Trial Sized

By Jo Phillips

Over the last 25 years, the perfume industry has been blown wide open with the advent of what is now referred to as niche fragrances. These are scents created by small makers who tend to try more unusual layers and with higher often levels of expensive ingredients that are not driven by marketing brief but the perfumes own emotions and experiences. From love stories to people and places via perfumes inspired by building and music, the variety has never been better. So how do you navigate this almost minefield of choice? What about starting off small with travel, trial and discovery set sizes. One of the best ways to bring a small selection to your home to explore what you may well never knew you loved. Find out more in Trail Sized here.

One of the big issues with lockdown had been the fact we can’t go into general or specialist stores, so things like engaging with saying perfume is near on impossible. Those times of wondering around your favourite department store lost in the magnitude of perfume offerings spraying tiny droplets on cards to navigate and sniff your potential next fragrance addiction.

But one of the big pieces of progress made in the world of fragrance is brands creating discovery sets and perfume clubs. This has actually been a movement that has been growing but with the advent of lockdown, it really does make so much more sense.

Not only are these boxes of sets very cost-effective as you can smell a good selection of scents from a brand without having to buy a huge bottle you end up not loving, but they are also a wonderful gift option. Perfume is a splendid present but not if the receiver doesn’t like the scent you choose, but give a discovery set and let them meander through and find their favourites.

Perfume subscription clubs are a wonderful way not just to try fragrances but to learn about ingredients and one of the newest and most exciting is Yú Parfums Edition. Subscribe to a Yú membership to receive an edition of luxury gender-neutral scents every two months in a beautifully packaged gift box.

The brand works like a perfume library and each package is themed around an idea and an ingredient. Very much part of the ethos within their bi-monthly gender-neutral scent is the ability for each of us to learn better and explore different ingredients perfumes are composed of, as well as creating the ability to build one’s own perfume library. And of course, their creations are bold and dynamic because they are working with a community of creative Perfume Authors for each chapter.

The latest chapter, this is the second ‘book’ contains perfumes four, five, and six. It is an exploration of fabric from the concept of touch, feel, and how that would translate into a sense of smell.

So the tactile experience of cloth is explored via three paths. The hero here in perfume four is cashmere, think soft tactile creamy, and warm. Made up of Cashmere Wood with soft skin like Musk, sweet, creamy, smooth, warm Sandalwood and soft Blond Woods alongside delicious fresh green of Violet Leaf and soft powdery Orris. A perfume to dive into, that surrounds and wraps around just as the best ever cashmere jumper may. warm with a touch of cool. A very modern interpretation.

Perfume five explores the wonderful elegant fabric Organza, a crisp silk that holds its form off the body and is often seen in couture outfits. A natural silk fabric that is sheer and delicate yet holds it own form. So this scent is made up of delicate Mimosa with Cassis alongside the very regal ingredient of Jasmine Sambac with joyous Orange Blossommusks add to bring a sense of skinlike intimacy to the fragrance. It intrigues and is bold yet delicate at the same time. There is a real sense of sheer lightness to this perfume yet its bold in its construction perfectly imitating this sexy elegant fabric

Finally in this chapter comes number six and the exploration of suede. as tactile as it gets a fabric you can’t help want to caress whilst wearing.
Opening with leathery suede-like Suederal and leathery with woody smoky undertones of Styrax. Papyrus which is aromatic, a little dry, earthy and spicy with the most majestic Oudh, a bittersweet and woody earthy and, supremely sexy ingredient that brings an animalistic twist, finished off with Magnolia flower with its candy, spicy verbena facet along with Ambrette seed.

Another brand with a good discovery set is the natural perfume company Abel. Their brand values talk of “Inspiring positive change
by creating the world’s best 100% natural perfume, without compromising on ethics or aesthetics”.

Their discovery set includes seven of their key fragrances, White Vetiver, Golden Neroli, Red Santal, Cobalt Amber, Green Cedar, Pink Iris, and Grey Lamdunam. This collection gives a great overview of the sense of the brand. Ethically the company takes a very clear stand and so not only is the scent of fragrances beautiful but it’s a gift with a concious.

Finally, why not explore 27 87 perfumes. This is a line of progressive, inquisitive unisex perfumes, each reflective of a distinct state of mind. These fragrances are craftsmanship by local Barcelona artisans to create perfumes that are long-lasting and blended to evolve over time.

Romy Kowalewski founded 27 87 with the clear intention of creating perfumes that enhance an individual’s personal, immediate reality. A go-getter and passionate re-inventor, she partners with some of the world’s finest noses to create perfumes as progressive and inquisitive as the here and now.

The Discovery Kit, containing 2 ml vials of #hashtag, elixir de Bombe, wandervogel, hamaca, genetic bliss, and sónar.

All of these discovery sets allow a more intimate relationship with the world of luxury perfumery. Better still when we are able to go abroad again these are a travel-friendlier alternative to pack in your suitcase. Or in the simplest case just a wonderful way to grow a perfume wardrobe without breaking the bank.

If you enjoyed reading trail-sized then why not read Love in a Bottle Here

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