Reset your senses with Molton Brown’s NEW Wild Mint & Lavandin

Get ready to reset your senses with Molton Brown Wild Mint & Lavandin – a totally new (and completely contemporary) take on the classic fougère fragrance…

 

Firstly, forget everything you think you know about lavender – there’s nary a trace of the dusty, somewhat old-fashioned note in Senior Perfumer Nathalie Koobus’ creation for Molton Brown. Instead, she used lavandin – a far greener, fresher, and more powerful raw ingredient that’s infinitely preferred by those noses who create fine fragrances.

Secondly, rethink all you’d assumed about the fougère – that classic character found in fragrance families since 1882, and perhaps also one of the most overlooked. The time was ripe for a revival from its ultra-trad (dare we say ‘fuddy-duddy’ perception by some?). But it took the always fashion-forward house of Molton Brown to masterfully reinvent it, with the launch of their new Wild Mint & Lavandin collection.

Koobus explains she wanted to ‘…capture the forest walks in my home of Provence, where nature’s invigorating air of verdant herbaceous shrubs is edged by purple fields of lavandin.’ Think bright but lightly frost-tinged air, the silvered ripples of a crystal-clear stream, the sense of nature surrounding and emboldening you to take an off-grid adventure in the heart of the forest. And the fragrance takes further surprising twists depending on your choice of Wild Mint & Lavandin Eau de Toilette or Eau de Parfum.

 

 

The EDT revives flagging spirits via wild mint, the vivid verdancy of freshly torn basil leaves grounded by a caress of orris, silky sandalwood and rounded by tonka bean.

Molton Brown Wild Mint & Lavandin eau de toilette: £85 for 100ml

 

 

 

For the EDP, meanwhile, Koobus balanced the coolness of mint with a touch of nutmeg as the counterpart amidst the supporting notes – the resulting tingle of warmth its distinctive signature.

Molton Brown Wild Mint & Lavandin eau de parfum: £120 for 100ml 

Molton Brown’s first foray into fougère a rugged coastline, bottled, via the marine-tinged Coastal Cypress & Sea Fennel collection. Wild Mint & Lavandin ventures further off the beaten path by beckoning us to explore the further inland. Whichever format you plump for [and here’s a fabulously soul-reviving Bath & Shower Gel [£25 for 300ml) as part of the collection, too]; Wild Mint & Lavandin is an utterly unisex, fragrant invitation to get back to nature, with Molton Brown’s finger firmly on the fragrant pulse.

 

Written by Suzy Nightingale

Step into Les Jardin Français with Officine Universelle Buly’s vegetable-inspired scents

As we predicted last year in the (now Jasmine award-winning!) article for The Scented Letter Magazine, How to Spray your Five-a-Day, vegetable plots have been a place of much inspiration for perfumers. Now, there’s a whole new bumper crop of L’Officine Universelle Buly Les Jardins Français fragrances to explore and enjoy – and we promise, you’ll really dig them…!

‘The French Garden’ is a new collection of six fragrances from L’Officine Universelle Buly that garland vegetable notes with flowers and musks, all giving off a morning dew freshness. The launch happily coincided with the publication of our own garden themed latest edition of the magazine, The Perfumer’s Garden – because really, ever since the pandemic, it has all been about how much we get from our gardens and green spaces we can access for our mental health; how they inspire us all.

‘A garden is like a perfect universe,’ agrees Buly’s co-founder, Victoire de Taillac (pictured in her own garden, below). ‘A paradise. A haven… Gardening means being outside in all weathers, with all your sense awakened. The smells come together and surprise you…’ Also taking the senses by surprise are combinations like Indian Cucumber and Syrian mint, offering ‘crazy minty joy’, in a cloak of musk, and Iraqi Beetroot and Egyptian Rhubarb, tethered to the earthiness of patchouli. Or enjoy that note du jour, geranium, adding an extra dash of green to Oriental Watercress & Sardinian Parsley.

 

 

 

 

 

Some of the notes (like rhubarb, carrot and cucumber) have been used for many years by noses in their creations, while others seem more peculiar at first: sweet potato? It seemed incongruous, but oh it works amazingly well! They all do, having been expertly blended to achieve an almost photo-realistic encounter at first sniff, which then melds with your skin to become the fine fragrances they truly are. Basically put, no matter which you plump for, we promise you will NOT end up smelling like a soup or bowl of salad!

The project began when Buly co-founder Ramdane Touhami bid on an antique seed box in an auction. Having won it, he wondered if these precious seeds collected over hundreds of years could still be planted. Sadly that experiment didn’t flourish, but it did plant the seed of an idea: what if their next fragrances could reflect the love we all had for our gardens and green spaces during lockdown? A scented escapism in every spritz?

