I think there’s a possibility I’m a dapper Englishman trapped in the worn out mom-bod of an ex beauty editor. Because while I squeal over every sultry floral that comes my way, most often what I reach for are fragrances like Floris 1976.
Floris is an old school English fragrance house with warrants from the Queen (the good type of warrant, where the royals just can’t live without your combs and all of a sudden you’re the house rumoured to be scenting the delightful Meghan Markle when she married that Harry guy and gets to play the role of princess permanently). Unlike Penhaligon’s, which has a tongue fairly firmly in cheek these days (their dandy Savoy Steam was one of my favourites of last year), Floris is a brand that plays it pretty straight. It can be a little tricky to identify with, and to be honest, the idea of a patchouli scent that harks back to London in the 70’s wasn’t really connecting for me when I first sniffed it at one of Agence de Parfum‘s epic press sessions. It ended up in my goodie bag though and so I trotted back home feeling mildly curious and nothing more.
So, after a good month of solid wear, nothing about 1976 feels retro or British to me (and you know how much of a sucker I am for a good story, reeeaaally doesn’t take much to get me in). It actually feels incredibly modern, subtle, a wearable unisex aromatic that I highly recommend getting your hands on if you like quality scents that fly under the radar.
SO what’s in it? I suppose that would be nice to share, right?
1976 opens with a very juicy lemon and bergamot combo, like a whole crushed bitter fruit. If you’re one of those crazy people that wakes themselves up with lemon squeezed into a glass of water you’ll recognise this effect immediately. It’s instant gratification. From there, 1976 becomes quite traditionally aromatic, we’re talking juniper, lavender, birch leaves. While these notes are all dry, and there’s even a bit of black pepper adding to that spiciness, there’s also an alpine, dewy quality that remains. The notes are held sort of at arm’s length, allowing you to enjoy them without being slapped about with a pine forest, or a sudden desire to buy an Aston Martin (if you are after some slapping around I recommend this). What 1976 cleverly does is employ a refined take on patchouli in the base to give shadow to all this bright energy. Along with an equally refined earthy vetiver, as the wear of 1976 goes on, there’s a dappling effect that takes place as the cool and earthy takes over from the light and aromatic.
Towards the very end, a sweetness emerges as well that prevents the scent from feeling overly masculine. Everything is well placed and it’s becoming one of those comfort scents for me that I wear if I’m feeling a bit off centre or unsure about what the day with bring (not an Aston Martin). Apparently it’s supposed to capture a sense of optimism from that time and it certainly has an uplifting effect on this trapped dandy.
Floris 1976 is $299 for 100ml, available Libertine Parfumerie