It’s rare to find a product with such a powerful impact on you, that it creates such an uplifting experience every time you use it. Time and time again, it enhances your daily life, giving you that energy boost and a sense of elegance. That for me is a Jo Malone perfume.
For a long time, I didn’t pay much attention to the powerful sense of scent, even though I enjoyed smelling nice perfume now and then. The sense of scent is undervalued, compared to the sense of taste on which we tend to rely most frequently.
Five years after I moved to London, I discovered perfume shops like Molton Brown and Jo Malone. They seemed aspirational. I saw that Molton Brown had large white sinks in the middle of their stores, so I anticipated they may be offering sampling experiences to entice shoppers to come into the store. That thought made me question whether Jo Malone offered a similar experience. To my surprise, I discovered that they were offering something far better - complimentary Hand and Arm massages, as well as Scent your Wedding experiences, amongst others. What’s more, anyone could book these signature experiences via the appointments page on their site or in-store with one of their in-store advisers. I was so thrilled to discover that they were offering these wonderful services in any store free of charge.
The first time I experienced the hand and arm massage from Jo Malone was in their Selfridges store. The service I received on that occasion wasn’t spectacular (the lady was a bit rushed), but it taught me something very interesting, fragrance layering, as a way to create your bespoke scent. I didn’t know anything about fragrance combining, so when the lady at the counter asked me to pick two fragrances I wanted to try while she was preparing my skin for the experience with a hot towel, I was confused. She then explained to me that Jo Malone fragrances complement each other and that the most popular fragrances come in more than perfume (such as body washes, body oils and moisturisers etc.), with the intent of allowing you to layer them onto yourself whilst your creating a skincare ritual.
The above experience was the occasion when I got introduced to my first Jo Malone favourite scent, English Pear and Freesia. I just loved it so much, the sense of freshness and uplifting floral scent felt divine. It also sounded like a very interesting combination that I had not heard of before in a perfume: combining pears with freesia sounded so unique, unusual and, literally, ground-breaking. I didn't even know that pears had a smell. But then I discovered the luscious scent of juicy, ripe pears, evocative of nature at its best. I also didn’t know what the freesia flower smelt like. The English Pear and Freesia is a Jo Malone classic fragrance. With undertones of sensuously deep patchouli, mellow amber and woods, to me, this fragrance is so special, that it makes me feel incredibly happy, every time I sprinkle it on me. For a long time, whenever I would pass by a Jo Malone store, I would take the opportunity to go and sample it. It seemed a bit too indulgent to buy it for myself without a special occasion, so the in-store sampling was my only opportunity to enjoy it.
After a while I came across another beautiful scent from Jo Malone: Red Roses. the moment I smelt it, I was instantly mesmerised by the captivating scent of a thousand ripe roses whose innocent fragrance seemed to have been squeezed into the Jo Malone perfume bottle. I spritzed the tester a few times on me and I could not believe how enticing the scent was. As soon as I walked away from the store, I knew I had to have that perfume in my life. It was just so divine to smell it and I could not believe how long the fragrance lasted on me. I remember so clearly still how I said to myself: I would feel so happy every day if I could wear this fragrance constantly. A deep sense of longing for this perfume arose in me and I could not wait for my birthday to come to ask for it as a present. After my partner gifted it to me for my birthday, I could not stop wearing it. I used to take it to work with me to top it up in the afternoon and colleagues passing by my desk would be enchanted by my fragrance: “Oh, what’s this perfume?”, they would remark. To which I would show them my travel-size Jo Malone bottle (it’s all my partner could afford) and they would look at it with curiosity, as if saying “Is this tiny bottle the source of this powerful scent?“The above experience was the occasion when I got introduced to my first Jo Malone favourite scent, English Pear and Freesia. I just loved it so much, the sense of freshness and uplifting floral scent felt divine. It also sounded like a very interesting combination that I had not heard of before in a perfume: combining pears with freesia sounded so unique, unusual and, literally, ground-breaking. I didn't even know that pears had a smell. But then I discovered the luscious scent of juicy, ripe pears, evocative of nature at its best. I also didn’t know what the freesia flower smelt like. The English Pear and Freesia is a Jo Malone classic fragrance. With undertones of sensuously deep patchouli, mellow amber and woods, to me, this fragrance is so special, that it makes me feel incredibly happy, every time I sprinkle it on me. For a long time, whenever I would pass by a Jo Malone store, I would take the opportunity to go and sample it. It seemed a bit too indulgent to buy it for myself without a special occasion, so the in-store sampling was my only opportunity to enjoy it.
