Friday, July 26, 2013

Super Summer Scents 2013

Banana Beach Treat by Ayala Moriel
Banana Beach Treat, a photo by Ayala Moriel on Flickr.
Wherever I go, this summer is HOT. No matter how you slice it, cooling off is a constant desire that's not easy to fulfill. Some scents help, though, and especially these ones, which I have also taken on my sudden travels to the Mediterranean region.

Vanille Banane
Nostalgia at its best, by Comptoir Sud Pacifique: This fragrance reminds me of purchasing a chocolate-banana ice cream bar at the beach, right by the water from one of those vendors with ice boxes that walk the shores trying to entice parents to shell out prime cash for the privilege of eating it right there and then. The salty wind and the direct sunlight would make it melt rapidly, of course, and trickle down the toddlers hands and arms and eventually drop into the sand where they will languidly rest and become a thing of the past.

So Fresh, So Clean
The perfume oil version of Open Source Soap bar of the same name. This beautifully refreshing yet quirky scent combines fresh green notes such as galbanum, lemon and juniper with unexpected notes of mimosa, jasmine and vetiver, creating a fresh yet intriguing fragrance that is a modern twist on an Eau de Cologne.

Florida Water
Minty geranium, citrus and spice make this cologne unique, and oh so American. Buy it when you get your tortillas in your town's Latin grocery store, or make your own from the recipes I've quoted from Poucher earlier this month.

Patchouli Magique by Novaya Zarya
Surprisingly, patcouli based perfumes fair very well in unbearably hot climates. There is something strangely rejuvenating about this earthy note, not quite as cooling as vetiver, but still. This summer, Patchouli Magique is the star of my travel wardrobe.

Five by Bruno Fazzolari
Five brings forth the briskness of mint mingled with orange, cedar and oakmoss. Copious amounts of jasmine-y hedione brings to mind the iconic Eau Sauvage. More on the masculine side, which makes one wish men would wear cologne more often when it's so sticky outside.

Osmanthe Yunnan 
Hardly ever do I reach for this pale, transparent scent. "Invisible" is the word that comes to mind first when I try to describe it, which is rather disappointing from an osmanthus-lover point of view! However, in the heat of the humid Tel Aviv summer, it's iced-tea coolness provides a veil of sanity amidst the smog, sweat and other impolite scents one inevitably encounters on the streets.

Un Jardin Apres la Mousson
Cantaloupes are particularly fragrant this year in Israel, and we've even discovered the equivalent cheese pairing to watermelon and feta: Pecorino and cantaloupe. Try it and enjoy a mini trip to heaven. Un Jardin Apres la Mousson has become a summer staple for me over the years, since it was launched in 2008. I've had a long break from it though, and am  now back with renewed enthusiasm for its sticky melon paired with cool spicy notes of ginger and coriander and a tinge of wet vetiver. It's quite delightful and has a cooling effect in the heat and humidity, which is most welcome.

Summer Travel Wardrobe

Le Parfum de Thérèse
There is a prime example of how an obvious fruity notes (melon and under-ripe plum) can be played elegantly and without impinging on the perfume's elegance and abstract beauty. It's permanently sitting in my emergency kit in case I need to go away to a desert island unexpectedly...

Eau d'Orange Vert
This one is a scent that always makes me feel clean, instilling a sense of relaxed well-being and calm amidst the dust, grime and sweat that strikes cities of hot climate. Having this on hand ensures an instant crisply ironed white shirt feel anywhere, anytime. 

Tropical, exotic floriental that's together is a few of my favourite things: jasmine green tea, osmanthus flowers, spearmint and a smooth woody-ambery base.

No. 19 
Surprisingly, the Eau de Toilette formulation lends itself very well to hot weather without losing its poise. If you need to attend a formal event in the dog days of summer, consider this timeless composition of austere quality: iris, vetiver, leather, jasmine, rose, lemon and galbanum.

Aveda #4: Key Element Air
With notes of rose, jasmine and ylang ylang this is bound to be the most luxurious of all the Aveda catalog of non-descript numeral titles. It's floral yet light (at least in the alcohol based formulation) and is a simple celebration of jasmine and rose.

Savage Water Soap Bar 
Another bathing gem by Open Source Soap, this is a refreshing melange of verbena, basil, patchouli and jasmine. It's marvelously substantial yet refreshing and like everything that comes from the hands of Shuyler Corry - the talented soapmaker of Open Source Soap - it's very well made from quality materials and does more than it's being asked to do: it doubles as a soap, shaving cream and shampoo!

Balancing sweet, tart and aromatic - Etrog is my own little contribution to the world of "eaux".

How is your summer coming along? And how are you coping with the heat scent-wise?

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