Here comes spring — a tricky time for men’s grooming. Gone are the long, dark days of winter and, with them, the ideal opportunity to wear rich, leathery scents of woods and ouds. But summer is still a way off — and we’ll need to wait several months before we can wear the bright sparkling citrus and herb fragrances made for warmer weather. So what scents are left for spring?
The natural answer is floral fragrances. Bold, balmy and highly aromatic, flowers should be the solution to your springtime aftershave problem. But many men don’t feel comfortable spritzing on such sweetly-scented fragrances; instead more at-home with the deep, earthy accords of wintry eau de parfums. So, below, we’ve rounded up the best subtle floral scents for spring — perfect options despite your opinions on blossoms and blooms…
For a subtle spring scent, Floris ‘Mulberry Fig’
First up comes Floris. Reliable as ever, the Jermyn Street perfume house has offered an ideal springtime spritz with ‘Mulberry Fig’. Created by the in-house perfumery team, this scent is clean and crisp — ideal to bridge the gap between the frostiness of winter and summer’s heat.
It opens with a lilting aromatic lift of bittersweet orris and violet leaf, with vetiver and cypress quietly nodding to the summer months to come. Similarly, woodier notes of amyris, cedar and sandalwood offer warmer, more sensual memories of classic winter aftershaves. But the real star of this show is fig, with its potent bouquet swelling the scent’s honeyed sweetness.
Floris ‘Mulberry Fig’
For a summer-facing fragrance, Creed ‘Erolfa’ Eau de Parfum
This may not be new like Floris’ offering above, but Creed’s ‘Erolfa’ takes its inspiration from the fragrant family’s travels around the Mediterranean oceans. Blended by master perfumer Olivier Creed, this salt-sprayed scent emanates that fresh spring feeling with natural notes of bergamot, ginger and basil.
But the real masterstroke here — and what makes ‘Erolfa’ perfect for spring — is Creed’s use of fruit fragrances. There may be flowery notes of lavender and Jasmin in the aromatic mix, but the perfume house has cleverly tempered these traditionally summery scents by essence of watermelon, mandarin and cucumber. The result? A spring spin on a summer classic.
Creed ‘Erolfa’ Eau de Parfum
For a masculine spin on flowers, Penhaligon’s ‘Highgrove Bouquet’
Created in collaboration with Highgrove Gardens, the private residence of Their Royal Highnesses The Prince of Wales and The Duchess of Cornwall, this royally fragrant eau de parfum smells like the greatest, grandest outdoors.
The chief fragrance here is silver lime — a tree with star-shaped flowers that carry the far-reaching fragrances of honey and lemon peel. Take a second sniff, and you’ll get a more masculine note of cedar. But the best touch has to be the floral head; wild, lingering lashings of yellow mimosa — aromas that sit softly atop the strong, masculine base without obscuring it altogether.
Penhaligon’s ‘Highgrove Bouquet’
For Riviera sunshine, Tom Ford ‘Fleur De Portofino’
Whilst the designer’s ‘Black Orchid’ may be the perennial, seasonal classic, ‘Fleur de Portofino’ offers up its floral credentials right there in the name. And it’s become a highly spritzed scent for a reason; inspired as it is by the cascades of acacia flowers you can see spilling from shady trees in Mediterranean gardens.
And these white flowers are just the start. Brimming with scores of blooms and botanicals, you can also expect notes of black locust, jasmine, orange blossom, magnolia, osmanthus and Moroccan rose — before effervescent citruses and honey bring it home with a sweep of Riviera sunshine.
Tom Ford ‘Fleur De Portofino’
For an exotic springtime spritz, Diptyque ‘Do Son’ Eau de Parfum
As a child, Yves Coueslant, one of Diptyque’s founders, spent his summers at the seaside at Halong Bay. The sea breeze carried with it the heady and slightly spicy scent of tuberoses — sweet, floral-scented blossoms —that his mother loved so much. ‘Do Son’ distills this flower’s powerful fragrance from Coueslant’s childhood.
It’s a lovely, lively fragrance, with summer-facing fruity top notes of orange blossom, and some wintry base notes including amber wood. But it’s a spring fragrance at heart — offering up petal-forward aromas of jasmine and iris, as well as that exotic tuberose.
Diptyque ‘Do Son’ Eau de Parfum
For a Scandi scent, Byredo ‘Unnamed’ Eau de Parfum
And finally, we return from the coastal wilds of northeast Vietnam to Stockholm, where Byredo are bucking the branded aftershave trend with their blank-labelled, ‘Unnamed’ eau de parfum. Including stick-on letters, you can come up with your own name for this potent, piquant fragrance — with its sharply, peppery top notes.
Gin’s to thank for that tang. The spirited spirit offers itself up as the top note for Byredo’s fiercely fresh fragrance. But the best touch has to be the floral mid-notes; lush violet, orris stem and pink peppercorn. And, to wrap things up, a woody base of tree moss and balsam fir.
Byredo ‘Unnamed’ Eau de Parfum
Want something more traditional? Here are 10 classic fragrances that will never go out of style…
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