 

“Les Jardins Français” brings back to life an intoxicating and unique palette of garden fragrances. They all seem to be seized by the morning dew during a morning stroll through the vegetable garden and orchard, between rows of plants coming from the farthest ends of the world, acclimatised since Antiquity by patient monks, meticulous collectors and erudite healers, all genius gardeners and gatherers. Like a miraculous harvest in a universal garden, with freshly raked paths adorned with rare flowers, these armfuls of familiar vegetables and simple herbs, these aromatic and sunny delicious bouquets delight the senses and the heart.

 

 

 

 

Les Jardin Français is available online at www.buly1803.com and at their Selfridges counter: £145 for 75ml. La Sizaine collection of six x 9ml travel perfumes is also available for £108. The perfect way to sample the while collection (because you will need to smell them all!)

Since the launch of the fragrances, there’s been another crop of newness with Savon Superfin soaps and the divinely moisturising Lait Virginal to complement. One thing’s for certain – this growing L’Officine Buly Les Jardins Français collection is un-beet-able. [Apologies]

Written by Suzy Nightingale

Sumptuous Summer Candles…

Yes, candles for Summer – it’s a vibe! Forget thoughts of only saving scented candles for cosying up in Autumn and Winter (although, the British weather, lately, has reminded us of those seasons). Here’s our round-up of sumptuous candles to bring joy and light into your life for the rest of Summer, even when the weather isn’t playing along…

 

 

 

 

La Montana August Sunset £39 for 220g

Conjuring visions of a blissful Summer evening spent in the garden, the heat of the sun dispersing as the sky becomes suffused with melting colours, and the scent of the blooms yields to the cooler night’s air. A heady haze of orange flower, rose and geranium meet fennel-flecked rockrose in this Summer stunner.

 

 

Paul Smith Daydreamer £65 for 240g

For blissed-out moments of perfumed pondering you can do no better than to light this, sit back, relax, and let your thoughts wander where they will. Fragrant meanderings are via head-clearing verbena, calming clary sage and a late Summer’s breeze carrying drifts of bee-buzzed lavender and sun-warmed hay.

 

Cochine White Jasmine & Gardenia £45 for 230g

Evoking a Summer of exotic climes (or memories of them), all the lush floral scents that infuse the sun-filled streets and gardens of Saigon are packed within. Blooming as it warms, wafts of white petals – jasmine, gardenia and peony – combine to unfold an enchanting aura that is soft yet effortlessly elegant.

 

 

 

 

 

Byredo Summer Rain £64 for 240g

A sudden Summer downpour heralds a relief of emotions with that sudden release of freshness, a verdant awakening with wet trees, dripping foliage and the coolness of the air slicing through oppressive humidity. The luxuriant, renewed greenery of basil is garlanded by a gasp of spearmint; richly grounded in tonka.

 

 

Stories No. 2 Trio £95 for 3 x 70g

Reflecting the top, heart and base notes of STORIES Nº.02 original fragrance, this candle trio are fragrant facets – inspired yet not identical, with some creative tweaks. Light one at a time or all at once for a memory-filled barefoot stroll through dewy grass, a drift of pipe smoke, the silvery ripples of a stream.

 

 

 

 

 

Diptyque Citronelle £56 for 190g

Repelling mosquitoes in the most deliciously opulent way, this candle will certainly attract welcome Summer visitors. Luminous lemongrass infuses its uplifting, soul-reviving scent into smile-garnering verbena, luscious neroli, and heady orange blossom. A delight at any time of day or night: the scent of Summer.

 

 

Ostens Illumination Jasmine £65 for 220g

One of those candles whose scent is such exquisite quality you almost hesitate to light it, worry not: the fragrance will suffuse a room even unlit, and once the wick is alight, the sheer beauty of that LMR-bottled night-blooming jasmine (hand-picked near the Nile Delta) truly shines. Its gorgeousness is unsurpassed.

 

 

 

 

Ruth Mastenbroek Blooming Wild £45 for 220g

Like running headlong into a Summer’s meadow, this flower-filled candle is all the exuberance of a Summer fling in scented candle form (though will last far longer than many seasonally-transient relationships). It’s a whole field of blooms, plus snapped stems and crushed leaves adding verdancy. Joyous!

 

Written by Suzy Nightingale

Fragrances for the Wimbledon finals (and the rest of summer!)

