What an Unusual Fragrance?

Christmas is a key time for the perfume industry, and we are bombarded with advertisements for the big-hitters like Chanel, Dior and Marc Jacobs.  Now you may not be a fan of these recognisable fragrances, but I am sure you can a least see the appeal to others and even buy them as gifts. I sell artisan fragrance for a living, and there are key groups of scent: the most popular scents being the Flower, Citrus or Woods groups, I could go into this in more detail, but I’m sure you get the basic idea, as there are many groups and sub-groups that classify perfumes.

There are many weird and wonderful perfumes, many I haven’t smelt, and in truth, I did think some of them were jokes and not actually real. However, or unfortunately these are actual scents! Sometimes, you like the idea of a perfume that’s different and no-one else has (or would want) and if this is the case, there are several perfumes houses that fulfil that requirement.

Demeter was conceived in 1996, with a unique and ever- expanding perspective on fragrance.  The original mission was to capture the beautiful smells of the garden and nature in wearable form. Made from 100% natural ingredients and fragrance oils derived from natural sources, the Demeter name itself was inspired by the Greek Goddess of Agriculture. The first three fragrances were Dirt, Grass and Tomato and were sold in a few stores in New York. Today, the Demeter Fragrance Library consists of over 300 different fragrances inspired by everyday objects and experiences. One of the things that makes them unique is that all Demeter fragrances are single note fragrances, meaning they are the smallest combination of ingredients that expresses an olfactory idea. The notes are linear, which means they express their olfactory nature immediately and do not change over time, in the way that a blended perfume with several notes does, i.e. top, middle and base notes. Their aim is the following:

We create environments where people can rediscover the wonderful world of scent that is too often overlooked or forgotten in our modern, multi-tasking world. That is because great fragrance, quite simply, makes for a better day.  Ultimately, we want nothing less than to change the way fragrance is used throughout the world. We isolate and highlight the beautiful scents that surround us every day, in wearable formats.

Whether this has been achieved, well, I’m not too sure about that, but certainly their fragrances are different from other perfume houses, I don’t think that Mildew or Earthworm will be out- selling Chanel no 5 this year. Kitten Fur, Crayon, Dregs, Fiery Curry, Funeral Home, Fuzzy Balls, Paint, Puppy’s Breath and Dust, to me were the stand-out scents, in particular as usually you try to cover up these smells, but I am guessing that’s the point been made. They do sell more traditional scents like Jasmine and Rose and the prices are affordable for an artisan product. Go to www. demeterfragrance.com for more details.

In 2019, one of the biggest trends has been Cannabidiol or CBD oil, and the perfume industry has been quick to jump on the cannabis waggon trending on the high-street. With several companies, producing perfumes smelling of Cannabis. Reeking of weed used to be seen as a bad thing. Now high-end beauty influencers are embracing fragrances designed to highlight the aroma of Cannabis. There’s one called Dirty Grass, an earthy scent with 500 milligrams of hemp-derived CBD oil in each bottle and a hefty price tag. Which is from Heretic Parfum’s, Douglas Little, the nose behind Goop’s all-natural fragrances. Luxury cult brand 19-69 make Chronic Eau de Parfum, which is inspired by the 1990s cannabis cultivation in Southern California. An ode to the Woodstock music festival and is best described as smelling of patchouli and fresh bud. Artisan company-Fresh produce, Cannabis Santal Eau de Parfum, which at £46 is one of the more affordable options. Apparently, this captures the raw sensuality of cannabis, and is known for its woodsy, musky properties and this is even sold by John Lewis!

Other scents which have become popular are paper and ink. So, if you’ve ever wanted to fool your friends that you constantly have your head stuck in a book, then this is the perfume for you. Paper Passion by Steidl, is a perfume that smells just like paper and ink. I think this would be a great room fragrance, although, I like this scent, I wouldn’t want to smell of paper and ink, that would remind be of school.

The scent of animals, has influenced perfume makers too. A perfect gift for those equine enthusiasts, Horse, is a scent created by the For Strange Women company and smells of horses, hay and oats. Artisan Parfumier created Dzing!, a perfume that smells like the circus. This fragrance has notes of caramel apples, sweaty artists, elephants and saddle leather.

Etat Libre d’Orange is, according to its website, an ambitious, audacious perfumery, passionate, exuberant and liberated. This is a different kind of perfumery, intelligent with a point of view, that uses irony to hone the names of its scents. Currently they present a collection of more than 30 fragrances. With names like: Fat Electrician, I am Trash and Putain des Palaces (Palace Whore in English) I feel these names are self-explanatory. Their best-selling fragrance is Magnifiques Secretions, a “Raw Sex” fragrance of blood, sweat, spit and semen. Creative and interesting, yes, but I will pass on this myself, I have heard of selling sex, but this is possibly one step to far? http://www.etatlibredorange.com

So, the perfume industry has us smelling of cannabis, mould, elephants and secretions, all very adult scents. However, you can also go back to childhood, if you want. The Library of Fragrance has bottled that fresh, just-out-of-the-can, Eau de PLAY-DOH aroma as part of a year-long celebration of the beloved modelling compound’s 50th Birthday. Prices start at £5 and this is currently sold out, So someone is wearing it! http://www.thelibraryoffragrance.eu for details

When you open a can of PLAY-DOH compound, you are instantly transported back to childhood.

Leigh Anne Cappello, vice president of marketing PLAY-DOH

I hope this has given you a different perspective on scent, I love florals and citrus and I don’t think I want to smell of mouldy socks any time soon, but you never know! Any Thoughts ?