A delivery of Penhaligon’s Ostara fragrance could not be more timely. I’m sitting at my desk with the cold, spring sun streaming through the windows and little buds are starting to appear in the garden. Attaching fragrances to seasons isn’t the best marketing plan in the world because ideally, you’d want your fragrance to sell all year round. But, Penhaligon’s Ostara is SO spring that it would impossible to do anything other.
It’s not just the look – the box is embellished with cut-out daffodils – the fragrance too begins with that bulby, earthy scent that your nose will definitely attach to spring. This is such a clever fragrance – it transforms from that first, almost peppery scent, to something fresher and vital, eventually settling to a warmer, more sunshine filled finish. I checked the Penhaligon’s site before I tried Ostara and read, “…An olfactory journey – from bulb to bud to bloom..” which honestly, I just thought was a bit of blurb. But, as things transpire, it really isn’t – Penhaligon’s Ostara truly does do that olfactory journey.
Of course, it’s not so simple. Penhaligon’s Ostara is a complex fragrance with a myriad of notes such as blackcurrant, clementine, juniper, hawthorn and violet leaf mingling with Narcisuss absolute. To be honest, I can’t pick out any one note from this – it’s complex blending that leads to a body of work. I’m tempted to say that it’s a little old fashioned, but the finish is anything but; it’s frustratingly hard to explain but I get a feel for lying on grass in the hot sun.
Penhaligon’s Ostara is definitely worth trying next time you’re passing a store – just for that excitement of the bulb to bloom transformation. It’s (eek) £110, but with Mother’s Day coming up, a bottle of this and a bunch of beautiful daffodils – definitely a lovely way to secure home cooked Sunday dinners for the next year! Penhaligon’s is HERE.
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