Although it’s the last of the tennis, there’s the rest of summer to make the most of – so we’re celebrating with scents that evoke the excitement of a popped cork, glasses of chilled bubbles shared with friends, picnics with Pimms, making the most of sitting in our gardens (or escaping to the nearest green space) whenever we can, and eating our own bodyweight in strawberries.

It’s been a bit of a mixed bag of a summer, weather-wise, and with everyone seemingly as exhausted as dehydrated bumble bees who need to be spoon-feed sugar syrup and placed gently within a hollyhock to recuperate, it’s surely time to wear something which lifts our spirits, adds a certain zing to our day, and allows us to appreciate the here and now?

 

Psst! Don’t forget you have until midnight on Sunday 16th July to enter our Wimbledon Legends prize draw, to win a huge bundle of Montblanc fragrance prizes!]

Meanwhile, with with 70 days of official summer left in the northern hemisphere, why not try these happy-making scents for size…?

 

Memoize London Vita

Piquant pepper, cool cardamom and a sizzle of saffron enliven the juicy fruits that drench the heart of this summer-tastic scent. A hazy drift of incense tickles sun-warmed strawberries lapped by creamy milk, and the woody dry-down billows engagingly for hours. Bliss!

£177 for 100ml eau de parfum in our shop

 

 

 

Paco Rabanne Invictus Victory Elixir Parfum Intense

Urging us to push our limits and celebrate victories (even if that means putting your shoes on the right feet currently, we feel!) a sublime blend of Provençal lavandin’s sliced through with green cardamom, while Indonesian patchouli envelops addictive tonka and vanilla.

£71 for 50ml eau de parfum boots.com

 

 

 

Maison Margiela When the Rain Stops

There’s at least one moment during Wimbledon (or the BBQ you’ve been planning for ages) when, inevitably, the heavens open, but at least we can revel in the scent of ‘petrichor’ so beautifully evoked here via dewy Isparta roses and mossy, rain-washed, lung-clearing air.

£55 for 30ml eau de toilette theperfumeshop.com

 

 

 

MALIN + GOETZ Strawberry

Banish thoughts of sickly sweet versions of a strawberry scent, this is ‘deconstructed’ and reimagined – a freshly picked garden strawberry with stalk attached, shafts of pink pepper and bergamot given a floral flourish by orris root, jasmine petals and soft musks.

£78 for 50ml eau de parfum malinandgoetz.co.uk

 

 

 

 

 

VYRAO I AM VERDANT

Sprouting acres of mown grass and green verges with every spritz, cyclamen joyously bursts through the undergrowth, swags of moss-bedecked ivy draping the powdery comfort of iris, and bergamot bolstering the brightness of orange flower absolute. Smiles, bottled.

£135 for 50ml eau de parfum selfridges.com

(Try a sample in the Vyrao High Five Set for £79)

 

Written by Suzy Nightingale

Olivier Pescheux R.I.P

It was with great sadness we learned of Master Perfumer Olivier Pescheux’s passing. A loss made deeper still by the fact he was just 57, and should have been making fragrances long into the future. Many of us have Pescheux to thank for our most treasured fragrances – scent memories that will live on indefinitely.

We might spend many hours listing and talking about all the fragrances Olivier Pescheux created (and we hope you wear them and will talk about them within your own circle of friends in the coming weeks, to honour his legacy), but of course the focus often goes on the best sellers – incredible blockbusters such as Paco Rabanne 1 Million, which has consistently been one of the best selling fragrances in the world since it was launched, and should be on every perfumista’s list to try.

Pescheux also made some of our favourite Diptyque fragrances – including Tempo (one of the finest patchouli fragrances you can buy, no question), and Eau Capitale, which is a modern classic rose in every sense of the phrase. He also created Montblanc Explorer, and Versace Eros Flame – further fragrances which became legends in his own lifetime. And yet, according to all his colleagues and friends, he remained incredibly humble, full of generosity and good humour.

 

Just some of Master Perfumer Olivier Pescheux’s creations

 

Givaudan, the fragrance creation house Olivier worked for, released a moving statement, honouring Pescheux on their Instagram, alongside a handwritten formula which, it turns out, was the very first he’d created for them. Givaudan said:

‘It is with deep sadness and profound emotion that we announce the passing of Olivier Pescheux, on July 10th in Paris, France, at the age of 57, after fighting against a long disease.

Well-known for his elegant and luminous olfactive writing, Olivier Pescheux has been at the origin of countless successes such as Paco Rabanne 1 Million, Dior Higher, Lacoste L1212 Blanc, Diptyque Eau des sens, Fleur de peau and Orphéon.

