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"scent memories"

Lauren Carbran- Editor, SCENTS blog

My best scent memory is when I first met my boyfriend (now my fiancé), on holiday. He was wearing Paco Rabanne 1 Million and I instantly fell in love with it. So now the scent reminds me of all our amazing moments together when our relationship started – we climbed up a mountain, hiked through stunning waterfalls and had our first lunch date overlooking a historic town. Now he wears it every day because he knows how much I love it (he loves it too, of course) and he even made sure he was wearing it when he proposed to me on top of a snow-capped mountain. I’ll be making sure that he wears it on our wedding day!

Lauren and Phil

Marie Krnakova

“One of my more vivid scent memories is of an afternoon walk from my school. It was my seventh birthday and I could not wait to get home and start the birthday celebrations; to open all my presents and to have a slice of cake. As I walked home through a nearby church garden, I suddenly ran into this beautiful cloud of a floral scent, so sweet and delightful. I instantly thought it was the most beautiful perfume I had ever smelt. Ignoring the birthday excitement, I started searching for the source of the smell. At some point, I looked down at my feet and noticed these tiny purple flowers in the grass. I remember sitting there on the cold grass amongst the violet flowers for a few moments, admiring their beauty, and thinking to myself how such tiny flowers can produce a fragrance so intense and beautiful.”

Andrea McLean

It’s incredible how most of our scent memories stem from our mothers, and the fragrances they wore while we were children. A faint whiff of one particular perfume can transport me instantly back in time to the age of around 8, when my mother would have been in her early 30s. She and my father used to entertain at our house a lot; it was the 70s and dinner parties were something that were occasions to dress up for. My mum made her own dresses – they were flowing halter-neck creations in vivid colours – and she looked beautiful. Mum would kiss us goodnight as she tucked us in, and the smell of Opium would linger in the air and on my pillow long after she had gone. The memory of it, like her scent, has lingered…

Nancy Meiland

My earliest scent memories are the most powerful and visceral.  My mother’s skin in the sunshine, burying my nose in large heady blooms of rose in my Grandmother’s garden while running about barefoot.  My grandfather’s wax jacket coming in from the rain and damp, be-dewed forest floors. Also, the steamy, leather, lemony hay scent when a saddle is lifted off a horse and the sea – always the sea; briny, salt, seaweed, rich, earthy and full of mystery.

Robert Starling

I have a number of favourite scent memories. The smell of a fresh pot of Play-doh opening. Instant comfort! I had many happy moments making things out of Play-Doh – and that’s what led me on to making my own models. Have you ever seen those packets of model railway grass? And the bags with lichen and bark in? Those instantly take me back to long hours spent making things in our shed. One whiff and I’m there! It may be a cliché, but I can’t pass a rose bush without checking whether it has a scent. Early evening walks with the dog have us both stopping regularly! And finally – steam trains. I wouldn’t recommend inhaling too much, but I do love the smell of an old-school locomotive.

Nafia Guljar

My scent memories are the smell after the Monsoon rain in Bangladesh & the smell of night blooming Jasmine in my Gran’s garden.

Stephan Matthews

Scent memories can come in all shapes and sizes and aren’t always associated with perfume. One of the most evocative smells for me is Pledge Furniture Polish. My mother was, and still is, a fanatical polisher and woe betide you if house keys or a wallet were left on a newly cleaned sideboard. Growing up in Wales the housewives were immensely proud of their homes and the routine of daily cleaning and tidying was entrenched in me from a very young age. I lovingly blame my mother, with a wink, for my inability to work unless my desk is clear of all clutter and any dust is swept away. Allegiance to many products and perfumes have shifted over the years but, to me, Pledge Furniture Polish is irreplaceable.

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Alexis Vaganay – General Manager, Coty Luxury UK & Ireland

I’m more drawn to woody spicy scent as it really makes me feel confident and empowered, probably because my dad was wearing such perfumes himself.  Even before joining Coty, I am already a huge fan of BOSS Bottled.  I remember buying my first BOSS Bottled after a business trip in the late Noughties and was immediately hooked.  BOSS Bottled reminded me on my first day at Coty as it was my go to scent to start a new chapter in my career life. In this past year at Coty, I have made many more Scent Memories: my last emotion was with Parco Palladiano V from Bottega Veneta.

Alexis Vaganay 2 AV HD 2014

Emily Chalmers – Global Associate Director at TALK PR

I’m lucky to be part of a very close, loving and supportive family – and many of my most treasured scent memories centre on this. My Dutch grandmother in particular has lived around the world and continues to be an inspiration to me today. She speaks eight different languages and raised four children across four continents – my father being one of them. She has the most incredible stories of her life in far-flung places, always infused with much excitement and a touch of old world glamour that only eras past can evoke. Her signature scent, “Rive Gauche” by YSL is extremely distinctive and she’s worn it for as long as I can remember. It’s the perfect balance of gentle florals and warm woody notes infused with a subtle sharpness that always has a comforting, calming yet motivational effect on me.

EMily

Leighton Denny MBE founder of Leighton Denny Light & Dark Fragrance Collection

When we’re asked about our scent memories we always go for the first smell that we remember or our first fragrance. I’ve said before that my answers would always be mandarin and Paco Rabannne XS, which was the first perfume that I ever bought, but another one of the scent memories that has been with me all of my life is leather.

Growing up in the eighties we all loved our leather jackets and I remember the smell that you used to get when you went into one of those stores. It was a rich, luxurious scent that just seemed to surround you. Throw in a suede coat and it felt like you were standing in the middle of a classic fragrance. I always used to remember back to that time whenever I smelled my rescue dog Rhino’s leather collar and lead. He was an absolute bundle of energy but unfortunately he died last year. So now when I smell leather it reminds me of him, and it always makes me smile.

When I launched LIGHT & DARK ORIGINAL in 2014 I wanted a classic, sensual fragrance that felt like you were being embraced when you wore it. This classic oriental style used patchouli, myrrh and amber to create the rich aroma, but I didn’t include leather. Maybe I should think about that for my next launch, perfume number five?!

LD HEAD SHOT 2016.[1]

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