Library of Fragrance (aka New York’s Demeter perfumery) has arrived in the UK and is unlike anything I’ve experienced before. It offers a literal library of 300 fragrances based on everyday scents around us - think Grass, Gin & Tonic, Play-Doh, Marshmallow - with something to appeal to everyone and their aunt. 101 of these are now available in the UK, with an edited 28 bestsellers at Boots.
Most are based on real life scents - Sticky Toffee Pudding, Leather and Cake Batter, while others are imagined scents - Snow, Sunshine and Thunderstorm. I find it all quite amusing and rather charming. A bit like a fragrant version of Jelly Belly Beans… in fact they do have 10 Jelly Belly scents in the US! The idea is to use the scents to rekindle memories, recreate happy moments and layer up to create your own personal fragrance - a la Jo Malone (but more affordable and perhaps aimed more at a younger market).
I have four to share with you today, which I chose based on a combination of appeal and intrigue. I’ll let you guess which was which!
Orange Blossom ‘full, lush and exquisite – a perfect adaption of the scent of the living flower, carried by a gentle breeze on a warm summer's evening.’
This was the one I expected to love and wear the most, but actually appealed least of the four. I expected a distinct orange scent, but it’s more subtle than that - very much a citrus floral - and rightly so. It’s a good daytime scent and perfectly pleasant, just not what I expected.
Fireplace ‘It smells exactly like your jumper after sitting for hours in front of a roaring wood-burning fire.’
This is my absolute favourite as it smells exactly as you’d imagine - like you’ve had an open fire lit in the house all day. Confession: I don’t wear this on my skin as I personally don’t want to smell of firewood (might smell good on a man’s skin), but I love to spritz it into the air in my living room and it works equally well as a room scent. I tested it out on my 9 year old daughter who immediately said ‘fire’, a smell she’s not at all familiar with as we don’t have an open fire.
So what do you imagine a Moonbeam would smell like? ‘opens with Vanilla and Chocolate, then combines with green leaves, Jasmine, Lily of the Valley, Amber and precious Woods’.
I must admit I think they’ve got this one spot on… it makes me smile when I spritz it and imagine little dancing moonbeams - it’s sweet, fresh, soft and pretty - a very wearable, feminine scent.
Gingerbread ‘a rich, spicy ginger scent, extremely warm and sexy.’
This was my wildcard… I love the smell of ginger and had hoped for more ginger than bread, but this is super sweet and to be fair, does smell like actual gingerbread, straight from the oven. It’s very gourmand with a hint of caramel and spice… fans of sweet scents will love this and it’s quite festive! My 6 year old son thought it smelt like chocolate and orange, pretty good for a blind test. There is also a Fresh Ginger scent, for those more inclined towards a pure ginger alternative.
The Library of Fragrance, £15 for 30ml at Boots (currently on offer: 2 for £25)
I think this is a fun and unique collection and would make a great gift - do any of the scents appeal to you? Baby Powder or Vanilla Ice Cream anyone?