Brand Spotlight - The Organic Pharmacy
I was lucky enough recently to receive generous samples of four of the five perfumes of the Organic Glam line the all-natural brand The Organic Pharmacy offers. There is a lovely boutique in Vienna that carries the line. I will write more about this boutique on Olfactoria’s Travels next week.
The inspiration behind our fragrances was to create a 100% natural and organic fragrance line that matched the strict ethos of the organic pharmacy: No artificial fragrances, No artificial colours, No phalates, No animal ingredients. But at the same time gave the sophisticated woman a range of luxury fine fragrances in beautiful packaging that she would wear firstly as a fragrance she loved and secondly as an organic fragrance. Three years in the making our five fragrances use the finest and rarest extracts, expertly blended to create unique scents that are modern classics.- from the website of The Organic Pharmacy
All five perfumes are available in 100ml bottles of Eau de Parfum for 220$. I wish they would make smaller sizes. I don’t need 100ml of anything. Give me a 30ml bottle or even smaller and I will be way more interested. That particular rant bears repeating, maybe some day it’ll go through.
This is my least favorite of the four I got to test. It is said to be inspired by the Southern Italian Riviera. Unfortunately it reminds me more of air freshener, insect repellent and Citronella candles. Notes include Sicilian Lemon and Bergamot, Moroccan Orange Blossom, Ylang Ylang, Patchouli and Neroli. From the start there is a very artificial (ironic in a 100% natural fragrance) and sharp lemon note that dominates everything else into the ground. It relents a little later in the development and the orange blossom makes a short, sweet and rather lovely appearance, but the fragrance soon veers off again into a metallic and grating patchouli base that – again – smells strangely artificial. I know natural fragrances like Aftelier, DSH and Anya’s Garden, so I am really perplexed at the artifice of this one. But maybe that is just my perception.
The second scent I tested was more to my liking. Oriental Blossom is touted as a journey through the Orient. Notes of Sicilian Bergamot, Lemon and Mandarin, Cinnamon, Clove, Rose, Neroli, Oakmoss, Vetiver, Pepper, Vanilla and Ylang Ylang. After a few minutes the dense citrus top notes give way to a heart of spicy rose. The cinnamon and clove give a lot of heat to the rose-ylang-ylang accord that dominates the perfume. It finally gives way to a softly sweet and mossy dry down. It smells more like a chypre than an oriental. This is not a light fragrance; it seems rather dense and opaque. It would be well suited for the cold season and would certainly be too much in the heat of summer. Also a little goes a loooong way with these. One more point in case for smaller bottles!
The name says it all – Jasmin smells of jasmine. A fairly naturalistic rendition too, this soliflore segues from the freshly dew covered blossoms to the fully opened flowers at night. Notes include Egyptian Jasmine and Ylang Ylang, Sicilian Bergamot and Sandalwood. The fresh top notes are lovely and depict the not yet fully opened jasmine blossoms nicely. The perfume moves on to open up to a heady, a little indolic jasmine in full bloom and settles into a comfortable sandalwood base. It has greater than average sillage and impressive staying power. For jasmine lovers this is as close as you get to the actual flower. For me it is a bit overwhelming, since I am not a huge jasmine fan on the best of days, and this makes me feel like I am wearing a whole tree full of it on my back.
Saved the best for last…wait a minute: Oud turns out to be my favorite? Sign and miracles! I had yet to find an oud I like and the proliferation of that note to appearing in every second new release did nothing to endear it to me.
Oud depicts the “journey through the Arabian Souk”. Notes include Moroccan Cedarwood, Indian Oud , Black Pepper, Cardamon, Rose, Sandalwood,Vetiver and Tonka Bean. What I love about this fragrance is its mildness. The oud note is clearly there, but it is soft, balanced, smooth, round and has a wonderful depth and multi-faceted richness. Neither harsh nor sharp, not medicinal or screechy, this oud is singing in lovely harmony with the other spices present (I smell cardamom, pepper and a teeny bit of saffron). The woody backdrop is there from the beginning to provide solid scaffolding upon which the rose can climb safely and shine. The late dry down is warm and sweet thanks to the tonka bean. Oud is the most balanced and interesting perfume of the four. It is perfectly gender neutral, lasts for six hours on me and projects well, without being intimidating.
The bottles the Organic Glam scents come in look very well-made and beautiful. The perfumes are available from the Organic Pharmacy website and several brick and mortar stores, a list of which can be found here.