Over the past year, Europe has finally turned into a country of niche perfumes: despite the departure of many brands, it seems that you can still buy any olfactory exotic here. To be fair, it is worth noting that some new luxury items are also reaching us, although they appear on store shelves without advertising or announcements. As for independent brands, they are trying to conquer our market very willingly and quite openly, and their creators come to Moscow presentations in person. So, we ask you to love and favor – 13 newcomers of 2023.
1. Mihan Aromatics
The young Australian brand Mihan Aromatics appeared in 2017 and has seven fragrances. Its founders, married couple Julia Brown and Joshua Meehan, invite everyone who cares to take an olfactory journey through Australia: in the compositions of Mihan Aromatics you can find a dedication to blue cypress trees, surf wax and “the first drops of rain on the red earth.” The perfumes contain 30% aromatic substances, and the alcohol for them is distilled from “organic” sugar cane grown on the plantations of North Queensland, where Julia is from.
What to pay attention to: composition Guilty Story – a sweetish aroma of sandalwood with minimal inclusions of tobacco leaf. A very soft and relaxed perfume that creates the image of a “surfer girl”. Munlark Ash (“Ashes of Munlark”, as the blue cypress is called by the indigenous people of those places) is a watercolor sketch of “cypress trees in the fog.” The atmosphere is supported by notes of cedar wood, crushed fir needles and tree sap. It sits close to the skin, monumental, as befits one of the oldest trees on the planet.
The signature perfume brand from Spain was created by art connoisseur Francisco Gratacos (formerly a psychologist) in collaboration with perfumer Rodrigo Flores-Roux (also vice president of Givaudan) in 2020. The founders of Wilgermain cite New York and Paris as sources of inspiration, more precisely, American modernism and French chic. Not too original? Perhaps, but who would refuse to plunge into the atmosphere of these megacities now? And for lightning-fast teleportation to any point in the world, perfumes, as you know, are a proven and irreplaceable means.
What to pay attention to: The brand has six fragrances, and each, according to the authors’ idea, should say a new word in its genre or at least significantly refresh it. The woody-spicy composition Inconfessable copes with this task brilliantly. There is such a Caribbean spice – pimento, or allspice. In English it is often denoted by the curious word “allspice” – “all spices”. There is an explanation for this name: when pimento was first brought to England, people could not understand what the spice smelled like. It was possible to simultaneously detect the aromas of cloves, pepper, cinnamon and nutmeg. In Inconfessable, the perfumer plays with the concept of “all spices,” so there are a myriad of them here. All together they form the aroma of a completely new, unknown spice, which is skillfully diluted with woody notes.
3. Botanicae Expressions
The creator of the Botanicae brand, Salvador Montesinos, is from the south of Spain. In 2012, he moved to Dubai, where he worked with the region’s historic perfume brands. He studied blends that are passed down from generation to generation, and also coordinated the development and supply of new fragrances for large perfume houses. Then there were Iran, Saudi Arabia, Oman, Lebanon, India, Pakistan. Returning to his homeland, Montesinos decided to found a “brand of honest impressions” from the countries and places he managed to visit.
“I didn’t just create associative scents,” he says, “but I used ingredients for each one whose origin I know 100%. Let me explain: in the formula you will not find “tuberose from Grasse” – there will be tuberose from Jean-Luc, whom I have known for a hundred years.” By purchasing raw materials from private suppliers, and not from well-promoted companies, the brand receives extracts at reasonable prices. Therefore, the cost of a bottle of Botanicae is not too scary, as often happens with niche perfumes.
What to pay attention to: Highlands composition is an apothecary garden with a set of dry herbs that treats dry cough and melancholy. En Route has lots of fresh green grass and dandelion tea. Patio is creamy white flowers (gardenia, tuberose, jasmine, orange blossom) with sandalwood cream and the freshness of a summer morning.
4. Psychotic London
The founder of the brand is the Anglo-Georgian entrepreneur and passionate traveler Shota Lomtadze. During quarantine in 2020, he decided to start creating his own brand, inviting two stars to work on it: perfumer Celine Ellena and bottle designer Thierry de Bashmakoff. Having lived in London for a long time, Shota was so imbued with the eclectic and slightly crazy atmosphere of the British capital that he wanted to transfer it to his olfactory world. Hence, for example, the Forbidden Rose fragrance is a dedication to the eternal English roses. Here they are prickly, in the pitch darkness of the patchouli-pepper night and seem to refer to bouquets on Victorian wallpaper. There is also a national sense of humor: the shape of Psychotic London bottles is reminiscent of 19th-century syringes and embodies the idea of a dose of pleasure measured drop by drop.
What to pay attention to: The undisputed leader is Frozen Liquid – a refreshing mint with juicy herbs, water, salt and minerality. Addictive Drops – oud and smoke from alder chips from the smokehouse.
The Aqualis brand was created in the UK in 2017 by a native of South Africa, Stein Grobler. He dedicated his aromatic creativity to his native continent. This is expressed both in the names of perfumes (Kalahari is a large desert in the southwest of the continent, Namaqualand is a national park in Namibia), and in the compositions themselves, which often use endemic plants of those places: teas, bucha bushes, citrus fruits, etc. . All fragrances are presented in parfume concentration and contain over 25% fragrant substances.
What to pay attention to: Kruger – oriental rose; Coda is the favorite profile of the Middle East: balsamic, viscous, enveloping sweetness, the child of dried fruits and tropical flowers.
6. Material Atelier
The very young French brand Atelier Materi focuses on craft work and environmental friendliness. Hand-made bottles made of cobalt blue glass with concrete lids, covered with patina, provide a special aesthetic pleasure. There are ten fragrances in the line, each based on one natural component: well-known or exotic, but invariably…