After that, I discovered Blackberry and Bay. Even to this day, I still feel uplifted and enchanted when I put it on. Even though I have been using it regularly, it’s amazing how it still captivates me to the point of being surprised by its impact. The unique combination of juicy ripe blackberries and freshly picked bay leaves is as interesting as it is unusual. I never knew that blackberries or bay leaves could create such a powerful fragrance. Picking blackberries used to be one of my favourite pastimes. I only became aware of blackberries being so accessible and plentiful when I moved to the English countryside in Kings Langley (more about my village life here) and I loved picking them so much, that I even bought a freezer to store all my blackberries! Moreover, I got my family and my partners’ family to take part in picking them with me when they came to visit. So, it goes without saying that this fragrance is evocative of great memories in my heart.
A few months ago, I discovered what became my Jo Malone favourite fragrance, Basil and Neroli. This scent is so interesting, complex and rich, yet light and fresh. What’s curious about it is that it always leaves a spa-like after-scent, that makes you feel like your skin has been freshly moisturised. I can’t remember how I came across this perfume and certainly what made me want to sample it is still a mystery to me. I didn’t even know what neroli was. Also, basil sounded like a domestic fragrance, albeit with a distinctive scent, yet not worthy of a high-end perfume. Yet, the combination of the two is absolutely divine and I am so grateful I got to experience it. Fresh, fun, full of adventure, I absolutely adore this fragrance now. I still remember how once just before a Christmas party, I sprinkled a bit of Basil and Neroli (a little leftover that I had in a sample bottle) on me while I was getting ready. Even though I walked outside for several minutes to get to the venue, the fragrance didn’t fade away and the first person I hugged first, remarked: “Oh, what’s that smell?“.
Basil is actually a staple scent of Jo Malone perfumes, presumably because it complements and enhances any uplifting tones. Indeed another favourite of mine is Lime, Basil and Mandarin. What an interesting combination of citrus fruits and plants, combining peppery basil and aromatic thyme with the twist of limes in an uplifting, breezy fragrance.
Also, purely refreshing is the Grapefruit fragrance whereby the undertones of rosemary, peppermint and pimento add perfect piquancy to grapefruit's bright and sunny nature.
Another interesting Jo Malone scent is Earl Grey and Cucumber. Earl Grey tea is so quintessentially English and it is evocative of the afternoon tea tradition. A beautiful, light fragrance with a burst of bergamot and the cool succulence of crunchy cucumber, counterpoised with a sweet base of beeswax, vanilla and musk. Reviving and refined, I love the distinctiveness of this scent.
While the fresh and floral fragrances are my favourite ones, I also like the sweet scent of Wild Bluebell, which is so vibrant. The delicate sweetness of dewy bluebells is suffused with lily of the valley, eglantine and a luscious twist of persimmon.
I recently discovered Wood Sage and Sea Salt. Another unexpected scent that transposes the mind to the windswept shore, where the waves break white and the air is fresh with sea salt. This is a mineral scent which celebrates the woody earthiness of sage. Lively, spirited and totally joyful. As it’s not a floral scent, men can wear it, too. Actually, most of the Jo Malone perfumes are unisex.
My partner loves the woody scents such as English Oak and Redcurrant. This is a bright and embracing fragrance that combines juicy bites of redcurrant with the zest of green mandarin, the freshness of rose softened with white musk, all enveloped in roasted oak. However, his absolute favourite is English Oak and Hazelnut, which is a subtly earthy fragrance that brings to life the scent of crunchy hazelnuts with the spice of elemi and the earthy woodiness of vetiver cooled by emerald moss carpets on warming base of roasted oak.
Another favourite of mine is Amber and Lavender. For a long time, lavender has been my favourite scented plant and the combination with amber makes it so velvety and refined.
What I love about Jo Malone is that it captures the scent of the most simple plants and transforms them into high-end scents, that makes one feel so energised, vibrant and mesmerised. Each Jo Malone cologne only combines about 15 scents, which is far less than the 200+ scent combination that go into making the other high end perfumes Chanel, Dior, Bulgari, Givenchi etc. which to me smell heavy and chemical - definitely not a scent you want to carry around with you or be remembered for.
This simplicity of scents and the subtle richness of combining their pure scent was so well reflected in one of the temporary collections that J Malone launched a few years ago, English Fields. This was evocative of the English countryside, by bringing to life the scents of oat, redcurrant, poppy, barley, wheat, meadows and many other scents from the English garden (or any garden for that matter). This collection to me was a celebration of how rich the simple life can be. By bringing to front stage the essence of wildlife, Jo Malone conveyed its very mission.
