The narcissus flower is a surprising star in skincare and scent … Here are six of the best products to try …
Daffodils are coming to an end. Those uplifting flashes of yellow – which have brightened up our days more than ever this year – are looking decidedly withered and crispy out in the parks. They’re always such a sign of hope after dark winter days, and we miss them when they’re over. But, with immaculate timing, we’ve come across some beauty arrivals that champion this most beautiful of flowers. And these will last throughout the year …
1 Narcissus isn’t a common extract in skincare, but lovely UK brand Votary have captured it to excellent effect in their new Brightening Hyaluronic Serum with Narcissus and AHA. Designed to illuminate your skin, it’s a lovely (vegan) formula that leads with bitter orange flower and lemon water, along with fruit extracts, including blueberry, and active ingredients such as salicylic and glycolic acids to gently exfoliate and lift dead skin cells so you’re left with fresher, more even skin. Every time I use it I think how lovely it is – it smells divine and feels beautifully light on the skin. If you haven’t tried Votary’s luxurious and delicately fragrant facial or cleansing oils, I highly recommend them – it’s a brand I would buy if I didn’t get to try out samples. Narcissus flower extract also features in their bestselling Intense Overnight Mask (€110) – a peachy-coloured, flower-powered treat for drier and mature skin types. The only downside is the pricing difference: the new Serum is £75stg but €97, which is a leap. Available from www.votary.de; www.spacenk.com.
2 Narcissus also features in Aesop’s Seeking Silence Facial Hydrator, which features an extract from daffodil bulbs together with a particular micro-algae rich in antioxidants which “work synergistically to soothe skin irritation and reduce skin redness”. I haven’t tried it out, but find Aesop products reliable, and love their brown glass bottles and neat tubes. Aesop is available from www.samuifashions.com, and www.BrownThomas.com; this product is available at www.aesop.com, €47.
3 Narcissus is a key element in scent, though it rarely dominates and tends to play more of a supporting role. It does feature in a few Tom Ford fragrances – most notably the discontinued green Jonquille de Nuit (2012), which I still have the dregs of and really love – it’s one you spray in the depths of winter to remind you that spring lies ahead (please bring it back!). You get hints of it in Vanille Fatal (currently €169 at www.theloop.ie) too.
4 A newer eau de parfum that highlights narcissus is H24 by Hermes. Though it’s ostensibly for men, it’s far too good to miss. So fresh and sophisticated! Read more in our May issue, out on Thursday May 6.
5 Frédéric Malle’s gorgeous Cologne Indélébile, created by Dominique Ropion in 2015, features Narcissus Absolue as part of its lasting bright orange blossom, lemon and bergamot opening, which is then backed up by lasting musk (€180, at Brown Thomas). Find it too in Sale Gosse by Fanny Bal (who was an apprentice of Ropion at IFF).
6 Marija Aslimowska of Dublin perfume boutique Parfumarija mentions Je Reviens by Worth and Amouage Myths Woman as being good examples of narcissus-based scents: the Amouage has narcissus in the top notes along with chysanthemum and violet leaf. I love the sound of Tabac Tabou (€159) also, with Immortelle and tobacco notes alongside narcissues and honey. www.parfumarija.com
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