Some beauty products undoubtedly have seasonal appeal. Think Christmas make-up, and it’s hard not to picture a juicy, glossy red lip, while spring is synonymous with washes of lightweight bronzers to disguise the remainders of winter pallor, and autumn is a haze of russets and earthy tones in sumptuous, creamy formulas.
Similarly, the dominant scent note that’d traditionally be associated with summer is floral, whether of the cloying, powdery, lily of the valley variety, or of the more freshly-pruned rose kind. But florals. Florals are it. And when you are on the hunt for a fragrance to wear during these heady, summer days, it’s likely that someone in the perfume department will guide you towards a flowery bottle.
Only, when you think about it, summer is as much about what you put in your mouth as it is about what’s growing in the garden. From the juicy crunch of a slice of watermelon to torn basil tossed onto chunks of buffalo mozzarella and tomatoes to the unmistakable blend of mint, cucumber and strawberries that signals Pimm’s o’clock, summery foods are such a sensory part of the season - and a scent containing their notes is therefore instantly uplifting.
Here, then, is a summer fragrance edit that traverses the usual flowery borders and will instead make your mouth water, guaranteed.
The Citrus Ones. If in your heat-induced reveries, you imagine yourself lying in a hammock somewhere on the Amalfi Coast, surrounded by citrus groves bearing oranges, lemons and limes, and think everything tastes better with a bit of zing, get a citrus scent.
Our top picks? There is no truer orange than Atelier Cologne’s Orange Sanguine Cologne Absolue, £49.50, which calls juicy blood orange to mind, while Miller Harris Citron Citron, £105, is the fizziest, most zesty lemon scent that’s rounded out with a hint of mint. Jo Malone’s classic Lime, Basil & Mandarin Cologne, £88, does precisely what it says on the tin and combines the sharpness of lime with juicy Mandarin and herbal basil.
The Fruits. Buy a a scent that’s fruity if you love biting into a fresh, green apple on a sweltering day, or getting the first punnet of juicy strawberries and eating them al fresco on a long, yawning summer evening.
We love Bronnley Orchard Blossom EDT, £15.50, which blends green apple and mandarin with a hint of spice and musk, and have been bowled over by the sophistication of Clive Christian V Fruit Floral for Women Eau De Perfume, £275, which is a complex smorgasbord of delicious black pepper and frankincense, lead by the dark plum that forms the most powerful note.
The Herb and Spicy Ones. The devil’s in the detail when it comes to cooking, and if a particular spice or herb just does it for you, grab a scent that’ll give you an olfactory hit that’s reminiscent of your favourite throughout the day.
For a fix of basil underpinned by fig and a touch of green grass, grab Vilhelm Parfumerie Basilico & Fellini Eau De Perfum, £155. Also brilliant is Liz Earle Botanical Essence No. 1, £54, which contains pink pepper, cinnamon, clove, tonic bean, and bourbon vanilla, and basically transports you to an English herb garden.
If you like things a little hotter in the spice department and love the idea of wafting through a market in Marrakech, Amouage Figment Woman, £245, is the one for you and will whisk you away to warmer climes where the air is redolent of spice stalls thanks to the notes of pepper, saffron and incense.
… And The Pudding Perfumes. If the end of your main course holds excitement for you because it means you can move onto some of the sweet stuff, grab a perfume that’ll give you your sugar fix with each squirt.
Top of our list is Elie Saab Girl of Now, £37.50, which opens with the sweet scent of almonds and roasted pistachios and simmers down to a moreish note of warming tonka bean, with the overall effect not being wholly dissimilar to a delicious Florentine.
We also can’t get enough of the coconut, vanilla, and almond blend that makes up Laura Mercier Almond Coconut, £42.50, and, when in the mood for something laced with a little liquor, like to hit up Serge Lutens Veilleur de Nuit, £530, which is the most decadent and delicious of blends that conjures up ideas of bubbling chocolate with a hint of booze.
For an instant jolt back to your childhood, grab Creed Love in Black, £190 - it brings violets and blackcurrants together with a touch of clove. The sum result is a little like a sophisticated version of parma violets.