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Beauty

Want To Smell Intellectual? These Scents Can Help

In an already saturated market like the one for perfumes, standing out from the crowd can be a big challenge. But a new crop of eau de parfums and eau de toilettes are carving a niche with their fashion-forward ethos and unconventional and non-commercial notes. Here, our edit of the ones to try and why we think they deserve a place on the vanity of every design snob and style fiend.
Louis Vuitton Heures d'Absence, $390
All you dreamy romantics, listen up. This newest addition to the luxurious Les Parfums line is a reimagination of the maison’s first ever fragrance from 1927. The latter was named after the country home the Vuitton family owned in the bucolic Seine-et-Marne region of central France in the 1920s, and was meant to evoke the spirit of the day: to break free, let go and essentially, seize the day. Fast-forward a century later, and the idea of being free gets translated into a fresh and radiant fragrance that is akin to a contemporary bouquet of fresh flowers. Main notes of jasmine sambac and may rose are infused through an exclusive extraction process that uses carbon dioxide while warm vanilla notes amplify the sophistication of the fragrance. CK Everyone, $129
This bottle design, with its cheeky Calvin Klein underwear band strapped around the packaging, can easily pass off as an art piece by Spanish artist Romulo Celdran who is best known for his hyperrealist sculptures. In reality, the minimalist bottle houses the latest update on the iconic CK One from the ’90s which was groundbreaking for being a unisex fragrance. Master perfumer and creator of the original CK One fragrance, Alberto Morillas, stuck to the gender-neutral approach and the clean and fresh profile of the original for this outing by using a combination of zesty organic orange oil and blue tea accord. Unlike the O.G., though, the new formula uses 79 per cent naturally derived ingredients, with the bottle and packaging made from recycled materials. That’s what we call moving with the times.   Chloe Nomade Absolu De Parfum, $201
Can a scent make you feel rugged but smell sophisticated and womanly at the same time? In the case of the newest EDP addition to Chloe’s Nomade line, the answer is a firm yes. The perfume, which references men’s fragrances, boasts a more intense woody chypre when compared to the composition of the original EDT. Oakmoss remains as one of the key ingredients while mirabelle plum and velvety davana add a fruity, sensual and juicy dimension. Sandalwood is also infused to add a creamy, woody richness to the olfactory experience. And for die-hard Chloe fashion fans, did we mention that the bottle comes in the shape of the brand’s Marcie satchel? Gabrielle Chanel Essence, $266
Housed in a graphic beveled square flacon, this fragrance riffs on the Gabrielle Chanel Eau de Parfum from 2017 which paid homage to Gabrielle Chanel’s extraordinary, determined and passionate spirit. Keeping to that exuberant message, this perfume explodes with complex and intense notes that are obtained by using the essence of four different kind of white flowers grown exclusively for the house. Grasse tuberose boasts a warm and opulent scent while jasmine gives the scent its intensity. Lastly, ylang-ylang and Tunisian orange blossom, gives the palette a crisp and fresh quality. Gucci Memoire D'une Odeur, $201
How do you bottle a genderless scent inspired by memories? If that sounds esoteric, consider how Gucci has created a whole new olfactory category called Mineral Aromatic to classify this perfume. Delicate, airy, sweet and luminous, the complex scent profile underscores the idea of fleeting and raw memories that forms the inspiration of this fragrance. Among the ingredients used are Roman chamomile, Indian coral jasmine petals, sandalwood, cedarwood and vanilla. The bottle design, inspired by the brand’s vintage fragrance bottles, is a fitting design for a scent that trades on nostalgia.   Burberry Her Blossom EDT, $196
The first fragrance helmed by Riccardo Tisci and the first to feature Burberry’s redesigned logo, this perfume embodies the energetic spirit of London in Spring. The scent is the work of master perfumer Francis Kurkdjian and features notes of mandarin, pink peppercorn, plum blossom and peony for a light yet fruity concoction, while notes of sandalwood and musk give depth. The minimalist bottle – reminiscent of a metal flask – takes cues from an archival fragrance design and has been updated with a white cap to represent blossom trees. Made from smooth, curved glass, it can be personalised with engraved initials on a gold charm.  Cartier Les Epures de Parfum, $365 each
This trio of unisex fragrances is an unexpected mix from the French maison which is more used to gender-specific scents. Created by its in-house nose Mathilde Laurent, the idea behind each fragrance is to bottle the resonance of living nature. The result are three intense eau de parfums. The  Pur Muguet features a calming floral bouquet made with notes of bergamot, lily-of-the-valley, rose and musk. The Pur Kinkan boasts a refreshing citrus scent while Pur Magnolia is a fresh fragrance filled with notes of magnolia.