Library of Fragrance Gingerbread: Memories of the Long Lost Perfume Bar


Library of Fragrance has yet to disappoint me.  The more I try the more I like.  For me, the main attraction is that LOF allows you to be a grown up.  It’s not offering you a ready made mass market concoction with lots of notes and asking you to like it, it’s giving you the tools to choose your own.

Having said that, they are all good quality alone, and any complexity and layers you add are entirely up to you.  Library of Fragrance reminds me of the much mourned Perfume Bar that used to be in every Body Shop branch in the 80s and 90s.  On a tiered stand would be huge bell jars of scent with glass dipping sticks.  You could then go up to the counter and request a bottle of the one you liked best, or maybe buy a few to go home with.


For a long time there has been nothing to match it, but I feel that Library of Fragrance goes a long way towards filling that gap. In fact I think what prompted me to think of the Perfume Bar was the delight I felt on trying Library of Fragrance Gingerbread.  It reminded me a lot of the Body Shop vanilla oil, back when vanilla was a good almond-y, rich scent that hadn’t been made into synthetic cheapness and added to all and sundry everywhere you look.

Library of Fragrance Gingerbread is a gourmand, and whilst I usually sidestep them, this is so good that I want a bottle to be a permanent fixture on my dressing table.  It avoids smelling like cake, and instead, capitalises on the ginger and spices and the kind of black vanilla seeds that you only get in the richest of crème brûlée rather than a Victoria Sandwich.

Needless to say, it’s beyond perfect for this time of year and truly excellent alongside Library of Fragrance Fireplace.  It would also be great alongside LOF Patchouli and LOF Musk.  And when I say great I mean it made me want to eat my own arm, it was so good.  Mix your own and invent a name.  I’m calling mine “Samantha-chouli-muskenspice” Gather your bottles together and get involved.


Stockists:  Library of Fragrance is available at Boots in the UK, online or in store.  Prices are £15 for one or £25 for two (one for you, one for Christmas presents). In the USA and Canada, this brand is known as Demeter and is available on

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