Perfumer Jerome Epinette is best-known for his work for Byredo, the Swedish luxury brand, such as Slow Dance and Velvet Haze (stocked at Brown Thomas). But he’s behind many other great scents, too: the vegan-friendly Floral Street range (www.floralstreet.com); many of the Atelier Cologne scents, including Pacific Lime (at Arnotts); Flash Back by Olfactive Studios (at Parfumarija), and the Chloe Sevigny fragrance, Little Flower.
Fantastically, you can try him on the high street, too – he’s the perfumer behind & Other Stories scents including Fig Fiction and Punk Bouquet, as well as Zara’s Vibrant Leather eau de parfum, which I’m ordering online for €12.95; apparently it’s one for fans of Creed Aventus. (While we’re talking Zara, another great perfumer, Jo Malone, created the Emotions range, including lovely Vetiver Pamplemousse, but they’re currently out of stock; sign up for updates on the layering sets – they make a great gift).
Most recently, I’ve been exploring Epinette’s perfumes for Vilhelm Parfumerie, a collection that’s available in Ireland at Seagreen, from €135. An extensive range, it features all the notes you’re most partial to: citrus, tuberose, smokey ouds, lingering florals, abundant fig and lilac. The names are cleverly evocative: Black Citrus (launched in 2015, fresh and brilliant with a smokey complexity), and Dirty Velvet, a deliciously sexy, rich and atmospheric bergamot, leather and patchouli blend, with a hint of glowing embers, are compelling and long-lasting.
PS Sunspel’s new Oak Wood eau de parfum also has an esteemed perfumer behind the scents: London’s Lyn Harris – for now, you can only buy the candle here (€50), but it’s a lovely fresh clean bright scent to lift your spirits this month.
Our local pharmacies are working wonders keeping us stocked with everything we need, including all things beauty-related. I’m highlighting the Dr Hauschka (certified natural and silicone-free) hair care collection as one to make a beeline for next time you’re stocking up on paracetamol or collecting a prescription. Having always loved the skincare, I’ve been using the shampoo and conditioner religiously because it’s really gentle and comforting, with wafts of spearmint, lemon and bergamot. Treat yourself to some Spruce Warming Bath Essence while you’re there (€9.95) – deeply invigorating and beautifully reminiscent of the icy winter forests that lie beyond your 5k. It’s not always about the newest launches – sometimes the tried and trusted old favourites are simply the best. Find Dr Hauschka in your local pharmacy, or at www.drh.ie.
Irish beauty brand Ayu, created by make-up artist Suzie O’Neill, is about to launch two new foundations to complement their bestselling Under Eye Concealer – so if you’re considering a new base, hold fire for a few weeks until these land on www.ayu.ie. The Fresh Skin Foundation is a super-lightweight hydrating formula, and the Perfect Skin Foundation has a matte finish and, along the lines of Double Wear, is designed to absolutely stay in place for the day. You’ll be able to shade-match online with an expert and receive a sample to try out at home – the only way really to get the right one. From €32.50. For now, invest in one of Ayu’s excellent lip kits, with a lipstick, lip pencil and gloss in either poppy-red or nude (€32.50 – i.e. less than a single lipstick by main brands): the Sara red is as good as you’d find in any beauty hall. A very cheering shade to perk us up during this very long month …
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