Words: Lauren Carbran
In the past, anti-pollution products have been limited to moisturisers, cleansers and face masks – until now. Yes, we’ve seen clean-air technology in creams protecting us from polluted air and even devices that offer deep-cleansing for those who live in the world’s most polluted cities (because our hands have totally gone out of fashion, don’t you know). Now I’m psyched to introduce the answer to anti-pollution perfume: fresh-air scents…
Fresh-air inspired scents have actually been trending since 2017. Yes, they may have taken the fragrance world by storm for some time now, but with summer finally showing its face, there’s no better time to get to know them.
‘The clean-living movement has dominated the essence of the beauty industry for the past few years and has subsequently transformed into this,’ says perfumer Roja Dove. ‘The smell of fresh air is captured through headspace technology. This is a method where odour molecules, which come from raw materials, are captured and then taken to a laboratory, where perfumers attempt to recreate the smell.’
It’s estimated that two million people in London are living with illegal air pollution, with the first breach of pollution limits being in 2017. So could the fresh-air perfume revolution be the subliminal message we’ve been waiting for? Are we all just craving a breath of fresh air, a hole in the clouds to lift our spirits or just a walk down a high street that doesn’t smell of polluted buses? I know I am.
I’m a firm believer in giving yourself a break from the city and immersing yourself in fresh, unpolluted air. I choose park paths over roadside walks and am at my happiest at the top of a mountain in the French Alps (with a glass of rosé, I should note). So year after year when I discover new, unapologetic fresh-air scents, I feel like an excited child at Christmas.
Take the new Dolce & Gabbana Light Blue Sun for her, for example. It’s inspired by the Island of Capri and smells of fresh, invigorating air – yep, ozonic accord is one of the first hints you’ll get when you spray this, along with tropical wafts of coconut water and lemon essence.
Then there’s Viktor & Rolf Flowerbomb Bloom for her, with its unique blend of liquid air accord (think syrupy, sweet air), rose and pomegranate. The perfect day to night scent.
For men who want to smell of the great outdoors, Paco Rabanne has answered your prayers. Cue Invictus Legend, a newbie on the block, that boasts a beachy blend of solar salty accord (basically the smell of salty sea air) and grapefruit for the perfect summer scent.
But this smell of freedom should remind us of the reality – that air pollution isn’t going to get any better. Perhaps this artificial creation of a smell we long for is the wake-up call we need to start making a change…