Couple fragrances can be pretty predictable: Often, what you get is two scents with slight variations, in similar bottles (and typically, one of these will feature a light, pretty hue, while the other will be black or dark blue).
Leave it to luxury perfumer Henry Jacques to create pairs of scents that are unique, and yet designed to work well together. A maker of bespoke fragrances to royalty and high society, the French perfumery is known for its highly concentrated fragrances that are meant to be delicately dabbed on one’s pulse points — not liberally spritzed on (and around) the wearer.
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Most recently, Henry Jacques launched the third and final editions of its Les Toupies (French for spinning tops) collection, Fanfan and Galileo. With florals mingling with spicy and smoky notes, this pair is the most exuberant and playful of the Les Toupies series yet.
What unites both scents is a top note of lavender. However, that is where the similarity ends: Galileo is a more masculine scent with additional top notes of Italian mandarin and geranium, which give way to smokier accents of tobacco, myrrh and amber. Fanfan, on the other hand, is a softer fragrance, with saffron, Egyptian geranium and Damask rose adding layers of gentle complexity.
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But as any perfume lover would know, the scents themselves are just half the story: The bottles in which they come complete the experience. We can say without reservation that these are some of the most exceptional fragrance flacons we have seen: Designed by Henry Jacques’ artistic director Christophe Tollemer, Les Toupies multifaceted crystal bottles are made entirely by hand.
Each Les Toupies bottle bears a different design that subtly reflects the scent it holds: Inspired by their vibrant compositions, the bottles of Fanfan and Galileo feature the most rounded contours in the series, and are topped by concentric circles, like ripples on the surface of a pond. It’s imaginative and evocative — as the experience of using a scent should be.
This article first appeared in The Peak.