Monday 3 October 2016


When the film Withnail and I was released in 1987 it launched the career of actor Richard E Grant. Born in Mbabane he moved to London in 1982 after studying drama at the University of Cape Town. Whilst managing to maintain an impressive acting career, Richard surprised everyone in 2014 when he ventured into the world of fragrance with his perfume Jack. A self confessed fan of everything scented, what would we discover as he submitted to "Stephan's Six"?

What is the first smell that you can remember?
Johnson’s Baby Powder. An absolutely delicious, clean and comforting smell that is indelible. When I was a teenager we used to sprinkle the powder on the floor for school discos, as it looked great under fluorescent light!

What was the first perfume you remember your mum or dad wearing?
My late father wore Old Spice which, in combination with Brylcreem, always evokes very strong memories of him. He was a very fastidious dresser and liked his hair to be similarly under control. Every now and again I will smell this scent amongst men of an older generation, so it’s very nostalgic.

What was the perfume of your twenties?
I wore Dior Eau Sauvage. I loved its bright citrus notes, ribbed bottle and the prospect of ‘scoring’ when wearing it! [I think we all had a 'pulling' fragrance]

What was your biggest perfume mistake?
Buying a bottle of Penhaligon’s Elizabethan Rose perfume for a woman who interpreted my gift as "something you’d give to your grandmother". It required a re-wrap and removal pronto presto!

You can only choose one perfume?
It would have to be JACK. Having been led by my nose all my life, JACK is most definitely my "signature in scent" because it combines my favourite ingredients - lime, marijuana, mandarin, nutmeg and tobacco. It won the best independent fragrance award at the perfume ‘Oscars’ in 2015, and that really launched my JACK brand.

What perfume should I try?
JACK-PICCADILLY ’69. It's a unisexy homage to London in 1969 and includes bergamot, leather, and even the aroma of petrol. Ed Burstell, the head of Liberty in London where it has recently launched, declared it "utterly addictive". [I love the benzene smell that you get from petrol so this one is definitely on the Christmas list!]

For more details of Richard's fragrance range, JACK, you can visit the website at or stop by the counters at Selfridges and Liberty.

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