Every Spring Summer, Jo Malone releases temporary collections that are evocative of a particular scent theme. The latest one, Blossoms in Bloom, puts at centre stage Magnolia (through the rightly called fragrance “Star Magnolia”), which has a divine scent with notes of Lemon and Sandalwood and it comes in a new form, as a hair mist. What an absolute indulgence for the hair which means you will be surrounded by this fragrance from all angles. This collection is a fragrance exploration of blossoms and it also brings to spotlight some interesting new scents, that I haven’t yet got to experience, like Frangipani Flower and Silk Blossom. This collection also celebrates a Jo Malone classic fragrance, Orange Blossom.This simplicity of scents and the subtle richness of combining their pure scent was so well reflected in one of the temporary collections that J Malone launched a few years ago, English Fields. This was evocative of the English countryside, by bringing to life the scents of oat, redcurrant, poppy, barley, wheat, meadows and many other scents from the English garden (or any garden for that matter). This collection to me was a celebration of how rich the simple life can be. By bringing to front stage the essence of wildlife, Jo Malone conveyed its very mission.
I just love how the scent of Jo Malone perfumes lasts for hours and hours. I’ve tried many other high-end, luxury perfume brands, but none of them seem to last for longer than 15 minutes on me. Whereas when I put on Jo Malone, I can still smell it at least a couple of hours after application. The Jo Malone consultants advise to make the fragrance even longer by washing your skin with a Jo Malone body wash, followed by body lotion, either from the same fragrance, or different one, if you are going for fragrance layering. I love this ritual and wish I could afford to enjoy it daily.
I remember once when I went to see a couple of friends and because I had a bit of spare time before our meeting time, I popped into Jo Malone. I sprayed a couple of fragrances on me and then took my time, walking about in the city centre before I was due to meet them. Once I met them, they were so suprised by my fragrance, one of them even exclaimed: “Aww, this smell!”
I love Jo Malone for making their high-end perfumes so accessible. I would have never discovered these beautiful products had it not been for their signature hand and arm massages that they so generously offered me and my partner.
All Jo Malone stores, no matter how small (including the airport concessions) have a tasting bar were shoppers can experience the fragrance. A couple of times I even enjoyed a Jo Malone Hand and Arm massage and a Scent your Wedding pamper session in the train station (in the St Pancras store). I love Jo Malone for making their high-end perfumes so accessible. I would have never discovered these beautiful products had it not been for their signature hand and arm massages that they so generously offered me and my partner.
Jo Malone is one of the few brands which has managed to create a consistent brand personality in store, which transcends online. The Jo Malone stores only vary in size, but they have the same warm beige & elegant black look and feel , with the tasting bar positioned in a prominent position (normally against a floor-to-ceiling window). It’s where senses meet and where aspirations arise. It is indeed an aspirational brand, but one that becomes accessible to everyone through these multi-sensorial experiences. There is no barrier to trial and there is no obligation to purchase. Every now and then, the flagship store makes a splash through a theatrical window display, meant to catch the eye and stir the senses of passers-by.
What’s more, apart from the hand and arm massages, they also offer other complimentary services: Scent your Wedding, Scent your Home, Essentials for Men. My partner and I experienced the Scent your Wedding treatment a few times and loved it. This actually gave us the idea of bringing some scented candles and diffusers to our wedding, to captivate our guests and add our personal spin on it.
The Scent your Wedding service comes with champagne and chocolates and it’s such a great way to discover their wider range of scents and products that you may use for an elegant wedding. It truly is a multi-sensorial experience that captivates your olfactory sense, while appealing to your taste buds also. To the best of my knowledge, no other fragrance brand goes to such great lengths as to enchant customers with their sensorial experiences, in all stores and in a complimentary manner. I appreciate so much how Jo Malone adds a little bit of sparkle and glamour in my ordinary life and helps me to treasure my olfactory sense.
I love Jo Malone for making my life so beautiful. I carry a travel size bottle of Jo Malone with me wherever I go and whenever I am in need of a pick-me-up, something to lift my mood, I sprinkle a bit on me and I instantly feel better. It’s the best form of instant gratification and the best part is that it has no side effects (I can indulge in it as much as I want, without being fearful of any weight gain). Jo Malone has become one of my happiness artifacts and I make sure to take it with me every day to work. Office life can be quite draining sometimes (spending 8+ hours daily pinned to the same chair, while dealing with the everyday work pressures), but Jo Malone has hat magic power to whisk it all away. It truly is magical.
I haven’t had the opportunity to sample all the Jo Malone perfumes and there are certainly some that I do not enjoy as much (the rich or sweet fragrances like Peony and Blush Suede, Honeysuckle and Savanna and Myrrh and Tonka). That’s probably why I have only discovered a few of them, the ones I mentioned above, even though I went to Jo Malone stores countless of times. Loving them so much means that I want to experience them often and discover them in depth, without being distracted by other scents. Even though I am the kind of person who loves variety and trying new things, when it comes to perfume, I like to indulge in what I know for sure will make me happy. I am sure there are many other Jo Malone perfumes that I will become passionate about, but I am just going to take my time to discover and indulge in them.