How Not To Be A Fragrance Sheep: Top 7 Underrated Perfumes
BY JENNY JUNG
Aren’t you tired of smelling the same thing over and over again? Try these choices instead.
20 FEB - 2023
2023 is the perfect time for a fragrance renaissance.
Fragrance is great fun until you realise that everyone is beginning to smell the same. Especially when you share the same scent as the people around you. I mean, hello? Have people no decency? Fragrance etiquette 101 means that you don’t wear the same fragrance as your close friends and family.
If you want to avoid this sticky situation and find a fragrance that you know people won’t already own, read below to find your match.
Boysmells Suede Pony
Usually known for their candles, Suede Pony is part of a new fragrance collection from Boysmells! This fragrance is one of my favourite finds as a fragrance specialist. It possesses all the unique qualities of a niche perfume that we don’t often see from big fragrance houses.
At the top is a surprising cocktail of pineapple, plum, saffron and cardamom. Further down the line, we have the warm and smoky suede and hazelnut. This unlikely composition creates an animalaic and earthy vibe that is sweetened by the fruity notes. Finally at the base, labdanum and patchouli ties everything together.
Overall, this fragrance is a nutty and woody fragrance that is ever so slightly spicy. If you are looking for an extremely long lasting scent, the Boysmells fragrances are eau de colognes. With a higher perfume oil percentage, you’re bound to smell Suede Pony on your skin into the night!
Abel Odor Cyan Nori
If you want to dip your toes into the niche world of fragrance, Abel Odor is an amazing place to start.
Cyan Nori by Abel Odor is a summer must-have. It is salty, citrusy and musky- refreshing and incredibly complex. Although fragrances from the niche category tend to deter people due to its complexity. However, you won’t have this issue with Cyan Nori. This fragrance is super fresh and the musky notes are delightfully warm.
Similar to Neroli Portofino by Tom Ford, Cyan Nori plays with the boundaries of citrus by injecting a large dose of salty musk. Here, the star notes are tangerine and seaweed. Additionally, sweet peach and skin-like musk marries the two unlikely notes together in a harmonious blend.
Diptyque Eau Duelle
Eau Duelle is an elevated amber and vanilla dream.
Vanilla is a difficult note in the fragrance world because it can tend to pull too sweet, or even come off as childish. However, this fragrance is able to incorporate this finicky note and turn it into something sophisticated. We can thank the olibanum, saffron and ambergris for this! The combination of the resinous and aromatic notes grounds the sweetness of the vanilla.
Furthermore, pink pepper, bergamot and black tea also provides Eau Duelle with the necessary freshness that uplifts this fragrance throughout wear. This helps with vanilla notes dragging down a fragrance into overly sweet mode.
If you have been on the search for a mature and sophisticated vanilla that is sweet yet mysterious, give Eau Duelle a try.
Diptyque Eau Duelle, EDT, $277 NZD.
The Virtue Narcosis
Narcosis is quite literally narcotic, addictive and hypnotising. It is made of Sichuan pepper, rose, powdery musk, cloves and patchouli. It results in the most elegant, mature and sensual scent that is perfect for nighttime wear.
If you have been looking for a powdery musk fragrance that doesn’t remind you of Marie Antoinette, Narcosis is definitely one to check out. This fragrance is truly unisex and full of character. If the rose note makes you unsure about Narcosis, remember that it is only the top note and will flitter away after 30 minutes.
One word: wow. Malin+Goetz Cannabis is the modern apothecary fragrance - calming, refreshing and interesting. The combination of white florals, lemon, black pepper and patchouli creates a bright herbaceous aroma that stops people in their tracks to ask you what you are wearing.
I recommend the perfume oil over the EDP as they last much longer on the skin. The Malin+Goetz oils form a distinct halo of scent that permeates much further than other oils on the market. This means you won’t have to worry if you tend to prioritise the sillage of a fragrance.
Earlier, we declared that L'Eau d'Issey Eau & Magnolia by Issey Miyake was the ultimate clean girl fragrance. Well, Cannabis by Malin+Goetz would be a great “clean boy” fragrance as it utilises the same magnolia note.
Marc-Antoine Barrois Paris Ganymede
If you have never tried mineral fragrances, this is your sign. Using mineral notes in a fragrance is kind of like adding a lime to a drink. It adds freshness, enhances the flavours and makes things a little more interesting.
Ganymede by Marc-Antoine Barrois Paris is a masterpiece. This fragrance layers saffron, suede, violet, osmanthus, and of course, minerals. This combination creates a multifaceted fragrance that smells warm, spicy, ozonic, musky, leather, fruity and herbal. Although this sounds like a rather complicated composition, the nature of mineral fragrances tend to smell like a lot of different things all at once - in a good way.
This is most definitely a special occasion fragrance. On days where you want an escape from typical floral or woody scent profiles, try Ganymede. It is ultra classy and smells really rich and expensive.
Le Labo Lys 41
Santal 33, The Noir 29 and Another 13 are some of the hero fragrances from Le Labo. However, if you wish to explore the brand without smelling like every second person you walk by on the street, check out Lys 41.
Lys 41 is a shy perfume that exudes an elegant quality thanks to the white floral concoction of tuberose, lily and jasmine. Lightly sweetened with vanilla, it stands out within the powdery category. Despite its feminine direction, the woody notes at the base gives Lys 41 an animalaic and seductive twist.