“Olivier immensely contributed to shape today and tomorrow’s perfumery. He was loved for his warm and friendly character, his generosity and his boundless artistry. Olivier will be deeply missed.” said Oriol Segui, Head of Fine Fragrance Europe.

We found one of Olivier’s fragrance formula dating from 2009, published in Les Echos Série Limitée, which was about imagining the fragrance of the future. We share it with you on this occasion as a symbol of his creativity and his poetry.

Rest in Peace
We love you!’

 

Olivier Pescheux’s first formula for Givaudan

Givaudan also included a message from all of their perfumers and teams who worked with Pescheux, saying:

 

‘Dear Olivier,
We all shared and loved your sense of humor, your light-hearted yet profound approach to life, a style and elegance that we also find in your marvelous creations.
We’ll always remember your humor, your smile, your luminous gaze.
We all send our love
The Givaudan Perfumers and Teams’

 

 

 

Elsewhere on social media, perfumer Mathilde Laurent replied with her own memories of Olivier Pescheux, recounting the fun she had spending time with him and (as she put it) ‘playing perfume’. Nathalie Feisthauer was among many fellow perfumers posting pictures of Olivier, saying: ‘Olivier Pescheux a friend and a Colleague. Sad day (will miss you).’

Hugely prolific, immensely talented, already much-missed, Olivier we add to the messages from perfume lovers pouring in from around the world, and say:

Thank you for the scent memories…

 

Written by Suzy Nightingale

 

Perfect pool party perfumes

Okay, the weather is v unpredictable here in the U.K. but we are buckling down and hoping for the best (as ever) so have set our sights on perfumes we could wear to a pool party. Now, we realise that it might be more likely a paddling pool set up than a Miami poolside scene, but these are also perfect for taking on holiday (or for wearing during drizzle to perk up your spirits!)

So, with the cocktail trend for scents in mind, let’s get those inflatable pool toys ready and pool party perfumes on…

‘Make a splash with Lime Mojito, a vibrant scent from the DKNY Be Delicious Pool Party collection. Inspired by the trendy summer cocktail, this refreshing, fruity floral fragrance invigorates and energises the senses with a dance of zesty bergamot, Italian lemon and mandarin. Dewy honeysuckle transitions the scent into an addictive mix of modern musk and blonde woods warmed by the summer sun.’

DKNY Be Delicious Lime Mojito £36.99 for 50ml eau de parfum theperfumeshop.com

 

 

 

For fellow gin-lovers, this is now an absolute classic – a crisply refined cocktail on a pleasingly debauched base of black cherry, soft leather, crytalised brown sugar and exotic amber. To be splashed with abandon and relished at leisure. Penhaligon’s say: ‘This eau de toilette is a complex cocktail. Better make it a double.’ We totally agree, and always have a bottle to hand during the warmer months!

Penhaligon’s Juniper Sling from £80 for 30ml eau de toilette penhaligons.com

 

 

 

Alive with Asian aromatics, tingling like a ginger martini, the sun-kissed mandarin squeezes sweetness onto ginger’s vibrantly quenching, just-grated spiciness. Wrapped in the golden glow of amber, it has us dreaming of digging our toes into sand, sipping cocktails at sunset, and closing our eyes in the blissfully balmy air caressing our skin. We’re madly spritzing this until a pool party actually happens.

Goldfield & Banks Ingenious Ginger £138 for 100ml eau de parfum selfridges.com

 

 

 

Presented in the most whimsically joyous ‘cocktail glass’ bottle, you’ll certainly be the life and soul of the pool party wearing this unusual blend of sweet and savoury notes, designed to keep your senses alert, so we’re told! Popcorn, black pepper and chestnut smooth their way to a cheerful floral heart, the intriguing mix all underpinned by plumptiously creamy vanilla and a soft white woody base.

Pepe Jeans Celebrate For Her £39.95 for 80ml eau de toilette superdrug.com

 

 

 

 

Did you ever sip a Blue Moon, that cult beachside 90s party cocktail? Kilian Hennessy clearly feels it’s time the intoxicating blend of lemon, vodka and blue curaçao was revived; he recruited Sidonie Lancesseur to remix it in scent form, adding a whoosh of organic ginger essence from Madagascar for spice, a swirl of Ambroxan, which laces the limited edition blend with a warm yet mineralic feel.

KILIAN Paris Blue Moon Ginger Dash £185 for 50ml eau de parfum libertylondon.com

 

Written by Suzy Nightingale

Explore Vyrao via their soulful Discovery Set

If you’re seeking a more soulful connection to your scents – beyond merely smelling lovely, wearing a fragrance that reaches deep into your soul, somehow – then it’s the perfect time to try the first five Vyrao fragrances with their High Five Travel Set. As they explain… ‘Each of Vyrao’s fragrances fuse master perfumery with energy healing elements using organic, natural ingredients chosen for their specific emotional qualities, giving each scent its own distinct vibration.’

