Aestas is an interesting character. Neroli-forward scents have a tendency to go one of two ways - either super bright and cologne-like or into white floral orange blossom territory. Aestas edges its neroli in vetiver smoke leading into a cosy synth wood group hug.
Buen Camino is a perfume about pilgrimage inspired by Carter Weeks Maddox’s 600-mile-long walk on the 5,000 year old Camino de Santiago de Compostela. It’s a “psychotic fougere” that twists, turns and loses all sense of orientation, but ultimately provides comfort and reinvigorates a genre aching for new dynamism.
Buen Camino gathers scents from the last stretch of Camino after the toll of his exertions caught up with him and he underwent makeshift surgery from a kindly old nun. The smell from the bundle of dried Iberian lavender and immortelle she gave him to inhale for relaxation mixed with the odours of antiseptics and stiff bandages. The aroma of the hot asphalt of newly paved roads juxtaposed against the dust of the centuries-old, decaying Roman ones. And the simple joy of the Tarta de Santiago, Galician almond cake scented with spiced oranges and lemons served with espresso that he shared with his father who’d traveled to Spain to look after him on his final days on the trail.
Wearing Edhen is like watching professional ballet dancers pirouette across a stage. To you in the audience, their movements look so easy and effortless it’d almost be easy to forget the years of training it took to achieve them. Edhen is this perfect dance between its primary stars, fig and jasmine. Both aromas have a heady, voluptuous character; however, in Edhen they’re balanced with the lightness of a breeze meandering through a sun-drenched vista.
Elea is a space your nose may have visited before but its interior design elevates it into another level.
It’s a bright, well-pressed fragrance with squeaky-clean citrus notes, polished woods and suave musks. It’s the olfactory equivalent of an Architectural Digest cover featuring a California mid-century modern house designed with a minimal but spacious aesthetic where even the smallest details sport a considered, flawless finish.
Fantosmia is a perfume about a smell that only existed inside a perfumer’s head and his quest to recreate it. An exploration of textures; the cold and mineral juxtaposed against freshly extinguished heat filtered through shifting veils in an olfactory cat and mouse chase.
Top Notes: Black Pepper, Annatto, Cardamom, Pimento, Sisho Leaf
Heart Notes: Fennel, Cascarilla, Nutmeg
Base Notes: Oud, Mate, Castoreum, Saffron, Tobacco
A fragrant mash-up of the ancient and modern. Istanbul tips its hat to the big ambery perfumes of the early 20th century, but revamps them to fit into a 21st century modern lifestyle. Warm, viscous resins in a gentle whirl of lighthearted aromatics. Your jumper’s going to smell so good.
Real optimism is about more than just something to make you smile. It’s about more than just having a giggle. The top-to-bottom woods explored in Vaunt’s The Optimist is an uber intelligent spin on the subject that will make you think twice.
Woody smells make us think about trees. Trees are great. But, trees also have deep roots, they stand tall and reach way up into the sky. Trees are tenacious, strong and reassuring.
And that’s what The Optimist evokes for us. Mix in a dash of understated sophistication, and you’ve got one cracking perfume.
So, throw those shoulders back. Head up. Go get ‘em, tiger.
Tokyo is another story of incense taken outside the familiar church territory we’ve all probably smelled before. It’s a full-circle exploration of humid back streets leading to a sun dappled forest bath while chasing a tail of elusive smoke.