Best under the radar scents

6 under-the-radar scents you need now

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  • Forget citrus. Or scents that smell like a pina colada. These are the niche summer scents that will make you smell like the most interesting person in the room. Or poolside bar.

    There’s no denying it: artisan-style niche scents are winning over our jaded noses. Sit with them for a while and they smell like nothing we’ve smelt before and we couldn’t love them more for it. At a time when fragrance wardrobes are all the rage, they go one step further: like an olfactory selfie they ramp up your personality, capture a moment and leave behind a unique, memorable trace that makes you stand out from the usual fug of sweet and citrusy summer scents. Here are our favourite niche fragrances for when the Mercury rises…

    Paul Schutze, Behind the Rain

    Paul Schutze

    Paul Schutze

    Paul Schutze Behind the Rain EDP, £135 for 50ml, is so unusual, strangers will stop you on the street to ask what you’re wearing. With its resins, sap, wet bark and lichens, it conjures up rain-bruised fir trees in the Med after a storm. Uncannily true to life.

    Vilhelm Parfumerie, Basilico & Felini

    Vilhelm Parfumerie

    Vilhelm Parfumerie, Basilico & Felini

    Inspired by Italian film director Federico Fellini, who rumour has it requested fresh basil with his meals for its libido-lifting effects, it’s hard to think of a more sensual scent than Vilhelm Parfumerie Basilico and Fellini EDP, £155 for 100ml. Exotic meets herbaceous on first spritz courtesy of dragon fruit and basil before descending into fresh florals such as violet, wild fig, vetiver and green hay.

    Byredo, Gypsy Water Kabuki brush


    Gypsy Water Kabuki brush

    Your eyes aren’t deceiving you – Byredo Gypsy Water Kabuki Perfume, £35, really is a fragrance housed inside a brush normally used to apply make-up. One click releases a micro-fine powder to be swept over the body and the scent of the great outdoors – woodsy, crisp but cut through with pine needles and the smell of campfires. It’s one way to tap into the glamping fantasy without actually pitching up your tent. And because it’s a powder, it’ll anchor the scent to your skin – even on a hot commute to work.

    Juliette Has a Gun, Sunny side up

    Juliette Has A Gun

    Juliette Has A Gun, Sunny Side up

    Ever smelt a colour? No? Well, you will now. Sniff Juliette Has A Gun Sunny Side Up EDP, £76 for 50ml, with its sandalwood, jasmine and coconut milk, and we guarantee you’ll think of the colour yellow. Oh and lazy, sun-drenched days on the beach. Out mid-August,

    Jusbox, Feel N Chill

    Jusbox, Feel N Chill

    Jusbox, Feel N Chill

    The name’s a give away: Feel N Chill by Jusbox EDP, £140 for 78ml, touts stress relief and relaxation without being soporific or venturing into aromatherapy.  One spritz of the watermelon, coconut water and fig leaves and you can almost feel the sand between your toes. So laid back, it should come with a hammock.

    D.S. & Durga, Coriander

    D.S & Durga

    D.S. & Durga, Coriander

    Imagine bottling up a souk and sea breeze? That’s exactly what D.S & Durga has done with Coriander EDP, £139 for 50ml, a left-field aroma that somehow manages to smell cool and spicy by wrapping coriander with pepper, juniper needles, geranium and clove stems.

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