with that spirit – the juniper berry adds a bracing, exhilarating touch to fragrances.  (When you smell gin, you’re basically smelling juniper, actually.)  It has a touch of pine to it:  a bit sappy, a touch bitter, but definitely fresh – and powerful, so it’s generally used in small doses.  The berries are harvested from a small, shrub-like tree which belongs to the cypress family.  It’s a harvest for patient souls:  juniper berries (which can be blue, red-brown or orange) take three years to ripen, and are steam-distilled to release their pungency.

Aromatherapeutically, juniper is used for arthritis, sore muscles, poor circulation and (when sniffed) as a ‘pick-me-up’ – and as a perfume ingredient, it certainly revs up a composition.  Thanks to its aromatic edge, you’re most likely to be intoxicated by it in ‘shared’ (or masculine) creations. Perfumer Christine Nagel – now working in-house for the Hermès brand – explains that juniper brings ‘freshness and sharpness’ to a creation…

Smell juniper in:

Cartier Les Heures de Cartier L’Heure Brilliant VI
Penhaligon’s Juniper Sling

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