Yasmin Sewell worked for years in the high-powered, fast-moving fashion industry, first as a buyer and then creative director, guiding such names as Browns, Chloe, Mulberry, Farfetch and Liberty. Yasmin also took young designers under her wing – now world-famous names like Acne, The Row, Christopher Kane, Roksanda, and J. W Anderson. Quite frankly, she was at the top of her game and one of the most respected women in the fashion industry; so what caused this seismic shift to scent?

 

 

 

 

Well, in 2019, Yasmin had what she describes as ‘an aha moment.’ It was a realisation that she needed to create her own space, to focus on the creative ideas that had been bubbling beneath for so long, and most importantly, that ‘energy needed to be the source of my brand.’ A long-time believer in therapeutic and energetic medicine, Yasmin explains that with the concept of energy as her main mantra for creating the brand, it quickly became obvious as to how this energy could be shared. Says Yasmin, ‘Channelling it came first, what it’s channelled into came second. So we started with fragrance.’

For Vyrao, it’s all about wearable good vibes, and anyone who’s had a sluggish day or simply felt dull, blah and down in the dumps can attest – spritzing a scent can be an instantaneous remedy and our sense of smell is a potent way to make us feel brighter, more confident, and ready to face the world. And obvs they smell INCREDIBLE, having been composed by the brilliant British perfume legend that is Lyn Harris. As Yasmin explains:

 

‘Vyrao is the world’s first wellbeing brand to fuse energetic healing with master perfumery. We make good feelings…’

 

If you’re new to this more soulful way of wearing scent, the High Five collection really is the best way to dip in and gain a better understanding – both of what you like, but also (more importantly) what your soul is crying out for. It may surprise you… Included in the first five fragrances from the brand, you will get to experience:

  • Free 00: To feel alive and uninhibited is Free 00.
  • I am Verdant: A fragrance sprouting fresh green growth.
  • Witchy Woo: Wake up the powerful alliance of your courage and creativity.
  • Magnetic 70: For attraction and protection.
  • Georgette: For self-love.

Raving about the scents in her so-influential column, journalist India Knight described them thusly:

I Am Verdant, which smells like it sounds: super-green, full of hope, like waiting for spring, before the greenness goes slightly mossy and orange blossom and citrus kick in. Georgette is a very woody and peppery rose that is also powdery, and even though I don’t really like rose scents I found it soft and oddly comforting. Witchy Woo, by contrast, is full of orris, spices, patchouli and musk and is woody, ambery and — hard to explain why I think this but I do — slightly magical. Vyrao says to wear it to encourage courage and creativity.’ She continues…

‘Free 00 is a much airier affair that smells of summer holidays, in a good and even original way, or maybe of driving somewhere sunny in a convertible with the roof down and your hair streaming behind you. Lemon, jasmine and vanilla, to be crude and reductive, but done in a way that is both airy and exhilarating (this one promotes “liberation and sensuality”, in case you’re wondering, and I totally get why they’d say that). Also, Magnetic 70, which smells of vetiver — God, how I love vetiver — cedarwood and frankincense, among other things… here I could mostly smell incense and intense woodsiness, like being in a quite special church that you have stumbled on by accident.’

You can read even more about Vyrao’s olfactory origin story in our page dedicated to the brand, but might we suggest the best way to really get to know them (and in doing so, reveal your own true scent character), is to dive in to the collection via the Vyrao High Five Set – so perfect for holidays and on-the-go good vibes, too!

 

 

 

Vyrao High Five Collection, £79 for 5 x 7.5ml eau de parfum designed to transport you emotionally…

Wedding Anniversary Scents [Part Two]

Following on from our feature on the first five wedding anniversary scents, based on the symbols traditionally used to mark their occasion, this week we are continuing the theme with a look at years six through to ten, each rendered in fragrant form.

Now, these scent suggestions aren’t merely for those celebrating to give each other as gifts (though of course that’s a lovely idea!) but as jumping-off points for some new perfumes everyone should explore. Which symbol and year takes your fancy in these fragrances…?

 

 

6th Wedding Anniversary – Sugar

Scent Suggestion – Memoize London Humanitas

According to weddingplanner.co.uk the reason sugar is the symbolic offering for a sixth wedding anniversary is because ‘…now your marriage is getting really sweet! Six years is the perfect time to indulge in some sugary treats or go out for tea and plenty of cake.’ Might we suggest a longer-lasting gift would be the sweetness captured in fragrant form (but definitely not tooth-rot-inducing)?

