The lightest, brightest, freshest spring fragrances to buy right now

From the fragrant and fruity to the bright and breezy, these are the scents you should be spraying this season

Gone is the winter of our discontent. It’s time to fold up the flannel overshirts, pack away the hard-working Redwings, and put down your go-anywhere parka for the next six months. In your abode, too, it’s seemingly the right opportunity to slowly deconstruct the unsightly WFH office and spruce up your spaces with some new wares and midcentury pieces. And, with society starting to return to its pre-2020 shape, it’s probably time to peak your head out of your domestic cocoon, bear witness to the start of a new season, and revive your social life once again.

And, while we’re in the mindset of resetting, perhaps it’s time to also give your fragrance portfolio a revamp – after all, there’s nothing quite like a new spritz to put a spring in your step. So, as we thaw our way out of winter and set our sights on the months ahead, it’s now apropos to circumvent the heady, heavy, spice-centric scents and instead look towards bottles with a lighter touch. To assist you with finding the right one, we’ve spent time sampling the finest fragrances that’ll offer up a breath of fresh air, from old perennial classics to the more contemporary names on the perfume block.

To prepare for balmier days, go fragrant and fruity

After months of drawing upon the leathery, woody, oud-y scents that typify our winter fragrances, it’ll be nice to irk towards something that’s a bit softer on the olfactory system. And, as nature blossoms, your aftershave collection should follow suit – so get yourself something with flowery, fruity qualities.

Acqua di Parma, Fico di Amalfi

The noteworthy characteristics?
Intended to bring to mind the sun-kissed feel of the Amalfi Coast, this bottle features Italian bergamot, Italian lemon, and grapefruit – such notes are, however, tempered by fig nectar, pink pepper, and benzoin (tree resin).

When to wear it?
During those times when you can’t quite fit a flight into your schedule, but still want a quick taste of La Dolce Vita.

The lightest, brightest, freshest spring fragrances to buy right now

Acqua di Parma, Fico di Amalfi

£134.00

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Floris, Bergamotto di Positano

The noteworthy characteristics?
Another fragrance inspired by Italy, this offering from Floris is centred around bergamot, one of the peninsula’s most famed citrus fruits. It’s reinforced by mandarin and “warm marine notes”, and while the hit of vanilla smooths out the sharpness, ambrette (a medicinal plant) and ginger are intended to evoke the warmth of an evening by the Med.

When to wear it?
When you want to shake up your La Dolce Vita fragrance rotation, of course.

The lightest, brightest, freshest spring fragrances to buy right now

Floris, Bergamotto di Positano

£120.00

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Byredo, Gypsy Water

The noteworthy characteristics?
A deep yet approachable scent, Byredo expertly offsets the fresh (lemon, juniper berries) with small touches of more intense notes (pepper, incense, pine needle). A long-lasting, durable spray, it is angled to make you think of long, idle evenings in the woodlands.

When to wear it?
On trails in Portland, the Vienna Woods, Dragon’s Back in Hong Kong, or, if local is more your thing, the nearest gastropub terrace.

If you’re looking for freshness, seek out citrus and sandalwood

There’s something pleasantly reviving about springtime. As the weather brightens and the days lighten, we feel more energised and vigorous than in the previous months — and your aftershave should reflect this. To this end, nothing will give you more zest and zeal than citrus and sandalwood notes.

Tom Ford, Neroli Portofino

The noteworthy characteristics?
A grooming-cabinet staple since its launch in 2011, the easy-to-wear Neroli Portofino captures the essence of the lush Italian Riviera, with notes of Sicilian lemon, winter yellow mandarin and orange flowers – and the jewel-blue bottle is just as iconic as its lively, vibrant profile.

When to wear it?
In the office, in the park, at home, at the restaurant, when walking the dog, when asleep, when in the shower, when pondering life’s bigger questions – there’s no setting or scenario in which this smash-hit won’t work.

The lightest, brightest, freshest spring fragrances to buy right now

Tom Ford, Neroli Portofino

£178.00

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Creed, Himalaya

The noteworthy characteristics?
Taking its cues from the landscapes of the Himalayan Mountains, this is positioned as a citrus-forward fragrance that also leans towards the rugged end of the scale, with heavy aromas of cedarwood, nutmeg and sandalwood, all of which are encased in an industrial-looking vessel.

When to wear it?
While clearing your head when hiking the Tour du Mont Blanc or stretching the legs on the Santa Cruz trek in Peru.

Perfumer H, Bergamot

The noteworthy characteristics?
One of the best options to pay homage to that most prestigious of citrus fruits, Perfumer H’s bottle, which arrives in an apothecary-style design, heads towards the richer end of things, as it ties together hints of Paraguayan petitgrain, French lavender, warm clove, and frankincense.

When to wear it?
With a more punchy profile than many of its counterparts, this is perhaps one to wear to the power lunch when trying to make a lasting impression.

The lightest, brightest, freshest spring fragrances to buy right now

Perfumer H, Bergamot

£120.00

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To spring towards summer, spritz on something versatile and breezy

And then there are the all-rounder fragrances; the spring scents that smell so clean, refined and innocuous that when you breathe them in, you might well convince yourself that you’re walking on a beach or through a meadow. With well-balanced blends that have the ability to whisk you away, these are the bottles to escape with.

Penhaligon’s, Castile

The noteworthy characteristics?
A unisex classic from 1998, Castile, by storied fragrance house Penhaligon’s, has hints of an Iberian influence due to its layering of orange blossom and rose, all tied together by a woody base. The ornate bottle with rounded topper, more curios than product, is alone worth the purchase.

Where to wear it?
When pintxo-hopping in the Basque Country or settling into one of Madrid’s many singular vermuterias.

The lightest, brightest, freshest spring fragrances to buy right now

Penhaligon’s, Castile

£115.00

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Truefitt & Hill, Freshman cologne

The noteworthy characteristics?
Apt for a heritage label, the Freshman was formulated with well-attired Oxbridge students in mind, fusing together traditional aromas such as rosemary, mint, lily of the valley and jasmine.

Where to wear it?
During weekends away in rural Hampshire or getaways in The Hamptons – essentially any time when you’re wearing a preppy ensemble of chinos, a piqué polo, and a heavy-knit pullover draped around your shoulders.

The lightest, brightest, freshest spring fragrances to buy right now

Truefitt & Hill, Freshman cologne

£65.00

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Issey Miyake, L’Eau d'Issey pour Homme

The noteworthy characteristics?
In Issey Miyake’s first perfume for men, yuzu and tangerine meet water lily, tobacco, and vetiver. A clean, straightforward essential that has endured ever since it first hit shelves in the mid-nineties.

Where to wear it?
A fragrance that is suitable for any occasion or event, however formal or informal, it’s best for daily usage, from early morning meetings to the late-evening wine-bar reservation.

The lightest, brightest, freshest spring fragrances to buy right now

Issey Miyake, L’Eau d'Issey pour Homme

£74.00

Buy Now

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