Monday 30 May 2016


He started by doodling on a post-it note and went on to become a published artist with his book @3MinuteDoodle. Mark Manley has managed to do something different in the world of art and he's sketched theatre to film, and everything in between. With a career based around speed his answers to "Stephan's Six" are short, sharp and perfectly drawn.

Thursday 26 May 2016


One of the problems with perfume, as with most other hobbies or pastimes, is that there will always be an element of snobbery from certain camps. This can be around a particular brand, certain perfumers, even the direction that companies choose to take their scents. I find the greatest cause of misinformation usually comes from this group as they wage a war against anything that classifies as "mainstream". The word that is bandied around constantly at the moment is "niche", but is it time that we finally put it to bed in favour of a different one? I know that I am sticking my head well and truly above the parapet but my heckles are raised and it's time to voice my opinion.

Monday 23 May 2016


You might not have heard of Marina Barcenilla, but you've probably heard of her award winning perfume, India, which won Best Independent Fragrance at last week’s Fragrance Foundation Awards. Born in Spain, her desire was to try and create a perfume range grounded solely in traditionally extracted ingredients. Would her perfume memories for "Stephan's Six" include any surprise synthetics?

Thursday 19 May 2016


Products that are sighted at a male market with point blank aim have a terrible history of actually missing the target altogether. They can end up languishing on the bottom shelf or, worse still, relegated to the "bargain" section. So it was with some apprehension that I approached GRUHME NO.14, a male Eau de Toilette. I imagined a gym-butch masculine scent with the subtlety of a hammer that existed just to deplete the worlds supply of patchouli and vetiver, but I was wrong. I was very wrong. Put preconceived ideas to one side and let me introduce you to a beautifully refined men's fragrance, which ladies are bound to steal.

Monday 16 May 2016


She describes herself as “a mum and actress”, in that order, but Carol Royle has had a hugely successful career in television, film and theatre. Chanel lovers may recognise her as the face of No.19, but it was her recent role as Emilie in the BBC drama Casualty that people now remember her for. Her character had Huntington’s Disease and was the mother of two of the regular doctors, Cal and Ethan. After this emotional storyline I met with her to ask her “Stephan’s Six”.

Thursday 12 May 2016


When a company launches its first fragrance a lot hangs in the balance. One of the biggest gambles is whether it will gain an audience in an ever expanding perfume market. Some excellent scents come and go without making an impact, some novelties are badly judged, and some of the breakthroughs surprise everyone. An existing customer following is an advantage, but not a guarantee, so it was still a gamble when Leighton Denny launched LIGHT & DARK in 2014. With a further two fragrances arriving at the end of 2015 it's now time to look at the complete set of three, and see whether Leighton's fragrances offer the same variety as his celebrated nail varnishes.

Wednesday 11 May 2016


On Thursday 12th May the results will be announced for the UK Fragrance Foundation Awards 2016. Four of the nominees were featured on "Stephan's Six" during 2015, and I am thrilled that 4160 Tuesdays and Papillon Artisan Perfumery are on the list alongside the usual big hitters. Leighton Denny is back for another year, along with the regular addition of Roja Dove, so let's look at these nominees and revisit the secrets that they revealed when they succumbed to "Stephan's Six".

Monday 9 May 2016


When Demeter Colognes launched in the UK under the name of The Library of Fragrance it was with Clare Rees at the helm. An unconventional perfume lover, which is why she was perfect for the brand, Clare has FINALLY succumbed to "Stephan's Six". I've subtitled this interview, "From Hairspray to Haute Couture", and with her eclectic selection you'll quickly understand why.

Thursday 5 May 2016

My Perfume Society Favourites

It's my birthday, sort of. One year ago I started, a twice-weekly observation on the perfume industry, and in that time we've had ninety four articles, two events, and an occasional "heated debate". One of the things that kickstarted my writing was the Perfume Society, and they have given me a wonderful birthday present ... five memberships to give away to my readers. Before we get to the competition I want to share with you my five favourite articles from the Perfume Society's magazine, the Scented Letter. It was great re-reading the current sixteen issues, and I hope that you enjoy the choices.

Monday 2 May 2016


Since leaving Middlesex University Sarah Moyle's acting career has taken her in many different directions. A successful list of theatre credits runs alongside her many television appearances, including Born And Bred, Emmerdale and WPC 56, but it was her regular role as Kimberley in Ricky Gervais' Extras 2 that brought her to most people's attention. Sarah is now permanently to be found in the fictional town of Letherbridge playing the eccentric Valerie in the BBC soap Doctors. In a break from filming I took the chance to find out her perfume memories for "Stephan's Six".