This emotional scent memory-capturing house evoke deep-seated fragrant connections to our innermost feelings, here swirling joyously fruity top notes of lusciously piquant passion fruit, juicy peach and fresh orange zest into a heart of powdery iris, addictive heliotrope, gorgeously waxy magnolia, rose and lily. The abundant bouquet of floral notes sits so perfectly atop the warmth of the base: amber crystals, musk, silky Indian sandalwood, Kashmirwood all dusted with icing sugar that feels as though it dances in the air.

£177 for 100ml extrait de parfum in the shop

 

 

 

7th Wedding Anniversary – Wool

Scent Suggestion – Electimuss Mercurial Cashmere

Wool keeps you snug and warm – as does the love you and your partner provide for each other’ offers the wedding planning website. They continue: ‘Some cosy clothing or throws make great gifts for year seven.’ Indeed. But make sure it’s not seven year itchy! We’d suggest investing in a scnt you could both share and adore (if you feel generous enough, that is, once you’ve smelled this…)

A fragrance to ride with us amidst a marriage’s moods, maybe? ‘The most popular of the gods, Mercury was adored for his irresistible charm and wit and the inspiration for this sensuous and seductive scent.’ With an alluring character, the cloud of cardamom-flecked iris swirls to the buttered warmth of tonka and amber touched by cashmere’s creamy caress. Especially good at granting you backbone and strength, we say: wear this fluffy, irresistible scent and feel better for every possible perfumed mood-swing!

£225 for 100ml pure parfum electimuss.com

 

 

 

8th Wedding Anniversary – Salt

Scent Suggestion – BDK Sel d’Argent

Salt provides flavour in every meal; here it represents the fact that your love is a necessity in your life, adding flavour. We have to admit we’re a little stumped for gift ideas for this one – try a set of luxury salt and pepper shakers, or cook a delicious meal for your partner (with just the right amount of salt!).’ Well, we think most couples have salt shakers by their eighth year together, and offer a more creative suggestion, here.

Cast away thoughts of old-fashioned 90s beach scents and allow your dreams to drift to this blissful, contemporary evocation instead. Close your eyes and imagine the salty kiss of warm skin, a sheer, breezy orange blossom shot through with the zesty, uplifting sparkle of grapefruit and crunchy green galbanum. It’s the scent of sunlight dancing on waves, somewhere fabulously expensive. Perhaps this could be your ‘second honeymoon in a bottle’ scent? Or, if you’re feeling truly moved to celebrate, why not book a romantic seaside getaway to accompany the fragrance?

£155 (at time of writing, on offer for £108.500 for 100ml eau de parfum harrods.com

 

 

 

9th Wedding Anniversary – Copper

Scent Suggestion – Commes des Garçons Copper

‘Like a 9-year marriage, copper conducts and generates heat. Gorgeous copper cookware would make a great gift for a 9th wedding anniversary – or if you are more artistic, perhaps a sculpture.’ Again, we’re going to go all out on a limb and say we think the majority of couples who’ve been married nine years probably have cookware coming out of their ears and would welcome more cupboard space. We’d go for this modern beauty, instead.

A scent like no other, the design house continued their exploration of un-tapped sensorial scents in Copper, with perfumer Alienor Massenet creating an ethereal gleam that feels like alchemy on the skin. Going from ultra-green sap-laden notes of verdant new shoots it segues into a brightness of blackcurrant softened by tobacco leaf and a tingle of ginger. As it warms further, the deliciously smooth base notes emerge – rich vanilla rippled with glowing amber and resinous myrrh. It’s quite a thrilling journey – just like the best relationships can be.

£120 for 100ml eau de parfum harveynichols.com

 

 

10th Wedding Anniversary – Tin

Scent Suggestion – Elementals Metal

‘A decade of marriage is an incredible achievement. The use of tin as a symbol of a 10th anniversary comes from the fact that tin is durable, does not corrode and is used to preserve food. With metal, gift ideas can either be practical – home ware or cookware – or more decorative like vases, engraved goblets or candle holders.’ Yes, okay. Practical can be good. But to celebrate a decade of being together? Let’s try creative…

This soul-led independent scent house say the inspiration here was that ‘…Metal is about wisdom, true leadership and introspection. ELEMENTALS Metal sparkles with the brilliance of courage, strength and inner wisdom.’  There’s a metallic glint here, too, which so beautifully cuts through the ‘innovative marriage of pungent herbs and spices’ as they put it. We particularly love the beautifully balanced birch tar that simply swoons into the arms of white blossoms. Both emboldening and romantic, it’s the scent to reach for when you realise how far you’ve grown together.

