Tag Archives: Penhaligons Bluebell

My Top Ten Scents for Spring

brambleberry

Looking through my blog I found it hard to believe that I’ve never done a Spring round up. Since I am a devoted fan of hesperides and green notes, this seemed nothing short of a shortfall. Spring is that time when you can leave the heavy hitters behind and start to wear the scents that reflect a cold earth coming back to life. Many of my favourite flowers are Spring flowers: daffodils, bluebells and hyacinths. I love them in real life and I love them in my garden.

 

1. 4160 Tuesdays Ealing Green

fragrantica

This brings to mind a madrigal I can sing (the only one actually) “Each with his merry lass/Upon the greene grass”. This is, as that quote might suggest, green and grassy and a little chalky and violetty in the base, like a mossy white cliff.  I adore it. You can buy it from 4160 Tuesdays. I reviewed it here.

 

 

2. Aftelier Palimpsest

Mandy Aftel, from www.aftelier.com

 

Dear Mandy Aftel sent me a lovely sample of Palimpsest and my first thought was “she has captured the daffodil!”. It is an exact capture, and being Welsh, I know my daffodils. My review is here. You can buy Mandy’s wonderful (and all natural) creations from her website.

3.Tauer Carillon Pour Un Ange

carillon pour un angeI could not leave out a lily of the valley scent in a Spring line up.  I am attempting to grow lily of the valley for the first time this year and I hope my late grandmother’s green fingered genes will live on. I have a full bottle of Carillon Pour Un Ange on my dressing table and believe me when I say a little goes a long way. Here’s my review. You can buy it from the Tauer website or you could try Les Senteurs.

4. Shay and Blue London English Cherry Blossom

cherry blossomWhat could be more springlike than blossom? Here you really get the cherries as well as the petals. I have a full bottle of this and the packaging alone is worth owning. It’s a joy to look at and to wear. You can read my review here. You can buy Shay and Blue from trusty Marks and Spencer.

 

5. Friedemodin Vertine

www.Friedemodin.com

A delightfully green and refreshing scent with hints of mint and basil. It is as gentle as a watercolour. This is one of four beautiful scents in this small but superb capsule range. You can read my review of it here. You can now buy Freidemodin in TK Maxx as well as instore at Harvey Nichols.

 

6. Library of Fragrance

Tomato-LOF-Hero.jpg_1024x1024There are two Library of Fragrance scents that sum up Spring for me: Wet Garden has a touch of earthiness and bags of fresh hyacinth. My review is here. It smells like total heaven on my friend Alison!

Library of Fragrance Tomato proved that if ever it was worth smelling something blind it was this. I was sent it as a surprise and I fell for it hard. Replete with green shoots, leaves and that rhubarby/lemon scent of a true greenhouse tomato, this is an uplifting scent that deserves it place in any Spring list. My recent review is here. You can buy Wet Garden and Tomato from Library of Fragrance or Boots.

7. Penhaligon’s Bluebell

bluebellHow can it be Spring unless there are bluebells? Bluebells are one of my favourite flowers. Penhaligon’s has captured it better than anything else I have tried. My review is here. You can buy Bluebell from Penhaligon’s, Amazon UK or allbeauty.com.

8. Carven L’Eau de Toilette

carven bottleI reviewed this beautiful green scent recently ( see link here) and it was light, airy and clean smelling. This is a delight to wear on a spring day and reasonably priced too. You can buy it from Amazon UK or from Fragrance Direct.

9. Miller Harris Coeur de Jardin

millerharris jardin denfanceMiller Harris, ever reliable, comes up with the goods yet again. Coeur de Jardin is a beautifully spring like fragrance that teams pear, tuberose, jasmine and moss together for the scent of a garden straight from your childhood. My review is here. I also recommend Cassis en Feuille (review here), which is blackcurrants and tomatoes, but a realistic greenhouse version. You can buy these from the Miller Harris website.

10. Jo Loves No 42 The Flower Shop

product_100_fragrance_flower-shopNo 42 The Flower Shop is named after Jo Malone’s first workplace. Jo Malone MBE of Jo Malone fame (does that make sense?) has created a second, more personal perfume house. Using fragrance notes she is passionate about,No 42 the Flower Shop has that lovely accord of a florists that is as much about stems and leaves as it about fresh petals and buds. My review is here. You can buy this from Jo Loves.

 

 

 

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Photos: Top photo of cherry blossom from www.brambleberry.com. Tomato photo from www.westmillorganics.co.uk. Miller Harris photo from Miller Harris. Jo Loves photo from Jo Loves. . Library of Fragrance photo from Library of Fragrance. Photo of Mandy Aftel from www.aftelier.com.  “Wet Plants” photo from Pinterest. All others are from Fragrantica

Penhaligon’s Bluebell

bluebell

I have long wanted to try Penhaligons Bluebell, despite knowing that it was a favourite of Mrs Thatcher, of whom I was not a fan.  Interestingly, it is also rumoured to have been a favourite of the late Princess Diana, and the very current Miss Kate Moss.

The reason I have longed to try this is two fold.  Firstly, when I was growing up there was a field and some woodland near our house which were  awash with bluebells every year.  I would pick huge bunches of them and the smell of them is a memory that has always stayed with me.  Olfactive memory is never to be underestimated and can pack more of a punch than a photo.

The second reason, tied in with the first reason, is that the very first bottle of perfume that  I ever bought myself with my own money was a little glass bottle of Bluebell perfume from Boots The Chemist.  It was a splash bottle, square, and made of frosted glass.  It has long since been discontinued but I remember buying it in my early teens and splashing it on liberally.

 

Bluebells in the Forest of Dean. Photo by me
Bluebells in the Forest of Dean. Photo by me

I had a Penhaligons Scent Library sample tin for Christmas, but Bluebell was missing.  Luckily dear friend of the blog  Patsi came to the rescue and I was delighted to receive a sample of both Bluebell and Violetta from her yesterday, for which, many thanks indeed Patsi.  I cannot pick a favourite from the two!

Penhaligons Bluebell lived up to my expectations.  It smells exactly like a fresh bluebell, only cranked up a little and made more intense.  The natural smell of a bluebell is more subtle, but we’re not going for realism here, we are going for reproduction. There is slightly metallic, medicinal tang to it, a little like Jasmine at its freshest.  Alongside the central bluebell note ( listed as Hyacinth, but all the same family)  are other floral notes that fill in the gaps as the sharp, high pitched Bluebell wavers, unable to keep the fresh note going.  Here I can discern Lily of The Valley and a faint rose, before the Bluebell note melds into the spicier, base notes with its cloves and cinnamon, used sparingly, like a faint outline.

 

kew.org
kew.org

There is a definite vegetable note in the base, reminding me that bluebells are related to asparagus, but it is eclipsed by wafts of  pleasing flora.   Would I buy this? Yes.  And I would also buy Penhaligons Violetta and wear them together, because, oh boy, that smells amazing!

Stockists

You can buy Penhaligons Bluebell from Penhaligons and Penhaligons stockists and franchises, which you can find here.  You can also find Penhaligons on allbeauty.com, Amazon UK and Amazon.com, as well as eBay.