Thursday 21 July 2016


"The scent of summer" is a phrase that you're going to be reading a lot in the coming weeks, with each perfume company claiming that their fragrance is the true interpretation. The problem is that everyones idea of what makes up the scent of a summer holiday is usually pretty different. Some people envisage scorching sunshine, some imagine a sea-crashing surfers paradise, while some concentrate on that sugar rich candyfloss and ice cream concoction. So, with this in mind, I thought it would be fun to look at two of the most requested aromas and see where they fit into our childhood memories.

Before advancements in modern medicine one of the most recommended treatments for most "maladies" was an instruction to "take the sea air". It's funny to think that this cure-all approach actually had a lot of benefits, even if physicians at the time didn't realise it. The act of breathing in the sea air meant that you inhaled salt, which acted as a natural antiseptic for chest conditions, and plunging into the British oceans was bracing enough to kickstart anybodys circulation! In more recent times, the saltiness that we remember from seaside holidays as children stays with us all our lives, and so it was inevitable that is would eventually find its way into our perfumes.

We actually associate the smell of salt with its taste, and so the effect of "saltiness" in a perfume can be achieved by mimicking our interpretation of the taste. You also get an element of "saltiness" with the ingredient ambergris, although it's more of a support than a noticeable aroma. So, a great example of this style of fragrance has to be Jo Malone's Wood Sage & Sea Salt. You really do get a bracing seaside wave with this Christine Nagel creation, and it beautifully sums up the crisp English summer. Don't get too hung up with the sage because it appears fleetingly before being replaced with an aromatic grassy quality.

The major summer scent category started with the creation of a suntan oil called Huile de Chaldée in the 1920s. Created for Jean Patou it truly became the scent of summer. Women fell in love with it and started to wear it for its fragrance, and so Henri Alméras reorchestrated it and the perfume was released simply as Chaldée. It arguably started the trend for lush floral oriental fragrances and also set the blueprint for every sun product that came afterwards.

Choosing one perfume to mention in this category is so hard because the market is littered with them, and so that's why I've decided to choose my personal favourite, Monoï Eau des Vahinés by Yves Rocher. It is the embodiment of everything that is great about the scent of sun creams, and Nathalie Gracia-Cetto provides lashings of tiare flower, ylang-ylang, coconut and vanilla. With this range you also get a moisturising mist which is a great replacement for Guerlain's discontinued, and much missed, Eau Sous Le Vent. Whatever fragrance you choose I hope you all enjoy your summer ... but I'll definitely be more "sunshine" than sea salt.


  1. No doubt the fragrance is wonderful representation of sea salt. However I personally opted for Sel de Vetiver by TDC which is my of favourites, and Sicily Lime by Shay & Blue. Sicily Limes is more pocket friendly and ingredients are natural.
    Thanks for the blog and look forward to reading your next next article

    1. Hello Nadir, also great choices and thank you for the kind words. Best, Stephan