The 90s are now a distant memory, or not even a memory for some at this point, but this was the decade that left the biggest impact on me, for better or worse (and in retrospect, mostly worse). So naturally, when I was commissioned to created fragrance inspired by that decade, particularly those citrus aquatics in the style of L’Eau d’Issey, but with luxury, high-end materials, I was on board. Now, however, that private commission is now going to be available to the public today at 12pm Eastern, with notes of citrus, bergamot, verbena, aquatics, green tea, geranium, and sandalwood.
The citrus accord at the top plays in tandem with the aquatic accord. There are natural distilled essential oils (in order to be as skin-friendly as possible, including lime and sweet orange, as well as a yuzu essential oil. There is also a juicy grapefruit note, sweeter than the expressed essential oil, which comes from the peel and is more harsh and bitey, followed by orange blossom absolute. This is all grounded by vetikone and vetiveryl acetate, two vetiver-type materials that have citrusy lemongrass vibes going on.
As a bridge to the aquatic accord, there is a healthy dose of calone, a melon-type material that was a powerhouse in L’Eau d’Issey. It is enhanced by a touch of watery citrus headlined by dihydromyrcenol (just a touch, because a 90s aquatic would not be complete without it), as well as the citrus-tinged water lily of bourgenal. There is an era appropriate use of hedione, a jasmine-type note associated with fragrances like Acqua di Gio and Tommy, but with newer derivatives that I prefer, hedione HC and kharismal.
The green tea accord is also a 90s staple, and this is recreated with a trifecta of naturals that I sought out specifically to recreate this accord in the most luxurious way possible (seeing a theme?) from across the globe. It includes yerba mate absolute (a tea commonly imbibed in South America), hinoki (a Japanese cypress wood) and clary sage (this one’s provenance right here in America). Those notes are supported by a favorite of mine, sagecate, a citrusy sage note, as well as palmarosa from India.
The incense accord is subtle and low in the mix, but it does add a spiciness to the green tea. It is headlined by frankincense (boswellia serrata) from Oman, black pepper and nutmeg from India, and Russian coriander.
Supporting everything is a sandalwood essential oil, sustainably grown and harvested, that is supported by a few notes to enhance the creaminess of the sandalwood note. Beyond that, Romanolide, a clean laundry musk, supports the whole thing, along with a touch of the nutty ambrettolide, a safe recreation of ambrette seed.
Of course, there is much more in the composition, but I don’t want to bore you with all the microdosing and whatnot. It’s probably best to simply enjoy it. There will be a small amount of these available just in time for the holiday season. Hope you enjoy the latest chapter of the Side Project Series and have a great holiday season!