€165 for 100ml eau de parfum elementalfragrances.com

 

Written by Suzy Nightingale

A festival of fragrances: what scents to wear this summer?

Now summer’s properly arrived, it’s festival season a go-go in the U.K. Each one has its own character, and there’s something for every taste – so we thought a perfect pairing would be to match the events with an accompanying fragrance that echoes the festival’s vibe.

Tune in, spritz on and bliss out with these…

 

 

Isle of Wight Festival (15 – 18th June) + Ostens Patchouli Heart No.II [Try it in the Ostens Discovery Set, £40 for 6 travel-friendly samples]

With PULP, Blondie and the Manic Street Preachers as notable headline acts, there’s always been a laid-back cool to this festival, which presages many of the later music events following on. Choosing a scent with a suitably nonchalant chill to it is essential – trying too hard here will simply earn you a raised eyebrow of disapproval. This isn’t Coachella, darling, so ditch the heels and stick with a scent that rocks the vibe. Ostens Patchouli Heart No.II is elegant authenticity personified, incorporating breezy cypress, a tingle of ginger, and billowing violet with sheerly gorgeous woodiness.

 

 

 

Glastonbury(21 – 25th June) + 4160 Tuesdays Flora Psychedelica £50 for 50ml eau de parfum

The mother of all music festivals in the U.K. really, it’s become infamous for the likelihood of torrential rain at some point during the event, causing national newspapers to splash ‘mud-bath larks!’ type photos across their front pages. Originally the place for hippies to hang out and get groovy, the price of tickets nowadays ensures a more middle-class crowd. We suggest wearing a truly indie fragrance that evokes the far out spirit of 1960s, with this ‘iris on a bender’ scent, incorporating mushroom-y weirdness with floral crowns and absinthe for a truly trippy encounter.

 

 

 

Latitude (20 – 23rd July) + Manos Gerakinis OMEN [try in the Manos Gerakinis Discovery Set, for £30 for 6 transportive samples]

Pulp are playing here, too (busy reunion tour, this year, with cult jewellery brand Tatty Devine even dedicating a range to their iconic songs), but for this ex goth, it’s all about the comeback of Siouxsie (of Banshees and, later, Creatures fame). As the queen of the dark side, I feel she, and all festival-goers who are moved by the music, would appreciate this creation, inspired by a Delphic oracle who enters ‘…a state of delirium by inhaling the vapours emitted by the sacred chasm beneath the temple.’ Spiritual smokiness swishes leather, amber, oud and ambergris in fabulous fashion.

 

 

 

Camp Bestival (27 – 30th July) + Floral Street Sunflower Pop from £28 for 10ml eau de parfum

This is a family-friendly gathering that always draws an artistic crowd, and yes there’s great music, but it’s more about a lifestyle celebration. With sustainability at the core of its ethos, and always keen to showcase independent companies, I think a great match would be with the booming British brand, Floral Street. Here, they’re inspired by Van Gough in a scent which vibrantly fizzes with fresh mandarin, Calabrian bergamot, and accords of vegan honey and Bellini cocktails. It settles to a smooth, nuanced warmth, with a scented sunset that feels timeless. Happiness in every spritz!

 

 

 

Womad (27 – 31st July) + Maya Njie Les Fleurs [try it as part of the stunning Maya Njie Discovery Set £34 for 5 pocket-friendly samples]

Founded in 1980 by the musician Peter Gabriel, this festival proudly celebrates world music, with the Womad Foundation now creating opportunities for cultural learning and sharing via artists all over the globe. A vibrant expression of togetherness, I think artist, perfumer and founder Maya Njie’s Les Fleurs (named for Minnie Ripperton’s 1970 song) perfectly incorporates music, here, as an inspirational medium. Rippling with bergamot’s brightness, a mellifluous magnolia and ripe fig, it’s an ‘unbound celebration of life, love and creation’ which brilliantly sums up the festival’s spirit.

 

Written by Suzy Nightingale

Scents for summer wedding anniversaries: Paper, Cotton, Leather, Fruit & Wood

One glance at social media or magazines is enough to know that Summer is all about wedding fever, and instead of following the usual path of suggesting fragrances for those getting married, or their guests, this year we thought it would be far more interesting (and relevant for more people!) to look at traditional symbols of the first five wedding anniversaries and match them to gorgeously summery scents.

It doesn’t matter if you look at these to purchase for yourself, or as a gift for friends and family you know are celebrating – whatever the reason (even if there’s no anniversary at all), these fragrances are stunning enough to warrant your further investigation.

