What do you see in the crystal?
What do you see in the stars?
We are in a state of global flux just now: the way ahead may seem obscure but at least we can still be sure of the sheer glamour, excitement and transformative power of perfume.
But in which direction will fragrance lead us all in the year to come? What are the current trends? Are there indeed any trends apparent amidst all the present confusion?
Some sociologists and psychologists of scent see an increasing longing for the olfactory comfort of the familiar; the simple; the homely. As life explodes into all sorts of disconcerting and unknown directions our sense of smell needs to foster calm and reassurance. Our noses are the last true working link with our ancient animal past: they ignite an explosion of emotions, memories and primeval instincts. The sense of smell keeps us safe; warns us of danger; helps finds our life partners. Our noses must be treated with care and respect and exquisite delicacy!
So in 2021 we shall be turning to fragrances that echo the security of infancy; of what we know; of what we remember. Perfumes that are familiar, clean, uncomplicated, soothing, undemanding: scents we can trust. Innocent fragrances with no hidden twists or disturbing surprises.
Set the scene for instance with beautiful fragrant candles such as Bluebell, Gooseberry Leaf and Minted which pour forth the scents of childhood; of April woods and cottage kitchen gardens. Robbie Honey’s Muguet Des Bois is another favourite: the intoxicating perfume of nostalgic lily of the valley.
Just the little ceremony of lighting a candle is so nuanced: that flame is illuminating the way to a brighter future. It’s an act of faith, a romantic gesture, the setting of a scene and the creation of a personalised ambience.
Favourite perfumes to wear will include the mint and honeysuckle of Le Pavillon d'Or, or a walk in a flowering leafy forest with the fresh and gentle Bois d'Enfant. And there’s a brand new masterpiece to try: Kingdom Botanica - a perfume that combines the exoticism of faraway places with the austere beauty and civilised style of an historic British capital city.
The flowers, fields and moors of Les Eaux Primordiales are rich in memories: the green meadows of Champ d'Influence and the sunny autumn berries and herbs of Moment Perpetuel. Couleur Primaire is wonderfully redolent of fresh air-dried laundry; and the newly released Exit The King has a deliciously soapy accord: Mummy and Nanny taking reassuring control in the bathroom!
Roses from an ancient English castle bloom in By Any Other Name, a scent as delicate and airy as a midsummer garden at dawn. Try also Fleur Diamantine, Rose Saltifolia, Rose Prana & Rose Supercritique: all subtle modern interpretations of our national flower and the international symbol of love and loyalty. They’re also examples of those now-trending perfumes that explore a specific ingredient in detail: put under a microscope or spotlight if you will, to reveal the oil’s every mood.
Rose oil is soothing, balancing and elevating. The salt marshes of Rose Saltifolia remind us too of the carefree joy of the seaside encapsulated in Sel Marin and Note de Yuzu. Blow your cares away in the beach breezes!
We also observe a growing new trend towards gourmand fragrances; a revival of the reassuring nurturing pleasures of taste and satiety. Chef's Table is for healthy salad eaters; Castaña roasts sweet chestnuts; Bello Rabelo offers the traditional gustatory grandeur of port wine and rich fruits. More traditional gourmands - the sort that suggest whipped cream, cocoa, powdered sugar and divinely decadent goo include; Prends-Moi, Milky Musk, Love and Crime and Cacao Porcelana.
Virtual party scents de luxe, to compensate for those parties of limited attendance which are currently in such very short supply. Even though you may be experiencing the most stringent social distancing, you can - and should - smell delectable in your own home!
These innovative new scents - like Mona di Orio’s Vanille and Vanilla Flash by Tauerville - will be a revelation to many and even convert those who have never been very keen on the bean of the vanilla orchid. Rather than syrupy & sugary they are dark, leathery, alcoholic with accords of fruits and tobacco.
We predict that 2021 will also see a great demand for long-established old favourites; once again, satisfying a longing for faithful friends, the tried and trusted, the safe and secure. Stunners like Portrait of a Lady and Carnal Flower - with their sumptuous bath and body accessories to enable you layer your scent. Treasured old acquaintances such as Creed, Caron, Isabey & Grossmith - all of whom have stood the test of time both at Les Senteurs and in the wider world.
2021: a year to consolidate, a year to remember, a year to feed Body and Soul!