Ever wondered what makes the cut when it comes to a fragrance expert’s personal stash? Us too! Today marks the start of our Inside Our Fragrance Expert’s Fragrance Wardrobe series, a candid look at Thomas’ fragrance collection to reveal once and for all the favourites that he turns to time and time again. The first stop on the journey? The citrus shelf…
I’m not boasting, but I have a pretty extensive fragrance wardrobe. Scent is a hugely important part of my life and over my many years writing about perfume I have curated a selection of scent that really does allow me to have just the right thing for any occasion. Nothing gives me more pleasure than pondering what scent to wear, whether I am picking for a special occasion or just something exciting for day-to-day. As expected, my tastes shift throughout the season and I reach into different sections for spring, summer, autumn and winter, and now that the warmer weather appears to be upon us (fingers crossed) I’m definitely focusing on one genre more than any other: citrus.
What I mean by ‘citrus’ is any sparkling fruity or hesperidic note – the type that bubbles on the skin, makes the mouth water and keeps one feeling refreshed. In truth, citrus is an incredibly versatile genre, with citrus notes working their way into many other styles of fragrance, from orientals to ouds. My favourite citrus fragrances are not those that straight up citrus (because those never last for very long), instead I enjoy those that contrast citrus materials against other things, making for intriguing juxtapositions.
In this post, I’m delving into my personal fragrance wardrobe to showcase a selection of my favourite examples of citrus. Some are timeless classics, whilst others are more contemporary loves. All of them, however, are personal favourites and serve as proof that, when it comes to perfume, you can’t beat a bit of citrus!
Colonia by Acqua di Parma
Acqua di Parma’s classic Colonia has been featured in many of my Escentual posts and that is for the simple reason that it is not only a classic, but it is the flag bearer for Eau de Colognes. This fragrance presents a festival of citrus, with mandarin, lemon and bergamot coming together in a refreshing cocktail that balances sweetness, bitterness and tartness perfectly. The first spritz is like a bucket of water to the face – it’s that refreshing, but the magic of Colonia is its development and with time, the richness of flowers and herbs takes hold. The underpinnings are intense and animalic, with a masculine energy that is handsome and affable. So yes, Colonia is so much more than just citrus – it’s a classic!
Fleur de Figuier by Roger & Gallet
Fig is an unusual fruit and it has a vastly varied odour profile. Sometimes it can smell green and dewy, whilst at other times it can have a thick, milky texture that is sweet and jammy. Fleur de Figuier celebrates the gourmand aspects of fig with a candied fig accord that amps up the juicy, jammy and milky aspects of the fruit, contrasting them against pink pepper (for vibrancy), musk, patchouli and musk. The result is a creamy summer fragrance with a beautifully juicy feel. It’s a masterpiece and what’s more, it’s super affordable to so there is no reason not to have it in the wardrobe.
Citron Citron by Miller Haris
I would sum Citron Citron up as a breath of fresh air. Its signature citron note, which has a biting lemon vibe to it, has an almost cooling effect on the skin, perhaps due to the fact that it is paired with mint. The entire fragrance is about the harmony and discord found between citrus fruits and herbs. It starts fresh and sparkling, like a classic cologne, but actually warms up to something more like a mossy chypre in the base. I find it to be beautifully handsome, with a clean-cut vibe that begs to be paired with a nice shirt and tie.
Eau Dynamisante by Clarins
There is nothing more refreshing in the depths of summer than a spritz of Eau Dynamisante by Clarins. This is an undeniable fact. It is the crispest and coolest fragrance out there with a citrus bite that chomps its way through the stuffiest of days. Eau Dynamisante is an antidote to humidity – a sparkling sip of orange and lemon contrasted by the bitterness of patchouli and the green quality of rosemary. Petitgrain, with is aquatic floral tones pulls everything together and gives it a bubbly, effervescent feel. It’s a beautiful scent and a staple that should be found in every fragrance wardrobe, not just mine!
Eau Parfumee Au The Vert by BVLGARI
I’ve always seen BVLGARI’s iconic green tea fragrance as an essay in citrus as much as it is an ode to tea. Yes, this is the fragrance that created the green tea accord that so many other fragrance brands have copied, but it’s also a wonderful example of how a shimmer on citrus on top can really make a composition click. Bergamot is put to exceedingly good use in the top notes to bring an unexpected earl grey accord, whilst mandarin brings a juicier and mouth-watering feel. Together, these notes dial down any bitterness one would get from the green tea, rounding it out and making it more palatable. Eau Parfumee Au The Vert may be a green tea fragrance but whenever I dig it out of my collection, I always marvel at just how beautiful those citrus notes are.
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