Thursday 25 March 2021

BEYOND THE STARS with Marina Barcenilla

Marina Barcenilla Out Of This World Fragrances Doctor Who Tardis
“It’s the end, but the moment has been prepared for.”
These immortal words were uttered by Tom Baker in 1981 as he shuffled off his Doctor Who persona, but they also perfectly sum up the events of 29th April 2019. That was the day Marina Barcenilla Parfums closed its doors. Whilst the fragrances that bore her name were gone, the space age AromAtom project that she’d founded took centre stage. Her educational journey to the stars produced the Award-nominated perfume Out Of This World and, after almost two years, Marina is back with a new trio of fragrances and has her eyes firmly set on some serious space travel.

Marina Barcenilla was a multi FiFi Award Winner when she decided to step back from the fragrance industry. Her passion had literally become the stars and so she began studying to be a Planetary Scientist and Astrobiologist. The commitment that she demonstrated in her fragrances was transferred to her research, which might help to explain why her scientific reputation is now worldwide. However, it had always been in the back of her mind to create the accompanying fragrances for the AromAtom project and, thankfully for us, she has done just that. So prepare for lift-off, we’re going beyond the stars.

AromAtom was Marina’s way of giving back the support that she'd received during her fragrance journey. She created the scents of planets, produced visual aroma interpretations, and started to educate children in a way that inspired them. These scents weren’t suitable to be released as fragrances so she took the essence of the project and launched Out Of This World instead in October 2018. However, there were still fragrances on the horizon but, rather than replicate alien atmospheres, this time they would be Marina’s perfumed interpretations. So, it’s time to discover We Are The Martians, Moon Walk, and Ground Control.

Marina Barcenilla We Are The Martians Fragrance Doctor Who Tardis
We Are The Martians opens with an incredible pairing of black pepper and cardamom but, almost immediately, the scent of a neroli-imbued cold metal starts to come through. However, we’re then treated to an inspired interpretation of the planet’s dustiness through the use of saffron and a spicy guiacwood, which also adds an otherworldly smokiness. It also feels like there’s a distant hint of rose in here, but it’s almost like looking at a polaroid and imagining the scent. With a final wash of richly resinous frankincense in the base alongside an amber warmed cedarwood, Marina Barcenilla is back with a vengeance.

Imagine silver dust as far as the eye can see and that is what Moon Walk conjures up. Straight out of the bottle you get an incredible pairing of powdery, yet buttery iris and a cherry pie heliotropin that is immediately countered by a mineral aspect, almost reminiscent of stones drying in the sunlight. There’s an ambrette-like muskiness, with its whisper of sweetened floral nuances, but the iris is truly the star of this powdery, yet intriguing scent. With the merest hint of carnation, Moon Walk is wonderfully reminiscent of Jacques Guerlain’s style, and could even be considered a modern-day Après l'Ondée.

Ground Control is the scent that brings us home, and is described as “a fragrant ode to Earth.” To call it aromatic would be an understatement because you’re assaulted by a wonderful burst of earthy moss and vetiver all intermingled with the electrically charged scent of a rain storm. Crashing through a forest canopy is conjured up thanks to pine resins and smooth, slightly animalic oud but, alongside these, there’s also a perfectly balanced wooded incense and even a touch of davana. With the final tease of smoky cedarwood paired with sweetened sandalwood, it definitely shows that Marina has come home.

Each of the fragrances is available from the Marina Barcenilla Parfums website at priced at £69 for 50ml, £4.99 for 2ml, or £65 for all four fragrances as 8.5ml vials. You can read my original review of Out Of This World by clicking on the image below. [Samples provided by Marina Barcenilla]

Marina Barcenilla Out Of This World Fragrance Doctor Who Tardis


  1. She has a really interesting story!

    1. Hello Cynthia, Marina's story is indeed interesting, and her fragrances are well worth trying. I'm a little in love with MOON WALK at the moment. Best wishes, Stephan