 

 

 

 

So, how did the whole wedding anniversary symbol thing begin? It is thought that wedding anniversaries have long been celebrated with particular symbols pertinent to the year being marked. The tradition is thought to have begun in the Middle Ages, which the wedding venue Gosfield Hall rather solemnly remind us is probably because ‘…in those days, a lot of people didn’t live long enough to reach these milestones, so it was something to celebrate if they did.’ Nowadays the embittered cynics among us might ponder if the tradition continues apace because many marriages don’t live that long, so every milestone is worth noting. But let us banish such poe-faced reflections and focus instead on the always happy-making topic of fragrance, instead. Here are the first five such milestones, with descriptions of the symbols via weddingplanner.co.uk, and suggestions for the most suitable scents to celebrate…

 

 

 

1st Wedding Anniversary – Paper

Scent Suggestion – Diptyque L’Eau Papier

‘One year of marriage is symbolised by paper because a new marriage is like a blank sheet of paper and still delicate. It also helps that it offers budget-friendly gift ideas, as a couple in the first year of marriage might still be managing their budget after the wedding!’

What is the scent of paper? That’s how every Diptyque creation begins: a blank sheet, a pen, ink, ideas. Fabrice Pellegrin was tasked here with conjuring up diluted ink and artistic brushstrokes. Powdery mimosa and white musks are mistily ethereal, with a rice steam accord adding to the sense of paperiness and roasted sesame for the inkiness. Alex Waline’s pointillist label completes a modern masterpiece that couldn’t be more Diptyque if it tried.

From £90 for 50ml eau de parfum diptyqueparis.com

 

 

 

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2nd Wedding Anniversary – Cotton

Scent Suggestion – Juliette Has a Gun Musc Invisible

‘Traditionally your second wedding anniversary is represented by cotton. This is because the threads of you and your partner’s lives are becoming ever-more interwoven, like making cotton (cute, right?).’

‘A fluffy scent as comfortable and unfussy as your favourite old jeans,’ Romano Ricci promises with this powdery-musk bliss. ‘As appropriate at work as on a casual date.’ We’d wear this anywhere, to be honest, it’s simply sublime to snuggle up to, dreamily blending radiant jasmine absolute with almost nose-tinglingly soft cotton flower, resting on a featherbed of soul soothing white musk. Want a scent to wear every day, not only for an anniversary or special occasion? This could be your new go-to.

From £90 for 50ml eau de parfum Johnlewis.com

 

3rd Wedding Anniversary – Leather

Scent Suggestion – MEMO French Leather

‘No, that’s not why! Leather was traditionally used as a protective layer against bad weather, so the third anniversary is about security and shelter. Leather is also long-lasting, as your marriage will be.’

Deceptively nonchalant, this is a leather to wear when you want it to be your saucy little secret rather than up front and personal for all to see (and smell). The leather here is subtly slipped in to a bouquet of roses, with a background of lime, pink pepper, clary sage, juniper and a rounded, woody base. We see this being shared by couples who love a G&T, and enjoy communicating via exaggerated pouts and deftly arched eyebrows.

£230 for 75ml eau de parfum harveynichols.com

 

4th Wedding Anniversary – Fruit & Flowers

Scent Suggestion – edeniste Love Lifeboost™

‘At four years your marriage is blossoming and ripening, so it is represented by fruit and flowers…’

Having worked with top neuroscientists to prove the efficacy of the way our brains react to the scents, this one proffers ripe cherries, green leaves, radiant jasmine and tuberose with a duo of roses feel like a wearable giggle of delight, the smooth, woody dry down a hug that keeps going. We also adore the the description the house gives this scent, saying it’s ‘A gesture of scented self-care that twists the traditional ideals of love…’

£68 for 30ml eau de parfum in our shop

5th Wedding Anniversary – Wood

Scent Suggestion – Cochine Tuberose Absolute & Sandalwood

‘Wood is the symbol of a five-year marriage because of its source: trees. Trees are a symbol of strength, wisdom and time – all things a solid marriage has. Trees also have roots and at 5 years your marriage is now deeply established.’

Passionately luminous, this glows with happiness! Exclusively created with master perfumer, Maurice Roucel, this is the scent of exotic and unforgettable nights. Feminine, alluring and intriguing tuberose notes combine with rich leather and sandalwood in this intoxicating, utterly addictive fragrance. Inspired by travel and long summer evenings in the tropics, our unique fragrances capture the very essence of romantic escapism.

£110 for 50ml eau de parfum in our shop

 

Written by Suzy Nightingale